If you've read more than a couple of my blog posts, you know how much I love my home state. Oregon is beautiful, and the beach, the mountains, the city or the desert are each only a couple of hours away. But here's the thing - it's the only place I've ever lived. I could drive to the hospital where I was born in under 45 minutes from my house.
My husband, on the other hand, was the son of a Lutheran pastor, which is a little like being in the military when it comes to putting down roots. He moved quite a bit as a kid. One of his favorite places was Helena, Montana. We took a road trip with our kids about 10 years ago and it was our first stop. It isn't hard to see why he remembers it fondly.
So, the short version of this long story is that we're considering buying a piece of property over there and building our dream house. We can move in about 4 or 5 years, and our daughter and son-in-law are looking to move to that area as well. It's a big adventure, and I'm so excited to get started on it!
Since some of us had only been to Helena once, and one of us never had, we took a road trip last month to check it out.
Now we're all even happier about the idea of moving there than we were before.
One of the first things I looked for in Helena, before we even left on our trip, was a fabric store. No surprise, right? There are a few, and I left with the hope of visiting all of them.
Those hopes were dashed when we ended up having to bring the dogs along on our trip. My daughter has a sweet, calm yellow lab who would be happy to sleep all day. The problem was our old Boxer, who doesn't know he's old and thinks he is a human and needs to be with other humans all the time. We didn't trust him alone in the airbnb, which meant my husband stayed in the truck with him while the kids and I checked out a quilt shop.
Even though it was a pretty quick tour, Prickly Pear Quilts was a good choice.
It's everything you want a quilt shop to be that's located in an area called Last Chance Gulch. It's homey, and packed to the gills with fabric and patterns.
There are quilts hanging everywhere, which is my favorite part of any shop that sells fabric. Show me what I can do with it, and I'm yours.
We had a nice talk with the ladies working there, whose names I didn't ask in my hurry, but they made us feel like very welcome visitors.
They offered to let me play with the fancy computerized sewing machines, but I took pity on my husband and didn't.
I did buy a couple of pieces of fabric, with absolutely no idea of what I'll do with them yet, but they were just too cute to leave behind. While I didn't see these prints in their online shop, they have lots of others, along with patterns and kits that they'd be happy to ship to you!
Prickly Pear Quilts is apparently a popular spot, because in a couple of months they're moving into a larger location. They will definitely see me there too!
We also stopped into another shop nearby called Wildflower Craft Boutique that sells handmade items. Everything there was cute, but I went home with a new t-shirt declaring my love for Montana.
Last, but not least, we ducked into a shop called The Parrot Confectionery. All the types of candy you can imagine, plus a soda fountain! If you find yourself there, don't miss the chocolate covered cinnamon bears. The one I had was delightful, and after I ate him I wished I had about a dozen more.
Because we're thinking we'd like to live there, and it's only a 10 hour drive, we'll be visiting again soon. Definitely no dogs this time. I'm anxious to see what else Helena has to offer!