Josefina Montoya and Kirsten Larson
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Hey Josefina!                             1.23.08
My horses are managing with the small amount of hay since Mother Nature has been on strike so the horses haven’t actually been eating the hay all winter.  So luckily we haven’t run out of it yet.  :-P  What about you?
Yeah, Christmas was great- we sat around and had a huuuuge breakfast and then opened presents.  I got some cute paper too, see?
Everything’s all slushy outside.  I tried to go ice skating but the ice wasn’t really frozen solid enough so I almost cracked it and fell through, so I’ll just stay inside and sew or something.  How are all your latest projects?  Any new ones?  Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             12.27.07
How are your horses holding out with your hay supply?  Do you still have enough?  Francisca has been very quiet since Christmas when she got coal in her shoes.  Perhaps she has learned her lesson for once and for all!  Well, we can all hope so.  Please thank Anders for this wonderful paper!  I will use it all the time!  I am really excited about starting up on learning more about my remedies again.  I just left my home this morning and now I am sitting on my mattress on
la mesa so that I can keep out of the wolves and coyotes way!  How was your Christmas?  Well, I should get to bed so that I will make it to Mexico City tomorrow morning!
Adios Amiga!  Love, Josefina

Hey Josefina!                             10.4.07
Yeah, we’re almost all out of hay and we really need to cut some more before the real bad weather hits- so far we’ve mostly just had lots of rain and a bit of hail, but we still need to hurry up!!  Luckily the horses haven’t been overly hungry lately so we’re able to spread it out a little bit.  You really need to come over and see our new river-rock fireplace!!  It’s so huge and warm, it literally keeps the whole house nice and toasty.  AND there’s a secret compartment.  I’m really excited about trading day as well, we need to do it soon!!  Yes, I write to Felicity and I used to really enjoy it but lately she’s been really getting on my nerves.  When I said I was making a “milking dress” she wondered if it was going to black with white spots.  HAHA!  If I didn’t know she was being entirely serious, that would almost be funny.  :-P
Anyway, TTYL, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             6.27.07
Our hay is fine, how is yours?  Trading day is going to be so fun!  Papa is planning out what we need to make for you today so we can get going.  Has your burn healed yet?  Cristal came yesterday for stuffy nose, sore throat, shivers, and sneezes.  She was very rude!!!  Then when I brought in the big blue pot for the shivers bath, she was convinced that I was going to fry her in boiling oil until Heather hopped into the bath to prove it was harmless.  Do you write to Felicity?  Has Kaya moved out of her cave?  Soon we have to re-do the adobe on our walls, which is going to be a very long and tiresome project.  How is Peder doing?  Is he crawling yet?  Please write back soon!  Love, Josefina Montoya

Hey Josefina!                             4.30.07
Why do you have warm, wooly mittens on your stationary?  It never gets cold enough where you live to actually wear those, does it?  Haha…
Yeah our ice finally thawed a few weeks ago with a gigantic CRACK and all this water came pouring back down the waterfall again!  That time of year is always kind of scary because you never know which way the river is gonna decide to go- it could decide to run straight through our house, you never know.  Lol.
Yeah I heard about your flood.  Was that because of all the snow melting?  Have you had any patients lately?  Do you know how to heal animals yet?  There are flowers popping up everywhere now- I bet you prolly know what they are all called.  How’s Pimientos?  Still got enough hay?
Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten,                              2/27/07
Has your ice thawed yet?  Ours went a while ago.  Our firewood and hay are fine, I hope that latsts!  I can’t believe I still have 6 more napkins to go!  You would think I would be done by now!  We just finished cleaning our house up after the flood, it was a mess!  I still have a bunch of wood chips all over my room!  Have you had any storms lately?  I certainly hope we won’t get one for a while!  Well, I am in a good mood today because Francisca hasn’t picked on me yet, but it won’t last for long! 
Love, Josefina

