I received a great email from someone recently, apologizing for taking so long to get back to me with an answer to a question I had asked. She stated that the email “got buried” in her inbox.
I can so relate to this! We get hundreds of emails every day at the News-Herald. The majority of them are junk or not relevant to our community. But each and every message has to be perused to make sure it’s not important.
There have been many times when I’ve been set to “trash” a message and at the last moment realized that the text of the email included the name of a local business or individual being recognized—or included a link that led to some exciting news for our readers.
For every 500 or so emails that claim to have a “local” connection, there is one that truly does.
It’s overwhelming at times and sadly, as my friend noted, sometimes things do get buried as new messages push the old ones further and further down the inbox list. I try to reverse the order in which I retrieve my messages occasionally, but that’s risky as then some get missed in the middle.
It used to be said that the number of keys a person carried was a good indicator of how busy his or her life was. Now I think it depends on the number of electronic methods of communications an individual has to deal with.
It’s hard to believe that email, which was relatively new in the 1980s has become such a vital tool in our everyday lives. And it’s hard to believe that what was once cutting edge technology is becoming passé. Now there is Facebook, Facebook private messaging, Messenger, Twitter, blogs to follow, forums to frequent, chatrooms, Skype and Facetime and so much more.
It’s a bit mind-boggling keeping track of it all. Especially when you add in telecommunications—a few decades ago most of us had only two telephone numbers to share with others, work and home. Now with the omnipresent cell phone we all have three and along with it, text messaging.
It wouldn’t be so difficult if everyone was on the same page, but no such luck. I recently wanted to send out a message to a group of friends and found myself typing and then cutting and pasting the same message into a Facebook message, an email and a text.
Keeping track of the preferred method of communication for different friends and colleagues can be complicated. So, I could empathize with the friend who found my email message days after it had been sent. It made me feel better about the many times the same thing has happened to me.
Maybe we’d be better off just writing a letter and dropping it in the mailbox!
Your email inbox is a bit like a Las Vegas roulette machine. You know, you just check it and check it, and every once in a while there’s some juicy little tidbit of reward, like the three quarters that pop down on a one-armed bandit. And that keeps you coming back for more.
As I’ve mentioned in the past, sometimes I take a detour while writing Unorganized Territory. I start out with a certain subject and veer off to another, completely changing the topic and the tone of my weekly column.
That is exactly what happened last week when I started with a mention of being a Girl Scout leader. I meant to write a column about the joys and frustrations of being a leader and I somehow ending up commenting on the school board meeting that I missed because I was being a Girl Scout leader at the Court of Awards.
So this week, I’m back on the Girl Scout path. We’ll see if I can stay on task.
I really do want to share some thoughts on Girl Scouting, as our local group really needs more leaders and co-leaders. I’m hoping to entice some women who want to have an impact on the girls of tomorrow to join us.
Leaders grow with their girls. The little ones that start with us in kindergarten get a new troop number that they keep through their years of scouting, along with their leader. I started as co-leader when “my girls” were first grade Brownies. I’m now the leader of the soon-to-be fifth grade Juniors of Troop 4109.
Leaders eventually work themselves out of their volunteer jobs. For example, Leader Arvis Thompson has had her troop members graduate high school and go off to college and other great adventures. Sandy Stover and Laura LaFavor’s girls are getting closer to graduation.
It’s a nice system of mentorship through the years. But it also creates a void. This year’s kindergarten troop of Daisies becomes next year’s first graders with the same leader. So we need leaders to step up for the next group of girls. We need moms or grandmothers or aunts to join them on their journey.
It is kind of scary. There are Girl Scout rules and regulations and a few financial forms to complete for dues and cookies. The established Girl Scout leaders help out as much as they can with meeting templates and activity suggestions and so on, but when it comes down to meeting time and keeping a bunch of energetic girls engaged, it can be challenging.
