Tag Archives: Christmas

Monday 25. December 2017


We’ve made it through another Christmas season.  We were all off this year, no one even the least bit jolly.  With The Girl not being able to come home, kind of tough.  Didn’t have all the birds home and under one roof.  Too much change, mom isn’t good with change.

Busy weekend, all of my own making.  Too much dinking around, putting things off since the mood wasn’t there.  Of course Old Boy was able to go to a roping on Saturday.  Can’t miss one of those ya know.

We were able to get together with all the family on all sides save Old Boys sister’s family, the nephew has the nasty flu Bubba had earlier in the week, so hopefully next weekend we can do a supper one evening.


Sisters four kids and the one with the hat on the end is my Bubba

Church two times on Christmas Eve, which is always the highlight for mom.  In the morning was a baptism and Old Boy is Godfather and the evening was church at our childhood Lutheran church with my brother, sister and five of the nine kids.

Now, onto a new year, hopefully a better year for one and all.  Hopefully a better year for all mankind!


Christmas 2016

This Christmas season I’ve really struggled with remembering the “Reason For The Season”.  Had some moments of feeling sorry for myself when I’ve had to tell myself to get over myself and remember the meaning of the season and just why we are celebrating.  Have had a few moments of wanting to break down bawling and once wanting to yell and scream and throw things.  

‘Tis The Season!

Kaet and Dal made it back to Iowa late Friday night.  They just went straight to my folks to spend the night and came home yesterday morning.  I had more than enough to get done for the evening and for today, but I made time to sit down with the kids a few times and visit and laugh! 

By the “skin of our teeth” we made church last night.  Brother walked in minutes later, after the service had just begun.  As always, pastor had a wonderful sermon and the kiddos had a cute little program.  Everyone behaved until lighting candles for ‘Silent Night’ when our extra daughter kept turning around and blowing out our candles…she 27, so I had to tell her she was going to go to hell for jacking around in church.  

In all reality, we are all always stunned when we don’t spontaniously combust when we walk into church.  We were really bad this year and last night was the first time since last Christmas that any of us went to church.  Well, except for Brother, he does go from time to time.

Afterwards we all headed back to our place for Oma’s futtjens!  We did them for the first time last Christmas Eve when we found one of my cousins actually had her recipe.  We decided to make them a yearly tradition on Christmas Eve and after doing some research recently, found that they are a common Christmas Eve thing from the area of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany that my paternal great greats came from.  

It was so nice, we had a house full!  Brother followed us home after church and mom and dad came after church where they went.  We turned on Christmas Vacation, ate futtjens and just spent time together.  We gave Kaet her birthday gifts, she turns 22 tomorrow…doesn’t seem possible.  

Gave my folks an early Christmas gift, a stuffed life sized stuffed dog…they lost their 12 year old dog the day after Thanksgiving, dad wants to get another, mom does not…there’s a long story that goes with and being told not to get them live animals anymore.  I’m the youngest, I tend to be naughty from time to time!

Usually Brother Bear hits the bar crawl on Christmas Eve, this year he stayed around and watched a movie and thought about crashing.  His kids always spend Christmas Eve with their mother, he’s all about his kids, so I know it’s always tough for him.  I like being able to bring him into our annual doings of the night.

We started Christmas at my folks about 1 today.  Think it was at least 4 before everyone arrived.  Seems I forgot to tell The Sister that the time changed from 4 to 1…that one is totally on me, I could have sworn I told her, obviously forgot during our almost nightly phone visits over the past week.  The adopted brother’s kids showed up early and their parents showed up later, they had two family Christmas’ today, the kids have more cousins on our side, so when they were done with their Grammy they headed over early.  

Kaet and Dal left for Out West about 7 this morning so they could get to his family gathering.  They didn’t make it until about suppertime.  Their pickup broke down almost half-way between here and there and had to wait until Dal’s dad showed up with a car trailer to haul them home.  Had to remind myself when my brother-in-law pissed me off that things could be so much worse, to calm my ass down.  Just so thankful they were able to get back Out West safely. 

