River Valley Woman March 2023

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the goose phase in home décor during the 1990s? And everything was cornflower blue—welcome mats, pillows, and window blinds, as well as that pesky goose’s bonnet and bow tie. Among the many reasons I am glad the ’90s are over. Interior design has, before and since, run the gamut of country, modern, industrial, or no discernible style at all.

It’s hard to say why a certain look speaks to, or repulses, us. Perhaps what we are drawn to harkens back to our toddler years and what we could see at the time from our highchairs that made us feel comfortable and safe. Beyond my bowl of Trix cereal I saw geometric 1960s linoleum, base-lighted lamps, clean furniture lines, and atomic-patterned bathroom wall panels. Ahhh. Then I turned 10. Enter the 1970s and my bedroom’s maple floors were covered in yellow shag carpet and the cool kitchen flooring was obliterated by orange and brown patterned vinyl. Arrg.

Whether we like open concepts or cozy corners, there’s times when we just need some space. Jennifer Wanderscheid, our cover feature in this DIGS home and office issue, can work it out. Property manager for Workspace on 3, her job is as multi-faceted as she is. The building makes a home for your business or personal office, with all the extras one might need, and Jennifer’s role is to facilitate it all. As one of the tenants put it, Jennifer is the “secret sauce” of the workspace system, acting as proofreader, cheerleader, and human Rolodex. Sounds like ingredients for success.

Katelyn Flemming’s got plans. Literally. As lead designer for Kitchen, Baths and More projects, she’s also directing the look for the company’s new location,

and designing the interiors of the Siesta Hills Lifestyle Community. If that isn’t enough, Katelyn bought a 60+ year-old- house, and remodeled it with the modern style that she’s partial to. Katelyn rates double duty as a feature and our SPACES pages this month. I guess looks are everything.

Laney Pope thought she wanted a predictable life. Head to work, get a paycheck, maybe save a little, go on vacation, and know what’s around every corner. Then she and husband Grant bought a home to renovate—and an idea was planted. How about doing this as a business? Security, stability and consistency went out the window, and We Buy Houses, Southern MN was born kicking and screaming. But the vision, hard work and perseverance paid off. No surprises there.

I admit I am obsessed with home interiors, décor and design. I didn’t realize how far back it went from highchair days, to higher education years when my future husband and I dolled up our college apartment with a pole lamp hung horizontally as track lighting, and a bamboo shade as a room divider. Today our house and office is an eclectic mix of antique shop, Ikea and Facebook Marketplace finds, Target discoveries, and local furniture store scores. Along with a few family heirlooms thrown in. Oddly enough, we live in what is called the Goosetown area of New Ulm. But don’t expect me to paint anything cornflower blue any time soon.

OK, so you have your dream office or home. But dirt and clutter’s got your goose? Get Sherlyn Mendenhall of Save Your Achy Bones cleaning service, and Amy Topp of Simply Sorted on speed dial now, then relax in your clean and organized digs.

Take a gander through this issue, then honk if you love these river valley women!

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 4
38 8 14 26 18 20 MARCH | 2023 Contents Publisher: New Century Press Chief Operating Officer: Jim Hensley General Manager: Lisa Miller Please direct all editorial inquiries and suggestions to: Managing Editor: Eileen Madsen, 507.354.6158, emadsenrivervalleywoman@gmail.com Sales & Marketing Manager: Natasha Weis, 507.227.2545, weisnatasha@gmail.com Sales Team: Ruth Klossner, LuAnn Marti, Eileen Madsen Magazine & Ad Design: Exposure Creative Cover Photographer: Woller Photography River Valley Woman Magazine: New Ulm & Mankato, MN For advertising/editorial contact info and a list of newsstand locations visit rivervalleywoman.com River Valley Woman is published monthly and distributed free in the Minnesota River Valley area. The content used in this magazine is copyright 2023 River Valley Woman and may not be reprinted in part or in whole without written consent by the publisher. All articles and editorial material represent the opinions of the respective authors. The publisher reserves the right to edit, reject, or position any advertising. In the event of any error, River Valley Woman will rerun the incorrect part of the ad or cancel charges on the incorrect portion. 4 LATHER, RINSE, REPEAT Editor’s Column 8 JENNIFER WANDERSCHEID Workspace on 3 14 LANEY POPE We Buy Houses Southern MN 18 KATELYN FLEMMING Big Plans 20 SPACES A Modern Flair 26 SHERLYN MENDENHALL Save Your Achy Bones 28 EATS Tracy Klostermeyer 32 HOME SHOW Kate Nelson 36 ACIDS, ENZYMES & SCRUBS Emily Giddings 38 SOMETHING SPECIAL Amy Topp 40 PET ANESTHESIA Nicole Lueck, CVT 42 ASK A DOC Corinne Jordan 44 TODAY’S HYSTERECTOMY Mankato Clinic 46 GARDEN GAL Laura Schwarz 48 GO. BE. DO. CONNECT. 52 MUST HAVES 53 PANDEMIC POSITIVES Mayo Clinic 54 READER POLL Favorite Room
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As an entrepreneur, Jennifer Wanderscheid has come full circle. She found success in various ventures including making a name for herself in affiliate marketing in the late 1990s through websites she developed. Now she is helping other new entrepreneurs get off the ground as the property manager of Workspace on 3 in Mankato.

Wanderscheid first came to Mankato when she was eighteen years old as a freshman at Mankato State University. After getting married and starting a family in Mankato, Wanderscheid and her husband decided she would stay home with their children.

“Between my husband and I that is what we wanted to do, but money was tight,” Wanderscheid said.

It didn’t take long for Wanderscheid to morph from stay-at-home-mom to stay-at-home-entrepreneur. She began her first business providing in-home daycare to bring in extra money. According to Wanderscheid, doing inhome daycare was one of the hardest jobs she had ever done because the only adult contact she had was at drop off and pick up each day. She said at times it could be very isolating. That need for connection led to her next business venture.

The family had a home computer and one day got an AOL disk in the mail, a direct mail campaign offering customers hours of free internet service. Wanderscheid began to play around online and soon found ways to connect with other daycare providers through listservs and chatrooms, the equivalent of today’s Facebook feeds, according to Wanderscheid. She started a message board called mychildfun.com on which childcare providers could compare ideas and connect.

“I was an accidental entrepreneur, I’ll be honest,” Wanderscheid said. Although she never planned to be a web designer, other childcare providers kept coming to Wanderscheid and asking for resources and tools. “I was like, why don’t I put it on one of those webpage things and we’ll organize it by holiday or something.”

Her plan was a hit. Other providers and parents loved it. She started two websites, childfun.com and coloringbookfun.com, in order to help her group organize their shared crafts, curriculums and other resources.

During the Tickle Me Elmo craze, Wanderscheid contacted a company called eToys to see if she could put a link on her website to one of their popular toys. Before she knew it, she was receiving checks in the mail for affiliate marketing. People were coming to her website and buying products through the link. That’s when her online hobby became a job.

Eventually her advertisers and revenue streams began to build. For over sixteen years, Wanderscheid built and maintained a solid Internet community for parents, early childhood educators and childcare providers through those two websites. But what she was really good at was influencing people’s purchasing habits. Wanderscheid was an influencer before the term was even coined.

Through word of mouth and affiliate link placement, she was making a name for herself with the online community. She was even invited to various conferences to talk about affiliate marketing.

“Google wasn’t even a thing yet,” Wanderscheid said. “We did our thing on our corner of the Internet and all these moms just happened to find us.”

As Wanderscheid’s children grew, her interest in activities for children waned. She was able to sell her websites to another company and pursue other interests. Not long after, Wanderscheid purchased a photo booth machine called Selfie Station and created a business called Selfies to Go, dubbing herself The Capture Queen. For four years, she filled her nights, weekends and holidays providing a fun memory maker for weddings, proms, and other various events. 

9 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023

Wandersheid is happy to share lessons learned through her own experience and has several tips for new entrepreneurs.

You don’t have to do it alone. When Wanderscheid started her businesses, she didn’t know where to turn. She now realizes there are so many resources for small businesses.

“A lot of times, new business owners think they are all alone, but they aren’t,” Wanderscheid said. “I try to connect these newer entrepreneurs with some of the resources available.”

Not only can businesses access services of Small Business Development Centers, but they can contact their local chamber of commerce or economic development organizations. Even more than that, entrepreneurs can tap into the resources of fellow business owners.

Get into a networking group. According to Wanderscheid, she used to be shy, but putting herself out there in networking groups helped her to be more outgoing.

She also says oftentimes when business owners begin talking, they find ways to help each other make connections with others. For example, if you need help marketing, your buddy in business probably knows a guy.

“Workspace on 3 is a network of like-minded people that help each other out all the time,” Wanderscheid said. But there are also service groups and marketing groups that could benefit new business owners as well. Attend local events. According to Wanderscheid, the best way to market your business is to get out in the community and introduce yourself. Attending local events leads to relationship building and business is all about relationships.

“You need to have relationships to make a business work,” Wanderscheid said. “You can have the best idea in the world, but if you don’t have any relationships, nobody is going to want it.”

Wanderscheid enjoys the buzz and creative energy of starting a new business although she is done with that part of her life.

“Being at Workspace on 3 lets me still have a foot in the entrepreneur world without having to actually be in it,” Wanderscheid said. “It’s like I’ve come full circle from budding entrepreneur to teaching the new guard how to grow.”

As Wanderscheid would admit to anyone, being an entrepreneur is a lot of work, but it can all be worth it.

“The best thing about being an entrepreneur is that if you do it right, you can set your schedule so that you’re not tied to a desk for fifty hours a week and you can have more time with your family,” Wanderscheid said. “I don’t know anybody who doesn’t want that.”

The business was a success, but she came across a new concept that piqued her interest while on a Greater Mankato Growth Ambassador visit to a new business in Mankato. Through the visit, she learned about the shared office space Regus was providing in the new Profinium Building in downtown Mankato.

“Once I learned what this place was and what it could do for entrepreneurs I was just blown away,” Wanderscheid said. She wanted to have an office in the space. “I knew it was going to turn into something really cool and I wanted to be a part of it.”

Although she’d always had an entrepreneurial spirit, Wanderscheid was at a point in her life where she wanted to dedicate her nights and weekends back to her family. So, when the area manager position opened for Regus, Wanderscheid didn’t hesitate to apply.

A few years into her position, Tailwind Group Inc. took over management of the third floor of the Profinium Building and rebranded the shared office space to Workspace on 3. Wanderscheid became the property manager of the revamped office space system.

Workspace on 3 houses many types of business, from new businesses just entering the scene to established businesses wanting an image upgrade, to remote workers who don’t want to work at home alone, to downsized businesses that want the lowered responsibility of not managing or owning a building. They even offer virtual offices for those that aren’t ready to make the leap to a private office but need the credibility of a professional address.

Wanderscheid was given the flexibility to shape the space into what she believed would most benefit the tenants.