Hey Josefina!                             1.14.07
Our firewood supplies are holding up pretty well, but my dad’s worried we might run out in the next three months because the pile is already below the roof-level…hopefully we can go find some more wood one of these days when it’s not snowing nonstop, haha!  How’s your firewood doing?  And your hay?  Now that the New Year’s party is over we all have to get used to doing our chores again, otherwise we’ll have the house completely fall apart around us and the animals will make tons of noise.  Ew.  I also need to work on my weaving, thanks for reminding me!  I want to make some more saddle blankets and them some wall hangings.  AND I need some more clothes so I’ve got my work all laid out in front of me, haha!  What are you doing lately?  Bye.  Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             9.13.06
How is your weaving going?  I still have to make 4 more napkins.  We got a new cooking fuego!  What are you going to dress up as for the masked ball?  I am still not sure what I will be.  My Papa is going to be Zorro!  He will be great as Zorro!  Si, I would like some more queen anne’s lace.  I can add it to the herbs I am drying.  Are you ready for winter yet?  I think we need to trade with you for more firewood.  Love, Josefina

Hola Josefina!                            9.1.06
Oh good, I’m glad to hear that you are still smart and haven’t gotten eaten by the fashion monster yet.  :-P  Right now, Anna is playing with baby Peder and holding his hands.  She plays with him all the time.  Mama is starting to get worried that he’ll learn how to talk like her because he’s around her so much.  That’s what happened to Britta.  She still talks like a baby and she’s 9.  Oops, haha!  Oh, do you need more queen anne’s lace?  Because I can trade some to you on trading day.  Is there anything else you would like to trade for?  Kaya and Speaking Rain are going to move soon because Winter is getting closer- I think they want to build a lodge, but they may have to live in that cave again if it takes too long.  Well, I’m off to sewing circle now.  I guess I’ll see you there!  Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             8.12.06
I like the fashions but I’m not obsessed with them like Francisca is!  And I do not worship the fashion book!!  I only like it because it was very nice of my aunt to give it to us!  Get it?  I wear a skirt, sash and camisa for work, dresses are for fancy occasions.  Aww!!  Baby Peder is soooooo sooooo cute!!!!!!!!!  What is the little cutie pie baby boy doing right now?  Can he talk yet?  I think he thinks my name is gook!  Haha!!  Si, I did look at your meadows and I picked a little of queen anne’s lace, only a little though.  Well, I should go weave or something!  How’s your arm?
Love, Josefina

Hallo Josefina!                           8.14.06
I thought you didn’t like the fashions?!  So what’s with your sudden worship of a fashion book?  Hahahahaha….
I still hate wearing dresses, but I don’t have pants anymore so I have to.  Doing chores, going to school, sleeping, eating, walking, talking, even SWIMMING in dresses!  It’s not very much fun.  But I guess it’s ok that you like fancy dresses.  Whatever.  So Peder is doing just great!  I made him a mobile to look up at while he’s lying on the bed.  Do you have a cure for drooling though?  Because he’s got it really bad, haha!  Also, we just planted a lot of new meadow plants- you might want to come see if there are any useful ones.  Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             8/2/06
I am working on making napkins for my hope chest right now, and I have two out of ten done!  After that I get to make a special Christmas dress for myself!  How is baby Peder?  He is so cute!!  How is your Mama?  She is probably busy with the baby and all!  I got a fashion book from my Tia Magdalena a little while ago with pictures of all the latest stylish dresses in
New Mexico City!  I love it!  It has hairstyles, too!  Hope you are well,
Love, Josefina

Dear Josefina,                            7/18/06
I just started on a new weaving because we finally got the loom re-strung.  It’s blue, gray, white and red, and it’s going to be a saddle blanket for Spirit, because he doesn’t have one at the moment, poor thing.  Mama also wants to start making weavings to hang on our walls as well, so I have a lot to do but its fun, so woohoo!  I just made Peter a mobile so he can look at something when he’s just lying there on the bed.  Sure you can babysit him sometime!
Love, Kirsten

