Page 1


12 Contributors

40 Photography

16 Calendar

44 Classic

& Cozy

46 Where

To Shop


We Love

Winter dressing offers the best of both worlds

24 Paws


24th Annual Paws Walk “Stride for Strays”

26 ZOOlebration!

The Red River Valley Zoo’s third annual ZOOlebration

28 ShareHouse, Jeans & Jerseys

30 The


Role Of A Lifetime

Theatre B tackles life and death through a unique collaboration

36 Painting

With Light

The photography of Inna Sumra

48 Taking Vision Correction To The Next Level At Bagan Strinden Vision, new technology gives almost everyone the opportunity to see better without eyeglasses

50 Entreprenual


MSUM certificate program helps local entrepreneur with start-up business


54 Not Leaving Her Health To Chance

How an annual mammogram caught one woman’s cancer at just the right time

66 Peace

On Earth

Holiday Home Showcase

72 A

Warm Welcome

56 Six

to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties

Quality Life, a mental health and wellness center, specializes in treating children, adolescents and adults with ADHD

80 Theatre

Things People Wish They Had Known Before Making Funeral Arrangements 76 Fostering A Full Life Janelle Steinberg reigns as 58 Three Signs Your Child Mrs. North Dakota Might Have ADHD

60 Dermatologist

Uses Laser Technology To Remove Tattoos

64 Preparing


Your Home For



Connecting with the community for 100 years

82 Cover


Looking Forward



EDITORS IN CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHY Mike Sherman Ockhardt Photography Becky Sherman Elena K Photography Ben Nash Photography PROOFING EDITOR 5Foot20 Design Lounge Amy Peterson Nate Mickelberg Ande Sailer GRAPHIC DESIGN Rick Westra Sydney Schermerhorn Legacy Photography Wolff Photography ADVERTISING Timeless Images Photography Mike Sherman Thuen Studios 701-306-5119 Rachel Torgerson Photography Debbie Trombley Ashley Oberholtzer Photography 701-729-1910 Studio A Photo Haney's Photography FIND US Scherling Photography 701-306-5119 Golden Veil Photography Mike Smith Limelite Photography Mandey Marie Photography Karensa Tischer Photography READ IT ONLINE Area Woman is a proud member of the Fargo/Moorhead Chamber of Commerce. It is published bi-monthly by Area Woman Publishing, LLC and printed in the U.S.A. Š2014 Area Woman Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission from AW. Area Woman is a trademark registered at U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Area Woman Publishing assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts or photographs and does not necessarily agree with content or advertising presented.

IImage Provided By Ben Nash Photography

PUBLISHER Area Woman Publishing, LLC



WOMEN’S RESOURCES Start designing

your new home!



is the winner of the 2014 Autumn House Prize for Creative Nonfiction. Her first book, "A Sliver of Shade: Six Years in a Zambian Village," is forthcoming, spring 2015, from Autumn House Press. She is the runner-up of the 23rd Annual Missouri Review Jeffry E. Smith Editors' Prize and


has been living in the Fargo/Moorhead area since 1997 when she began her freshman year at Concordia College. While unsure of how she would use her degree in English Literature and Communications, she found a job after graduation that allowed her to put her new-found

her work has been anthologized in "Best Spiritual Writing 2012" (Penguin Books) and in "Becoming: What Makes a Woman" (University of Nebraska, 2012). Her essays have been published in The Missouri Review, Gettysburg Review, River Teeth, Pinch, and Image.

knowledge to good use and helped her pay off those pesky student loans. Though she is originally from Long Lake, MN, a western suburb of Minneapolis, she, along with her husband and their four children, is proud to call Fargo home.

ALICIA UNDERLEE NELSON is the creator of, a website that showcases what’s beautiful and what’s next in North Dakota and beyond. She frequently travels across the region to cover the arts, culture, shopping, events and fashion of the Upper Midwest. She is a local correspondent for Reuters and her work has been published in numerous magazines and newspapers in the region.

She is also a featured writer for several online publications and a well-traveled public speaker. Alicia is a graduate of Minnesota State University Moorhead. She loves traveling, reading, experimenting in the kitchen and shopping at estate sales. Alicia lives in West Fargo with her husband and their extremely busy toddler.


is an editor, writer, classical musician, and the office manager of Ringstrom Law, a criminal defense firm in Moorhead. The owner of Content & Contour, LLC, an editing and writing service, Gwen also teaches french horn at the University of


North Dakota and plays in the Duluth Symphony, the Dakota Brass, and the Sub Zero Brass. She is a co-author of the travel memoir The Walk Across North Dakota, to be published by the NDSU Institute for Regional Studies Press in 2015.

Learn more about these talented women and how you can get involved at


Gearing up for the holiday season

often means filling up the spaces on your calendar. Be sure to check out the variety of events posted on the area calendar and add some of the concerts, plays, fundraisers, and other holiday events to your calendar spaces. And keep up on what's been going on recently in the FM area as you read through the rest of this edition of Area Life. Image provided by Ben Nash Photography.

CALENDAR OF E VENT S Note: All events are subject to change. Confirm dates and times before attending.


Attire to Inspire: Fashion Show

Attire to Inspire is a fashion-show fundraiser where all the proceeds benefit Dress for Success Red River Valley programs including our Professional Women's Group, Suiting Program and our career workshops! Tickets available at Dress for Success at, keyword: Attire to Inspire. $20 General Admission, $60 VIP with runway seating & Swag Bag 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Courtyard Marriott Moorhead 701.478.8076

October 4

Feed My Starving Children Mobile Pack TM

Feed My Starving Children MobilePack events


allow people across the United States to pack lifegiving meals. In 2014, our MobilePack events are set to produce 60 million meals.

First Assembly 3401 25th St. S., Fargo

October 4

Angel of Hope Memorial Service

The Annual Candlelight Memorial Service will be held at the Angel of Hope statue for all parents and families who have lost a child. Invitees can bring a white flower to place at the statue in memory of loved ones. 7 p.m.

Island Park Fargo

October 8

Menopause the Musical

COME JOIN OUR SISTERHOOD! Four women at a lingerie sale with nothing in common but a black lace bra AND memory loss, hot flashes, night sweats, not enough sex, too much sex and more! This hilarious musical parody set to classic tunes from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s will have you cheering and dancing in the aisles! It's the Hilarious Celebration of Women and The Change!® 7:30 p.m.

FARGODOME 1800 N. University Drive, Fargo

October 11

Awesome Art Afternoon

Love art but hate the mess? Bring your child to these interactive art programs to have fun while

building a variety of take home projects. All creative materials will be provided. This program is free thanks to Xcel Energy Foundation. Adult supervision required. Fee: Free Time: 1 - 3 p.m.

Roger D. Johnson Rec Center 1104 2nd Ave. S. | 499-7788

October 11 Fargo Walk

Bouncy houses, face painting, awards and much more! Registration starts at 9 a.m. Walk kicks off at 10 a.m.

Scheels Arena

October 23 Dierks Bentley

Riser Tour 2014 featuring Dierks Bentley and very special guests Randy Houser and Cassadee Pope 7:30 p.m.

FARGODOME 1800 N. University Drive, Fargo

October 24

Halloween Open Gym

Let us take care of your children one evening while you relax and catch up with family and friends. Children will enjoy gymnastics, floor games, climbing the rock-wall, dancing, obstacle courses, trampoline time, play time in our foam pit and much more. Open to children ages 5 to 14 years old. $10.00 per child/ $5.00 per additional sibling. 7 - 8:30 p.m.

TNT Kid's Fitness and Gymnastics 2800 Main Ave. S. Fargo

October 24 & 25

Altrusa/YWCA Baby Shower

Members will sit inside Kmart and collect baby items for the YWCA Emergency Shelter. 5 - 9 p.m.

Kmart on South University

Are you planning or attending an upcoming event? Submit local events online at






CALENDAR OF E VENT S Note: All events are subject to change. Confirm dates and times before attending.

October 25

October 29

Everyone’s favorite public television and radio network is celebrating 50 years of service to the prairie region! Enjoy a wine tasting, gourmet dinner, and live dancing music at this black-tie optional gala.

The D2K Tour is in support of Cher’s Warner Bros. Records album Closer to the Truth which includes the No. 1 Dance hit “Woman’s World.” The tour has received rave reviews across the country. 7:30 p.m.

Prairie Public’s 50th Golden Gala

Ramada Plaza Suites 5:30 p.m. to Midnight

Tickets are available at

October 25

Moonlight Monster Mash

Fee: $3.00. Vampires, ghosts and skeletons welcome. All participants are encouraged to wear a costume and dance the night away. Explore the haunted attic, play ghoulish games, and trick-ortreat for some spooky snacks. Enjoy a live DJ all night long and a spooktacular entertainment show at 7:30 pm. Parental supervision required. Time: 6:30 - 9 p.m.

Fargo Youth Center 2500 18th St. S. | 499-7788.


FARGODOME 1800 N. University Drive, Fargo

Courts Plus 3491 S. University Drive | 237-4805

November 1st Beginning Spinning

October 31

Haunted Moorhead Center Mall

Bring your ghosts and goblins to Moorhead Center Mall for an evening of trick or treating, scary and not so scary spaces, story time, crafts, activities, and more! Sponsored by Moorhead Parks and Recreation, Moorhead Library, and Moorhead Center Mall. 4 – 10 p.m.

Moorhead Center Mall 218.299.5340

Learn to hand spin! Test out various wheels and drop spindles, spinning fiber included all for $25.00. Info at 10:00 am till noon

The Wood and The Wool 17061 54th St. SE, Kindred 58051 signup at dakotafibermill@gmail or call/text 701-238-4002

Nobember 1 & 2

The Merry Wives of Windsor

October 31

Community Halloween Carnival

Celebrating its 8th year, this free carnival for the



FM community is a mix of carnival games and inflatables form Games Galore. All youth will receive a free Halloween bag for attending, while supplies last. Fee: Free 3:30 - 5:30 p.m.