“As an entrepreneur and previous small business owner, I know how hard it is to be out on your own without any support,” she said. According to Wanderscheid, Workspace on 3 provides what every new business owner needs to be set up for success. More than just office space, they

provide receptionist services, furniture, internet, utilities, phone services, cleaning services, a shared kitchen area and so much more.

With those services, Workspace on 3 becomes an extension of their business. Wanderscheid and her support staff even entertain clients who are in the waiting room while the business owner is on the phone or with another client, or cover for a business owner who is out of the office by answering calls, or by providing paperwork that needs signing to clients.

“It’s amazing to watch what an entrepreneur can accomplish when they aren’t worried about all the day-to-day things,” Wanderscheid said.

Wanderscheid’s years of business experience has allowed her to become a resource for the fifty-one business owners sharing office space at Workspace on 3 including Reverend David Norman of Immigrant Connection at Celebrate Church of Mankato.

“Jennifer is the secret sauce of Workspace on 3,” Reverend Norman said. “She’s a proof-reader, caregiver, cheerleader, sounding board, confidant, and Rolodex all in one fun-loving package. When you’re starting up an organization or a business, you embrace the idea that ‘I can do this, I can make this happen.’ But then reality hits and you find you might be out of your depth. Jennifer’s the one who turns the ‘I’ to a ‘we’ and uses her energy and enthusiasm to quiet the shy ‘I think I can, I think I can’ refrain with a confident ‘I know you can, I know you can.’”

Going above and beyond for her tenants is what Wanderscheid does according to long-time tenant Tabitha Melvin, owner of PrimericaMelvin Firm. Along with being a welcoming presence at Workspace on 3, Wanderscheid has helped Melvin get connected in the community, has been a referral source for her business and has been an advocate for her success along the way.

“I know my business has grown tremendously because of her,” said Melvin. “She took the time to learn what I do and how I impact the community and I am forever grateful I found her and this space.” RVW

11 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023

Laney Pope grew up in a typical working family. The expectation was to get a decent job, collect a paycheck, save a little, take your vacation time, and keep your finances and your schedule consistent and predictable.

This may sound familiar to many and it is a reasonable and noble approach. However, there are some folks out there to whom this predictability doesn’t appeal. Some like to work outside the box.

And Laney married into a whole family of those who do.

Laney attended college in Mankato, with plans to become a dental hygienist, alongside her now husband, Grant, who majored in information technology. Both Waterville-Elysian-Morristown high school graduates, their future business started off rather unassumingly.

“To house ourselves, we bought a property that could be rented,” Pope explained, “We lived there and we rented to friends to help cover cost.”

During this time, Pope was plugging along towards her degree, while Grant was not so quietly dreaming up a business.

“Grant was constantly reading, listening to podcasts, and gathering whatever information he could about real-estate and property management,” Pope said.

Over time, he was able to identify the players within his own family and, all the while, the idea was slowly growing on Laney.

”He talked about it so passionately,” Pope said, “I could see his vison, but I was still struggling to wrap my head around the uncertainty of running your own business.”

However, after their first rental purchase, they bought another, and then another and then, We Buy Houses Southern Minnesota was born in 2016. It would take even more time to build sustainability.

Creating an independent business was a completely new experience for Laney. She had envisioned a college degree, followed by regular, predictable paychecks that were able to be put towards practical daily needs and desires.

“I was working full time, yet all our money was being reinvested back into the business,” Pope explained, “That was hard for me at times.”

Pope took solace in knowing the Grant came from a family that had already run a successful business. Kamp Dels, in Waterville, has been owned by Grant’s family since 1955.

“I knew I had to change my perspective on how I viewed work and money,” Laney said.

So, rather than buying the little extra things, they invested in their business. The couple had to accept that if it didn’t work out, they’d be back to square one.

“You have to ask yourselves, are we okay with that?” Pope said. Thankfully, for them, it has worked out and they now have assets build up, which Pope says makes it a lot easier and a whole lot less scary.

We Buy Houses Southern Minnesota offers an out for those who want or need to sell fast. With fair cash offers, and no fees or commissions, the Popes are able to secure properties swiftly. Then, they either fix up and flip the house or turn it over to their property management side of the business and it becomes a rental.

As things began to expand, Laney continued to work her full time job, while helping run and support a budding business.

“I was finally really seeing how this could all work,” she said, “However, it was a lot of work to make it happen.” 

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 14

 Initially a family affair, with Grant’s brothers also in the mix, the work has expanded and new team members have since joined. This has allowed the company to fine-tune individual responsibilities instead of the owners trying to do it all.

“It’s difficult because you want to run it like you want to run it,” Laney asserted, “But, you can’t do everything.”

This adjustment to delegating, rather than doing everything, was aptly timed. The couple welcomed a baby girl in December of last year which, of course, changed their relationship with balancing work and home.

In spite of those changes, Laney and the rest of the team remain deeply invested in the business. This stems from their love of their community and desire to create and maintain value in the area.

“The pandemic changed the experience of living in a larger city,” Pope asserted, “This has contributed to some small town regrowth.”

With many smaller communities struggling in the years leading up to 2020, the need to bring some homes and buildings back to life became apparent. The properties that We Buy Houses Southern Minnesota purchase definitely get a refresh.

“We want to bring life back into these homes and properties and keep our communities an attractive option for people to call home,” Laney said.

Grant and Laney’s desire to return to their hometown of Waterville stemmed from their passion to invest in and support a community that they value and respect. “We hope that what we do helps the area grow and thrive,” Pope said.

Laney realizes that the unpredictability will always be there when you are responsible for your own business. She also realizes that, as they grow, this responsibility is extended beyond their own families and into the families of those they employee.

This is again where Grant’s long family history of business ownership

“You have to just ride the wave and hang in there for the long haul,” Pope said, “Grant has assured me that is always balances out.”

Laney indicated that, seasonally, the winter months are a slower time. They have discovered through the process that it is important to make sure they have a good mix of fast income versus more long term investments.

“Flipping a house brings in the fast cash,” Pope explained, “The property management side is the long term, more dependable investment.”

This balance, done right, will help them ride the waves and also hopefully grow at a steady, yet manageable pace.

Laney also desires to keep balance in her family life by paying attention to both the short term and the long term.

“Yes, we want our business to grow and be successful, but we also know that takes a lot of time and effort,” she said, “We don’t want to work our lives away for some big potential pay-off years in the future.”

This is why Laney and her husband have always prioritized travel and fun, even while developing and managing a business. With yearly trips to Fort Myers, Florida, a destination bucket list, and their first road trip with baby coming up, the Pope’s are definitely not all work and no play.

Laney says they are also looking forward to being able to have more opportunities to give back to the community and have more community involvement.

“A huge part of what we want to do is to bring people into our southern Minnesota communities,” Pope said,” We want to share the benefits of what our towns have to offer.” RVW

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 16
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Katelyn Flemming has her hands full.

As lead designer for Eagle Lake-based Kitchen, Baths, and More (KBM), Flemming is not only designing the interiors of the Theuninck Construction homes in the new Siesta Hills Lifestyle Community just south of Mankato, but she’s designing her company’s new location in Mankato.

KBM has outgrown its Eagle Lake location and is relocating to the onetime Pontoon1/KIA dealerships on North Riverfront Drive in Mankato.

There the business will have more space, and an “in-town” presence. “We’re overcrowded here,” Katelyn said. “I have samples all over my office.”

She added, “Our new building will have a more modern look. I’m excited to see how we’ll grow. In Eagle Lake, we’re a destination location with not as much drive-by traffic. We should have a lot more on Riverfront.”

If reconstruction went as planned, KBM will make the move in early March.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 18
Story and Photos By RUTH KLOSSNER

Flemming planned the new 7,700 square foot location with plenty of space for each aspect of the company’s products. The spacious interior has lots of windows to show off the products.

“I was given the shell—I did the whole interior layout,” Flemming said. “Brunton Architects & Engineers of North Mankato did the exterior.”

KBM is a full service company, doing flooring, cabinetry, countertops, tile, blinds, and more. The firm’s designers also assist clients in choosing plumbing and lighting fixtures.

“We’re a full service design place,” Katelyn said.

Flemming has had many other projects on her plate, with the development of Siesta Hills. The 55-plus community off Highway 22, across from John Deere just south of Mankato, has 50 individual lots and 20 luxury town homes on the property. Katelyn is doing the design of all the Theuninck Construction homes, meeting with the home owners and selecting all the finishes.

About 15 homes are now being built or are in the pipeline, Flemming noted. Purchasers can build patio homes or walk-outs.

The 20 town homes will be in five four-plexes, with the units sold individually. Construction of a club house, pools, fitness center, and more will start soon. All that will keep Katelyn busy for some time.

Flemming has been with KBM for two-and-a-half years, joining owners Troy and his son Jake Schrom as the firm’s first college-degreed designer. In the time since, three more designers have been added.

Katelyn grew up on a farm near Janesville. After graduating from JWP High School in 2016, she headed to Minneapolis to pursue a degree in interior design. During her sophomore year, she did an internship with Johnson Interior Design, then during her junior year, she did an

eight-month internship with RSP Architects in the Twin Cities, working on commercial office buildings.

Even though COVID interrupted her senior year—sending her home to work online—she earned her degree in 2020. In August of that year, she saw a posting for the design position at KBM and started work there on September 20, 2020.

“My idea had been that, after COVID, I’d go back to the Twin Cities, but I didn’t have to,” Katelyn said. “It’s nice to be at a smaller place. It’s close knit, compared to RSP, which is a worldwide company.”

Katelyn sees both advantages and disadvantages of working in the area.

“I like the creative freedom here. I wouldn’t have been given the freedom to design the new building. It’s easier to voice my opinion. I work directly with contractors here—it’s nice to have that direct contact, it makes communication easier.”

On the other hand, Flemming noted that, in southern Minnesota, people’s design styles are pretty much the same.

“They all want the same thing so I feel like I’m doing the same things over and over,” she said. “But, I do get to do spec homes, as about 75 percent of my work is with contractors. I can be more creative there.” Katelyn purchased a house in Lower North Mankato and immediately started remodeling it with the help of boyfriend, Aaron Brau. (See SPACES story in this issue.)

Between them, Katelyn and Aaron have three dogs that they like to take on walks. Katelyn also enjoys cooking and cleaning, going fishing “up north,” and shopping. RVW

You can’t judge a book by its cover…nor a house by its exterior.

From the outside, one probably wouldn’t expect the modern touches that are inside the walls of this 1959 house. The interior design skills of owner Katelyn Flemming are evident throughout.

Flemming bought the house September 30, 2021. Just three days after closing, she enlisted the help of family members—and of her new boyfriend on her third or fourth date—to tear down a wall and start the project.

A plaster and sheet rock wall was the first thing to go, to open the kitchen into the living room. With help from an uncle who’s a carpenter, the area was reworked so no would know that there was ever a wall there.

With a rented floor sander, the family sanded the original wood floors so they could be stained and finished. Katelyn, her dad Darrel, and boyfriend Aaron painted the walls. An old closet organizer was ripped out and Darrel and mom Linda helped replace them to create two custom closets.

