Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

My Christmas gift wish list December 22, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 11:27 PM
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IS MINE THE ONLY husband who leaves his Christmas gift shopping until nearly the last minute? I mean, there it was Wednesday evening and he was asking what I want for Christmas.

Honey, if you’re reading this, maybe just click off the computer screen right now. Or, go ahead, keep reading. I simply find it amusing how you dally and dawdle with this Christmas gift buying nearly every year.

I suppose, in your defense, I should tell my readers that you asked several weeks ago for a wish list from me and I failed to deliver.

So Wednesday night I pulled my list from the e-mails I’d sent our daughters and then scratched a few more items onto the bottom: a telephoto or macro lens for my camera and that thing like the professional photographers have with the cord that you can attach to your camera to click the shutter button when you have your camera on a tripod.

I handed the list to the husband and explained about the camera items and other stuff I really want like a new living room chair, a different kitchen sink to replace the vintage 70s brown one (or an entire kitchen re-do), a new boxspring and mattress, new kettles to replace the vintage 70s brown ones and, oh, maybe earrings.

I then qualified that I really didn’t expect him to buy me anything for my Canon EOS 20-D SLR camera because that would kind of be like me walking into an auto parts store and trying to purchase a tool he wants for Christmas (which I did because he wrote down precisely, exactly, what he wanted; he knows because he saw my entry in the checkbook—I am not sneaky, not at all).

By the looks of the small, flat, wrapped box the spouse slid under the Christmas tree, it appears I am not getting a camera lens, chair, sink, mattress, kettles or kitchen re-do.

I’d put my money on earrings.

However, Santa (not my husband), if you’re reading this, I have one other wish: for families everywhere to truly appreciate, value, respect, listen to and love each other this Christmas and into the new year. Amen.

READERS, WHAT’S your wish for Christmas this year whether practical and personal or more of a prayer?

© Copyright 2011 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

 

Downtown Faribault in December in black & white

The former Security Bank building anchors a corner of Central Avenue in downtown Faribault.

PHOTOS DEVOID of distracting color possess a certain surreal, dreamy quality and a vintage feel that have always appealed to me.

Some of the best images I’ve seen hearken from years ago which just goes to prove that technology doesn’t always equate better results.

While filing through photos I shot in historic downtown Faribault on Saturday afternoon and evening, I decided to play with my photo editing tools and desaturate several images. I liked the results so much that I stripped every frame of color.

The results, I think, impress even more upon the viewer the history of this early Minnesota community that stretches back to its founding by fur trader Alexander Faribault in 1852.

We’re a city rich in history with 40 properties on the National Register of Historic Places.

With that perspective, please join me on a quick photo tour of the downtown area. Certainly much more comprises our downtown than what you see in the seven images here.

I invite you to explore on your own, to immerse yourself in the history that defines Faribault.

Historic buildings along Central Avenue.

Dandelet Jewelry occupies the former 1882 Dandelet Dry Goods building, which was renovated in 1985.

A scene from the movie, "Grumpy Old Men," was shot in the former drug store to the right in this image. Today the building houses a pawn shop.

A holiday display window at Erickson Furniture, in business since 1956 and located along Fifth Street Northwest just a block off Central Avenue. Erickson Furniture won first place in the Main Street window decorating contest with its suspended green chairs, holiday ornaments and lights.

Holiday decorations in a business window along Third Street Northwest just off Central.

A sign in the window of Burkhartzmeyer Shoes, a third-generation family-owned shoe store founded in 1949.

CLICK HERE to read a previous post about Faribault’s historic downtown.

Copyright 2011 Audrey Kletscher Helbling