Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Report #1: Really Raggedy Ann

We open only a few gifts on Christmas Eve. My mom sent me a box with specific instructions to open it on Christmas Eve when we were all together. I nearly forgot! But found the box sitting under the tree before I went off to bed. You know, so Santa could come! I still love thinking that!

When I sat down to open the box Bethany, Christa and Danae all said "Oh, I know what it is!" So I opened the box to find my old Raggedy Ann Doll. Mom had saved it since I was a little girl, or maybe I was thirteen when I finally gave her up, I don't know, 'cause if you ask me I still LOVE Raggedy Ann. Well, Mom and her trusty friend Trudy had restuffed and redressed my Miss Raggedy. And she was beautiful...well, actually she's pretty ugly. But what a wonderful gift from my very distant past. Mom said I got her when I was three. That makes her about 35(!) years old. Or something like that.

Friday, December 18, 2009

What Have I Forgotten? (Danae Style)

1. Thirteen Stockings Hung (see last post)
2. Christmas Tree Up, very high on a table, out of reach of little fingers
3. HoneyBaked Ham arrived from Uncle Carlton
4. Two pack-and-plays on loan
5. Two car seats borrowed
6. One townhouse (complete with crib, toddler bed and more) on loan
7. One table leaf inserted
8. Two booster chairs borrowed
9. New batteries in the camera
10. Presents bought and wrapped
11. Stocked up on toilet paper and paper towels
12. Parcels wrapped and mailed
13. Christmas Dishes on stand-by
14. Snow for a White Christmas
15. Lots of coffee in the cupboard
16. Front-wheel Drive vehicle secured for trip over the pass
17. Diapers and wipes bought
18. "The Ellen" tickets bought for the 23rd
19. Itineraries Confirmed
20. Extra hats and gloves for southeners

What have I forgotten?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Lucky Number 13

Andrew walked in from work tonight, and saw the stockings I have hanging down our banister. He remarked "Look at all those stockings!" I replied "That's how many of us there will be for Christmas!" He didn't believe me. He had to count. Dad, Mom, Bethany, Christa, Jason, Bailey, Caden, Danae, Doug, Andrew, Emily, Grace, David. Thirteen! Seems that's my lucky number now days!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

"A" Team

Grace took her first high-school road trip this weekend, to Great Falls, MT, with the volleyball team. The "B" team that she had been playing on didn't travel much, so to be called up to the "A" team just in time to take an overnight trip was every freshman's dream come true. They left Friday morning at 8:30 (missing an entire day of school!) and got home about 9:00pm Saturday.

So what would go through your mind if your 14-almost-15 year old daughter told you her team was going for an overnight, complete with unchaperoned hotel rooms? What went through my mind drove me to my knees! But I was quite delighted when she returned with the following photos as THE highlights of the trip.

This "ghetto diner" was where the girls ate breakfast. It definitely left an impression on the girls. Grace did say, though, that it reminded her of being in the south because the waitresses kept calling everyone "hun" and "sweetie".

And what could be more harmless than girls in footie jammies! Okay maybe four girls in footie jammies. What are the odds!?

So, one road trip down, many more to go. I just hope the highlights continue to be bad restaurants and footie pajamas!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Three Down, Four to Go!

We're really trying to get all our kiddos here for Christmas. Today Danae called and said she and Doug had bought their tickets! Yay! Bethany has also bought her ticket! Yay! Now, we just need to get the Clark's on board! Well, they are definitely on board, just haven't bought their tickets yet. It is insanely expensive to fly in and out of Bozeman. Not sure why, other than we're close to Yellowstone, Big Sky, and the best Trout Fishing in America. (the fishing, not the band!)

So I guess it's a good thing I GOT A JOB! Yesterday I was offered the position of receptionist at a new bank branch in town. Answering phones, directing customers through the lobby, setting the tone for the lobby. Same song, second verse, but I am excited! Part time, M-F, 10-3, perfect!

We're off to Billings today to see Grace play volleyball. And to shop for new work clothes!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

House Blurb

I talked to our realtor yesterday. He said he had talked to their realtor who had talked to the bank. The bank said that there is an important form that is apparently in process. Sounds good. They referred to our offer as "the preferred offer". Oh, and the title company does not have our check, our realtor still has it.

So this is good news. We're still waiting on the great news!

Monday, October 19, 2009


I can't remember how long it's been since we've carved pumpkins at our house. But Saturday night we were all home, and had four beautiful pumpkins (a.k.a. 14 cents a pound pumpkins!) that were just begging to be carved.

