Thursday, April 29, 2010

· Multi-Tasker Hungry as a Bear

Sam is a devoted multi-tasker,
as shown in the above photo of him
painting his thumb and watching TV at the same time.

In this second photo of Sam, below,
notice how he resembles the character in the third photo.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

· Project Roundup

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast - Here is an album showing several of Sam's projects, as well as a peek at our Rhubarb's current stage of development. Rhubarb is a beautiful plant, and it doesn't require much patience, like some of Sam's projects do. We can just look out the door and watch it grow from day to day.

(Click the first picture to enlarge...will take you to the album on facebook,

then click 'next' in upper right corner to continue through the album.)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

· Wake up, Hills!

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast - On April 11, adventuring into a Sunday afternoon, we drove to Sylvan Lake to see whether the Needles Highway was open for us local Black Hills tourists. It was, to our joy. The album begins with that drive, and shows pictures ranging from early April 'weather' to a late April blooming bush. Enjoy!

(Click the first picture to enlarge...will take you to the album on facebook,

then click 'next' in upper right corner to continue through the album.)

15 new photos

Saturday, April 24, 2010

· Essence of Latte!

Mountains To Prairies Bed and BreakfastHere is our espresso system - made by Salvatore - warming up for the day...Magnifico!

(click the picture to enlarge...will take you to M2P on facebook; your back button will bring you back)


Our former espresso bean supplier

no longer roasts. Bad news.

But, we called Dark Canyon (Rapid City),

a Black Hills coffee house supplier

where arabica espresso beans are roasted daily.

Given four fresh samples

of various strengths and taste profiles

to take home and try,

yesterday we had a tasting spree.

In between tastes, Sam updated our front signage

to include our Mocha Polka along with

Wild Chokecherry Latte.

Guess what?...Miniscule sleep last night!! Poor Sam,

he is really groggy this morning,

since he actually SWALLOWED all those samples.

Today we will taste-test DECAF.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

· Deerfield Road - Wild Crocus 04.18.10

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast - Included in this album is a picture of Sam reflecting in the mirror finish of the antique farm table which he can now delete from his to-do list. Also, included is another project picture, Sam applying finish to a lounge-style deck chair, destined for the deck of the Prairie Homestead.

Sunday afternoon we went off on a rambling drive along Deerfield Road. After a few miles, we passed a stretch of greening slopes. I glanced over just in time to see several clusters of wild crocuses. Since these were the first I'd seen this year, I was quite excited and nearly jumped out of the car to take pictures. Bu...

See More (click the title below the three pictures)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

· Antique Table Finishing and Micro-Shelf

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast Finishing the antique table has become for Sam more of a CHALLENGE than a mere Project. He asked me to come look at it, thinking we'd also carry it into the house. BUT...he had applied the last coat of finish in the late afternoon ...and ...well ...who would think of gnats in mid-April? Hohum, here we go again—except it is raining, so challenge delayed. On the sunnier side...


How do you like the new micro-shelf that Sam built for the Bluma Madle Suite? In the second pic, Sam is demonstrating an old magnetic toy of Shelby and Ava's (granddaughters), which was placed on the little fridge for one of our toddler guests...

See More (click the link below pics)

Friday, April 16, 2010

· Opening Day and Ongoing Projects

Yesterday morning, Sam continued the task of refinishing one of the B&B's antique breakfast tables. His completed new gate was victoriously checked off his (never-ending) to-do list. He also raked leaves...to keep his weight down while waiting for me to finish our long shopping list.

Then we spent the remainder of the day in Rapid City. We became very hungry just as we were nearing a new Mexican Restaurant, South of the Border—Excellent food, attentive service...and we recommend it!

This morning, our guests have enjoyed their breakfast and French Vanilla Cappuccino. They are now out and about for the day. Shortly after they left, we opened Smiling Bear Antique Shop and Espresso Bar for the first time this season!

When these guests say good-bye to their Black Hills vacation, Sam will apply more finish to the newly constructed outside wall which compliments the CLP Suite. After a little more elbow grease on the new microwave shelf of the Bluma Madle Suite, shall we give him a 15-minute break? :-)

The RHUBARB is breaking ground fast, and beginning to unfurl...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

· Construction Around the House

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast - Sam is still applying finish to his newly sided outside wall (Chessie Lee's Peas Suite), process prolonged by snowfalls, excess cold or wind. In the meanwhile, he built an attractive microwave shelf as a topper for the short refrigerator in the Bluma Madle Suite. Plus he installed a gate to the backyard (for his use in maintenance tasks) on the privacy fence which is around the deck of the Prairie Homestead. Pics later. We just toted one of the antique breakfast tables to the deck for surface refinishing.

The RHUBARB which is planted along the boardwalk (leading to the Prairie Homestead) is just beginning to reach for sunshine, through traces of snow, pictured below. Does that not make you want to get out there and dirty your hands?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

· April 9 Snowfall Unexpected

APRIL is especially full of surprises, and maybe that is why I love spring best of all seasons, besides just enjoying watching everything spring to life again. As noted and pictured in the previous post, Sam, expecting a stretch of clear skies and warm temperatures, busied himself with outdoor carpentry tasks, including applying finish to boards before applying the boards as siding on the exterior wall. Unexpected snowfall in the afternoon prompted him to transfer the boards quickly to sawhorses positioned beneath the branches of the spruce tree (first picture). He chose not to move the boards to the covered porch, to keep the porch attractive for our guests. Click the link below the three pictures to see the album.

Mountains To Prairies Bed and Breakfast Yesterday (Friday) afternoon, gobs of crystalline snow tumbled from the sky, again. Yippeeee...if only our granddaughter Ava could enjoy it with us. She agonizes over never having seen snow in person, to her remembrance. The pictures were taken at 9:00 a.m. ... 10:00 a.m. would have been too late, as the snow is meltin...

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Thursday, April 8, 2010

· Spring Weather Motivation

For several days Sam and I were hunkered down in Hill City,
gazing at pristine spring snowfalls through the windows,
protected by warm walls while the pretty white fluff
drifted lazily outside.

Evenings have been pleasantly cool, ideal for energizing walks.

The unpredictable spring weather has been perfect

for motivating us to the task of cleaning, pricing

and settling down the antiques purchased

on our recent buying trip through warmer states.

And Sam delved into a few indoor carpentry jobs (pic).


Our B&B guests are arriving earlier this year,

and we are happy for the variety of activities their presence creates.

Today, the snow is nearly melted already!

No coat needed.

Sam is in good spirits outside doing a bit of carpentry—

siding a section of exterior wall to match the covered porch,

and to further enhance the cabin-feel of the Chessie Lee's Peas Suite.

When completed, I will post another picture.

This link will take you to a slideshow of the interior of...CLP
(Though not pictured in the slideshow,
CLP now has a comfy loveseat!)