Monday, August 31, 2015

happy anniversary B&B

What a lovely day to get married! Happy Anniversary to one heck of a couple and really amazing in-laws and grandparents.

Happy anniversary Bud and Betty!


Yes, my brother Kurt has endured more than anyone should, but he continues to have a strong faith and to share his gifts with others. This is from a post on FB

I cannot even begin to imagine the emotions this man has felt over the last eight months and yet he continues to be a mentor and supporter of youth. His obvious faith in God keeps him strong and encouraging. Watonwan county 4-H is better because of him. Alissa is very grateful to him for giving her the opportunity to show Ross's cattle. Thank you Kurt Blomgren.

Saturday, August 29, 2015


Mr. O started his soccer club experience this morning! Thankfully he is on the same team as his good friend Wil and he followed directions beautifully and seemed to enjoy the experience. Go big guy go!

Friday, August 28, 2015

ok, I laughed

I went out with some girlfriends last night to the movie Trainwreck. It is not a movie I would watch with my Mom, but I have to admit, it was really funny!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

70 years ago today

Life magazine published one of the most widely recognized photos of all time. It was published on page 27.  Here it is:
Sailor in Times Square on VJ day (August 14, 1945) kissing a dental hygienist who happened to be on a break

On August 27, a sweet little girl was born in Grand Forks, North Dakota named Betty Jean Swanson. Her proud parents Clarence and Grace and big brother Rodger welcomed her to their family.

Happy birthday Betty, this photo is not the only iconic event that occurred 70 years ago today.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


While camping in the BWCA, K and I shared a large cot. It was cozy sleeping with my sweet daughter. To fit on the cot, we both had to sleep on our sides. One morning, as I awoke, there was some writing on my arm. It looked like Blomgren written backwards. I then realized that my special bracelet  that I wear on my right wrist "Ross Blomgren Forever In Our Hearts" had made an impression on my left arm.

It was a lovely reminder of our special nephew and Godson that left this world so early in his life.
We love you Ross and you will be forever in our hearts.
photo from the last time I saw his face...2 weeks before his last day..wearing the shirt he will wear forever

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

doctor's office

When I arrived home to pick up my yoga mat at noon, K and O were playing doctor with sock monkey. They had tape, ziplock bags of water and a stick rigged up to provide an IV to a very ill monkey.

When I got home after an afternoon of staff development and working in the classroom, the front yard was rigged with two chairs, a tv tray, a first aid kit, a doll bed and the tray filled with a tweezers, a magnifying glass and some bandages.

The doctors are ready to start a business.

Monday, August 24, 2015

first day of workshop

Today was our first official day of teacher workshop. I started the day with a pretty well organized space and left it a little less organized because I was actually placing materials were they belong on shelves. I also scored a new bookcase from my lovely friend Maggie.

It was great to reconnect with the staff, but I sure did miss seeing A, K, O and B during the day...motivation to get everything squared away during my designated work time.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

celebration of life

Today, our friend Melina and former co-worker hosted a gathering to celebrate her husband Dimitri's life. It was really quite lovely and it was wonderful to see Melina and talk about her adventure in Greece this past school year. I didn't know Dimitri well, but I know he loved life and would have enjoyed the celebration of his life.

home again

Day 5 dawned bright and beautiful, which was welcomed as we needed to pack the tent and preferred to pack when it was dry. We said goodbye to Mouse Island as A and I paddled the canoe back to the landing. It was a really long adventure with the first part being an easy paddle and the second part being very windy. A kept in great spirits and I was getting a little frustrated. It was such a relief to see the shore and the landing!

We loaded up and were on the road at about noon and ate lunch at Sven and Ole's Pizza in Grand Marais. I had never been downtown and it was quite lovely. We had thought of stopping for ice cream, but we were pretty stuffed so said we would stop in Two Harbors. On our way to Two Harbors, one of our tires blew on the boat trailer. Thankfully, we had a spare and were stopped next to a really nice place that had an air compressor and a really kind gentleman. We were able to fill the spare (it was low) and the two youngest had a lively conversation with him. We were back on our way, destination Super Walmart in Superior to get a new spare and replace the other tire that looked like it's life was also limited.

We made it to Superior, bought some Klondike bars at Walmart and rolled on to Grantsburg to eat dinner with Bud and Betty, drop off Henry and pick up O. We did get a little rain while in Grantsburg and beat the rain home in River Falls. We all climbed into bed thankful for clean, dry, mouse-free living :).

Great adventure, but home is sure sweet!

waiting to load the boat

happy to be heading home

after eating at Sven and Ole's...Lake Superior in the background

day 4 and happy birthday Trenton Anders!

Day 4, which happened to be our Godson, Trenton Anders' 8th birthday, was glorious with just one small rain shower. Breakfast of granola, lunch of sandwiches and dinner of hobo dinner--bacon, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, mushrooms was enjoyed by all.

Our day mainly consisted of gathering firewood for our first and only campfire, hiking, discovering more islands, fishing, scoping out a campground for next year (closer to great fishing on the west end), and the delightful campfire. We also enjoyed observing the little mice and finding where they lived.