You can only imagine how many seeds I roasted from four pumpkins!

David won the "Most Persistent" Award due to the delicacy of his design, and the fact that he continued to work on his pumpkin well after the others were finished.

The finished design

Grace's with braces! Or "grills" as she called them!

Andrew's pumpkin family

Emily's zombie!

All aglow on our back porch, to avoid early pumpkin smashing!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Four Weeks, but Who's Counting

Four weeks ago today, we put an offer on a house. Today we still have not heard that it's a go. Although this morning our realtor did call and say he was taking our earnest money check to the Title Company for deposit. Shouldn't we know why they are taking our money? Shouldn't we have a "yes" or "no" by now? Shouldn't we?

Monday, October 12, 2009


1. I took a tour of our new fire station, and found some free meeting space.
2. Heard from Christa that Caden has fractured two bones and has a cast on his arm.
3. Saw a physical therapist for my back but thankfully left with only exercises.
4. Learned my body was too clean to be a lab rat for Bioscience.
5. Earned $5.00 for watching my birthday buddy, Elise, who was born last July 28.

Monday, October 5, 2009


We interrupt this real estate report to bring you this tidbit...I got a call today from a lady whose house we looked at a couple months ago. The house was a nice big one, near the high school (not the one we put an offer on) but was priced way out of our range. Anyway, she wanted to know if we had found a house and I told her we were in process with the bank. She said they were going to have to lower their asking price. I told her our top dollar, and she said they probably couldn't come down that low. But if they did, she would call. Curious.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Two Out of Three

We have learned that the owner of the house we have put an offer on, has accepted our offer.
We also know that the real estate agent has taken the house off the market.
Two out of the three things that need to happen have happened. Yay! We are now waiting on Bank of America to approve the whole deal. Because this is a short sale, they have the final say.

If you happen to work at Bank of America, would you check your desk for the "Keena File"?! We are getting anxious to move!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fly Fishing

Jim had a chance to go fly fishing yesterday. Daniel (front) is a fly fishing guide so really knows the ropes. Steve (background) is a physical therapist by trade, but we are becoming to know him as a man of many talents. They both attend our church and offered to take Jim fishing on the Yellowstone River.

Jim had great success and caught six or seven fish. But brought home none. As he put it "These guys are sportsmen, they catch-and-release". So much for fish and chips for dinner!

I think fly fishing is something Jim could really learn to enjoy. He even came home with a battle wound...a blister on his thumb. That's my man!

Oh, and this is what it's doing today!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

It CAN Happen to you.

Just sitting here reading blogs, when an explosion sounded. From my 'fridge. I thought someone may have put some hot boiled eggs in the 'fridge to cool down, and the cooling must have caused the exploding. But, there were no exploded eggs in the 'fridge. Thankfully. Instead I found an opened can of refrigerated biscuits, and not on the shelf where I put them. The explosive had a May 24 expiration date on the end of the can. Do I really have things in my 'fridge that are that old? Kind of creepy. And so was the explosion. And so is my heart rate. I'm going to go lay down. Sure hope nothing else explodes!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Offer Made, Again

Friday we put an offer in on the Treasure house. It's a short sale, and from what I understand, there is usually nothing short about them. We will know if the bank decides to accept our offer, whenever they feel like telling us. So, we are still looking. No time to waste.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Househunting Update

We looked at a couple more houses yesterday. One was rickety and falling to pieces, so we're going to pass on that one. One was an awesome condo, but it IS a condo, so we're not sure we want to go that route. The third is a house identical to the one we're in, in the same neighborhood, which we love! The neighborhood, that is. The house needs some elbow grease, but the price is right.

There are two major differences in the one we are in now, and this other one. The other house has no wall dividing the living room and kitchen, so it has a very large, open feel. Not having the wall means not having the pantry that is on that wall. I would miss that.

The other big difference is the fourth bedroom in our current house is an open family room in the other house. So that would mean the girls would have to go back to sharing a room. Which Emily said is fine (Yay, Em!) but Grace is not sure about (go figure, since she is the mess maker!).

Other things we like about it:
It has beautiful, hard wood floors on the main level.
The back yard is a nice size.
We love being close to the pond, mall, Streamline, and the Ridge.
It has a hall linen closet that we don't presently have.
It has an extra kitchen window that we don't presently have.
We really like this tri-level design.
Did I mention that the price is right?

We'll need to decide in the next couple of days if we want to make an offer. And I'm leaving town for three days tomorrow! So, stay tuned!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thanks, but no thanks!

