hump day nuggets: thirteen summers

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

Thirteen years ago yesterday, I had a first date with a man. He taught me how to rock climb in East Rosebud on a 5.8 pitch. This means this never-before climber was shaking in her pants up on a rock while the hot guy she had a crush on was under her, his only view her ass. I made it up that rock right quick. And then we made out like 19 year-olds.

Andy and I have been together ever since.
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Us at 19. I just grabbed the first photo I could find because you know how it gets when you crack open albums from way back when…oy I could have stayed up all night gawking at my young self. Don’t we look young?! I even feel like we have baby chub on our faces.

We actually met when we were 12. Twenty years ago. And, believe it or not, we had crushes on each other at that time. I saw him every summer when my family would make the drive to Red Lodge. With my cousins, we fished, hiked, jumped off bridges into icy mountain creeks, camped in my uncle’s wall tent. We went to movies that had been out for months but were premiering at the Roman Theater. We ate ice cream at the Red Box Car and bought beads at the Rendezvous. And Andy was often there, as my cousin’s best friend.
I thought he was the cutest but my cousin assured me he wasn’t my type. Andy thought I was the cutest, but his best friend assured him I wasn’t his type. Finally, at the mature age of 19, we talked to each other instead of through Colin and, sure enough, we were each other’s types.
Of course I had no idea when I first saw the thick-haired, super cool snowboarder in Gramicci’s that I’d ditch a full-ride scholarship to follow him across the country, live together all through college, get cats and a dog. Buy a house, get married. That he’d be holding my hands and staring in my eyes as I pushed two daughters into our lives. Build a big beautiful life with him.
Oh, my love. Isn’t it something that we grew so well together? Wonder where we’ll be in another 20 years.
13 years of seasons, of growth, of blooms.
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nuggets.
:: Right off the bat, I am so happy to announce this month’s sponsor: b. handmade design. Becky Shreiner is a Helena, Montana artist who designs and makes the most beautiful clothes and accessories for kids and women. You all have seen Margot in her pinafore and headband. I LOVE her stuff.
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She makes purses, totes, handbags, kid clothing, adult skirts and hair accessories. We love our reversible pinafore…it’s so versatile as it can be worn over a warm long sleeved shirt with jeans or a tank and leggings. And, you, dear reader, have a chance to *WIN* one. Becky is giving away a butterfly pinafore (available in sizes 6 months-4T)!
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Leave a comment by Sunday, June 20 and I’ll announce the randomly selected winner on Monday. Let’s make it fun…if you are inclined, share where you were 13 years ago.
:: We lived summer this last week. There was the backyard naked karate kicks.
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sharing cheesy noodles with friends,
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taking turns on the swing (see Ruby way back there?),
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:: There was the front yard with digging and planting
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and digging and planting as I converted our weedy boulevard into space for food,

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and taking breaks from all that digging and planting to race the sun at melting a popsicle
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and draw.
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One of my favorite photos I have ever taken of Margot.

:: In between our front and back yards is our home that looks exactly like it exists between two gardens. In our home we tip toe around and make early morning muffins while papa sleeps in a bit.

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And we eat them in the back yard of course.

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:: Where we admire the cutest chickadee family that is living in our birdhouse with three wee babes (I found a dead fourth on the ground yesterday morning. Poor little bird. I buried her under her family).

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:: Summer also encourages getting out. Meeting friends at the park,

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or for walks around town,

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or a just-mama post-bedtime rendezvous at the park

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:: It’s summer and everything is photogenic.

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Every year, every 13 years, although there’s so much that can happen, so much unexpected (like marrying your childhood crush), there’s also a loose predictability…

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a rhythm that keeps us dancing and seeking joy.

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85 Responses to hump day nuggets: thirteen summers

  1. Catherine says:

    What a great post, Nici! I love the photo of Margot drawing on sidewalk and I loved that you showed us your front yard garden! It looks so lovely!

    Let’s see, 13 years ago I was just starting university in Montreal in translation. I was fighting severe depression and a bad heartache from a complicated love affair… I was still ajusting to living in a big city and found it a bit overwhelming, but at the same time was discovering the joys of it, from ethnic food markets, to arts and cafés…

    Love to you,

  2. TRB Holt says:

    This post made me cry….so beautiful, your love for Andy, your girls, your Montana, words, your life. I love you so!

