Ms. Simplicity: How to organize after the death of a parent

When you lose someone through death, you may be tasked to sort through their possessions.Remember that grief is different for everyone. You may be able to go through everything in a weekend and come up with a few items to keep. Your sister may not be able to make any decisions and will keep everything for five years. Last week the theme of conversations that came up with was organizing after the death of a parent. Focus on the things that bring you the joy and be OK with getting rid of the rest. If you are the kind of person where everything brings you joy, you may need reevaluate and come up with a scale of joy and keep only the top two percent.Don’t let the stuff you keep overtake your space.I have seen entire rooms and basements in houses filled to the ceiling of a deceased parents’ belongings. And your brother may not show up at all.Here are a few things to keep in mind when throughout the process.Keep only what brings you joy.Chances are there are those few items that you truly love and the rest you are indifferent about. The added benefit is that you may hear some lovely stories about an item that you can then cherish.Don’t take anything personally.When your children do not want Grandma’s living room furniture, don’t make them feel bad. Just accept that they don’t want the items. Often, we get stuck in getting rid of anything because of a sense of overwhelming responsibility. Try to go through items as quickly as the grief and time allows.Ask — don’t assume — what others will want to keep.We all have different memories attached to things. Sometimes an expert is needed to help with this process.A professional organizer can help without the emotions attached and can bring clarity. Grief and clutter often go hand-in-hand. If you think your daughter may want Grandma’s dishes, ask. And I can honestly say it is through my work with clients or conversations I have. They just cannot move past getting rid of anything so they have sacrificed their home for this makeshift homage to their departed family member.Piles of dusty books and records is not a good way to honor the person. Chances are the items will stay in the unit much longer than anticipated. Perhaps you don’t want to hurt the person who has died. You will get instant answers and can keep moving forward in the purging process. I give you permission to donate the items.Don’t rent storage to house the items.When a parent leaves a full house behind, it may seem easier to move everything into a storage unit until you have time to process everything. I am certain that they do not want you to keep things that you do not find useful. This is not a fun procedure, but one done with love can be successful. Now go back to the above point that we are not our possessions. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger is a professional organizer based out of Fargo and author of “Organizing in Simplicity: Kitchens.” Email her at Be proactive. We all suffer from grief at some point in our lives. A great way to do this is to take pictures of the items as you go through them and send text messages. Store what you have room for in a respectable way within the limits of your space.Don’t keep items because you feel guilty.Remember the possession is not the person. If you are looking for an organizer in your community visit the website for a listing.And remember, we are not our possessions.Ms. Melissa Schmalenberger, Ms Simplicity columnistLast week I had two conversations with people who were wondering where I come up with my topics each week. We all deal with it in different ways. Repeat after me, we are not our possessions.If you have aging parents, you might want to start the process of reducing now.

Looking Back: Feb. 9, 2017

12, 1987(Headline) Turtle race director sought: No experience required(Photo) Pequot Lakes youngsters will travel to the St. 40 years ago, Feb. 8, 2007(Headline) Forbes and Germaine Martinson are 2006 Pequot Lakes Citizens of the Year(Headline) Pequot adds wrestling to youth sports program-Compiled by Theresa Bourke, Staff Writer Minnesota International Pageant.10 years ago, Feb. 30 years ago, Feb. 13, 1997Pequot Lakes resident John Mikesh spent more than 24 hours alone in the woods Feb. 5 after breaking his leg while cross country skiing near Pine River.Susan Cameron has been named Mrs. 13 to perform in a full length concert at the Regional Music Educators’ Convention.(Headline) Dodo Fraser: Woman who helped put Crosslake in the news will retire20 years ago, Feb. Paul Radisson Feb. Crow Wing County 1997 and will represent the community at the 1997 Mrs. 10, 1977(Headline) Pine disease could be spreading to MinnesotaWCCO Radio’s Prep Parade Program named Joe Zwack, of Pequot Lakes High School, to the All-State Basketball Team of the Week.

