My Family

My Family

Friday, May 27, 2011

The "beginning" of summer.....Larson style.

So here we are, Memorial Day weekend.  The unofficial beginning of summer.  Up until a couple of years ago, we didn't really do a whole lot to celebrate this weekend.  And then.....we were bit by the camping bug. Our close friends, the Johnsons, invited us to join them a couple of summers ago.  I was not a big "outdoorsy" gal up until this point, and I was definetly hesitant to do it.  The kids, however, could not wait!!  So we loaded up our van and borrowed a pop-up camper, and off we went.  What followed was a weekend fill with sun, water, laughter, food, friends....and oh yes, beer. It was relaxing and filled with activity all at the same time.  By the time our weekend came to an end, the kids did not want to go home and I admit, I was kind of sad too.
So, I have spent the better part of this week preparing for our annual adventure to Lake Hendricks in Riceville Iowa....gotta spend a little time in the hubby's old stomping grounds, ya know?! Jimmy has been in Chicago for work all week, so that left the monsters and I to put together a list and get to work. 
First on the list....dig for worms!!  That's right, I sent them out with shovels and a styrofoam cooler filled with dirt.  You wouldn't believe how expensive worms are!!  Not to mention that young boys lose more than they actually get on the hook.  Also on the list, pack all the clothes, sand toys, bubbles, fishing poles, bikes, sleeping bags, chairs, lots of food...and my famous tuna salad. The van is packed and ready to go, granted I can barely see out the back window....a lot of stuff to get through one weekend!!  It's almost time to get the kids from school and we're off!!  I won't see my children much in the next few days, except for when they're hungry. My husband will be out in the boat with his buddies. And me?????  Well, I will be in a paddleboat with my girl Jenny and a cooler full of Nordeast!!!  That's how we start summer....Larson style.  Have a very Happy Memorial weekend, and stay safe!!

The fabulous Miss A at Lake Hendricks last Memorial Day.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Days like today.....

It is a beautiful spring day in Southeastern are my thoughts on days like today.

On days like today, all my dreams of moving south to warmer weather go right out the window. I love looking up at that big blue sky and close my eyes as the sun warms my face (my family is familiar with this strange behavior, as I grin like a lunatic while doing it). Days like today are perfect for wiggling my bare toes in the grass and take in the smell of a fresh mowed lawn (okay, and the manure down the road, but still). I will find every reason possible to NOT do housework and spend my day putzing outside (yet here I sit typing, ha!). On days like today, I can't wait for the kids to get home so we can go hiking, or to the park, or just bounce on the trampoline together. I look forward to a bonfire at night, while roasting marshmallows with my family and listening to my children's laughter.
Days like today, I look at all the beauty surrounding me and think about my Grandpa Huber, who was an amazing artist and loved capturing all of it. I miss going to the park at Grandma Huber's house and drinking crystal light lemonade with her (our minus the vodka of course). I realize how lucky I am, and am so thankful that I have another day like this to enjoy.
Days like today, I think about my dad and how amazing it is that he is with us another spring.  I think that I shouldn't complain about my condition when there is such wonder to behold outside. On day like's pretty amazing to be alive.
On that's too damn nice, I am going to play outside and wait for the school bus!!!


Friday, May 6, 2011

My "mom" thoughts...

It is hard to believe that another year has passed so quickly, here we are at Mother's Day weekend again.  When I think about being a mom, there are lots of little things that pop into my head. Like, the sweet smell of a new baby or the sound of my daughter's "belly laugh" (it sound an awful lot like mine...poor girl) I think of Cameron's dimples, and Seth's dazzling smile.  I think about my mom threatening to give us "puppy kisses"...with her teeth out (yea, I know...weird, but one of my favorite memories). I think of Grandma Peterson taking us blueberry picking, and force feeding us raspberry zingers, or of Grandma Huber's crazy clothes and love of clowns.
Each of the mom's in my life have taught me so many things, and not just my mom and grandmothers...but my dear friends.  My friend Bobbie, has taught me that humor is the only way to make it through some days. My dear Mikelene has taught me that moms are so much stronger than they even know (including herself). My friend Kirsten has taught me that even while dedicating yourself completely to your children you can pursue your dreams and achieve anything.
And while I still struggle to figure out this whole mom thing, I have finally come to terms with the fact that I don't know it all....and I never will. Do I worry about the future? Every damn day! Am I scared?  Absolutely!!  But that is the best part sometimes. 
So for mothers day, I thought of not just what it takes to be a mom, but what it takes to be a told to me (or demonstrated) by some of my favorite goes.

-A girl must never go out without looking and feeling her best.  (Grandma Huber)
-It okay to play in the dirt, do grunt work and sweat....a good man will admire that. (my momma)
-Always, always, always show your partner how much you love them. (Grandma Peterson)
-Never leave the house without some sort of girly scent on. (Mom and my bff Bobbie)
-Don't be afraid of a little sparkle. (Grandma H., royal moms, and Melchelle)
-"Don't you worry about what those f*#@ers say, you are beautiful!"(Grandma Huber)
-With cute underwear and a sexy bra, even in your grubbies you feel sexy! (Mom)

Those are just a few...I really have to start writing more stuff down!  I hope you all have a fabulous Mother's Day!  I will be enjoying mine walking in the Race for the Cure, in honor of my daddy.  K

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Turns out my thumb isn't brown.....

As a kid, many of my spring/summer memories include watching my mom produce amazing, bountiful gardens. I never could understand what it was about gardening that she loved so much until I turned 30. It was then that I finally ended my quarter life crisis and realized that many of the things I learned as a kid are truly enjoyable for me, gardening included.
This wasn't always the case. I very rarely helped out with yard work. Mom would throw out names of flowers and plants and I would pretend to know what she was talking about while thinking "Really Mom, can you just tell me what color they are?" My senior year of high school I redecorated the room I shared with my sister...this is back when "southwestern" motifs were big.  So, I decided that my new "southwestern" room would be incomplete without a cactus.  Who can kill a cactus right??  Well, this girl did....much to my embarassment.  This is when I proclaimed myself a brown thumb.  This did not stifle my attempts to do what my  mom could do...many philodendrons, spider plants, and palms later....I was still unsuccessful.
4 years ago, we moved into our house and needless to say, there was ALOT of yardwork to do.  I was frightened!!  I began searching for flowers, researching trees and how to care for a lawn. I bought plants, transplanted flowers from Mom's amazing garden and raked until my arms fell off.
Here we are....4 years later and I am finally seeing my work pay off.  I have beautiful plants coming up (and have killed very few). I can name them all and tell you where best to plant them and how to keep them thriving. I can even grow a vegetable garden. My little tomato and pepper seedlings are flourishing, my family had enough frozen vegetables to last us an entire winter and I can make one bad-ass salsa!!
It is amazing that it took me 30 years to realize that I did retain all that info my mom pumped into my brain. And as much as we hate to admit that we are like our parents.....I am so much like my mom. Thanks for the green thumb mom...hope Alayna gets it too :)  Happy Gardening friends!! K