My Tuesday blog posts usually feature restaurants, but I didn’t have the opportunity to try a new one this week. I did visit the Como Park Conservatory, however, and was pleasantly surprised that it coincided with the St. Paul Winter Carnival’s Orchid Show.
The title of this blog post feels dishonest because it doesn’t feel like winter in Minnesota at all. With temperatures in the 50s over the weekend, our snow has melted and the streets are a sloppy mess. Most people seem thrilled by this turn of events, I am not. I love the snow. I love bundling up in my homemade knitwear, hearing the crunch of snow under my feet, and feeling like I have the world to myself on cold winter days. I love the fresh blanket of white that changes the world and how my dog eats it whenever he gets a chance, like the world is his personal snow cone.
A holiday season without snow feels incomplete. Neighborhoods have been transformed with lights and decorations, but the holidays are missing a primary ingredient. While I wait for Santa to bring me some magic snow to make my holiday season brighter, I will continue enjoying the new world that Christmas lights have created for our evening walks. Hopefully Santa doesn’t wait too long to make my Christmas wish come true.
Julmarknad at the American Swedish Institute
I love the holidays. One of my favorite holiday traditions is a new one, it’s visiting the American Swedish Institute for Julmarknad. The Best-Good Friend and I buy treasures made by local artisans in the craft market and then take our time exploring the Turnblad Mansion. During the holiday season, the mansion’s rooms are decorated to celebrate the holiday traditions of Iceland, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Sweden. This annual Christmas Rooms celebration is truly the “Only in Minnesota” holiday experience they strive for.
Back at the Spinning Wheel
Rain came to Minnesota this weekend. While I ran errands and thought of Marilyn Monroe’s breathy rendition of “We’re Having a Heatwave,” it seemed like the perfect weather to spend a little quality time with an old friend.
My spinning wheel has been sitting neglected for nearly a year. At some point, our old cat Virgil ate the drive band – that’s the string that makes the wheel turn. This is nothing new, in our house you have to watch anything with strings because Virgil will eat the laces right off your tennis shoes.
From that point on, the weekend was filled with fiber fantasies of wool, alpaca and angora. I see much more spinning in my near future.
Wood Lake Nature Center was one of the first nature centers built in the Twin Cities.
Dedicated in 1971, it was once a recreational lake surrounded by homes.
Approximately 72,000 visitors enjoy the 150-acre area annually.
Whenever I talk to people about how much I love living in Minneapolis, I tell them about how our fair city was built preserving green space. Because of that, this nature girl doesn’t have to go far to enjoy the outdoors.
The beautiful fall weather was perfect for a visit to Wood Lake Nature Center. This nature preserve isn’t in Minneapolis proper, but neighboring Richfield is as close to Minneapolis as a suburb can get.
One of the best things about living in the Midwest is fall. It has been a lovely one this year; the leaves are changing color, the air is getting cooler and animals are getting ready for winter. It is a beautiful time to visit the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.
The trees were beautiful, but “peak color” should be in a week or so:
It’s the time of year when I find myself pondering the question… could I run a marathon?
The Twin Cities Marathon is dubbed the Most Beautiful Urban Marathon in America and is one of the Top 10 U.S. Marathons. The 26.2 mile course runs through beautiful scenery (right past my house) and finishes at the state capitol.
This year, 8,858 runners finished the race with an average time of 4:18:34. Spectators lined up along the street to wish them well. I wondered how Asha and Chelsea felt when they passed the 14-mile mark; were they kicking ASSphalt or wishing they were drunk?
It was 35 degrees when the runners started out this year, I was still in my jammies and snuggled up in my robe. I wandered out to the race route late after spending a leisurely morning over my breakfast. When I watched the man run past barefoot holding his shoes and socks, I was once again reminded that being a spectator is more my style.
In the late 1970s, Roger Jackson, a Burnsville resident and fire equipment collector started displaying his collection with the help of his friends. A great source of entertainment for local kids, it included a short parade of equipment down Nicollet Avenue.
For more information, visit The Burnsville Fire Muster.
Who doesn’t love a fire truck? How about a hundred fire trucks? It was a lovely day for the Burnsville Fire Muster Parade!
This year had new surprises, like the Ames Horses leading the trucks down the route!
And my absolutely favorites, the Zurhah Motorcycle Corps at the end of the pack!
I grew up hearing stories from my dad about his childhood days visiting the farm. He loved talking about the family gathering to play bluegrass music but I think his favorite memory was daring his brother to pee on the electric fence. He would laugh so hard telling that story, tears would come to his eyes.