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The Commute


Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Monday, May 21, 2001

Commuting any distance to work in Minnesota is an "iffy" proposition. Add to that being the parent of small children, and you are dancing on the edge of a sharp knife daily.

There are any number of variables each day that could throw you into a tail-spin. It seems to me these potential disasters fall under three general categories: illness, weather, mechanical malfunction.

My car, an eight-year-old front wheel drive, made it through all combinations of weather this past winter, only to be side-lined in March by a leaky oil gasket. That leak caused the engine to "freeze up." A new engine was in my and my Visa cards future. But that wasnt my biggest concern.

The "permanent stall" happened on a Saturday, and I spent the next 48 hours worrying aboutMonday Morning. It wasnt that we had no car. My husbands car was functioning fine. His car, which I secretly refer to as "The Beast", has lots of miles, lots of "character, but it runs.

Monday Morning. Four people going four different places. One car.

By 4:00 a.m. Monday, Id hatched a plan that I was pretty sure would work. We would all get into my husbands car at 7:15 with our respective "gear" for the day: heavy winter-wear for my husband who will most likely be working outside; the signed "Friday Folder", overdue library book and pet ladybug (show and tell) for my daughter; a pack of one hundred forty four diapers for my son; and the folder of freshman composition papers I didnt finish grading.

Like many famous athletes, most mothers I know use "visualization" in their drive toward greatness. I visualized myself Monday morning making use of my favorite household gadget, my crockpot. Ive collected recipes, all of them remarkably similar. You throw in some type of protein, a pasta, at least one can of soup (undiluted), hit the switch, and eight hours laterwow! Hot supper! Its the closest I ever come to "magic" in the kitchen.

So the next morning, things went pretty much as planned. As I bent to hit the switch on the crockpot on my way out the door, I felt a funny pain in my chest. I was pretty sure it was indigestion from all the coffee Id had, but I stopped by the medicine cabinet and popped a couple of aspirin before leaving, just in case it was my heart. (And my mom thinks I dont take care of my health!)

My husband was dropped off at work 30 seconds early. Child One was deposited cheerfully at kindergarten, .....
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Is There a Cure for Senioritis?

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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By Chris GuttormsonIt's a disease that has plagued seniors for years. It shows no mercy and eats away at the concentration of all who are unfortunate enough to succumb to it's evil. You can't run. You can't hide! Look out, it's SENIORITIS!!!!!! Even ..... 
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Genetic Genie

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Monday, May 14, 2001

Nature provides for genetic exchanges through natural selection. Humans have long manipulated genetic inheritance through crossbreeding of plants and animals. But, in recent years, scientists have learned how to manipulate ..... 
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"Come Hell or High Water"

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Monday, May 28, 2001

Weaver Dunes Field Report Mid Spring 2001

Peepers and Chorus Frogs now sing in earnest from wetlands throughout Fillmore, Houston, Winona, and Wabasha Counties. The incredible din of these tiny inch long fr ..... 
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Reader Mailbag

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Virginia CooperMonday, May 28, 2001

This week I'd like to introduce a new feature for Local Gardener, Reader Mailbag, a chance for readers to ask questions about their own gardens, then I'll try my best to give a good answer. Or at least a fun ..... 
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Take This Until It Hurts

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Monday, May 21, 2001

I dont know why I do this to myself. My birthday is in the spring and so is my semi-annual run-in with my dentist. I could simply make the dental appointment later in the year. That way I would be spared the double-whammy ..... 
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The Death Penalty, with Chinese Characteristics

Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Monday, May 28, 2001

The European Parliament, considers capital punishment to be both barbaric and inhumane, regardless of the means by which the death penalty is carried out. They routinely mention the United States in the same breath as Chin ..... 
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Fri, May 25th, 2001
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Fri, May 25th, 2001
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