Thursday, December 29, 2011


Snow boarding


The day came. I fell and was very tired after just an hour. Then after a long lunch my love and I decided to give it another try.

Our class was attempting to go up the T-Bar. When your snowboarding you are supposed to put the bar between your legs and hold on to the pole and keep you balance on the board while it glides up the hill. Only since we were all learning how to get on it, the T-bar stopped every few seconds for the next boarder to climb on. We watched our classmates who would then lose their balance and fall and get off the lift.

I went first on the T-bar. (That is the lift in the picture above.) I was doing great and got pretty far up then the lift stopped and I went down. Somehow on the way down my ski pants got wrapped around the bolt on the bottom of the lift bar and as I went down I twisted around around and around as I was dragged up the hill. They shut off the lift fairly quickly but as someone came to help me up I explained that my pants were caught, it got a little awkward. How can a stranger help untwist in that area? Instead I suggested I get up and after a little figuring out, I had him undo my bindings so that I could get out of the board. It took a little while for me to unwind the pants from the lift and when I was free I went off to nurse my wounds. (mental ones, not physical) There were about 8 medics at the bottom of the lift. My love told me they were about to go up and help, they thought I was hurt since I was just laying on the hill.

That ended my snowboarding career. We told the kids the story later and they laughed hard. My oldest said, "You mean that was YOU being dragged up the hill? My class was watching that!" Great... good thing I don't get embarrassed easily. The other two did not see it and were really bummed. Our family has a great sense of humor and it has since been dubbed, Mom pulling a Sponge Bob. "I ripped my pants!"

Friday, December 16, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by Soulemama

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Winter here to stay?

After a false start a few weeks ago it looks like this might be winter. The ski hill is making snow like crazy, and mother nature is helping along. She gave us 8 wet inches the night before last and then yesterday despite the weathermen saying there would be no significant accumulation it snowed 3 more inches of the finest snow I have ever seen. My youngest was blowing it off the porch rails like dandelion fluff.

So begins a new rhythm to the day of shoveling, brushing, and sanding. Our driveway while not appearing steep in the summer is a mountain in the winter. We have to take a run at it to even get up it a little bit. It is not legal to park on the streets here overnight so making it up that drive is a must.

Plus all that driveway snow make the perfect snow tunnels. I'm sure the kids will be working on this one all winter.

We've been getting some help decorating for the holidays. This little one is quite helpful. I love kittens.

My youngest snapped this photo of Momo playing in the tree. Last night after a flurry of present wrapping she got to help some more. An hour after tucking ourselves in I heard a new sound that I could not place.

You know how that goes, your laying in bed, snuggled up, half asleep when that part of your brain alerts you to something it has never heard before? Then you have to make the decision to get up and see what it is or ignore it. Well I chose to ignore it but then the dog went crying by, whimpering all the way out the dog door.

It was Momo, chasing a bow off of one of the presents. I'm not sure why the dog was upset by this but it was quite funny. My theory is if it entertains Momo then she won't be nibbling on my face trying to wake me.

Working on:
• Finishing up knitting a hat for my oldest son, who hasn't had a new hat knit in over a year.
• Stripping the wallpaper off the studio wall.
• Finish removing plywood placed over 100 year old floors at the stair landing.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Loving today...

My new favorite corner of my home, with the skeins of yarn waiting patiently to become something warm.

Our annual Christmas village decorating all got put out and arranged just right.

And this boy with his very first pie. I'm sure it won't be his last.

I am also loving today:

• boat horns in the morning and watching the bridge lift to it's highest heights to let the boat pass under.

• snow capped hillsides with brightly color houses.

• fleece lined longies and fleece vests, to keep me warm.

Friday, December 02, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by Soulemama

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

We really lucked out this week. I have been planning a kitchen remodel that we keep putting off and have already picked out a range and new fridge. So the other day after fighting with my cheapskate range I decided to pull up the one I had picked out on the internet and drool over it. I was just floored when I saw it was on sale for $300 off! A quick, can we buy it? And it was ordered. It arrived two days later and unlike the last range we installed where it took us a month to get the electrical rewired, all I had to do was move the cord from the old one to the new one. And an hour later we were making biscuits!

I came back into the room to check on how they were cooking with the convection on and this is what I saw, so I went to grab my camera. He was camped out in front of it watching it like it was the best tv show ever.

I guess compared to the last range where there was no window in the door or light this was exciting. I am excited that the range has a timer! I know little things! But now I don't have to go all over the house looking for my little digital timer that always seems to wander off. The little things, like bottoms of biscuits that aren't burnt are wonderful.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Start of Winter

We think this must be the start of winter. The 8 inches of snow are not the first hint, we imagine with an average of 300 inches that's just the beginning. No the hint was that they started making snow of the ski hill yesterday. To see those puffs of snow coming out just brought excitement that soon we will get to strap on snowboards and go.

