Now hitch up the dog...
Illustration © Virginia McCorkell; photo by Sarah Steinhauer
Levi Steinhauer enjoys his first winter -- riding on his sled.
(It's not the Winter Olympics, but give him a few more years.)

Updates -

UPDATE -- Coni is feeling better
by Weston Johnson
Ashby MN

We received "official" word this week regarding Coni's next step in her cancer treatment. We will be heading back to the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, from February 20th through the 26th for her first round of chemotherapy. She and I will fly out on the 20th, and she will undergo a few tests and scans on the 21st before starting the chemotherapy treatments on the 22nd. The treatments will continue through the 25th, and we'll fly back on the 26th.

After this initial trip, she will need to return for five days at a time every three weeks. We are not sure how many times she'll have to return, but it likely depends on how well the chemotherapy works and how quickly it is able to eliminate the remaining cancer.

For now, Coni is still resting at home, recovering from her surgery. She will head back to the Mayo Clinic on Monday for a follow-up appointment to make sure everything is healing properly. Her condition seems to be improving every day. This week she has visited with several friends who had not seen her since before the surgery, and they have noticed that she looks better now than before the surgery. While she still has some pain, she does not have the nausea and pain that were caused by the tumor, so she is looking and feeling better overall.

That is all the news I have for now. We are tentatively planning a benefit in Osakis on Sunday, March 12th to raise money to cover travel and other expenses, but the details are still being nailed down. I'll pass along any new information as soon as I know anything.



Let's send Coni lots of valentines and good wishes for a speedy and complete recovery! Valentines for Coni may be sent here:

To Coni
c/o Weston Johnson
7600 Berkshire Way
Maple Grove, MN 55311

Weston will gather up our cards and valentines and good wishes and present them to Coni. --The Editors!

UPDATE -- Brainerd Weekend
by Wyatt Johnson
Moorhead, MN

Rather than exchanging big gifts this year, the Johnson family decided to spend a weekend together somewhere. After a lot of research, we finally decided on Breezy Point Resort, on Pelican Lake, north of Brainerd, Minnesota. We were miraculously able to find a weekend that worked for everyone (at least it did when we decided on it back in November), and booked it for January 20-22.

After unloading our menagerie of dogs on unsuspecting friends and family across the state, we converged on Breezy Point late in the afternoon of January 20th. Beaver, Donna, Caity, Jayce, Wyatt, Jolene, Rylie, Brooklynn, Lori, Shawn, Chris, Jessy, Ben, and Ashley all made the trip!

As the 20th approached, it became more apparent that Weston and Coni would not be joining us. We eventually found out that Coni's surgery would be that day. We debated for a while trying to delay the weekend, but once we found that my mom was going to be able to go to Rochester to hang with Weston during the surgery, and knowing that Coni would already be surrounded by loving family, we decided to carry on. As we were all arriving, Weston called with updates that the surgery had been a resounding success, which made the mood on Friday night a lot lighter than it otherwise would have been.

The cabin we rented turned out to be a real gem. It had plenty of sleeping room for the 14 of us, with room for more! It had a huge living room/ dining room/ kitchen common area, with a pool table! This worked perfectly, as we wanted a place where we could all spend time together.

Since we had been taunting Rylie with the chance of swimming in a pool for about two months, we needed to take a dip on Friday night. The pool area was awesome, with a game area complete with ping pong, video games, and pool (the pool with a table and balls, and the pool with water)! The kids all had a great time! We cooked steak and chicken fajitas for supper, before playing some games and relaxing for the night.

Saturday morning found us at the complimentary breakfast buffet. This was NOT your typical free continental breakfast. It covered all the basic food groups -- fresh fruit, salty meats, crispy potatoes, and syrup soakers. This was a wonderful surprise, as we had planned on having to make our own breakfasts!

We opened some presents and took it easy for much of the morning. After some morning cross-country skiing by a few, Lori, Jessy, Donna, and Jolene decided all this roughing it called for some shopping. They took off for Pequot Lakes and Nisswa, while the rest of us played Trivial Pursuit. When they returned, another round of cross-country skiing was followed up by a chili supper. There was, of course, more swimming and ping pong, with some heated matches between Chris, Shawn, Lori, and Wyatt.

Sunday morning, there was another complimentary breakfast buffet waiting for us in the restaurant. There was much of the same good food, which was even better since we again didn't have to cook it or pay for it! We cleaned up the cabin and checked out, all agreeing that we had to do it again next year!


Back row, left to right: Ben Johnson, his girlfriend, Ashley Torgrimson, Shawn Ostendorf, Caity Chap, Chris Chap holding Jayce Chap. Front row: Wyatt Johnson, Lori Chap holding Rylie Johnson, Beaver & Donna Johnson, Jessy Wolff, and Jolene & Brooklynn Johnson.