Tearing out the old kitchen cabinets took time but it allowed for a new layout that provided more counter space. New luxury vinyl flooring was laid in the kitchen and bath, and a new bathroom vanity put in.

While Katelyn wouldn’t recommend it, she used peel and stick wallpaper on three walls—one each in the entry, the bathroom, and the master bedroom.

“You can’t move it,” she said. But I love how it looks!”

The living room now has a feature wall for the TV, along with shelving, cabinet, and a bench top next to it. 

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 20
Katelyn applied peel and stick wallpaper to one wall of the bathroom— but doesn’t recommend it because of the difficulty getting it right. The bathroom before it was redone. Katelyn’s design touch is evident throughout her house.

As purchased, the kitchen and living room were divided by a wall— which Flemming immediately

 Outdoors, Katelyn, her dad, uncle, and boyfriend put in patio pavers, rock, shrubs, and dug around the house to slope it so that water runs away. Katelyn put in a garden last summer, growing watermelons, cantaloupe, green beans, lettuce, peppers, and tomatoes. Even with all that’s she’s accomplished, Flemming has more to do—she hasn’t touched the basement yet! RVW

The first step of construction was de-construction— removing the wall that separated the kitchen from the living room. removed. Although Flemming isn’t done redoing the master bedroom, she has added new touches, including peel and stick wallpaper on one wall. Many of the new touches that Katelyn added—including the table and chairs—came from Facebook Marketplace or Goodwill. Notice the opening directly into the living room, where the wall was removed. The living room is decorated in black and white—both in furnishings and in the woodwork. The kitchen was rearranged to make it handier and to offer more cabinet and countertop space. With bedroom closets behind the wall, Flemming created a “feature wall” for the TV—and added shelves, a cabinet, and a bench top next to it. When Katelyn purchased the house, the kitchen had basic white cabinets and a small island.
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Sherlyn Mendenhall had just started her new business and was looking for a name for it when her first customer, unknowingly, provided the spark.

“I was trying to get a name for my LLC when the very first client I had in Mankato wrote a Google review,” Sherlyn said. “She wrote, ‘This gal could…save your back and achy bones!’”

From that comment, Sherlyn named her new business Save Your Achy Bones Cleaning Services, LLC, in May 2018. Cleaning is a job that Mendenhall is well suited for. A native of the Philippines, Sherlyn earned an associate’s degree in hotel and restaurant management at the Manila Montessori International School of Technology in Hong Kong in 2005, then spent seven years as a home nanny in Hong Kong.

“I did cleaning there and I love to cook,” Sherlyn said.

She came to this area after meeting Michael Mendenhall. Before starting her cleaning service, Sherlyn worked as a grill cook in a restaurant and at the Asian wok station at MSU.

“I like to stay in the back,” she said.

“I’m kind of shy.”

Sherlyn also worked at the Vikings Training Camp the last year the team trained at MSU.

But, cleaning is her passion.

“I like to clean. It’s a service I can do for other people—and I’m good at it. I don’t have to learn it in school—I’ve been doing it since I was a nanny and I cleaned my grandmother’s house even before that.”

From a small start in Mankato, Mendenhall now provides cleaning services in a 30mile radius from the family’s home in St. Peter. She now has clients in Mankato, St. Peter, Le Center, Cleveland, Amboy, Mapleton, New Ulm, and St. James.

She averages about three cleanings a day during the week and has a commercial cleaning job in St. James on Saturdays.

“I have a lot of elderly clients—my oldest is a 90-year-old grandmother living by herself, Sherlyn said. “They know that I save their achy bones and their kids appreciate it.”

Sherlyn does all kinds of cleaning—deep clean, basic cleaning, condos, apartments, vacation rentals, property management, move-in, move-out, offices, commercial— and will do weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly cleaning.

She doesn’t mind cleaning toilets— getting them sparkling clean—but doesn’t like to do high windows. That might be because she’s short—only five-feet tall. She carries all her own equipment to jobs—vacuum, baskets, cleaning equipment, and a three-step ladder to help her reach things.

“It takes me at least three times back and forth from my car to get things in,” Sherlyn said.

With more clients reaching out to her, Mendenhall plans to hire two additional workers this spring.

“I want to expand my business more so I can teach others and serve the business as best as I can,” she said. RVW


Sherlyn, husband Michael Mendenhall, and daughter Penelope Belle moved to St. Peter from Mankato last summer.

They moved into a 4,000-square-foot stately home, built in 1900, near Minnesota Square Park. They continued the home’s use as The Lodge, Airbnb in St. Peter. The family lives in an apartment over the garage and makes the majority of the home available for guests.

The Lodge can accommodate 13 guests and has five bedrooms and two baths—and is dog friendly. Sherlyn’s job in housecleaning comes in handy in getting the home ready between guests.

Sherlyn’s mother and father still live in the Philippines but she has aunts and cousins in California and Hawaii. She would like to take Michael and Penelope to the Philippines to experience the culture.

In her free time, Sherlyn enjoys making soap, bath bombs, candles, scrunchies, and coasters. As a family, the Mendenhalls have taken part in trade shows in Mankato and Amboy.

27 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023
‘‘ ‘‘ 198384 America’s #1 car and home insurance company. Mankato | Mapleton Lake Crystal 507.345.3606
Sherlyn and Michael Mendenhall, and daughter Penelope.

We all eat food every day, so talking about food should be something you enjoy. What foods do you like? What foods have you stumped? What type of cuisine is scary for you to try at home? In this column, I want to invite you to ask me for ways to talk about and cook your food. Let’s go through all the parts that make up food, growth, recipes, processes, and learn about food itself. It can be a breakfast on the go, box lunches, a sophisticated meal for impressing the boss or a fun gathering to celebrate your favorite team’s big win. Let’s get started. Readers seeking culinary advice can contact Dear Chef Tracy by email to the River Valley Woman editor, emadsenrivervalleywoman@gmail.com Please put Dear Chef Tracy in the subject box.

To start, I’ve asked my sisters to give me a culinary question they’d like to have answered.

Dear Chef Tracy,

I have a head of cabbage that’s been sitting in my refrigerator for a couple weeks. What’s a recipe to help me use it up before it spoils?

A: Cabbage schnitzel. You can serve this as an entrée or a side dish. Add a squeeze of lemon and fresh dill for added brightness. Cabbage schnitzel can also be topped with a dollop of sour cream. While there are a few steps to this recipe, each one is simple, and the payoff is big. Cabbage schnitzel tastes little of cabbage and instead transforms into something savory, caramelized, meaty, and satisfying.



Gravy Ingredients

6 T vegetable oil, divided

8 oz. cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced

kosher salt, to taste

1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped

1/4 c. all-purpose flour

1/4 c. dry white wine

2 c. chicken or vegetable broth

1 sprig thyme or 1/4 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Mushroom Gravy Directions

In a medium pan over medium-high heat, heat 2 T oil. Add mushrooms and cook, tossing occasionally, until deeply browned, 12 to 15 minutes; season with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Transfer mushrooms to a plate.

In same pan over medium-high heat, heat remaining 4 T oil. Add onion and 1/2 tsp. salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in flour to form a thick paste and cook, stirring, until very pale gold in color and bubbles at bottom of pan, about 1 minute. Whisk in wine until combined, then whisk in broth, thyme, Worcestershire, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to mediumlow and simmer until reduced and thickened, 5 to 10 minutes.

Stir in mushrooms; season with salt if needed. Keep warm until ready to use.

Schnitzel Ingredients

1 head green cabbage

2 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, plus more

1 c. flour

5 large eggs, lightly beaten

2 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard

2 1/2 c. panko bread crumbs

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 to 2 c. vegetable oil, for frying

2 T fresh parsley, finely chopped

2 T fresh dill, finely chopped

Schnitzel Directions

Peel off loose outer cabbage leaves. Cut in half through root, then cut each half into 2 equal wedges. Cut 2 (1/2”-thick) cutlets from each wedge (for a total of 8), making sure each has some root stem attached to hold it together. (There will be a side wedge of disconnected cabbage leftover from each larger wedge; reserve for another use.)

Preheat oven to 200°. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Place a wire rack inside another baking sheet.

Place flour in a wide shallow dish. In a second shallow dish, beat eggs and mustard until blended. In a third shallow dish, combine panko, pepper, and 1/2 tsp. salt.

Season cabbage cutlets on both sides with 2 tsp. salt. Working one at a time, coat cutlet in flour, then dip into egg

mixture, rubbing all over cabbage to fully coat. Dredge in panko mixture, firmly pressing to adhere. Place breaded schnitzels on parchment-lined sheet.

Into a large, heavy pan, pour oil to a depth of 1/4”. Heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry or instant-read thermometer registers 350°. (A bread crumb dropped into oil should immediately sizzle.)

Working in batches, fry breaded schnitzels until golden brown on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully flip and fry, basting any pale patches with a spoonful of oil, until golden brown on the other side, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer to prepared rack; season with salt. Place in oven to keep warm. Repeat with remaining breaded schnitzel, adjusting heat to maintain oil temperature and adding more as needed.

Top with gravy and herbs and a spritz of lemon.

Next month I will offer some basics. How to organize yourself & your workspace. This will give you the confidence to execute your recipes. Also, some basic staples I have in my kitchen.

Don’t forget, send a note with your food thoughts or quandaries.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 28 EATS
29 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 212632 BEST AUT OB ODY SHOP Thank you from all of us for your continued support! Thanks again! ar umbled and ve BEST AUT OB ODY SHOP Thank you from all of us for your continued support! Thanks again! We arehumbled and very emoji-tional. 198706

MANKATO HILLTOP 507-625-9070

2010 Adams Street, Mankato, MN


410 S. Riverfront Drive, Mankato, MN

NEW ULM 507-354-8255

2015 S. Broadway Street, New Ulm, MN

ST. PETER 507-625-9070

1002 Old Minnesota Avenue, St. Peter, MN


Practicing safe medication storage while at home and on-the-go is important to ensure the safety of you and members of your family.

Here are some tips to help keep you and your family safe:

Put medicines up and away out of children’s reach and sight. Children are often curious and put things in their mouth. In the blink of an eye they can get into something that could hurt them.

Put medicines away every time.

Never leave a medication out even if you are going to give it again in a few hours.

Always close the child protective cap until it is locked and secure.

medication safety.

Teach children what medication is and why a parent or trusted adult should be the only one to give it to them.




Do you want to increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids?

The consumption of omega-3s reduces inflammation within our body, especially in our blood levels. Adding additional food and supplements with omega-3 can:

• Reduce triglycerides: Triglycerides are fats that circulate in our blood and narrow our arteries, which increases our risk of stroke, heart attack and even pancreatitis. Research has found that omega-3 fats may reduce triglycerides up to 50%. The American Heart Association recommends omega-3 fish oil supplements to help lower high triglycerides.