We are learning and watching from the neighbors how to pull off this winter thing. I've watched several neighbors pull out their snow blowers and start them up. My favorite thing is to see all the homemade ways they use for protecting the bushes and small trees from heavy snow. It can be a simple as tying the bush together like you would bag up a Christmas tree. There are some lovely wooden tee-pee's that look like they have been dragged out every winter to protect precious rose bushes.

The first thing we knew we had to purchase was a Yooper Scooper. This is a very large metal scoop that you just push through this fluffy white stuff and fling into your yard. We haven't gotten the technique quite down but it does clear a large amount of snow quickly.

The only issue we have had so far is with our cat.
He is usually a calm, loving cat. Since we have moved here and gotten a new kitten he has gotten increasing more grumpy. He also has been spending most of his time outside. That all changed last week with the first four inches of snow. He still insists on going out at least once a day but now instead of trekking out to find squirrels and chipmunks to torment, he goes on his super quick route and back in within 15 minutes. His new routine is to go off the front porch, under the car and back to the back porch where he curls up into a ball and puffs himself out.

Monday, November 21, 2011


I worked on the entry this weekend, along with starting on our studio. We are itching to get to work, sewing and drawing in there. We are quite happy had the entry way turned out! There is so much more room for coats now! Plus boot trays! Which are full.

I love that this cost us so little. The only things I needed to buy were the folding clothes drying rack and the boot trays. I repurposed a shelf from the previous owners and painted it along with a 2x4 left over from some other project. We had the hooks as I had the foresight to buy extra at Ikea before we moved. Can you ever have too many hooks? I'm out now so if you live by Ikea send more please.

I mounted the drying rack right above our heater vent and it's enough to dry out most of gloves depending on how wet children have gotten them.

Now we just need to sand, prime and paint the floor and stairs and it will be completed for now.

Friday, November 18, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by Soulemama
this moment

Thursday, November 17, 2011

First snow

We had our first snow. Before the snow even flew I found my dream of the mudroom off the kitchen was not going to work. I forgot something as simple as heat. There is no heat in there. Not only that there are two broken windows under a board, a door, and a dog door, so I don't think we want to store our frozen coats there.


This is not working for me either. There are no boot trays and boots make wet floors. Not to mention the mess of mittens, hats and such. I have a plan and am working on it. The same room is a mess visually because of the stairs also. We removed the carpet on the stairs and are left with stairs with soul, but they are crying to be loved.

Stairs uncovered

I feel like I am starting a never ending battle with snow, melt, wet, drying gloves, hats etc. We are all learning very quickly about life up here in the Yooper. They really do feel like it's not a proper snow unless it's over 6 inches. We were told after the first snow that it might indeed be the last snow you can build snowmen with. Today we found the new fresh 4 inches to be very light and powdery, which makes easy shoveling off of the upper deck. Not to mention the beautiful view.


We were hoping that we would have a canal view in the winter and we do indeed. You can see it from both the upstairs, and the office on the main floor. A bonus we have found is that you can also get a peek a boo view of the ski hill too.


Enjoy the rest of your week, I am enjoying the white out right now from the office window.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Hello... I've missed you.

I would love to post more but my love took my camera up to work, and I've been sick with a cold this week, so we have not moved from the house. No projects have been done, and although we did escape last Sunday to drive to the Lake for my love to see the leaves changing, we forgot the camera.

I have been spending a ton of time planning, drawing, redrawing, erasing, starting over, changing and staring off into space over a big kitchen update. The kitchen that came with this house has 1 usable lower cabinet and 2 upper cabinets.
It has the cheapest range you can find, and the cheapest fridge.

This has lead to many problems for me, someone who enjoys cooking several times a day. The oven has no window in it, no light and no real temperature control. It seems to take over 30 minutes to warm up and when it is finally warm enough it burns everything but leaves the middles raw. It's like it turns on and never figures out how to turn off. What is really fun is when you put on a tea kettle, which since it's been getting down into the 40's and we've been battling colds, has been frequently. So I get the kettle whistling and move it from the back burner up to the front. When I do this the whole top of the stove pops up from the expansion of the metal due to the heat. It is crazy! I've never seen a stove with so much movement, it's like one of those metal popper toys. Only it's much much bigger.

The fridge... this was a vacation home, and the fridge is the size of one. I think I am taller then the fridge. I'm very short. The fridge has wire racks. I hate wire racks. Already the door storage area has fallen off three or four times. The storage drawers are not in their tracks either. There is not enough room in it for a weeks worth of food, which means I go to the store more often. I hate going to the store. I'd rather be cleaning my toilet then going to the store. Really. I hate it that much.

So the immediate plans are to redo the kitchen. I really was not wanting to use IKEA cabinets again. I've done two kitchens with these cabinets and have not gotten to use the kitchen more then a few months. Would that jinx this kitchen too? Actually since we just put in an Ikea kitchen less then six months ago, we are really not in a hurry to do it again, but for the money you just can't get as good as cabinets and let's face it. I am in love with Ikea base cabinets with the huge big drawers. I love drawers in the lower cabinets.