The Fargo-Moorhead Opera presents a classic tale by Otto Nicolai based on the works of William Shakespeare. November 1, 2014 - Doors at 6:30 p.m., pre-opera talk at 7 p.m., show at 7:30 p.m. November 2, 2014 – Doors at 1 p.m., pre-opera talk at 1:30 p.m., show at 2 p.m.

Reineke Festival Concert Hall, NDSU

November 1 & 2


The 28th Annual Homes for the Holidays showcases F-M area homes in fabulous holiday décor by local designers. Sponsored by NDSU Alpha Gamma Delta Alumnae, Homes for the Holidays will give a share of proceeds and all donations for the Giving Tree to the YWCA Emergency Shelter project. Saturday & Sunday 12 - 5 p.m.

November 2

Disney Live! Pirate & Princess Adventure

Grab your tiaras and doubloons and join us for Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure. 1:30 p.m. & 4:30 p.m.

FARGODOME 1800 N. University Drive, Fargo

November 7

November 8

Presented by Fraser, Ltd. This workshop that will provide insights to the plight of at-risk and homeless youth in our communities. Workshop participants will learn about the social and economic challenges transition-age youth face in today’s world. 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

$11.80 Pre-registration is required. Every kid loves Penny and her musical pals, Rockin’ Robot and Bernie the Bear! Come wiggle, giggle and sing with Penny. Learn songs, dances and work with props. Then show off what you learned during the workshop at a special performance at the end of each session for families and friends. Time: 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Band-Aids or Solutions

Courtyard by Marriott Moorhead

November 8

4 Luv of Dog Rescue 6th Annual Silent Auction & Gala

The Silent Auction & Gala, 4 Luv of Dog Rescue’s largest fundraiser of the year, is a family-friendly casual event featuring music, hors d’oeuvres, and door prizes throughout the evening. 7-11 PM

Holiday Inn 3803 13th Ave. S., Fargo

Penny & Pals Workshop

RDJ Rec Center 1104 2nd Ave. S. | 499-7788

November 14December 24 Red Kettle Campaign

We are in need of volunteers to Ring the Bells during The Salvation Army's Red Kettle Campaign! Make it a holiday tradition with your family, friends or coworkers. For more information, contact Kimberly at 701-356-2688. 10 a.m. - 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday

All over the Fargo/Moorhead/West Fargo/ Dilworth community

November 8 and 9 2014 Holiday Homes of Hope

Professionally decorated homes in the prestigious Osgood neighborhood, Holiday Hope Boutique at the 9 Iron clubhouse in Osgood to include lunch and drink specials, vendors, baked goods, artisan treasures, handmade scarves and mittens, holiday fresh greenery and decor. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sat., 12 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Osgood Neighborhood, Fargo 800-767-3593

Are you planning or attending an upcoming event? Submit local events online at


CALENDAR OF E VENT S Note: All events are subject to change. Confirm dates and times before attending.

November 19

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis Experience the Magic! MANNHEIM STEAMROLLER CHRISTMAS by Chip Davis has been America’s favorite holiday tradition and this year marks the 30th Anniversary of the group’s annual tour. 7:30 p.m.

FARGODOME 1800 N. University Drive, Fargo

November 15

City of Moorhead Tree Lighting

Join us in kicking off the holiday season with carolers and the lighting of the tree. 5 p.m.

Memorial Park 210 8th St. N. Moorhead 218.299.5340

QUOTABLE "For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. Then you will seek me and find me: when you seek me with all your heart, I will be found by you, declares the Lord. " — JEREMIAH 29: 11-14

November 28

December 18-21

An event for the whole family. The Claus Family, sleigh rides, Games Galore, entertainment, art, face painting, and more. Open to the public. 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Originally from Fargo, North Dakota, The Blenders are proud to call Minneapolis, MN their home. They have spent the last 24 years touring the U.S. with their unique style of vocal, harmonybased music. Tickets are on sale thru tickets300. Presented by Bell State Bank. 7:30 p.m. with matinees at 2 p.m. on the 20th and 21st.

Cookies with the Claus Family


November 29 Santa Village Opens

Celebrate the season of giving this holiday season by planning a visit to Santa Village. Enjoy the winter wonderland from the Saturday after Thanksgiving until the day before Christmas Eve. Fee: Free admission with donation - canned goods, new toys, or cash donation. 1 - 7 p.m.

Santa Village

Rheault Farm, 2902 25th St. S. | 499-7788



Are you planning or attending an upcoming event? Submit local events online at


24th Annual Paws Walk “Stride for Strays”

Raises Over $40,300 By Beth Diane Bradley Photography by Nate Michelberg

A dog named

Esperanza, was the grand marshall of the Humane Society Fargo-Moorhead’s “Stride for Strays” Paws Walk this year. Her name means “hope” in Spanish, which seems perfect for an alum with special needs who proudly represented shelter animals and their hope of finding a special family to care for them. The event took place Tuesday evening, July 29 at Lindenwood Park in Fargo. Participants enjoyed music, games and food while walking to raise money to benefit homeless cats and dogs. The funds will provide food, shelter and veterinary care while the animals wait for their forever homes. “At this year’s event, we wanted to emphasize family – both two legged and four, making it a fun-filled night the whole family can enjoy,” Heather Klefstad, Special Events / PR Coordinator, said. “We couldn’t be happier with the turn out and the success of the Paws Walk. Hundreds of supporters showed up with their beloved pets and helped us raise much needed funds for the shelter animals. We are truly grateful for the support,” said Nukhet Hendricks, Executive Director. “Following the Paws Walk, the Humane Society Fargo-Moorhead changed its name to Homeward Animal Shelter to clarify that the organization is and always has been a locally run animal shelter,” Hendricks explained. “It is not associated with any national organization, never has been, nor does it receive funds from any national organization. [AWM]


ZOOlebration! By LaurelLee Loftsgard Photography by Sydney Schermerhorn

The Red River Valley Zoo’s third annual ZOOlebration brought fun, prizes and a couple cute animals―and that doesn't even include the ones in costume. This one-of-a-kind event was a celebration of the zoo’s 15-year anniversary. Executive director Laura Tate said they try to keep their event unique, different from any other in town. “One way ZOOlebration is different is our live auction. We only have a select few items, and the ones we do, we make sure are unique, that you can’t just go buy anywhere,” Tate said. A special item from the auction was an original painting from world-renowned artist Hans Droog of a tiger with a bowtie. The person who purchased the painting was generous enough to donate it back to the zoo. Speaking of tigers, one made a special appearance at the ZOOlebration, in the form of a mascot. Honorary hosts Bill and Cris


Marcil dressed as a tiger and panda for the event, and none of the attendees knew they were the ones inside the costumes. “It was funny to see the different way people treated us inside the costume,” Cris said, “we thought it would be a fun way to bring awareness and support to the zoo while having a little fun in the process.” The mascots weren’t the only fun part. The event’s ambassador, a baby porcupine named Peaches, also came out for the party. People could meet Peaches and also have their photo taken. Though there was fun to be had all around with the live auction, camel feeding and anniversary celebration, ZOOlebration is also about raising awareness and keeping the community informed about this “living museum.”[AWM]

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sharehouse: Jeans & Jerseys By Alissa Maier Photography by Nate Mickelberg

On the evening

of August 27 friends, family, clients and supporters of ShareHouse, Inc. gathered for the 2nd Annual Jeans and Jerseys fundraiser. ShareHouse, Inc., a program that serves both men and women who have the disease of chemical dependency, has been serving the Fargo-Moorhead area for nearly 40 years. The Jeans and Jerseys fundraiser first started in 2013 and was held again this year at the Ramada Plaza Suites in Fargo. The lively event featured a sporty theme complete with tailgating, live music nd a social hour outside. Guests then moved indoors for dinner and a live auction with incredible items such as a seven-night Vail condo stay and a Broadway rooftop social and Fargo Theatre package. Members of the community also shared vignettes about their firsthand experience with ShareHouse, Inc. Carrie Simonson, currently on the ShareHouse Inc. board of directors and ShareHouse Foundation board, stated that it was a “fabulous event, well-attended, and everyone had a great time helping raise money for ShareHouse.” With nearly 300 guests, the event was able to raise over $95,000. All of the funds benefit clients here in the community. The funds will be used similarly to those raised at last year’s event—to help fund projects that improve the facilities by adding storage, updating kitchens, providing more beds, etc. The funds will also support the new program “Sober Fun” that offers activities for clients who are recovering to experience having fun without chemicals. The Jeans and Jerseys fundraiser is an annual event held each summer. Be on the lookout for information about the event for 2015 or visit to offer a gift to the ShareHouse Foundation. [AWM]


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There are a handful

of iconic female roles in theatre; characters like Juliet in Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” and Blanche de Bois in Tennessee Williams’ “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Theatre B director David Wintersteen would add the complex protagonist in Margaret Edson’s “Wit,” Vivian Bearing Ph.D, to that list. The play opened Theatre B’s twelfth season last month and continues its run through October 18. “This is a bucket-list role for an actress,” said David. “This is a great role, a Pulitzer Prize winning script, a beautiful play.” Carrie Wintersteen, an acclaimed local actress and a founding member of Theatre B, portrays Vivian in the Theatre B production. She also happens to be David’s wife and collaborator. Carrie was happy to have David at her side as she dug into such a complex script. Her character, Vivian, is a brilliant academic, a professor who specializes in the sonnets of John Donne. These dense, metaphysical poems explore life, death and salvation. She is also battling ovarian cancer. “This character is both wrestling with death as an academic exercise and the very immediate, concrete, physical struggle of chemotherapy,” David said. “So it’s both a play about the life of the mind and about the life of the body.” “She (Vivian) talks about the way that she would study a poem as directly parallel to the way that the doctors are now studying her,” said Carrie. “It’s beautiful that there’s this poetry that ends up being the vehicle for a conversation about cancer.”