    That photo of Bug drawing is my new fav!

    …about the next years with Andy? Your Grammie’s favorite quote says it all, “Stars come and go! … GROW old along with me! The best is yet to be” by Robert Browning

    ps….yesterday was my mom & dad’s anniversary too.

    xoxo

  3. For me, the best part about your beautiful life is how you so eloquently recognize and share it’s beauty. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Jenny G says:

    Lets see… 13 years ago I was sweet 16!!! But not so sweet. I was running around smoking cigs, drinking cheap beer, dying my hair red, and dating older guys. Oh man, I hope my daughter doesnt take after me!!
    Side note: I love your blog. Your girls are gorgeous and you remind me every time I read about your life that simplicity is beautiful.

  5. hmmm, 13 years ago I was a junior in high school…rockin the “wet hair” 90′s look, know what I mean?? haha

    Beautiful post, I too love to get nostalgic and could spend hours looking through old photos :)

  6. Kelle says:

    One of my favorite posts yet! Oh, I love it! Montana summers make me SWOON. And you were a blonde too! Love how you started this with you and Andy’s story. LOVE!!!
    xoxo
    (And loved your Mama Digs article too)

  7. marti ward says:

    Found you through Kelle Hampton’s blog…she’s great! Your summers look dreamy! It’s been over 100 degrees the past 4 days here in good ole Augusta, GA. And I will soon be purchasing an “Over the Rainbow” GA shirt!

  8. Nicki says:

    hmmm…13 years ago I just finished my junior year in HS and it was the first summer I went to the Winnipeg Folk Festival.

    I also found you through Kelle Hampton’s blog. Really enjoy your posts. :)

  9. sarah says:

    nici! i remember your best hair hair. it’s weird to think that we were 19 13 years ago, while my dude is only 22 now. because he seems way more with it than i think i was back then…i remember visiting you and andy in missoula when you lived together when we were still in college and i hadn’t even had a serious boyfriend. i thought you were so adult. look at us now. how much has changed? love you! must visit soon! i can’t believe how big margot is!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thirteen years ago was 1997 right? I was one year away from graduating from MSU and interning at an office furniture manufacturer. We lived in Coeur d’Alene that summer and swam in the lake and walked all over town that summer.

  11. Sarah says:

    Your pictures make me miss Montana! Let’s see, 13 years ago…I was getting ready to move back to MI after a year long mis-adventure in Washington DC trying to figure out what I wanted to do and if I wanted to be with the man that 3 years later became my husband.

  12. J Scheppl says:

    LOVE this post!!! Brings me back- 13 years ago, I was lovin’ everything simple about summer with my love- my high school sweetheart! We’re married now and have 2 little ones of our own. I love your line about growing together! Beautiful pictures! The one of Margot so intently coloring is incredible!!!

  13. Melissa says:

    I love that photo! And also love getting lost in old albums . . .so fun.

    13 years ago I was fresh outta college, juggling boys and getting ready to travel before moving to NY! Wow. A different lifetime. Little did I know I would take my first yoga class there–which would change my life.

    Just love your mon-wed posts!

    We worry we are depriving Avi bc we have no yard and when I see your photos I know it’s true. Next on the to do list, eh? xoxo

  14. Jesse says:

    13 years ago, my oldest son was a baby and we lived in a 1 BR house that had been my Grandparent’s house. I found you through Kelle’s blog also, but the funny thing is I live in Missoula. Both of you are such great writers!

  15. Rebecca says:

    13 years ago, I was 22, just finishing up my undergraduate degree (Forestry) at the University of Montana. This was the year I realized that my lab mate and friend of four years was the one I would marry. It took him 7 years to propose. We’ve been together ever since. We currently live in Helena, where I don’t currently use my Forestry degree, but own two businesses, b. handmade designs and Frayed Sew Boutique.

  16. amy says:

    June of 1997… I was finished my 2nd year of a philosophy degree and just arriving in Montreal for the very first time, about to embark on the most unhealthy – but definitely one of the most fun-filled – summers! I didn’t know a soul, nor did I know the city at all, but quickly made some close friends at work. We spent a lot of time that summer sipping cold drinks in the hot, cigarette-smoked-filled sun, with portishead and other mellow, dreamy tunes swirling around our young heads. :)

  17. Amanda says:

    Love it and I’m totally going to steal the phrase “big, beautiful life”. Happy anniversary!