So I'm doing the dreaming and planning and my love does the veto's and tries to talk me into spending more then I want to. He is so picky. You can
Follow Me on Pinterest and you will see what kinds of things I will be thinking about.

I hope to get my camera back today and my energy level is slowing coming back. I'll see you all next week with pictures of the finished bedrooms upstairs.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The most amazing sunsets

Our seasons are really starting to change here, we had our first frost already and I have been watching the trees across the canal change color daily. We have also had the most amazing sunsets. They really do take your breathe away, and I feel honored to be able to watch them every night.



The changing of the temperatures have brought a new sense of scrambling here. We had to hurry and install a dog door in the kitchen door so that we could close it to the unheated mudroom. The heating system here needs ducts opened, sealed up and figured out which ones work and which ones don't. We haven't even begun to think about which windows need caulked or where insulation needs to be tucked in. I am hoping that we have at least four more weeks before it snows.

The biggest change for us is going to be getting used to colder temperatures. My kids have forgotten South Dakota, and wool socks, sweat shirts and pants. Instead the walk around in true Texas fashion in their shorts and a blanket thrown over their shoulders. It seems every morning the last few days I have had to remind them to go put on more clothes. Along with clothes the thermostat will be changing here. Gas is quite a bit more to be delivered to a rural location and I have heard that it's not unusual to have over $400 a month in gas bills. Since we are not sure where we will land we have been keeping the heat as low as we can. That is not very low for northerners (63 during the day, 60 at night) but when your used to 70-67 it is a good change. We hope to work our way lower throughout the winter. I know our friends in Texas are shivering just thinking about it.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Walking the town

Our car had a problem last week and it was not drivable. That meant we had a week with no car. That was a huge problem in our last house, but here it was really not that big of deal, once I got over the shock of it. The thought of being stuck in the house for a week made us get creative.

First we moved here to get active, second it is not hot here. We walked the mile to the library to return books, and on the way took pictures of our town to share.
The canal at the end of the block.

We were not thinking about the hike back up the hill afterwards though and we ended up sharing backpack duty. We must have had 25 pounds of books in it.
We can see the ski hill the closer we get to the library.

The next day we were running very low on food so when my love got home from work we grabbed the wagon and headed to the grocery store. It is a half a mile up the hill which meant an empty wagon up the hill, a full one down. It was quite an easy walk and we all felt better after getting out and walking so much.
Some of the lots in town are empty and filled with boulders. We have one just like this in the basement.

We repeated that process several times, to the flea market, the feed store, Walmart (which was over a mile away), and finally we got the car back. Hurrah!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Mine tour

We took a mine tour last weekend,
It was really neat to see into the mining lives of the local copper miner especially since the houses on our block are mining houses.

We started in the Shaft Hoist House. This giant wheel is what pulled not only the copper ore to the surface but also the miners themselves. It was quite impressive that there were 96 levels to this mine and I can not imagine riding a wooden sled down all those levels pulled up and down by a guy operating this.
Hardhats, they are all the rage.

We then moved outside to the cog tram and rode it down the hill to the entrance that was opened up in the 1970's. The tram ride was fun but slow.


In the mine. My love was quite relieved to see that you could see the some outside light.

An ore cart. It never occurred to me it would be so hard to take pictures underground. The flash liked to bounce of the closest object but not light the further objects. Lesson learned.

Friday, September 09, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by Soulemama


Thursday, September 08, 2011

House Tour

On the main floor
The Kitchen
Our kitchen is so tiny. The fridge is tiny. This was a vacation home, not a home with 3 growing kids. I see a new kitchen in our future but for now we are going to have to make it work.

The Laundry Room
I had to laugh when I uploaded this picture because my laundry room has not looked like this since the day we took ownership of the house. Mine is always full of dirty laundry, LOTS of dirty laundry. The number one thing that bugs me about this room is that the kitchen is tiny and there is no storage, this room being in the kitchen would be the best place to store all those appliances you don't use often. BUT there are NO shelves! So shelves are on the TO DO list.

This rooms paint is not the green color that appears, my daughter calls it baby poop color, and really it is. I have not even thought of painting yet since we need to get the bedroom walls finished so everyone can move into their own rooms. This will be where the second TV will be kept with the gaming systems, and most of our books.

The New Studio is right off the Library. It was a second mini kitchen (the same size as the main kitchen) but we already donated the little stove,extra fridge,and the table. We will use it for an art and sewing studio when we finally get unpacked. The sink will be perfect for this!
Or for keeping kittens occupied.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day weekend we spent trying to get out of the house and into the reason we moved here.

We headed up the coast that we have not gone yet, and we were not disappointed!