UPDATE -- Sisters' Act
by Rylie and Brooklyn Johnson
Moorhead, MN

Mom and Dad's Party
as experienced by Rylie

I see Grandpa and Grandma (Beaver and Donna) have been stealing the show with their "he said/ she said" articles. Daddy thinks they're so clever as he ignores me while he laughs at their silliness. Brooklynn and I got to talking, and she was all, "We should do a "sister/ sister" update!"

Then I was all, "I knew you'd be worth something someday!" So we've decided to give it a try. While I've got the computer, Brooklynn's chewing on her sock. I think she smells, too. At the very least, I should come out of this looking smarter than her.

Mom's group of people she works with had a Christmas party at our house this week. Most of the people she works with have kids, so she decided to invite kids to the party, too! I helped Mom prepare by dragging my toys all over the house, so the kids would have a little sampling of what I had available when they got here. When Mom saw all the toys, she was like, "Rylie, you need to pick up those toys!!!!"

Nice. As soon as my friend Emily came, we both put on my princess dresses. A boy named Austin came, too, but we didn't have any princess dresses for him. I probably could have found one, but he didn't seem as interested as Emily and I were.

We played Hungry Hungry Hippos until Brooklynn came and stole one of the hippos. Then she tried to eat the marbles. Then we played my elephant game, which blows little butterflies out the elephant's trunk for us to catch. That was a great time until Brooklynn tried to eat the butterflies. We had a great time!

Mom and Dad's Party
as experienced by Brooklynn

Rylie's making me take a break from this delicious snack of pink socks to write to you. She says I'm supposed to write about this stupid party that was no fun. These other kids came that kept playing with my toys. I kept telling them they were mine, but every time I did that Daddy got mad at me and made me share.

I got to drink some purple Kool-Aid®, and that was awesome. Then Rylie wouldn't let me play her hippo game, so I took a hippo. She tried to get it away from me, so I put one of the marbles in my mouth. It would have been a great snack, but Daddy made me spit it out. Hey, a baby's gotta eat!

The paper butterflies from the elephant game tasted better, and they were a little easier to chew. A little peanut butter and they would have been a real treat. I even got to stay up past my bedtime!

After everyone left, Mommy and Daddy thought they could just put me to bed with a gallon of sugary Kool-Aid® in me. I let them know that would not be acceptable in the future.

There, Great-Grandma Anderson, is our first sister/sister update.

UPDATE -- Catering to the Matriarch
by Doug Anderson
St. Cloud, MN

I had the rare privilege of making dinner for our beloved editor and her husband on Monday night. I prepared New Zealand elk tenderloin with sauteed hedgehog mushrooms, whipped Yukon gold potatoes, broccolini and golden beets. The dinner was well-received, and at the risk of sounding vain, delicious. I think they were most impressed when I told them what the dinner would have cost them at my restaurant ... and they ate for free! I guess there are some advantages to having a chef for a son! Next time we are having black Chilean sea bass...

Don & Dorothy dine on Doug's creative cuisine.

I'd like to introduce Sue (Susan) Wright. Sue introduces her family in the Update that follows. Sue is our niece ... her dad being Don's brother Elwood. She has just recently made a move to Fountain Valley. We would really love to see a family picture! --The Editor

UPDATE -- Introduction to the Wright family
by Sue and Bill Wright
Fountain Valley, CA

Can't tell you how good it was to hear from you and get back on The Bulletin mailing list, after losing my e-mail addresses in our move.

We have had a lot of changes in our family the last couple of months.

My oldest daughter, Amber, and her husband, Bryan, bought a new house in Tustin. Their girls, Audrey (8) and Hali (5), love their new house. They especially like the fact that they didn't have to change schools since they are still in the Irvine school district.

Over the holidays, my second daughter, Brittany, and her husband, Dacer, made the decision to move to the Portland area. Dacer put in for a transfer in his job and they are planning to buy a house near the Beaverton area, where his parents live. Their daughter, Kennedy, is 2, and we will really miss them. Brittany has been doing Bill's 94-year-old mother's daily care. After much prayer, we decided we would move in with her to care for her.

My husband, Bill, is a hospital chaplain. His hospital is close by, in Anaheim.

Anneliese is a senior this year so is not changing schools. Journey (13) and JC (12) changed schools and are doing great. They are making friends quickly as the new school is close to our church and the kids go to youth group.

So the only one I have left out is Lindsay, our third daughter, who is also moving next week. Lindsay and her husband, Bradley, are moving to a larger place in Irvine, as they are expecting a daughter in May. We all have a lot of adjustments to make after everything seemed to stay the same for so long.

Please pass on my e-mail address.