There have been more than a few meetings that I felt as if I spent the entire time barking orders. “Don’t tip your chair.” “Wait until it’s your turn to talk.” “Please put away your cell phone.” “If you can’t get along, you won’t get to sit next to each other.” And so on…
There have been weeks when I am scrambling to come up with an idea for a meeting activity to fulfill a badge requirement. My co-leader daughter-in-law Michele and I try to plan ahead, but let’s be realistic. We’re talking about unorganized territory here.
I don’t share the downside of scouting to dissuade someone from becoming a leader. On the contrary, I just want to be honest. Sometimes it is downright hard.
But, it is so worth it. For example, my troop has embarked on a wonderful community project with which to earn the Girl Scout Bronze award. I will not give away their secret, but I will say a lot of work is involved.
Just before school ended, we had to make an appointment to talk to Principal Gwen Carman and Student Success Coordinator Anna Sandstrom about the project. I told the girls when we would be meeting— at noon on a Tuesday, not our regular Girl Scout day or time.
The meeting date arrived and after an extremely stressful morning, I entered the school in a not-so-cheerful state of mind. I thought surely the girls had forgotten and the office would have to page them to Ms. Carman’s office.
I should not have doubted these delightful young ladies. Not only had they not forgotten, they had reminded Ms. Carman of the meeting— several times.
They arrived outside the office at the appropriate time, all smiles and ready to explain their project. I couldn’t have been prouder. After our discussion in Principal Carman’s office, I said goodbye to the girls, but not before some high fives and hugs. I exited the school grinning, the crummy events of that morning forgotten.
It’s days like that that make it all worthwhile!
Ours is a circle of friendships
united by ideals.
Juliette Gordon Low
Just found out there’s a power outtage scheduled for 9-12 noon today. NO phones or e-mail until it’s over!
We are seeking a General Manager that has a strong understanding of the rapid changes in the electric utility and broadband deployment to help us continue our growth and further expand our ability to ensure the best possible services and solutions for our members.
To qualify, candidates must have a Bachelors degree in business, marketing or related field. Relevant experience in the telephone and/or electric industry is also required, with at least five years of leadership experience. The successful candidate must multi-task, be a creative team member and leader, technical, strategic and most importantly, member and employee focused.
To apply, please mail, fax, or e-mail your resume with salary requirements by June 24, 2015 to: Cindy Schue, 12300 Elm Creek Boulevard, Maple Grove, MN 55369-4718. Fax: 763.445.6531. Cschue@grenergy.com. An EEO/AA Employer. No agencies please.
The Trapper’s Daughter & The…..
The day we have all been waiting for is finally here!!!
It is my great pleasure today, on April 25th 2015, to present to you for the first time,
Wow, isn’t she a beauty??
After their long sail along the Lake Superior coast, the Trapper’s Daughter, Bear & Raccoon are finally able to relax on the shore near a big campfire. With beautiful bright embers floating toward the starlit sky, this print … read more
Day 5! Day 5! Day 5!
Today is the last day of our countdown before we reveal the NEW Trapper’s Daughter print for 2015!!
We kick off today’s countdown with a truly incredible print from 2013,
“The Trapper’s Daughter Crosses the Height of the Land as Winter Fades From the Woods & Waters.”
“The Trapper’s Daughter and the Spring Moose” came into the gallery like a hurricane. We could hardly keep this image on the walls and in the bins after … read more
Day 4 of Our Trapper’s Daughter Adventure!
Day 4 of our Trapper’s Daughter adventure beings with the winner of our 2014 Summer Solstice Trapper’s Daughter Bracket Competition….
In 2010, Rick Allen decided to try something new. With 26 different wood blocks, and 26 individual passes through the press, Rick and his famous helper Janelle, the Warrior Printress, worked their tails off on this one!!!
But wait…. there’s MORE!
The Kenspeckles decided to add a beautiful moon to the Long … read more
Day 3 of our Trapper’s Daughter Voyage!
We commence day 3 of our Trapper’s Daughter voyage with the eighth image in Rick Allen’s series….
Back in 2009, you could hear all of our jaws collectively drop, “KER PLUNK,” as we viewed “The Trapper’s Daughter Takes the Otter Slide” for the first time. What a beauty! Rick Allen really went to town with this gem.
