First Days

So it's been three months since my last post and two months since this event actually occurred ... but whatever.

Although I failed to blog about my kids' first day at school in a timely fashion, I did NOT fail to take pictures of the blessed event.

I still can't believe I have a kindergartner ... so bizarre:

What the? How can he look so grown up one minute ...

... but only 15 minutes later look so small?

It was seriously mad chaos that morning. Kids and parents everywhere, crying, clinging to one another. Am I an insensitive mother if I didn't cry? I mean, I thought I would. I even tried to get a little verklempt, feeling like it was an appropriate response to one's oldest "leaving the nest." But after about twenty seconds, I realized I was perfectly okay with it. I guess because he was okay with it.

A few days later, we got to experience Ruby's first day of preschool. She's always been our more "reserved" child so I wasn't quite sure how she would respond. Luckily, she's going to the preschool where Henry went so it only took us two years to warm her up to the idea.

 She sure was excited about being the main figure behind the lens. It was {FINALLY} her big day!

Roughing up her little brother one last time ...
Yes, that is a plastic croissant in his mouth. Don't ask ....

Look at my little people. Aren't they adorable?

I couldn't help but feel an overwhelming sense of nostalgia as I took this picture. Two years ago, Ruby was the little one on the right, clutching all her precious crap she couldn't leave home without, while Henry was ready to venture off and blaze his own preschool trail.  


Anyhoo, here's my little lady making her way in the big, wide world (with the prerequisite ginormous backpack):

That's odd. I'm suddenly feeling a little verklempt.


On the Road ... Again

I don't even know how many days we've spent away from home this summer, and still it continues. We're currently in Utah staying with Scott's family for a few days before heading out on our annual river trip down the South Fork of the Boise River. 

I figured before I post about that (if I actually ever get around to it) I should probably (finally!) upload posts from our day float a few weeks ago.

We got a sitter for Abram and took Henry and Ruby for a short float down the Gallatin River near our house.

The Launch (I sure hope this craft is seaworthy):

Starting off the float like any respectable person does: with lunch and cold Diet Coke.

"It's a helluva day at sea, Sir!" (Name that movie)

 She was a little nervous at first and clutched my knee for the first half of the trip:

 Reaction to the first small set of rapids:

Ruby finally loosened up with the help of some not-so-liquid courage. We discovered her artificial courage comes in the shape of an Oreo:
 (She was saying, "MORE!")

 Poor kids:

My turn at the helm. Don't mean to brag, but I'm kind of a big deal:

Wish us luck on our next adventure -- the kids are staying home as the water gets MUCH bigger. Cross your fingers no one flips their boat!


It's Now or Never

Just to remind you -- the fabulous Lindsay at Just My Blog is doing a giveaway for one of my hats and it ends TODAY (@ 11:59 p.m. to be precise)

So if you haven't entered yet, get over there and enter! 

Do it!


Don't make me count! 

Fine, have it your way...

5 ... 4 ... 3 ... 2 ... 

(Please don't feel like I'm patronizing you by using my formidable counting threat that I use with my children. It works for them, figured I might as well try it on you.)


7 Years Today

Not only is it Norwegian Independence Day and Scott's brother's birthday -- it's my anniversary.

And I can't think of anyone I'd like to share it with more than the guy who wears a "Wildlife Matters" pin on his jacket.

Because really, like Metallica once said, "Nothing else matters ... besides wildlife." (Okay, maybe they didn't actually say that and maybe a few other things matter but just go with it.)

Here's to 70 more. Bring on the wildlife.


Summer in Montana is Like the Little Engine that Could

It's supposed to hit 70 degrees here today! Woot woot!

Even though that little tidbit alone is cause enough for serious celebration, I have even BIGGER NEWS!!!!!
(No, I'm not pregnant so stop spreading rumors.) 

The talented and funny blogger, Lindsay @ Just My Blog is doing a GIVEAWAY for one of my jane henry hats!

So get on over there and win yourself a hat!!!!

It could be this one ...

 Or this one ...

 (Isn't my nephew the cutest?! The mischievous cheesy grin on that boy gets him out of so much trouble!)



