Alexandra Floersch has worked for Forum Communications since February 2015. She is a content producer and photographer who enjoys writing about finance, fashion and home.
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PEORIA, Ariz. — You could call Joshua Becker an early pioneer of the minimalist movement. If you haven't read his books on minimalism, you might recognize him from Netflix's documentary "Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things." The Wall Street Journal bestselling author was born in Aberdeen, S.D., and attended junior high and high school in Wahpeton, N.D., from 1987 to 1992. Having written about minimalism for 10 years, Becker first saw America take hold of the idea when the recession hit in 2008.
FARGO — When Tim and Amy Paul first toured their current home in Moorhead, Minn., it wasn't love at first sight. The three-bedroom, 2.5 bath 1960s rambler-style home needed some TLC. While the previous owners had knocked out walls, giving way to a more open-concept layout on the main level, their Realtor mentioned an idea that quickly became the selling point: installing much-needed built-ins for the living room. "It wasn't a functional living room before," Amy says. "Where to put a couch was an issue. We knew before we bought it that built-ins were a must."
FARGO — "Contentment" isn't in our vocabulary. As millennials, we're not even really sure what it means ... at the surface, it's hard to define. How do you describe something so uniquely personal? How can it be explained? While some might equate it with safety, security or comfort, others envision it as just "being."
Shoulders tense from to-do lists. Hips cramped from stiff office chairs that agitate the lower back. The 8-to-5 workday can take a toll on the body. At the end of the day, many employees already feel the weight of eight hours spent sitting at a desk. "When you sit in the same position, all day every day, and it's not a natural position we were born to do, it can really do some negative things to your body," says Ashley Jonas, yoga instructor and director of teacher training programs at Mojo Fit Studios.
FARGO — With romantic crooning, affection in their eyes and undeniable respect for one another, head-turning duo Tim McGraw and Faith Hill convinced Fargoans that the love written about in country songs really exists at the Thursday, Aug. 24, "Soul2Soul The World Tour 2017" show at the Fargodome. The crowd softened, anticipation heightened and a timer ticked down from 60 seconds. Futuristic-themed audio and visuals stimulated eyes across the nearly full venue, surprising fans with a high-tech pop-esque stage setup rarely seen at a country concert.
FARGO — For those who haven't heard, the 2017 solar eclipse is heading this way and it's a big deal. With the path of totality spanning from Lincoln Beach, Ore., to Charleston, S.C., the closest drive to totality is Omaha, Ne. — approximately 425 miles by car. "This is probably the least effort necessary for seeing an eclipse in the past 38 years," says Bob King, an amateur astronomer, Astro Bob blog writer and photo editor at the Duluth News Tribune. "The last one was in '79."
It's easy to find an app for nearly everything. For the home specifically, such apps exist to design floor plans, find home inspiration, simulate paint colors and clean and organize rooms. "I think apps have turned our phones into tools," says 32-year-old Alexandra Young of West Fargo. "We constantly carry this tool in our purse or in our pocket that can make the whole process of owning a home, decorating a home, building a home — whatever you may be doing — more efficient."
FARGO — In the Midwest, we're used to being told we have a "Minnesoooota" accent, we dress like tourists and we're sickly sweet. It's ingrained in us from our childhood — that gene dubbed "Midwest nice." It's not until you visit other states and arrive home that you really witness the difference for yourself — an inherent collection of knee-jerking niceties, an almost involuntary reaction in hospitality.
Those minutes standing in front of your closet add up. Studies show women spend 16 minutes each weekday morning and 14 minutes on weekend mornings deciding what to wear, according to The Telegraph. Holidays, vacations and weekend nights tack on even more time. Perhaps even more alarming is that a study conducted by Elizabeth Bye and Ellen McKinney revealed that 85 percent of women own clothes that don't fit and the average person only wears about 20 percent of the clothing in their closet, according to Business Insider.
This week, we have work happy hour, a sushi date with an old friend, an evening baseball game with family, a birthday party at the cabin, a neighbor's wedding out of town, a fundraiser with our favorite organization and zero time for ourselves. Next week — well, next week looks about the same. As millennials, we've been reminded time and time again that we must be involved. It's our duty to volunteer in the community, support friends and family, practice lifelong learning and have calendars jam-packed with resume-boosting activities.