One of my favorite parts about Rick’s prints is that so often they spark a wonderful, rich memory. … read more
“The Trapper’s Daughter & the Second Day”
We kick off day two of our Trapper’s Daughter countdown with Rick Allen’s 4th image in this enchanted series. Released in 2006, this beauty is a gallery staff favorite:
Our first glimpse of the Trapper’s Daughter out of the winter, we see her strong, axe wielding arms and bare feet. A vision of strength and courage, she crosses the lake atop two loons. When looking at the clouds, I can’t help … read more
The Trapper’s Daughter & the Unwritten Story
This year’s Gallery Hop Earth Day Celebration at Siiviis in Duluth will be unlike any other event before! Why, do you ask? Well my friends, because this year’s celebration is truly a dream come true. On April 25th, the ladies of Siiviis, along with the Kenspeckles of the Kenspeckle Letterpress present to you:
A THIRTEEN year retrospective featuring all 17 of the Trapper’s Daugher breathtaking appearances in print, including this year’s truly amazing addition to … read more
Central Gunflint Ski Trail Conditions on 3-21-15
New Snow Last 24 hours: 0”
New Snow Last 7 days: 0”
Trail Base, Staked: 3”-10” varying by area.
Snow in Woods, Staked: Average 12”
Groomed with classic tracks: 70 K
Groomed for skating: 53.4 K
Surface Conditions: Tilled snow
Last grooming day: 3-21-15
Snowshoe trails: Open
Total snowfall since Nov. 1: 75.00”
Comments: Don’t put away those skis yet; we’re still grooming and skiing on the Central Gunflint Ski system! Definitely expect spring skiing conditions though the freshly groomed skate and classic lanes are still holding up very well and are, condition wise, great after a recent grooming! Continuing with our plans from last week, we are still grooming select trails at this time, depending on each individual trail’s condition. Currently, 42.5 kilometers of trails have been/will be groomed between today and yesterday.
Twin Citians are reveling in the record-setting March temperatures in the metro area. Up here in the far north we are also experiencing some warmer days, but unlike other parts of Minnesota, we have a serious base of deep snow. We’ve seen a little snow melt, especially off our roofs and roads, but as of 5 PM on Tuesday we still have a solid 12 inches of compacted base on the ski trails, with far more than that in the woods.
If you’re coming up to ski in the next few days, you should prepare for spring skiing conditions. Spring skiing is the best, but the sun is powerful at this time of year so even on a chilly day there will be freezing and thawing. Plan ahead for the varying conditions.
Early morning: The skate lanes and classic tracks will be frozen hard; perhaps the tracks will be icy if they have thawed the day before and refrozen overnight. These conditions are great for fast skating with minimal edge control on hills. Grip tape or waxless skis are your best choice for early morning skiing in these hard tracks.
Mid morning: The sun is softening up the tracks and the skate lanes are still firm. This is the best skiing of the day. When skiing through shade and sun your skis will glide differently; be careful on the hills! If it’s chilly but sunny, these conditions can last most of the day.
Late afternoon: As things warm up the snow will start to lose its structure, and you’ll sink in. Because of the released moisture, your kick will be compromised, and skating will get harder due to “suction”. Waxless skis are the best choice for these conditions.
Then, if it drops below freezing at night, the cycle repeats.
The trails are being groomed differently for these conditions. We plan to continue grooming for as long as possible. Later in the month we usually open some ski trails to snowshoeing, but we’re not ready for that yet. Our actual snowshoe trails, though, seem fairly unaffected by the temperatures and offer a great additional option if there are any afternoons that seem too warm to ski.
Our musher, Erik Simula, is still taking trips out and should be able to continue for quite a while longer. Like skiing, however, on very sunny days the dog sled trips go better in the morning; the dogs have to work very hard to pull groups through wetter snow. If you’re planning a dog sled trip in March, earlier appointments are the best choice.
For those of you in the rest of Minnesota, your spring has probably truly started. Up here, however, we know that the next blizzard could still come at any moment. We will be extremely surprised if our winter is actually winding down now.