  18. Renee says:

    what a great story and you two are still climbing in whatever you can!

  19. LPKG says:

    I was meeting my main man that summer, too! Hiking the Appalachian trail and falling in love. Thanks for reminding me of that anniversary last night at the park, Nici! XOXO

  20. About me: says:

    This is a great post. My husband and I, too, met 13 years ago this year. It was a summer of torment and love, cigarettes and kegs in northern Idaho. He was preparing to leave me for graduate school in Oregon and wasn’t sure about a long distance relationship. I was working at an ice cream shoppe and taking a summer college class on the history of baseball. We cried and left each other and stayed together via the telephone and love letters via post and occasional intense weekends at the Oregon Coast. Thanks for your sweet post and such an honest blog!

  21. CC says:

    What a marvelous post, so inspiring to read first thing in the morning while my babe sleeps in. Thirteen years ago I was not quite ready for college and moving from Montana to NY on my own. While I only lasted there a few months it was such a great experience and I eventually settled into four amazing years at U of M. Has it really been thirteen years???? wow. Thanks for the great writing!

  22. Joan says:

    Pam is right again. Hard to pick a fav. What I find surprising is the 18 years. I remember well the morning you came strolling out of Andy’s room to my surprise. Little did I know at that time what was to come. If I had known maybe I wouldn’t have had a raised eyebrow that morning. Its been a blast. I miss you guys. xoxo

  23. Paige says:

    Love it. Love you and Andy. Love your baby faced photo. Glad to have known you through it all. And look forward to knowing you through the next 20 too. Wanted to post, but don’t need the pinnafore, although it is very cute.

  24. Gillian says:

    I love those pics! What a beautiful post, especially the shout out to Andy. What a catch!

    Can’t wait to see you soon.

  25. jen says:

    what a well lived life in these pictures!
    so fun.
    13 years ago? eek. i had moved to north dakota … because i didn’t know anyone that lived there.
    and then proceeded to meet and fall for my husband. and i haven’t been alone ever since.
    in june of 1997 i was working as a horse trainer for a hippotherapy organization in nd. so. much. fun.

  26. Love your blog, love your pics, love the pinafore!! 13 years ago, I was at UGA, dating a guy totally wrong for me and unaware that the very next year, I’d be meeting the love of MY life!

  27. Becky says:

    What a fun walk down memory lane…let’s see: 13 years ago I would have been 16 and I would have dated my husband for a year by then. Really? Dated? Well, we said we were “going out”, which is funny because we really didn’t go anywhere.

    Anyway, that means that this summer is 14 years, or almost half my LIFE with this man. Crazy, and wonderful :)

    Thanks for the fun post!

  28. Laura says:

    Oy, you made me cry!

  29. FinnyKnits says:

    Happy Anniversary. Happy Dog and Cat. Happy Two Darling Girls. Happy Summer. Happy Two Gardens. Happy Morning Muffins. Happy Chalk Drawings. Happy Post-Nap Cuddles.

    Happy :)

  30. Jennifer says:

    What a great post. The comment about Andy looking up at your ass while you climb made me laugh out loud. I read your post to my sister-in-law, and she confirmed that she would never ever rock climb for a man. Really great post. Congratulations on 13 years together. Here’s wishing the two of you many more bakers dozens of love & happiness.

    13 years ago puts me at 26. Married with no kids, but sailing around the bay with one man and one dog. And it also places me back to the first summer after almost losing Mom to cancer. That was the year that we started buying matching plants for our gardens just because.

    Peace,

    Jennifer

  31. Gramomster says:

    Another beautiful post, with the most gorgeous pictures! I want to live in Missoula too!

    13 years ago we were moving into Seattle. Our kids were 5 and 7. We’d lived in California since 1982. My husband (now of almost 22 years… we met in 1982… I was 16. Eek!!) likes to say, “I moved into California carrying everything I owned on my back. I moved out in a 32 foot truck with in-laws” We did too. Took my mom, 2 siblings, their 5 cats and our 3 cats, and moved from Arcata after we graduated. We all lived in the same house for about 6 weeks before my mom got her own place. It was an interesting summer…

    Now I’ve lived in Grand Rapids, MI for almost 9 years. Longest I’ve stayed anywhere since I left Denver in 1982. Ready to return to the rockies in a big big way. And now I have a grandson that needs the mountains too. The last 13 years have been full of surprises indeed.

