Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Ole and Lena Ski Colorado

Quite a few years ago my Dad gave me these hand carved gnome skiers which are named Ole and Lena. As you can see from the photo Lena is 'lena down the hill' if you get what I mean? He actually carved these fun characters and I still don't understand how the whole process of wood carving works. I do not have the visualization to see the final carved piece in a block of wood. Wood carving is among one of my Dad's many, many talents. Yes Dad, you are "uber talented"! And yes, I just used the word "uber" in a sentence.

Back to Ole and Lena. Normally these gnomes would be cross country skiing which is kind of like running on skis. You use your skis and poles to move your body across the snow which takes some serious strength and endurance! In Scandinavian countries cross country skiing was used as a way to get from point A to point B. It was also used during hunting as it was an easy way to get around in these snow covered areas. Cross country skiing has evolved into a recreational sport and gets your body into excellent shape. Trust really does.

But Ole and Lena were getting tired of working so hard while skiing. They decided to take a trip to Colorado for some downhill skiing. Now of course they were interested in the big time ski areas like Aspen, Telluride and Vail but their budget was tight (they are after all wood carvings). They drove all the way to Colorado from Minnesota to check out some smaller more intimate ski areas. They were pleasantly surprised when they found areas such as Loveland Ski Area, Wolf Creek Ski Area and Monarch Mountain Ski Area. These are just a few of the smaller more "wallet friendly" ski areas in Colorado.

As you can see Ole and Lena had a gorgeous day of skiing in the mountains. Ole was trying to impress Lena by dropping off some cliffs into the fresh powder but not to be outdone Lena was right on his tails. That is some "sick air" you guys! I hope you stuck the landing. Eventually the couple had to get back to reality (you and kids back home) but their time in Colorado was so incredible they are planning a return trip for next season. Until then...keep on skiing. If a carved gnome can do can you!

Ski ya later....Anne
(see what happens when you spend too much time start playing with and talking to dolls that don't talk back) Scary! See "Crazy" Gnarls Barkley....

The happy couple...


  1. I am sure Dad knows much more about "gnome culture" than I do...and wow! look at Lena...vavavoooom! Anne

  2. OK Anne-Marie, YOU get the prize!! I know that Jim Henson is not with us anymore,but......the two of you would have made a great team. Have you ever thought about taking your show on the road as Grandma Stafford once asked Mark?? Just a thought.
    All I can say right now is," I'll have what she's having".

  3. To all of the non-Johnstone readers out there (if there are any!), the top photo is actually looking out to Anner's deck !!

  4. I need to get out more! I am playing with carved gnomes! What is happening to me? hahahaha :) Anne

  5. Like I said Anne-Marie, I'll have what she's having and I MEAN IT!! I have some of Dad's gnomes here. I think I should fly to Colorado with them and have a good ole downhill ski party. I, however will will bring cross-country skis and play it safe. I'm SCARED of mountain slopes!!

  6. That was to funny! I was reading your blog and work and almost fell off my chair laughing. What I would like to know is "who in the Johnstone family modeled for Dad when he was carving Lena"? I can only think of one lady that had that shape and she wasn't related to us Johnstone women. One funny story about Anner though! When she was living up the road from where she is now, she swore that Lena was actually skiing in the house that she was renting. Every morning Lena would be on the floor so Anner thought that she was skiing at night. Maybe that is when she started talking to gnomes. tess