• Decrease blood pressure: With elevated blood pressure, your risk of heart attack, heart failure and kidney failure increase. Omega-3 supplements can affect cardiovascular health in a positive manner. Adding omega-3 supplements has shown to decrease both systolic (top number) and diastolic (bottom number) blood pressure.

• Provide immune system support: Adding in an omega-3 supplement may reduce inflammation within the body, which is connected with chronic disease overall. An omega-3 supplement may also have a beneficial effect in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, along with a possible decrease in the risk of breast cancer and colorectal cancer.

Omega-3 fats are beneficial in so many ways, and there is even research showing that intake can improve cognitive function and provide a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.



2 T Hy-Vee canola oil

2 T rice vinegar, or Hy-Vee Select white wine vinegar

2 tsp. fresh ginger, grated

1 tsp. Hy-Vee soy sauce

1 clove(s) garlic, minced

½ tsp. Hy-Vee honey


1 (1-lb.) fresh salmon fillet, or 4 (6 oz.) fresh salmon fillets, skinless

1 asparagus spears

2 T sesame oil

½ tsp. Hy-Vee kosher salt

¼ tsp. Hy-Vee black pepper

8 c. fresh baby spinach

¼ c. shallot, thinly sliced

1 pt. cherry tomatoes, halved 1 lemon, cut into wedges

1 Preheat a charcoal or gas grill with greased grill rack for direct cooking over medium heat. Prepare Ginger Vinaigrette; set aside until serving time.


Rinse salmon; pat dry. Snap off and discard woody bases from asparagus. Brush fish and asparagus with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Grill salmon and asparagus 8 minutes or until fish begins to flake with a fork (145 degrees) and asparagus is tender, carefully turning fish and asparagus once halfway through. 3 4

Toss together spinach, shallot, and tomatoes. Serve with salmon, asparagus and, if desired, lemon wedges. Drizzle with Ginger Vinaigrette.

Nutrition Facts per serving: 490 calories, 36g fat, 6g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 60mg cholesterol, 260mg sodium, 14g total carbohydrate, 6g dietary fiber, 6g sugars, 0g added sugars, 29g protein. Daily values: 40% iron, 60% vitamin D, 10% calcium, 20% potassium.

Want to know if your Omega-3 level is optimal?

Sign up for your free screening!

April Graff, MS, RD, LD - Hilltop Dietitian 507.625.9070 | AGraff@hy-vee.com Scan this QR code to find your Hy-Vee dietitian


Want to talk directly to the suppliers of products and services, or show off your top products to your community? Attend a home show! Home shows are conventions where businesses are able to exhibit their products to the public, and gives customers essential insight of goods they may want or need. They also provide a marketplace for the community to connect with local experts to change their daily lives whether its with a better living environment, an easyfix on a project, or an overall healthier lifestyle.

It’s easy to go on a business’s website and view products and helpful information, but there is nothing quite like getting to see the product in person – from the supplier themselves. Home shows tend to have products on display for people to view and sometimes test. Not only are Home Shows beneficial when it comes to viewing products in person, but you are also able to ask the suppliers any questions about their material or product! They are also great ways to show off your new innovation, products, or services. Attending a Home Show can help you stay up-to-date on the latest trends and technology, as well as keep you informed of businesses you may have not heard about in your community.

For busy people home shows can be an especially convenient event to attend. There are numerous businesses that participate in a home show, so you don’t have to go from building to building in various areas of your community or neighboring towns to get your shopping/information needs finished – it’s all in one place! Not only that, but you are able to compare your best options when searching for product.

Home shows are not only beneficial for attendees, but also those who are exhibiting their products! Showing your products at a home show allows you to communicate and network directly with your audience. Instead of relying only on advertising or social media, you can speak in-person to get to personally know the people who want to buy your products or services. Businesses also benefit by attracting new customers. If you are a new business, this is a great way to get your products out there! By exhibiting, you are boosting your business’s visibility amongst your community, which will bring you closer to reaching your goals. Rent a booth at your local home show and maximize your return on investment.

Finally, a home show is a great place to socialize with friends, neighbors and colleagues after a long winter, and to share tips, experiences and suggestions with others.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 32
KATE NELSON Communications & Programs Specialist New Ulm Area Chamber of Commerce
RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 34 New Ulm’s #1 Home Seller 2023 Small Business of the Year! 1227 N. Broadway • newulmrealestate.net • 507-233-7653 * per MLS for area 27 only * 216287 When you go with State Farm®, you get neighborly service and a local agent — all for a surprisingly great rate. Give us a call and get a quote today. We love being here to help in a community where people are making a difference everyday. Thank you for all you do! Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.® Your hometown home & auto team State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company State Farm Indemnity Company State Farm Fire and Casualty Company State Farm General Insurance Company; Bloomington, IL State Farm County Mutual Insurance Company of Texas State Farm Lloyds; Richardson, TX State Farm Florida Insurance Company; Winter Haven, FL 2001736 Don Sanderson Ins Agency Inc Don Sanderson, Agent 1600 N. Broadway St New Ulm, MN 56073 Bus: 507-354-8524 Bob Webb Insurance Agcy Inc Bob Webb, Agent 1300 South Broadway New Ulm, MN 56073 Bus: 507-354-3151 204226 New Ulm is a great day trip, weekend getaway, and of course a wonderful community in which to live. The City of Festivals is also a boutique shopping destination, a nature paradise along the river valley, and a great place to meet friends at the many restaurants, pubs, and parks. Come see what’s brewing!
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If your skin looks lackluster or seems more flakey than the snow falling outside, it is time to exfoliate! Exfoliation clears the layer of dead skin cells to accelerate cell renewal, bringing new healthy skin to the surface. You can do this with physical agents or chemical means. A combination of the two is often perfect for maintaining the radiant skin you are after.

What to Consider?

Exfoliation is critical for all skin types to maintain healthy, radiant skin and ensure optimal product absorption. Before you get started, consider the skin care products you already use. For example, exfoliating while using products such as prescription retinoid creams, or benzoyl peroxide may worsen dry skin, cause peeling, or trigger acne breakouts.

People with sensitive skin can have trouble exfoliating. Their skin tends to turn red and often gets itchy. Opt for gentle formulas and dial down physical exfoliation to once or twice a week.

Those with dry, or acne-prone, skin may prefer a washcloth and a mild chemical exfoliator, as physical exfoliation may be too irritating for this skin type.

With oily skin, you have much more freedom with exfoliation. Oliy skin can typically tolerate using both chemical and physical exfoliants and at a more potent formulation.

What do you use to exfoliate?

First things first, the goal is not to scrub your skin raw, but to gently exfoliate, use your finger tips with gentle pressure and let the physical exfoliant do the work; you’re not scrubbing the floor.

Start by washing your face and using a toner. This will loosen and lift dead cells to clear the way for better absorption of the products that follow.

Physical exfoliation relies on friction to manually dislodge and rid dead cells from the skin’s surface. It involves using an agent such as granules, a scrub, a brush, or buffing pads. Keep in mind that when using physical exfoliation, it is possible to overdo it. For some people, especially those with darker skin tones, more aggressive forms of exfoliation may result in dark spots on the skin. Avoid combining physical exfoliators, such as a cleansing scrub, when using a brush or pad. One to three times a week for a physical exfoliation is sufficient.

Chemical exfoliators, such as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), are natural substances that break down the “glue” that binds dead skin cells together, causing them to slough off.

Alpha Hydrox Acids significantly improve skin by helping to promote the production of collagen and elastin, lift excess pigment, clear out and refine pores, and help diminish the signs of aging. AHAs work by loosening the upper layers of skin to produce a micro-peeling effect, which helps fade dark spots, smooth out rough patches, and reduce the appearance of fine lines.

Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs) are fat-soluble chemical exfoliators rather than water-soluble. They can penetrate through the sebaceous follicles, diving deep into pores and helping to remove dirt, debris, and bacteria. The most common BHA is salicylic acid. It is anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and can deeply penetrate the follicle to force out acne impactions, making it an excellent choice for oily or acne-prone skin.

Mandelic acid is a favorite AHA for its multi-tasking abilities yet gentle action. Its larger molecular structure means it’s absorbed more slowly, making it a great option for sensitive skin. Additionally, its melanin-inhibiting properties make it an excellent brightener, and its antibacterial action makes it suitable for targeting acne.

Glycolic acid is mandelic’s more intense relative. Since it has the smallest molecular structure of the acids, it penetrates more quickly to rapidly improve tone and texture. This rapid penetration can make Glycolic acid irritating to some skin. A better option for sensitive or dry skin types might be lactic acid. This AHA has a slower, more surface-level approach.

Enzyme exfoliators help to break down the keratin in the skin’s upper layers, which helps it lift off anything dead. The enzymes digest the dead skin on your face! Three enzymes you’ll likely see pop up are Bromelain, extracted from pineapple, Papain, derived from papaya, and Cucurbita Pepo, the pumpkin enzyme. Enzyme exfoliators are suitable for all skin types. Since they are more gentle than hydroxy acids, they are very suitable for dry, sensitive, and mature skin.

The goal is NOT to turn flaming red or to feel the burn, but to gently assist your body’s natural exfoliation process for glowing skin. Exfoliation is just as necessary for maintaining healthy, radiant skin as it immediately gives skin a radiance boost that makes any complexion look less dull, weighted, and tired.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 36
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My name is Amy Topp.

I am a wife and a mom to three boys living on our family farm in Minnesota. I took my love for helping others, my passion for organizing and my dream of owning my own business and started Simply Sorted in January of 2022.


Don’t Let Clutter STEAL YOUR LIFE


If you are ready to tackle your clutter, I recommend that you start small so you don’t get overwhelmed or discouraged. Choose a small area that isn’t sentimental such as under the kitchen sink, bathroom or pantry. Have a bag for items to toss, another bag for donations and lastly a box for items that you want to keep but belong in a different area of your home. It is easy to get side tracked and forget what you were doing. Try not to leave the space until you complete your goal. Once you complete one small area, you’ll feel SO good that you’ll want to keep going! You might even start enjoying the process. Decluttering is life changing!

Downtime: Social Life:

Is it hard for you to invite people over to your home?

Do you have a hard time relaxing after a long busy day because you can never keep up with your to-do-list?

If you feel overwhelmed by the thought of decluttering on your own, then it is a good time to call a Professional Organizer. A Professional Organizer is someone who not only helps you organize your spaces but also helps you set up easy to follow systems to keep it organized. They are there to help you through the entire process. Professional organizers will work with you to decide what you want to keep, and to identify where unwanted items will go. They will create functional spaces that are easy to maintain.

Decluttering and getting organized isn’t always easy but it is so worth it. You will never regret organizing. You can do this. All you need to do is start and keep on going!

Do you buy duplicate things because you are always losing them?

Do you use your garage and basement as a catch all/ storage room instead of what it’s for? Clutter can be so overwhelming but you CAN gain control back over your life!