The Role of a Lifetime Theatre B tackles life and death through a unique collaboration By Alicia Underlee Nelson Photography by Jill Ockhardt


Despite the weighty subject matter, “it’s not some kind of a weighty, downer event,” said David. “There’s a levity to it, there’s a lightness, there’s humor -- I mean, the play is called ‘Wit.’ There’s no shortage of humor, which helps to leaven it.” Vivian’s soaring intellect makes up the core of her character. But honestly portraying her struggle to reconcile her analytical nature with the emotional ups and downs of cancer treatment is what brings the role to life for an actress and for audiences.

To give Vivian and her world a heightened sense of realism, Theatre B’s production of “Wit” partnered with individuals who knew about these struggles firsthand -- doctors, cancer patients and cancer survivors. Through a unique partnership between Sanford Health, the University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences and the Embrace Cancer Survivorship Program, the cast of “Wit” spent much of its rehearsal time listening and learning. “It’s wonderful to have this extra support to really inform how we present the play,” says Carrie. The resident physicians at UND and the doctors at Sanford provided valuable insight into the play and its world. They gave the actors and director a new perspective on the play’s setting, explained medical terminology and discussed the emotional implications of each diagnosis. The staff and survivors at Embrace shared their stories and gave Carrie a deeper understanding of the struggles her character faced. Carrie even took part in a Stage IV breast and ovarian cancer support group, an intimate invitation that still clearly fills her with emotion. “I’m so grateful that they want to be open to this experience and help guide me,” she said.

The play touches on something that is now a very common experience. There won’t be a single person sitting in the audience who hasn’t known someone who went through this journey.



Margaret Edson ••••••••••••••••••••

September 25 – October 18

Theatre B

716 Main Avenue Fargo, ND 701-729-8880


Box Office Hours:

Monday-Friday: 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Thursday-Saturday: 6:30 p.m. (before 7:30 p.m. curtain)

In addition to the play’s public performances, Theatre B opened the play for a private audience of Sanford staff and also performed at the annual Embrace retreat. The cast and crew say that the impact and emotional resonance of “Wit” aren’t limited to the medical community or individuals who have battled cancer. “The play touches on something that is now a very common experience,” said Carrie. “There won’t be a single person sitting in the audience who hasn’t known someone who went through this journey. “This is one of those plays that takes the audience on an incredible journey,” she continued. “Yes, you’re going to feel sad. But that’s not the sum of the story. The sum of this story is really a beautiful journey that teaches so much about the human condition.”


STYLE Photographer Inna Sumra

has a photography style all her own. Read the story about how she found her place behind the camera and the impact she is having on those she photographs. Take a look at the work of other talented photographers in the FM area and read up on the latest styles for the fall. Be sure to read about the team at Bagan Strinden Vision and the brand new certificate program being offered at MSUM in this edition of Area Style. Image provided by Inna Sumra.

painting with light The photography of Inna Sumra By Alicia Underlee Nelson Photography by Inna Sumra

From the very first glance, a

portrait by Inna Sumra is different – dramatically different. Her subjects are familiar – landscapes, families with small children, high school seniors and professionals from across the region – but the images Sumra captures are vivid, beautifully arranged compositions that feature the dramatic use of light and color. Sumra is inspired by classical painters like John Singer Sargent, Rembrandt and Leonardo da Vinci, masters of light, composition and the human form. This influence is apparent in her work and in her creative process. “I use the light as a tool and I paint with the light,” said Sumra. “That’s how it creates that three dimensional look. We do quite a lot of classic portraiture. I’m always creating that kind of depth and feeling, almost like I’m painting.” Sumra says that the final product often induces a sense of wonder in people who are seeing her


You can always find beauty if you just keep your eyes open work for the first time. “They look at the portraits and sometimes they even touch it and they say ‘Is that a photograph or is that a painting’? “To me, it says that my careful planning has paid off,” she said. Sumra may be a careful planner in the studio, but she’s an adventurer in life, a blonde dynamo and world traveler who loves fashion and fitness. She traded a career in aircraft engineering back home in Russia for love because the man of her dreams just happened to be a doctor in Cavalier, North Dakota. So fourteen years ago, Sumra found herself halfway across the world, a young bride in a new place, in search of a new passion. She built her photography business, Inna Photography, from the ground up. A daughter – now 11 – soon followed. The business expanded to include a state-ofthe-art studio in downtown Cavalier and an expansive Photographer Inna Sumra


Inna’s Awards and Accolades

•••••••••••••••••••• Inna Sumra’s photographs have won seven Professional Photographers (PPA) of America International Awards. The PPA is the largest non-profit association for professional photographers in the world. Sumra will have these two photos featured in The Royal Photographic Society’s International Images for Screen Exhibition in 2014. She is also working toward a fellowship with the Royal Photographic Society. Only society fellows are eligible to photograph the Royal Family, a career high for any portrait photographer. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • outdoor studio, over 100 acres Sumra calls “Mini Hollywood.” It’s a wonderland of trees, prairie grasses and wildflowers that also includes antique cars, antique buggies, antique gas trucks, farm buildings, swings, two vintage Mercedes and even a vintage caboose and railway line. Sumra’s clients come from miles around, making the trip to Cavalier a pleasant ritual, spending time with Sumra not just during the photo shoot, but during the planning session before the shoot and the portrait selection process afterward. This personal connection and attention to detail brings her customers back, time after time. “With most of my clients, I become friends, almost like a family member,” said Sumra. “My family – mom and my brother – is far away in Russia and here I have only my husband


I use the light as a tool and I paint with the light... I’m always creating that kind of depth and feeling, almost like I’m painting and my daughter. I treat my clients like family. I pay attention to what they want and what they need. The most rewarding thing is when you go someplace and you see people and they hug you and they tell you they really appreciate what they have on their wall and how many compliments they hear from people and how much they enjoy it. That’s the most rewarding thing for me.” Sumra is an artist who discovers and celebrates beauty, in her clients and in the world around her, from masterpieces on the walls of Europe’s most famous museums to the prairie sunsets outside her adopted North Dakota town. “You can always find beauty,” said Sumra, “if you just keep your eyes open.” [AWM]

Inna Photography

116 Main Street Cavalier, North Dakota (701) 265-3126

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love never fails.

Ockhardt Photography

Studio A Photo


Studio A Photo

Scherling Photography

Ben Nash Photography

Rachel Torgerson Photography


you have put gladness in my heart

Scherling Photography

Ockhardt Photography

Scherling Photography

Ockhardt Photography Ashley Oberholtzer Photography


Scherling Photography

Ockhardt Photography

Scherling Photography


classic & cozy

By Alicia Underlee Nelson

Winter dressing requires

quality pieces that can stand up to the elements and look great all season long. Look for well-made wardrobe staples that can be worn multiple ways to get the most for your money. Pants are a winter fashion staple. They look great at work, elevate a casual outfit and easily transition to evening. Investing in a pair with a classic, tailored shape will give your winter wardrobe new life. Look for pants that are long and lean with a slim or tapered leg for an elegant silhouette. Although this style is body conscious, it works for all shapes and sizes. But a great fit is absolutely vital. Expect to spend some time in the fitting room – and with a tailor, if necessary – to get the perfect slim fit. Pants should skim your curves but never cling and the waistband should lie comfortably flat. Hem slim pants just below the ankle to show a little skin and highlight fabulous shoes.


For versatility, choose a solid color in a favorite neutral. For fun, try a tuxedo stripe or experiment with patterns like an oversized houndstooth check or flirty leopard print. Keep the rest of your outfit simple and streamlined to let the pants shine. For print-lovers, an eye-catching Nordic sweater is a fun counterpoint to classic dark pants. These Scandinavian sweaters reference fashion’s print craze and our region’s heritage with eye-catching patterns and a relaxed shape. A Nordic pattern is less expected than a Fair Aisle sweater and more classic than trendy tribal prints. They’re available in range of muted, flattering colors that work for a variety of skin tones. Designs range from traditional styles with an heirloom feel to sporty options that will look right at home on the slopes. And they’re all warm and cozy and perfect for those cold winter nights. [AWM]

01 | scheels Fusion Boutique 3202 13th Avenue South, Fargo (701) 232-8903

02 | Stabo

West Acres Mall | 701-282-0421

03 | Laurie's

South Creek Center 32nd Avenue & 25th Street Starbucks Corner | (701) 282-8180




Lifestyle Savvy


Claudio Riaz Instant Face Pallette delivers a flawless makeup that evens and perfects your skin, all in one customizable palette. This exclusive makeup line is perfect for the onthe-go lady! 

Twyla's Cosmetique


4141 31st St. S. Suite #102 (701) 356-0097

Indulgent, ontrend lipstick shades. Hundreds of colors to choose from. Custom-blend lipsticks and lipgloss available!

2420 S. University Drive, Fargo (701) 282-5303


Kallod carpet

A great addition to any home, the Allenton comes in traditional cherry or chestnut, with two leg options.

Scheels Fusion Boutique


2420 University Drive S. Fargo (701) 238-4002 |


Stabo Scandinavian Imports

Bring a smile to the coffee table with our twist on the soup mug... Thorvald's Cream of Lutefisk Mug!

West Acres Mall | 701-282-0421


3202 13th Ave. S., Fargo (701) 232-8903


Introduction JASON - the newest collection from Comfy. JASON's unique "paper jersey" stretch knit is lightweight and wrinkle-free, perfect for travel or everyday wear. Transition to fall beautifully with a mix of unique separates. MADE IN THE USA. ONLY AT Fusion Boutique.