Here's one of the best things about being a mother ... (and I'm pretty sure God made my children sign a waiver before coming to Earth, relinquishing all rights to this part of their body):

(See how he's so nonplussed at the pinching? He was seriously concentrating on a game yet my cheek pinching is a simple fact of life around here. He's so used to it he could probably win the Scripps National Spelling Bee with me hanging off his face.)

I could do this all day. And sometimes I do. 


West Coast Gangster

Although she's neither from the coast nor an initiated gangster, she certainly looked like one the other day while playing outside.

Sweet tat...

(See what I mean? Total gangsta)

Graffiti artist-in-training...
(Remind me, are sky blue, pretty pink, sunshine yellow,
and light green colors for the Crips or the Bloods?)

Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go help Ruby lay down some rhymes for her debut gangsta rap album. Trust me, it's gonna be off the hook.

West SiiiiiiiIIIIIIIDE!


A Happy Birth/Earth Day

Today is my one and only's birthday. 

Like I said last year, and like I say every year, Earth Day was created for him ... or he was created for Earth Day.

My favorite environmentalist ... born on Earth Day. Truly, the stars aligned that day.

This is one of my favorite pictures of him ... just caught in the moment ... just being his natural hot self. (Disclaimer: I actually dry heave a little it when girls blog about how hot/gorgeous/perfect/stunning their husbands are ... but somehow I can't help myself when looking at this picture.)

Happy Birthday Babe. We love you!


Mini Mozart

So he's a musical genius apparently.

I can't say that I'm surprised ... 

I mean he's just so cute ...

And funny ... 

And those are the only two qualifying criteria for musical prodigies, right?



This is all Abe does now.

Throw things.

Sometimes it's funny.

Sometimes it's not.

Like when it's food ... or my clean laundry ... or the dog's water bowl ....


Happy Easter!

May your Easter be filled with the true joy and hope that only the message of 

Happy Easter!


Two Tortoises and a Microphone

(Disclaimer: There's actually no microphone in this post; I just really like the play on the awesome title of that song.)

 While we were in Utah a few weeks ago, our friends Jason and Sarra watched our kids for us while we went to Scott's cousin's wedding luncheon. As natural born biologists, they both work for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, wherein Jason has been assigned the privilege and dubious honor of ... fostering desert tortoises. 

At the present time they are housing two lovely specimens, who luckily enough woke up from hibernation the day we showed up. What gracious hosts, those tortoises. 

Henry quickly claimed the male tortoise, Jabo (yaw-bo) as his own.

The second tortoise, the female which Ruby naturally claimed, was still nameless. Ruby, however, was determined to fix that. By the end of their three hour visit, she had come up with a fantastic name: Jabo #2.

 Seriously, they were FASCINATING to watch.

Ruby became so accustomed to them she eventually just sat herself down and let them crawl all around her as she busied herself with something equally as exciting ... a dead plant.

The herpetologist himself ... double-fistin' his foster tortoises

Thanks Jason and Sarra for babysitting and for giving your tortoises a stern talking to about waking up from hibernation to put on a sweet show for the kiddies!

"Spring" Break

So Montana's got the right idea with "Spring" Break -- it's a week long. But my question is: How many kindergartners actually need a whole week off from school? The stress of coloring within the lines just gettin' to those little guys?

Montana's only problem, and the reason I put "Spring" in quotations, is that March IS NOT Spring in Montana. Try May. Or early June.

Whatever. Point is, we took advantage (even though none of us are actually "school age") and headed to Utah while Scott went to D.C. for the week.

Here's what went down:

Abram worked on his belated, but celebrated nonetheless, skill of crawling:

 Abram "drunkenly" cuddled with his Aunt Kate ... a lot.

He also proved that it is not only acceptable but downright imperative to eat breakfast while wearing a M-I-C-K-E-Y hat.

We were able to go to Scott's cousin's wedding in the Salt Lake Temple. The weather was gorgeous, the grass was green, and flowers were out. I think if I were a day, I would be that day ... all sunny and warm-like.

Scott only has four cousins on his dad's side so we were so happy we could be there. The happy couple and the other Christensen clan:

So between the Mickey breakfast attire, cuddling, and a wedding -- our nine days passed too quickly.