Decluttering and getting your home in order has so many benefits! Letting go of the excess things that fill your home will feel like a weight has been lifted off of your shoulders. Decluttering can improve your mood, lower your anxiety and improve productivity. Research has shown that there is a direct correlation between sleep deprivation and clutter in your sleeping environment. You will get a better night’s sleep by eliminating clutter in your bedroom. Getting organized will make your life easier and most importantly, you and your family will be happier.

Money: Usable Space: RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 38
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A Quick Look at Pet Anesthesia

Owning a pet, there are many scary things that we face—bills, ruined carpet, shredded couches and, of course, putting your pet under anesthesia.

Handing your pet off to someone you don’t know, worried that you are leaving them and worrying about general surgery complications, are all very reasonable concerns. We also tend to feel guilty about our role in the day.

The morning of surgery can be stressful, as it often starts with missing the most important meal of the day (and I don’t mean dessert). If I missed breakfast, you would for sure hear about it. This alone disrupts the morning routine for your pet and they are truly routine creatures. It makes us feel bad as their parents. We are not giving them something they want. We then drive to the vet clinic and hand them to a staff member who whisks them away. But what goes on behind the scenes? When your pet comes in for surgery, the doctor will do an exam to assess the health of the pet. Do they have a normal body temperature? Does their heart sound good? Do they seem to be hydrated? In many cases some form of bloodwork is run to help assess liver and kidney function.

In many cases, an oral premedication (such as Gabapentin or Trazodone) is given as well to help prevent pain and/or help with any stress the pet may be feeling. These medications take about 90 minutes to take effect and last six to eight hours. Sometimes these premedications are used to help relax the pet for basic things such as nail trims or grooming appointments. Studies have shown that when stress or pain is high, pets often require a higher rate of anesthesia and tend to have higher blood pressure.

After the bloodwork and initial exam, a protocol of anesthesia is decided by the veterinarian. Of course, we would love for the bloodwork to give us a 100% guarantee that the pet will do fine under anesthesia but, unfortunately, this does not catch underlying heart conditions or other genetic conditions.

Sedation occurs when we need to repair small wounds, some tumor removals, some aggressive nail trims, or other minor surgeries that do not require the pet to be under gas anesthesia. Often, this form of anesthesia is reversible, meaning that another medication can be given to reverse the sedative effects and help the patient wake up more quickly. Recovery from this form of sedation tends to be much quicker as well.

General anesthesia requires a gas anesthetic and oxygen. The pet will need to have an endotracheal tube placed into their trachea that will help protect their lungs and airways. This prevents any accidental inhalation of saliva, bacteria, water, or fluids of any kind. This tube is then hooked up to gas anesthesia and oxygen which is what keeps the pet sleeping for the surgery. An IV catheter will also likely be placed in a leg to deliver fluids that will help keep the pet’s blood pressure at a normal rate, as well as help the kidneys. The catheter also provides venous access in case of a medical emergency.

Pets under full anesthesia are very closely monitored. This often includes running a constant ECG that assesses the heart rhythms and can alert us to any abnormalities. Blood pressures are monitored to be sure they are within normal limits and their organs are tolerating the anesthesia. Oxygen levels and CO2 levels are monitored as well as their temperature. It is very normal for a pet’s temperature to drop while under anesthesia so monitoring their temperature is important as a warmer pet will recover faster.

Recovery is different for each individual and depends greatly on the form of anesthesia being used. A younger pet, even though they may have full sedation, will likely recover more quickly as their metabolism is faster. An older pet may take a few days to bounce back.

Some routine surgeries will have your pet leaving the clinic like it’s a Friday night after 5:00 p.m. and keeping them low key at home seems impossible. Longer, more in-depth procedures are likely to take a day or two for the pet to bounce back to their normal selves (similar to your college days). Some pets are more vocal the night after their surgery as they are dysphoric from the anesthesia itself. Regardless of the surgery, the pet does often need to be more “quiet” at home for seven to ten days. This means walks on a leash are appropriate BUT leaping and bounding through the backyard are not. The more of this activity that occurs, the more likely the pet is to tear an incision or cause internal bleeding.

Although the chance of complications are low, it does not always put mom and dad at ease. However, patient monitoring has come a long way. The procedure the pet is under for is likely far more beneficial than the risk of the anesthesia. Asking your veterinary staff questions about the anesthesia and their plan will help you feel more involved and hopefully less worried.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 40
NICOLE LUECK, CVT MN Valley Pet Hospital Mankato




River’s Edge Hospital uses state-of-theart equipment to provide a variety of laboratory clinical testing to diagnose, monitor and prevent disease. And for your convenience, Direct Access Testing (DAT) is available so you can receive commonly asked for tests without an order from your physician. No appointment necessary!

DAT Walk-in testing

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1900 North Sunrise Drive (507) 931-2200 | www.REHC.org 507.233.8889 2525 S Broadway Street New Ulm, MN 56073

When should I start getting mammograms?

This seems like such an easy question but, unfortunately, the answer is complicated. Not everyone has the same risk for having a breast cancer diagnosis due to variations in family history, environmental exposures, breast density, behavioral factors, and medical history. Because of these variations, some people may be screening too frequently, while others not enough. In an ideal world, you would meet with your provider and determine your personal risk, and a breast cancer screening plan would be tailored just for you. Given the structure of our current medical system, this is not possible and our screening recommendations are based on large population studies that lead to guidelines for women of “average risk.” Again, this means some are not being screened enough, while others may be too frequently. Your options are to start having screening mammograms at age 40 (or anytime in your 40s), or to start having screening mammograms at age 50. Here are some things to consider when making the right choice for you.

Mammograms can find cancers early, when they are still treatable with surgery alone and may not require chemotherapy. Studies show that early detection saves lives, and women who have mammograms are less likely to die from breast cancer.

As you age, your risk of having breast cancer increases. Women ages 50-70 tend to have the highest risk, and are more likely to benefit from having screening mammograms than women in their 40s. However, age is not the only determinate of your overall risk and women of higher risk should be screening in their 40s (or even younger in some cases).

Mammograms can be read as “abnormal,” leading to further imaging and biopsies. In some cases, these “abnormal” findings will be benign (called a “false positive”). These call backs and biopsies can cause anxiety and distrust in the medical system over time. Women with dense breast tissue may be called back more frequently than women with less dense breast tissue. Women with dense breast tissue tend to be younger, and breast tissue becomes more fatty as we age.

If you have health problems that would prevent you from being eligible to receive breast cancer treatment, or if you would not be willing to pursue treatment if it was recommended for you, then there may not be a good reason to have a mammogram. If your life expectancy is less than 10 years, you should stop screening.

Mammograms can find cancers early, when they are small and may be more easily treated. Often, the lesions found on mammogram are too small to be felt on a physical exam. If a mammogram is not performed and a small cancer is allowed to grow, eventually you or your provider will feel a lump during a physical exam. Often this has allowed the disease to progress and it could spread to your lymph nodes, requiring more extensive treatment such as chemotherapy and radiation.

Early detection saves lives. Your breast cancer screening plan should be discussed with your provider and developed through shared decision making.

Stay healthy, friends!

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 42
43 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 229 BELGRADE AVENUE NORTH MANKATO P 507.720.0321 neutralgroundz.com SHOP OUR SHOP • SIP • EAT Spring is in the Air! custom olive oil FOR EVERY occasion Gifts 216866 224 St Andrews Dr, Mankato, MN 56001 • 507-625-3472 www.mcicarpetonemankato.com Store Hours: Mon-Wed 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thur 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. • Fri 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat 9 a.m. to Noon., Sunday Closed. — OTHER LOCATIONS IN WAITE PARK AND BAXTER — Flooring • Window Treatments • Cabinets • Countertops W hen your home is also your office, you need your floors to do double duty. Choose the strength, beauty, and ease of luxury vinyl. MCI Carpet One is the ONE for quality flooring, expert installation, and outstanding service. HomeOffice 216865 C&N Game Room Outlet, C&N Sales 1840 Commerce Dr., North Mankato, MN 507-387-6811 or 507-387-7986 www.cnnsales.com Dart Boards • Pool Tables Shuffleboards & Ping Pong Video Games And More! 216817 GAME ON

Not Your Grandma’s Hysterectomy

Each year, approximately 500,000 women in the U.S. undergo a hysterectomy for conditions such as chronic pain, fibroids, heavy bleeding, and uterine prolapse. Traditionally, recovery from an abdominal hysterectomy surgery can take from four to six weeks.

Every day in my practice, I see women who could benefit from a hysterectomy.

What if you could have a hysterectomy with less pain, a faster recovery, no visible scars, and no abdominal incisions at all?

That’s what the vNOTES surgical method, a new and advanced minimally invasive hysterectomy procedure can provide. vNOTES stands for vaginal natural orifice transluminal endoscopic surgery. Let’s break it down.

In the vNOTES procedure, your physician uses specialized instruments and a high-definition camera inserted through the vagina instead of creating abdominal incisions. This allows your physician to gain access to the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries to operate with the utmost precision and visualization without any visible scarring.

The abdomen is also inflated with carbon dioxide gas to give the surgeon the space needed to see and operate. This method enables the surgeon to operate at a lower carbon dioxide gas pressure. And research has shown that operating at a lower pressure is associated with reduced postoperative pain.

In traditional laparoscopic hysterectomies and robotic assisted laparoscopic hysterectomies—which are also minimally invasive approaches—three or four small incisions, known as trocar sites, are made. The same laparoscope as used for vNOTES is used to see inside the body, and the uterus is then removed through the laparoscopic trocar or vagina. It is rare that a larger three to six inch abdominal incision is needed. That is called an “open” or abdominal hysterectomy. That procedure is not considered minimally invasive.

Even compared to the traditional laparoscopic approach, vNOTES hysterectomies are proven to provide the following benefits to patients:

• No visible scars

• Less postoperative pain

• Less pain medication

• Faster recovery time

Best of all, patients do amazingly well after their surgery and can return quickly to their busy lives.

Whenever possible, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopists (AAGL) recommend vaginal hysterectomy as the approach of choice.

When appropriate, I recommend this method because it combines the benefits of the laparoscopic and vaginal approaches. It is the next advancement in minimally invasive surgery and does not require abdominal skin incisions.

The vNOTES procedure can also be used for other gynecologic surgeries, including bilateral salpingectomy (often called “getting your tubes tied”) to permanently prevent pregnancy. Other uses for this method include removal of a fallopian tube for treatment of an ectopic pregnancy, treatment of ovarian cysts, and pelvic floor reconstruction for pelvic organ prolapse.

Research shows that patients who know more about their surgery choices enjoy a better outcome and are happier with their results. To learn more, visit vNOTES.com.

Talk with your OB-GYN to see if this method is right for you.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 44
CARLA GOERISH, MD Mankato Clinic Obstetrics & Gynecology


Most Minnesota gardeners welcome the winter months. By the end of fall, we’re tired and sore and ready to get some good rest that’s not punctuated with anxiety over our unfinished garden tasks. But March 1 brings us that irrepressible urge to get started again. We monitor the weather forecasts more diligently than meteorologists, waiting for sunshine and night temperatures over 40 degrees Fahrenheit. We worship the lengthening daylight and whisper sweet nothings to our houseplants. Every puddle and swelling tree bud brings first-dayof-school style anticipation. We’re ready to garden again!

