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This is the time of year when I usually get that warm feeling inside whenever I start to think about my days as a youth and the holidays. There always seems to be something special about a snowy day when I am inside with the warmth of the furnace keeping me comfortable. It is always just a little better if you know that you don’t have to venture out in the wind and snow although there was a time when I lived for just that time.

I can recall many a winter night spent outside playing in the snow and cold. I had a newspaper route for quite a few years and there were many nights that I had to deliver the paper in almost blizzard conditions. Thursday was collection day and Saturday was the day I would have to bring my collected money to the Minneapolis Star office on Main Street. You didn’t want to be short because that would be deducted from my piece of the pie. The only thing that would make me upset was when I ventured out in bad weather and a customer would not answer the door even though you knew they were home. It didn’t take me long to figure out that they were probably a little short on cash that week but they were good folks and I knew that they’d catch up the following week.

Contrary to what we say and hear about the “good old days” not everyone had a chicken in the pot or a new Buick in the garage. My folks didn’t have a lot of money when I was growing up but we were a close family that had food on the table, a warm cozy house to come home to and that was all that really mattered.

With another Thanksgiving behind us and the shopping frenzy in full swing I like to look back and remember how I spent that day growing up. We would usually spend that holiday with my mother’s side of the family and that was usually at my Aunt Ruby and Uncle Harvey’s which was right next door to ours. They had a nice TV and after the turkey feast we would go into the living room and watch the game. I can remember this one year when the Lions were playing the Packers and hall of famer Bobby Lane was the quarterback for Detroit. The Lions had a great defensive back named Dick “Nigh Train” Lane who was a hard hitting defensive back who was one of my favorite players those days. After the meal my two Uncles, Harvey and Orville would lay on the floor to watch the game all the while belching and passing gas justifying their actions by saying that their way of showing their appreciation for the great meal that we had just partaken of. I guess that memory sort of stuck with me for some reason.

Looking back just a few years I can remember a particular time when my old neighbor Bob stopped by to see me and show me some pictures he had taken of the walleyes he had caught in the Shellrock River on Thanksgiving Day. He had attended church that day and as he passed by this bridge on the way home the idea struck him that with the weather being so nice he should try doing a little fishing. After he had gone home and changed he grabbed his fishing pole and tackle box before heading back to the river. He said that it took him about an hour and a half to limit out on nice 16-18 inch fish. This goes to show that when it comes to fishing you may get that feeling that something just might work and when it does it makes you feel pretty darned good.


DNR reminds parents of ice danger to children

A mix of warm and cold weather across Minnesota has created inconsistent ice on lakes, rivers and ponds. The Department of Natural Resources is warning parents to keep an eye on their children this holiday season as they visit friends and family who live near bodies of water. 

Last winter season (November to April), three people died after falling through the ice.

“Kids are adventurous and want to go out and play while mom and dad are cooking or visiting with friends. Right now, a thin coating of ice has formed on many lakes and ponds. An inch or two of ice is not safe,” said Capt. Todd Kanieski, DNR regional enforcement manager.

He added, children should not go out on the ice without adult supervision, even when conditions improve.

“Parents should also tell their children to stay away from any frozen water bodies around the home and that no ice is ever 100 percent safe,” Kanieski said.

Thanksgiving was set aside as a time to give thanks for what we have been blessed with but we should also take time during the upcoming holiday season to remember those that will not be home with their families but are serving our country. Please remember to keep those troops in your thoughts and prayers because they are the reason that we are able to enjoy all the freedoms that we have today.

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