  32. Kristin says:

    13 years ago I was just getting ready to start my senior year of high school. If only I know now what I knew then I wouldn’t have taken it all so seriously! Little did I know in a year I’d be meeting my future husband — lucky me!

  33. Patina says:

    oh, i would love to win that pinafore for my bug, who’s just turned two!

    13 years ago, i was getting ready to start high school! eeek! that seems forever ago!

  34. Amy says:

    Every week I marvel at the beauty of your family, Nici. Not the physical aspect, although you are an attractive clan, but the beauty that comes of being the kind of people that will bury a poor baby bird near its family rather than just being grossed out that it’s in your yard. Sometimes it makes me wish I lived in Missoula so my son could grow up surrounded by like-minded people.

    On a much less sappy note, I love that pinafore! My niece would look so cute in it.

    Thirteen years ago I was enjoying my last summer before starting high school and just a couple months away from meeting my first serious boyfriend. (He was a total jerk.) I’d rather talk about the summer when I was 19. Then I was just a couple months away from meeting the man that would eventually be my husband. (Although had you told either of us that at the time we’d have both thought that you needed to seriously consider checking yourself into a mental facility, lol.)

    (P.S. My captcha is “bigitch” which is funny in a mean way because I have a terrible rash on my arms from rescuing a frisbee from the evil clutches of some kind of bush that I am apparently quite allergic to.)

  35. Amy says:

    Oh wow, I have only just realized that I met both of them on the same day (August 2), just five years apart. Weird.

  36. Susie says:

    13 years ago I was living with Becky’s (b. handmade designs) husband who was graduating from college who asked if my now husband could move in with me. After I graduated, my now husband moved in with Becky. Now we have 2 small people and are loving how creative and skilled Becky is. Ah, the tangled web.

  37. Rebecca says:

    Oh Susie, you forgot to say that at that time when your husband moved in with me, my husband also lived with us too!

  38. Auto says:

    Happy 13 years! I am a HUGE fan of Becky and her awesome store! I love it that she is making a living supplying locally made goods to us Helenans. Her purses are awesome! Oh and her skirts oh and. . .

  39. Kara Brown says:

    This was a wonderful post! Loved your story with your hubs….loved your words and beautiful pictures.
    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 19, in college, living life to it’s fullest and studying a bit on the side. :)

    Kara Brown

  40. Kara Brown says:

    This was a wonderful post! Loved your story with your hubs….loved your words and beautiful pictures.
    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 19, in college, living life to it’s fullest and studying a bit on the side. :)

    Kara Brown

  41. Kara Brown says:

    This was a wonderful post! Loved your story with your hubs….loved your words and beautiful pictures.
    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 19, in college, living life to it’s fullest and studying a bit on the side. :)

    Kara Brown

  42. Kara Brown says:

    This was a wonderful post! Loved your story with your hubs….loved your words and beautiful pictures.
    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 19, in college, living life to it’s fullest and studying a bit on the side. :)

    Kara Brown

  43. Kara Brown says:

    This was a wonderful post! Loved your story with your hubs….loved your words and beautiful pictures.
    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 19, in college, living life to it’s fullest and studying a bit on the side. :)

    Kara Brown

  44. TRB Holt says:

    OBTW…for the first time I do not want to be exempt from the give-a-way….no I do not need a pinafore, but do know some special little girl I could give it to :)!

  45. Meghan says:

    Wow, that picture of Margot with the chalk is amazing! Great post all around!

    Can it be that 13 years ago I was about to turn 16?! Wow…I must have been finishing up my sophmore year of highschool and looking forward to a summer at the beach.

  46. Kelley says:

    I’m reading while pumping as I try to get my working groove back so would love to win a pinafore for my little girl.

    13 years ago? I was in college, wearing thrift store clothes with birkenstocks 24/7… Deeply in love with a guy who would break my heart the next year and feeling on top of the world.

