now nuggets

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

First, THANK YOU. When my domain was bought out from under me, I wondered if it meant the end of my contributions here, if I was to look to the next thing. I was open to that, even though I feel like I have more to give to dig.

It always seems so cliché when people say I have no words for… but that is how I feel. Words just don’t seem to tell the heartening significance your support and encouragement has meant to me. It was so clarifying and buoying. Thank you for your time, energy, ideas, expertise, emails, quotes, sharing and intention. We win. Thank you.

I am not going anywhere just yet.

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So Chris put my domain up for sale. For $4800. Which made it pretty dang easy. I made a list of 48 things I’d rather spend $4800 on. It was a fun process and really put this in perspective. A couple of my favorites: fund spay-neuter clinics, take all my bffs shopping at Cydwok, go to Spain to see my friend and her boys, send my husband helicopter skiing in Alaska, pay into my kids’ college funds. I intended to post the list here but, you know what? Nah. There is so much more to talk about. Real stuff, right now stuff.

I will say, real quick, that I do care about this unethical situation. I am working with some very smart and generous people and pursuing the unlawful snagging of my url. I’ll keep you posted.

I saw an Alice Walker quote yesterday.

The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.

NOW. now. nuggets.

:: We are finally feeling a little more moved in. We are all snug up in our 400 square foot apartment. We will move into the whole house in June, when our tenant’s lease is up and, thankfully, in the meantime, we we able to store all of our stuff in the garage here. So, we really are quite contained. And if I need, say, that butterfly blanket that would fit perfectly on Ruby’s new bed, I get some exercise climbing over piles of furniture and boxes while my kids cheer. 


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:: Living in tight quarters really isn’t hard. There are a few challenges though. Like the bedroom-kitchen situation. As in, they are the same room.

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And the bathroom is just a tiny closet with a shower and toilet so kid bathing is interesting. So far, the best method is me in the shower with both children for the quickest scrub down in the west.

They are just challenges. Andy will build a temporary wall separating the kitchen from the beds which will create a good noise and visual barrier. The girls will love it because the whole thing will be a jungle gym as the room will be exactly the length of our bed and, to access their bunks, they will climb over our bed.

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On the other side of the bunks, I plan to make a wall out of three old doors behind the couch.

:: I can totally dork out on efficient space use. Against this wall by the front door: all our daily winter gear, diaper covers, kid puzzles, pet food, grocery bags, cat bed and cat perch for food. 

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:: The kitties are finally settling in a bit. Olive is still a little pissed.

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:: My mom has been here for the last 11 days and, man, do we feel thankful for her help. I love my mom a lot and I wrote about her awesomeness in this week’s mama digs: dig’s mama.

:: One thing that makes this small space especially manageable is the big space just out our door. It is so quiet here, so friendly, so open.

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This is why we moved. We moved so our kids could access Montana whenever they want. We are a few blocks from the most perfect swimming hole, a few blocks from single track into wilderness. We have a trailhead in our backyard, a sledding hill in our backyard.

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Endless nature nooks for observing, playing, inventing, exploring. And about 15 kids under the age of six. Oh the stories my daughters will make here. 

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I hope I wake every day and feel what I feel when I wake now: how awesome is this?I think I will. How could I ever take this for granted?

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just above our house, photo by Margot

happy Monday out there.

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

77 Responses to now nuggets

  1. Annie says:

    I can’t imagine fitting our family of four plus two cats into a 400 square foot apt – but seeing how you’ve got it all set up, looks cozy and organized. I am guessing it is easier knowing it is temporary and knowing your next destination has so much space to roam.

  2. you make me cry tears of joy. I’m so glad I get to peek into this life all the time.

    your stories make such a huge part of me feel whole. thank you for that. ;)

  3. Heard about how you lost your domain name from Kelle Hampton. I love your photography. My husband and I are in a 600 sq ft apt and I thought we had it rough!

    I’m Brittany by the way. Fellow blogger momma. Feel free to check out my page if you’d like.

