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INDEPENDENTLY SPEAKING

Writer, Public Speaker, Writing Instructor

 

September 18, 2020

I now have nine jars of very thick, very sweet grape juice.

I’ve always kind of believed the old, “when life gives you lemons make lemonade,” thing. But I don’t know what the hell to do with this stuff.

I was shooting for grape jelly. Sadly, as is often the case when I s...

September 11, 2020

I’ve never had a cool nickname.

I’m not saying I’ve never had a nickname. As far as I know, I haven’t, and at this point in my life, if there’s a nickname out there I’ve been unaware of for the last half century, I’m guessing I don’t want to know.

Seriously. If my friend...

September 4, 2020

I can stop wishing for a tornado.

We painted our farm buildings.

Let me explain. 

For a hundred years or so, this was a real farm, with half a dozen different barns and buildings scattered around the grounds, most of which I built or helped build. Over time, they all got...

August 28, 2020

“I love this place,” I said. “It’s just so…science-y.”

I was with Granddaughter One, killing time on a weekend and trying to be responsible about the whole physical distancing thing, so we were walking around the gardens and grounds of the West Central Research and Outr...

August 21, 2020

I’m perched on a worn wooden deck, high above a northern Minnesota lake. A gaggle of grandchildren are splashing in crystal clear water that I think is way too cold, but the kids don’t seem to mind. I’ve spent most of my life seeing cold and wet as something to be avoi...

August 7, 2020

We got a nice rain in August.

I wrote that sentence and then wondered to myself how many of the people who read this column will understand what it means. There are now only about 1.3 million farmers in the country. Even if you include every single gardener, not many pe...

July 31, 2020

Well, I’m sleeping alone.

I just had knee replacement surgery and the first night home, it took quite a while to get me tucked in.  Two pillows under my legs so they were higher than my heart, middle of the night medication close at hand, sufficient blankets - I was snu...

July 24, 2020

I’m doing household chores, baby. Yeah…me!

There was rain forecast, I was outside, and I noticed a stapler on our patio table. You know what I did?

I carried it inside.

Let me explain. I got a new knee last week and I’m currently on seven - count ‘em - seven different med...

July 17, 2020

A few years ago, we bought six raspberry plants and stuck them in the ground along the orchard fence.  Now we have a raspberry patch 50 feet long and 6 feet wide, and growing every year. Yesterday I picked two pints of raspberries, it looks like tomorrow I can pick two...

July 10, 2020

I have a great new career opportunity.

Seriously. I’m pretty sure I have a knack for wedding planning.

In my lifetime, I’ve played a role in three weddings. My own wedding was great, but that was a few decades ago and I recognize times change. I didn’t have much to do wi...

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September 18, 2020

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August 28, 2020

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34596 690th Ave Ortonville MN United States 56278

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