Monday, July 26, 2010

Norwegian Musings

Eating healthy isn't always easy, especially on a tight budget! Matt and I have tons of Ramen in the cupboard, and we've been trying to find ways to use the Ramen in a healthier way than the traditional method. A few days ago at the grocery store I found a bag of veggies called "Scandinavian Style Veggie Blend." I had to have it! Green Beans, Peas, Onions, Carrots, and Zucchini. I don't really understand why that makes it Scandinavian, but it was enough to make me giggle, and buy the veggies! Matt's idea was to grill a chicken breast then throw that in with some Oriental flavored Ramen and the Scandinavian veggies. Good idea, great way to use up Ramen in a sorta healthy way...but it was way too salty for me. Oh well, there's always next time!

While cooking the veggies however, Matt and I had a discussion about Norwegian food. He asked me if there were any real Norwegian dishes that I actually liked. (He of course was thinking about Lutefisk...and as we all know...that stuff is really nasty!) I came back with Lefse and Rosettes, only two of the greatest food inventions in the world! But, after that I came up empty. So, if you feel so inclined, let me know what some of your favorite Norwegian foods are! I know someone can come up with something good I'm forgetting!

And now for something completely different, another view of Montana to take your breath away. :)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Motivation comes from different places, and I've had lots of it in the last two weeks!

Knitting: I tend to have lots of projects on the back burner, and even more ideas of projects behind that list. Sometimes it's hard to actually sit down and make something, or finish something you've started. This website and our Etsy page is helping, so is the prospect of upcoming craft fairs. I even had an order for a Dragon! The biggest motivation for my knitting however, was moving into a completely unfurnished apartment, with no money for new cleaning, bathroom or kitchen supplies! Thus came the search for cotton to make a dishcloth and matching handtowel for the kitchen, and a nice bright yellow handcloth for the bathroom. Next on the list of emergency (and non-emergency) apartment knitting is a felted wool oven mitt and pillows for the couch!

Job Search: Along with the new apartment come a lot of new bills...if I want to get on the internet in my own house I need to have cable installed, and since internet is like air to me...they are coming on friday. There's also an electric bill to pay every month, food stuffs, laundromat when our dryer isn't working (which it hasn't since we moved in) and of course the biggie, RENT! This turned my second job search into turbo mode, with interviews and applications increasing two-fold since last friday.

Exercise/Healthy Eating: Our new roommate has a wheat allergy, so to accomodate her Matt and I are trying new healthier options...sometimes. :) I do love my breads, grains and pastas! We've also been trying to go hiking at least twice a week at the M, but have only been making it about once a week or less. A friend of mine posted some pictures from our camping this past weekend, and after seeing myself I got the biggest spurt of motivation of all! Looks like more hiking, and fewer bagels are in my future! M, here we come!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Revenue Flats

Not only did Matt and I move into our new place this weekend, we also went camping! Our friend Zach took us to a National Park called Revenue Flats. Apparently there was a volcano a long time ago, and the ice shelf that moved through this area pushed the rocks from the volcano around, and now there are tons of rock formations all over this park. We spent one evening and one morning wandering around looking at cows and rocks. It was awesome! There's a lot to see at that park, so we're hoping to go back someday and maybe climb a few rocks.

I'm also working on some emergency knitting for the apartment! We need hand towels for the kitchen and bathroom, and a dishcloth for the kitchen. Lucky thing I have tons of cotton available for the job! Pictures to come! Happy Monday Everyone!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Almost Sunny in Wisconsin

We've had a long week of heavy rain and storms.  Parts of the area were hit very hard with lots of trees and power lines down.  We lost a few trees and branches.  Saturday was our 34th wedding anniversary and we spent the day working and playing in the Karner Blue Butterfly Festival parade.  We thought about going back to town for the evening festivities but another storm blew in and we stayed home.  I'm busy working on projects for the open house at Allen Creek next Saturday.  Besides the hand crafted items we are also going to have an area for yard sale items.  I opened a tub from the basement and found all kinds of treasures!  Some are even going to the yard sale!  I pulled weeds in my garden.  The sheep love weeds!  I found two cucumbers, several peppers and tomatoes are growing and I hope I'll have ripe tomatoes before Becky and the kids get here.  The mosquitos are bad in the garden, I put on bug spray but I ddn't were my mosquito net hat!  We have bats in the barn and you all know how much I love bats or anything that flies.  Randy reminded me about how many bugs a bat will eat in a night and our bats are huge so they should be eating more than the average bat!  They make a mess in the barn and we wish we could get them to move somewhere else like  the woods! 

