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At Home in the Woods


Fri, Sep 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

It's a relief that 9/11 has come and gone with no additional terrorist attacks. But, it seems that there is still a lot to worry about--impending war with Iraq, more attacks, West Nile and other exotic viruses, the lagging economy and climate change.

When I am feeling anxious, the Big Woods comforts me, so it was a pleasure, on 9/11/02 to talk about the woods at the semi-annual Presbyterian Women's guest evening in Canton. I will always remember where I was during the sad events of 9/11/01, but now I will also remember where I was on the same date this year. This year's memories don't cancel the bad memories of last year, but they take some of the sting out of them.

I received the invitation to speak because the women were familiar with my Big Woods writings in this column. They had also heard about my forthcoming book "At Home in the Big Woods" and asked me to read excerpts from it. It was not without some anxiety, however, that I prepared for my talk. I am not accustomed to speaking in public and I knew I would be speaking to some people who know the Big Woods and its history better than I do. I had little to fear, though. The alert and smiling expressions in the audience put me at ease.

I talked about how my husband and I discovered the woods in 1972, fell in love with it and immediately decided to buy two woodlots from Otto and Walter Schultz. I read excerpts from essays about the old Simley place, eccentric Big Woods characters and the birds I saw from my back porch one fall when a back injury prevented me from taking my usual walks.

My audience seemed most interested in the people of the woods, but also showed interest in the birds. Several people told their own Big Woods stories.

One woman said that the Big Woods used to be "swarming with timber rattlers" and her mother, a small woman, would never let her children swing on their tire swing without first running a big stick through the perimeter of the tire to check for snakes.

Another person said she had attended the Amherst school and that they used to have school picnics by Simley Springs, which is now part of the Hvoslef Wildlife Management Area. Someone commented on how Lawrence Simley always used to have something nice to say when he came across people picnicking on his land.

One woman, who used to live in the Big Woods, talked about visi .....
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Prairie Notes-For Richer and Poorer

Fri, Sep 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Its been raining wedding invitations lately at our house. Thered been a drought for a few yearsjust long enough for this guest to gain a few years in age, if not in wisdom. Im not much on ceremony, but weddings interest me. Like many people, Ive ..... 
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Does It Matter?

Fri, Sep 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

I dont normally write about national politics, but I have been troubled by recent events in Washington, in particular the move by the Bush Administration to seek Congressional approval for the President to take military action against Iraq. & ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Sep 13th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

This is our invitation for us cousins that I talked about last week, up to my sister Dolly's in Goodhue. Chocolate is a vegetable!

Chocolate is derived from cocoa beans. Beans = vegetables. Sugar is derived from either sugar cane or sugar ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Sep 6th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Annabelle Kvam Monday, September 9, 2002

You wont believe me, but I was gone again this week, two days in a row. Wednesday our cousins (ladies only) met up at sister Dollys in Goodhue. There was nine of us plus Dollys two girls. We chatted ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Aug 30th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Annabelle Kvam Monday, September 2, 2002

A tribute to teachers

God gave to you
the rarest gift
an understanding heart.
A gentle kindly manner
your wisdom to impart.
Oh, some men build
with steel and iron
to pave ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Aug 23rd, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Annabelle Kvam Monday, August 26, 2002

Well, Im still alive, what a nice wedding we had last Saturday the 17th. My grandson was married at 4:00 p.m. and it was so pretty. I was there and was thinking, lady your getting old, this groom was my ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Aug 16th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Annabelle Kvam Monday, August 19, 2002

What a fun day, dont plan anything, just do what you want to. My friend Betty came the other day. She called me in the morning and said she was coming over at 1:00 p.m. When she got to my house we just d ..... 
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Notes from a Country Kitchen

Fri, Aug 9th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Annabelle Kvam Monday, August 12, 2002

Do you have days when you wonder what and why you get up in the morning? Well Ill tell you why I wonder.
The Joys of Aging

I have become quite a frivolous old gal. Im seeing five gentlemen ev ..... 
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