PLHS graduate wins newspaper contest awards

Cloud State University’s newspaper: first place, local breaking news coverage; second place, best use of multimedia; third place, human interest story; and third place, best use of multimedia. Cloud State University.Sarah Rudlang, Pine River, a Pequot Lakes High School graduate, received four Minnesota Newspaper Association Better Newspaper Contest awards Jan. Rudlang won the following awards for her work for the University Chronicle, St. 26 at the association’s annual convention in Bloomington. Sarah Rudlang, Pine River, a Pequot Lakes High School graduate, shows the Minnesota Newspaper Association Better Newspaper Contest awards she won as a writer for the University Chronicle at St.
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Chamber welcomes business

From left are Bruce Meade, Edward Jones; Sherry Gibbons, SERVPRO; Gunderson; Aundra Erickson, Country Financial; and Rachel Granfors, Select Therapy in Crosslake.Submitted PhotoMind’s Eye Graphic Design designs promotional materials, print publications, banners, signs and more. From left are Bruce Meade, Edward Jones; Sherry Gibbons, SERVPRO; Gunderson; Aundra Erickson, Country Financial; and Rachel Granfors, Select Therapy in Crosslake. Here, owner Deb Gunderson is presented her first dollar of clear profit during a Brainerd Lakes Chamber Ambassador welcome visit. Mind’s Eye has been serving for 28 years from Backus. Mind's Eye Graphic Design designs promotional materials, print publications, banners, signs and more. Mind's Eye has been serving for 28 years from Backus. Here, owner Deb Gunderson is presented her first dollar of clear profit during a Brainerd Lakes Chamber Ambassador welcome visit.
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The Last Windrow: Super Bowl 51 is in the books

We’ll get back to the business of making our way through the winter until the spring zephyrs brush our chapped cheeks and the water trickles off our roof.The Super Bowl will be yet another memory of which most of us won’t remember one week later who won.It is as it should be.(Since I wrote this column, the Patriots pulled it out in overtime. The game will have been debated at the local coffee houses. Her performance had nothing to do with football, but we watched it nevertheless. All the betting will have been completed, even if authorities keep telling us that betting is illegal. It used to be a quiet time of year, a time in the winter when one could relax a bit from the toil of the farm, awaiting the gentle zephyrs of springtime. Wouldn’t it be great if the Vikes actually made it there? By the time this column hits the press we will all know who won Super Bowl 51. There were no doubt odd lizards and other critters and humans vying for our attention.Next year the Super Bowl will happen in the Twin Cities. One of two teams that somehow made it through the football season with fewer injuries than any other team will be the winner.All will be quiet again up here in the northwoods and out on the prairie. Okay? The Budweiser horses may have been retired. Call me a defeatist if you must, but I’ve got purple scars all over my body.I still find a bit of excitement in this true American sporting event. This year no team west of the Appalachians played, but it didn’t really matter. Totally off our regular diets, but Super Bowls do give you an excuse for excess.Afterall, a Super Bowl IS pure excess.Those businesses who purchased million dollar advertising spots will be conducting marketing meetings this week, discussing whether the cost of the ads added up to anything in the cash register. C’mon now, you really did watch.And, if for no other reason, my wife made a delicious batch of barbecue meatballs, cooked up a wonderful cheese dip and bought me a jug of pickled herring. I’ve pretty much given up much hope of ever receiving a Viking Super Bowl champion sweatshirt for Christmas.But, this week will see the chatter die down. You have to admit it takes guts to do what she does. I’ve long since decided that the Vikings will never, in my lifetime, achieve the golden ring. Bets will have been paid off. Some would say that since a zillion dollars has been spent on the new stadium, our Vikings will no doubt put forth the extra effort to get to the Super Bowl in 2018.But, no, as stated above, I think I’m destined never to see a Viking wearing the Super Bowl ring. No parties, no wide screen TVs, no million dollar ads. We will settle again into the doldrums of late winter, trying to figure out our taxes.I must admit that I can get caught up in the Super Bowl hype. At least it wasn’t over the Vikes!)See you next time. I still watched.I wanted to see if Lady Gaga made it as she dangled herself down from the roof of the stadium. I was born before the time of the first Super Bowl.

