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 — 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.
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.
FARGO — While Easter or Spring Break may be a signal for many that it's time for renewal, area pagans and Wiccans recognize spring through ancient festivals during the spring equinox, sometimes called Ostara, and Beltane, the first day of May.
FARGO — "You throw like a girl." "You sound like a man." "You're the man." "You go, girl!" Gendered phrases like these are traded regularly, but the hidden judgements about them often go unnoticed or unexamined. "I think the anxiety of ourselves being judged by our gender never goes away," says 31-year-old transgender woman Rebel Marie, describing the high levels of anxiety she felt during the early years of her transition. "But I never could hide. I tried so hard to bury this."
FARGO — It's 10 p.m. on a Monday night. Many people in Fargo-Moorhead are winding down after a long day at work. But for 18 people at Dempsey's Public House, the night is just beginning as they try to make a few people laugh. Stand-up comedy doesn't just happen in the bright lights of the big city. It's alive and well in the heart of the Midwest.
FARGO — It's an inevitable fact of life for us all: death and taxes, and waste ... or if we're being informal, poop. We all cringe at the slightest mention of any bowel movement, but naturopathic doctors and holistic lifestyle advocates agree: poop needs to be talked about it, if we are serious about overall health. "No one wants to talk about pooping. It's a taboo thing," says Andrea Krejci Paradis, a yoga teacher and holistic life coach from Moorhead. "In our culture, it's defined as 'gross'."
FARGO — What makes a house a home? Last October, Jake and Jenessa Fillipi considered this question with their four kids: Ellise, Adrian, Alaina and Emmeline. "Our kids started to try to answer this question by rattling off answers like 'those comfy pillows, blankets, our couch and dining room table,'" Jenessa says. "All of those pieces that families who are moving from homelessness and may have experienced some trauma would not have."
FARGO — Before graduation, area teens have to say "yes to the dress" while parents hope the rising costs of prom won't break the bank or deplete their college fund. "Back in 2011 when my daughter attended her first prom, I was absolutely floored by the prices," says Audra Mehl about her oldest daughter Morganne's prom shopping experience. This year, Mehl's daughters Sophia and Karrly, both 16, will attend their first prom. "Morganne's prom dress her senior year in 2012 cost more than my wedding gown in 2013 when I married Karrly's dad, Matthew Mehl," she says.
In the year of #MeToo and #timesup, a painful but practical reminder emerged from an unexpected place: an old notebook full of supply-demand graphs. I recently recycled some old notebooks. As I flipped through pages of graphs, I recalled my professor's efforts to explain the supply-demand relationship, as students' eyes glazed over. • The law of demand states that if all other factors remain equal, the higher the price of the item, the less the people will demand that particular product.