Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Grassroots patriotism July 9, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:00 AM
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EACH TIME I TRAVEL through Sleepy Eye, I notice this old house situated on a corner along U.S. Highway 14 east of downtown.

A quick snapshot of a patriotic house in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota.

A quick snapshot of a patriotic house in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota.

I could lament at the need for a little exterior TLC.

But rather, I focus on the patriotism, that always-there “WE SUPPORT OUR TROOPS” sign.

Within the walls of this old house lives someone who’s perhaps served or has a loved one serving our country or who’s simply just proud of our military. Maybe all three.

I love the genuineness of this patriotic display. I imagine the homeowner shopping for the bunting and the flags and those little whirligigs.

I imagine, too, the long search, or maybe even a special order placement, for that can’t miss royal blue carpet.

This old house shows me patriotism at its grassroots basic. From the heart. From the home.

© Copyright 2014 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

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18 Responses to “Grassroots patriotism”

  1. Dan Traun Says:

    That royal blue carpet really makes the entry “pop.” That home does have some interesting character – I’ve never seen an awning like that over a bay window. Interesting.

    • I didn’t notice the awning until you mentioned it. I wish I would have a better shot of the entire house. But this is one of those drive-by shots. If we stopped every time I wanted a photo, we would never reach our destination.

      • Dan Traun Says:

        We’ve never not reached a destination, but we’ve arrived several hours later 🙂 I typically tack on a few extra hours when we travel long distances as we usually stumble upon something interesting.

      • That’s a great idea to tack on extra time. Sadly our time is often limited and we don’t have the luxury of slow travel, unless we are out for a leisurely Sunday afternoon drive.

  2. Beth Ann Says:

    I can see why this house catches your eye. I love the displays of patriotism that I see across our country. It always warms my heart to know that others are proud of their country, too.

  3. Great Capture! There needs to be some flower pots on those black plant hangers – look a little barren without. Happy Hump Day 🙂

  4. Norma Says:

    Not only do I love the patriotism, but I think the house itself is fascinating. I really love old houses, and wonder about it’s history.

  5. Jackie Says:

    Love the little roof and detail over the bump out window, and the love for patriotism goes without saying for this home owner. I have never been as far west as sleepy eye on Hwy 14…. I’ve got some exploring still to do 🙂

    • Oh, Jackie, you need to travel at least as far west as Walnut Grove on Hwy 14. Are you a fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House book series? I rank them as among my favorite books. Anyway, Walnut Grove holds an outdoor pageant based on Laura’s books and has many other activities going on. Your grandkids would love the Family Festival at the city park. This year 10 of the stars from the TV series will be in Walnut Grove on the last weekend in July.

      Go west, young woman, I say.

  6. Michael G Says:

    Hi everyone. I don’t know quite how I stumbled upon this blog, but I wanted to mention that I actually know the people who live in this house. They are the sweetest people you could ever hope to know.

    They are two sisters and their brother, all three retired. After their parents passed away some time ago they remained together living and working in the community. One of the sisters was my nanny growing up. She and the other sister also were our maids (I guess I grew up with money).

    Their father had served in the armed forces, either in WW2 or Korea. I don’t recall which. They are very proud of their country and their community. Their house could massively use TLC inside and out. However their love for God, country, community, and family is the purest around.

    Next time you pass through I strongly recommend knocking on their front door and saying hello to them. Don’t worry, they don’t have any guns. They don’t have a mean bone in their bodies. They will however talk your ears off about anything and everything

    • Michael, thank you for telling me about the people who live in this patriotic-themed house. I can tell how deeply you care for them and what wonderful people they are. I expect they are well-loved in Sleepy Eye. Has anyone in town (a church perhaps) ever considering doing something for them, like painting the house exterior or helping with other home repairs?


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