  47. RMAinMD says:

    ,,,triple love your “love story”, what a great story “diggy”,,,you and hubby are so cute and those two adorable daughters of yours take right after their parents,,,my favorite photo, hmmm?,,,all of them, margot and you with almost the same “wrinkle-nosed expressions, “priceless”,,, ruby with excess applesauce around her lips (for later) now that’s a Kodak moment,,,great post!
    could my AZ t-shirt be any cuter? ,,,i think not,,,LOVE IT! muchas gracias as they say in AZ,,,13 years ago i was living in AZ, engaged to be married (marriage never happened) and working for IBM,,,today living in MD, working for self and in a really great relationship with “him” who is my best friend,,,

  48. ellen says:

    I can’t wait for your 13 years from now post. A 13 year old Ruby and an even bigger Margot Bea. What amazing girls they will be (and already are, for that matter). Thirteen years ago- I was selling cheese, about to head off to college. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be living on a boat with 2 daughters, ever. But here we are . . . thanks for all the inspiration. Crossing fingers we win a beautiful pinafore!

  49. Dana says:

    Always love your words and pictures!
    13 years ago I was still working for the forest service fighting fires…wow that was a long time ago…

  50. Melissa says:

    What a great story! Loved it! I could totally relate to the hot guy/rock climbing/get a move on part. And Red Lodge and East Rosebud Lake are some of the reasons I moved to MT.

  51. Also found you through Kelle Hampton – you are both beautiful and inspiring, since reading the 2 blogs I have quit my job to be a stay at home mom and I am planting my first garden this year….Thank You for inspiring me.

  52. Love, love, love the pic of Margot on the sidewalk, drawing with chalk. Beautiful, Nici.

    13 years ago, I lived half the year in Santa Fe and half the year in Red Lodge. I was falling in love with food and Montana. Oy.

  53. Peeper says:

    Love the peony with her little ant friend crawling on her :)

    13 years ago I had just finished the first year of my PhD, broke up with my boyfriend, and started the most adventurous year of learning who I was…what an amazing transitional time it was.

  54. smallTown says:

    13 years ago I was 15 – my childhood dog had just died at Christmas, my brother and best friend was moving out and out of state, my mom had just had a life-altering car accident, and my dad lost his job.

    Wow, what a year.

    This was the time of my life where I learned how to be alone and not lonely. An invaluable lesson. A year of growth.

    I know we’re strangers but I enjoy your posts and pictures!

  55. OH!! What a fantastic post. you had me blushing back memories of my own love. wonderfully written :)

  56. cake says:

    everything is photogenic, when you have an eye like you do. some amazing shots in this post!

    also, your garden looks so lush. you guys get a late start up there, but you catch up quick!

    i love the shot of the splash park. it really tells the story of how different it is to live where you live. we have a new splash park like that here, sans the dramatic mountain back drop.

  57. Garry says:

    i met my wife when i was 19. she was 16. we havent looked back. married 7 years later, kids 5 years after that and its been a fun ride. now both of us are in our 40′s and we really appreciate the time we have – we grew up together and that is a tremendous touchstone for us.

    garry

    http://eldoradogardening.blogspot.com/

  58. Mrs. Dunbar says:

    Hi there, I just found your blog through Kelle Hampton’s. I was intrigued because you are from Montana. My husband and I actually just visited Montana last month for the first time. We just loved it. Anyhow, I am enjoying your blog. And that pinafore is absolutely adorable. I have a neice who’d look splendid in it.

  59. mamabrit says:

    Exactly 13 years ago I took my first trip to NYC with my Mom and sisters. I was 13 and couldn’t decide if I loved or hated it. I would also sit across my future hubby in our 7th grade science class. We had just met in 6th grade and never dreamed that someday we would be grown up and in love with this little life of ours. Two subarus, two children, two backyard chickens and one little house :)

    I love reading about your endeavors as a gardener, mama, wife, cook and everything in between.

    Love from Texas,
    Brittany

  60. Ellie says:

    I was laughing so hard at your first paragraph, Nici, that I had to read it to my husband…Hilarious.
    Love the picture of Ruby’s toes and Margot in the distance.
    Your question had me asking my husband about 13 years ago, since my memory is notoriously defective, and he reminded me that 13 years ago in the fall is when we met for the first time (he remembers the exact date of our first date!)–he a freshman, I a sophomore in college–and we dated for a year before separating for seven and then getting together again for good. Unlike you, I ran away from my man because he was too infatuated with me and I was too scared to commit, but slowly over the years, I made my way back to him. Thanks for opening that memory door for me.
    I love seeing the park with the sprinkles…strange that in almost five years of living in Missoula I never saw it, but I didn’t have kids then, which probably explains it.
    Happy summer.