Sue Wright

The Matriarch Speaks W
by Dorothy (Dake) Anderson
Alexandria, MN

To Our Son, the Chef,

I would suppose it to be gauche to ask for a doggie bag for leftovers while dining in your establishment -- but at our home it was my pleasure to save every smidgeon of the delicious cuisine. The next part of the letter is from the Matriarch alone, as my husband doesn't care for reheated leftovers. Well, I do! Especially of such delicacies.

Wednesday noon: I just came from a reheated lunch of frozen leftovers. I saw the mashed potatoes prepared, and observed the cream and butter used, so when I made up my frozen meals (five of them), I used just a little over 1/4 cup of the lovely tasting golden potatoes (ummm!). The mushrooms and vegetables I put over the medallions of elk to keep it all moist. In the fourth section of my dish I put some white grapes, sweetened with a teaspoon of sugared water ... heated it all on high for a few minutes ... and ate every bit of it, along with a tossed salad. It was very nearly as good as the lovely repast we had served to us by Chef Douglas on Monday evening ... and just think ... I have four more of these meals to enjoy later!

Just thought I should add -- the meat was so wonderfully tender that I actually cut it with my fork. It has just a hint of flavor from the wild -- and is so good, eaten with the sauteed mushrooms. I really think it the best meat I can remember having eaten!

Thank you for the lovely special treat, Doug...

Mom and Dad

Who Is This?

Let's Play a Guessing Game: Whenever it is handy to do so we will run a picture of someone of the subscribers or staff members of our e-magazine. Tell us who you think it is -- we will let you know who was the first to guess it right -- and the correct guess -- in the following week's Bulletin.
(Send us some to run; we will line them up in our staging area to take their turn.)

How many can you identify?

Answers to last week's mystery pictures (click here to review them):

The little child is Dwight Anderson, brother of Donald Anderson. The other photo is of their mother, Cleo Anderson; it is her high school graduation picture in 1926.

Elaine Anderson Wold
Wahpeton, ND

Editor's Note: You are first to answer and you are 100% correct.

I identify the first cute little baby to be my little sweet brother, Dwight Douglas Anderson, who was born when I was 10 years old. I had the privilege of caring for him a lot. We kept the rocker going!

The second picture is my mother, Cleo Berndt Anderson. The photo was taken at the time of her graduation, I believe.

Our thanks for another great Bulletin.

Mavis Anderson Morgan and Tom Morgan
Estero, FL

LTD Storybrooke

Breaking The Language Barrier
by Larry Dake

One of the naturalized Mexican families hosted a ranch barbeque at their home around Christmas time.

They barbequed venison and served it with fried rice and tortillas. This was a Spanish language event, a nice break for the Mexicans, many of whom were missing their loved ones back in Mexico.

Before supper, they showed a black-and-white, shoot-em-up movie, starring Mexicans wearing large sombreros while riding horseback. The movie was all in Spanish. It seemed like a lot of hollering, galloping, and gun-slinging.

One of the Mexicans at the barbeque lived in our front yard, in a tiny camper-trailer parked next to the sheep-camps. His name was Refugio. He was a quiet man in his late twenties or early thirties.

He was from a small town near Mexico City. His wife lived there, and his "bebe," who was now one year old. He'd never seen his child. He'd been working on the ranch since before the baby was born.

And he was homesick!

A number of the Mexican cowboys had similar stories of families left behind. They sent most of their paychecks back to their families in Mexico.

José said that in Mexico he had to work all day to buy a bag of potatoes. He was from the southern tip of the country.

Martinez, who worked at the feedlot near us, had been working long enough that he could now afford to bring his wife and two children to the ranch. He was excited about their planned arrival in the spring.

The two Peruvian sheep herders rode over to the barbeque with our family. It was a rare social occasion for them. They stayed later than we did, so they rode back with Refugio.


On New Year's Eve day, I stopped by the sheep-camps and invited Esteban and Domingo to come for supper and the evening.

They came, bringing their cameras, and a Spanish/English dictionary. They wanted pictures of themselves with all of us, and we all pored over their dictionary to find words to communicate.

Domingo said he and Esteban would teach me Spanish, if I'd teach them English. That was agreeable to me.

He told us he hoped to earn enough money to open a small grocery store in Lima, Peru, where he was from. He said the neighborhood grocery stores there were typically in the front room of a house.

He showed us a picture of a "muchacha" he liked, back in Peru. She was dressed in beautiful Peruvian clothing -- rich purples and golds. He indicated she "is ready to dance!"

Domingo said he missed the Peruvian girls and the Peruvian music.

He had purchased a clarinet, to play in his sheep-camp. We asked if he'd play it for us. He went out to the sheep-camp and he brought the clarinet back. He played a few simple Peruvian tunes.

Sherry showed him some of our sheet music. He was unfamiliar with how to read notes and he didn't understand how music reads on a page.