During the day, we remembered it was Trenton's birthday and thought of him and wished him a very happy 8th birthday.
photo of Trenton on his 8th birthday!

wood gathering

trying a new tool

being serenaded with Wizard of Oz songs

buddies finding a nice campsite on Gold Island off the coast of Long Island

yummy dinner

wake up sleepy head--every morning, the two other would ask "when can we wake him up?"

here comes the sun!

gorgeous campfire

day 3 of our adventure

four of us traveled to "Rock Point" to hike and discover the outcropping. We invented the names of most of the places we visited

Henry with his knife

discovering a small cave and the alternate entrance

canoeing to a small island we named wind island

Wind Island from the water

discovering "Rose Pine island"

the double rainbow...lovely

getting some fishing in late on day 3
Day 3 we discovered our mice liked the toilet paper and also eating apples and bananas. We ate bacon and eggs for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch and dined on pancakes and fish for dinner. While eating dinner, a lovely double rainbow formed. For days 2 and 3 it rained a fair amount and it was really grand to see a rainbow.

Hiking and fishing were the main activities during the day and more card playing and book reading occurred in the night. The youngest 2 campers and the eldest took a dip to clean was very invigorating!

day 2 and Hen dog's 7th birthday

Day 2 was when we discovered a tiny bit of mouse droppings in one of our bags--the bag that held towels. Thankfully, we had battoned down our food well enough that no food was lost.

Breakfast of eggs and sausage and then we did a little exploring of the mainland that was right across the water from us. It started raining mid-afternoon while we were out fishing.  We enjoyed a dinner of pork roast in the dutch oven with veggies. We weren't able to make a fire for Henry's birthday, but we snuggled in and read some stories/played cards/whittled sticks.

Here are photos from day 2 and Henry's birthday!
fishing near the western shore of Saganaga

whittler of knives, swords and walking sticks

Henry wielding his birthday "knife"

Happy birthday Handsome!

day one of adventure

Our goal was to be on the road at 7am and we were on the road at about 7:05am. We departed River Falls and were ready to put into Saganaga at 3:59pm. We hitched the canoe to the motor boat and started our journey to find our campsite on what we have affectionately named "Mouse Island". We found our four night home at about 5:04pm. A made a motion like a Sand Person from Star Wars declaring it our home away from home.

We set up the tent, had a dinner of mac and cheese, hotdogs and peas and snuggled onto our cozy cots and went to sleep. During the night, we had some visitors (hence the name mouse island).

getting giddy on the ride north (brother not amused)

the start of the trail

on our way to camp

sand person greeting

unloading the boats

tent erected!

Monday, August 17, 2015

bound for boundary

We are once again bound for the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. We will be leaving very early tomorrow morning, so I had better hang up my blogging hat and hit the hay. O is up north at G&G Bud and Betty's and we are bringing Henry with us in exchange. Thanks to Jen and Garth Mueller for lending us two cots for comfortable sleeping as we discovered a few of our cots were not going to endure the weight of any sleepers.

Here are a couple of favorites from the 2014 trip:

class list!

On Friday, before we even drove to Butterfield, K and I got up very early to see her class list at Greenwood Elementary. She was pretty excited to see that she was going to be with Ms. Brittain this year!

Next we went to the Pierce County Fair to work at the 4H food stand and then K went home with her friend Ellea to attend her birthday party. They went to a place in Hudson where people make artwork. It was the coolest birthday party I've ever seen. Maybe that is where birthday 10 will take place.

the main parade

The main parade at the Bee was fun to watch. We got to see Stu drive by on Dad's C and sat with Mom, Kyle, Adam, Kim, Liana and Kourtney. Earlier in the day, A and I had the opportunity to wash trays at the First Lutheran church stand. It was fun to see people/visit while working.

We also got a chance to visit with Stuart about his training...I am so proud of him to finish such and arduous duty. Way to go Stuart Martin!

silver reunion

The class of 1990 from Butterfield-Odin had their 25th class reunion this weekend. We started at 4pm near Kassota, MN at a lovely spot called Chanchaska winery. Cory, Heather, Steven, Kari, Troy, Brad and myself met there.

Then we went to the Loose Moose in Mankato and met Tami, Steve's wife Wendy, Gay, her husband, Charles, Heidi, Lisa, Meridee, John and Matt. Matt was the representative from the class of 1991 and Gay was the rep from 89. We dined, sang karaoke (Charles, Heidi and Troy were especially talented) and enjoyed one another's company. We arrived home to Mom and Dad's house at about 2am, which indicates a nice time out for Brad and I. The kids were home and sleeping when we got back "home".

Thanks Mom and Dad and to the class of 90 for a great evening!

myself, Gay, Kari and Tami

Heidi and Charles rocking the karaoke!

swimming in Lindstrom

Last night, Osten, Brad and I drove to Lindstrom, Minnesota to see the River Falls Wildcats face Spring Lake Park and the Wildcats of Chisag...