Yarns and rovings from our herd. $8.00 to $20.00

17061 54th St. SE, Kindred (701) 238-4002



2553 Kirsten Lane 25th St. and 32nd Ave. S., Fargo 701-373-2020 | 46



JIMMY CHOO EYEWEAR and SUNWEAR for Women embodies the beauty, elegance, and sophistication that Jimmy Choo is known for. See the entire collection at our TRUNK SHOW October 23rd, 12-7p.m..

Locally made soy candles! Scents include Fraser fir & northwoods forest. Birch is wonderful for decorating!

1201 Center Ave., Moorhead (218) 233-6131



Baggallinis are in at the Centre for Hair and Wellness!

Downtown Moorhead | (218) 236-6000


breathe message

Young Living Oils are 100% pure therapeutic grade essential oils. These oils can be used to purify your home,enhance physical wellness,refine your skin, and inspire a positive emotional state. This is all done through diffusing your oils, inhaling, applying them topically, or being taken orally!

26 Roberts St. Suite 111 | (701) 429-0198


My Best Friend's Closet

Bring some color and flash to your Fall wardrobe with a great scarf or necklace.

1617 32nd Ave. S., #J, Fargo


Left to right: Tom Strinden, MD, Sarah Swanholm, OD & Steve Bagan, MD.


NE X T LE VEL At Bagan Strinden Vision, new technology gives almost everyone the opportunity to see better without eyeglasses Article Provided by Bagan Strinden Vision

Tom Strinden, MD, and Steve Bagan, MD are having

a great time! Both Fargo eye surgeons have decades of experience in all kinds of complex eye surgeries, but recent advances in vision correction technology are bringing more excitement and possibilities than ever. Clients who in earlier years would have had no choice but to wear strong eyeglasses or uncomfortable hard contact lenses, now have new procedures available to them. Astigmatism correction is a big thing at Bagan Strinden Vision. Most people have at least some astigmatism, but few people know what it is, and most assume that it can’t be corrected. Astigmatism means that the eyeball is not perfectly round, or spherical, like a basketball; it is somewhat oval-shaped, like a football. This isn’t apparent grossly, but when measurements are taken in the eye doctor’s office, the distortion is apparent. Bagan and Strinden have several ways to correct all degrees of astigmatism, including the region’s first Ziemer femtosecond laser for astigmatism, the only such technology in the Dakotas and Minnesota. You might think that after thousands and thousands of Lasik laser vision correction procedures, the fun might wear off for these seasoned surgeons. On the contrary, according to Dr. Bagan, “With the all-laser, bladeless vision correction, we can now fix eyes that previously had to be turned away. Dr. Strinden and I have wide experience in all kinds of eye surgeries, and that gives us the ability to do cases that are turned down by other centers.”


Dr. Strinden said “We love the tough cases, the people with lots of astigmatism or the really thick glasses who can’t even get out of bed without finding their glasses first, or can’t even read the shampoo bottle in the shower. Many times they’ve been told elsewhere that there was nothing that can be done for them, but we have options that other centers just don’t have.” “I have been wearing eye glasses since I was 13 months old and was told there was nothing that could be done to correct my vision. I was turned down by another facility and advised not to look any further. However being in the medical field myself, I sought a second opinion at Bagan Strinden Vision. The doctors at Bagan Strinden Vision used their many years of experience and the cutting edge technology at their finger tips to correct my vision in both eyes to 20/20. I am extremely pleased with my outcome and the care and concern I received from the team at Bagan Strinden Vision.” -Michael Bishop, Physician Assistant Strinden and Bagan are also the only surgeons in North Dakota certified to perform cornea cross-linking, a new experimental treatment for keratoconus. Keratoconus is a progressive warpage of the cornea, the clear tissue that lies over your iris and pupil, resulting in severe astigmatism, often leading to a cornea transplant surgery. With this new procedure, the disease can be arrested, preventing it from worsening to the stage that a transplant is needed. “It’s very gratifying to be able to perform this procedure right here in our

office, and keep these unfortunate patients from gradually losing more and more vision” said Dr. Strinden. This commitment to cutting-edge technology doesn’t affect the ambiance and kindness you feel when you meet the staff at Bagan Strinden Vision. Their office in south Fargo is warm and comfortable, and the front desk staff greet you with a smile and get you checked in promptly and easily. Technology is great, but it needs to be paired with experience, and a caring, professional attitude. Bagan Strinden Vision’s doctors, including Dr. Sarah Swanholm, are third-generation North Dakotans, and the office has been established in Fargo since 1980. As a private practice, freestanding and not attached to any hospital or large clinic, they are free to provide the best in personal service. Patients can call for an appointment without a referral, and see the doctors without having to go through a maze of registrations and lab tests. The doctors take great pride in being personally involved in each client’s care plan and follow-up, in contrast to other Lasik centers that have a surgeon fly in from out of state. Bagan and Strinden are also busy cataract surgeons, and have both taken many trips to impoverished countries to perform free surgery, usually in conditions that would not measure up to the strict standards we enjoy here. In Fargo, both doctors perform hundreds of standard and complex cataract surgeries, as well as many other types of surgery for glaucoma and other eye diseases. The latest in technology - experienced, caring doctors - and a warm, personal office setting where you feel like you are the most important person there – quite a winning combination at Bagan Strinden Vision!

To learn more,

visit or call 701-293-8242.


More importantly, MSUM is working cross departmentally to “cultivate a campus-wide awakening to creativity, innovation and design,” said Kennan Meyer, a professor who teaches entrepreneurship classes. “We want to accomplish something that hasn’t been seen at other universities.” He says the entrepreneurial spirit is thriving among universities nationwide, but more of the effort must be directed to individual departments. MSUM’s program is designed to be flexible in order to meet the varying demands of a multi-disciplinary environment.

Entrepreneurial Spirit MSUM certificate program helps local entrepreneur with start-up business

By Kristi Monson, Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications, Minnesota State University Moorhead Photography by Ande Sailer, Minnesota State University Moorhead

According to Inc. Magazine, a resource for small businesses, some of the

best industries for starting a small business are related to green construction, computer systems, digital forensic services and mHealth—the intersection of mobile and health care. The key to success in any industry is not only competitive technical expertise and creative marketing savvy, but an entrepreneurial spirit that embraces innovation, service and continuous improvement.

“We are working with faculty in departments across campus to create an entrepreneurship minor specific to their needs,” Weber said. “They will take the same three entrepreneurship classes but will also take other courses to help them understand the business environment in which they will be working.” Chris Orth has over a decade of manufacturing experience and knew he wanted to pursue a small business opportunity. The entrepreneurship certificate met his needs. “The program focuses on discovering your passion and finding a way to make that work as a small business opportunity,” Orth said. “Most of the work is project-based, and basically what you put into it is going to dictate what you get out of it. The neat thing for me was that it didn't have any prerequisite requirements, so I completed the program in two semesters.” The certificate helped spur his own startup.

Minnesota State University Moorhead sees the potential for growing the entrepreneurial spirit explosion in the Fargo-Moorhead area, but is also responding to employers who say they want to hire people who have excellent technical skills and a solid understanding of the business environment in which they operate. MSUM’s new minor and a certificate in entrepreneurship meet those needs. “The certificate program in entrepreneurship is available to anyone in the community, while the minor is well suited to enrolled students,” said Marsha Weber, MSUM’s dean of Business and Innovation. “It is tailored to people who do not have prior business training or knowledge.” The five-course, 15-credit program offers a top-level introduction to the fundamentals of management and entrepreneurship. Courses focus on business and venture initiation, finance, management and marketing essentials.


“I had ideas of what I wanted to do for a business venture, but I had so much fun designing the business projects (in class) that that was my ‘aha moment,’ realizing I wanted to help others design their own businesses,” Orth said. He is taking his manufacturing, designing, planning and building experience and transitioning into DIG Your Business, a venture to help other entrepreneurs find a unique business model that will work for

them. (DIG is an acronym for design, innovate and grow.) Learn more about this local entrepreneur’s business at “We strive to teach creativity, innovation and design in a practical application whereby students with a liberal arts degree can find new jobs, take advantage of opportunities and maximize them,” Meyer said. “I would absolutely recommend this entrepreneurship certificate to other would-be entrepreneurs,” Orth said. “I haven't found else anything quite like it.”

To learn more

about MSU Moorhead’s entrepreneurship certificate, visit

Chris Orth’s employer gave him the flexibility he needed to complete the entrepreneurship certificate and other classes he was interested in. He said working full time and taking the entrepreneurship courses in one year is very doable.

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HEALTH This edition of Area Health tackles breadth of topics

from the importance of regular mammograms to the safe removal of tattoos. For those that find themselves in need of funeral planning services, Boulger Funeral Home offers their advice on making arrangements. There is also information that could provide some guidance if you are questioning whether or not your child has ADHD. Image provided by Ockhardt Photography.

Not leaving her health to chance How an annual mammogram caught one woman’s cancer at just the right time

Article Provided by Sanford Health


to the doctor is becoming pretty routine for Kim Erickson. The 50-year-old Frazee, Minn., woman has just completed her fourth chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer. This is the start of a long road for her and her family, one that will include 12 more weeks of chemo followed by 35 radiation sessions. She has already lost her hair and will feel more nausea and fatigue as the treatments progress. But she’s not complaining. She counts herself as lucky. Kim was adamant about receiving routine mammograms, and thanks to her vigilance, her breast cancer was caught at stage 1A. “I didn’t want to gamble with my health,” says Kim. “And that’s what it would have been if I didn’t get screened. A gamble. I was within two weeks of when I got my mammogram last year, and I can’t help thinking about what would have happened if I had put it off a few months. How much would it have progressed?”