We have an upcoming women's retreat. I am in charge of the auction that raises money for our district project. So I have made an appeal to folks in the church to donate new or gently used items. I received a call from the church secretary that there was a pink basket at the church office with donations for the auction.

So yesterday I went to pick it up. This is what I found. The first thing I picked out of the basket was a racey novel with "Bozeman Public Library" stamped on the edges. Great, someone at church is contributing a STOLEN book! The image on the front was even more offensive...two lover's embracing passiontately! Oh, my! I thought "Well, maybe this is one of those Christan love stories." So I opened and started reading. It is not one of those "Christian love stories." Great, someone at church is reading trashy paperbacks!

The next thing I pulled out of the basket was this beautifully framed photo of THE POPE! Great, someone at church idolized the Pope!

Next, a coffee mug. I'm pretty sure this is somewhat offensive right? Unless the donor not only reads trashy paperbacks, but is also a Twilight fan!

The strangeness continued with this pink octopus aquarium ornament.

At this point, I started to wonder if this was a joke. And then I remembered my dear Prankster Friend! As I pilfired through the rest of the basket, I tried to chuckle at each obsurdity; an Elvis Christmas cassette, a half-burned candle, some floppy red-striped earrings, and a gaudy metal fairy princess!

Later yesterday I ran into said Prankster Friend, and she fessed up! I was relieved to know that her pink basket finds were the result of her and her daughter taking a trip to the Thrift Store. And I was relieved to know that we have no Pope loving-trashy novel reading-bad taste in earrings wearing woman! Whew!
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Monday, August 31, 2009

Offer Rejected

Well, she made us a counter offer, but it's not looking anywhere near our range. Bummer. Back to the drawing board.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Offer Made

We put an offer in on a house today. Five bedroom, living, family, dining, near the high school. It's always daunting to sit through the real estate agent's explanation of the stacks of papers to be signed. But a little exciting as well. We should have an answer by Monday evening.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Renewing My Mind

More prayer...less idle time.
More connection...less internet.
More discipline...less freedom.
More tasks completed...less negligence.
More encouraging words...less silence.
More scripture...less television.
More organization...less frustration.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

To Do

David's room, zucchini bread, Grace's closet, order photos, lending ministry, Christa's package, clean carpet, order Mary Kay, call Ann, three trips to Four Corners, dentist, Meet & Greet, volleyball parents meeting, retreat details, Staff and Elder's wives invites...ready, set, GO!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Andrew and His Pasta

The other day I walked into the kitchen and saw homemade pasta laying everywhere. Andrew was drying his latest delicacy. I said to him "You know you can buy that stuff in a box". I've never made homemade pasta, and I really don't understand people that do. But then, I am an not a pasta expert; to me it all tastes the same.

So come dinner time, Andrew had prepared his pasta, and was pouring it into a bowl. He lifted the bowl with oven mitts on, and the bowl slipped. Have you ever seen Corelle break? It shatters into a hundred pieces! And there it laid, the homemade pasta interwoven with shards of Corelle. All I could do was so "Oh, I'm so sorry!" All Andrew could do was leave the room! That was the end of that.

Until today, he decided to try a second time. He prepared the pasta, cut and laid out the pasta, and would you believe that our dog got up on the table and helped himself to about a third of it! Grrr! But the other was salvageable.

So Andrew not only prepared the pasta for dinner tonight, but he also made an amazing homemade marinara sauce. Who does that? I didn't have the nerve to tell him that shortly after Jim and I were married I went to all the trouble to make homemade lasagna sauce. After tasting it, Jim said "I think I like Ragu better". But Andrew's sauce was amazing deliciousness!

The pasta is gone, but there is just enough sauce left for ME for lunch tomorrow! Yum!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Mom's Taxi

7:15am Take Grace to Camp Agape
10:00am Pick Emily up from work
10:30am Take David to Dylan's
12:30pm Take letter to bank to notarize for Andrew
1:00pm Pick up David from Dylan's
2:00 pm Drop Andrew off at MSU
2:30pm Take David to Jacob's
3:00pm Wait for 45 minutes in MSU parking lot for Andrew
3:45pm Pick up Grace from Camp Agape
4:00pm Take Andrew to Rosauer's to mail package
5:00pm Park Taxi

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Bite of Bozeman

We've officially made it to our first repeat Bozeman event. That means we've been here over a year now. And I must tell you, our second Bite of Bozeman was by far, better than the first, for several reasons.