But, in March, it can be hard to know which gardening tasks are ok to start with. Is it too early? Can we work in the garden, or will we cause more harm than good? Will winter come back and ruin everything? (The answer to this last question is, unfortunately, “Probably.”) If you’ve already finished pruning your dormant trees and shrubs, ordering your flower and vegetable seeds, and potting up your dahlias and other tropical bulbs (to grow indoors, of course), then you’re ready for more tasks. I’ve come up with a few suggestions for early spring gardening, so we can start getting our hands dirty without making a mess of things.

Bulb protection

First things first, keep an eye out for your precious spring bulbs. I’m talking tulips, crocuses, and any other early spring perennial bulbs you might have planted in past years. The goal is to notice their emergence before any rabbits or deer make a hearty meal of them, which is especially likely to happen with tulips. If your garden usually experiences high pressure from deer and/or rabbits, the key to stopping them is prevention.

As soon as the first leaves break through the soil surface, protect them with either a physical barrier (such as fencing) or a repellent spray.

Most animal repellent sprays are contact-based, meaning they will only protect the parts of the plants that they touch directly. You’ll need to reapply as each bulb produces new growth, as well as after heavy rain showers. Deer-off, Liquid Fence, and Plantskydd are three contact rabbit/deer

repellents that I’ve used with varying success. It can help to rotate these products, too, in case your local fauna develops a tolerance to one of them.

Dividing perennials

If it’s an especially warm March, you might notice your perennials already breaking dormancy and coming back to greet you for the season. Once they’re partially above ground, it’s fine to start dividing and transplanting them. Perennials divided in the spring might be a little later to get growing than they would have had you left them undisturbed, but overall, spring division won’t affect their upcoming performance. The one exception to this rule is perennials that bloom in the spring, such as peonies or irises.

For a thorough guide to how and why we divide perennial plants, visit the University of Minnesota Extension at https://extension.umn.edu/planting-and-growing-guides/ dividing-perennials.

Removing protective caging

Removing cages and tree guards is also going to be a conditional task during March. If it’s currently warm enough that perennials are coming up and lawns are greening, then it’s safe to remove the protective caging from your tender trees, shrubs, and evergreens. You basically just want to wait until there are other food sources for the rabbits and deer. As soon as there are tender green shoots to eat, these pests will have limited interest in the bark and buds of our woody plants.

Leaving the leaves!

This is kind of a trick suggestion, because I’m strongly encouraging you not to act in this instance. I know you’re all dying to get your rakes out and show off how strong and efficient your raking muscles are, all in the name of Ultimate Garden Tidiness (of which I’m usually a total fan).

HOWEVER, it’s really important not to clean up your gardens right now. All of that messy leaf litter is currently home to countless pollinators and beneficial insects that are still overwintering under its protective warmth, and they need to keep hibernating until the night temperatures are consistently over 50 degrees. This doesn’t usually happen until mid-May, which means we have some more waiting to do.

If you’re truly unable to stop yourself from trimming and raking in the early spring, go ahead and collect last year’s stems and leaves—but don’t remove them from your yard. Instead, pile them somewhere else, maybe in a back corner of the garden that isn’t super high profile. This way, your hibernating insects have somewhere safe to finish their yearly slumber.

My final suggestion for this particular scenario is that you wait until the ground is fully thawed and mostly dried before you start tromping around in your gardens. When the soil is still wet and squishy, we gardeners can compact it and damage plant roots with our weight.

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 46
LAURA SCHWARZ New Ulm Native Minneapolis-based horticulturist & writer

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Editorial Contributions






To have your event listed, please email Ruth Klossner at cowladyruth@gmail.com by the 5th of the previous month. Listings are generally for events that are free to the public, or are fund-raisers. Listings will be published as space allows and at the discretion of the editor.

Fri, Mar 3

• Super Duos Presents The Music of Simon & Garfunkel, Paradise Center for the Arts, 321 Central Ave N, Faribault, 7:30 pm. Info: 507-332-7372 or Info@paradisecenterforthearts.org

• Jazz Jamboree, Bjorling Recital Hall, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 8 am-6 pm. Info: 507-933-7013.

Sat, Mar 4

• Bock Fest, Schell’s Brewery Grounds, 1860 Schell Rd, New Ulm, 11 am-4:30 pm. Info: 507354-5528 or schellsbrewery. com/events/bock-fest/.

• The Gambler Returns—Kenny Rogers Tribute, State Street Theater Co, 1 N State St, New Ulm, 7:30 pm. Info & tickets: statestreetnewulm.org, 507359-9990 or info@statestreetnewulm.org

• Friends of Rush River Fundraiser Dance, Event Center, Henderson, 8 pm-12 am. Info: hendersonmn.com/chatter1/.

• Mother Son Shamrock, LCWM Elementary School, Lake Crystal, 6:30-9 pm. Info & sign-up: lcwm. cr3.rschooltoday.com/public/ costoption/class_id/2496/public/1/sp/.

• ‘Fest’ Pub Crawl, 1707 S Minnesota St, New Ulm, 10:30 am. Info: 507-276-0883, 507-276-2200 or Facebook.

• Southern Minnesota’s Real Big Band Concert, Ylvisaker Theater, Bethany Lutheran College, 700 Luther Dr, Mankato, 7-9 pm. Info & tickets: 507-386-7003, mnktbierer@earthlink.net or TicketTailor.com.

Sat, Mar 4 & 25, Apr 8

• Bingo, Legion Friendship Hall, 715 N 3rd St, Nicollet, 4 pm. Info: American Legion Post #510 on Facebook, 507-225-3850 or nicolletamericanlegion.com.


Sat-Sun, Mar 4-5

• ‘Alice on Ice’ Figure Skating Show, Civic Center, New Ulm. 1 & 6 pm Sat, 1 pm Sun. Info: nuskate.org/iceshow/.

• Gun and Knife Show, Kato Ballroom, 200 Chestnut St, Mankato. 9 am-5 pm Sat, 9 am-3 pm Sun. Info: 763-754-7140, crocodile1@comcast.net or gunshows.com/Mankato-Gun-Knife-Show.

Tues, Mar 7

• Mingle with a Purpose Heels and All Networking & Development for Women, Turner Hall, New Ulm, 5 pm. Info & registration: 507-233-4300 or NewUlm. com.

• Social Security (& Taxes) 101, Washington Learning Center, New Ulm, 6-7:30 pm. Info: newulm.ce.eleyo.com/, 507-2338307 or cfleck@newulm.k12. mn.us

Thurs, Mar 9

• How to Easily Grow a Beautiful Pollinator Garden, Washington Learning Center, New Ulm, 7-8 pm. Info: newulm.ce.eleyo. com/, 507-233-8307 or cfleck@ newulm.k12.mn.us.

Fri, Mar 10 & 24 & Apr 14

• Starkeller Music Series, 2215 N Garden St, New Ulm, 6-7 pm. Info: schellsbrewery.com/brewery/starkeller/.

Fri, Mar 10

• Chicken Dinner, American Legion, 600 Co Rd 20, Lake Crystal, 5-7 pm. Info: lakecrystalchamber.com/events.

Fri-Sat, Mar 10-11

• Hub Club Farm Show, Civic Center, 1212 N Franklin St, New Ulm. 1-8 pm Fri, 9 am-4 pm Sat. Info: 507-217-7226, don@sandersonsf.com or farmcityhubclub. net.

Fri-Sun, Mar 10-12

• Mankato Home Show, Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center. 3-8 pm Fri, 9 am-5 pm Sat, 11 am-3 pm Sun. Info: mankatohomeshow.com, radiomankato@gmail.com.

Sat, Mar 11

• Harmonious Wail, Paradise Center for the Arts, 321 Central Ave N, Faribault, 7:30 pm. Info: 507-332-7372 or Info@paradisecenterforthearts.org

• March Madness Craft & Vendor Show, Best Western, New Ulm, 10 am-3 pm. Info: facebook. com/groups/nucraftevents or nucve.com.

• Ballet Folklorico Mexico Aztecha, State Street Theater Co, 1 N State St, New Ulm, 7 pm. Info: statestreetnewulm.org, 507359-9990 or info@statestreetnewulm.org

• Irish American Club of Southern Minnesota Annual St. Patrick’s Celebration, The Mill, 310 2nd Ave SW, Waseca, 10:30 am-11:55 pm. Info: Facebook.

Sat, Mar 11 & Apr 8

• Volunteer Resource Workday, Ney Nature Center, 28238 Nature Center Ln, Henderson, 9 am-12 pm. Info & sign-up: 507357-8580 or alex@neycenter. org

• Legion Made Rights, American Legion, New Ulm, 10 am-1 pm. Info: nuamericanlegion.com.

Sat-Sun, Mar 11-12

• New Ulm Trade Fair & Living History Event, Royal Oak Event Center, 301 20th St S, New Ulm. 9 am-5 pm Sat, 9 am-3 pm Sun. Info: 651-247-4733, memery@ newulmtradefair.com or newulmtradefair.com.

Sun, Mar 12

• Dad’s Belgian Waffle Prom Fundraiser, Public School, Nicollet, 9 am-1 pm. Info: Facebook.

Mon, Mar 13

• Honor Choir Evening Concert, Christ Chapel, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 6:30-8 pm. Info: 507-933-7013.

• Capitol Day Bus Trip to State Capitol regarding Oak Hills Nursing Home and all over greater Minnesota nursing homes. Info: 507-351-6498.

Mon, Mar 13 & 20 (2-part class)

• 8-Hour Senior Driver Refresher Course, CAST Senior Center, 600 N German St, New Ulm, 1-5 pm each day (2-part class). Info: 507354-3212, castnu@newulmtel. net or communityandseniorstogether.org.

Thurs, Mar 16

• Ivy House Spring Fundraiser— Help our Children Bloom, Best Western, New Ulm, 5-8:30 p.m. Info & tickets: trisha@ivyhousemn.org or ivyhousemn. org.

• Waseca Chamber of Commerce Farm & City Luncheon, Mill Event Center, 310 2nd Ave SW, Waseca, 11:45 am-1:30 pm. Info: 507-835-3260 or info@wasecachamber.com

• Lifelong Learner Lunch—Maple Syrup, Ney Nature Center, 28238 Nature Center Ln, Henderson, 12 pm. Info & registration: 507-357-8580 or info@ neycenter.org

Thurs-Sat, Mar 16-18

• North American Farm & Power Show, Four Seasons Centre, 18th St SE, Owatonna. 9 am-5 pm Thurs-Fri, 9 am-4 pm Sat. Info: 507-451-7970, tradexpo@ tradexpos.com or tradexpos. com.

Thurs-Sun, Mar 16-19

• Peewee A & AA State Hockey Tournaments, Civic Center, 1212 N Franklin St, New Ulm. Info: business.newulm.com/events/ details/state-hockey-tournaments-44188.