  4. Finish my basement! Yeah, $4500 would be great for that! Until then, I will just have to enjoy the L-hill and Greenough Park.

  5. mrsdejo says:

    My mother-in-law puts a little blow up pool in the bottom of her shower when the grandkids come. I don’t know what your shower looks like but they are flexible so I’d think they’d fit in most…

  6. ~ jessica says:

    I love that you made a list of things you would rather spend that money on! Would you even really want that old URL back, after all that negative energy? Best to move on and make a fresh start. Besides, the symmetry with your home and website both moving is hard to beat; you couldn’t have planned that. Blessings!

  7. Oh, friend! I am so excited for you guys. I can’t wait for summertime – pics at the swimming hole. Dreamy!

  8. Kelly says:

    I love that Alice Walker quote (things that make you go hmm…). Glad to see you’re settling in. I think I will laugh every time I see “that cocksucker” in a photo.

  9. @jessica, I love that you call it symmetrical. Perfect.

    @Katie, come visit!!!! (after June. I mean, you could come now but it might be a little weird with four to a bed) :)

  10. Marci says:

    Hi Nici … love this post and I’m do sorry to hear about your URL. I hope you end up getting it back. I noticed that your Instagram profile URL is still the old one – thought you might want to update it to the new one. Good luck!

  11. KWQR says:

    Love the tribute to your mama… beautiful words! All of that unconditional love she has given you shines through in how you are with your girls. Your small apartment & wild outdoors combo makes me think of “Little House on the Prarie”… a girlhood fantasy of mine to have such adventures.
    Your positive attitude is an inspiration!
    xo
    Kate

  12. Jessica says:

    Sucks about your url, but your outlook on the other hand, does not suck at all. My kids would totally love that space. Heck, in our house we have lots of space, yet we’re all practically on top of eachother anyway–400 sq feet would be about right :) I’m sure your girls are loving it–like a little adventure/vacation! Glad you’re still writing (and sad to think that you wouldn’t be anymore!)

  13. Wimmer Girl says:

    Chris knows he is a bad person. There are such better, more honorable ways to make money. If he believes in happy endings, he will come around. If he doesn’t, well, he will spend the rest of his life “ducking” waiting for it to “come around.”
    So excited for you and your family. Your positivity is infectious.

  14. @Marci, Thanks! I have changed it many times and I think I finally saved it correctly.

    @Jessica, Oh I’ll write no matter what! It was this blog I briefly questioned. You know, just wondered if it meant this particular chapter was closing. I came around pretty quickly. I like it here, no matter the dot whathaveyou. :)

  15. I commend you for your forward positive momentum with this URL issue. I cheered when I read your words about 48 things you would rather do with $4,800. Strange how going through that stress and the exercise places your life into a sharper perspective. Good luck with the ultimate resolution fighting these douche bags.

    The space where you move and breathe (physically and cyber-wise) encompass your your heart and your family. Just. So. Perfectly. And from former posts where you hint about your love to organize, this new space must have been a wonderful challenge. Kudos dear. Enjoy the overlap of all in a compact space.

    Lastly your post about your Mom. Oh. She’s beyond beautiful, selfless, and caring. She’s a wonderful teacher, friend, and that angel who seems to handle it all. You are all blessed. And it’s simply awesome to have a mother who is so everything – that you doubt that you could ever fill her shoes. That was my mom. My feet feet still feel so small.

    Welcome home Nici.

    -Jennifer

  16. Judybusy says:

    I’m so glad you decided to continue to write in this format! I’ve said more than once how I look forward to reading about your adventures and your hard-won attitude of “It will be OK.” I do hope you get some satisfaction (in the legal sense) from the URL situation. People shouldn’t be allowed a free pass on crappy behavior just because you wanna be all peace out.