1. We actually knew what Bite of Bozeman is; to-go size portions of various offerings from dozens of Bozeman restaurants. They were all to-go sizes except for the super gross, two-foot-long hot dogs. Everytime time I walked by that grill, I had to turn my head. Please! Who needs that much processed meat on a bun?!

2. I don't remember what the weather was like last year, but I'm sure it was better tonight. 70 degrees is just about perfect for an August evening, wouldn't you say?

3. Last year we ran into one person we knew, Kenji. This year we ran into Kathy, John, Cyd, Aurene, Matt, Lisa, Andy, Shayna, Danielle, Nicole, Georgia, Anthony and his dad, Danelle, Eric, Anna, Abe, Nathan, Chris, Keaton, Grant, Tyler, Ryan, Iho, Derrick, Johanna, Briley, Danali, Corrie, Jonathan, and a couple other people we've met before and couldn't remember their names. (Sorry guys, but we just couldn't bare to ask your names again, since we just did last Thursday at Music on Main!)

4. The food was so much better this year. Or at least our sampling was better. I had a barbeque sundae for dinner. I'm not kidding! Barbecued brisket, baked beans, and cole slaw layered in a tall plastic cup. Simply stir, and love it! I will definitely be on the look out for this next year! Two hours later I was on the prowl for dessert, and found the perfect delight; a huckleberry bar a la mode! This was definitely a better food year!

This was definitely a better Bit of Bozeman year. Of course, the camera was nowhere to be found, so you'll just have to take my word for it!

Sunday, August 2, 2009


July 28 was my birthday, a significant one, and I photo-journaled the whole day!
Enjoy! I know I did!

I woke early to a well adorned kitchen, complete with streamers, balloons, and flowers!

I started out, taking Emily to work, and getting a wonderful vanilla latte!

I went to Camp Agape at 7:30am to register/check in campers. Jania (right) made me a birthday crown to wear, and wear it I did. Proudly!

I received a beautiful birthday bouquet from two of my favorite people: Doug and Danae!

Jim and I went to Peak Alignment, a class for spine strengthening.

Grace and I went bowling. I was pleased to break 100!

We then went to the Goodwill, can't remember what for. But as always, we found a few treasures.

We went to pick Emily up from work, and I was treated to this fabulous piece of blueberry pie, warm from the oven!

We went downtown for dinner.

Celebrated at home with a really hot cake!

I opened my gift from my children...a beautiful red Kitchen Aid.

I then called the girls to thank them for the delicious gift!
(Notice the beautiful new watch from Jim)

Then I went to bed, thoroughly relishing in a day well celebrated!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Hiking the "M"

As we are trying to do "Bozeman things" this summer, I'm happy to report that Emily, David, Duke and I hiked the "M" today. For non-Bozemaneers, the "M" is a large letter M, made of rocks, on a mountainside for all of Bozeman to see. It represents Montana State University, I suppose. We started out about 11:00 on this very warm day, and needed to have Emily to work at 2:00. No problem. There are two routes to the "M", the Steep Route and the Gradual Route. Well, since this was our first time up, we decided to take the Gradual Route. Or so we thought. We quickly tired and opted for the "short cut" which actually was no shortcut at all. See, at some point up the Gradual Route Short Cut, we got off the beaten path. Not a good idea, especially when we couldn't even see the "M". At one point Em and I were crawling on our hands and knees up the mountain. Dozens of times I wanted to quit and thought "This is really far enough for my first time". To which Emily would reply "Come on Mom, we can do it!" After approximately 75 minutes of climbing, we DID make it to the top. The "M" is a little disappointing, just a pile of white rocks, but the view of the Gallatin Valley is breathtaking. As was the climb up! Next time we are sticking to the Gradual Route up. I'm sure we'll get there quicker!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Fourth

We had a fabulous day today, "floating the Madison". The Rads invited us weeks ago and we've been looking forward to this ever since. We left town about 11:30, driving about an hour to reach our put in point. The clouds were threatening, and the weather was cool, but the Rads had rented the rafts, by cracky, and we were going! We boarded the two people rafts, towing a food raft. Now, Carla had said she was bringing finger foods. I interpreted that as being snack foods. You know, cheese and crackers, granola bars, apples, and baby carrots. My bad. I had forgotten that you can eat fried chicken, watermelon, sliced veggies, brownies, cookies, rice crispy bars, sunchips and pringles all with your hands! It was a wonderful floating feast.

