By Mandi Donohue

Live from Lost River, it’s your new Mazama War Correspondent! Please join me in welcoming myself to the Methow Valley News. I’m blushing. You’re too kind. In my first act of hard-hitting journalism, I am here to report that the rumors are true — Don actually offered me the job on my wedding day. I was with our photographer taking pictures when he dropped the news on me like it was a gift, like an adorably crafted little picture frame containing my future full of writer’s block, anxiety and vomit. Yay!

What can I say, Don, it’s truly the gift that keeps on giving. We’re psyched! Thank you.

In my second piece of journalism (I like to announce when I’m going to “journalize”), I think I should introduce myself. I am originally from upstate New York. I went to school outside of Boston. I lived in Los Angeles for eight years pursuing acting and comedy but found national recognition with consumer debt. I lived in Chicago for three-and-a-half years, overachieving my pursuit of deep-dish pizza. Currently, I live in Lost River with my honey Lliam, The Small Dog and nine chickens.

I work at the Mazama Store as a baker. This was only supposed to be a summer gig (my aunt is Micki Thomas at Goat’s Beard Mountain Supplies), but Memorial Day weekend marked my three-year anniversary in Mazama. Now I’m a married, I bought a house and after three generations of children, I will officially be considered a local!

Despite my penchant for exclamation points and emoticons, I can be quite shy at first until you get to know me. I’m in bed most nights by 7 p.m., only to get up at 3 a.m., but don’t let my grandma hours fool you. I work hard to garden hard. I consider myself a healthy mix of mindfulness and sarcasm — you know, a Libra with a Virgo ascendant and a Scorpio moon. Whatever that means to you. And finally, none of this matters because I just got back from India in March and I should have been a photojournalist for National Geographic.

So there’s the scoop. That’s me. But like any good deep-dish pizza, there’s always another topping. And that pepperoni or mushroom is you! I need you. This column is only as delicious as you help make it. So do me a favor, please?  Stop in to the bakery and say “hi.” I would be super grateful to get the “low down” and the “411,” being a newbie and all. Invite me to things! Take me to dinner! Pay my mortgage! Or — just introduce yourself. This column needs community. I need community. Lost River is awfully quiet — and winter is coming.

PREVIOUSLY, IN MAZAMA