The road to my house.

Dear friends,

This is the road to my house.

As you can see from the photo, today is a little overcast. Pretty breezy, but a beautiful 64 degrees. Autumn is in full splendor.

I had one heck of a week, working 42 hours in the last three days alone. But on this glorious Sunday, I paused on my way to the grocery store to snap a photo because, otherwise, how would you ever believe me when I say I live in one of America’s most beautiful spots?

It’s clear now, isn’t it, why Mr. Mom and Parker are so happy with our little patch of paradise, our 15 acres of wooded bliss, chock full of wildlife living under the big Missouri sky?

And me? I complain a lot about those darn hills. (Especially when I’m running up and down them, as I did four times last week — hooray for me!) But I never fail to appreciate their beauty, or the ways in which they delight our spirits even as they exhaust my incline-weary running stride.

I’m right where I told you I would be today. On the sofa, with a a cup of coffee and stack of magazines and my laptop. I’m narrowing down tonight’s supper menu, which will likely be a whole roasted hen, wild rice and Basmati dressing with sausage and sage, cheese grits and corn pudding, and sauteed kale with garlic and red onion. Between the view and the menu, I can’t think of anything more restorative to fill my short weekend respite.

With gratitude {for a glorious Sunday and a three-day work week starting tomorrow},

Joan, who might be disappointed if at least one reader doesn’t note how insanely steep and unrelenting the hills are, thereby commiserating with the flatlander who hasn’t yet made her peace with running in this part of the world



  1. It’s beautiful. I love the colors in autumn, and I am always disappointed if I reach the end of the fall and realize I didn’t stop running around long enough to appreciate them. And, yes, that’s a serious hill to run. I have a love/hate relationship with hills like that one. If there’s one near the route I’m running, I’ll seek it out, because I feel so good about myself afterward, but boy do I hate it while I’m on it!

  2. I tried to start running while we lived in Utah and I swear there’s not a flat stretch anywhere in the state. No wonder I gave up running so easily.

    Your hill is similarly insanely steep. I’d have a hard time being happy running DOWN that hill and wouldn’t think about running up it without being chased by some large predator. Even under those circumstances I’d be liable to stop and try to talk my way out. If I lived long enough to catch my breath that is. No wonder you can plan and eat 4 course meals. Look at the workout you are getting!

  3. You had me with the view, then sent me over the top with the cheese grits and corn pudding.

  4. Sarah Burns says:

    Today was the first time this fall I was able to stop and smell the changing leaves. I was absolutely stunned by the beauty and inspiration it provided. It got me thinking that the extremely fleeting beauty that surrounds us during autumn is so powerful that it deserves daily recognition. Sometimes I think that’s why so many of us break the world record for cliche sayings during fall “omg, can you believe the colors??” or “i love this weather, it’s so perfect!” and then we go home and learn how to knit again. Anyways, the only point I was trying to make is that I totally understand what it feels like to be running along, to come across a vision of such beauty and inspiration, that it makes you stop and take a picture, and we wish that fall could last forever while secretly accepting that the very beauty we admire is more desirable because it is fleeting.

  5. afterthekidsleave says:

    Beautiful! And your menu made me hungry. Running on the hills, though? Yoiks!

  6. Just think of the training those hills are providing. You’ll smoke the flatlanders in a 5K.

  7. Wow that’s breathtaking!

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