  61. Wesley says:

    Congrats on your 13 year dating anniversary! And 20 years of being in each others lives. Love is a beautiful thing. It’s amazing when you just KNOW that he/she is the one – sometimes at first sight. That is how it worked out with me and my husband. Oh – and I love the old picture of the two of you!

    Thirteen years ago…I was 11 years old. Ha! I was probably running around enjoying the summer. Swimming in the Stillwater/Yellowstone. Hanging out at my Aunt Joanie’s pond with my many cousins. Going camping and spending time at our cabin. :-)

  62. Joanna says:

    would it be weird to put one of those cute pinafores on one of my boys?

    Thirteen years ago today, I had just moved to Missoula three months prior and was frequenting Charlie B’s, smoking American Spirits, getting over a big heart break, and taking 2 am post-bar strolls around town with my future husband, thinking he was the funniest human I’d ever met.

  63. Kim says:

    I have been reading your blog for a number of years but never commented. Your pictures and stories are wonderful.

    13 years ago – I was just begining my master’s program at the UM. Never dreamed I would someday live in Helena with an amazing husband, one beautiful two year old and another girl on the way.

  64. Sage says:

    Love this post! So fun to think about 13 years ago… I was fresh out of college, but not officially graduated until the following winter, Russell and I were together, planning a future, applying for jobs out of state, I had a internship all set up surveying vegetation in eastern WA… I was just 22, but felt 30. I was discontent, ambitious, and so caught up in my life. Looking back, it was the beginning of the path that would lead me to my life today. So much fun looking back…
    xoxo

  65. clove says:

    Ooooh. Love this post.

    13 years ago…was the summer before my senior year in college. I was a vegetarian (I’m now a hunter), I didn’t believe in marriage (I’m happily married) and I did not want children (I am the joyous mother of one and would love to have a whole brood!). So for me, things changed a bit in 13 years (but I have to say, my life has been significantly stable for the last 10). Wonder what the next 13 years will bring?

  66. HilaryHarris says:

    13 yrs ago…i was 19, single with a 9 month old little boy..i was so uncertain of what life would hold for us. oh but it’s been great!! now married to the love of my life and have 3 children, ages 13,10 and 3!

  67. so much to comment on …
    peonies, LOVE them!! (around here they are about done blooming.)
    the amazing pic of Margot drawing, one of my faves before i read it was yours, too!
    wearing nothin’ but undies at the water park, that’s my style (for my littles, not me!)
    oh, the love story and old photo, just awesome!!

    13 years ago for me?
    the summer of 1997 …
    i was dating my hubby, me 19, and him, 24. and it was just the beginning of something much, much bigger!!

    great post, just LOVED it!

  68. Anonymous says:

    Found your blog (and awesome mama digs column) through your friend, Kelle, and can’t stay away! Love your writing and pictures! Oh, and your girls are adorable and your fam is extra cool — from gardening to baking to backyard naked karate kicks!

    Hmmm…13 years ago I was 20 and in college! Over the summer, I worked as a waitress at a local Mexican restaurant. Being single and not having kiddos to take care of, I am not really sure what I did with all my free time! ha!

    Jill B. (Overland Park, KS)

  69. Lucy says:

    Congratulations on building such a lovely life together. Your garden is gorgeous and in fact everywhere in your neck of the woods looks stunning, I can almost smell the fresh air…

    But not quite, I am in smelly London! 13 years ago I was here too, during holidays after my first year at university. I also had just met the man I’ve been with for 10 years, but I didn’t know it then…

    Have a great weekend!

  70. Anonymous says:

    13 years ago, almost to the day, I walked into a casino, sat down at a blackjack table with some friends and looked into the dreamy eyes of the dealer who would become my husband. Yeah, I believe in love at first sight and fate. Thank you, chicky, for asking the question that reminded me of that amazing night.

    Mandy

  71. Justine H says:

    13 years ago I was 21 (YIKES) and living on the Gold Coast of Australia working in a Bar called Shooters, having THE FREAKIN TIME OF MY LIFE. No responsibilities!!!

  72. Karis says:

    I’ve been stalking around here for a couple months, just now commenting. Really enjoy reading your “nuggets.” 13 years ago … I was still in high school … so glad that’s over with.