Domingo was from the city. He had never worked with sheep before coming to America. He came for the money. He earned about $600 a month herding sheep, and had opportunity to spend very little of it in the United States. His groceries, work clothing, and housing were provided by the ranch. With the difference in the value of the currencies, between Peru and the United States, the sheep herders could expect to go home relatively rich, after three years.

Domingo had two years left on his three-year "green card."

Esteban had a wife and eight kids in Peru. He had recently had the boss's son purchase a saxophone for him. He hoped to play the saxophone in the streets of his home town in Peru, to earn a living for his family.

Esteban brought his saxophone into our house when Domingo went to get his clarinet. He was not able to play any music on it. He would need lots of practice! It looked like a complex musical instrument.

Unlike Domingo, Esteban had some experience with sheep. At one time his family had owned two of them!

Sherry hemmed two pairs of pants for Domingo and showed him how to run a washing machine.

Esteban and Domingo soon worked their way into the fabric of our lives.

Late one cold night, walking back from the sheep pens with Esteban, I was awestruck by the beauty of the clear desert sky. We had just crossed the fence, using the steps of the stile, when Esteban pointed to the full moon.

"Luna!" he said.

I repeated, "Luna."

"Aaaiah!" he exclaimed, slapping me on the back, "Si, si!"

I pointed back up at the brilliant, white orb, and said, "Moon!"

"Moon," he repeated, cracking a big smile, "Moon."

Esteban, left; Sherry, Domingo holding Amy, Larry & Sarah, right.

Hurricane Watch
By Beaver

In basic training we were taught to follow orders whether they made any sense to us or not. Having experienced the worst hurricane ever to hit Biloxi on my first night on the base, I was easily taken in by the "old timers" when I moved into permanent barracks.

"Johnson- get- on- your- raincoat- hat- reflector- belt- take- your- flashlight- and- get- out- on- the- front- step- right- now- the- lieutenant- says- all- barracks- will- immediately- post- a- hurricane- watch," was the greeting I got from my shift leader when I returned to the barracks after my 6 p.m. to midnight school shift.

It was a stormy night, with low clouds scudding across the sky. I felt slightly silly standing in front of the barracks, flashlight in hand, wearing rain gear and reflector belt. Several Airmen returning to the barracks expressed appreciation for the job I was doing for them. I began to wonder what I was supposed to do if I did see a hurricane?

After a while I realized that hurricanes don't just suddenly appear like tornadoes, but are tracked for several days before they reach land. Also, there were no hurricane watches posted in front of the other barracks. As I was considering how much trouble I could get in for deserting my post to ask some questions, the jerk who had sent me out showed up again, "Welcome to the barracks, you are now properly initiated." Several guys were lined up inside the door waiting to shake my hand and welcome me to the barracks before I could slink back to my room and get rid of my rain gear.

My only consolation, as I retreated to my room to lick my wounds, was that there would be more new guys coming, and with any luck, they would be even dumber than me, but that's another story...

Travelogue t

Greg Dake and Sonja Maness left Raleigh, North Carolina, for Shanghai, China, on January 6th and returned January 28th. It was a business trip for Greg and Sonja went along. They took extra time for sightseeing while they were there. (Greg is the son of Ernie and Carolyn Dake, grandson of LeRoy and Vonnie Dake, and grand nephew of the Matriarch, Dorothy Dake Anderson.)

Hotel breakfast in China, with smiley-face potato cakes, right. :)
First Day In Shanghai

Sunday morning we woke up around 8 a.m. We were very glad we'd done so much to pre-adjust our schedules before arriving; it really paid off. We had gone to sleep at 11 p.m. or so Saturday night and slept a good nine hours. After we had showered and dressed, we headed to the "Club Lounge" for breakfast.

The hotel has floors called the "Club Level" set up for business travelers. You have to have a keycard to a room to even get the elevator to take you to these levels. One level has the lounge, which serves a free, full breakfast each morning. The breakfast offerings are a mix of Eastern and Western foods. There were silver-dollar pancakes, and bacon. There were small link sausages that tasted like very bland pork.

There were two kinds of dumplings in bamboo steamers. One kind had a red filling that tasted kind of like a very sweet pepper sauce, not hot at all. The other had a green filling that looked and tasted like spinach, but also rather sweet. I liked the green, but the red, not so much. There was also what looked like runny scrambled eggs, which we didn't try.

Another steamer had noodles with a brown sauce and a few pieces of onion, red pepper, and etc., cooked in. Yet another had what seemed to be rice porridge, which Greg tried but I didn't. There were also round potato cakes, sort of like hashbrowns. Greg ate them and said they were good, I tried one later, but after it was cold, and wasn't impressed.

