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In Our Own Backyard...Let it go!

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columns Cloquet, 55720
Pine Journal
(218) 879-2078 customer support
Cloquet Minnesota 122 Avenue C 55720

I now know all the words to “Let it Go,” the infectious theme song from “Frozen.”

They stick in my mind by day and haunt my dreams by night. Somehow, it’s hard to escape when you watch the popular Disney film three times in as many days….

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On Monday morning we said goodbye to our two young granddaughters after two wonderful weeks at our house, along with their mom and dad. It was the stuff every grandparent’s dreams are made of, since both girls are still at the excited-about-everything, ask-a-million-questions, bedtime cuddles, “out-of-the-mouths of babes” stage.

When their parents departed for a couple of days to hike the Lake Superior Trail, they had only been out the door for about 10 minutes when 4-year-old Maia came up to me and suggested, “Now that our parents are gone, maybe we can have a little extra sugar….”

Ken introduced Madeline, the 6-year-old, who had always been very artsy and ethereal, to the game of baseball out in the driveway. After hours of playing and pleading with anyone willing to play with her, she declared, “I think I like sports now!”

When on an afternoon fishing junket aboard the pontoon boat, 4-year-old Maia (who had been doing her angling in the minnow bucket), declared she was ready to transition to “the wild sea.” Ken thrashed around in his tackle box until he found a broken silver-and-blue Rapala lure, snipped off the sharp barbs on the hooks and rigged it up on Maia’s Barbie fishing rod. She studied it intently for a full 10 seconds or so and then cast her blue eyes up at Grandpa and said, “Don’t you have any pink ones?”

I took the girls over to a friend’s house one day to brush and ride ponies. We were discussing the ponies’ names and wondering if they were girls or boys. Maia immediately leaned over, scoped out one pony’s undercarriage and proclaimed, “This one’s a boy!”

Their unending questions are both probing and mind boggling. While Maia was mostly interested in how to put on mascara, how many pairs of earrings I have and what color bra I wear, Madeline pondered how gulls can swallow fish, why some people deal drugs and if kids who live in poor neighborhoods are happy.

We had planned to finish out their stay in Minnesota with a trip up the North Shore, reserving a picturesque cabin on Lake Superior where the girls could sleep in bunk beds, throw rocks into the lake and play along the ledge rock overlooking the water. We built bonfires on the shore, hiked a couple of scenic trails, ate doughnuts at “The World’s Best Donots” in Grand Marais, and scanned the beaches for agates. As we tucked the girls into their bunk beds one night, Madeline said, “Why did we come all the way up here when there are so many fun things to do at your house?”

We spent two entire weeks going headlong into every day, but that much non-stop activity eventually takes its toll.

And so it was, on the final afternoon at our house, the two very tired little girls agreed to a long bubble bath and a final viewing of “Frozen.” The by-now-familiar music went on and on, with the girls singing along at the tops of their voices. When the movie was at last over, they soon became engrossed in an old Mickey Mouse filmstrip at the end of the DVD.

We grown-ups, however, were still reluctantly humming “Let it Go” under our breath.

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Wendy Johnson
(218) 879-1950
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