What did you do this summer?

What did you do this summer? It’s the time of year when teachers are asking students this age-old question. 

I always try to make sure my children have some summer stories to share with their classmates in the fall. At the end of June, we took a road trip to Colorado to visit family and friends. For three nights we stayed so deep in the Cache la Poudre River Canyon that we didn’t have cell phone reception. 

I don’t know if going without phones or computers was harder on me, my mom or my children. We survived that trip and three more days in August without technology (running water, electricity or wine) in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. That was a bit rougher and, no doubt, made us tougher. 

While growing up in northern Minnesota, most of the time I spent with my dad was fishing, hunting, gardening or outdoors. When I became a teenager, I wanted to spend more time with my girlfriends and doing other sports (such as chasing boys). Now, I regret not sticking with the outdoors sports. I hope to get back into them and maybe even meet an outdoorsman. My friend Alison Streiff also lived in northern Minnesota when she was younger but didn’t get into hunting and fishing until she got divorced. She hunts and fishes and is teaching her daughters to embrace the outdoors too (page 22). Alison’s daughters should have lots of stories to tell their classmates when they are in school this fall.





Far from the call of the wild, three teams of middle and high school girls from the Rochester area will be telling their classmates about participating in the Technovation Challenge finals in San Francisco in June. Read about the teams and the international Technovation Challenge, a computer coding competition for girls, on page 11.

Before summer is over, get outdoors and make some memories. Head out to Squash Blossom Farm on a Sunday afternoon in September (page 20) and go on the Fall Showcase of Homes or Remodelers Tour (page 30-31). In October, visit a fall art festival or studio tour (page 52), learn how to Make Your Own Wine (page 24) and grill pizza! (page 28) at home. 

The Libra (my birthday is in October) in me says to balance going back to school (indoors) with time outdoors this fall. By the time the holidays roll around, we will have lots of stories to tell.