Print Email
Written by Jorrie Johnson

In December, I got to participate in the BeYou Renew women’s weekend retreat hosted by LuAnn Buechler at the lovely Holy Spirit Retreat Center about an hour west of Rochester. On that particular Friday evening, after the sun had long gone down, I drove anxiously into the darkness. The wind swirled around my vehicle, carrying me through the cold blizzardy night. At about 7:30 p.m., I arrived at the retreat center lit with warm lights. I found a blazing wood fire and a small group of women who were listening to a Sister explain the house rules. We sat in a circle, opening our hearts and minds to each other. 

Throughout the weekend, I became calm as I identified and prioritized my professional passions and markers for 2017. I am passionate about earning what I am worth, being creative, problem-solving, project management, work-life balance and making a difference in the world. What makes me happy are living my passions and purpose.



Health, Wealth and Happiness: Your Guide to Getting What You Want

Print Email
Written by Emily Watkins Photography by Mike Hardwick Photography

What do you really want in life? That’s a hard question. We are so busy taking care of others that we lose sight of who we really are and what we truly desire. Rochester Women magazine wants to change that for you in 2017. This series will provide expertise from local professionals and give you “homework” that will guide you to DISCOVER your best self. 


How do you know what you want? LuAnn Buechler, certified facilitator of the Passion Test, coaches by “helping people to reach deep inside and determine what is most important to them in their life.” She helps people identify their top five passions and then provides them with tools to stay on track. 

LuAnn works with individuals and organizations to do goal setting and planning. This is great for someone who needs help getting started. The S.Y.S.T.E.M. (Saving Yourself Time, Energy & Money) LuAnn uses can be used for any challenge or obstacle that you are facing. She says her coaching “comes from the heart with love and support, to help people make the changes they want in life.”



Changing the World One Girl at a Time

Print Email
Written by Terri Allred Photos by Dawn Sanborn Photography

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." –Margaret Mead

A small group of thoughtful, committed citizens is working to change the world in Rochester, one girl at a time. They are volunteers of Justice and Opportunity for Youth (JOY), a Rochester nonprofit working to inspire and empower young women to improve quality of life for themselves and their community.

JOY was founded in 2012 as an organization dedicated to helping Rochester youth who were considered high-risk for drug use, truancy, teen pregnancy and victimization. The volunteer staff and board of JOY believe that through community support, positive adult role models and transformational relationships, every child can create an upward trajectory for her life. Research on resiliency in children shows that sometimes the only difference between a child who “makes it” and one who doesn’t is the presence of a single supportive adult in their life. JOY volunteers aim to be that adult.


2016 was the year of changing faces. We saw celebrities plump their pouts, nip those noses and tuck tummies. Sometimes we noticed, and other times changes were done so well that it just looked like a fantastic Snapchat filter. Things aren’t slowing down in 2017, and we have the resources and expertise to make sure we look our best right here in Rochester.


I sat down with Dr. Jacobson of Jacobson Plastic Surgery—the first private practice surgery center in Rochester—to discuss facial injections. Dr. Jacobson has a unique approach to aesthetics and strives to be efficient and easy and go beyond all patient expectations. He says, “Really well-performed plastic surgery doesn’t look like it happened; you just look better.”

Aging gracefully on our own terms has never been easier. There are several options for people looking to boost their confidence and enhance their appearance. You can be in your 20s and want to slow down the aging process or in your 50s and want to add youthful volume. Plastic surgery enhances the features that already make us so uniquely beautiful. 


Our intention for I Am A Beautiful Rochester Woman this year is to help women feel beautiful. Rochester Women magazine partnered with Katie Kirckof, owner of Glam Beauty Lounge formerly BB Makeup and Cosmetic Bar, Dawn Sanborn Photography and Tracey McGuire Photography to give women mini-makeovers and their own photo shoots. We WILL share a Beautiful Rochester Woman in each issue of Rochester Women magazine throughout 2017.


Renee Thoreson is the daughter of Maxine and Orlo Thoreson. She says she was almost born in Honolulu, Hawaii, where her dad was stationed, but they made it back to Minnesota for her birth. She has lived in Minnesota since the early 1960s. 

Renee has been working for Mayo Clinic for 31 years. She is a prospect researcher in the Mayo Clinic Development Department. She says about her work, “I love research, writing and my wonderful
co-workers. I am inspired by the generosity of grateful patients who want to make things better for others seeking healing and answers.”      

