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Trading Up: Time Trading offers a chance to exchange services
Do you remember when you were growing up when someone said that if you couldn’t pay the bill at a restaurant you’d have to wash dishes? Now there is a way to obtain and exchange services without spending any money for the tab, and it’s right here in the Med City. Plus, there are more options than washing the dishes for a meal. ...More »
Let's get canning: A look at canning from a long-time canner and a novice

Produce is ripening up in gardens everywhere, in some cases with more bounty than gardeners may know what to do with. There can only be so many salads, veggie-loaded sandwiches and other fresh goodies in a week. Canning can be an excellent way to enjoy extra produce on chillier, more snow-covered days.
A long-held tradition for many farm families, canning saw a resurgence during the recession. Time will tell if interest in the preservation method stays or wanes, but one factor on canning’s side is growing consumer curiosity about what goes into processed foods and where food comes from.
Avoiding added salt is one of the reasons Ruth Grandbois cans. Grandbois has been canning for more than 50 years. The 73-year-old rural St. Charles resident started canning on her own when she was 20, but picked up her knowledge over years of watching her mother can at home on the farm. ...More »
Mystery of yoga: A teacher and a student on the power of yoga
Defining yoga — an instructor’s perspective
Trying to define the practice of yoga isn’t an easy thing to do.
“It’s very much based in the experience,” says Sara Atkinson, owner of Breathe Yoga Studios in Rochester. “It’s kind of like trying to explain what love feels like. It’s difficult to find the words.”
In the broadest sense, yoga is the ancient practice of training your mind, body and breathing in the quest for inner peace, good health and greater relaxation.
But, like the ancient practice of love, its many nuanced definitions are only accurate to a point, Atkinson says. The true essence has to be experienced to be known.
So, what is yoga exactly?
“That’s the magic question,” she says. “It’s about an experience of movement we take the body through.” ...More »
Scrub-a-dub-dub: Easy, DIY alternatives to microbead scrubs

Sugar. We love it and crave it but have no doubt that eating too much of it comes at a cost. And yet here’s a bit of delicious news: there are ways to use the sweet temptress that actually can enhance your overall health and well-being rather than sabotage it. Guilt be gone, homemade sugar scrubs for your skin and body will make you feel good about your sugar consumption in ways you never have before.
Used as a natural beauty aid to exfoliate your skin, sugar scrubs are mild and help revive your skin, the body’s largest organ, by deeply cleaning its pores. Plus, making your own sugar scrubs is simple. Combine a bit of sugar with a few other ingredients and your skin will delight in the sweet reward. ...More »
Growing old school: Using native planting in your home landscape design
As we expand in population and the borders of our cities edge out, we are losing our native prairie lands and plants. But some locals are choosing to plant more native plants in their home landscape designs.
“The whole idea of using natives is appealing to the majority of newer people coming into Rochester,” says Peter Carr, a landscape designer at Sargent’s Gardens. Carr says that natives are great for their variances in heights, colors and textures throughout the growing season. But not everyone is so easily convinced that natives are the way to go.
“Most people want what they know, they are afraid to try something new,” says Carr. “Even though this is as old school as it comes, to a lot of people this is a new idea and we’re just trying to go back to go back to the roots of the way we did things before we were even around.” ...More »
Reel food: Food-focused films provide plenty to chew on
It’s always interesting to consider the messages served up by films that take a look at food in America — from how we meet the needs of the hungry to the nutritional value of what we eat. Thoughtful and often eye-opening, these films have plenty to say.
Food for everyone at the ‘Table’
“A Place at the Table” is a recent documentary about hunger in America.
Fifty million Americans, including one in four children, aren’t sure where their next meal is coming from. Due in major part to lingering damage from the Great Recession, those numbers have not abated. “Table” puts human faces — including a single mom and two grade school kids — on cold data. And the film puts the lie to popular beliefs about the problem of “food insecurity” in a country blessed with bountiful crops. ...More »
Barrel-making is an art: A look into how wine barrels are crafted by hand
Francis Durand has been making wine vessels for more than 25 years. He traveled to Minnesota from California to showcase his skill at a barrel-making and toasting demonstration for the Minnesota Grape Growers Association. 
   Durand is master cooper for Radoux USA. Radoux is a top cooperage in the world, based in France with a California outpost. Durand himself is French and started off as an assistant cooper at the firm’s French headquarters.   
Radoux USA creates 60 barrels per day, and its parent company pushes out 250 daily. While most are shipped in August, the cooperages work on the barrels year-round because otherwise they wouldn’t be able to keep up with demand. ...More »
Taking the first steps: How to prepare for longer runs and triathalons
In the first-ever marathon, Greek messenger Pheidippides ran from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to proclaim the Greek victory over the Persians. According to legend, he completed his first run of 26.2 miles, gave the good news, then collapsed and died on the spot.
Whether you plan to run a full marathon, half marathon, 10K or 5K race, or participate in a triathlon, the right training can help you avoid Pheidippides’ fate.
Evan Spee, manager at Running Room in Rochester, says there are ongoing classes at the store for runners no matter what distance they plan to attack. Currently, the classes for 5K races are ongoing. Classes for half or full marathons will be offered later in the summer. ...More »
Growing tall and strong: Fresh with Edge utilizes unique growing methods
It’s hard out there for a pioneer.
Not only is Fresh With Edge one of a few Minnesota companies growing plants using the burgeoning hydroponic and aquaponic methods, but it is doing so vertically and is one of only a handful of producers across the United States selling the plants live, unpicked at the farmers market.
    Chris and Lisa Lukenbill started Fresh With Edge in early 2013 hoping to contribute something toward the local, sustainable agriculture conversation.
“We wanted to find something more we could do to support local agriculture than just going to the farmers market; something where we could attempt to find or make our own market instead of trying to compete,” Chris Lukenbill says.
    Some friends knew a little about hydroponics and Chris learned enough from them to want to start researching the growing technique on his own. ...More »
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