Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Snow and Grass

How can one have snow and then green grass the next day? Just live in Minnesota. Yesterday we awoke to another light April snow, today we awoke to green grass. As I looked out the window I was reminded that soon the riding lawn mower would be removed from the shed and I would be making the passes, back and forth across our lawn in summer gear. Woo Hoo!

The joy of watching the birds peck and hunt in our front and back yards is a spring time joy. We have a pair of robins that squat under our deck eaves, alternating each year. They use one next one year and the other the next. I wonder which nest it will be this year; the robins have been hunting in the yard a lot lately. I have not seen the flickers yet. They come to our back yard each spring, a sure sign that spring is here and seed time will begin.

The river is finally starting to drop from the high of over 16 and 6/10 feet. It runs wild and free, way out of the backs and onto the fields still. It is receding finally. It is going to be a very late seed time this year and we probably won't be able to see all of our fields. The field north of Badger is the only field that looks even close to getting dry enough to drive a drill onto.

Following the rain and snow we had on the Sunday was the worse driving conditions on our country roads I have ever encountered. The roads are greasy and rutted no matter where I drove. Today is it partly cloudy and I don't think there is any rain in the forecast so hopefully they will dry out; the grader will come by and all will be well again.

Perhaps a little total hip replacement (thr) and total knee replacement (tkr) update should be noted. It is amazing how quickly the body recovers from surgery. Except for periodic stiffness and not always having the range of motion I would like to have, things are wonderful.

At this point, most days I can fairly run up and down stairs, walk a mile or two easily, sleep through the night without any pain, and generally feel better than I have in years. The terrible back pain I experiences prior to my hip replacement is gone, although once in a while I do have some back pain on the other side. This is annoying but livable pain; after all I have arthritis along my lower spine with many spurs to deal with. Would I advise these surgeries? Definitely!

There is lots to do at work, the Minnesota History test to complete, a news article to put together and some research to do. Time to head into work.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Four Days in the Twin Cities

It is so good to be home. Just to go for a long walk was so therapeutic. Yesterday I walked to the Concordia Lutheran Church corner, about a mile and half, then today I walked north to our land about 3/4 mile north. It felt so good to be free enough to go that far. It is so cold still. Yesterday was a winter coat and sweat shirt walk as was today. The temperature is in the 50s but the wind blocks the heat from penetrating and gloves are even necessary. Spring, oh spring, where are you?

The river really rose after the lake bottom filled. The river at the bridge south of us was below 16 and rose to about 16.5 feet and now is dropping, finally. The fields looked so good prior to the rise, now it will take another two to three weeks to see them water free.I hope we can get into the field by the third week in May.We will in on our south land in a couple of weeks maybe, but it is about 5 1/2 miles south of the river.

Ardmore finally was able to buy a grain truck that fit our budget. It will be months before he will feel as though it is capable of being used, that's the mechanic in him. When it is able to be used, I will look forward to driving it during harvest. It will take longer to fill and perhaps I can get a minute or two of reading in while hauling grain!

The workshop was wonderful! We all feel more prepared and excited about hosting the Smithsonian MOMS exhibit Between Fences. Six organizations from Minnesota will be hosting the exhibit over the next year starting in September. The Roseau County Historical Society opens the exhibit March 27, 2010.We need to really start organizing for the many upcoming events. I will be happy to have the Minnesota History Contest done and begin planning the upcoming events.

The workshop offered us some wonderful ways to present Between Fences. I am excited to have Minnesota Troubadour Charlie McGuire come to our county and present programs. We hopeful that he will do our Grand Opening but we will have to see. He is always in demand. The Minnesota State Scholar, who recently wrote a map book, will also come as a program under the Between Fences program umbrella. He will present programs to local high school geography classes as well as a public program.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

In the Twin Cities

We arrived at the Minnesota Humanities Center at about 6:30 pm, so it took us about 7 hours to make the trip. No issues, just good company and a few stops here and there, for gas and goodies and potty breaks. Britt, Linda and I are looking forward to the Between Fences workshop tomorrow. One of the women from the Smithsonian arrived later this evening. She had been at a workshop I had been to for Key Ingredients: America by Food back in 2007.

