Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Daily Jamie

September 24th
September 25th

September 26th

September 27th
September 28th
September 29th

A Thursday In England

I read a lot of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle when I was twelve and I was quite sure I was in love with Sherlock Holmes. He was the second love of my life, after Kermit the Frog, so being on Baker Street was a bit of an experience for me. 
First on the agenda after arriving in England and spending the night in Annemor's adorable, old brick house was a shopping trip in the big city. The Swede has been to London enough times to be a master of the underground, but our stop was closed and we ended up far from Oxford Street, our shopping destination. When we finally got there our first shop was Mothercare where we bought a cheap stroller for Jambo since our shoulders and arms were falling off from carrying him. After that, everything got much more fun.
I browsed Superdrug, a drugstore makeup paradise, and Zac, another of my great loves, was there. Please forgive this terrible picture of me, but it is one of his best and you needed to see it. 
We and the Segerstens shopped the heck out of London, stopping only for a pub lunch that was just precisely as disgusting as it looks. English food is not my cup of tea, as they say. The shopping is, however, and I'm pleased to say that I left with a few cosmetic items that would have cost much, much more in Sweden so it was a big success in my book. And with that to-do scratched off, we were able to relax and enjoy the rest of the trip out in the country. More to come tomorrow! 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


Off to London today for cousin Annemor's wedding! See you officially next week, but check back for possible Instagrams!

Daily Jamie

September 23rd

Monday, September 22, 2014

Daily Jamie

"Jamie, give me your best smile!"

An Old Favorite

Twin Bing is the weirdest chocolate bar I've ever encountered, which probably explains why you can only find it in a couple of places, one of which is the drug store in my hometown in Montana. It is also, frustratingly, the tastiest chocolate bar I've ever encountered. It's cherry-flavored nougat covered in chocolate and chopped peanuts and it is, somehow, divine. When we were in Ennis I bought seven and yesterday I ate the last one till who knows when. If you ever run across one, look past its boring, vintage wrapper, buy it, and try it. In fact, buy two and send one to me.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Daily Jamie

September 19th
September 20th
September 21st

The Winner Takes It All

First, my apologies for being a sorry excuse for a blogger this week. I guess I either got used to not writing while we were in Montana or Monday's catch-up post took all the energy I had for the week. Either way, I'm sorry and hope to do better in the future (though not this week, as we're going to London for another wedding in a couple of days). Aaaaaaanyway, here are The Swede and I, yesterday, on our way to my boss Per's fiftieth birthday party. He was a member of the eighties hair band Universe (here he is, second from the left with significantly more hair than he has now) and rock and roll is still his passion so naturally the party was held at a rock bar. About ten of our colleagues were there, along with about forty of Per's nearest and dearest. At the beginning of the party, Per passed out mingle bingo, a game meant to get everyone out of their seats and meeting the other guests. Please try to guess who won. IT WAS ME. Obviously. Those reclusive Swedes are no match for this mingle master. This post may seem like it's about a fun party, but it's actually just an excuse to tell you that I WON!!!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Daily Jamie

September 4th
September 5th
September 6th
September 7th
September 8th
September 9th

September 10th
September 11th
September 12th/13th (we lost 8 hours on the trip back so...)
September 14th
September 15th