  17. Sarah says:

    We think life should be lived outdoors too. Our house is humble (by the standards around us here in Sydney) but we have a big rambling garden, a long gently sloping driveway for racing bikes down, creeks to explore and a dam for fishing and swimming just a block away. I can’t think of a greater gift to give to kids than the freedom to play and explore.

  18. Eva Marie says:

    Loved reading this.. my family and I were on a similar adventure back in January last till August. We sold out house on a whim to help my BIL with his three kids (wife just up and left). It was challenging and adventurous all in one. We lived in a basement that looked very much like your space and my life of a mother of one quickly started looking after a big family of 7. It was wild and when we bought our own home again it was that much more glorious.

    There will be times you love everything about the simplicity of it and there will be times you want to scream on the top of your lungs… but that makes it feel real. I love that…

    Enjoy your adventure and glad I found you again :)

  19. So excited to have your updated address! I would forget that the link I had saved didn’t work until I clicked it only to get that dumb page which was not you … always made me sad and then mad cause I figured it was something about someone not playing nice. Love your new temporary digs. :)

  20. Jill says:

    I love that quote and I quickly passed it along to a friend who desperately needs to hear that. Your apartment looks so cozy!! I’m so glad I found your new URL. I was so confused when I tried to relax and read your blog and it was missing. =)

  21. Annie says:

    We live in a small space as well (more than 400 sq ft though!) and I am constantly nerding out on how to fit all that our family of four needs (and wants). We live just outside of the city, so we don’t have the wide open awesomeness that you do. Still, we get out so much more because of having so little space indoors and I think it makes me parent better, too. I can’t ever say, “just go play in the basement.” We don’t have one!!

  22. Kelly Cach says:

    You and your sweet life. You get me every time.

    I am a blubbering mess right now…barely able to see the keys. I have wished my whole life for a mom like that. But I AM thankful for my experiences though. They’ve made me more determined to be the kind of person and mama I am today.

    Your mom is SO radiant! And I love that it didn’t take “Mother’s Day” to prompt you to write such a moving tribute.

    More blessings to you,
    Kelly

  23. Maria says:

    Yay for the .net!! I like this place. I’m so glad you’re sticking around. Yours is one of my favourite blogs. Much luck with your move. The house looks cozy & awesome! We always seem to do better with less.

  24. ctb says:

    dont you dare go anywhere!

  25. Blair says:

    awwww…. great post:). love that you’re embracing Montana winter, love the use of ‘dork out’ in a sentence, love the cool factor of all of you living in a 400 ft space and love the new domain. Very cool, very fit for a new year;). xox, Blair

  26. TRB Holt says:

    JUST saw this….cruised thru the pix…back tomorrow to comment!….LOVE

  27. Melina says:

    Ooooh girl you asked for it!! I’m going to leave comments so lengthy and involved and you’re going to have to read all of them!!

    Okay, SO. We win over that asshole- sorry- a**hole- who stole your domain. We won. I love it. And I loved surfing around the blog world and facebook and seeing your story pop up and the rallying that followed.

    15 kids under the age of six? Oh, you guys are SO lucky. I grew up on 200 acres of Vermont forest and field. My heart and soul belong to that place. However…I was LONELY. I used to hunt around every day during the summer, just walk everywhere, alone, trying to find maybe….a house? A house that had another 9 year old girl and also a baby to play with (I was way into babies) to play with, and also a store that sold candy. I kept looking for years. One day I found a trail….the Appalachian trail. Sometimes I’d see hikers. But usually, I found nothing.

    I developed an imagination and independance and all that. But still? Yeah. I’d have traded that in for neighbors.

    However….now I live in a City and even though it gets me down every now and then, I still think “We live like- NEXT to people. People! How cool is that!!” Once I was telling someone about my new neighborhood and I go, “And you’ll never believe it, but there’s a 7-11 on the corner!” My friend was like, “oh that’s too bad.” and I was like “what?? I can go buy a COKE!! any time I want!!” (Yeah. I’m almost 27.)

    A trailhead in your backyard? Rings a bell. Priceless. WOnderful.

