Tuesday, August 30, 2016

if I could turn back time...

Our fifteen year old attended freshman orientation tonight. He is ready, but I don't know if I am.

life lessons at the pool

Yesterday, my six year old and I celebrated my last day of summer vacation by heading to the Ellsworth pool together. We were hoping the water slide would be open, but the pool didn't have enough swimmers to open that part up. A very kind boy who is about 10 years old invited O to play football in the pool. Our six year old was thrilled to be approached by a much bigger child and had a wonderful time.

Also playing with the 10 year old was an eight year old who seemed very short in stature. He pulled his body out of the pool and O and I discovered he didn't have the bottoms of his legs. We had a great conversation about how some people are born without full legs, or other body parts. The little boy talked to O and shared that he also has prosthetic legs. When he came out with his "bionic legs"--that was O's term, O decided it was pretty amazing to be born that way.

I hope that is how he always feels and realizes that people are special no matter how they are born.

Monday, August 29, 2016


On Saturday, our family attended the MN state fair to watch the lovely Liana Marie present her demonstration on pigeon showing and to see Kim, Kurt, Sheila, Lukas, Seth, Ryan, Abby, Andrew and Evalyn at the Great MN get together. We also caught a glimpse of Kyeanna's parents as they were working the rabbit show.

After a full day of the fair, we traveled to St. James to visit Mom and Dad at their new home at Homestead Cooperative in St. James. They welcomed us at 9:30pm and then we traveled further west to spend the night at Kurts. Up early Sunday morning for church and then to lunch at the Hometowner in St. James.

Mom and Dad look fully integrated into their new home and it felt like home visiting with them.

Happy to see them settled.

happy birthday dear Betty Jean

Wishing blessings to a wonderful Mom, mother in law, grandma and friend, Betty Jean Olson. You are so caring and giving.
Here is grandma Betty helping her nine and ten year old grand daughters primp at the lake.

Friday, August 26, 2016

riding the rapids with my sweet friend

Bright and early this morning, Brad and I departed Glen Park and paddled our anniversary canoe and kayak about 8 miles. The water was great and we managed to hit the rapids just right. A downed tree downed the canoer and he pulled off to the side to unswamp his canoe.

It was a fun and fast ride down the river.

the tree that swamped the canoe in the background

scary teeth

Yesterday, O had a play date with his buddy Coulter. He woke very early and was telling me his teeth were hurting. This is how he greeted me:
his teeth were back to normal in time for the play date.

workshop baby

Wednesday was the first day of teacher workshop and catching up with my cool staff. Feels great to be back.

zoo exploration

The two youngest and I traveled to Apple Valley on Tuesday to spend time at the MN Zoo. It was so fun to explore together. Dinosaurs and the Tropical Trail were the highlights for us all.

pool time and game on!

On Monday afternoon, I took O and his buddy Wil to the Glen Park pool and then we drove to New Richmond to watch the 9th Grade football team beat the New Richmond Tigers. It was beautiful weather and fun times for the Olsons!

paddle down the St. Croix

Our family had planned on going on a paddle on the Namekogan in northern Wisconsin in the final days before teacher workshop. Plans changed when the weather didn't cooperate, so we paddled down the St. Croix from Interstate Park to Osceola with Ibby. It was a beautiful day and we are so happy we didn't camp in the weather that was on other days.

It was pretty cool to see the geology at Interstate park too. Some stories to take back to my classroom this year.

happy 9th birthday Trenton Anders!

The sweet and smart Trenton Anders has been ushered into the age of 9. Happy birthday to you and wishing you many more years of happiness and health!
on grandma and grandpa's exercise bike before the big move

Saturday, August 20, 2016

great rain

We have had lots of rain in the past couple of days. On Thursday night, we had 3 1/2" here in town and it rained again last night. I went to work at school for a couple of hours this afternoon and started walking home. I stopped at my favorite shop, Treasures from the Heart and as I was shopping, the skies opened up again and it rained plentifully. The temperatures are more fall like as well...I hope summer isn't over!

Friday, August 19, 2016

hlq is 8!

Interesting, fun, athletic and helpful Henry Quintana is 8 years old today. We love you buddy and are looking forward to another year of Henryisms.

moa day

Yesterday, the 2 younger kids and I traveled to the Mall of America to celebrate a fun summer and just hang out. We went to Legoland first and then enjoyed some rides at Nickelodean Universe and dined at the Rainforest Cafe. On our way back to the car, we discovered a shirt our 15 year old might like, found some great deals at Sears--a new backpack for our soon to be Kindergartener at West Side Elementary, a first day of school shirt for him, a pair of flip flops for our 10 year old, some new swim trunks and another shirt for our soon to be high schooler.

