So,why is the title of my blog Sun Valley Soul? Have you ever been somewhere and the moment your feet touch the ground you know you're home? You could be under amazing amounts of stress but in that special place it all melts away? In my life, Idaho is that place for me and Sun Valley is the calm in the storm of life.
Every time I go home the closer I get to Boise I can feel the madness and chaos of life slipping away. As the aircraft makes the final approach to the Boise airport a feeling of peace washes over me when I see the foothills and Bogus Basin. The moment I'm on solid ground I can feel myself grounding and drawing nourishment from this sacred place.
Memories of childhood flood back. My summer visits to Karl and Mary Lou's. Me and my cousin Jim helping Karl move irrigation pipe on the farm. Going down to town to the laundromat with Mary Lou to do a week's worth of laundry. Every afternoon picking up Jim and Carie to go to the pool for a summer swim with Mary Lou. Frozen strawberry fights. ROAD HOG!!! I enjoyed having the opportunity to spend time with Megan and Matt in Boise on my way out of town.
Idaho - this is home. Moving around with my parents as a child and as an adult I never really thought I had a place to go back to. But I realized I did when I returned from Okinawa to get my feet under me and figure out my next direction in life. Idaho seeped into my soul, warmed me like a cup of hot chocolate, a good blanket and a roaring fire in the middle of a blizzard.
There's something magical about Idaho, and especially Sun Valley. It calls to me. The beautiful Wood River, Baldy, the Sawtooth Range to the north, the Boulder Mountains to the east, the aspen groves, Warm Springs - all nestled in that little valley, it's home. Just thinking about it takes me there - a great peacefulness settles over me.
Payette does the same thing for me as well. I don't get out to the gateway to Hell's Canyon country that often any more but when I do, peace washes over me crossing the singing bridge over the Payette River. Some of my favorite memories linger from Christmas and Winter Solstice Celebrations. Sitting at the dinner table with Karl and Mary Lou, cremated lamb chops, baked potatoes and salad spread before us. Singing the 12 Days of Christmas, sledding down the rolling hills of the farm as a young girl, Winter Solstice bonfire circles burning out of control at the Trail's - all memories that bring me home - to Idaho, even if I'm not physically there.
I may live in Northern Virginia, and I love my life here - but in my heart home will always be Idaho. I'm just a Sun Valley Soul waiting for the next opportunity to go home to Idaho and feed my soul, drink in the mountains, rivers, aspen and high desert scrub.