Sunday, July 23, 2017

paddle down the Kinni

My favorite paddling partner and I rose early on Saturday morning and took a paddle down the Kinnikinnic. We saw a heron, a muskrat and heard lots of other birds on our 2 hour journey. I love the meandering river that moves pretty swiftly over nice little rapids. Neither of us tipped so we were successful in our journey.

What a great day and the weather couldn't have been better. We are happy we went in when we did--only saw one other kayak and several people fishing. When we went back to get the car, there was a long line up of vehicles.
Brad portaging his canoe down to the landing

ready for our paddle

the lower falls where we put into the river

on the way down river

Saturday, July 22, 2017

she is not a mistake, but that is her role

Our sweet Katie Olson is playing in the River Falls Community Theater production of Cinderella. This is a Prairie Fire Children's Theater production so it means that it isn't the traditional story of's modified.

Katie is playing the part of Mistake #3 where she is a backup singer in a lip-sync contest for a character named Mikey--who is supposed to play the part of Prince Charming. Cinderella ends up winning the contest and having Mikey propose. She refuses his proposal because she is happy being single.

the full case of Cinderella

Mistake #3 with Cinderella

Mistake with her proud Momma

The four mistakes

Friday, July 21, 2017

craving chicken

Our Katie cat is performing in a play this evening and she got to choose the food she would bring for dinner. She chose fried chicken. We went uptown and bought some chicken for Katie and the rest of our family. Osten is currently very concerned that he won't get a chance to eat his chicken. We will eat when it's dinner time...I don't know if that will be soon enough for our 7 year old.


Our family was watching television last night and came across a really great movie about life. The name of the movie was Given--the story of a family told from the perspective of the six year old. This family traveled around the world surfing and living very minimally/spending time together learning from one another. The story crept into my dreams...very cool.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

dental work

This morning I woke Katie and Anders up for dental procedures. Anders had spacers inserted and Katie had an initial consultation for braces and her last two baby teeth extracted. There was some anxiety, but everything went relatively well. Way to got Katie! Tomorrow we will have a more in depth appointment and then from there we will plan a course of action.

t-ball 2017

Osten's team had their last game on Monday night. Here are the times

the camping 2017

the kids working together on sand art at the beach at Hartman

me in the kayak on Hartman
the annual grasshopper picture with real grasshopper drinks

the Dads Jerry and Brad

a selfie on our drive home
We had a really great time with the Knier's and here are a few last photos of our adventure. We are planning another trip in 2018--thinking Washington Island off the tip of Door County.

father's day gift is a hit!

Osten loves the hammock!
Our Father's Day gift to Brad this year was a portable hammock. It was really easy to set up at camp and then was a very popular place for the kids to hang out (literally).

4 kids in a hammock--Katie, Osten, Julia and Jillian

The 8 year old and 7 year old hanging out together--Julia and Osten

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

camping with the Kniers

As we camped this year at Hartman Creek with our dear friends, Jennifer, Jerry, Jillian and Julia, we attempted to piece together our history of camping trips/trips to Lake Michigan fishing.

Anders and Jillian in our first year of camping at Lake Wissota 2006

We started camping together in June 2006 at Lake Wissota
2007 was Lake Wissota again

then we took a break from state park camping.

2014 Blue Mound State Park
2015 Peninsula State Park
2016 Yellowstone Lake State Park
2017 Hartman Creek State Park
in the same camper this time Katie and Jillian having a sleepover 2017

2005 our first trip to Lake Michigan with the Kniers out of Sheboygan
2006 Lake Michigan out of Sheboygan--Brent came with us and we stayed at the Kniers
2007 Lake Michigan fished out of Sheboygan stayed at Kniers Bud, Betty, Brent, Molly and Siri stayed in Sheboygan in hotel
2008 Lake Michigan fished out of Sheboygan and stayed with Kniers--visited them at Plymouth Rock campground, Bruce joined
2009 Lake Michigan fished out of Sheboygan stayed at Plymouth Rock campground in Yurt with Kniers--Shumair joined
2010 Lake Michigan fished out of Sheboygan and camped with camper at Plymouth Rock campground Bruce, Julie, Isaiah, Christina, Ibby, Darrell, Henry, Joe, Dehlia and Osten joined
2011 Lake Michigan Door County at Tranquil Timbers Cory and Joan's family joined
2012 Lake Michigan Door County at Tranquil Timbers Kyle and Kim's family joined
2013 Lake Michigan Door County at Tranquil Timbers
2014 break from Salmon Fishing
2015 Lake Michigan Door County at Tranquil Timbers
2016 Lake Michigan Door County at Tranquil Timbers

2004 Knier's cottage near Tomahawk, Wisconsin
2008 Knier's cottage north of Wausau near Tomahawk, Wisconsin

Thursday, July 13, 2017

marching band notes

As I'm writing today and getting ready for a camping trip to Hartman Creek, I'm hearing our 16 year old practicing marching band a few blocks away. They sound incredible!

happy 11th birthday Joseph P. Q.