A different kind of cancer Kim is especially fortunate to have caught her cancer as early as she did. She was diagnosed with a less common form known as triple negative breast cancer.


Kim Erickson

“When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, we check her hormone receptor status,” says Mark Gitau, MD, medical oncologist at Sanford Roger Maris Cancer Center. “There are two hormones and one growth factor that typically contribute to the spread of breast cancer: estrogen, progesterone and the growth factor known as HER2. But in Kim’s case, her cancer is not influenced by any of these. So we call it a triple negative diagnosis.” This diagnosis means that Kim is not eligible for a lot of the standard treatment options. “Normally we could do some anti-hormonal therapy,” says Dr. Gitau. “However since Kim’s tumor isn’t affected by hormones, this would do her no good. Chemo is her only option.”

Trusted care Although Kim’s treatment options are limited, she feels grateful that the staff at RMCC was there to walk her through everything. “I cannot say enough good things about them,” says Kim. “One of the first things they told me was to not start looking stuff up on the Internet. They gave me a few quality sites so I could read up and be informed, but they wanted me to know that if I had questions, I should ask them and not some random person in a chat room.”

And there is no better team to ask. Edith Sanford Breast Center in Fargo has been recognized as a Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence in the National Quality Measures for Breast Centers Program. Sanford also is proud to be one of the first in the nation to receive the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers accreditation. Having both of these prestigious awards is rare in the U.S. “These accreditations mean our patients are receiving care from a top-quality multidisciplinary team,” says Dr. Gitau. “Every member of our team is an expert in their field. We all work together to provide patients with the care they need.” “It’s wonderful that this type of high level care is available right here in Fargo,” remarks Kim.

Learning more Kim and her family are also considering learning more about what could have caused her cancer to occur. “We have been thinking about doing genetic testing,” says Kim. “I have two daughters in their twenties, and I think they are curious to see if they could end up having this as well. But it’s a big decision to make. Do you want to know or do you just want to live your life?” And while Kim’s family considers genetic testing, they are all very thankful that Kim had one test in particular. “I want to encourage every eligible woman to get a mammogram and to get one every year,” states Kim. “I can’t imagine what would have happened if I hadn’t.”

Talk to your primary care provider and schedule your mammogram today.

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Six things

people wish they had known before making funeral arrangements Article Provided by Boulger Funeral Home

1 | Planning a service is a lot of work.

There are a lot of details involved in planning a funeral service. In addition to selecting a day, time and place for the service, there are many, many more decisions that need to be made. A casket, vault and flowers are some of the things that have to be chosen along with type of service preference. Writing an obituary is another task funeral directors assist families with. We also help families design a service folder, create video tributes to memorialize their loved one and coordinate special requests for luncheons or dinners following the service as well. Our Celebration of Life Center offers luncheon/dinner space up to 150 people and our spacious chapel has seating for over 250.

2 | The funeral is not paid for by Social Security or Veterans Affairs.

The family may be entitled to some benefits from Social Security or the VA, but those are typically not given to the funeral home, they are given directly to the family after they have applied. There is a one-time payment of $255 that may be paid to a spouse or eligible child after an application is made to Social Security. As of July 7, 2014, the burial allowance from the VA for a non-service-connected death is $300 and $2,000 for a death related to military service. For more information visit or, or call your local office.

3 | Power of Attorney ends at death.

Many people are not aware that their rights as power of attorney end when the person dies. If probate is required, the person appointed by the court is in charge of the finances. For smaller estates (under $50,000) there can be other options. Any authorization forms, e.g. an authorization for cremation, would need to be signed by the legal next-of-kin. A person may also leave a writing specifying instructions for her/his funeral arrangements. This could take several forms. It is important the instructions are made known so that they may be acted upon at the time of death. Instructions do no good if they are not found until a month after death. The instructions could be left with the funeral home. We would be pleased to assist with this.

4 | The funeral home does not issue death certificates.

The funeral director files the application for a death certificate with the state in which the death occurred and orders copies for the family. It is also sent to the doctor who will submit the cause of death. Typically, it takes about seven to ten business days from the date of death to receive the certified copies. This is important to keep in mind when trying to attend to a loved one’s estate, because many organizations will require a copy.

5 | There are no extra charges from the funeral home if a loved one dies away from home.

As long as we are called first, rather than a funeral home in the area where the person passed away, there are no additional service charges, only the cost of the transportation. Boulger Funeral Home is a member of Selected Independent Funeral Homes (member by invitation only) and after we are contacted, we call


another funeral home that has met the same rigorous selection criteria to assist us with the transportation and preparation work. We work with them to bring the person home as quickly as possible.

6 | A lot of things can be done in advance.

Prearranging can relieve a lot of stress for the loved ones making arrangements and can provide peace of mind for the person who has things in order. It is very common for people to make an appointment to sit down with one of our funeral directors and go over their wishes. Some people also choose to prefund during this arrangement conference. Prefunding is setting aside money in a burial trust or insurance policy to be used when the death occurs. At Boulger Funeral Home, if the service is prefunded, we will guarantee the prices on our services and merchandise. This means we guarantee the interest that accrues on the account will cover the price increases that occur due to inflation, so there won’t be additional charges when the death occurs. Please don’t hesitate to call us with any questions you may have. Our team of five Licensed Funeral Directors would be happy to assist you in any way we can.

For more information

, or to receive a “Free Guide to Pre-Planning” please feel free to call, email at info@boulgerfuneralhome. com or visit our website at

Michele Walloch, Funeral Director at Boulger Funeral Home


three Signs Your Child Might Have ADHD

Article Provided by Quality Life, Mental Health & Wellness Center

Quality Life,

a mental health and wellness center, specializes in treating children, adolescents and adults with ADHD. This time of year is when we see a lot of people concerned about their children. You go to parent/teacher conferences and the teacher makes statements like, “Your daughter is a very capable student but seems to be having hard time keeping up with the class.” “They are coming to class unprepared.” “He's very smart. He knows how to do the work, and can do the work. It’s the staying on task and staying on focus that’s difficult for him.” “Your son is very busy.” “Your daughter seems to be a follower and is often attracted to misbehaving when others are misbehaving.” As a parent you see your child working on homework, often for hours, but not getting the grades you expect they should get. Your child is sitting at the kitchen table, crying, “I hate school, I’m so dumb.” You are thinking to yourself, “I can’t get them to sit down and eat. They just go, go, and go.” “His sister is always crying that her brother is picking on her and won’t leave her alone.” “Their room is a disaster; looks like a tornado went through.” “Every light is on in the house, doors are open, I don’t understand we’ve had the same rules for ever and I still have to yell at them.” “They are just a lazy kid.”


The following are three signs your child/adolescent might have ADHD: • Inattention • Hyperactivity • Impulsivity Children with ADHD may exhibit one or a combination of these symptoms.

Inattention Does your child: • Make careless mistakes or lack attention to details? • Have difficulty focusing during class, conversations or lengthy reading? • Not listen when spoken to directly (mind seems somewhere else)? • Fail to follow through on instructions, schoolwork or chores (gets easily sidetracked)? • Have difficulty organizing tasks and activities (messy, poor time management, disorganized work)? • Avoid doing homework or chores? • Lose things? • Get easily distracted? • Act forgetful in daily activities (chores, homework)?

Hyperactivity/Impulsivity Does your child: • Fidget with or tap hands or feet or squirm in seat? • Leave their seat in situations when remaining seated is expected? • Run or climb in situations where it is inappropriate (adolescent might say they are restless)? • Find it difficult to play quietly? • Seem “on the go” or act as if “driven by a motor” (unable to sit still, hard to keep up with)? • Talk too much? • Blurt, complete people’s sentences, not wait for their turn in conversation? • Have difficulty waiting their turn (while waiting in line)? • Interrupt or intrude on others (butts into conversations, games or activities, uses other peoples things without asking or receiving permission)?

Adult ADHD Do you or your significant other • Have trouble wrapping up the final details of a project once the challenging parts have been done? • Have difficulty getting things in order when you have to do a task that requires organization? • Have problems remembering appointments or obligations? • Avoid or delay getting started when you have a task that requires a lot of thought? • Fidget or squirm with your hands or feet when you have to sit down for a long time? • Feel overly active and compelled to do things, like you were driven by a motor or feel restless?

Cause No definitive cause has been determined. Possible causes include hereditary factors. Researchers have found that siblings of a child with ADHD has 2-3x increased risk of also having ADHD. ADHD is not caused by: • Sugar, refined foods, or food additives • Bad parenting • Ineffective schools or teachers.

Consequences of ADHD • low self-esteem • academic underachievement or failure • poor peer relationships; social exclusion • accidents/injuries • substance abuse • family disruption

Help If you notice these behaviors and have concerns about your child, adolescent or yourself you can visit our website or call the office at 701-478-0333.

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Dermatologist uses laser technology to remove tattoos Article Provided by Connie Wirta at Essentia Health

As more people get tattoos, more people also regret their inked skin.

“Some patients got the tattoo they wanted in their youth but now they have grandkids,” said Dr. Michael Blankinship, an Essentia Health dermatologist in Fargo. “Others are young people who are beginning their professional lives or who want to enter military service. The people I see most often within days are those who have had a cosmetic tattoo -permanent makeup like a lip liner or eyeliner.” Dr. Blankinship offers laser tattoo removal to people of all ages at Essentia Health’s South University Clinic in Fargo. At the first appointment, he takes a thorough medical history and examines the tattoo. It’s critical to determine what kinds of pigments were used since they react differently to laser energy and light, he explained. “Where a tattoo is on the body and its colors are important in selecting the proper laser settings,” Dr. Blankinship said. “I also ask whether it was done by a professional or amateur tattoo artist and do a test spot.” Black and blue pigments respond best to laser treatment, the doctor said. Greens, pinks, pastels and neons are more difficult because they are often blended with titanium oxide, a white pigment, he explained.


