Happy New Year
From Esther Murray Fleming (65): Flint, MI



Hi Blog

Just thought I would wish everyone a Happy and prosperous New Year., from the Fleming Clan.
Love Esther
From Lynn Halvorson Otto (75): Boonton, NJ
Gary and Bernadette, Happy New Year to you all! We have been so very blessed in 2010 and I’m sure God has great plans for all of us in 2011 and beyond. You and Bernadette are a great blessings to all of us alumni from Dunseith, ND. I hope all appreciate all the time and effort it takes to do this blog. All our best, Lynn and Greg Otto and family
Lynn, Doing this Blog gives me something meaningful to wake up to each morning. It also keeps me connected to the good ole USA and the wonderful folks from Dunseith and the surrounding areas. It takes time, but I’m retired, so I can choose to use my time any way I choose. You know when I worked I enjoyed my job. When one retires you have to find ways to fill the social void that comes along with being retired. It took about a year for me to feel comfortable being retired without the pressures of my job hanging over head. Now, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard seldom comes to mind. I learned the skills of the trade with what I’m doing with this Blog from my working years at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. Gary
Reply from Trish Larson Wild (73): FORT COLLINS, CO

Happy New Year Everyone! Gary your photo cracked me up – I loved the plate of dessert leading to the New Year resolution that we all make at this time of year. Very funny.

I am in California now, and write this from my North Dakota girlfriend’s house in Sacramento. We are so glad we are not dealing with your weather in NODAK, but thanks for the humorous stories that get shared so readily in that climate. We cooked and ate and drank champagne and laughed about old stories we were in together. Yup, I love my North Dakota friends!
Sending you all best wishes for a New Year full of whatever you ask for. As they say, be careful what you ask for….
Thanks Gary!
Trish Wild
The Equine Nomad
John Awalt Memories
From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

There are a couple memories I have of John Awalt, Sr. that might stir some memories from his family. John was always doing something with wood, whether it was carpentry or creative woodworking. I built the cabinets for our house and wanted a nice valence for the area above the sink, between the cupboard cabinets. I drew a pattern and headed down to see John. I showed him my design and he said it was good and he would have no problem making me one. A few days later he called me and said to come and get it. Of course I had to have coffee and cookies with he a Gertrude before I left. When we were finished, I took out my billfold and asked what I owed him for such a nice piece of woodwork? He said, “You don’t owe me anything. It’s my part of your new house on our old place.” He wouldn’t take a dime.

When he was retiring, Dad bought his temporary workshop that sat west of Dale’s truck stop and we moved it to the farm for a shop building. John kind of went with the project and helped me put in the overhead door and other jobs. It was working with him that I learned a lot of things about carpentry. Between John and Bill Peterson, I could find out nearly anything I needed to know when I was building or remodeling. For those who don’t know, Bill is John’s nephew. While working on Dad’s shop, I also heard many of the cliches John used and I bet his kids remember. It was the first time I heard anybody say, “I cut it off twice and it’s still too short.” John also had his own little saying. Most people say, “Holy Moses”–not John–he turned that around to, “Moldy Hoses”. There were a couple ‘others’ that I will just keep in MY memory. Once he asked me to bring down a load of old barnyard manure for his garden. I had some that had been piled for many years and I had used it on my own garden and it really worked well, so I loaded a big load and took it to John. He wasn’t home when I got there so I just shoveled it off and spread it around evenly on his garden. He came home just when I finished and when he looked at it he got a strange look on his face. He said, “I don’t want to seem ungrateful, but that’s going to be way to rich and my spuds will be all scabby.” I felt kind of bad, but I told him I didn’t think so because it worked well on my own garden. Later that summer I was sitting at the counter at Dale’s and John came in and wrapped his arm around my neck and said, “I just went out to the garden and dug some of my spuds and they are the biggest and best that I’ve ever grown in that garden. You really know your s__t!” I guess that was a compliment! Thanks Gary!


This is kind of a nice “Happy New Year” picture with the gals head gear that I thought I throw in with today’s blog.
Evelyn and Alex Todd are the couple in the picture with us. They recently moved here from San Diego. Alex is retired from the Marine Corps and Law enforcement (Sheriffs department). Evelyn is retired from the “Navy Federal Credit Union”.