Joanne Palmer: Friendly letters |

Joanne Palmer: Friendly letters

Joanne Palmer

In 1989, Joanne Palmer left a publishing career in Manhattan and has missed her paycheck ever since. She is a mom, weekly columnist for the Steamboat Pilot & Today, and the owner of a property management company, The House Nanny. Her new book "Life in the 'Boat: How I fell on Warren Miller's skis, cheated on my hairdresser and fought off the Fat Fairy" is now available in local bookstores and online at or

Steamboat Springs — Dear Friends and Family: — Dear Friends and Family:

— Dear Friends and Family:

Greetings from the Jordan family: Jackie, Jim, Jerry, Jasmine and Jewel and Jingles, my little Chihuahuas.

As I write this, I’m sipping a freshly brewed cup of oolong tea and watching a few fat snowflakes swirl. Nevertheless, I can still see the snow on the majestic peaks of Mt. Werner sparkling like the 10-carat, flawless diamond ring Jim gave me for our 25th anniversary this year.

The year got off to an interesting start when I was thrown in jail for “assaulting” one of those bell ringers outside Wal-Mart in Westport, Conn. It was all a big misunderstanding. I thought she was trying to grab my Prada handbag, and I accidentally knocked her over. Because she decided to press charges, we had to cancel our much-anticipated Caribbean cruise. Fortunately, one of Jim’s law firm partners intervened, and I got off. After that ordeal, we needed a change of scenery, so we decided to spend the rest of the year living at our vacation house in Steamboat Springs. My little Pooh-bear was such a brave bear. He drove all by himself from Westport to Steamboat in our new Cadillac Escalade.

Jasmine and I flew to Denver, shopped for a new wardrobe (Ugg boots, of course) and then drove up.

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Jerry joined us in March, as he was finishing up a personal growth month at the Bridgeport Rehab Center. What a fantastic program! He had his own room with a window overlooking Hooters in Bridgeport, Conn.

It’s been a culture shock to live here. We’ve had to embrace simplicity, snow and potluck dinners this year!

The first thing I had to do was buy Jewel and Jingles mink dog coats and little booties. You hardly see any Chihuahuas here. Everyone seems to have those big dogs, Labradors or golden retrievers. My poor babies were freezing!

Jasmine completed her junior year at Steamboat Springs High School and loved it. Although she didn’t want to leave Westport and her boyfriend, Preston Pompous III, she made new friends instantly. She ditched her skis right away and took up snowboarding. She loves to spend time jibbin’ and jammin’ in the terrain park. Her new boyfriend, Cody, is a sweetheart. I haven’t met his parents yet – they’re always working – everyone here has so many jobs. But they’ve lived in the Yampa Valley forever. I think there’s a ski run or a building named after them.

In April, my poor little Pooh-bear, Jim, discovered he had an enlarged prostate gland. That on top of you-know-what last year (no more kids for us!) just about did him in. Fortunately, it’s so cold at night here he still wants to hibernate under our 6,000 thread count duvet cover with me. Thank goodness Jewel and Jingles sleep with us, too.

There’s no mall here so I decided to get outside my comfort zone (I think the kids say that, don’t they?) and work one day a week as a hostess at Ragnar’s, an on-mountain restaurant.

I get to ski to work and even though my hair gets smooshed under my helmet I found a new hair-volumizing product that works at high altitude. I’m the only one who wears lipstick but a girl just can’t give up “Cherries in the Snow,” now can she?

I still fly back to Westport once a month to attend my book club. They are very strict. If I miss two meetings, I’m out. This year my favorite book is, “Eat, Pray Love!” Gosh, what a page-turner!

Anyway, come visit when you can. We like it so much, we’re staying for another year.

See you on the slopes!

– Jackie