We really did have a good afternoon with the family.  This year mom had us all bring snack foods instead of having a big meal.  It was nice, but we sure missed the big feast.  It was definitely easier.  Enjoyed bonding with my brother’s girls and our “other” brother’s girl and wife.  We played Go Fish, snuggled…was just nice!  The family had never actually spent as many hours at a family gathering before, we’ve usually “had enough” by two hours and start leaving one by one.  The teens hung out in the basement and watched a rodeo, the boys actually behaved themselves as far as we witnessed!  

So excited to finally get to sleep in tomorrow before starting back in on this house.  Told the Old Boy last night that I wasn’t going to go any cleaning up until Monday…it was the holidays and we could do crazy mess until then.  

Hope everyone had a good one!


Saturday 17. December 2016

Starting to look a lot like Christmas!  We have snow!  Not much, but enough that very little grass is showing.  We were lucky and didn’t get nailed overnight last night like was forcast.  

We do have massive cold here.  Supposed to hit 20 below overnight, not windshield factor.  The record is 19 below for tomorrow.  We are in the running to beat it.  Thankfully we’re supposed to get into the lower 20’s on Monday and the weatherman is talking 30’s most of the week, so there is hope!  We’ve had way too damned cold for a few days now. 

Kirk and Leo spent most of the afternoon with the horses in the shed, getting them set up as warm as possible.  We have five horses and four inside stalls, so they built a make shift one in the shed, went to town to get rubber mats being the only areas in the shed without cement are in the four stalls.  We hit maybe four degrees today, so Chili needed to be able to get inside as well.

The emotional part of the holidays has kicked in.  Last night I was doing some baking, Kirk came into the kitchen and asked just why I was baking so much.  The tears started in and that led me to sitting on my bathroom floor, bawling. Didn’t help that I was listening to Christmas music and missing the childhood Christmas’ with my cousins and aunts and uncles and my grandparents. 

I’m not adjusting to this change very well.  When Kaet was in junior high and in high school we always had kids in and out of the house.  Our house was one of the landing zones for Kaet and her friends and I loved it.  They wanted my cookies and treats, they wanted to sit and visit with me.  There were a few of the girls, Kaet included that would ask me to curl and do their hair for the Christmas programs.  I’m missing those days.

These days it’s quiet.  Bubba does his thing, Kirk does his thing.  They don’t get into the Christmas thing so much.  I can get Leo to help a little with the baking, a little.  

Doing much better today.  Was able to get quite a bit of my baking done.  Don’t know who I’ll be taking treats to.  Way back in the day (actually only a handful of years ago) we had some older folks I’d take treats to and would buy extra FFA fruit to take fruit baskets to this time of year.  Everyone is gone.  Ms. Margaret, Uncle Jamie, Gramma Max, Old Ma, they’ve all passed away.  Kirk’s folks, they’ve moved to Florida.  

I get it, times change…looks like I need to figure out where I belong in all this change.  Figure out the start to the new chapter.  Sucks!  I’ve never been good with change, I would love it if things stayed the same forever.  

Deep down, I know change is good and all will be good in the end, it’s just like poking around in the dark trying to find the light switch, once the switch is found all will be good!


Tuesday 13. December 2016

Where has the month gone?  Wasn’t it just the 1st a couple days ago?  Pry about time I get my head out of my ass and start getting organized.  I look at my calendar and see that we are running almost every day this week, two days in and I’ve been to the city twice and have appointments the next two days there as well.  Don’t even have to guess, it’s obvious absolutely nothing is going to get done around here except for the bare minimum.  Really going to have to start looking at my book before making plans and double booking.  Kirk and I have been running in different directions for days and doesn’t look to change before Sunday at the earliest.  


So proud of our girlie!  She is a college graduate!  Has a degree in Ag Business and is in her second week of her first full time job with benefits!  After her first week she realized that she was no longer going to be able to work two jobs, which she has been doing since May.  She also realized that she isn’t going to need to be working two jobs to survive!  Such a strong girl!  So independent and such a hard worker!  Proud Mama!  