    I love the picture of the sunny table with a bowl of fruit. So beautiful.

    I’m so excited to read about this new little temporary cozy respite. I LOVE it.

    Much love
    And then some more,

    Lina

  28. Chanalesings says:

    Your apartment is just the norm in our brooklyn neighborhood. Glad ure making the best of things!!

  29. Seelife3d says:

    tell me about your boots?!?!

  30. Marti says:

    “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”

    I needed to read that quote. Thank you.

  31. Tonya says:

    I am so impressed with your space management! 400 sq ft is small! I was wondering how your animals were handling the move, my kitties would be pissed too lol Love your back yard, I cannot imagine walking outside to mountains. I have never seen a mountain in real life, we have swamps :/

  32. Jean says:

    It’s looking good! Love the back yard.

  33. Daniele says:

    oh I love the mama digs…I reflected a lot on the giving of mothers yesterday as I spent the day at my great-grandma’s funeral. She was 2 months shy of 96 and spent her life giving to her kids and grandkids, all the way down to my kids- her great greats! She never wanted anything in return except our happiness. That’s the soul of a mama. My grandma’s memorial card wrote: “When through one woman a little more love and goodness, a little more light and truth come into the world, then that woman’s life has had meaning.”

    Amen.

  34. Jill says:

    You are the coolest, Nici. Way to go on managing your small space. Memories in the making! Kudos on moving forward with your new URL not letting Chris “win”.

    LOVED mama digs: dig’s mama. Wow, your mom sure is amazing! Beautiful tribute to her!

    Jill B (Overland Park,KS)

  35. Natalie T. says:

    just about the coziest prettiest snug home ever. it’s big in all the right ways. congrats on the move!

  36. FinnyKnits says:

    You’re pretty brave and powerful, sister, which is why people love you and seek you out. You could move to any URL and we’d come along.

    The dude who sold your site can just kiss $4800 worth of my ass.

  37. Jamie says:

    Such a disappointment the way people behave as it relates to your domain…but good for you for moving on. People will find your new url…I did and so glad I did.

    Hoping in time you will be able to update your recipes links so we can access them again… And would really love to be able to see your recipe for laundry / dish detergent!

    Happy Tuesday!

  38. April says:

    Your new (temporary) space is looking great!! Tiny space living is not for everyone, but it does help when you have a large outdoor space to flow into.

  39. Carly says:

    I love your blog. Plain and simple. I love the inspiration I feel after reading your words, seeing pictures of your family fitting in a small space, seeing your girls exploring big spaces. I’m glad you’re not going anyway just yet.

  40. Ellie says:

    dig, more inspiring than ever. the minimalist lifestyle fits you perfectly, and the unlimited access to nature makes me want to chuck everything beautiful we worship here in Northern California, pack up our few belongings, and move to where you are. don’t know what others have said, but I hope you’ll keep writing–here or elsewhere, on paper or in a cloud.

  41. TRB Holt says:

    I like what you have done to your new digs Dig!

    Your new location is indeed awesome, has such a great feel to it. In the short time I was there I loved seeing all the people your age with their small children~yes Margot and Ruby will build unforgettable memories & friends there! As for “tight quarters”, like Andy said to me, “we just need to make like we are camping”! Who doesn’t love camping! I remember I knew we had expanded our living space when I had to plug into more than one outlet to vacuum our house! Plus, when you move into a larger space it will feel better than ever!

    Margot & Ruby, I loved spending so much time with you in December and January. You two make me burst with pride; love showing you off!

    Margot~I will have to brush up on my Fairytale story telling, soon you will be correcting me! I Love You A Bushel & A Peck!

    Ruby~you are full of it!….as it should be! I “wook” forward to our next visit, it won’t come soon enough! You Are My Sunshine!

    Love to all!
    xoxo, Mom/Gram

  42. I love your mom’s comment! My Grandma used to tell me, “I love you a bushel and a peck.”
    it was so nice to be reminded of her today.