Soon after finishing our finger foods, we floated upon a capsized canoe. Three "young people" were hanging onto the sides of the canoe, as were two very elderly people. One of the young gals called to us for help: "Could you help us? We have old people!" The young'ens had seen the canoe capsize and jumped in to the river to assist. Jim, Rick and Andrew also jumped into the water and headed to the capsized boat! Dylan steered us toward shore, where I jumped out and headed toward the place on shore where the capsized folks were heading. Those two "old people" hung on for dear life! I reached out for the lady who scooted herself up onto a rock. I asked if she was okay, and both her and her husband (I'm assuming!) were fine. They had lost their cooler, his life vest, her shoe, his hat, and maybe a hearing aid, but do you know that those two got BACK in their canoe, and headed down the river? I am sure these folks were near 80, and I thought to myself "Do your children know where you are?" Needless to say, I was concerned, but we never came upon them again, so I'm hoping they made it safely.

The sun finally came out about 30 minutes before the end of our float, so we only got pink, and not fire-red sunburned! Whew! As we pulled to dock and scurried about unloading the rafts, Andrew saw a snake in the water. He's not a great fan of swimming with snakes, so he boarded the raft again...quickly! The snake was "more afraid of him than he was of the snake" or so they say, and the snake headed to shore where the Rad boys found great delight in looking at it. Really, it's a snake! They are long, slimy, and God cursed them for a good reason. What's to look at? No wait, Dylan wasn't content with just looking at it, and picked it up. In his hands. For all of us to see. The closer he got to the snake-hater Keenas, the further we moved back. After sharing the holding with Ty, they let him go. To wherever snakes go after they are traumatized by humans.

Sounds like a great day, doesn't it? And it was! And of course, we forgot our camera. But it all really happened! Thanks, Rads, for a wonderful Fourth. Oh, and next year, Carla, I'm frying the chicken!

Monday, June 8, 2009

He Got It

Just to follow up, Andrew did get the job at Barnes and Noble. He starts training on Wednesday. This would be a perfect job, if only he liked to read!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Job Interviews

Andrew has had several job interviews since he has been home. Three of them have been at Barnes and Noble. Tomorrow he will have a fourth. Still waiting to see if all those haircuts were worth it. Really...four interviews for one job?! Well, I guess he did get four haircuts for said job. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

The Fifty Dollar Hair Style

Andrew arrived home last week, with hair long enough for a pony tail. Now, I have always loved Andrew's hair, even in a pony tail. He's got great hair! But he was preparing for job interviews and decided he should probably spiffy up a bit. (I'm not really sure he used the word "spiffy", but that's what he meant) So I took him to the mall, to The Salon. The gentleman that cut his hair respected his request to "just cut some off the back, and shape up the front". When he was finished, that is exactly what he got. A couple days later Andrew thought he should probably go a little shorter so he asked "Mom, where are your hair cutting tools?" I asked if he was planning on cutting his own hair, which he has done before, but we did just pay $$$ for his mall cut. I said "You know, you could probably go back to that guy and ask him to take off some more length." Andrew answered with a "Maybe I already did!" Yes, he had gone back later that same day he got it cut, and asked for the stylist to take more length off. I hadn't even noticed. So we found my hair scissors, and Andrew and Emily went to town on his hair. It wasn't bad, really, just a bit shaggy, but it wasn't bad. But with two job interviews impending, Andrew thought he really should have a good cut. So he went to a walk-in hair cuttery, and paid more $$$ to finally get the look he wanted. And I must say, it does look nice. After all that, it should!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Mother's Day Ala Keena

Mother's Day was a great Sunday. After church, I came home to an elaborately decorated back yard, complete with personalized graffiti on the back fence.

Staying true to Keena tradition, the table was set with a bucket of chicken from the Colonel!

After a finger-lickin'-good lunch, there were presents to open.
Emily did a fine job picking out this red crock-pot for me.
David, however, seems to think that I need to use it absolutely every day.
I think I need to find that Crock Pot Lady!

This was my reaction after opening "the gift" from everyone.
It was a Spa Package, complete with massage, facial, manicure and pedicure!

David made me a delicious chocolate cake, and Emily and Grace decorated
it befittingly with a giant Oreo "M".

My favorite part of the day was reading the notes Jim had gathered
from each of the kids, and even my son-in-laws joined in. I would post a picture of me all teary-eyed, and I do have one, it's just lop-sided! It meant so much that everyone took
time to really thank me for being their mom!
Or maybe they said I was a great mom.
I'm not sure which.
But it was nice!