We went to Olive Garden for supper. I ordered an appetizer and then said, "This may be enough." We agreed half-heartedly and then ordered dinner. Needless to say we took almost all of our main courses back to the Humanities Center and put it in the fridge. Yup, salad, bread sticks, and the appetizer would have been plenty.

After the long trip we all need a good night's sleep. A long drive like this is tiring.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Spring has arrived!

For the first time this year it really feels like spring is arriving. It is truly warm and feels wonderful. This morning as I walked out of the house I noticed the last remnants of winter, snow in places that it tends to drift and pile high, i.e. anywhere the sun doesn't shine enough to melt the snow. Along the trees in the shelter belts, along the trees along the Roseau River, and on the sides of the ditches the snow is most prevalent. Perhaps by morning it will all be gone!

The lake bottom of the Roseau Lake was very full this morning. The water has spread out so it is within 3/4 mile of highway 16 and a mile east of 89 N. If we were to get a good rain we would be in trouble now as there is nothing for the river to do but dump more water into our "reservoir" and then it will just continue to spread, the ditches will continue to backup and the fields flood over. It will be another late spring. Just don't give us another snow storm like we had last April 26. We were seeding into June!

I have one final photo I want to post on the website from Woman's History Month. This is the photo of the Woman in History committee photo. The committee included FR - Left to right Dawn Johnson,Linda Vatnsdal, Loralee Marvin BR - Left to right Carole Wilson, Leanne Johnson, and Carolyn Eeg. These women gave their all to our events and exhibit. Could we ever say thank you enough? Never!

Publish Post

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Sunday

Today we celebrate that great day when our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ rose from the dead. His atoning sacrifice makes it possible for us to receive forgiveness for our wicked deeds. What a blessing to have this assurance.

It is a quiet day for hubby and I. With the family so far away we don't have them home for Easter. Usually I don't even cook anything special but this year I cooked on Saturday. Ham and scalloped potatoes seem to be an Easter tradition in the US and so it is in our home. I made the scalloped potatoes using fresh potatoes, onions and a can each of cream chicken and cheddar cheese soup mixed with about 1 cup of milk. Slick and easy and less fat. I believe it could be made with frozen hash browns also. We had a brown sugar glazed ham that was spiral cut. These spiral cut hams are very good and so easy to serve.

I have spent some time working on the annual report. Next week is the historical society annual meeting. We will be having a pot luck dinner, a guest speaker and music. It is always an enjoyable event. The organizing went together very fast this time. I look so forward to events like this, and am very happy when they are over.

Next Sunday Britt, Linda, and I will travel to Minneapolis -St. Paul for a workshop relating to the Smithsonian exhibit Between Fences. We will have this exhibit next March and the sooner we can organize things the better it will be.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Woman's History Month Photos

Time to place more Woman's History Month events at the Roseau Co. Historical Society
on the blog. Such fun events and wonderful volunteers!

Last but not least, the Rusty Hats!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

General Conference and daily doings

No driving to church today, we watched General Conference on the BYU channel instead. We actually watched all 4 sessions and Ardmore went to the men's session at the chapel last night. I called up a couple of friends and we went to DQ for treats. Very relaxing and good company.

Yesterday during the morning session of conference Elder Niel L. Andersen was called to the Quorum of the Twelve.Elder Andersen fills the calling of Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin who passed away last December. Now we once again have 12 apostles. It is wonderful to see how the Lord works among his people.

One of my favorite conference talks was from Elder Dieter Uchtdorf. He spoke about how we must work at being faithful, have patience, and be diligent in our relationship to our Savior. He reminded us that we must feast upon the gospel by walking in the path of discipleship by accepting God's will not ours. Elder Uchtdorf, the first apostle from outside of the US, is from German. Prior to his call as an apostle in the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints, he was a pilot for Lufthansa German Airlines.

After two days of focusing on the gospel I feel spiritually feed.