We then discovered we were hungry for popcorn and stopped at a yummy popcorn shop called Doc Popcorn. Finally made it to our car and made it home at about 8:30--just before the rains descended upon River Falls.
Big Rigs...a favorite ride of O and K's

Rugrats bumper cars...it was a little frustrating getting the sequence of driving down, but he finally figured it out

olympics 16

Our family has been enjoying snippets of the Olympic games this year. We have mostly been enjoying the swimming and running competitions and got to see Michael Phelps win and also Yusain Bolt..it's amazing to see the endurance of these athletes.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

evening swim

Last night, the kids and I went to Glen Park pool to swim after a warm day of working. Our 10 year old played that she was swimming for the US and our 6 year old was pretending to swim for China. The US usually won the races. It was a beautiful night for swimming.

prepping the classroom

Yesterday my handsome and very strong husband helped design the layout and muscled the heavy furniture into their 2016-2017 places. My beautiful daughter also spent a few hours helping out. It's a family affair.

beautiful weekend

After Pinocchio on Saturday, A, K and I drove up to Grantsburg to join O and Brad. Brent's family and Ibby were also visiting. We enjoyed time in the lake and playing on the Rave, the Lily Pad and the kayak, canoe, paddleboard and paddle boat. Love these dog days of summer

wooden head

The Pinocchio performance was really fun and interesting. The Cricket was spot on and the Constable did her job just right. So proud of the kids and their daring and fun performance.

Thanks to Julie and Libby Thibodeau for coming to the Friday performance.

Friday, August 12, 2016


Stuart and Kyeanna are on their adventure starting yesterday to their new home in VA. Here is a post from my dear brother and also a photo that Kyeanna posted:
We are all loaded and ready for our adventure of moving Stuart and Kyeanna to Quantico, VA. It will be exciting to watch the next chapter in their lives. As parents, we are all sharing the same feelings. In reflection, I have taken great pride in being a father and know that Stuart is very prepared for his next journey. We all should know that freedom isn't free, and owe all servicemen and veterans an extra 'thank-you' as often as we can.

Thursday, August 11, 2016


This week, the River Falls Community Theater will be presenting Pinocchio on the River Falls High School stage through Prairie Fire Theater.

Our fifteen year old is Cricket and our ten year old is the Constable.

Here are photos of the directors and of the logo:
Kevin and Samantha

county fair experience

On Monday, our six year old went to Clover Bud judging with his cookie bars. Thankfully, the kind, Ms. Rasmussen, A's first grade teacher was his judge. She could sense his anxiety related to being interviewed, so asked him questions like, "what was your favorite part"--cracking the eggs and mixing with Crisco and "what was your least favorite part"--measuring and putting in the flour. She also asked "did you help clean up?" and his response was yes--I added, he loved cleaning the extra dough off the paddle ;). Anyway, he received a Clover Bud ribbon.

On Tuesday, our ten year old entered her doll quilt which hasn't yet been judged, was interviewed on her brownies where the judge encouraged her to branch out and try some recipes that aren't family favorites--received a blue ribbon. Her third entry was a crocheted headband where she received a red ribbon. Her fourth entry was her heritage project where she received a blue ribbon.

On Wednesday, our ten year old entered her dress, her photography, her camping poster and her hiking backpack--they weren't conference judged, so we will find out tomorrow her ribbon awards. We also discovered that her heritage project was awarded champion in her age group. What a thrill!

Today we are taking a break from the fair, but will be returning tomorrow to work in the food stand and take another look at the Olson families nine exhibits at the fair.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

18 and life to go

Sweet and spicy and fun and goofy Liana Marie Blomgren entered our world 18 years ago today. I'm so proud and delighted to be your auntie.

Enjoy today and always...
the lovely blond with the large watt smile

Monday, August 8, 2016

happy 74th birthday Bud!

The fun-loving and loyal, Loren Bradley is celebrating his 74th birthday today! Wishing you all the best in the year to come.

Love you much.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

happy 22nd birthday to the newest Blomgren

Warm birthday wishes to the newest Blomgren, Kyeanna wishing you a safe journey to Virginia with your new husband, Stuart, your parents and your father in law.

May joy and happiness bless all the days of your life.
their moving truck to VA

shortly after becoming Mrs. Blomgren

Saturday, August 6, 2016


On August 1, my dear Julie A. Thibodeau and I kayaked down the St. Croix from Osceola to Marine. It was an amazing day with my dear maid of honor!

Here are some photos:


Our 15 year old spent the week at Luther Point Bible camp and thoroughly enjoyed his experience. He was in drama camp and he and his fellow campers made an original play about Nebuchadnezzar where AO played the part of Ned Schneebly. It was fun and had a nice message.

He now wants to be a buddy next summer and experience camp two weeks :) He doesn't even mind having to clean up as a part of the deal.

state fair performers

Oh Thursday, August 4 the River Ramblers performed Annie on stage at the Wisconsin State Fair Youth Expo building. They ended up scoring 98 of 100 and after the fair will be told whether or not they are honored with a top ten performances spot.
the lineup for 8/4--our performances at 12:20 and 5:20

on the air with forecast on a stick with the NBC affiliate in Milwaukee. The reporter was a former 4Her and very kind

the cast

having fun with Maria (Annie), Mannie, Olivia (orphan) and "Duffy" outside the 4H building

fair projects

side seam of dress

dress with substitute ties...just wanted to see how it tied, will be inserting ribbons
Working on Pierce County Fair projects. Sew much fun!

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

cory lee b is 48

Wishing my witty, athletic and winsome big brother Cory a happy 48th birthday. Much love to you!

beautiful birthday wishes to a charming 26 year old

Vance Andrew was born 26 years ago in St. James, MN. Now he owns a home near St. James and has been working fervently on finishing his project. Here are a couple of photos of the nearly finished home:
looking like a beautiful kitchen!

new stairs and carpet
and here he is on the far right at Stu and Kye's wedding--with his siblings living here on earth

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...