Each color of pigment is treated with a different wavelength of light and different energy levels, Dr. Blankinship said. “The pigments absorb light and then break down into tiny particles,” he said. “The particles are then removed from the skin by the body’s own cells.” Laser treatments are often scheduled four weeks or more apart to allow the body to move the pigments out. The skin also needs time to heal, the dermatologist noted. “I tell patients that removing a tattoo hurts a little more than getting a tattoo,” Dr. Blankinship said. More sensitive areas, such as the face or neck, are more uncomfortable. Areas can be numbed with an anesthetic cream or injection before the laser treatment. Dr. Blankinship can estimate the number of treatments needed to remove a tattoo, but it

can vary depending on how each pigment breaks down and how each person’s body responds to treatment. It can be harder to remove a tattoo if it has been touched up or if a new tattoo has been applied over an older one. “Sometimes we can’t remove all the ink so there’s a ghost of the tattoo,” he said. Dr. Blankinship stresses that tattoo removal is a process, and a process that takes time. “If you want a tattoo to completely disappear, plan to give it a year,’’ he advised. “Don’t come in three months before your wedding.” When choosing who will remove your tattoo, Dr. Blankinship said it’s critical to determine if the person has had proper training on laser use and has experience using the device. “The person needs to know how to select the right laser. Not all pigments can be treated

Dr. Michael Blankinship, an Essentia Health dermatologist, uses lasers to remove tattoos and stresses that it is a process. “If you want a tattoo to completely disappear, plan to give it a year,’’ he advises. “Don’t come in three months before your wedding.”

• • • • • • • • • • • • • by all wavelengths and you need to use the right energy,” the physician explained. As a dermatologist with extensive training in laser treatments, Dr. Blankinship also can identify any medical risk factors or potential complications. At Essentia Health’s Dermatology Department, the cost of laser treatments is calculated by using square inches. While others offering the service locally charge by the square centimeter, Essentia Health charges by the square inch, which is 6.5 square centimeters, and charges less than many competitors.

To make an appointment with Dr. Blankinship, call (701) 364-8900.

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We are all aware that winter is on its way. But

are you aware of all the ways you need to prepare your home for the cold and snow? An article by Laney's will give you the information you need. Tour a home featured in last year's Homes for the Holidays Charity Tour as plans are being made for this year's event. And learn about a new real estate team in town that is ready to assist you in finding a great place to call home. Image provided by Taylor Made Photography.

Change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors monthly by holding down the “test” button. You should change the batteries in both types of detectors when you change your clocks for daylight savings time. Smoke detectors should be replaced every ten years, and carbon monoxide detectors should be replaced every two to seven years depending on the unit.

Check your sump pump hoses Before the outdoor temperature stays consistently below freezing, you should remove the flexible discharge sump hose to prevent freeze up. If you have a waiver from your city, now is the time to divert sump discharge indoors.

Preparing Your Home

For Winter

One of the many reasons people live in this area is to experience its distinct change of seasons. And as we say goodbye to fall and prepare to welcome winter, with its sub-zero temperatures, cold winds, and—dare we say it—snow, there are a number of things you can check around your home to ensure a warm and safe winter for your family. Article Provided by Laney's

Have your furnace serviced by a professional

All furnace manufacturers recommend annual inspections and maintenance by a qualified technician. Typically, the service technician will check all electrical connections and voltages as well as clean the major furnace components to ensure that your heating system is running at peak operating efficiency. All filters will be inspected and changed as needed. Most importantly, however, the technician will check all the operational controls for safety, giving you peace of mind that they are working properly.


Disconnect outdoor garden hoses

Your garden hose will freeze if you leave it connected in the winter, especially if there is water inside the hose. When your garden hose freezes, the expansion of the water inside your hose can cause holes to form and weaken the lining of your hose. Additionally, a frozen, connected garden hose can eventually lead to a ruptured pipe inside your home.

Check outside faucets to make sure they are not dripping If you do find any leaks or drips, repair or replace the fixture before the temperature drops to freezing. Water dripping, no matter how slowly, can block up and freeze in the pipe or fixture. Although a frozen outdoor faucet may not be apparent until the next season, it may be possible to minimize the damage by repairing the leak before the winter.

Central air conditioners do not need to be covered

There is no need to cover your central air conditioner during the winter months. An uncovered unit allows air to flow through the unit

so moisture doesn’t build up. When air cannot flow through condensation can occur, resulting in rust and other deterioration. In addition, this equipment is designed to work outdoors, exposed to heat, cold, wind, rain, snow and other elements.

Keep furnace vents and gas meters clear of snow and ice Keep your furnace intake and exhaust vents clear of snow and ice to prevent build-up of carbon monoxide inside your home. Blocked vents can affect the performance of the furnace, which may not run properly or at all if these vents are blocked.

Your outdoor gas meter is designed to withstand winter weather conditions, but heavy or hard-packed snow and ice can present a safety hazard. An icy buildup caused by water leaking from a gutter, freezing rain or melting piled snow could damage its fittings and pipes causing gas leaks. It can also impede its function of controlling the gas pressure, which could lead to serious risks.

If you have questions

regarding any of this information, call the professionals at Laney’s Plumbing, Heating, and Electrical at 701-237-0543, for expert advice on completing these tasks.

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peace on

Earth Holiday Home Showcase Fall 2014 Joyce Eisenbraun • Photography by Taylor Made Photography

A cherished Christmas

sentiment was beautifully expressed in Holland’s Landscaping and Garden Center decorations for the annual Homes for the Holidays charity tour last year. “All the decorations we used in the home were inspired by the beauty of nature,” explained Sarah Liljestrand, Holland co-owner and designer. Birch wood and twigs, metallic doves, white and Norway pine boughs, root tables, decorative deer, artichoke hearts and white roses were some of the natural elements delightfully woven into the décor of this historic downtown Fargo home. Although an historic home where former President John F. Kennedy once visited, the current owner enjoys a more contemporary style inside. Liljestrand melded that contemporary flair and the theme for the year in the natural inspiration. Natural elements grace the front entry. The traditional heating radiators are topped with marble and become home to decorative deer, mini trees and branches along with an unusual root


container. An oversized pottery vase is filled with bare branches, decorated with rustic birds, and copper, silver and bronze frosted pine cones. At the base a lamb sculpture reminds guests of the holiday theme. The dining room has a lovely view from the mullioned windows. Anchoring the space is the owner’s dark trestle dining table and hand-carved wood chairs. Liljestrand adds glamour with a silver and white chevron pattern table runner, matching the accent pillows on the window seat. Crystal beads carried by glittering doves provide sparkle for the natural twigs in birch holders used as centerpieces on the table. Crimson roses and dusted greenery fill unusual mercury glass jars. Silver charger plates are set with white mini pumpkins, pine cones and napkin holders that have a pheasant feather as lovely detail. To the side of the dining table is a beautiful natural root table. The tree roots create the base and the top of the table, creating a lovely contrast to the artificial frosted trees placed on the top and at the base. White lights on the trees keep the look contemporary and bright. Tucked at the base is a charming rustic fawn sculpture in a playful pose.


A Christmas package, in recycled paper and tied with raffia, hints at the holiday fun. The window ledges are trimmed with little sparkling trees and natural branches. In the large living room, twigs and pheasant feathers in mercury glass jars adorn the mantle above the birch logs in the fireplace. Above, an original artwork done by Liljestrand, entitled “Those Who Dwell,” emphasizes the contemporary motif. Candles add warmth and light to the mantle display. Between the two couches near the window, an unusual custom Christmas tree was created by Holland's out of reclaimed wood. Wood pallets from deliveries were repurposed into a hand-crafted tree, with doweled branches supported by a center pipe. Individual branches hold candles in mercury votives, silver wire birds as a symbol of peace and their intricate nests, complete with eggs. Copper wire, accented with silver balls and wire pine cones complete the tree. Presents wrapped in recycled paper and tied with yarn sit nearby. The coffee table boasts a bouquet of JFK roses in creamy white, with white pine accents. A carved teak fish floats gracefully on a pedestal above the coffee table, and complements the carved burl wood footstool. Candles used in the room are from Hollands' line of soy candles that are made in Minnesota. Relaxing under the coffee table is a stoic fox sculpture. In the kitchen, natural elements take a sophisticated twist to complement the room’s modern style of oversized brushed nickel hardware and a black granite-topped island. On the island, a large wire tree ornamented with glass prisms and icicles draws attention to the tall ceilings. At the base of the tree, a pair of graceful deer created from silver wire, seem to approve the choice of wines offered. Greens and an artichoke garnish a silver holiday tray while red roses and white pine make a holiday bouquet in the mercury glass vase. Other white vases hold pine twigs. Leading to the back porch, Liljestrand used a frosted tree with white lights to complement the artichoke ornaments and red dogwood twig accents. A door to the study has a bittersweet and rose hip wreath done by Prairie Wreaths.



About the Holiday Tour

The annual Homes for the Holiday Charity Tour event is hosted by the Alpha Gamma Delta sorority at NDSU to raise funds for various local charities. Last year, Churches United was the beneficiary, in conjunction with the sheltering churches, who helped shelter homeless individuals during the harsh winter weather. The beneficiary for the 2014 tour will be the YWCA, which helps women and children. The event is held the first weekend in November, and tickets are $20 to tour the beautifully decorated homes. Tickets can be purchased at the various decorating entities, including Holland's, as well as Alpha Gamma Delta members. Liljestrand said they will be decorating a red farmhouse in a modern Scandinavian theme this year for the tour.