Fri, Mar 17

• Saint Patrick’s Day Parade, downtown New Ulm. Info: newulm.com/visitors-community/things-to-do/festivals/st-patricks-day-parade/.

• Saint Patrick’s Parade, Third Street, St Peter, 5:30 pm. Info: stpeterchamber.com.

Sat, Mar 18

• Big Little Hunting & Fishing Expo & Auction, McLeod Co Fairgrounds, 840 Century Ave, Hutchinson, 9 am-5:30 pm. Info:

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 48

320-583-3236, huntingmiracle@ gmail.com or ChristianDeerHunters.org.

Sun, Mar 19

• College Choir Homecoming Concert, Chapel of the Christ, Martin Luther College, 1995 Luther Ct, New Ulm, 3 pm.

• Gaylord Firefighters’ Pancake & Scrambled Egg Breakfast, Legion Club, Gaylord, 7 am-1 pm. Info: Facebook.

Wed-Sun, Mar 22-26

• Joe’s Camper Show, New Ulm Civic Center, 1212 N Franklin St, New Ulm. Info: 507-354-8106 or joescampers.com.

Thurs, Mar 23

• Teach with IMPACT—Your Actions Matter, August Schell Brewing Company, 1860 Schell’s Road, New Ulm, 6-8 pm. Info: impact@annvote.com or annvote.com/events/p/teach-withimpact-your-actions-matter.

Fri-Sun, Mar 24-26

• The KOWZ & KRUE Home & Recreation Show, Four Seasons Center, Steele Co Fairgrounds, Owatonna. 3-7 pm Fri, am-5 pm Sat, 11 am-3 pm Sun. Info: 507-835-3260 or info@wasecachamber.com.

Sat, Mar 25

• Tommy Ryman, Comedian, State Street Theater, 1 N State St, New Ulm, 7 pm. Info: statestreetnewulm.org, 507359-9990 or info@statestreetnewulm.org.

• ECFE Community Baby Shower, Washington Learning Center, New Ulm, 9:30-11 am. Info: Facebook, 507-233-8311 or newulm. k12.mn.us/ec/.

• Sam Ellefson Stand Up Comedy Taping, High School Auditorium, 1200 Roberts Rd SW, Hutchinson, 6 & 8:30 pm. Info & tickets: samellefsoncomedy@ gmail.com

• GWO, GWS & Chamber Winds Concert, Christ Chapel, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 1:30-3:30 pm. Info: 507933-7013.

Sun, Mar 26

• Hilltop Happenings, Hilltop Hall, 206 First St N, Montgomery, 4 pm. Info: wendyzaske@yahoo.

com or HilltopHall.wordpress. com

• ProMusica Minnesota: Brahms F Minor Piano Quintet, Chapel of the Christ, Martin Luther College, 1995 Luther Ct, New Ulm, 3 pm. Info: promusicamn.com, 507-205-2249 or promusica@ promusicamn.com

• Lucia Singers & Chapel Choir, Christ Chapel, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 1:30-3:30 pm. Info: 507-933-7013.

• All You Can Eat Omelet Breakfast, American Legion, 715 N 3rd St, Nicollet, 8:30 am-12 pm. Info: American Legion Post #510 on Facebook.

Tues, Mar 28

• Glencoe Concert Association Backtrack Vocals, City Center, Glencoe, 7 pm. Info: 612-8406308 or 320-864-5261.

Wed, Mar 29

• Career Expo, New Ulm High School, 1600 Oak St, New Ulm, 11 am-2:30 pm. Info: 507 2334304 or kate@newulm.com, chamber@newulm.com

Thurs, Mar 30

• Tell Me More—Notable Women of Brown County, NUCC/Best Western, 2101 S. Broadway St, New Ulm, 6 pm. Info & registration: 507-233-2621 or education@browncountyhistorymn. org

Fri, Mar 31

• LCARC Spring Carnival, Recreation Center, 621 W Nathan St, Lake Crystal, 6-8 pm. Info: Facebook.

Fri-Sat, Mar 31-Apr 1

• Home & Health Show, Civic Center, 1212 N Franklin St New Ulm. 3-8 pm Fri, 9 am-4 pm Sat. Info: 507-233-4300 or chamber@ newulm.com.

Sat, Apr 1

• Dad’s Belgian Waffles Brownton Days Fundraiser, Community Center, Brownton, 9:30 am-12:30 pm. Info: Facebook.

Fri, Apr 7

• Buffalo Lake Lions Fish Fry, Fire Hall, Buffalo Lake, 11 am-7 pm. Info: Facebook.

• Adult Prom Night Featuring Singer Tony Williams, Next

Chapter Winery, 16945 320th St, New Prague, 7-10 pm. Info: Facebook.

Sat, Apr 8

• Spring Fling Shop-N-Hop Craft & Vendor Show, Best Western, New Ulm, 10 am-3 pm. Info: nucve.com, newulmevents@ gmaill.com or Facebook.

Sat-Sun, Apr 8-9

• Geocaching for Bunny Baskets, Ney Nature Center, 28238 Nature Center Ln, Henderson, 10 am & 1 pm each day. Info & registration: 507-357-8580 or info@neycenter.org

Mon, Apr 10

• Senior Driver Refresher Course, CAST Sr Center, Rm 112, 600 N German St, New Ulm, 1-5 pm. Info & registration: 507-3543212, castnu@newulmtel.net or communityandseniorstogether. org.

Thurs, Apr 13

• The String Showdown—Hutch Concert Assn, CrossPoint Church, 1215 Roberts Rd SW, Hutchinson, 7-9 pm. Info: hutchconcert@gmail.com or 612-8406308 or 320-864-5261

Fri-Sat, Apr 14-15

• Grackle Days Craft/Vendor Event, The Warehouse, Winthrop. 6-9 pm Fri, 9 am-1 pm Sat. Info: Facebook.

Sat, Apr 15

• Gustavus Symphony Orchestra and Gustavus Jazz Home Concert, Björling Recital Hall, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 7:30-9:30 pm. Info: 507933-7013.

• Winsted Women’s Expo, Blue Note Ballroom-Bar & Restaurant, 320 3rd St S Winsted, 9 am-1 pm. Info: Facebook.

Tues, Apr 18

• Sibley County Senior Expo, UFC Berdan Center, Winthrop, 9 am-2 pm. Info: jdose@umn.edu or 507-237-4100.

• Hanging Basket Luncheon Benefit, Community Bldg, St James, 11 am-1 pm. Info: discoverstjamesmn.com/chamber/annual-events/#toggle-id-4.

• Concert by Vettern College Choir from Jonkoping, Sweden, Bernadotte Lutheran Church,

34122 515 Ave, Lafayette, 6 pm. Info: 507-240-0048 or cowladyruth@gmail.com

Wed, Apr 19

• Ingstad Minnesota Radio Network Comedy Tour, Best Western Plus, 2101 S Broadway St, New Ulm, 7:30-10 pm. Info & tickets: wheelerdealermn.com.

Thurs, Apr 20

• Teach with IMPACT—Your Thoughts Matter, August Schell Brewing Company, 1860 Schell’s Road, New Ulm, 6-8 pm. Info: impact@annvote.com or annvote.com/events/p/teach-withimpact-your-actions-matter.

• Lifelong Learner Lunch—Fascinating Fossils, Ney Nature Center, 28238 Nature Center Ln, Henderson, 12 pm. Info & registration: 507-357-8580 or info@ neycenter.org

Fri-Sat, Apr 21-22

• New Prague Prairie Quilters Quilt Show, 1300 E Main St, New Prague, 9 am Fri-4 pm Sat. Info: Facebook.

Fri & Sun, April 21 & 23

• The String Showdown—Hutch Concert Assn, CrossPoint Church, 1215 Roberts Rd SW, Hutchinson, 7-9 pm. Info: hutchconcert@gmail.com or 612-8406308 or 320-864-5261

Sat, Apr 22

• Church of Cash, State Street Theater, 1 N State St, New Ulm, 7 pm. Info: statestreetnewulm. org, 507-359-9990 or info@ statestreetnewulm.org.

• Wind Symphony Concert, Wittenberg Collegiate Center, Martin Luther College, 1995 Luther Court, New Ulm, 7:30 pm. Info: wurstemb@mlc-wels. edu or mlc-wels.edu/music/ensembles/wind-symphony/.

Sun, Apr 23

• Daddy Daughter Dance, Turner Hall, 102 S State St, New Ulm, 1-2:30 pm. Info & online tickets: 507-233-8311, abackous@ newulm.k12.mn.us or newulm. ce.eleyo.com.

• Brassworks, Björling Recital Hall, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, 3:30-5:30 pm. Info: 507933-7013.

49 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023
RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 50 For more information visit www.OrthoEdgeMN.com A total joint replacement program 059618 virtual tour siestahillsliving.com steve 507-327-8411 pete 507-381-0400 Owner is licensed Real Estate Agent 208406 208172 300 St Andrews Drive Suite 110 | Mankato mankatocommunitygroup.com | 507.345.1111 Each Weichert® franchised office is independently owned and operated. own MCICarpetOne. FromIn-HomeConsultations ExpertAdvice& $0 18 Month Special Financing Down Interest *Subject to credit approval. Minimum monthly payments required. See store for details. Sale Ends June 27, 2022 224 St Andrews Dr, Mankato, MN 56001 507-625-3472 • www.mcicarpetonemankato.com Store Hours: Mon-Wed 9am-6pm, Thurs 9am-7pm, Fri 9am-5pm, Sat 9am-3pm, Sun Closed 195515 CT-SPAD0118132509 YouareNEVERon your own with MCICarpetOne. 224StAndrewsDr.,MankatoMN 507-625-3472 www.mcicarpetonemankato.com StoreHours:Mon- Wed9am-6pm,Thurs9am-7pm,Fri9am-5pm,Sat 9am-3pm,Sunclosed Countertops 198584 198707 Auto Body Repair Auto Glass Repair & Replacement National Lifetime Limited Warranty 507.388.4895 1671 E Madison Ave Mankato 198427 *Side not included TuesdaySpecial 507-625-2695 HAMBURGER $350 $400 CHEESEBURGER 2030 ADAMS STREET, MANKATO • New Ulm 507-354-WASH (9274) www.thetunnelcarwash.com thetunnelcarwash@gmail.com 186858 Hwy 15 South • New Ulm, MN (507) 233-8823 www.JensenMotors.com Kerry CARS WITH Kerry Hoffman | Sales Associate CONNECTIONS Connections PROVIDING A LINK BETWEEN BUSINESS OWNERS AND THOUSANDS OF READERS EACH MONTH. POST OR PICK UP VIRTUAL BUSINESS CARDS HERE!
Mike Ogaard Chief Financial Officer 507-625-1551 Mankato | Amboy | Eagle Lake | Vernon Center cbfg.net 217096 www.georgescitymeats.com Our 43rd year of providing quality products & services! 189903 Nicollet, Minnesota 507-232-3502 M-F 8am – 5pm | Sat. 8am – 4pm BEEF JERKY SNACK STIX SUMMER SAUSAGE WIENERS BRATS & LANDJAEGGERS FRESH BEEF & PORK PRODUCTS 157483 New Ulm 507-233-8440 Madelia 507-642-8444 “YOUR HOME IS OUR BUSINESS” New Ulm 507-233-8440 Madelia 507-642-8444 “YOUR HOME IS OUR BUSINESS” Building Materials - Idea Showroom “YOUR HOME IS OUR BUSINESS” New Ulm 507-233-8440 Madelia 507-642-8444 1961 Premier Drive, Suite 340, Mankato 507-519-4016 | Fax 507-345-5023 adarahomehealth.com 184397 Candee Deichman, REALTOR® 507.327.5006 ASKCandee.com 198535 Candee. CALL TODAY! BlindsandMore.org 507-380-5019 212839 217028 Spinning Spools Quilt Shop Open Monday-Friday 10am-5pm, Saturday 10am-4pm SpinningSpoolsQuiltShop.com 106 South Minnesota, New Ulm 507.359.2896 FABRICS . BOOKS . PATTERNS SAMPLES . KITS . AURIFIL THREAD 184383 Mankato | Mapleton Lake Crystal 507.345.3606 216989 20765 Foley Road, Mankato, MN | 507.387.2434 | 507.726.2411 Sales • Service • Design • Installation 100681