I had pancakes, sausages, noodles, one of each kind of dumpling, and coffee. Greg later brought over some orange juice. The hotel employees that get your room number as you enter the lounge are also, apparently, the waitstaff. We were brought coffee and offered refills by a young Chinese lady whose name tag read "Beth." We've seen other employees with name tags with Anglicized names; one at the restaurant was "Vivian." We were the only Americans in the lounge. There were a few tables with Asians eating, and one table near us with four German youths.

After we ate breakfast we went by the fitness room, so we could find it and see how the facilities looked. Very nice, new equipment, very clean. We went back to the room and hooked up the router to work on contacting family at home and setting up Skype and Yahoo ID's for use while here. And, of course, start this blog.

After that we logged into WoW for awhile, at which time Greg chatted in game a bit with his brother-in-law, who also plays. He also chatted with our friend Lance back home in Durham, North Carolina, in game a bit. I didn't stay logged into the game for more than a few minutes, to be sure I really could access it from here in Shanghai, then logged off and started working on getting this blog updated. So all of you back home reading this must know how dedicated I am to keeping you up to date, if I actually logged out of WoW to work on it!

A little while later we decided to venture out and explore the street our hotel was on. We walked past a disagreement on the street corner between some people with a truckload of fresh produce, a policeman and a few other people. We ignored it and went into the "Family Mart" across the street, where we bought instant noodles (not much different than Ramen noodles back in the States, but with a lot more flavor in the mix) and a small bottle of sake. The noodles were RMB3.40 each; the sake was I think about RMB15. When we came out of the store, the truck, the policeman and the people were all gone.

We walked a little farther along the street, passing a small food market and a lot of real estate offices. Then a laundry, which we were happy to see, as the laundry service at the hotel is expensive. We walked back on the other side of the street and found a video store. We bought "Batman Begins," a three DVD yoga workout, and the Enya CD "Amarantine" that we didn't have yet. It cost us RMB 59 for all that, which is about $7.50 USDollars. It is still confusing to convert costs from USDollars to RMB. It is roughly 8RMB to 1USDollar. If you multiply the RMB amount by .12516 you get the US Dollar amount.

The street we are on has just a few shops; it is mostly real estate agent offices. This is understandable, as there are dozens of high-rise apartment buildings around us. There is a Japanese restaurant and a tea house nearby, both of which we'll probably try out soon.

We came back to the hotel then, and looked around in the hotel gift shop for a few minutes. I wanted postcards to start mailing home but decided it was not worth 60RMB to me to get the book of them right then, seeing as how we had spent 59RMB a few minutes ago and gotten a lot more for our money!

Back to the room and we just hung out awhile before going to supper. Greg wasn't feeling well, not sick but just tired again, so he napped for a couple of hours. About 9 p.m. we went down for supper at another of the hotel restaurants, hoping to be in time for their weekend buffet that looked really good on the posters around the hotel and elevators. Sadly, it was already put away when we got there. We went in anyway and looked at the menu.

This particular restaurant was the traditional Shanghainese restaurant, so we got our first taste of real local food. We ordered BBQ pork and roast chicken in soy sauce, as well as fried rice with egg white from the à la carte menu. A few minutes later the waitress came around to say they were out of the chicken, would we like something else instead? She recommended the roast goose, which we agreed to.

By this time, the pork had been brought to us. It was pretty good, but again it was sweet and not very BBQ-tasting to me. Soon the roast goose was brought out, and I thought it was pretty good, too. It wasn't as greasy as I was afraid, as my few times eating goose in the past had been pretty greasy. It was roasted with the skin on and the fat made a thick rind around the outside. They brought duck sauce with it but I didn't try it 'til the goose was almost gone. It was a LOT stronger than the duck sauce you get in the states, almost to the point of being unrecognizable.

Finally, the fried rice came out, and we finished the meal eating a bowl or two of that each. It wasn't very filling food, but I didn't really feel hungry afterward, either. Greg didn't think it was enough, but he didn't want to do any more experimenting on food that night. He said he might order room service later or something.

Back in our room, we just relaxed awhile. There was a bit of confusion on how to set the alarm on the clock provided by the hotel, and we hadn't brought an alarm clock of our own. Greg called the front desk to ask for a wake-up call, in case we didn't figure it out. But then, soon after, he figured it out, so he got double wake-ups Monday morning. The digital clock displays in 24-hour time, i.e., military time rather than 12-hour time. So instead of 10:00 p.m. it says 22:00, etc. Having that figured out, and assured we would be awake in time for him to start his first day working on site, we fell asleep around midnight.

to be continued...

Photo Editor's Note: We are serializing Sonja and Greg's web log and illustrating it with the photos they are posting, but there is far more photo material available than we will be able to fit in The Bulletin, so we will also provide the links to the blog, for those who are interested:

Web Log:

Editor's Note: Frans has supplied us with a number of facts about The Netherlands -- too many for a single issue, so we will print them here in the Travelogue, a few at a time. Enjoy!