About Holland's

“We could see blue sky when we first bought the building,” commented Liljestrand about the building they bought in 2006 that currently houses their landscaping and garden center. “We’ve been fixing it ever since, so there’s something new every year.” A family business, with Liljestrand’s husband as coowner, and her mom, cousins and sister as co-workers, Holland's has earned a reputation for offering a fresh perspective for homeowners, both inside and out. “We enjoy taking things from nature and repurposing it for a specific design.” The hand-crafted tree used in the showcase is a classic example of the unique style, ensuring that each tree is different and unusual, and something that no one else would have. “We love the holidays,” confessed Liljestrand. “Every year, we totally transform our space for the holidays, and every year is different. We love to feature the natural beauty of the region, in the décor, accessories and gift items.” [AWM]

For more information

about the annual Holiday Tour of Homes or Holland's, please contact:

Mike & Sarah Liljestrand

Holland's Landscaping & Garden Center 1201 Center Avenue Moorhead, MN 56560 218-233-6131


a warm


to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties By Joyce Eisenbraun Photography by Sydney Schermerhorn

It’s a name most often

associated with a Midwest financial wizard, Warren Buffett, but it is also the new affiliation for old friends in the FM area: Prudential Premier Real Estate has now transitioned to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties. The official move was made on October 15, with the launch of all new signs and sponsorship of the Chamber’s Business After Hours event. “We are so excited about this opportunity,” said broker Betsy Denis. “It’s a great honor to be selected to be one of the franchise brokerages for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices (BHHS). They offer a new way of thinking—and new technology to go with it—to enhance the whole real estate


Tyrone Leslie, President & Betsy Denis, Broker at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties experience.” In a recent article in Real Estate magazine, it noted that BHHS is “selective in granting franchises to affiliates who are known for their trust, integrity, stability and longevity.” Irvine, CA-based HSF Affiliates LLC operates the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network. The company is a joint venture of which HomeServices of America, Inc., the nation’s second-largest, full-service residential brokerage firm, is a majority owner. HomeServices of America is an affiliate of world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Denis noted that one of the biggest advantages of the franchise change to BHHS will be for the real estate agents. “It’s very expensive to implement the kind of technology support we get from BHHS,” she said. “We now have

access to their innovations and expertise, and it will benefit the agents and the consumers they serve.” The high-tech Global Network Platform, produced by BHHS, includes agent features such as enhanced lead generation, mobile networks and education portals, while also including many advantages for consumers. “They have a Walk Score, and even drive times between the home and selected locations,” said Denis. “It’s a wonderful feature for individuals, like physicians and nurses, who may have to be accessible for emergencies. They now can see if they’re within their time constraints for emergency response.” As Stephen Phillips, president of BHHS, said in a recent interview for Real Estate magazine, “the quality and accuracy

of the data we provide consumers is top notch… (consumers) want to work with the premier agents and companies in the real estate business.” The 40 agents in the local office join a brand that now counts more than 32,000 agents and 1,011 offices in 47 states since its launch a year ago. And BHHS’ innovative strategies have earned them the “Real Estate Agency Brand of the Year” in the 2014 Harris Poll EquiTrend® study, as well as a Gold Stevie Award at the 12th annual American Business Awards. In addition to supporting agents and consumers, BHHS is also involved in supporting a charity that has been dear to the hearts of many at the local office: Sunshine Kids Foundation. This non-profit provides positive group activities and emotional support for young cancer patients. “We are involved with several fundraisers for them throughout the year,” Denis said. “All the funds raised locally are used to benefit children right here in our community—it’s a wonderful charity, and we’re so pleased to help.” New opportunities and a new name, but the same familiar faces and exceptional service: a hearty Fargo-Moorhead welcome to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties!

For more information


please contact: Betsy Denis, Broker Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier Properties 1815 38th Street South • Fargo, ND 58103 701-356-3600 •


PROFILES The FM area is full of people that

astound us with their compassion and commitment to others. Three such women are featured in this edition of Area Profiles. Meet Mrs. North Dakota Janelle Stenberg; read about the impact of theater in the lives of people in the FM area for the past 100 years; get to know Billi Jo Zielinski窶付he heartbeat behind Make-A-Wish North Dakota. Be inspired by the lives of those around you. Image provided by Ockhardt Photography.

Fostering a full Life

Janelle Steinberg Reigns as Mrs. North Dakota By Jill N. Kandel • Photography By Ben Nash

Janelle Steinberg is an energetic,

joyful woman. As the reigning Mrs. N.D. International 2014, mother to six children, and Children's Program Director at Triumph Lutheran Church, it is more than her hands that are full. It is her heart. Janelle met her husband Keith while she was working at the Buckle. "He came in to buy a watch and got a wife," she quipped. They were married a year later to the day. A few years later, with two children of their own, the Steinberg's were approached to adopt a baby whose mother was only fourteen years old. "We went through the whole process and fell in love with the baby and gave her a name," Steinberg said. "When the young


mother decided to keep the baby it felt like a death to us." Steinberg got rid of all her baby items saying they were done. Within a short time she was pregnant with her third child. "We still felt like the baby we'd lost in adoption was 'our' little girl," Steinberg said. "We found out that they both ended up in foster care and we wanted to do for another child what someone was doing for 'our' child. So we started looking into foster care." The morning after the Steinberg's received their foster care license, they received a call to take a pair of brothers who were three and four years old. "After a year of foster care we were asked to adopt them. And their sister! We were shellJanelle Steinberg, Mrs. North Dakota


isn't easy but it is


shocked, and went home to consider and pray. God spoke clearly to both of us and we headed to adoption."

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"If we'd been given a map of the next four years, "Steinberg said, "I'd have said no. I can't. But life isn't like that. You do life day by day. One of the wonderful things that has turned out is that we're in touch with the kid's biological grandparents. We celebrate birthdays together and holidays. Grandpa told me, 'We were afraid we'd lose three grandkids but instead we gained a daughter-in-law and her family.'" As a very busy young mother, Steinberg did not need to add activities into her life. But Allison Yohe Harmon, director of the ND Pageants, encouraged her to try out for the Mrs. ND International title. "When I talked to Keith about it he said, 'Why wouldn't you? You're beautiful. You're funny. You never do anything for yourself.'" Steinberg signed up and did not place in the 2013 contest. But she fell in love with the pageant. "I loved it! I met beautiful women. It was supportive and warm. My friend and stylist Cindy Mauritson, from Blonde Ambition, helps with my hair and makeup. With spray tans, rhinestones, and gorgeous clothes, what's not to love?" Steinberg ran in 2013 and won, making her the reigning Mrs. ND International 2014.


"The pageant system wants to strengthen and showcase the American woman," Steinberg said. "It is platform based and I chose adoption from foster care to run on. This is what God has called me to this year, something greater than myself. I wear a crown, speak at events and activities, and people listen to me."

They have changed our destiny and we have changed theirs

Steinberg said there are approximately 900 children in foster care, waiting to be adopted, in North Dakota. "If ever city in ND adopted one child they would all be adopted. Of the children who are not adopted and age out of foster care, 70% are in jail or dead within nine months. If we don't take care of the problems when a child is young, it will become a larger society problem. And if you adopt from foster care in ND, your expenses are 100% reimbursed. Yes, the system is cumbersome with legal hoops, but all the people involved in it wanted my kids to heal and be healthy. I can work with that." "Adoption isn't easy but it is good. It's good for me, it's good for my children, and it's good for the adopted child. They have changed our destiny and we have changed theirs. We are all a family now, with just enough grace for each day. " [AWM]

Rooth Varland, LCT Costume Designer & Head of the NDSU Theater Department

Public, and the May symposium “Playing on Common Ground: Theatre and the Complex Communities of the 21st Century.” The idea behind the symposium, according to LCT costume designer and Theatre Department head Rooth Varland, was that “theatre is a way of connecting people and providing a place for conversation and raising questions in the community.” Those who missed the spring events will have the opportunity to attend workshops and possibly a performance this fall due to a $50,000 Bush Foundation grant recently received by LCT for the purpose of continuing the work of the symposium. “In the symposium,” Varland said, “we were starting to play around with the model of bringing experts and community members together, and the grant will allow us to explore this further.” Through three “Common Ground” conversations—each with a cluster of activities—visiting experts, students, members of community organizations and the general public will explore the role of theatre in the community. “This ties right back into the heritage of the Little Country Theatre being an outreach program,” said Varland. Though dates and locations have not yet been finalized, organizers expect the “Common Ground” conversations to begin in November and take place on campus.

Theatre at NDSU: Connecting with the Community for 100 Years Gwendolyn Hoberg • Photography by Paul Flessland The 100th anniversary of the producing theatre at North Dakota State University—founded as the Little Country Theatre and now called LCT Productions—is a milestone not just the university but also the surrounding community can be proud of. Since its formation in 1914, this theatre has striven for enrichment and engagement beyond the NDSU student body and employees. Even in its yearlong centennial celebration, LCT Productions continues to promote theatre to as wide a community as it can. Many of the centennial events occurred last spring, including a February screening of The Past is Prologue: Celebrating 100 Years of Theatre at NDSU, a documentary coproduced with Prairie


LCT’s symposium garnered notable praise this past summer when Varland and Theatre B’s Brad Delzer, an NDSU theatre alum, gave a presentation about the symposium at a conference in San Diego. A representative from the national University Resident Theatre Association (URTA) who attended their session described the goal, design and format of the symposium as “mind-blowing.” Like many in the theatre world, Varland explained, people at URTA are searching for innovators in thinking and training. “Large theatres with resident companies are going away. It’s much more about small theatres springing up in response to a particular need at a particular time. That’s the reality of what the future of professional theatre is going to be.”