Our granddaughter, Leah has been having car trouble. Last week Michelle and Dave went to check out her car and Dave made some determinations on what was wrong. During the week they purchased the parts and headed back up yesterday and now Leah says her car is running like it did when she first purchased. The repair cost was nominal, $85, I wonder what would have taken place if she would have taken it to a repair shop. The list would have been long and costly probably. After Dave fixed the car, they celebrated with a barbecue. Wish I had been there to enjoy it with them.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Woman's History Month events

The sun is finally out after about a week or so of cloudy weather! Yesterday it was so white and gray out everything blended together, trees, sky, and snow. Today we have contrasts, the green of the evergreens stands out against the snow and the blue sky gives a wonderful background to all we see. The sun is reflecting off the snow and I can see the roof dripping the melting snow onto our bushes that are below the eaves. Yes, I feel like spring may arrive soon.

The last two events that were held in March's Woman's History Month were a Red Hat Society evening, with sister comedians, Lena and Floydette, presenting a hilarious program,

and a Quilt show, where Bonnie Nordval Olsen and Janee Provance kept us laughing with their rendition of "The Quilters."

It must be time to update the site and show some photographs of the exciting happenings at these two events.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Year One total hip replacement checkup

Yesterday was my one year checkup for my total hip replacement. Dr. Schall (Bone & Joint Clinic - Grand Forks, ND) also checked out my total knee replacement, my back (I have some arthritis deterioration in my spine), my other hip and knee. The prognosis was excellent, I do not have to see him for another year. Woo Hoo!

The probably reason for having this good report was due to following his instructions and doing many exercises. Over the past few weeks these are the changes I have become aware of:
1. less stiffness
2. more range of motion, dropping the level of the seat on my stationary bike by 1/4 inch increments when able to rotate easily.
3. walking 2 miles without pain or icing
4. no noticeable limp
5. sleeping through the night without a pillow between knees without pain
6. swimming 10-12 laps of all strokes consistently
7. more energy

I do not do the exercises recommended following surgery more than once or twice a week now and focus more on swimming, riding the stationary bike, and walking. Cross-training has helped increase my endurance and muscle tone.

If you are considering thr or tkr, follow through, it has been the best thing I have done for myself in many years. I had considerable back pain prior to my hip replacement which was relieved following my thr. In fact, I woke up from surgery without any back pain and have had very little since.

On to other areas.

Ardmore is definitely thinking spring. He has taken several trips to the Valley looking at grain trucks. Our old Ford needs to be replaced. He is thinking of a tag-axle, I want a tandem axle. He will make that decision and I will just go along with whatever he does.

We are worried about a wet spring. Last falls harvest was pretty wet and March has ended as a lion not a lamb. The beginning of April looks like it is going to be a lion also. After the beautiful weather prior to the snow on March 25 and some after that, it looks like Christmas not April. With only one month until we should be well into seeding, it looks like it isn't going too well. Farming is certainly at the mercy of the weather and northwest Minnesota is in the clutches of winter still.

The roads yesterday during the trip to and from Grand Forks left a lot to be desired. On the way, the roads were good to Thief River Falls then the predicted snow began and the roads became miserable in places, lots of drifting. On the way back the roads were not bad until after Thief River Falls. The wind had switched to the east and was drifting heavily on the east side of the road and I was driving north. At one time a semi had some problems on the west lane and the traffic from both north and south had come to a complete stop. A sheriff and a MN highway patrol car were preventing traffic from going in either direction. Finally we were given the go ahead but the driving was not fun. Roseau County had plowed though and from Strathcona on the road was pretty good until I reached highway 3 north of Badger. That was the worst road I had traveled on all day! I am home without incident though.

I did take some time to go to the mall in GF. Forgot to go to Bath and Body which was one of my main stops. Such in life, now I have to go back again or order online. I didn't even stop for lunch, just went straight home.

Today our granddaughter and husband begin the move into their new home. I am excited for them. I think they will find the home will bring them great satisfaction. I am excited to have Damen have a room of his own. That is so important. She now will be able to put him to bed and let him cry when she needs to. She can have a room for her exercise equipment, plus having a swimming pool and jacuzzi will be a benefit for them all.

The Roseau County Historical Society final Woman's History Month event went very well. I will do an update on the Red Hat and the Quilt event tomorrow.

Thought for the day: See this special spiritual thought Here