January 16th

Wednesday, January 16th, 2019

I’m a sucker for small-town feels, and T&R’s building in Clearwater never disappoints.

Old brick store front – check.
American flag sticker in the window – check.
Traditional open sign – check.
Old faded advertising – check.
Small, simple, and unassuming – check.


August 22nd

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2018

For me, it always seems as though summer is over when the state fair starts.

So, since the state fair starts tomorrow, I can easily say that this was the most memorable last day of summer I’ve had.

Our friends Cody and Dana leased a plane through our local municipal airport this summer, and we got to go up last night! We’d been talking about it all summer, but it finally worked out for us to go. The weather was absolutely perfect!

Both Cody and Paul are commercial airline pilots, and while they’ve been able to fly together at work, it was fun for them to fly this little Cessna together tonight. Although tonight, Cody was sitting left seat, and Paul took a seat in the right. (The captain always sits left seat, so at work, they normally sit the opposite way).

I expected to be nervous (because really, when am I not), but we took off, and I didn’t get butterflies once. It was such a smooth flight, and I had nothing to worry about with two commercial pilots at the controls. I had a ton of fun.

About 500-750 feet off the ground, it’s easy to follow familiar roadways and recognize houses and farms. So when I saw we were heading east over Beebee Lake, then over Hanover, I figured we were going to fly over the farm.

I had never done that, and it was SO FUN!


And here’s an aerial view of our house (right smack dab in the middle of the image):


When we landed back at the airport, Dana and Brooklyn hopped in with us to taxi back to the hanger. Brooklyn enjoyed the ride!


August 4th

Saturday, August 4th, 2018

Smalls towns can get a bad rap, but I love this one.

Paul and I live in the very far corner of Rogers, the side that borders Corcoran and Hanover. When I tell people we live in Rogers, they automatically think the interstate side of town, so it never fails that I have to explain that we live in old Hassan Township, the “still rural” side of Rogers.

We live in an area that is serviced by a few school districts – Elk River (Rogers), STMA, and Buffalo. I completed kindergarten at Rogers Elementary, in the Elk River school system, but after that my parents open-enrolled my sisters and me in the Buffalo school district. The closest elementary school was Hanover, so that is where we went.

Although it is growing, Hanover is a small town of less than 1,500 people. No grocery store, no movie theater, no auto mechanics. Just a school, gas station, a couple restaurants, liquor store, some miscellaneous small businesses, post office, and 3+ churches.

So every summer, when they host the Hanover Harvest Festival (always the first Saturday in August), Paul and I always try to attend.

This year, our friends Tanner and Christine (by wifely default 😉 ), were a part of the lawn tractor pull event. I had never watched such an event, and was super intrigued, so we wouldn’t have missed it!

Tanner isn’t pictured here (I evidently was too busy cheering when Tanner would pull), but one contestant is hooking up, while another waits in line for their turn.

It was really fun to watch, and it added to the charm of the harvest fest for me. Small town, Minnesota, USA. Where the beer is sold out of the back of a Gator, the kids play on a pile of dirt (See the kid standing on top behind the crowd?), the local farming families wear matching shirts, and we soup up lawn tractors to pull a bob sled.

That makes some people roll their eyes I suppose, but I love it.