Married forever (or 60 years!)

How flattered would you be if someone drove 200 miles just to meet you on a Friday afternoon? Would you fall in love and drive to Duluth on Monday morning to buy a marriage license? And would you marry that man just four days after your high school graduation? This, my friends, is the love…

More gratitude – even and especially during the tough times

Jill Pertler “Slices of Life” Life can seem complicated sometimes. Because it is. There are responsibilities and deadlines. Work is demanding. Home life is demanding. There are never enough hours in the day – or the night for that matter. Sleep deprivation is real. The threat of COVID is real. For more than a year,…

Finding gratitude – more and again

Jill Pertler “Slices of Life” In some ways, we are all hurting. We are all grieving. Regular readers of this column know that I’m experiencing grief as a result of the sudden and unexpected passing of my husband, but grief doesn’t have to involve someone dying and leaving this earth. Grief can simply involve a…

A bit of advice to graduates … and everyone else, too

Jean Matua “From the Heart” As the Class of 2021 ventures out to find their way in the world, it seems appropriate and timely to share with them some advice. We have all learned lessons this past year and a half, I hope, and we’re all open to new wisdom. So please indulge me here…

Summer fun!

Summer is almost here, and I love it! Beautiful, warm weather. School is out so kids can relax and be kids again for about 90 days. I have three children of my own, so I know the challenges of keeping young ones occupied. I like to write a column at this time of year to…

Sweet casual conversations

By Sandy Holthaus Last Saturday, I went to the All-City Garage Sale. The weather was gorgeous! It was a perfect day. It was as if everyone wanted to be outside in the sunshine enjoying our “new normal.” All these phrases that we never spoke of just over a year ago. I have to say I…

Getting ready to plant your gardens

By Karen Johnson,  U of M Extension Have you put much thought into your garden yet this year? Now is a great time to take a soil sample, consider plant placement within the garden, and to get started planting some of the cool-season germinating vegetables. Do you know what the nutrient levels are in your…

Childhood friendship

I’m going up north this week to the home of my mom and dad in Schroeder. Even though I moved from there 37 years ago, it still feels like I belong there. I’m going to visit one of my best friends since Kindergarten. She was also the Valedictorian of my graduating class. Thirteen years of…

Finding a new me

By Jill Pertler Yesterday I changed a light bulb. It was the overhead one at the entrance to our basement stairs. I had to use a stepping stool in order to reach it. That light bulb has burned out many times in the 20 years since I’ve lived in my house, but this was the…

The real guilt of grief

By Jill Pertler If grief itself weren’t bad enough, she often is accompanied by another formidable beast. I’ve encountered him lately, and his name is guilt. Before I go any further, please suppress your instinct to tell me I shouldn’t feel any guilt because I loved fully, madly, and deeply, and went above and beyond…