hump day nuggets: shift

hump day nuggets: little bits of the season in photos and words about the last week

We went to an outdoor dinner party last night and the sun cast the most beautiful gold light across the faces of friends. Kids ran around in green grass, taking turns picking each other up. Grown ups lounged and sipped in lightweight cardigans and bare toes. Then the sun nodded off behind the mountain and the air temperature shifted into an entire other season that sent people scrambling for fleece, hats and indoors.


Once home we readied for bed at the hour that felt so early just a few months ago when the sun filled our home until 9:30pm. Andy and I exchanged our sleepy conversation until my eyes popped open and I said shit. Andy inquired and I said I felt in my guts that it would frost tonight. He groaned, knowing the next chapter all too well. I googled the weather and, sure enough, expected low: 32.

We rolled out of bed, throwing down coats over pjs and shuffled into the black black night in search of tarps. We silently communicated, remembering the process of uncorking supportive bamboo stakes and literally tucking the tomatoes in under their plastic blankets.

It didn't freeze. Soon, though, that's certain. I look up and the leaves wink gold against the bluest sky. Beets and corn replace tomatoes and cucumbers. It's certain.



:: Canning hasn't had the center stage she deserves. We just haven't had full days to devote to the process. However! Where there's a will there's a way. This year I have been preserving in little bits here and there. Like, I spent three days canning beets: cooking one day, peeling the next and canning the third. While I do love to can start to finish, I am happy to have this option that better fits our "schedule."


:: She's almost two.


:: I left my camera, my dreamboat on a chair in a local coffee shop/restaurant where I like to write. And I didn't realize it until many hours later when I called all stomach-in-throat to inquire. Yes, they said, it was there and waiting. We took the good fortune and opportunity to define our afternoon of gelato and park with camera.


:: Our kids sit by the radio to listen to music and programs. I love this.


::  I worked at the museum for seven years, advocating and raising money for this amazing resource in our community. And every single time I go there with my daughters, I am gobsmacked by the awesomeness of now enjoying this space as a parent, member, donor. I love it.


:: Ruby reads to Alice in the afternoons.


:: I hope my kids have wonderful memories of being a part of my business.


:: We are definitely seasonal library-goers. A rainy cool day planted Margot, Ruby and I there for a good bit and I remembered this slow-paced, good ol' fashioned entertainment with fondness and excitement. This fall, they can both walk and talk and I am not pregnant. That's a first.


:: These days I feel like both of my kids are so full of intense feeling. Need, love, want, pain...everything is felt so severely. I have been thinking about that, about how adults buffer and censor. Ruby and Margot have an amazing capacity to work through issues by immediately and honestly feeling and saying. Like, last night, Ruby held the tiny toy snake and screamed MINE and Margot, who loves that snake, screamed no, MINE with tears and they grabbed, pulled and pushed. I took a deep breath and for the eleventh time that hour I said, what do you two think we should do here? And, after a few moments of thought, Ruby handed Margot the snake and Margot said, Thank you Ruby. You can have it at the store. Do you want to hold my special green baby until then? Ruby nodded yes. No grudges, no punishment. Just moving on. The things I learn from my kids, I swear.

And, in the spirit of parenting tools, I am just loving this book right now.

:: Tomatillo salsa.


:: I so remember her extreme dependence, the days when I thought I'd crumble from the giving I had to do to make her happy. And now. My little confident, independent soul.


:: "Ruby, see over there? Those aren't quite ripe yet but if we get a few more days of sun, it just might happen. And, when we get home we should have a carrot. Does that sound like a good idea?"


:: Last nugget is a big one.

We might be, probably are moving. Staying in Missoula, but moving. This photo below could be our new back yard. I said it. For some reason I've held off from confessing this here but there you have it. This shift is a big part of our lives right now and deserves its own, solitary Nugget. Our home, our first home, the one we have fixed, redesigned and loved for eight years, the one that saw our family grow, that witnessed Ruby slip from my body...is for sale. Now that that gate is open, well, it's open. More soon.


My dear friend wrote me the most wonderful, encouraging note when I was feeling all how can we DO this?! She said
"... I imagine it'll be like Alice, then Margot, and Ruby ... you will love the next house/chapter as much (and more, and different) than you loved the first one. It too will become your home."

happy hump day out there

*Nugget it up and share. If you'd like, link to your nuggets in the comments.*

:: :: ::

all photos taken with a Canon Digital SLR from Vanns.com


Unknown said...

i want salsa.