Good afternoon running with my boy!  Picked him up after school to run to the city for guitar lesson.  He was actually in a really good mood and didn’t get all grumpy with me when I ran through the usual daily after school list…what did you do in science, in math, in Ms. H’s class, ect.

While he was at guitar I drove up the street to Hobby Lobby.  Ran into a cousin I don’t see often and visited awhile.  Spent a little money.  Have been doing a little too much, spending a little money, lately.  Will be glad when the holiday spending is over!  

While on the drive home from the city Bubba even put his hand on top of mine while I was driving, he hasn’t done that in ages.  He humored me listening to Christmas music.  I’ve downloaded the White Christmas album from the movie of the same name with Bing Crosby and my favorite John Berry traditional church type Christmas music and some Pentatonix Christmas music.  He must be getting into the spirit of the season, or it could be the girl he’s been chatting with on the phone and video chatting (whatever it’s called) with the past few days?!

My most FAVORITE Christmas song/hymn of all time and this version.  I started singing this in my horrible singing voice to Leo the night he was born, it was the year round lullaby for him for many years.  Even in early elementary school years when he couldn’t sleep he’d ask for me to sing O Come for him and to not hum it!  Such a squirrel!  

Best Wishes to all!


Cousin  Christmas 

First family gathering of the season done and in the books.  Wish I had some pictures, but the third generation was a bit of a pain in the ass…you know, the generation that are constantly taking pictures of themselves with their tongues sticking out!  They didn’t want their pictures taken and were acting in a way that would have gotten our asses paddled with the belt when we were kids at Old Ma and Grampa Petersen’s.  I don’t recall my brother, my sister or myself getting in trouble or being paddled at Petersen Christmas, but I recall a few of my cousins being taken to the bedroom and getting their butts reddened by acting up.  Thankful tonight that our child behaved, at least in our presence. 

Was really looking forward to this gathing of cousins, it’s been years.  Old Ma’s last Christmas she said she wasn’t doing it.  2007 was the last Christmas the family gathered and the last family gathering that hasn’t been a funeral.  It was decided to be a Cousin Christmas, our parents could be invited if we chose, we figured they did Christmas for us for so many years that it was our turn to do all the work.  The sister was the only sibling to show, two of the brothers said they had no want to come, that they keep in touch with the family they want to and the one brother wasn’t welcome by his children.  

Only six cousins showed, seven didn’t.  Six live too far away to have been able to come on such short notice.  

It was actually a really great time.  We talked about Christmas’ when we were little, going caroling and freezing our toes. One of the cousins who was able to make it is a couple months older than me, there are three of us girls who are five months or so apart in age.  We visited about how we often had our yearly picture taken together, the year we were given matching sweatshirts and how we always had to sit at the kitchen table with our mothers…Old Ma assigned seats.  

I got my camera out to gather some memories and one of the next generation bellowed, “don’t take my picture”.  His mother only said, he really doesn’t like his picture taken.  Nothing was said to him.  I said okay and tried to get some shots of the adults at the kitchen table but that was next to impossible without half of each picture featuring the back of people’s heads.

I tried getting a shot of our foursome, we have four 14 year olds within nine months of one another.  The cousins daughter said, absolutely not.  I tried to get Leo and my two nieces, Leo and LuLu were agreeable…Sister Mary had a temper tantrum about my calling her Sister Mary and got down right nasty with me.  I’ve called her this for as long as I can remember.  She goes to Catholic school and with everything about her, she’s always made me think of Sister Mary Frances, a nun.  I wound up leaving the room, telling her she was acting like a real bitch and slamming the basement door.  Yes, I was taking the high road and acting like an adult we all see on the political shows on tv.  She made me so angry, her mouth just wouldn’t stop, I tried having a rational conversation with her but her mouth was so smart assed and all knowing and this is going to be my way or the highway.  I felt my blood pressure rise, you know the feeling of your eyeballs feeling like they are going to pop right out of their sockets.  

