Anna G. Larson
Anna G. Larson is a features reporter with The Forum who writes a weekly column featuring stylish people in Fargo-Moorhead. Larson graduated from North Dakota State University with a degree in journalism and joined The Forum in July 2012. She's a Fargo native who enjoys travel, food, baking, fashion, animals, coffee and all things Midwestern. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter: @msannagrace
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MOORHEAD - Elizabeth Tangquist rescued her mom's silver wedding platter from a box in the garage. She knew it'd make a shiny addition to her Scandinavian-inspired holiday decor. The vintage silver found a home next to a handmade twig star, antique Swedish ornaments and a black Swedish "Dala" horse. Tangquist carefully curates her holiday decor to represent her Scandinavian heritage and love of upcycled items. "When we were growing up, we didn't have as much at Christmastime, so my mom would take anything and just make it so magical and beautiful," she says. "It was fun and exciting.
FARGO - Most of the time, neighbors assume Mike and Renee Gravalin aren't home. The couple is usually in their basement, watching a movie on their 80-inch TV or entertaining guests at the pub-style cherry wood home bar. The lower level of the Gravalin home in south Fargo has become a gathering spot for friends and family since it was revamped last year by Studs to Rugs, a local company that remodels and finishes basements. The Gravalins decided to create their ideal basement after water damage forced them to strip the space.
FARGO - Lauren and Robby Trefethren's home is a Pinterest board realized. "I incorporate a lot of family traditions and travel.
FARGO - Instead of spring cleaning, think spring crafting. The spring crafts we rounded up are affordable, easily customizable and add a splash of spring to your abode. Succulents in painted pots are modern and colorful with the addition of colored aquarium gravel. A whimsical mobile becomes a personalized creation by using colors to match home décor, proving that they're not just for nurseries.
WEST FARGO - The 4,800-square-foot modern rambler at 943 Mulberry Lane here is waiting for shoes and coats in the mudroom and family photos on the wall.
FARGO - I like to display fresh, cheery flowers in my home year round. But sometimes, the gorgeous stems quickly wilt. With a dose of flower food, cut blooms stay alive longer, offering their beauty for a few more days. The packets that typically come with flowers work well, but you can make a similar mixture at home if you run out of the packets. The sugar feeds the flowers, while the citrus acidifies the water and bleach keeps bacteria at bay.
FARGO – If hotdish is on the potluck table, it’s made with gourmet cheese and fresh herbs. Modern potluck gatherings have panache, and they’re a popular way for friends to celebrate togetherness while enjoying good food. But that’s not to say traditional church basement potlucks (Tater Tot hotdish? Jell-O? Cheez Whiz on buns?) have lost their place. Potlucks are just evolving, says Ellen Shafer, who regularly hosts them. “It’s such a familiar word up here. Really, is that a trend? I don’t think it ever left,” says the Fargo woman.
Give thanks in a new way on Turkey Day. Create a “Thankful Jar” now and invite friends and family to write what they’re grateful for this holiday season. Set out a mason jar or fishbowl with strips of paper. Add to it daily or weekly, and on Thanksgiving, read the thankful thoughts out loud. Try to guess who wrote each piece of gratitude. Keep the practice going year-round, too.
FARGO – I’m fairly certain two of my apartment windows are frozen shut, but I’m too scared to check. Arctic air made its appearance, and my windows are covered in frost. In the past, I’ve taken a hair dryer to the situation, but I found a safer solution when I was clicking through Pinterest. Rub interior windows with a mixture of two tablespoons salt and one gallon of warm water.
FARGO – Grace Nelson, 89, whispers to 92-year-old Irene Klenow. "You look really pretty," she says. Klenow is wearing a colorful, feathery hat and a brown fur stole. She poses for the camera.