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The Commute


Fri, Jun 1st, 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 cardís future. But that wasnít my biggest concern.

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

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

By 4:00 a.m. Monday, Iíd hatched a plan that I was pretty sure would work. We would all get into my husbandís 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 didnít 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. Iíve 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 laterówow! Hot supper! Itís 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 Iíd 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 donít 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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Hoffman Stables

Is There a Cure for Senioritis?

Fri, Jun 1st, 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, Jun 1st, 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, Jun 1st, 2001
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Monday, May 28, 2001

Weaver Dunes Field Report Ė 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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Plan ahead to beat The Blight

Fri, Jun 1st, 2001
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Virginia CooperMonday, June 4, 2001

One of the things I enjoy most about gardening is watching the changing foliage and bloom as flowers parade through our short summer. The month of May starts with tulips and daffodils and ends with iris and ..... 
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The Game of Softball

Fri, Jun 1st, 2001
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Monday, June 4, 2001

When I was growing up, my brothers and I began our softball season as soon as the grass in our front yard was dry enough to walk on without leaving tracks in the mud. We played softball every spare moment we got throughout ..... 
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The Death Penalty, with Chinese Characteristics

Fri, Jun 1st, 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, Jun 1st, 2001
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Fri, Jun 1st, 2001
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