Went camping in Ashland with Sarah and my adopted brothers Jaden & Jairus at their Uncle Ty's ranch. A wonderful couple of days! Enjoyed the beautiful countryside, played with my little "sister" Tyleah, spent some time with Garla's mom and dad (their grandparents, who live right around the corner), had SMORES!, played hide and seek, made silly movies with the kids on their iPad, and . . . rode a horse for the very first time!!
The sunset sky- our view as we ate dinner with their family outside atop the hill... beautiful
Ready to ride!
The first horse I ever rode!! named Jaden (not to be confused with my 'brother'; it'll be his own horse someday)
The evening sun stretching its rays over the ranch
Playing with Tyleah :)
Jaden driving the ranger down to our camping spot
Setting up camp
Captures the glory of the weekend
The sun sets over Ashland
The next day we were exhausted from our camping adventure but we got up early for the Heart and Sole run/walk in Billings. I did the 2 mile walk with Barbara, her son Otto, her mom, her niece Tatiana, and her sister Maggie. It was a nice morning and the festivities after the race were a lot of fun (popsicles, dunk tanks, obstacle course, rock wall, Zumba, face painting... Sarah & I decided to paint our faces (we asked if we could just do it ourselves) and then I ended up painting this random girl's face too.. ha! I was like sure, I'm not working at this table but I can do it, why not. :o) ) That afternoon Barbara's family had a father's day picnic in a little park that we joined them for. Sarah and I were very overtired so it became quite silly... a long but fun day in Billings!
In the middle of the walk Tatiana had to use the bathroom so they asked some lady who was sitting outside her house with her dogs if they could go in and use it.. lol
During a year of JVC you're supposed to grow in all sorts of ways... and one of my areas of growth has definitely been in cooking. Not that I've cooked all that much, or anything that fancy at all, but it's more than I've ever even attempted before, anyway!
Mmmm, my dinner tonight: this yummy vegetarian burrito wrap! Seasoned Basmati & tomato rice, with black beans, fresh tomato and green-leaf lettuce, and a little bit of shredded cheddar on a warmed flour tortilla (oh, and topped with spoonfuls of fresh salsa!) Very simple but so good!!
Nutrition is also something that I've become more intensely interested in, which is kind of unfortunate because it's also a big challenge to eat locally/organically/vegetarian in Montana (at least where I am) and to eat at all nutritiously on the rez. But the challenge itself has been an experience, and will definitely have me appreciating the options back home. That's one thing I can say I'm looking forward to returning to... adventures in healthy eating!
On Saturday we celebrated the 125th Anniversary of Pretty Eagle Catholic Academy / St. Xavier Mission School (it was founded before even the state of Montana!) It was a lovely celebration. They had past principals and elders of the community speak about the old days at the school, had a mass celebrated by the bishop with the help of several of our students, had a big barbeque feed, and a pow wow in the afternoon. It was a great day!
They've been sprucing up the school for the past month getting it all ready.
Terrel & Don carrying up the cedar bowl for the smudging during mass.
One of our students assisting the bishop for mass
Grand entry, led by officers carrying the Crow Flag, Miss Crow Nation, and Big Horn Princess
Dancing in the pow wow :)
Verdell's boys Colton, Rowdy, & Skylar singing a hand drum song for the crowd... they are the best!
Amazing beadwork!! Bridgette just finished beading these a couple months ago and let me borrow them when I ran over to see if she had any moccasins I could borrow for dancing... omg.
All dressed up for dancing! Just wore my handgame dress like a few of the girls did. I had so much fun being in the pow wow!