  43. Random comment of the day: Could you please repost your recipe for laundry detergent? I searched your blog, found one of the posts that it was mentioned in, and clicked on the link and….well….I couldn’t get there from here. Really want to make my own, powdered kind and have been meaning to write down your recipe. Thanks.

  44. Random comment of the day: Could you please repost your recipe for laundry detergent? I searched your blog, found one of the posts that it was mentioned in, and clicked on the link and….well….I couldn’t get there from here. Really want to make my own, powdered kind and have been meaning to write down your recipe. Thanks.

  45. Random comment of the day: Could you please repost your recipe for laundry detergent? I searched your blog, found one of the posts that it was mentioned in, and clicked on the link and….well….I couldn’t get there from here. Really want to make my own, powdered kind and have been meaning to write down your recipe. Thanks.

  46. Random comment of the day: Could you please repost your recipe for laundry detergent? I searched your blog, found one of the posts that it was mentioned in, and clicked on the link and….well….I couldn’t get there from here. Really want to make my own, powdered kind and have been meaning to write down your recipe. Thanks.

  47. Random comment of the day: Could you please repost your recipe for laundry detergent? I searched your blog, found one of the posts that it was mentioned in, and clicked on the link and….well….I couldn’t get there from here. Really want to make my own, powdered kind and have been meaning to write down your recipe. Thanks.

  48. Lisa says:

    Thank you, Dig for keeping your blog…I really enjoy reading it! You have designed your 400 sq ft very well! It should definitely make you all a little “closer” :)

  49. clarita says:

    where did you get the silver mirror in the picture by the front entrance?? i have the exact same mirror that i bought in juarez, mexico many, many years ago!

  50. Amy says:

    I just love your moms comments – they are always so sweet and absolutely full of pride!
    Love how you are managing in your tiny little space, it will feel like a mansion when you finally move into your real place!

  51. Sarah says:

    first time commenter, but a reader for a while!

    i love your blog, and will follow you wherever you go! you remind me so much to RELAX and enjoy life! between your blog, and kelle’s, i feel you’re both making me a better person! so thank you for that!!

    and i hope you win the url war! :)

  52. Jody says:

    So – I an unclear since I am new. Is this your final destination? Just curious because it is quite tight. Love your blog.

  53. Kim Johnston says:

    via mamalode.com:

    ‘She loves to give and needs nothing in return’

    As a bit of a ‘doer’ myself I know that the reward your mum gets from being useful in your time of need is immeasurable X

  54. Kelsie Bakeman says:

    via mamalode.com:

    When my mom amazes me with generosity she always replies,” you’ll do it for your kids one day,” and I will. Mom’s are wonderful.

  55. trbholt says:

    via mamalode.com:

    OH what a beautiful tribute, you are so worth any time I can give you and your amazing family….I love you so much!
    Mom

  56. Jaim says:

    via mamalode.com:

    What an awesome role model, helper, grandma and MOM! trbholt, you rock and Nici, you are a lucky girl and so are your daughters and so is your husband. Glad you got it all done and had room for some love!

  57. tina r says:

    via mamalode.com:

    this made me weepy for my mom, who is way overdue for a visit. she shows up, gets to work, doesn’t push an agenda, and doesn’t judge. among many other things,she answered my partner’s call for help at the depths of my postpartum depression/anxiety 3 years ago, sleeping on our couch for 2 weeks. she helped me find the strength to be a mother when i thought i could not. i am so lucky.

  58. Stacey says:

    via mamalode.com:

    How lucky you are to have a wonderful, supportive Mom.

  59. Jen says:

    via mamalode.com:

    This completely had me weeping. So touching. What a wonderful tribute.

  60. Jenn R. says:

    via mamalode.com:

    This was good for my mama heart. Such a fantastic way to approach life and parenting. I will now say “So, what will be most helpful to you today?” every day to my kiddos. Thank you.

