April Knutson is lifestyle-focused journalist producing stories for the Forum News Service about people, health, community issues, and services. She earned her degree in both English Literature and Mass Communications. After working as a digital marketing specialist and web design consultant for a few years, she joined Forum Communications in 2015. She grew up on a farm near Volga, S.D. Follow her on Twitter @april_knutson.
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FARGO — As the final bell rings for the 2017-18 school year, parents and children are looking for more freedom. Parental concerns about safety often trump kids' desire to care for themselves. But during the summer, other economic factors might persuade parents to let their children stay home alone, potentially saving thousands of dollars on child care.
FARGO — Whether you were inspired by locals who participated in 30 Days of Biking or just finally gave up on patching your tire after the zillionth time of watching that YouTube tutorial, it's time for a new bike. But where to start?
FARGO — I've come to terms with many unfamiliar phrases — first with gender neutral-pronouns, then with gendered phrases, through conversations with transgender women. This month, I spoke with two North Dakotan couples who shared their own "coming to terms" story. Although each relationship is different, these two couples have several things in common. Both met each other in high school while one partner was presenting as male; both are married and celebrate double-digit anniversaries this year; and both stayed together while one partner transitioned from male to female.
In 2018, farmers markets in the Red River Valley have grown to include more locations, entertainment and produce. Consider visiting one of the six area markets this summer.
FARGO — Once a person reaches a certain age, homemade macaroni Mother's Day cards fade and traditions of sharing quality time take shape. We start to siphon what wisdom we should have followed in youth to forge new traditions of family meals or springtime activities like gardening or landscaping. Locals highlight some of these traditions and share how they will be celebrating their mom before creating their own motherhood experiences. Megan Hineman, a 29-year-old due to have a baby girl this month, says the day holds a special significance.
FARGO — When you were a kid, all it took was begging your mom for permission to jump on your bike to claim the open road forever with your friends ... at least until dinner. But as you age, your biking expertise becomes riddled with potholes. What do you wear? Where should you ride? What do you need to know to be safe? Fear not — avid cyclists offer their tested tips and techniques to fill any information gaps.
MOORHEAD — In the Midwest, our lives can often revolve around the growing season, even within the city's limits. Urban dwellers watch for grocery store sales, roadside corn stands and double-check their sprinkler system for the greener grass to come. But this summer, area organizations and businesses are inviting locals to develop a deeper connection with food through community gardening projects and events.
FARGO — Despite spring's late arrival, many have taken the 30 Days of the Biking (30DOB) pledge, a challenge to discover the joy of commuting by bike to any destination, during any kind of weather. Markus Cramton, a 35-year-old cyclist in Fargo, has been participating in 30DOB for more than five years after learning about it from his brother in Ramsey, Minn.
FARGO — I always thought I understood how to conserve resources, being mindful of how much my daily existence weighed on Mother Earth. What I learned while tracking my garbage output is that I have so much to still learn about sustainable living — and that we all throw out much more than we think. Inspired by zero-waste activist Lauren Singer, a New York-based blogger, I set a goal to track the amount of garbage I threw away during the month of April. What followed was a lesson on how easy it is to place living a sustainable life at the bottom of the priority list.
"No." Full stop. (My first draft of this column included "I'm sorry but no..." A couple of fingernails became shorter and sharper before my ring finger found the delete key.) "No" needs no explanation. But we all struggle with it. "No" is gender blind, and yet the anxiety it generates is gender fluid. As highly social creatures, our subconscious betrays us, constantly looking for verbal and nonverbal clues of acceptance.