Unknown said...

I love the puddle pic.

And your new yard is beautiful and much closer to mine. I like this.

And you.


dig this chick said...

unknown e:

once we sell our home and move up there you can have my salsa lot and other desirables.



becky said...

How wonderfully exciting!!!!!!!!!! I am wishing you all the best lady. Xxxoooo b

Jeanne said...

All I can see in your potential new place is so much space to farm. Good luck!

Jennifer said...

Love this post! And contgratulations on starting the process to expand your living space. Great memories of your first will define that time period/moment. The next house/phase will do the same.

You all just need more room for more love to ooze out! :o)

FYI! We love tomatillos and it is my best salsa. Cinantro, serrano/deseeded, fresh garlic! YummO!

Karen said...

I always enjoy reading your stories!!

Kelsie said...

The picture of your girls hugging just makes me smile. I wish I could drive to Missoula right now and give my sister a hug.

rebecca... said...

,,,congrats!,,,inquiring minds want to know the details of your new home when you're ready to tell,,,

6512 and growing said...

We had a frost-scare night like that recently. Dan gone hunting, me and Rose scrabbling around the skunky dark trying to cover *everything.* And then it was 40F in the morning. Whew, just a practice run.

Look at your new backyard! So many good times ahead.

peajmac said...

Your posts are often like ads for Missoula and Montana and I mean that in the best way possible. Montana Chamber of Commerce should be paying you.

Jaim said...

Wow, so many new memories to look forward to and so much room!

It's so funny that our daughters are the same age difference but mine are just a little a head of yours. I remember that feeling, that feeling of lightness of having both hips to yourself or not having to carry, console, or rock while attempting to do all your daily chores. It's amazing when they become their own person.

Good luck with all your new adventures.

j210209 said...

I always love reading your Nuggets. I look forward to reading them every Thursday morning :) Good luck with the house move! x

TRB Holt said...

What a great way to start my day~ Nuggets!


Annie said...

Good luck with the sale of your home! You've made your current home sound so warm and full of love. The next family to live there will be very blessed as well.

Tisha said...

"what do you two think we should do here? "

thats parenting genius sister! i am soo going to try that with my boys, which just so happen to be the same ages as your girls.

Enchanted Momma said...

A new yard will be your blank canvas. How truly awesome.

I’m not an artist, but gardening feeds my soul. Creating and nurturing and basking in the glory of completed work. Really, what an exciting time you have ahead of you!

Tina said...

Oh wow - congrats on the new digs! How awesome! We're on the brink of moving within the next year or two as well, also from our first home. It is so bittersweet, but I just know we'll be much happier with a larger home and more living (storage? eep!) space.

dig this chick said...

enchanted momma,

Gardening is SO much like art making. I have made less art in the last few years and don't feel like I am missing anything because I have my gardens. Such a similar process: start with a seed, an idea. Nurture it, watch it grow. Troubleshoot along the way. And, eventually, hopefully, enjoy a harvest.

So, yes! A new blank canvas yard indeed. Thanks for your comment. It struck a cord.

Tonya said...

It looks like you can have a huge garden in your new backyard! I understand it being hard to leave though. I have lived in my house since I was 12 years old. 3 of my girls share my old childhood bedroom and I am in my parent's old bedroom. It would be hard to ever leave, though we don't ever plan to. This house is perfect for my large family. And my parents live in my grandmother's house. This house has been in my Dad's family since before he was born. I have such wonderful memories from being there as a child and now my children have memories too.

Oh, and I can't believe it is getting down to the 30's in Montana. We have gone down into the high 50's a few times and we are ecstatic thinking it is so nice and cool outside LOL It is still in the high 80's during the day, boo!

I am going to be checking out that parenting book. Even though I have eight kids and two of them are officially adults, I never feel like I stop learning. Not to mention, they are all SO different!

Angie said...

A move?! How exciting! You will fill that new place with sweet memories in no time :)

Angie from Ohio

Karen said...

That is so fantastic!! and the quote at the end does sum it up!

Melissa said...

embrace the change, girlfriend. it will be perfect!
happy for you and your family!

Melissa said...

PS. I feel compelled to share that a guy is hanging stuff in my office and Leeor took a cool photo on a long-ago Missoula trip (like, pre-kids, pre-marriage long ago) and it's a photo of a Kern Bros automotive sign, lots of lines and angles and it's fun to have it up in here . . .random, I know, but if anyone would appreciate this it might just be you!