Police Blotter – Feb. 10, 2017

30 at 5:20 p.m. Joseph's Medical Center emergency room by North Ambulance with serious injuries. 31 at 4:19 p.m. of a personal injury snowmobile crash near Moonlite Bay in Crosslake. of a property damage crash, where a garbage truck struck two parked cars, on North Lakeview Drive.CRIMINAL SEXUAL CONDUCT: Report on Feb. Crow Wing County Sheriff's Department – CRASHES: Report on Feb. IllustrationCrow Wing County Sheriff’s DepartmentCRASHES: Report on Feb. 30 at 8:36 a.m. Report on Jan. of criminal sexual conduct on County Road 11.Nisswa Police DepartmentFIRE: Report on Feb. 30 at 4:35 p.m. of a fire on Nokomis Avenue.TRAFFIC ARREST: Report on Jan. 3 at 10:17 a.m. Subject was unconscious and transported to Essentia Health-St. 5 at 8:12 p.m. Subject was unconscious and transported to Essentia Health-St. of a deer/vehicle crash on County Road 1 in Emily.Report on Jan. of a male arrested counterfeit, fifth-degree drug possession and possession of hypodermic needle on Veterans Street in Jenkins.CRASH: Report on Feb. Joseph’s Medical Center emergency room by North Ambulance with serious injuries. of a personal injury snowmobile crash near Moonlite Bay in Crosslake. 2 at 1:05 p.m. 3 at 1:31 p.m. of a driver arrested for DWI on County Road 3 in Merrifield.FIRE: Report on Feb. of a driver arrested for third-degree DWI on State Highway 371 and County Road 77.Cass County Sheriff’s DepartmentCRASH: Report on Feb. 1 at 1:17 p.m. of a personal injury crash on State Highway 371 in Hackensack. of a property damage crash on County Road 16 and Timber Lane in Pequot Lakes.DWI: Report on Feb. 3 at 3:08 p.m. of a property damage crash on North Oak Street.THEFTS: Report on Jan. 3 at 11:33 p.m. 2 at 11:45 a.m. 4 at 6:49 p.m. 4 at 12:43 a.m. The snowmobiler was found on the ice about 25 feet from his crashed snowmobile. of a theft and damage to property on Olson Street.Report on Feb. 4 at 6:49 p.m. of a theft from a locker room on Olson Street.TRAFFIC ARREST: Report on Feb. The snowmobiler was found on the ice about 25 feet from his crashed snowmobile. of a passenger arrested for second-degree drug sales and third-degree possession on State Highway 371 and Butler Street.Breezy Point Police DepartmentCRASH: Report on Jan. of smoke coming from a boiler in a house on Shelstad Lane in Merrifield.Pequot Lakes Police DepartmentCOUNTERFEIT: Report on Feb. 31 at 3:12 p.m.

Outdoor store opens in Crosslake – Ace Hardware owners open laundromat

Theresa Bourke/Echo Journal
Why not let them help themselves so they don’t have to wait for me?”Ultimately, Hultman plans to hire five employees, including high school aged students looking for retail experience.—   —   —   —   —Crosslake Laundromat opensDan and Betty Soller, familiar to Crosslake as the owners of the Ace Hardware store, opened Crosslake Laundromat next to their store.Betty said large items such as comforters and rugs were a deciding factor in opening the laundromat, as well as questions by visitors to the area.”I’ve had to travel a distance to do my bigger stuff than will fit in my personal machine,” Betty said. We have the gas stations and a hardware store, but for any of the real sporting goods stuff we would tell them Reeds, Gander Mountain, Fleet Farm … “Then with the campers every summer, someone comes in the door almost every other day asking where the nearest laundromat is. Services at Hultman’s shop range from gear for hunting, fishing, snowshoeing, camping and guide services, to eventual rental services. Using the resulting five notebooks of notes, he built BTR Outdoors in Crosslake to meet those needs. Being close to the campground and being in the center, that’s just one of those things the town needs.”The doors opened Dec. Jeremy Hultman used to have to send people out of town for their outdoors needs, but after opening BTR Outdoors, he provides many of the things that outdoors customers want.In 10 years of managing the bait and tackle sections at two Crosslake stores, Jeremy Hultman kept notes on customers’ wants, needs and concerns. “That’s how I built the building blocks for this whole thing,” Hultman said. “We didn’t have a true sporting goods store. 14, giving Hultman the chance to make his face known ahead of the spring fishing opener, for which he already has a plan.”The biggest thing is, Memorial through Labor Day I open at 4 in the morning, two hours before anything in town opens up,” Hultman said. BTR stands for Bait, Tackle, Rental, and that’s what he specializes in.The property for the shop was purchased just over a year ago, and the building was opened to the public Jan. “Fishing opener, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, I’m staying open 24 hours.”In addition to selling and eventually renting outdoors gear, Hultman’s business will do boat detailing (with RVs and automobiles welcome as well), making his business a one-stop shop. Hours are 7 a.m.-7 p.m. “People know what they want, they know how much they want. “Ten years of customer research.”The store opened between Dairy Queen and Wind, Water and Wheels in Crosslake. 30, and Betty said it was already tumbling dry several loads of laundry before the end of the night. He has a heated garage for workshops and seminars for local fishing guides.One aspect Hultman is proud of is a rare, self-service friendly bait shop.”I have faith in humanity,” Hultman said. The goal was to bring all the needs of Crosslake visitors inside the borders of the town.”We have so many bodies of water, trails, forests and woods,” Hultman said. The facility has 15 dryers and 11 washers with an optional laundry service for those who contact the owners.A manager has been hired to provide assistance, and the owners are also available at the hardware store. every day, with times to change during summer. We’d send them 40 miles away and have them come 40 miles back.”The name says it all.