Greetings from the Netherlands
Frans de Been
Oosterhout, The Netherlands

Did you know...

That the Dutch are the tallest people in Europe.

That the name "Netherland" is derived from the Dutch word "neder" meaning "low," and the term Low Countries is used collectively for Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands, a reference to the low-lying nature of the land.

That both its people and their language are known to English-speakers as Dutch, a name derived from the old language named Diets. The old low-frankish dialects were very familiar to the "low-german" dialects that were spoken in most parts of northern Europe. Together they were referred to as "nederduits" (low-german) and the language in the area of the low countries was called "diets," which explains the name "Dutch" in English.

That nearly a quarter of its surface area is below sea level. The lowest point in the Netherlands, near Rotterdam, is 6.7 metres [22 feet] below sea level. Its highest point, the Vaalserberg, is 312 metres [1,024 feet] above sea level. The Vaalserberg is in the southeast of the country, where the borders of the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany meet.

That in the entrance lobby of the new town hall in Amsterdam there is a glass pillar filled with water. The level of the water rises and falls according to the rise and fall of the tide. At low tide the water level falls below ground; at high tide it rises to almost 7 feet above ground. This is to say, were it not for the sea wall and the city's defenses against the elements, Amsterdam would be swamped by the waters of the North Sea twice a day.

Skinny Recipes   6
from Dorothy Dake Anderson
Alexandria, MN
Read all about it...

I am doing reduced calorie recipes for our Weight Loss Support Group. For those who may not have received my letter, I send out a recipe a day. (They are given in points, serving size and approximate calorie count.) Just ask, and I will add you to the group that receives them...

Fruit Salad
Individual serving size 3/4 cup (3 points) -- about 135 calories.

1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple
   (Do not drain pineapple)
2 (11 oz.) cans mandarin oranges
1 (8 oz.) carton Cool Whip Light
1 small box Raspberry Jell-O
1 (15 oz.) can light fruit cocktail
1 small box sugar-free vanilla pudding

1. Mix together pineapple and Jell-O.
2. Drain juices from oranges and fruit cocktail very well.
3. Stir oranges and fruit cocktail into pineapple and Jell-O mixture.
4. In separate bowl, mix together Cool Whip Light and vanilla pudding mix.
5. Fold together the two mixtures. Serve chilled.

I just received this letter:

I just had to tell you I made the fruit salad recipe when the kids were here this weekend. Jennie and I agreed it was superb! After they left today, I made another batch, only altered it some to cut more sugars out and again it is wonderful. I used chunk pineapple and replaced the juice with diet Sprite and used lemon pudding instead of vanilla and cut out some of the Cool Whip. Even with my alterations it was yummy. Kroger has canned oranges packed with no sugar, so that cuts some sugar and calories, too. Thank goodness for sugar-free Jell-O and pudding. :) Jennie is a Weight Watchers lifer, so she understands the point system well.

We did well with healthy choices this weekend. Every good day counts. :)

Carolyn Dake
Duluth, GA

Old Time Memories ...

Caribbean Coral -- The Sequel
by Don Anderson
Alexandria, MN

This is my part of the tale of the 1949 Kaiser automobile you read about in last week's Bulletin. It starts like this: Betty Droel's father bought it new.

In the fall of 1955, we moved from North Dakota to Minnesota. We had lost four crops and thought we could fare better in Minnesota. We moved to a farm 14 miles north of the Alexandria, Miltona area. It was 120 acres with nice buildings, a nice dairy barn and silo -- $16,000 full price!

We then visited often, over at Eagle Bend, where our conventions are held. On one visit I spotted a Kaiser stored in a machine building, also used for convention.

I asked Bertram Bartlett about the Kaiser and he told me it might be for sale. A lady in The Cities owned it, a Mrs. Weiland, and he would inquire as to whether she wanted to sell it.

It was during the summer of 1956 that I was told it was for sale.

I would have liked to have bought it -- it was a beauty and loaded with extras.

With the hard times we had experienced in North Dakota, I could not afford it.

I told my dad about it, not thinking he would be interested. But one day Dad and Mom come over for a visit and wanted to go over and look at that Kaiser!

Dad had several cars standing in the yard at home and why would he buy another one? He liked cars.

He bought it and drove it back home that day. Title was sent to him. At that time, insurance was only for elite people, so of course on the cars and trucks Dad carried no insurance.

He really liked the '49 Kaiser and it became his number one car. He also had a 1949 Dodge Wayfarer, bought new (his first and last new car), plus a 1931 Chevrolet, a 1948 Chrysler, a 1940 Chevrolet that my little brother Dwight "remodeled," a 1947 Kaiser, a 1929 Dodge, a 1925 Reo, a 1930 Chevrolet grain truck and a Ford Model "A" car.