  61. Jen says:

    via mamalode.com:

    This post was lovely and made me sad because I miss my wonderful mom so much and wish she was still here. She was fun and ready-to-go but she didn’t always give of herself like your mom (in fact, when I was 90 weeks pregnant [it felt like it anyway] with my daughter and she was spending the weekend, she turned to me and said “Well? When are you going to have this baby? I’m BORED.), but she was awesome. I hope I get to do the same for my kids one day.

  62. Amy Cappelli says:

    via mamalode.com:

    What a wonderful mama you have! And what a moving tribute you have written!

  63. Sarah says:

    via mamalode.com:

    Now you make me miss my Mum. She says exactly the same to me “Now, what can I do to make life easier for you”…. then takes over running the house when she is here. I finally get to pay her back in a few weeks. She has to leave her home after it was devastated in the earthquakes in NZ. And we have a rental property she can live in while they rebuild. ….. but in typical Mum style she is already planning how she can clean it, do up the garden and generally fix it up for us while she is living in it.
    I know from talking to friends not all Mums are so amazing. We are blessed.

  64. Abby says:

    via mamalode.com:

    I am so happy to put my hand up and say ME TOO!! to this post….. I got one of the good mama’s too!

  65. Deb Bratton says:

    via mamalode.com:

    Nici, your mom is an incredibly hard worker and a great organizer as I have been witnessed to this many times. Just as her mom was for her (and me), and as my mom was for me. Someday you will pay it forward with your own daughters. That’s what Moms do!

  66. Katie says:

    via mamalode.com:

    This is awesome. Makes me wanna go hug my mama and tell her how awesome she is.

  67. via mamalode.com:

    What a beautiful and wonderful Mom you have been blessed with! I can say the exact same thing about my Mom! She is a wonderful woman as well

  68. Katie S. says:

    via mamalode.com:

    I love that you were at the MN Landscape Arboretum! I grew up in MN…20 min. away from there & it is still our most favorite place to visit every time we come “home”! Mom’s are the best…I can only hope to be that active & helpful for my girls when they have little ones of their own!

  69. rebecca says:

    via mamalode.com:

    ,,,your mother’s love for her family reminds me of the love my own mother has for hers. isn’t it beautiful? and oh by the way, your mother is beautiful and you look just like her!,,,

  70. Oh my, I love your blog. I just found it, thanks to Kelle Hampton. Your bit of Montana looks absolutely beautiful.

  71. Angelina says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  72. Jessica says:

    I think it is unfortunate that your domain was taken. However, I feel like you have spent quite a lot of energy “letting it go” and “not spending energy on it”. If your website truly does provide for your family I would assume it is your responsibility to keep it up to date. You can’t blame a company who buys popular domains. It might not be nice but it is fair and there are worse things happening in the world. Don’t you think you should have known more about your domain in general instead of assuming it was fine? I mean, it’s your BUSINESS. Why were you not educated about it? Sometimes friends come to the rescue and help fix things which is really lovely but not always effective. You can’t count on being able to talk your way out of things by being naive. I love to read your blog, I am a fan. I think you have a beautiful family and appreciate your point of view. However, much like the whole camera ordeal this bothers me because it feels so dramatic. It seems like this website has gone to your head.

  73. heidi gilbertson says:

    via mamalode.com:

    well i have to say your mama is one special lady and i have experienced her joie da vie first hand! and i LOVE that no matter what the catastrophe, she’s always there to help with her beautiful smile on! i’m thankful for her too!

  74. @Jessica, I am thankful I keep learning in this life. There is always room to grow, with grace and appreciation. It was interesting to learn about the trademark laws that protect us and to learn how I can better stay on top of those businessy things I am not so great at. It is also interesting to hear your perspective on domain squatting. I suppose some aspects of capitalism feel fair to some and unfair to others. Thanks for reading.

    Warmly, Nici

  75. @clarita, I bought that mirror about 10 years ago in Tijuana!

  76. @Melina, I love your story and the visual of you stumbling upon the AT. Good stuff, sister.

    x