Echo Journal wins four MNA awards

In the category for weekly newspapers with a circulation of 2,501-5,000: Dan Determan, staff writer, won first place for an arts and entertainment story; Travis Grimler won second place for a portrait and personality photo; and Grimler placed third with a business story.Among all weekly newspapers in the state, the Echo Journal placed first with its magazine, Love of the Lakes.Another area Forum Communications newspaper, the Brainerd Dispatch, received the following awards among all daily newspapers in the state:Steve Kohls, first place for portrait and personality photo and second place for press photographer’s portfolio; Kelly Humphrey, first and second places for feature photos; and Renee Richardson and Zach Kayser, third in a category that targeted the business of healthcare.Richardson won second place in the Freedom of Information Award category among all newspapers in the state.Among daily newspapers in the state with a circulation of 10,000 or more: Lisa Henry won second place for use of color in advertising and third place for best advertisement; and the Dispatch staff placed third in both general reporting and advertising excellence. 26 at the association’s annual convention in Bloomington. 26 in Bloomington.Pineandlakes Echo Journal staff members received Minnesota Newspaper Association Better Newspaper Contest awards Jan. Echo Journal and Brainerd Dispatch staff show the awards won at the Minnesota Newspaper Association convention Jan.
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Reminders: Feb. 9, 2017

11, at the Nisswa American Legion.A spaghetti dinner will be served from 5-7:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11. for $10 (cash only). Cost is $9 for adults and free for kids ages 6 and under. 11, at the Pequot Lakes Library.Bartella benefit in NisswaA benefit for Shelley Bartella, who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer, will take place from 4-9 p.m. 11, at Pine River-Backus School with workshop sessions, keynote speaker, vendors, exhibitors, lunch, door prizes, school-aged children’s programming and more. Back to BasicsWith a focus on sustainability, Back to Basics will run from 8 a.m. A donation account for Bartella is set up at US Bank.Church dinnerPine River United Methodist Church will host a Valentine’s ham dinner from 4:30-7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. Author at PL LibraryTwin Cities author Lisa Sellman will sign copies of her books, “The Legend of the Wolves of Gunflint Lake” and “The First Dream Catcher,” as well as have dream catcher kits at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. Saturday, Feb. There will be silent auctions and raffles.

Girls hockey: Lightning rout Storm

Sydney Teitz and Caitie Gutzman each tallied a goal and two assists.The remaining goals were scored by JJ Huber and Mandi Soderholm, while senior co-captain Sam Gutzman record two assists.Netminder Chaia Tulenchik recorded eight saves.The Lightning will travel to Alexandria to face Cardinals on Tuesday, Feb. We want to focus on the little hockey plays that don’t show up on the scoreboard, but when you add them up over a game, they tend to translate into a win.” “They are a team that does the little things right … 14.”Alex has gone to state in nine of the last 11 years for a reason,” Stockler said. “We were doing the things that we wanted to do. 9. 9.Freshman Lou Kosloski scored a natural hat trick as the Northern Lakes Lightning girls hockey team bested the Morris-Benson Storm 7-0 in the opening round of the Section 6A tournament Thursday, Feb. Over the next two practice days, we are going to focus on the nitty and the gritty – winning the battles, getting pucks out when we need to, using the glass, back-checking. With their short bench, we knew if we did that again in the second period, the floodgates might open, and they did.”Kosloski led the team in scoring, scoring the only two goals of the first period and the first goal of the second. “We came out in the first period and I thought we played very well, getting pucks to the net,” coach John Stockler said. Dan Determan/Echo Journal
Lightning freshman Lou Kosloski skates past the Storm defense Thursday, Feb.