At the time of his death, March 30, 1962, he also owned a later model Chrysler New Yorker. I'm not sure of the model year (maybe 1956).

As I had left home, I cannot think of what happened to the Kaiser. My brother Dwight cannot remember, either, as he was only about 10 years old. My brother Junior doesn't know, but he remembers it quite well.

This Kaiser was deluxe in every sense of the word. Luxury interior, whitewall tires, spotlight, visor -- a lot of goodies. It also was very comfortable to drive.

As far as the price, I do not remember. I am sure it was peanuts to what it would be worth today, if it was still around. Cars at that time sold new for about $1,400 to $1,700 (if you had that kind of money).

All statements are accurate to the best of my knowledge.

Celebrations & Observances
From the Files of
Hetty Hooper

This Week's Birthdays:
February 6---Melody Printz
February 6---Kelli Nicole Mellon (7 years old)
February 7---Rylie Johnson (3 years old)
Happy Birthday!

More February Birthdays:
February 1---Kathlyn (Johnson) Anderson
February 4---Cameron Birkholz

February 28---Eric Anderson

February Anniversaries
February18---Roy and Betty Weiland Droel (13 years)
February 24---Jess and Louise Cloyd (61 years)
February 26---Tim and Char Morgan Myron (23 years)
February 28---Junior and Doris Anderson (44 years)

February Special Days
February 2---Groundhog Day
February 12---Abraham Lincoln's Birthday
February 14---Valentine's Day
February 20---Presidents' Day
February 22---George Washington's Birthday

Miss Hetty's Mailbox:

Miss Hetty and Staff,

Thank you for the birthday greeting! I spent my day eating cake and opening presents with my family. Very enjoyable!

Whitney Johnson
Long Lake, MN

Hallo All,

So we have had a nice Sunday where we have celebrated the 17th birthday of Marloes, my daughter. There were a lot of family and friends on her day. Here some pictures of Marloes and, of course, her cake!

Take care you all and have a nice day!

Frans de Been
Oosterhout, The Netherlands

Marloes De Been with birthday cake.

Appreciate the card. Thx. lm

This is Larry McCorkell's thanks for his card ... He emulates his hero, Abe Lincoln, in brevity. The sentiment was fine! --Miss Hetty

Thank you Miss Hetty and Staff of The Bulletin, for the lovely birthday card. It is very thoughtful of you.

I especially enjoy the reminder that all around me nature won't be frozen and under blankets of snow forever. Today and tonight the snow is falling in large, beautiful flakes and I am quite sure I should hibernate until spring!

Thanks again for your good wishes and for the wonderful Bulletin we eagerly anticipate each week. You and your staff do a terrific work and we love each edition!

Kathlyn Anderson
Anchorage, AK

Miss Hetty Says

I think that is a splendid idea to give Coni an avalanche of loving wishes ... I know the Editor (my boss) thoroughly enjoyed her Valentine's Day surprise last year.

Keep Us Posted!

Please drop Miss Hetty a line and tell us who, and what, we've missed. And how about a report (photos welcome) of YOUR special celebration?

'Many Thankse

Miss Hetty


Click here to review last week's Bulletin

Wow, what a great Bulletin! Ginny can write, too! I also think Beaver's and Donna's pieces are very entertaining. Keep 'em coming.

Marlene Johnson
Long Lake, MN

I s'pose I should have corrected this little misconception last week ... Ethan is actually 3 going on 4 now ... the pictures in the collage ... Two Going On Three ... were all taken from the second year of his little life ... details, details, details!

Another winner for Kimberly!

Loved Betty's story about the Caribbean Coral Kaiser! Uncle Don, we are waiting for your follow up!

What a Great Idea to have two versions of the same event...

So much for Creative Problem Solving, ltd! I thought it was a great idea ... I would have liked to watch your method.

I love the wide variety of material that shows up every week in The Bulletin.

Ginny McCorkell
Blaine, MN

I have a new favorite section of The Bulletin. This new business of Dad and Donna doing the same article from their own perspectives is AWESOME!!!

Wyatt Johnson
Moorhead, MN

I laughed, I cried, I concurred ... with Ginny's story about "Vegetable Soup -- With Rutabaga For Flavor." Yes, of course, the soup is better with rutabaga ... and a white turnip is a good addition, too. Trouble is, as Ginny noted, that when you assemble the astonishing variety of ingredients it takes to make a really worthy vegetable soup, it makes a LOT of soup.

So I was with her every step of the way ... and when Larry almost cried at the thought of prime rib going into the soup pot, I almost cried with him, even though I have a higher opinion of vegetable soup than Larry apparently does. I learned something, too -- having never heard of putting a rutabaga in the microwave to make it easier to peel. I might try that.