  73. Summer of 1997 – I was working in Germany and it was amazing. That place is so green and the autobahns have no billboards and I learned to play golf and traveled all over Germany and Switzerland with my dog and visited Berlin with my best friend and my company gave me a gas card and car and we spent many an afternoon/evening sitting in beer gardens, having dinner parties on balconies and visiting quaint towns of 400 years old – oh the nostalgia!

    I don’t have girls but if I won, I know a certain Floridian blondie that would look even more darling in a pinafore!

    I HAD to comment on the peony…so beautiful, and ants LOVE ‘em! V. cute ant, btw, ha.

    – iColossus

  74. Summer of 1997 – I was working in Germany and it was amazing. That place is so green and the autobahns have no billboards and I learned to play golf and traveled all over Germany and Switzerland with my dog and visited Berlin with my best friend and my company gave me a gas card and car and we spent many an afternoon/evening sitting in beer gardens, having dinner parties on balconies and visiting quaint towns of 400 years old – oh the nostalgia!

    I don’t have girls but if I won, I know a certain Floridian blondie that would look even more darling in a pinafore!

    I HAD to comment on the peony…so beautiful, and ants LOVE ‘em! V. cute ant, btw, ha.

    – iColossus

  75. Summer of 1997 – I was working in Germany and it was amazing. That place is so green and the autobahns have no billboards and I learned to play golf and traveled all over Germany and Switzerland with my dog and visited Berlin with my best friend and my company gave me a gas card and car and we spent many an afternoon/evening sitting in beer gardens, having dinner parties on balconies and visiting quaint towns of 400 years old – oh the nostalgia!

    I don’t have girls but if I won, I know a certain Floridian blondie that would look even more darling in a pinafore!

    I HAD to comment on the peony…so beautiful, and ants LOVE ‘em! V. cute ant, btw, ha.

    – iColossus

  76. Summer of 1997 – I was working in Germany and it was amazing. That place is so green and the autobahns have no billboards and I learned to play golf and traveled all over Germany and Switzerland with my dog and visited Berlin with my best friend and my company gave me a gas card and car and we spent many an afternoon/evening sitting in beer gardens, having dinner parties on balconies and visiting quaint towns of 400 years old – oh the nostalgia!

    I don’t have girls but if I won, I know a certain Floridian blondie that would look even more darling in a pinafore!

    I HAD to comment on the peony…so beautiful, and ants LOVE ‘em! V. cute ant, btw, ha.

    – iColossus

  77. Summer of 1997 – I was working in Germany and it was amazing. That place is so green and the autobahns have no billboards and I learned to play golf and traveled all over Germany and Switzerland with my dog and visited Berlin with my best friend and my company gave me a gas card and car and we spent many an afternoon/evening sitting in beer gardens, having dinner parties on balconies and visiting quaint towns of 400 years old – oh the nostalgia!

    I don’t have girls but if I won, I know a certain Floridian blondie that would look even more darling in a pinafore!

    I HAD to comment on the peony…so beautiful, and ants LOVE ‘em! V. cute ant, btw, ha.

    – iColossus

  78. Michelle says:

    13 years ago I was still six years older than the little sister I would love to give this pinafore (spelling)!

    I heart your blog!

  79. Linda says:

    Such a beautiful post, I love it!

    13 years ago, June of 1997, just finished my freshman year of college and my world was turned upside down. I had dated someone seriously all freshman year, someone I honestly thought I would spend the rest of my life with. In late May of ’97, he was critically injured in an accident and almost died. Changed who he was, changed who I was and put me in a downward spiral for the next three years. I pulled through and even though it was hands down the hardest time in my life, I wouldn’t change it because I would not be the person I am today if I had not gone through that.

  80. love this post and your love story. “hold his hands and look into his eyes and push our girls into this world..” beautiful. strong written image. love margot on the sidewalk. love your new sponsor.
    love you.
    p.s. twelve summers ago I fell in love in and with Montana

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  83. Sarah says:

    So sweet! I was 21 and starting my senior year of college at Cornell College in Mount vernon, Iowa. I bet I was enjoying the beautiful midwestern foliage. If I could say something to myself then, I’d say “Don’t waste any time worrying if you’ll get married and have a family; you will. in the meantime, enjoy your free time!!!:)

    happy anniversary

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