Renee enjoys Norwegian artisan crafts of fine hardanger embroidery and rosemaling (see “Uff-da! The Sons of Norway” on page 19 of this issue). She finds pleasure in making Norwegian desserts and attending Scandinavian festivals. She loves singing and is a member of the choir at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church.



Uff-da! The Sons of Norway Cherishing the Past While Looking to the Future

Print Email
Written by Renee Thoreson Photography by Jorrie Johnson

Many who were raised in Scandinavian-settled areas of the country, such as the upper Midwest, are or have relatives who are, members of the Sons of Norway. The organization is not just for Norwegians; it’s for all who enjoy the Scandinavian culture.  


In January 1895, a small group of Norwegian immigrants living in Minneapolis formed a mutual assistance organization much like what they had known in Norway. Members paid a weekly fee and received support when need, illness or death made personal resources inadequate. The program became known as the Independent Order of the Sons of Norway. To qualify for membership, “One had to be male, either Norwegian or of Norwegian descent, give proof of being morally upright, in good health, capable of supporting a family, at least 20 years old and no more than 50.” 


Today, 8 million women in the United States are living with heart disease, and 35 million are at risk. According to American Heart Association, heart diseases cause one in three deaths in women.* Heart disease affects more women than men and is the leading cause of death in the nation. Fortunately, heart disease can often be prevented by making healthy choices and managing health conditions. During February—American Heart Month—and throughout the year, activities raise awareness and inform about the threat of heart disease.


Fifteen years ago, the Women’s Heart Clinic at Mayo Clinic in Rochester and WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease in Washington, D.C. developed an education and advocacy program for women living with heart disease. The WomenHeart Science and Leadership Symposium at Mayo Clinic is the only national volunteer training program that prepares women with heart disease to be community educators, advocates, spokespersons and support network coordinators. 


It’s no secret that the construction industry primarily consists of men. In fact, only 3 percent of construction workers today are women. But even with prominent workplace barriers like wage disparities, real and perceived bias and a general lack of respect for their abilities, women are becoming an increasingly recognized force in the construction industry—and they are encouraging young women to consider following in their steps.


According to the National Science Foundation, women make up half of the college-educated workforce in the United States but represent a mere 29 percent of science and engineering jobs. Although the number of women in science and engineering jobs has risen significantly in the past two decades, the gap between genders has narrowed only modestly.

Vanessa Hines works as a civil engineer for Widseth Smith Nolting and is hoping to see the gender gap continue to close. She has worked in the construction industry for about six years. “When I first started, I would walk into a meeting and scan the room,” Vanessa recalls. “I was typically the youngest and the only woman.” While it made her self-conscious at the time, Vanessa’s gotten over it. “I try to keep in mind that I am able and capable,” she explains, “and that is why I have the job I do.” 


Have you ever enjoyed a soothing soak in a hot tub or experienced the restorative heat from sitting in a sauna? Aside from the obvious appeal of warmth and relaxation, people enjoy using them together.

In recent years, saunas and hot tubs have expanded beyond health clubs, upscale hotels and chic spas. As saunas and hot tubs designed for home use have increased in popularity, enthusiasts have begun to realize the benefits of having access to a sauna or hot tub (or both) in the comfort of their own home.  


The word “sauna,” which means bath or bathhouse, is the only Finnish word to make its way into the English language. Frequently mispronounced, the correct pronunciation of the first syllable is “sow,” which rhymes with “wow.” Saunas have been in use in Finland for over 2,000 years, and sauna use in the United States has been traced back to 1638 in what is now known as Delaware. 



Remodeler's Corner: A Couple Opens Up Their Space Enjoying Their Eye-Catching Panoramic View

Print Email
Written by Bob Freund Photos by The Moments of Life Photography

Nancy Curry knew from her first look that walls would be coming down in their large townhouse with floor-to-ceiling windows. She and her husband, Paul, didn’t wait long after moving into their newly purchased home last April to start opening up the floor plan.

“I think we were in here four days, and Nancy put the (first) hammer into the wall,” Paul says. By the time their do-it-yourself wrecking crew finished demolition a few months later, four interior walls were demolished, and other outdated features from the late 1980s had disappeared.


In April 2016, the Currys moved into the 3,300-square-foot townhome in the Oak Cliff complex from a townhouse less than half the size. They had been shopping for space. “We couldn’t fit the entire family in our old house,” Nancy says. 


Page 22 of 75

Home | About Us | Advertise | Read | Connect | Subscribe | Submit | Contact Us

Rochester Women Magazine, Women Communications, L.L.C
PO Box 5986, Rochester, MN 55903, 507-259-6362

Copyright 2016