Hubby would have been proud. Sort of. On the first leg of my journey moving from Oregon to California, I didn’t stop to photograph any tumble-down barns. Didn’t stop at the Paul-Bunyan-and-Babe-the-Blue-Ox tourist trap. Didn’t pull off the road to Crater Lake (maybe because it was snowed in). And didn’t stop at Carson Mansion. Although I did have to pay tribute to the last of the Oregon Cascades before saying hello to the California redwoods and the Pacific north coast.


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I’m spending a couple days in the beautiful land of Ferndale where Hubby’s youngest brother and his wife own an organic beef ranch …


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… and where sis-in-law works on her father’s organic dairy ranch and great-niece Kenadi helps her grandma. Sort of.


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It’s only been a little more than two months since Hubby died so I’m still in Widowhood 101. And amazingly there are things I assumed would come with widowhood that haven’t panned out. Like being with Hubby’s family at all the places where we were together and now he isn’t there with me – this hasn’t been hard.

This northern California ranch is one of those places. Just sweetness. Surrounded and loved by family. Wanted here. Invited back. Invited to stay, and they’d put me up in a quiet place to write my book. Believing in my book; believing I can write a book.

Here’s a thought: Before we reach widowhood, how smart would it be to cultivate relationships so that when we find ourselves alone, we’re not really alone? We’re wanted. And invited back.

Adapting to widowhood has been quite the learning curve. But being with family without having to deal with deep sorrow or depression has made the transition less learning-curvish. And for this I am extremely grateful.