After four kids, ten moves and nearly two decades, we are still blissfully in love (most of the time) and I found myself back in the state I was born and raised in. It has definitely been a journey. In fact, on our 18th anniversary we pulled the last of our stuff up over the pass and into Montana, leaving our surprise love, Idaho, behind. But Montana is a great place. The last best place according to some. And we fully intend to explore as much of it as we can! Join us on our continued adventure through life, love and other stuff that comes with it.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Desperate for spring

Even though the calendar said it's been spring for over a week, our weather just hasn't quite figured that out yet.  We still have a couple feet of snow.

But there is hope.  The driveway has made an appearance.  And the two older kids just couldn't resist.  Out came the bikes.

 And the rollerskates. 

There are puddles to ride and skate through.  And snow to get stuck in.

I'm not absolutely craving spring. 

But I will admit that it's nice that the kids went outside.

Even though they came in soaking wet and cold 20 minutes later.

Hey Calla! You know those training wheels?

They're coming off this summer. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

A picture worth a thousand questions

Who is Sandy?? (I'm assuming Sandy is a she, just so you know.  And I'm assuming that a he put the sign up.)  But why is he so sorry that he had a 30' vinyl (expensive!) sign made and post it on a dumpster for the whole world to see?  Did she even see it?  And if she did, what on earth did she do?  Did she gasp and know it was just for her? Did she call him crying and accepting he apology?  Did she laugh so hard she could barely see through her tears?  Did she gasp and slam on her brakes and just sit in her car dumbfounded? Did she text her friend, "You won't BELIEVE what he did!!!!"

What if she didn't forgive him? What did he do with the sign? Toss it in the dumpster?  Put it up for auction on ebay for someone else in need of a rather large apology to someone named Sandy? Or is it sitting in a garage somewhere as a sad testament of a bad decison?

But if she did forgive him, still, what did he do with the sign?  Put it up for auction because it saved his relationship with Sandy?  Or did he roll it up and save it *just* in case his actions warranted another 30' apology?  If he did have to bust it out again, did she just come home to it wrapped around her living room?  Drive by it hung from a building?  And then did she call her friend, "He busted out the sign again. Good thing because otherwise he was going to have to sleep outside in the snow."?  Do they joke, "You're going to need the sign for that," or "It's going to take a whole lot more than that stupid sign if you do that," in their daily banter?  Does it just show up in random places around her life?  At work, wrapped around her car, rolled up under her pillow? Falling out of the closet when she opens it in the morning?  Does she have the urge to take it and smack him upside the head with it?  (Wonder if he saw it coming?) 

Is he a decent guy?  Is she a decent gal? Do they even like eachother?  Do they exist? Do any of you know them?  Because I have about a thousand impressions of these two people.  But my biggest question is if the sign even worked. 

Instead of dusting off our flip flops

Apparently this is an annual party that we were invited to this year.  Kind of a big neighborhood joint birthday party, hot dog roast, reason to get together and slide down a big hill on sleds.  They get the team out and get everyone on the sleigh and out to the hill.  (Yes, he uses the team to feed the livestock, too.)

Grace and Calla on one of their first runs. 

The snow was perfect.  Hard enough that we didn't sink into it--all three plus feet of it.  Slick enough that the kids got some good speed.

But Mr. C here didn't really seem to think much of the snow.  He really just wanted a nap.

He did get one.  And Little Miss Calla really wanted a ride on a snow machine.  So I found someone to give her a ride.

I think she liked it.  A lot.

Grace got a ride, too.

She liked it, too.  A lot.

Then we went for another ride on the other sled.

Hey!!  I know that guy!! 


I know it's getting to be the end of March.  But I'm still not tired of the snow.  It's still fun.

And the neighbors are so great to invite us out for a new snow fun experience!

You all can dust your flip flops off whenever you like.  I'm going to keep my gloves and hat handy and go have some more snow fun.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Driven to Doughnuts

For some reason lately Mondays just aren't something I have been enjoying.  This week was no exception.  Like I was telling my friend, I wasn't stirring the pot.  I fell into a pot I didn't know was there and then she tried to save me with the spoon and it could have appeared that we were stirring a pot.

But whatever.  Our friendship is still intact, it's all simmering down now, nobody was hurt, and I was simply driven to doughnuts.  Calla requested them and they sounded pretty good.  So I found a recipe for raised doughnuts.

Now, when I use a recipe, I don't necessarily follow the recipe. My sister-in-law pointed this out to me recently.  A recipe to me is many times merely a guide.  Sometimes the results are good.  Sometimes the results aren't so good.  And sometimes they are somewhere in between.  But 99% of the time, they are certainly edible.

The recipe I found seemed to be a good one.  But I have no yeast.  I have sourdough starter.  And I didn't have enough milk.  But I had some "real" hot cocoa I had made last week.  Good enough for me.

Since I have never made raised doughnuts before, I had no idea what texture the dough should be.  I think mine was not quite firm enough.  And I don't think I let it rise long enough on either rise. 

I also didn't have a doughnut cutter.  So I used a glass and I poked my finger through the middle.

But, even with all that, my results were pleasing.  I called my fellow accidental pot-stirring friend and told her that I loved her enough to make her doughnuts, but not enough to actually take them to her.  She said she'd be by shortly. 

Calla requested chocolate with sprinkles.  That's exactly what she got!

They were different.  Good different.  Kind of bagel-y dense and sourdough chewy, moist, and they had a sourdough crunch to them.  I think I might be on to something here. 

You can be the judge as to whether the kids liked them.  (Or at least whether they liked the chocolate or not.)

My pot-stirring friend called me later to tell me they were the best doughnuts on the planet. And her husband agreed. 

I should try them again sometime.  But next time I should actually take the time to convert it right.  But however it goes, I don't know how anyone could go wrong with deep fried dough rolled in sugar or topped with chocolate and sprinkles.  It somehow has the power to make a Monday gone bad worth powering through. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Fancy Nancy (Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!)

Yesterday Grace brought a note home that brought news of Dr. Seuss' birthday celebration at her school.  There was a party planned and the students were invited to dress up as their favorite story book character. 

Grace wanted to be Grace the Glitter Fairy.  She'd need a pink dress, pink wings, pink tights, pink shoes and a wand.  We didn't have all those things, so I began hoping she'd just forget.

But this morning she got up looking for her costume.  Dangit.

So we went searching for something.  Anything really.

And there at the top of the stairs was a fancy skirt that had been discarded carelessly by a younger sibling.

Fancy.  Oooooo!  Fancy Nancy!

She totally went for it.  And we scrounged around and came up with this costume.

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss.  From our little Fancy Nancy.