February 14, 2024

Just My Opinion - by Mary Kilen

When Holidays Collide
As I’m writing my column on Monday, Valentine’s Day is only two days away. The Easter season is also getting underway with Lent also starting on Wednesday. That made for some interesting times last week for Amanda and the kids. The kids attend Light of Christ Catholic School. For many Catholics they make the choice to give up something for Lent. That meant that the kids had their Valentine’s Day parties at school last Friday.
When we had a video call with Amanda and the kids last Wednesday, she was industriously working with the kids on their Valentine’s boxes. There was some challenge going on. Carter was creating a Patrick Mahomes box, having already created the curly hair using pipe cleaners and getting ready to work on the jersey on the box. His was the easy one. Jozie was creating a hot air balloon box. It had a basket at the bottom and she had decorated her lantern “hot air balloon” with a lot of different hearts and messages. The challenge was getting the lantern to connect to the paper straws that were connecting it to the basket. There was a lot of hot gluing going on and some muttering by Amanda. I said something about her at least working on them plenty early, after all Valentine’s wasn’t for a week. That’s when she pointed out that they had to be done for Friday because of Lent. Meanwhile, Abie’s class only decorates bags in class for Valentine’s Day. That meant he was a bit jealous about not getting to decorate a box. As a result, he was watching drawing videos and drawing quite a few different animals and sharing them with everyone.
As we approach Lent and Easter, I know I have used this one before, but several of my friends posted it on Facebook this last week and I remembered how much I liked it. Titled “Do You Want To Fast This Lent?” the post attributes the words of Pope Francis. Consider the following fasting options:
Fast from hurting words and say kind words.
Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude.
Fast from anger and be filled with patience.
Fast from pessimism and be filled with hope.
Fast from worries and have trust in God.
Fast from complaints and contemplate simplicity.
Fast from pressures and be prayerful.
Fast from bitterness and fill your hearts with joy.
Fast from selfishness and be compassionate to others.
Fast from grudges and be reconciled.
Fast from words and be silent so you can listen.

Off  To Winter Tournaments
Also as I’m writing my column, I’m contemplating everything I need to accomplish in the next few days.
State Wrestling starts on Thursday in Fargo, meaning that I need to leave some time on Wednesday. I’ve got quite a few things on my plate before I need and while I might be panicking a little bit right now, I know that it will get done. I’ll head back home on Saturday and have all day Sunday to get caught up before Monday hits and the girls’ region basketball tournament tips off in Minot.
Stanley is sending ten wrestlers to state, two girls and eight boys. New Town/Parshall is sending three wrestlers, one girl and two boys. Congratulations to all of them!
That’s a lot of wrestlers to try to get pictures of over the course of two days. Fortunately, I have a second to help me with the challenges if it gets to be too much, especially in those early rounds.
I love heading to State Wrestling. There is just something about the atmosphere in the Fargodome with all of the best wrestlers in the state and their fans in the stands. You can sense it when you walk in the door.
With the restructuring putting all of the individual matches on Thursday and Friday and team duals on Saturday, it has changed how I work and when I come home. It has also changed any free time I might have as both Thursday and Friday turn into really long days.
If you see me on Monday and I look exhausted, that’s why. I’m also a little concerned about how my foot will handle being on those floors for two solid days. Hopefully it doesn’t give me any trouble, but I guess we will see!

Game or Commercials?
Every year I have this debate when it comes to the Super Bowl. Again this year, I really didn’t have a dog in the fight, so I was just hoping for a good game, looking forward to some snacks and watching the commercials.
Thank goodness it turned out to be a competitive game. I felt like that for $7 million for a 30 second spot I would be more impressed with the commercials. There were some that I enjoyed, including the Dunkings commercial with Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck and friends. The Uber Eats forget something commercial was not only funny, but also featured some great cameos. I found myself watching the He Gets Us commercials again this year and being reminded about the need to care for others. And, of course, I was waiting for the Budweiser Clydesdales commercial. They certainly made me wait long enough, but I enjoyed it.
There were a few others that I liked, many of them that gave flashbacks to a younger time. There were a lot of them that I thought were just okay, but that doesn’t mean that someone else didn’t enjoy them.