5. Paint & Supplies

1. Outdoor Living

Gennius pergolas and retractable awnings create shade on demand keeping you cool and comfortable on the hottest days while blocking harmful UV rays. Blinds & More Window Coverings 507.380.5019 blindsandmore.org

2. Fit to Celebrate!

A memorable occasion calls for a perfectly fitted dress or gown. Re-sizing, custom alterations, rebeading and more will put the YOU in your uniquely special day. Pins and Needles Alterations 728 N. Riverfront Drive Mankato, MN 507.625.5163 katobears.com

3. Holland Bar Stool

Shop our selection of Holland

Bar Stools featuring high quality plating grade steel with an oven baked powder coating to resist scuffing, chipping, & peeling.

C&N Sales 1840 Commerce Dr. North Mankato, MN 507.387.7986 cnnsales.com

4. Leave your skin feeling soft & smooth Basin brings the relaxation of a spa to your home. With a refreshing line of sweetly scented bath bombs, scrubs and soaps that will help relieve your daily stresses. You can find Basin products at your Mankato Hy-Vee’s.


Mankato Hilltop


Mankato Riverfront 507.625.1107 New Ulm 507.354.8255 St. Peter 507.519.1910 hy-vee.com

At C&S Supply in Mankato we stock interior and exterior paints and stains from True Value as well as brush-on and spray paints from a variety of manufacturers. We carry a wide selection of step stools, step ladders and extension ladders. To help you make your next paint project a success, we can supply you with rollers, brushes, trays, drop cloths and most anything else you might need for your painting project. Ask us to match your colors with our color match computer. C&S Supply 1951 N. Riverfront Drive, Mankato, MN 507.387.1171 or 800.879.1938 candssupply.com

6. Renewal by Andersen

Windows: Professionally Installed by Schmidt Siding & Window

You can be confident in Renewal by Andersen® custom replacement windows, which are backed by one of the strongest transferable warranties in the industry. Soon you’ll be saying, “I love our new windows.” Schmidt Siding & Window expert crews install them all year round. Renewal by Andersen® windows are custom-made to fit within the exact space of an existing window. They are an easy, hassle-free way to enhance your home’s comfort and appearance without the major disruptions that often come with remodeling projects.

Schmidt Siding & Window 901 N 5th St. Mankato, MN 507.625.6412 schmidtmankato.com

7. Detox Today

A detox foot soak makes joint movement easier in the knees and elbows. It’s an alternative medicine option for people who suffer chronic lymphatic and bone pain. Detoxification also promotes weight loss, as it rids your body of crippling chemicals and raises your metabolism to higher levels. Body Concepts LLC 1615 N. Riverfront Dr. Mankato, MN 507.381.5467


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Preserving Pandemic Positives

The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic was a lifechanging event. From switching to remote work or school, to canceling long-anticipated events, the pandemic forced us to separate from loved ones to keep ourselves and others safe and healthy. Even our day-today activities changed dramatically. Almost overnight, we were forced to develop strategies to help us cope and move through this ever-changing situation.

Many of these adaptations and strategies strengthened relationships, improved self-care, and allowed us to step away from the hustle and bustle of life pre-pandemic. These are some of the healthy adaptations made:

• Spending more time with immediate family. We started movie nights, pizza nights, puzzle and game nights; and new holiday traditions and ways to celebrate life events, such as birthdays, weddings and graduations.

• Collaborating with others.

For some families, it meant creating “bubbles” so kids could study and play together.

• Learning new skills.

From taking up a new hobby to learning to play an instrument to mastering home repairs, we engaged and stretched our minds.

• Embracing homemade meals. Cooking and baking from scratch, and sharing those activities with family, introduced new dishes and renewed interest in healthy eating. Home gardens flourished and provided the satisfaction of raising and preparing our own produce.

• Exploring the outdoors.

When we had to stay socially distanced, being outdoors let us burn off cooped-up energy. Whether hiking, bike riding, camping, stargazing, birdwatching, or just watching a summer sunset, being in nature helped calm, relax, rejuvenate, and restore us during a trying time.

• Assessing our nests. Rooms were rearranged. Closets, basements, and garages were organized. Painting became the rage. New outdoor living spaces were created.

• Helping others.

From writing cards to checking up on an old friend, to doing yard work for an elderly neighbor, we elevated our random acts of kindness.

• Putting technology to work.

We moved online, ordering everything from groceries to furniture to holiday gifts. We met up with friends and families on apps. We also adapted to seeking physical and mental health care via technology.

We all have our own lists of how we coped. Now we’re transitioning from a time of not being able to do a lot, to a time that’s once again packed with too many things to do. And as disorienting as the locked-down life was, the in-full-swing life can be as well.

During the pandemic, we became skilled at self-care and giving ourselves time for what was enjoyable, inspirational, motivational, and restorative. You may have positives from the pandemic that you’d like to preserve, but determining which ones can be overwhelming.

Start by giving yourself permission not to do everything or say yes to every request. Remind yourself that everything isn’t going to get done, and that’s OK. It means letting some things go as you take on others.

With busy lives, that means prioritizing and planning, but not to the point of generating more stress:

• Look back at your pandemic positives. Think about why you liked them and why you would want to continue them. Just remembering how much you enjoyed something can shift your brain, motivate you and spur creativity.

• Examine what’s important long-term and how you want to fill your buckets. Ask if it’s helpful to you or just one more thing to do. If something is a “keeper,” think about how you can make a regular place for it in your life. Some things may be nobrainers, such as telehealth or online grocery ordering, which opens up time for something else.

• Do some brainstorming. You may not be able to keep all those pizza-movie-game nights going, but maybe you can set aside one night a week as family night. Rather than preparing elaborate meals together, pick one breakfast, lunch or dinner to gather in the kitchen. If one-on-one time is what you miss, maybe it’s spending more time at bedtime talking with your kids or sitting around a backyard fire pit making s’mores.

• Be flexible. Make a plan, but be ready to regroup. For some, setting an alert on your phone for “homemade pizza night” works. But if a meeting runs late, get carryout pizza to enjoy together. It takes about six months to solidify a new habit. Recognize that you haven’t lost all your pandemic positives, but they may not look quite the same. What’s important is that they still bring you satisfaction and fulfillment.

Among the positives, there’s the other side of COVID-19 that brought deaths, long-lasting illness, food and financial instability, stress, fear, and despair. These things aren’t easy to move on from. Check in with yourself, and be aware of your mental health. You don’t need to suffer alone. Contact a mental health professional, and seek the help you need to cope with the effects of the pandemic.

53 RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023


Our 4-season porch. I live in the country so I can see our beautiful outdoors, wildlife, sunrise and sunset, close the door to the rest of our home, watch TV if I want to, or have a cozy, quiet space for reading, praying, Pilates, or just plain thinking! I love it!


Our kitchen. It’s a bright, clean space where I start and end most days. We love to cook and bake.



My office. I have a shelf of houseplants which faces the couch so I can see them as I work. I love staying cozy with quilts and fleece so it’s my cat’s favorite room, too.


I adore my studio space! It's quirky, colorful, and creative— kinda like me! I can open it up to my kids to be creative with me or shut the doors and lock them out to work on projects alone while I listen to an audio book.



My library. I decided I’d rather have a room for books instead of a formal dining room that I barely use. I lined the walls with floor to ceiling bookshelves and added a comfy couch next to the window.


Our dining room - where we share family meals, gather for birthday cakes, play games, etc.


My bedroom. I have a recliner and an amazing view of our back woods and fields. So peaceful.


I love my kitchen! That is the space in our home that always brings people together. It’s the area of the house that we do a lot of life in. We have done a lot of celebrating, laughing, crying, singing, dancing, listening, and building relationships in there.


I have always been a fan of tap dancing on well tiled bathroom floors. All of the mirrors are great for perfecting a good step ball change and shuffling off to buffalo. The claw footed tub makes for an excellent cool down spot after all of the hoofing exertion.


My home office. I have a favorite corner I decorated with a lamp from my mom and antique table from my grandma, some old shelves from my grandma and my book shelf. It's a favorite place to sit and decompress.


My south porch! Natural lighting and my plants love it!

RIVER VALLEY WOMAN | march • 2023 54
An Employee Owned & Local Business Since 1957 Mankato's workwear HEADQUARTERS 184360 1951 N. Riverfront Drive • Mankato, MN 507-387-1171 • 1-800-879-1938 Mon-Fri: 8am-7pm Sat: 8am-5pm Sun: 11am-5pm A great in-stock selection of Carhartt®, Dickies® & Key® Year-Round Workwear. of Work Boots 10 BRANDS + Shop our large in-stock selection of Nurses Uniforms, Shoes & Medical Accessories. of Uniforms 9 BRANDS + of Shoes 4 BRANDS + WE SPECIALIZE IN BIG & TALL SIZES SPECIAL ORDERS ARE AVAILABLE CANDSSUPPLY.COM

“I am not going to sit here and watch the world go by.”

Deanna was just managing knee pain with cortisone shots until she returned from a trip to Vietnam & Cambodia. She consulted her doctor, Jesse Botker, and scheduled a double knee replacement. Now Deanna can go back to traveling without worry!

“It’s been wonderful! I can stand for hours and I am not in pain. I can walk and I am not in pain.”

See Deanna’s full story at www.rehc.org/news

Learn more at OrthoEdgeMN.com


River’s Edge Hospital has been recognized as a DNV GL Healthcare certified Orthopaedic Center of Excellence for:

• Hip & Knee Replacement

• Shoulder Surgery

• Spine Surgery

Plus, River’s Edge Hospital is top rated for patient experience!


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