Kristin said...

Great post, as always. Change happens, but I will miss seeing photos of you guys in this house.

PS... my nuggets: http://www.kristinology.com/nuggets-jesse/

Minnesotagal said...

New adventures await! While the parting may be bittersweet it won't feel bitter long and the sweetness of your new home will grow boundlessly. I remember how sad I was moving out of my first tiny efficiency apartment. It was the first space that was all my own and I though I'd never love another like it. Ha!
Can't wait to hear more about your new "digs"...

Minnesotagal said...

Ps - Speaking of beets - beet growing question on Virgin Harvest for you.

Pps - You serisouly need to have a give-away for some of that tomatillo salsa! ;)

kyndale_pease said...

How exciting! And scary. Lots of work ahead and it's all worth it. xo

Amie said...

Nici, when I'm feeling somewhat lost as a mother, I always find your writing so inspirational. The love that you and your family has for the simple things always helps me find my way.

Saying goodbye to the house where your love grew will not be easy, but we always take moving as an adventure. We're on our 5th house in 10 years, having a new baby for each of the last 4 houses. They are all chapters in life that I wouldn't trade for anything. I can't wait to see where this adventure takes YOU. <3

My nuggets: http://thatswhyiloveyou-amie.blogspot.com

Sara P. said...

So exciting... New digs to make your mark and find new adventures! Remember the saying 'home is where your heart is', your generous heart and spirit will make any place a home. Best of luck.

:) And enjoy that yummy salsa!

Prairie Mama said...

Congrats on the move! Moving is always a challenge, but oh so exciting.

We moved with our girls from "their" first home when they were 3 and 1 and my older one is still so fondly attached to it. She reffers to it often. The detail she remembers, paint colors and where we made certain memories, where she got stuck in the mud at 2 in her pink cowboy boots. Oh memories....

Someone once told me roots and traditions are the most important to raising girls. It is so true. You are the perfect mama to prepare two little girls for such a big, exciting life change.

I'm excited to see picts and plans of your new memories, new roots and new garden.

Moving Blessings!

dig this chick said...

Amazing that a collection of people I don't 'know' can know me well enough to say the exactly right things. Thank you so much for your support and warm wishes! I feel it. x

Wesley said...

Congrats on your big move! Looks like you may have a much bigger garden in your near future! Exciting times ahead... :-)

Katie said...

Change is good. I am sure your new home will bring more love and light into your life than you can imagine. Can't wait to hear the full story!

Bikini By 30 said...

Isn't it so interesting that even great wonderful positive happy changes are still so bittersweet and fluttery?!

Best wishes for a smooth transition!!!

~ jessica said...

What a great adventure, though. Leaving the old home, the "original" home, is hard, yes. But growth is a part of life and your family will flourish with this change. Take pictures of your first house - the kind of gorgeous pictures you take - to frame or put in an album, so you can look later at the place you all nestled and nurtured in so lovingly. Moving away doesn't have to mean forgetting. I look forward to all the amazing things you'll do in this new home.

Melina said...

Hey Nici!

I'm relieved that you're staying in Missoula, since I knew the house was on the market and had no idea what corner of the earth you might be trotting off too! Perhaps a bit sad that you're not moving to Seattle but that was a pipe dream.

You posted a picture of your workshop! It's so beautiful and fun and colorful and REAL! I'm so impressed by the volume of work you put out.

One more thing- I grew up listening to the radio. Programs and news and music. It's such a gift, such a friend. I'm so fond of the radio that I created an entire fiction blog called Then the radio died, because at one point there was nothing worse than the thought of my radio dying.

Have a wonderful week.

FinnyKnits said...

Oh! Moving! You'll have to show me how to do this. I'm so connected to our first home and know that one day we'll move to be closer (or IN) the mountains and will have to leave it. I'm not sure how I'll do it.

Lead the way, wise Mama! I know you'll do it with grace and wit.

And I'm glad someone's reading to Alice. I bet she loves it.

KWQR said...

Holy nuggets! What I wouldn't give to have a backyard that looks like that. Or any yard for that matter... the one major downside to loft living. Best to you for selling the house & all that moving involves. I moved alot as a kid & loved how my parents made it all into a big adventure. Change is hard, but can also be such a catalyst for amazing things.

Happiness is... said...

