Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Anniversary Trip

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

View from the lodge at Queen Wilhelmina State Park









We kicked off Summer in the Ouachita Mountains, celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary over Memorial Day weekend. We had five days to spend there and, as usual, had many activities to check off our list.

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Flags flying high at City Hall in Mena, Arkansas

My dear love planned a full day of surprises for me. We started by heading over to Mena, Arkansas, where we fueled up for our adventure at the Skyline Cafe in downtown Mena with cathead biscuits and blueberry pancakes.

Next, we cruised around downtown and visited the art galleries and shops, followed by a trip over to the train station for a little history lesson. To cap off our visit we drove up to Queen Wilhelmena State Park for cocktails and dessert. Such a glorious sight and a perfect way to spend a special day!

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Perfect magnolia bloom at Garvan Woodland Gardens

A couple of family members visited us over the holiday and we had a great time hiking with them at Cairn Creek, showing them around Hot Springs (complete with lunch at Rolando’s, one of our fave spots!), and taking a beautiful stroll through Garvan Woodland Gardens,

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Reflecting pool at Garvan Woodland Gardens

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Off-grid cabin at Cairn Creek


Brian made a solo trip just this past week and made more progress on the off-grid cabin. The solar system is installed and we’re ready for interior finish work when we visit this Fall. The boys also spent a day clearing trails and preparing for hunting season.

The goal is Christmas at Cairn Creek this year! I can already see the little Charlie Brown Christmas tree and feel the warmth of the wood-stove on my wool-sock clad tootsies.

Summer in the Ouachita Mountains

Off-grid cabin at Cairn Creek

Return to Kansas



Over the summer back home we’ve been busy with projects and next-steps. We decided to list some property we have near our home in order to cashflow our next project at Cairn Creek. We got that all pulled together and as of this writing we have a contract and a closing date of August 26!

This past week we finalized our rough plans for a “barndominium” style cabin and shop at Cairn Creek. The footprint of the building is 42′ by 55′ giving us ample shop space, storage space, and a living space of 750 square foot.

Once complete, this space will give us, friends, and family a place to stay when we visit and we’ll begin to dip our toes into the vacation rental biz. The timeline for this project to start is February/March of 2020. Stay tuned…

Blog Goals

Finally, I set out two big goals for the blog this Summer. First, I wanted to launch a course and second, I wanted to add a shop page to the blog where I can sell jewelry items and other art pieces.

My first goal of the online course was done in July. You can check out my FREE Self Care Retreat Guide right here on our home page. Give it a look and let me know what you think!

My second goal of a shop page is in the works and should be up and running in the next 30 days or so. I’m really looking forward to sharing some beautiful items with you and, we’ll also do some good with the profits. In addition to helping develop Cairn Creek, a portion of our profits from the shop will go to the Montgomery County Volunteer Fire Departments in honor of my daddy, a retired fire fighter.

New Addition!

Whew! That was a lot to update y’all on all at once! It’s been a busy, and productive Summer. We hit a lot of high notes and we also spent plenty of time being unbusy, relaxing, visiting with friends, and enjoying our nieces and nephews.

Last, but not least, we added a new member to our family! This sweet boy has kept us on our toes and belly laughing since the day he came home… welcome Raylan!

Til next time…



Comments are closed.