God's Country

I don't even want to talk about the traveling to and from Montana (it could have been worse, but twenty-eight hours door-to-door is rough) so I'll skip right to the fun part. We arrived in Ennis, the town where I went to junior high and high school, late Thursday night and checked into the cutest cabin right next door to Mom and Ray at Lure Me Inn. Obviously we didn't waste any time getting into vacation mode, as evidenced by the chips in bed.
My sister and her fiancé stopped by first thing in the morning to welcome us to their wedding weekend and we took a little drive around the area, stopping to throw some rocks in the Madison River and enjoy the sunshine before meeting my dad and his wife for breakfast. It was the first time Jamie was meeting his Aunt Lukie, new Uncle Don, Opa and Grandma Rainy, which must have been overwhelming but he adjusted well and warmed up to everyone quickly.
During the time leading up to the wedding, we just hung out around town with the folks, checked out monster trucks (where do kids get this stuff?) and shops that I grew up walking by but never going into, throwing more rocks in the river, taking drives, eating good food and horsing around at the hotel. Mom and I helped a bit with the wedding set up on Saturday while our dudes napped and then we got to spend the afternoon with my niece Hayden. She's a doll and Jamie just loved her. 
On Saturday evening it was wedding time and my sister looked amazing. Not only that, she seemed happier than I'd ever seen her and was somehow extraordinarily calm considering she was throwing a wedding and hosting a ton of out-of-town guests. She and Don had a really sweet, simple ceremony, the high points of which were Lukia walking down the aisle to this tune and Hayden chucking her flower girl basket when she reached to altar. It was a warm day and the wedding was outside, they had a potluck with some of the best food I've ever tasted and pitchers of mojitos (!!!), there were lots of little kids for Jamie to play with, and a herd of deer crashed the party. There was a karaoke after party at a bar downtown that was filled with friends wishing them well and singing the night away. I don't think they could have planned it any better.
The next morning we took a drive out to Quake Lake with Mom and Ray then said good-bye to them as they headed out on their roadtrip back to Ohio. 
After that, we went straight over the hill to Virginia City and took an historical tour of the town on a vintage firetruck. Jamie was pretty into it, as you might imagine.
My dad had planned a couple of organ concerts to benefit Montana Dental Outreach during his visit to Montana and thankfully we were able to attend one on Sunday afternoon. He performed a dozen or so pieces of music - from renaissance to ragtime - on an organ that he built himself that played digitally-sampled instruments from all over the world. He included pieces he selected for each of his kids and their spouses and it was really special. Jamie was an angel during the whole concert so The Swede and I were really able to enjoy it.
On Monday morning we were scheduled to leave Ennis, but first we stopped by my old friend and employer, Victoria's place for brunch. We had a nice time catching up and she spoiled us with a delicious spread.
My dad had two extra tickets to Lewis and Clark Caverns and he and Rainy offered to watch Jamie while The Swede and I went inside of a mountain. I had been before when I was a kid, but had forgotten just how cool it is in there. Afterwards we went our separate ways, both toward Helena, but with different plans. We were so tired after the busy weekend that we just had dinner, took a quick drive by my old neighborhood (our old house wasn't even there anymore!) and went to bed early wondering why we had driven all that way. 
So the next morning we drove three hours to our next destination, Big Sky, which is just on the other side of the mountains from Ennis, but I'd never been before. It's a ski resort town and felt practically abandoned in this time between the summer outdoorsmen and the skiers. But hey, that meant cheap lodging for us!
The first day in Big Sky we just hung around the resort, checked out the shops, had an awesome Italian dinner, and played games and swam at the lodge. 
Then, on Wednesday, we drove to Yellowstone. We had gone the last time we were in Montana and my sister had shown us all the best spots and we were happy to check them out again. Unfortunately there weren't many animals out and we only saw five buffalo, compared to the dozens that approached our car last time.
Jamie didn't appreciate the thermal features as much as we did, but was quite taken with the buffalo poop and the idea of bear spray. He was a good boy, though, and got a monster truck and pizza for dinner when we got back to Big Sky.
On our last day it snowed. I'd have been shocked but we're talking about Montana here, and it was just so, so pretty.
We spent our last day in Bozeman at the Museum of the Rockies, which was a total hit, and then just drove around checking out some of the places I remember from when I was a kid. Also, The Swede got to eat Buffalo Wild Wings' queso dip and I got to do a round in Target. Vacation accomplished.
Now please say a prayer that Jamie isn't awake again tonight between 12:30 and 5:30 am and it will have all have been worth it. 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Back Home, Jet Lagged

Yeah, so, I guess I didn't get around to blogging at all while we were in Montana. Whoops. A combo of sketchy wifi, exhaustion, and just plain having too much fun made it impossible. And now the only remaining excuse is exhaustion. I will be back tomorrow with a full update, promise!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Way Out West

We're off to my hometown in Montana tomorrow and I don't know how much blogging I'll get around to while we're there. It shouldn't be a problem since most of my readers will also be there, but for the rest of you (ahem, Grandma), I extend my sincere apologies in advance for the possible lack updates.

Daily Jamie


Last time we had Jamie's buddy Axel and his mom over for dinner I made enchiladas. They were good, I swear, but the little boys refused to eat them and insisted I make them macaroni and meatballs instead. Kids. Yesterday I decided to keep it simple and make pancakes, though I took a risk and made them American style. The boys were both ready to reject them until I explained that they were Mickey Mouse pancakes and that they could make the faces themselves with jam. That got 'em. I have a couple of tricks up my mamma sleeve, alright.