Steam Threshers at Rollag

Sep 05

img_0772 The Western Minnesota Steam Thresher’s get together has been on Dan’s bucket list for years. This year we planned our trip so that we would be in the area over the Labor Day weekend.

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How Fargo of You

Sep 01

screen-shot-2016-09-18-at-12-48-10-pmIt may seem like a funny title for a blog post, but it captures the city. How Fargo of You: Stories from the Northern Prairie that People Who Haven’t Been here Will Never Believe is a title to a book by Marc de Celle, who moved to Fargo and discovered the Upper Midwest way of life and people. There is Minnesota nice and the same attitude applies to North Dakota people. East coasters tend to view the Upper Midwest as flyover country, especially North Dakota.

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Freeport, Fairmont, and Fargo

Aug 30

img_0794Freeport, Minnesota is not a usual stop when traveling to Fargo. However, a Facebook friend touted the merits of the caramel rolls at Charlie’s Cafe in her post. It is just 19 miles north of St. John’s so we stopped for gas and a caramel  roll. As I was taking a photo of Dan in front of Charlie’s, a man came along and put his arm around Dan and asked if we wanted a photo together. Fritz turned out to be a native of Freeport. We thoroughly enjoyed our small town experience.

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St. John’s Abbey Rest

Aug 29

It is always a treat to stay at St. John’s Abbey Guesthouse. It is a nice halfway point between the Twin Cities and Fargo, North Dakota. Dan graduated from St. John’s University in 1958. We sang afternoon prayers and psalms with the monk. We took our evening meal with the students in their Refectory. It was fun people watching. St. John’s University has a diverse student population which was evident in the dining hall.

imageWe met Fr. Eric Hollas, OSB, for breakfast the next morning. We first met him in 1998 when he taught an Elderhostel class in a program sponsored by St. John’s. We both follow his blog, The Monk’s Chronicle. He has been blogging weekly for four years.  Fr. Eric is the Deputy to President in the Institutional Advancement Office.

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Heading North

Aug 28

imageOur first stop was in Ramsey, MN to see another Boyle cousin, Mickey and her husband, Wayne Adams. We enjoyed dinner and an overnight stay. We went to mass with them on Sunday and enjoyed brunch at the Mad Hatter in Anoka, MN.


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Family History in Person

Aug 24

imageDan made arrangements to meet with his two first cousins, one generation removed. Jerry Sittaur, was an Army nurse cadet during World War II and then had a long career with a VA hospital. Mary Ellen Kennedy, taught school for many years before retiring. I scanned family photos off Mary Ellen’s wall.

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Going Home Again

Aug 21

Going Home Again

It’s been two years since we visited Minnesota and North Dakota. The 2014 trip was for a funeral so we only stayed a few days. This time we are taking three weeks to see our families and friends. It is always nice to talk “Minnesotian” again. We tried an AirBNB listing having an entire house or in our case, half of the duplex. It was a perfect spot from a week-long stay in St. Paul. The Merriam Park neighborhood was new for me so it’s fun to explore and find a great restaurant nearby, The Neighborhood Café as well as the Cahoot’s Coffee Bar. I can’t forget O’Gara’s Bar and Grill that stood on the corner since 1941.

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