And look at all the willing help they found to eat that delicious soup! I thought that was great! I was downright envious. After spending much of an afternoon peeling and chopping vegetables, I end up with a Dutch oven full of soup ... and it doesn't freeze especially well. Always, I'm appalled at how many bowlfuls of soup I must ladle from the pot before I finally see the bottom of it. By then, I'm usually about as fond of soup as Larry is said to be. (And Miss Kitty is NO help at all. She eats exactly the same food at every single meal -- twice a day. She prefers it that way.)

Jerrianne Lowther
Anchorage, AK

The "little shaver" picture I sent this morning is Wade Printz, Justin and Melody Printz's son. Tonight, Wade might ride a sheep in the mutton bustin' at the stock show, so we might have a story to send soon! :) Keep up the GREAT work!

Justin and Melody Printz
Edgemont, SD

Last Week's Bulletin Review JKL
by Betty Droel
MoundsView, MN

Jerrianne, looks like you will be having competition soon with this Ethan, who takes such nice, clear pictures that make it to the first picture of The Bulletin. Notice how nicely he centered it? Not bad, not bad at all for one that is 2 going on 3.

I was so glad to see the Update on Coni right off the bat on the first page. Anyone who is a part of The Bulletin family is important to us all, and we are keenly interested. We know we'll hear how the chemo goes, too, and it just might be a wonderful surprise, being it's a research program. We can hope for that.

Also, the Update on Ben's and Heather's new baby, due in three months. Not everyone has a new home and a new baby all at once. We will be needing some pictures of them both, as soon as they're available.

And, oh yes, the Update on the Adairs. What a great picture of those two dear friends of ours! That was a wonderful surprise to see them there on that page. I hadn't heard about the "Ditto" story, so that was interesting.

We were glad to meet the Larsons from Ashby, too. I doubt The Bulletin will ever be wanting for news, with all the subscribers becoming a part of it, and we know it can only get better. May have to limit how much we send -- if it gets too thick. So far, so good. The editors haven't complained, as yet!

This dieting subject by both Donna Mae and Beaver is hitting some of us right between the eyes. I would rather skip that page, but would miss two pretty interesting stories if I did. The next one ... The Matriarch Speaks, is so informative -- telling us about the three more subscriber families.

Talk about photogenic ... Levi is really a cutie, and one could think of several captions for his photos, especially this one.

I tried to get Ginny/Bitzi/Ditto to share her ideas of the "Guess" picture, but she was just as stumped as I was. I am thinking the first picture is Don. The mischievous looking pretty lady I don't even have a guess about.

Diana, I know some very honest and helpful real estate agents, but none in your area. That is serious to trust your whole home buying experience to a realtor you don't know very well, and I know you miss your husband more and more at times like this. You aren't rushing into anything, so have time to ask lots of questions.

Well, Mr. LTD Storybrooke, your picture of all those sheep totally "boggles my mind," as they say. Where would you ever start -- or finish -- with such a maze of animals? I would have given up looooooong ago, but you just persevere right along, regardless of the hopelessness of it all. Am sure your responsibility caring for that sweet wife and two little girls kept you motivated to work on and work on and work on. She would have been a big part of your decision to stay at it, as she was such a help.

The trip to China was so interesting. Imagine a view like that from your hotel window. I think being young would be the one advantage and incentive for an adventure like that. As tired as you were, thank you for taking time and interest to share it all with us. I clicked on and printed it, to read more at leisure, as it looks so interesting. It's printing pages and pages ...

I just finished reading ALL 17 pages of the most interesting Travelblog that Sonja had written (so far). I read every word. Couldn't miss a thing as it was so colorfully written that you almost felt you were there observing them. I am very sure they were thankful to touch their feet on home soil safely. Very, very interesting. Thank you so much for taking time to share it with us all, Greg and Sonja.

Now, we hope to have a Travelogue to The Netherlands. This Bulletin never quits being exciting and interesting and informative.

The next time I see IdaMae, which will be Friday, I will be asking her how she liked the soup with the rutabaga flavor. Her birthday is January 30th. Maybe she would have liked to have a birthday meal with some of that soup. Sounds like you have plenty left. Don't call me, I'll call you.

Thank you for kindly including the story next to my own heart about the Kaiser. I was sure Don would add a paragraph or two from his side of it. (He did! We saved it for this week. --Ed.)

Trevor is already starting to write to Miss Hetty. Happy Birthday, Cowboy!!!

I do enjoy the Letters to the Editor as well as the rest of The Bulletin. So, thanks for each one that sends in. I love commenting on it all, and I love reading others' comments. So many things I had missed the first time through. It truly is "Good to the Last Dot."

We need an update on Miss Kitty surviving the Alaska winter!



Illustration © Virginia McCorkell; photo by Melody Printz
Little shaver Wade Printz gets ready to go mutton bustin'.

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