Kirsten is in the middle of a move to a different apartment so she might not be writing for a few days.  Make it a great week and I'll get pictures up as I finish some of my projects.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Good Hike

Matt and I went to the M again today. The M is a great local hike here in Bozeman, Montana. You can take the hard side, which goes straight up, or you can take the easier side...but when you aren't in shape, it doesn't matter what side you take! We ended up taking another trail, which led away from the M itself. It was a darker trail, less traveled, and not as steep a climb! I might not wake up in pain tomorrow!

We found some really pretty flowers that gave me a few different ideas for yarn colors! There are a ton of purple flowers here in Montana, and the hillsides are covered in green grass, purple, blue and yellow flowers. Someday I will make some yarn that will do these hills justice! Now, I'm back to knitting, so hopefully soon I can post some pictures of said knitting!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Sense of Accomplishment

You know how good it feels when you finally finish a project that has been in the works for far too long? Well, I haven't had that feeling today. I've been working on Matt's Mitts, flap top fingerless mittens I designed especially for my smoking boyfriend to wear while outside in the winters smoking. (I keep hoping that by the time I finish them, he won't need them!) Anyway, I cast on in June of 2008, and they have been in a state of perpetual half-finished-ness since then. I got a great deal of work done on them this week, even with ripping out the flap top twice now, but realized today that I don't have any good buttons. So, they will wait some more, at least until I have proper buttons.

I did however attatch a button that fell off a pair of pants, so mini sense of accomplishment there!

Since I have no images of finished knitting, I will leave you with an image of our latest jaunt around town. The lovely Bozeman, Montana everybody!!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I'm so excited that we finally have this up!

I can't wait to upload pictures of things we are working on and what's going on here in Wisconsin. 

The sheep and Gracie the llama are very happy! We were almost out of hay and I was worried I was going to have to take them to yards that need mowing. Happily, my hay supplier came thru for us and delivered enough to fill the barn! We are supplementing their diet with weeds from the vegetable and flower garden. Yes, I'm growing a great crop of weeds! I'm also growing a few other tasty things for the sheep and lots of tomatoes and peppers to make salsa for us.
Allen Creek Country Store is having a day on the farm on July 24th, several crafters have signed up and the event will be used as a fund raiser for the local boys and girls club.  Since I normally knit hats, mittens, slippers, and scarves I thought I should make something different for the summer months, so I'm knitting sheep and llamas using wool from my sheep and Gracie.  I also recently made a hot water bottle cover for my neice as part of her wedding shower gift. I got the idea while listening to Kelly's pod casts from Knit Picks, she has mentioned several times how much she loves her hot water bottle!  For a while I thought I was going to have to give my niece a combination hot water bottle and douche bag, which I found very amusing, but in the end a good friend found a regular hot water bottle for me! Why would I give a gift of a hot water bottle cover?  Because when she's climbing into bed on a cold Minnesota night she can warm up her toes and think about how nice and warm it was on the Caribbean Cruise honeymoon!   I have orders for a few more and I want one for myself! 

The other project I'm "dying" to get started on is dying some of the 40 pounds of yarn from our sheep that just came back from Blackberry Ridge.  I've been taking pictures of flowers in the yard and I plan on using some of them as inspiration for color ways. I was going to start today but I didn't get home until after 4 and Randy really doesn't like the smell of cooking wool when he wants to eat supper! Oh well, there's always tomorrow!


Hello from Montana! My name is Kirsten, and I am the daughter of Randy and Pam Bjerke who started this business venture in the early 2000's. We decided to start a blog so that any readers or customers will know what we are up to, and so Mom and I can show off our knitting to each other from a distance!

I'm relatively new to Montana, having only moved here in March 2010. My boyfriend Matt and I have become enchanted with all the beauty and all the things you can do here! It's difficult to focus on my knitting when I'm distracted by hiking, nature trails, steep mountains, and flowing rivers.

My friend Zach, a photography major at MSU, has decided that I should make special teddy bears for a special store in our hometown of Black River Falls, Wisconsin. I think these "Jerry Bears" will fit in nicely with the other items for sale at Funktional Junction or Funky Junk as the locals call it.

Happy Saturday Everyone!