It’s a reality not all that different from aspects of the Fargo-area theatre scene in the 1910s. “One of the things our founder Alfred Arvold did,” Varland said, “was to go out and scout locations for natural amphitheatres built into the land.” These weren’t permanent structures, but existed for a short time as the environment allowed. “What a great way to think about the landscape, to re-envision it in that way,” admired Varland. Arvold also saw theatre as a place for developing language. In 1914, the majority of households in the Fargo area didn’t speak English as a first language, so it was common for students to come to the university with English as their second language. “Attending a play was community language practice,” Varland said, “and Arvold was deliberate about noticing that.” At the same time, the Little Country Theatre recognized different nationalities by producing tableaus (still scenes with no dialogue) with ethnic costumes. Today LCT Productions is equally eager to portray the community’s diversity. “When you take someone’s story and put it on stage, you’re validating their culture and their language, and it’s a way to open up communication,” Varland said. Other goals for the near future, as LCT enters what it hopes are its next 100 years, include starting a dance program and further establishing theatre as a form of community engagement that serves the region. “We’d like to be a national resource for that, especially practices that impact rural communities,” said Varland. “There are a lot of people doing this for urban areas, but not so much for rural areas.” It is work anyone can become involved in by attending the “Common Ground” conversations—and, as always, by going to the theatre. [AWM]

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illi Jo Zielinski's life and work have melded in a way that most people would not wish for. She has a driving compassion and understanding in her current job as President and CEO of Make-A-Wish North Dakota, in part, because of her own breast cancer journey.




By Jill N. Kandel Photography by Jill Ockhardt

orn in Redfield, SD, Zielinski participated in everything she could from music and theater to sports and volunteering. "My grandparents inspired me to be civic-minded and to create the kind of community I wanted to live in," Zielinski said. She moved to Fargo, graduated with a political science degree, and worked for a steel company while learning the fundamentals of small business. "I always enjoyed volunteer work," Zielinski said, "and became a Big Sister through the Big Brother Big Sister Program. I also helped the League of Women Voters and other causes. I was invited to be part of Project Tomorrow to envision what the FM area could be like by 2010. Later, I was recruited to become part of the implementation process of all the wonderful things that had been planned." Zielinski married Marc in 1996 and the couple decided they wanted to experience the ultimate volunteer opportunity and applied for the Peace Corps. "We signed up for a twenty-seven month tour and were accepted to go to Turkmenistan to work in business development." About half way through their Peace Corps assignment, the Twin Towers in NYC were attacked on 9/11. Zielinski and her husband were evacuated back to the United States. "It was difficult," Zielinski said, "We were immersed in the language and life of Turkmenistan and were pulled out very quickly." The couple moved to St. Paul where Zielinski worked for the Minnesota Legislature and Governor Pawlenty's transition team. When Marc got a job in Washington, D.C., Zielinski worked briefly for Congressman Jim Ramstad. "I worked right in the halls of Congress," Zielinski said. "It was great! We were in D.C. six and a half years. Serving as Governor Pawlenty's Deputy Director of Federal Affairs covering issues from health to education to military affairs comprised the bulk of my career there. Both our children were born in our nation's capital: our son Aurek and our daughter Ruby."


Billi with her husband and two children



y 2009, the Zielinski's wanted to live closer to family and moved back to St. Paul. When their son was ready to go into kindergarten, they decided to move back to Moorhead. "The week before we moved," Zielinski said, "I felt a lump in my breast. That same week, I learned that my aunt was dying from breast cancer. She passed away a few months later. I was in denial about the possibility that I might have breast cancer. I didn't go see anyone in the


medical field. But then in July, I decided, for peace of mind, to go see a doctor. I dreaded they would find something, and sure enough, the doctor found two distinct masses. I was scheduled for my first mammogram and ultrasound tests and was referred to the breast clinic at Sanford. They did more tests and I was told to expect the results by Monday." Zielinski was out at the lake when she got the call. "It was on Monday July 30, around noon," Zielinski said. "We were walking up the steps when the phone rang. I couldn't believe

it. Invasive Carcinoma. It just didn't sink in." Zielinski decided that she wanted to treat her cancer aggressively. "I had two small children. I wanted to live and see them grow up. So, I had four treatments of chemo, three surgeries, twelve more weeks of chemo, and finally thirty-three days of radiation." Zielinski said, "I thought I could still work while I had treatments, so I went to a job interview. I had lost my hair, but I put on my wig and tried to put on my best face. I was a little foggy and not confident in my own skin. I looked at myself in

the mirror and wondered who that was looking back at me. I had nine months of treatment still to go and there were surgeries ahead. I wouldn't have hired me." Zielinski changed her mind about working and spent much of 2013 taking extra time for recovery and to be with family and friends. Zielinski joined the Breast Friends support group that meets the first Wednesday of every month at the Moorhead Library. "I met these very strong, supportive women. Being faced with your own mortality doesn't go away. Some people just don't know how to talk to you or respond to you. The group was wonderful!" Zielinski was astounded by her home town support – raising thousands of dollars to help her cover medical costs. "They hosted a silent auction during a winter storm in February. I can't thank the community and those who provided auction items enough. Throughout my cancer journey there were so many small random acts of kindness and thoughtfulness that kept me going: gifts, cards, packages, and texts." On May 24, 2013, Zielinski finished her treatments and was ready to find a place in the FM area to contribute and go back to work. She was told there was a job opening at Make-A-Wish. "I just loved the idea and applied and was selected. There is the reason why I had to experience my own life-threatening illness. It created greater empathy in me for children and their families going through illness. I want to give them hope, strength and joy. I'm so thankful that I get to do what I do."

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As President and CEO of Make-A-Wish North Dakota, Zielinski overseas programming, operations and fundraising. A child with a life-threatening medical condition, between the ages of two-and-ahalf and eighteen, is potentially eligible for a wish. Most wish requests fall into five major categories: I wish to go, to be, to meet, to have, or to give.

Make-A-Wish began in 1980 when a boy named Chris, sick with leukemia, yearned to be a police officer. Through the kindness of friends and local police officers, Chris's dreams came true and he was given a tour, badge, uniform and hat, and became Arizona's first and only honorary DPS Officer. Chris was presented with his motorcycle officer's wings, and the next day, he passed away. Chris was seven years old. As Chris's story spread, interest in a wish-granting organization grew. In November of





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1980, Make-A-Wish became an official non-profit nationwide organization. "It's been more than 30 years since my son Chris received his wish, and I am still amazed and inspired how one little boy's dream to be a policeman has touched the lives of so many thousands of people." — Linda Pauling, mother of Chris, the boy whose wish inspired the founding of Make-A-Wish. Make-A-Wish North Dakota was founded in 1985 and is celebrating its 30th anniversary. Donors come from all walks of life. Some are people who know and love children dealing with various illnesses. Others say they've had healthy children and can't imagine what families dealing with heartbreaking illnesses are going though and they want to lend a helping hand. During the fiscal year 2014, the North Dakota chapter granted thirty-nine wishes to kids across the state. "The biggest misconception about Make-A-Wish," Zielinski said, "is that people think it is only for children who are terminally ill. This is not true. A lot of wish children go on to live healthy, happy lives." The referral process can be initiated by potential wish kids themselves, medical professionals, parents, legal guardians and family members with detailed knowledge of the child's current medical condition.







About half of all referrals come from parents. "We've had parents tell us that when someone comes and talks to them about Make-A-Wish they equated it with thinking their child is not going to live. I want people to understand that a child does not need to be terminally ill to be considered for a wish. An illness can be degenerative or malignant and may place the child’s life in jeopardy." Make-A-Wish can actually be a part of the child's recovery. The statistics and data point to the fact that a wish can be a real turning point in a child's illness recovery. "Children are more apt to adhere to treatment protocols when they have something to work towards," Zielinski said. "They often need to become stronger or healthier to experience their wish. It gives them something to hope for and to work toward. Optimism is a powerful tool. Everyone wants something to look forward to. We believe that a wish experience can be a gamechanger. This one belief guides us. It inspires us to grant wishes that change the lives of the kids we serve." "One of the things I learned having breast cancer, is that it's not just me that got cancer. It's hard on my kids and my husband, too," Zielinski said. "Being in this job, able to grant wishes to children, I know that it is not just the children that benefit. It helps the whole family. It builds good memories for the parents and the siblings, too."



Zielinski said she's also learned how resilient kids can be. "My kids wear the pink ribbons and know what it stands for. We didn't say, 'Mommy's sick.' We talked about me having breast cancer. I didn't want them to think that cancer was something they could catch." "My husband and I have been married 18 years. When you're married, you go through phases. Cancer is another part of our journey," Zielinski said. "I couldn't have done this without Marc. In some ways it's an individual journey that your partner isn't able to understand. In other ways, it's a journey that you need to walk through together. It can test one’s resolve. My body changed and so did my mind. I see my scars every day. I tell women to check themselves for lumps. It's something they can do themselves. I am a survivor. Every three months I go for routine appointments. I will be on medication for at least five years."

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"My cancerversary was on July 30," Zielinski said. "I was diagnosed two years ago. I have been both challenged and strengthened by my cancer. I am generally positive. But there are low points, and you don't know why, you can't explain it. You want to live. I have so much living to do. The fear that you might not be able to see your child graduate is very real. Mortality makes you look back, look at what your life has been. You start to live in your past. I've been there."


ut Zielinski also knows the power of hope, both for herself and for the children she works with at Make-A-Wish. "And now, after two years," she adds with a deep smile, "I'm finally allowing myself to dream again. I'm allowing myself to look forward." [AWM]

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Area Woman Magazine- Fargo, ND  

October.November 2014- Area Woman is the first known, free-released, women's interest magazine in the country.

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