I had a chance to throw down nuggets this morning with the rush of getting out of the house. You ripped the bandaid off of the shift. Wow. It's great. Change IS good. But I know there's so much history in the house. You birthed everything from your boulevard garden to your business to your daughter at that house. It will ALWAYS have a special place in your heart and in the fabric of your lives as a family.

Oh, but the blank canvas of a yard. First of all, what an exciting opportunity to plan over the long winter (oh, my favorite time to take the time to design!). Here's wishing you ALL SORTS of sunshine filled spots for your gardens and for your lives. Roots are going to grow and spread and thrive.

P.S. Are you going to take your porn-i-fied stove and hide it while the house is on the market? I would have a hard time leaving THAT behind!!


Katie (Mama May I) said...

When we left our first home I held my breath for what seemed like months as we settled into our new home. It took time, and now I can breathe just fine, very well actually.

Loved today's nuggets, love how much your sweet gals are growing, love the new backyard.


Ellie said...

Third attempt to post a comment....let's see if it works this time--
Congratulations on your planned move, Nici. I don't 'know' anyone else who is more able to embrace the present and make something out of nothing. I am sure this move will be a good new beginning.
You probably know that Positive Discipline has an edition 'for preschoolers,' which is sitting on my night-stand right now. I also just started "Simplicity Parenting," which looks quite promising (get rid of clutter, real and figurative, etc.)
Love the photo of Ruby's reflection in the water with a Dr. Seuss in hand.

dig this chick said...

Melina, the studio pic was for you!

Jennifer, no! Range not included in sale. :)

Ellie, I'll check out Simplicity Parenting. Thanks! Although, my bed-side table could sure use some sexier titles...right now it carries Positive Discipline, The Homesteading Handbook and Making It. How boring am I? How about some novel recommendations?!

Amy said...

I have often wondered that if the time comes to sell our first home, which we made into what it is (it was a duuuump when we bought it), if I will be able to.... you have given me hope! Love the nuggets and the new backyard!

Sarah Jean said...

We recently left our first home to move back to MT and I still get very nostalgic just thinking out how I learned to spread my wings and nurture a new family in that first little house. Good luck.

Ailene C said...

Amen to the Positive Discipline shout out! That book/series has completely changed our household. So glad to hear it's working for you guys too.

As always, your perspectives on life and motherhood are so refreshing. Thanks!

Honey said...

Oooh, look at that big stretch of land! How glorious a backyard that would be.

We're moving (in that process, anyway) as well now, so I understand the stress that comes with it, but still, moving forwards is good, there is much to look forward to.

Crystal Pence said...

My hubby and I have been seriously toying with the idea selling our house, moving further out of town and of getting some land, etc. for about 6 months now; so when you noted a few weeks ago about big changes I "just knew" you were talking about moving/buying a new house/land. I thought to myself, "that's it, she is going to do it. That little family is going to get an awesome spread and have a fantastic garden/farm and live the dream." Then I secretly thought, just maybe it means that my little family could do it too. Maybe. I can't wait to hear all about your fantastic adventures in this new edition.

glaciercountyhoney said...

I am glad you're not leaving Missoula - I left several years ago for the even bigger, but much-colder-and-windier skies of Glacier County, but I read your blog religiously and remember why I once wanted to raise my family there. Thank you for your gifts to the internets - I'm sure that your next adventure will be beautiful, and I wish you best.

Also, I ordered 4 of your Montana hoodies & tshirts, and delighted over their recent arrival. Quality, quirky - and the perfect gifts for friends who are hosting us in Virginia soon. I'll be reordering!

Shaylen Maxwell said...

All of Margot's ideas are good ideas! & do you pickle the beets, or just jar them as is. Either way, delish! And I really hope Sneaky grows up with the same fond memories! & a new home... I'm so thrilled for you! & sad too, I love your house! As your good friend said, it'll grow to be yours in no time. Can't wait for more updates.

And here's my nuggets: http://shaylenmaxwell.blogspot.com/2011/09/last-week-this-week.html

Ingrid said...

just want to let you know that I received the lunch kit and tomatoes in the mail this morning: all in fine condition. Getting tomatoes in the mail made me smile.
Thanks for that!
Congrats on the new house!!

Jenny V said...

The pictures that you post of your dynamic duo melt my heart. Congratulations on the move! I think that your friend summed up this new adventure beautifully. Great things ahead, no doubt!

Some more New England nuggets...

Happy weekend!
Jenny V

Natalie said...

So exciting! Love your nuggets and that doll backpack carrier. I wanna make one!

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