Happy happy birthday to our charming, deep thinking, helpful nephew Joe Quintana.
Joe and his Momma celebrating his 10th birthday

Joe at Luther  Point a few weeks ago

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

double braids

I finally learned how to make double french braids on my beautiful daughter's head. She looks enchanting.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

19 reasons why

There are many reasons I love Bradley Cole Olson and the commitment we made to one another 19 years ago today, but here are 19
1. He loves God and believes in Jesus
2. He is funny
3. He loves spending time outside
4. He loves taking care of his family
5. He loves the environment
6. He has a great singing voice
7. He is my workout buddy at 5am during the school year
8. He encourages me to spend time with myself and with my friends
9. He is a great role model for our kids
10. He is active in church
11. He is generous
12. He wants to make the world a better place
13. He is really strong
14. He is a hard worker
15. He encourages us to make sustainable transportation choices
16. He is a great son
17. He took me out to lunch today at Pier 500
18. He played family kick ball with our family tonight
19. He loves to garden

Here is some photos of our big day in 1998:

Monday, July 10, 2017

first day of band lessons

Katie Grace is following in her Grandma B and Grandpa Bud's footsteps by trying  out the clarinet. Today was her first lesson and so far she likes!

paddle down the Croix

On Sunday--Brad, Katie,Osten and I loaded the truck and Prius and traveled north. We dropped the  Prius off in Osceola and drove the truck and big canoe and kayak up to St. Croix Falls to Interstate Park. We put in there and paddled for about 2 hours back down to Osceola.

We saw two big paddle boats, many kayakers and canoeists, some floaters and lots of jumping fish and a few amphibians. The kids and Brad were in the canoe and I was solo kayaking. We put our boats on the beach in Osceola and drove the Prius back up to Interstate to pick up the truck. Then we drove to one of our favorite dining spots...the Village Pizzaria in Dresser and had dinner.

Back to Osceola to put our boats back on the truck and head home to RF.

Gorgeous day and great exercise!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

56 year ago

56 years ago today, my beautiful parents made a commitment to one another to love, cherish and honor until death do they part. Their commitment officially ended on May 28 with the earthly death of my Dad. But their spiritual pairing lives on forever.

Thank you Mom. Thank you Dad for being there for one another.

departing the church as Mr. and Mrs. Blomgren 56 years ago today
their parents--Annie, Nels, Margaret and Clarence

Friday, July 7, 2017

it's in the blood or something

This photo was posted by my cousin Christina. It's a photo of her Dad and my uncle Nels Pierson Jr. in July 1953 as he was about to join the US Marine Corps with his classmates from the Butterfield class of 1952. Nels is pictured 2nd from the left.

Christina also mentioned Stuart as being a current member of the United States Marine Corps. What a great tribute to the service our family has provided.

speedway builders and Pierson family at Valleyfair!

On Thursday, July 6, the three kids and I drove to St. Paul to my cousin Nels' place to pick up his children, Sonya, Nels and Mardoche and their Honda minivan. We were greeted by Nels and Nicole in their parking garage at the OxBo (cool place downtown St. Paul) and we boarded the Odyssey  and drove to Shakopee.

The kids were great passengers and enjoyed getting to know one another. Mardoche was challenging Osten to be quiet and was doing a nice job of motivating him. We arrived at the park and met up with club members and got our passes.

First stop into the park was the Wave...super fun and refreshing. We ended up riding several times throughout the day and got completely drenched each time. We also road Thunder Canyon, Osten rode on several kiddie rides and then we ate lunch with the club. We were generously fed by Sheila Pierson (I was going to purchase lunch in the park) and then club photos were taken.

After lunch we headed to the Water Park--Katie and Osten rode the body slide many times and I proceeded to get get sunburned. I finally talked the kids into trying some roller coasters. Katie loved it and Osten was very upset with me for asking him to try. After reflecting though, he did say would love to try another coaster once he gets to the 48" mark (he's currently at the 46" mark). We then went to get our caricature drawn and then Kim and Sheila came to spend time with Osten while Katie and I rode the old time coaster (my first roller coaster) and the Corkscrew. I love how Katie embraced coasters! We then met up with the rest of the kids and drove them back home to St. Paul.

Anders spent his day with cousins Lukas, Seth, Ryan Pierson, Liana, Ryan Blomgren, Sonya, Nels and Mardoche and counts his time with cousins as the best part of the day. After dropping off the Pierson's and transferring to our car he asked if he would be able to go to the Pierson reunion after he's grown because he really loves to spend time with them all. That was pretty neat to hear. I have a lot of really great memories of spending time with the parent of these kids in 4H and in school so the connections have been passed down.

meeting up with Liana as we were getting ready to enter the park

Osten declaring Mardoche as his new Momma

planning our adventure at the front gates

right after our first drenching at the wave

Speedway Builders club members and some alumni members children

bathing beauty at the water park

wave pool at the water park

our caricature

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

happy independence day!

So I'm stealing a photo from my friend Eryn. It was just so gorgeous I couldn't help posting.

I ran the Freedom 5K in the morning and finished in #333 place in about 31:44--just under a minute slower than last year, but this year I ran without stopping--whoot whoot!

We spent the early afternoon watching the floatilla on Wood Lake and then we drove home to pick raspberries and hear the firecrackers in town.

Happy birthday to my beautiful and independent friend Kari Frances Cassidy!

lake days

We just got back from a fun vacation to the shores of Big Wood Lake. We spent a few nights at Bud and Betty's and a few nights at Ibby Gina's. We played with paddle board, tube, speed boat, kayak, canoe, ski rocket, paddle boat, lily pad, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandma and grandpa, bottle rockets, flairs, and a little 5K race.

Ready for the rest of the summer!

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...