Dear Kirsten,                              6/1/06
How is your arm?  Mama is making burritos at home but, I got locked outside the gates and so I am staying at the Parkington’s.  We are not quite sure of what to do for the festival, but I am sure we will come up with something.  To tell you the truth now, I haven’t woven at ALL practically!  But I will start very soon!!!  Yes, I have been doing lots of chores and I plan to do the laundry today!!  How is your life?  How is your family?  And most of all, how is baby Peder?  He is so cute!!!  I really want to baby sit him!!!  He’s adorable!!!!  Tell him Josefina says hola to his sweet little self.
Well, write back!  Love, Josefina

Hallo Josefina!                           4/20/02006
I haven’t ever tried guacamole!  You should make some at the next harvest day though because it sounds really good.  What is your family doing for the festival?  Were not sure yet, but we’d like to sell yarn and cloth or something.  Are you going to sell any of your weavings?  I can’t wait to see your latest weaving.  Gosh, I haven’t seen any of them since you finished that red and yellow one in September.  You must be SO good by now.  I just cut off the blankets I finished, and I’m working on tying them all off.  I can’t wait to give the fancy blue and white one to Blossom, she’ll look gorgeous in it.  So what else are you doing besides weaving lately?  Lots of chores?
I’ve been doing NOTHING, just like you told me to!  Aren’t I a good patient?  Hehe.  Well, write back!  Kirsten

Hola Kirsten,                              3/6/06
I hear your arm is broken, you should come up to my rancho because I have a cure for it!  Have you ever tasted guacamole?  It is made out of salsa and avacados, it is really good!  How is your weaving coming along?  Are you excited for the festival?  I certainly am!  I don’t really like cooking either, so Francisca does it.  Deer blood is for a weakness cure- you should save the blood you find and maybe you could give some to me since all you do is throw it away.  I really want you to get better soon!  At sewing circles I miss you even more!  Well I should go now.  Love, Josefina

Hallo Josefina!                           2.19.06
Hmmm…my favorite activity besides my favorite activities?!  Haha, um probably I’d pick drawing!  I LOVE drawing.  I can’t wait to start drawing flowers when they begin to bloom later this month.  I don’t really like cooking, that’s more of Anna’s thing.  But I do it a lot because it’s gotta be done three times a day and there are only so many ways I can try to avoid it!  An apprentice is a boy who comes to us under contract to help out while learning a trade that he wants to work in when he is old enough.  So William’s apprenticed to Papa in order to become a farmer.
Ew, deer blood?  How do you “collect” it?  We get it all the time because we find dead deer around that the wolves have killed, but we usually just throw the leftover blood away when we use the meat for venison.  What is it for?
Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten!                             2.12.06
What is your favorite activity other than weaving and riding blossom?  Do you like cooking?  Your mama is a lovely cook!  I hear she is going to have a baby!  Is it going to be a he or a she?  I am always wondering what it would be like if Mama had another baby?  But that would be too many mouths to feed!  Right now Clara is baking some brownies to bring down to her sweet shop, they smell delicious!  What is an apprentice?  I hope he is a good one, whatever it is!  Later today I have to collect deer blood for a weakness cure, I really don’t like collecting deer blood!  What did you think of the last newspaper?  I think it is really unfair that we are always the target of the gossip column and Lissie is not?  What do you think?
Love, Josefina

Hallo Josefina!                           1-22-06
Glad to hear from you, sorry it took me so long to write!  I finally decided to write back to all of my letters because I got letters from all of my penpals and mama was starting to get angry!
A twister is like a hurricane, it takes place in the desert or the plains and is a huge spiral of winds and dust, so we have to take cover in our storm cellar when we see one coming.  It’s under the house, so it’s very secure.  Did you know that William Merriman has signed up to be Papa’s apprentice at the food stand?  That’ll be interesting!  I heard that you’re going to
Mexico City to learn about herbs?  That is very interesting!  I’ll miss you though.  Write me back!  Love, Kirsten