I’ve told her time and again how when I was a little girl the uncles on both sides of my family calling me Minnie or Minnie Mouse.  I absolutely hated it.  The more I told them not to call me that, that I didn’t like it, the more they seemed to call me that.  I never even noticed when they stopped.  Maybe 10 years or so ago, on rare occassions, my uncles started on occassion calling me Minnie and I have to say, I absolutely LOVE IT!  I’ve tried explaining that to Addison, and that I don’t know why, but the nickname just hit and seemed to fit…she just needs to ignore it, it’s not going to change.  If she quit throwing a fit each time I say it, maybe at some point it would go away and be forgotten just like Minnie was.  

The past number of years since the child has found her calling of being an amazing basketball and softball player, she can do no wrong.  Ask her mother, my sister, she will tell anyone within listening range that Addison rocks, she is the best athelete ever and can do no wrong.  She’s been allowed to act out and say what’s what and she gets away with it.  She thinks she can pull that with me and that’s just not going to happen.  I don’t play that game.  She had not been taught to resepecct her elders.  

Anyway, I’ve gotten off topic.

My Aunt Judy brought me some great family pictures of ancestors.  She also brought me an aebleskiver pan she’d found in her kitchen and didn’t use.  A beautiful cast iron version that I absolutely can’t wait to give a try at.  

However, I’m thinking if we do this again, we need to stick to the older generations!


Thursday 8. December 2016

Had us a beautiful day in the neighborhood this afternoon, even with only getting into the lower 20’s.  Definitely a day we were glad there’s no snow on the ground.  We are still trying to acclimate to the fridig temperatures that hit early last week.  We’d been having absolutely gorgeous weather for so long, such a mild November, so it’s felt like a slap in the face when the temperatures just dropped from one day to the next.  

Was finally able to get into the massage therapist today!  Buggered up my back almost two weeks ago and although it was getting better after getting to the chiropractor last week, was still needing something done.  Wearing shoes with a good arch support helps, but I don’t like wearing shoes, so it’s one of those things where I bring it on myself. 

Starting to slowly get into the Christmas mode.  Behind on shopping and baking, however I did dig into the dungeon tonight.  Actually sorting through the boxes and getting rid of things that should have been ditched a long time ago. Don’t have a lot of room, and don’t like to have everything crammed together just to have everything out, so also going through and leaving some things packed up for use another year.  

In years past when we were renting and traveling and moving we usually had large homes and gathered a large assortment of Christmas things along with different styles of Christmas decorations.  When we bought our acreage I had to make due with a home that was really just large enough for us and not much more.  Rather limited on space.  You make due with what you have, yes?  Kirk just reminds me that someday it’s going to be just the two of us and we’ll have more than plenty of room.  He prefers smaller…one of the many ways we are total opposites.

The big issue now is Christmas with Kaet and Dallas.  With them being about a seven hour drive out in western Nebraska, and with Kaet having a new bank job and wanting to have time with both sides of the family, they are feeling up in the air, guessing not wanting to piss off either side.  I completely understand, we were in their shoes once.

About six, seven months before we married Kirk got hired with a packing plant in the cattle department and was moved out to Lexington, Nebraska…a good five hour drive away from home.  Two weeks after I graduated from college we married and I moved out to Lex.  Our first Christmas there I was working retail and couldn’t get off to go home, my folks came out.  The second year I was two weeks past due with Kaet and we couldn’t leave, Kirk’s family came out.  All the other years we lived there and up in northern South Dakota, we were able to come home because I was able to be a stay at home mom and in the cattle industry, Kirk was able to work anywhere he had his phone and the week of Christmas is usually very slow.

When Kaet was home a couple weeks ago my mom told her that Kirk, Leo and I should just go out because they went out when we were in Lex.  Kaet has been insistant that we come out and do Christmas with Dallas’ family.  First, they are not married.  The only reason she was able to get away with living with him and me not having a total and complete fit was that she wanted to stay out there over the summer because they had gotten serious but wasn’t able to earn enough to get her own place and at 21 we weren’t going to give her that money.  I’ve met the mom, sweetheart, have both his folks on FB so have gotten to know dad enough to know he is a nice guy and we would all pry get along, but they aren’t married, they aren’t engaged, they are playing house and like Ialready said, the only reason I don’t throw a hissy fir is because I know she can’t afford to not be living with someone, so I choose to go by the saying… out of sign, out of mind.

