The Plant I Can Grow!

When I met Ken I had LOTS of house plants.  And some came with me to Turtle Lake.  Ken took over the houseplant tasks.  And he had great success with all the plants I brought EXCEPT the peace lily or spathiphyllum I brought.  It likes filtered light and Ken was of a more light the better philosophy.  That spath fried and died.         When Ken died, his aunts and an uncle on …

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Easter People

Years ago Ken and I joined one of his sisters for an Easter mass in the  before Easter dinner with his family.  During the mass the priest spoke of how important Easter is for Christians and told us to go forth as joyful Easter people.         This year I am thinking of Ken.  He was an altar boy, went to Catholic schools, but no longer attended church regularly.  Although not religious, Ken …

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A Gift from Ken

 I was a member of the zen center in the Twin Cities when I met Ken.  I knew of no zen centers near Turtle Lake, but I came with my Buddha,  incense, and gong; I put them on an old trunk my parents had given me when I went to college.  Ken decided he could do better than a trunk.     He took a slab and cut three holes.  He inserted and pegged the …

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Potting Soil

Few people knew which tasks Ken did and which I did.  We formed a good team, and I guess to many people the pieces were seamless.  Ken did the planting.  He made the potting soil in fall, brought in enough to fill four or five fifty gallon plastic barrels, made the soil blocks, planted, watered and transplanted. In Ken’s absence I found empty barrels – he hadn’t felt good enough to make the potting soil.  …

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One of the Surprise Christmas Presents

Today as I make bread I remember… Ken could surprise me easily.  I am often trusting and naive.  One year Ken asked me to help him move some lumber from one of the many lumber piles.  He told me he was pulling some maple for a project.  It never occurred to me the project was for me.     That year in the late fall Ken kept teasing me I had helped him move my …

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Ken the Baby Whisperer

Yesterday I got to spend some time with a gorgeous, happy baby.  I thought of Ken.  Ken, as the second of seven children, had lots of baby experience.  I, as the second of two with two younger cousins across the country, did not.  People would start to hand me babies – after all I am a woman.        And I would quickly say, “Hand that baby to Ken. I come in once they …

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March When Ken Made Me a Birthday Souffle

Ken was an excellent cook; his last job was as a private chef to one of the Pillsbury family.  When we first dated, Ken would get me a card and try to buy something or take me out for my birthday.            In March egg season is in full swing, and one year I asked him to make me a souffle.  He did and it became our habit.  Each year he …

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Our First Dinner

I met Ken dancing.  He was staying in the Twin Cities to do a pottery show.  I asked if he wanted to meet for dinner.  He said yes, when he came in for the second load of shelves and unsold pottery after the show.  I called him in Turtle Lake to arrange that.  This impressed Ken.  In those days each long distance call cost money, and no one had called him in Turtle Lake; he …

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For Valentines Day – My Love Story

People often ask how we met.  The short answer is folk dancing.  But today, on Valentines Day, it seems right to tell the whole story.  It starts with Ken.  He and a former flame decided to travel together between Christmas and New Year’s when flight rates were low.  Ken wanted to go to Banff, Canada, but Margo insisted on a warm, sunny place: Mexico.  Ken’s priorities were crafts and ruins – history.  They did research …

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