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A View From The Woods


By Loni Kemp

Fri, Feb 1st, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

Seasonal Surrender

Now is the time of hunkering down. I’m not leaving home, not reaching out, not outward-focused. These precious deep winter weeks are giving me permission to slow down, look inward and rest.

I rise on a winter-storm-warning morning, elated to know today I have to stay off the roads and out of the woods. I light a fire, marveling at the success of my newly discovered method of starting a fire. Big logs on the bottom, medium sticks laid crosswise, topped with kindling, a shred of birchbark, and a crispy pinecone. I light the birchbark, the pine cone flares up, the kindling starts to burn, and—here’s the thing I never knew before—the fire naturally drops down as it catches. No more tending and laying on sticks and logs, hoping not to put the little fire out. The fire finds its own way down to the big wood.

Reflecting on new discoveries and perfecting life habits is a satisfaction of winter.

Some people hate January. I, too, sometimes get a sinking sensation on New Year’s Day, putting away the holiday decorations while noting that there is almost nothing on the new calendar. No parties, no concerts, long nights, little to look forward to in a drab, brown and white world. Then I realize I’m ready for this season. It is the time to slow down.

Now the whole day, a doubly precious Sunday with no work expectations, spreads before me in endless quiet possibilities. I eat my granola and yogurt, listening to the taps of freezing rain on the window, and do the crossword puzzles from yesterday’s Star Tribune.

I can read all morning if I want to, or catch the Sunday political shows on TV. I may wander over to the piano and pick up the Bach Two Part Inventions I’ve been working on. Every note must be fingered perfectly, or else Bach’s devilish melodies fall off the musical cliff when I run out of fingers. While practicing, my brain may drop into the zone of total absorption, or wander away in trite musings. Either way is fine.

This could be a great day to inventory and order my spring seeds. Maybe I’ll cook green pea soup from summer’s frozen harvest, or blend up a batch of hummus. I’ve got some mending to do, many unseen movies recorded, and a letter to write. Best of all might be a little nap, or a long corpse pose after doing yoga, which amounts to the same thing.

Deep winter is the time for these personally rewardi .....
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Season opens for “Over the Back Fence” in Lanesboro

Fri, Feb 1st, 2013
Posted in Lanesboro Arts & Culture

Another great year is planned for the “Over the Back Fence” Community Variety Show, held monthly at the St. Mane Theatre in Lanesboro, Minnesota. The 2013 season is packed full of fun themes, featuring our talented local cast and top-notch guest ..... 
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Biologists from Taiwan and Germany to speak at Owl Festival

Fri, Jan 25th, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

If you’d like to get a taste of foreign culture along with inspirational stories of people helping owls, register now to attend the 11th Annual International Festival of Owls banquet on Saturday, March 2 in Houston, MN. The 2013 World Owl Hall of ..... 
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Lanesboro Arts Center exhibit “Traditions in Transition: The Art of Redefined” runs Feb. 9 through March

Fri, Jan 25th, 2013
Posted in Lanesboro Arts & Culture

Lanesboro Arts Center opens the 2013 Exhibition Gallery season with an exhibit showcasing work by nationally-acclaimed, award-winning Lanesboro jewelers Liz Bucheit and Michael Seiler. “Traditions in Transition: The Art of Jewelry Redefined” ope ..... 
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Making a difference in Harmony and its surrounding area

By Kevin Blanchard

Fri, Jan 18th, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

The Harmony Area Community Foundation (HACF) was recently established by local citizens to enhance and sustain the quality of life for residents of the greater Harmony area. HACF is organized as a fund underneath the Southern Minnesota Initiative F ..... 
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Luther College to host fourth Oneota Film Festival Jan. 18-20

Fri, Jan 11th, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

DECORAH, Iowa – The fourth annual Oneota Film Festival has announced that it will present 10-15 sets of films including international award winners, as well as panel discussions with filmmakers, specialists and experts. The fourth annual event, whi ..... 
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Preston’s Candlelight Ski and Chili Cook-off

Fri, Jan 11th, 2013
Posted in Preston Arts & Culture

Let it snow - just in time for Preston’s annual Candlelight Ski and Chili Cook-Off event! Bundle up and come on down to the Trailhead Inn office this Saturday evening, January 19 to ski on the trail and to test-taste some wonderful chili contest e ..... 
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Ice ice baby!

Fri, Jan 11th, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

Yes, its winter. Yes, it’s cold. But don’t let that stop you from getting out and having some fun! Several towns in the area have ice skating rinks for you and your family to get outside this winter season and not only have a good time as a fam ..... 
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After holiday pointsettia care

By Monica Ortner

Fri, Jan 4th, 2013
Posted in All Arts & Culture

Monica Ortner Fillmore County Master Gardener Intern The holidays are now over and the new year has begun. What to do with the pretty poinsettias you received for the holidays? I like to keep them as long as I can. They look so pretty in this win ..... 
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