Second is the big one…and was able to get through to Kaet today on this…yes, mom and dad were able to take a weekend and drive out to spend a night or two with us, but they had my brother living a mile down the road and still working with farm with dad and they could tell Brother to stay around for the weekend he was on duty with the horse and cattle chores.  We don’t have that.  We have five horses and three dogs, the dogs can do to our friends daycare in South Dakota, but I can’t say as she’s open for Christmas, not that I can’t call and find out.  The major issue is the horses and the weather.  To find someone who we can trust to do the morning and evening chores that we know 100% is going to be there and with it being so cold, even with the heated waters, something could happen and there would be a frozen mess. It’s hard for us to all leave and go at the same time…when one of us goes somewhere it’s just that, one and the other stays home to take care of the livestock.  He takes roping trips with his buddies and Gramma, Leo and I go on our mini vacations from time to time.  Warm weather is so much easier when the horses are on grass and we need someone to come once a day and our neighbors can keep an eye out for if something gets out, for the rare occassion we all go away for a day or two.

She understands and she does have four days off.  That makes a big difference too.  It’s not like she doesn’t have any time off.  She can talk to Dallas’ mom and we can work out something.  When we lived out in Lex we often headed home on Saturday morning and headed back to Lex on Sunday afternoon.  It was a lot of time on the road, but our family was important.  If I was homesick we’d sometimes do that twice a month, once I was able to leave retail and stay home with Kaet.  

Ugh…the fine details of the season!  

And…I should pry say goodnight, I’ve rattled on more than long enough!


Sunday 27. November 2016

The girl made it bad to NebraskaLand safe and sound this afternoon!  Thanksgiving is officially in the books!  Now we have a new days before I dare to even think about Christmas.  I’m one of those people who refuse to even think about Christmas before December 1st.  In all reality, if I could wait until the week before Christmas, that would be ideal.  Way back when we were a young family I wouldn’t put the tree up until the 23rd and would take everything down the 26th.  It wasn’t because I was a Grinch, I love Christmas…but Kirk is and Kaet was born on the 26th, when she was little I tried to separate Christmas from her birthday and that was how I did it…Christmas was all taken down and put away before we celebrated her birthday in the evening.

Kirk and Kaet are actually both Christmas Grinches.  Personally, I think she decided to be that was because her dad was and it’s more of a dog and pony show with them than anything.  Kirk has gotten better over the years, think he’s gotten used to the fact that I so enjoy the spirit of the season.  I so love to do things for others this time of year.  I try to not go too crazy with the gift buying, try to keep it simple.  This year I’m crocheting scarves and infinity scarves for those near and dear.  

We always do Angel Tree gifts for four local needy kids.  Think that’s our most favorite thing each year, Kirk has even gotten to enjoy that part.  We dump our change into jars and then buckets throughout the year, that is the money we use for the needy kids.  The last two years we were able to get everything on the kids lists.  Such a great feeling!

Anyway…so for the next few days I’m going to work on getting the house in order…get back to the laundry and deep cleaning that I started last week.  Hoping to make leaps and bounds on working on the pigsty we call the basement.  I’ve gotten really bad about just taking things to the basement and setting them down and do the whole “out of sight out of mind thing”.  It’s now gotten to the point where something has to be done…there’s no getting back to the area where the Christmas things are kept.  I’ll admit that I’m a hoarder.  Things have just gotten out of hand and I can’t continue to ignore the elephant in the room!  Especially when Kirk went to the basement and saw the mess this morning and threw a fit, threatening to get a dump box and just start chucking…things got a little on the ugly side around here today.  I like to keep good memories, he doesn’t care about those things.  We are day and night in that department. 

Hope everyone had a grand weekend and best wishes for a peaceful and fullfilling week for one and all!