Hola Kirsten,                              1/11/06
Mama and Papa looked up Manuella in Francisca’s new Spanish language book and it is a name!  It is a Spanish name though so you probably don’t know it.  The flood was a long time ago, but we are all very fine and thank you for your concern!  Oh dear, a twister?  Um….what exactly is a twister?  I know it’s a game, but I never knew it had anything to do with a storm shelter!  Whenever we played it at Laura’s house it was really fun!  Right now Francisca and Clara are cleaning the kitchen, Mama and Papa are in the prayer room, Rebecca is weeding, Heather is playing with the chickens and Juan and Antonio are in the waterfall and I am trying to get rid of the hiccups, well I should go now!  Love, Josefina

Hallo Josefina!                           10.16.05
Your names are all really nice- I don’t get Manuella though.  Is that even a name?  I’ve never heard of that one before…
I only have three names:  Kirsten Maria Larson.  But we are both called Maria!  Isn’t that great?!  I heard about the flood up at your place, are you all ok?  Right now my mama is cooking tons of food to take with us into the storm cellar because a twister is heading this way!  We get them here every once in a while- they’re horrible.  Kaya’s going to come into the cellar with us, she just dug a big underground hole and buried all of her important stuff.  It’s kind of strange that both of our natural disasters are happening at the same time…I wonder if it’s a coincidence?  Have you done any weaving lately?  Right now I’m making a bunch of saddle blankets for my horses on the big paddle loom.  My mama’s teaching me the patterns.  Wouldn’t it be fun to have a whole book of patterns to follow?  Then you could just pick one out when you wanted one, and you wouldn’t have to make them all up.  My mama says we’re going to learn how to quilt soon as well, to make blankets for winter.  I can’t wait for trading day to see you and Francisca.  It’s fun to know other girls who have to work hard like I do.  What are the latest things that you’re working on?  How are each of your sisters?  What are they doing right now?  Right now Kaya and my sisters are getting into the storm cellar.  Geez, the rain is super loud now!
Write soon, Kirsten

Dear Kirsten,                    9/9/05
Hi!  It’s just that when you talk about all of your cool stuff I get jealous and crabby!!  I just had to clean up that Francisca made with your dad, I am so sorry!  Did you know that my whole name is Maria Josefina Manuella Montoya?  I think it’s a really cool name!  Don’t you?  How many middle names do you have?  Well, I should go to bed!  Bye! 
Love, Maria Josefina Manuella Montoya

Hiya Jose!                        8/30/05
Well gosh, why do you even write to me if you’re sick and tired of hearing about my life?  If you don’t like riding boots, that’s your problem, but I try to write letters that are all about what I’m thinking, and I mostly think about my riding boots!!
School today was really long, I fell asleep during art.  And I still have to do all my chores and things!  Aaah!  Love, Kirsten

Dear Kris,                        July 22nd, 2005
Oh my gosh!  I haven’t written to you in three months!  It isn’t my fault I haven’t had time to ride Pepper, I let alone am able to sit down through five minutes in a row, I have been so busy and you I bet have been shining your new riding boots and licking popsicles!!  My sister loves Pleasantville and in my opinion she is a show-off.  She gets credit for everything!  Francisca is 17.  I am sorry, but I am sick and tired of hearing about your riding boots!
Sorry!  Love, Josefina

Hey Josefina,                   1/5/05
What’s up with you lately?  I just got back from the new year’s party and I’m really glad its over.  I hate dressing up and seeing everyone else in hilarious frilly dresses and having to keep myself from laughing at all costs can get pretty tiresome after a while.  Your mom looked gorgeous and so did you, though.  I’m glad you guys decided to rebel and wear red.  Go you!  How’s the family?  Love, Kirsten


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