Hia. School Pic.

Hiawatha School prob 1936-37

Hiawatha School Pic

Cod Cake Correction

Apologies to Viking readers who discovered the Lofoten Cod Cake recipe (p. 25) in our June issue was incorrect. Here’s one to try instead. I tested the following recipe last night in my own kitchen, and my family thought these cod cakes were very tasty! I used frozen cod, which worked fine. Just make sure the fish is completely thawed and excess moisture is blotted with paper towels. I’ve also reduced the amount of salt called for in the original recipe.

Cod Cakes

2¼ pounds cod filet
2 teaspoons salt
¾ cup whole milk
½ cup onion, finely chopped
chives (to taste)
2 tablespoons potato flour
freshly ground black pepper
oil and butter for frying

1. Put fish in food processor along with salt. Salt will act as a binder. Transfer to a bowl and add in the rest of the ingredients: milk, chopped onion, a few chives, potato flour and freshly ground pepper. Mix well.

2. Form the dough into patties. Heat oil (or half oil, half butter) over medium-high heat. Fry on both sides until golden brown. Drain on paper towels before serving.

Photo courtesy of Nancy Bundt.

New Year’s Resolutions in July

Better safe than sorry, I always say…herewith my New Year’s Resolutions in July.

Originally I’d planned to blog about last week’s family trip to Colorado. To celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary, my in-laws gathered their ‘clan’ for an extended stay at a lodge located a few miles from Rocky Mountain National Park.

My husband, our younger son (Andrew), and I joined the throng of siblings, spouses, grandchildren, assorted other relatives, and one brand-new fiancée (congrats Martha and Niels!)

The pictures illustrating this post are from some glorious hikes my husband and I took. I don’t have the heart to trot out a snowman graphic in July.

So far 2010 has been mixed bag, like most years I suppose. The good, the bad, and the sad all commingling. Perhaps I’m doing this year an injustice by listing resolutions with four months to go.

Perhaps not.

Next year I resolve to:

1. Keep the ‘lifestyle change’ momentum going. I welcomed this year with extra pounds, a foray into full-time freelancing, and total bewilderment at being 50. I can close my eyes and be instantly transported back to 15, the age Andrew turns in a couple weeks. Of course I can’t remember two days ago…. However, thanks to the local YMCA programs complete with wonderful instructors and my decision to let go of the word ‘diet’ and embrace the over-used (in our household) term ‘lifestyle change,’ I’ve dropped a little more than 20 pounds.

I fall off the wagon. A lot. There are probably skid marks on my derriere from so much ‘bouncing.’ But I climb back on because I want to be able to hike well into other decades.

2. Find the focus. For years, I had an index card push-pinned to the bulletin board in my home office with the word ‘FOCUS’ printed on it. I always told my reporting students to find the focus in their stories. The card was to help me remember to find the focus in the stories I was writing at the time with my partner/mother. When we moved two years ago, the card became a casualty of the packing. But I’m seriously thinking of making a new one. I need to find the focus.

3. Remember to do things I like, and remember what it is I like to do. That smacks of the self-absorption I vowed not to fall into when I started blogging. But this is about my not-quite-New Year’s- resolutions. Until last week, it had been close to 20 years since I’d hiked in Western mountains. For the few days we were in Colorado, we took full advantage of being able to hike in Rocky Mountain National Park. On that first day of hiking, one whiff of those pines instantly transported me back to the days when I was a ‘new’ faculty wife in Flagstaff, Arizona and joined a hiking group. Our members ranged in age from late 20’s (me) to mid-70’s (amazing former PE teachers who could hike switchbacks around me).

During those years Baby #1 came along and spent a lot of hiking trail time in a backpack, but then we moved cross-country, along came baby #2….demanding jobs, blah blah blah. I’ve always liked to walk but had forgotten just how much I enjoy hiking, truly enjoy it.

So my final ‘resolution’ for the rest of this year, next year, and all the years to come is to remember to enjoy life, embrace the ups and weather the downs, and not stagnate in the dull middle.

To paraphrase the Capra-esque angel Clarence: I really do have a wonderful life.

TSand and Logue Hater Sitting in a tree

No honor among theives. My two personal stalkers Logue Hater and T-Sand are having a little love fest over at the Times Daily forum. I guess when you're the bad guy youreally have no allies! It is funny watching those two asshats duke it out. Maybe someday they'll kiss and make up! These two are made for each other. TSand, self-loathing sex offender, and LogueHater, anonymous coward that does not have the balls to meet me in person. A match made in heaven!


Ironic statements from Mark Lunsford on plea deals


I was watching Fox News this morning when I saw notorious vigilante advocate Mark Lunsford on TV commenting on GA's repeal of certain sex offender laws. Listening to Mark Lunsford is never a pleasurable experience, but his goes off on plea deals piqued my interest:

Lunsford: "How many of these people that they're looking at, that were convicted of, uh, I guess if they want to call it a low grade crime against a child, how many of these were, uh, plea deals?... Anyways, you got these guys that are are convicted of crimes, that their crimes were actually worse but they made plea deals and got a lesser charge and conviction, so are these the people they are going to take off the registry? I don't think we need to start picking people off of it just because of what they were convicted for. I think once you're convicted, you're never going to be reformed and never in the history of man-mankind has anyone been be-been reformed."

This statement is very ironic. It was not too long ago his son, Joshua Lunsford, was arrested and tried for two felony charges of sexual molestation of a minor. Granted, the guy was 18 with a 14 year old girlfriend, but the fact remains it was a crime and a person without Lunsford's connections would be on the sex offender registry today. Joshua Lunsford pled to a misdemeanor charge of sexual conduct with a minor. Instead of receiving up to 18 months in jail, Joshia got 10 days, some rehab, and avoided the sex registry.


 If people who take plea dealscannot be rehabilitated and are a constant threat, what does that say about Joshua Lunsford, Mark's own son? If we all feel like Mark does, then that means we should put Joshua Lunsford on the registry? I guess we should keeep an eye on Joshua since he is an ever-present danger and cannot be rehabilitated.

Self-professed vigilante Barbara Farris Arrested for Fugitive Warrant


Karma is quite the bitch! Barbara Farris was your typical Floridiot, a self-professed vigilante with a crazy idea to get 15 minutes of fame-- she threatened to shut down a mobile home park that rents to registered sex offenders unless they agree to let this lady place cameras around the park to spy on them. Of course, in doing so, she forgot one minor detail. Unlike her targets, she was a FUGITIVE FROM JUSTICE. Cardinal rule #1 of running from the law is STAY OUT OF THE PUBLIC EYE!


A woman who led a charge to put up cameras at an Orlando trailer park to monitor sex offenders has been arrested.
Barbara Farris was arrested Thursday, and county jail records showed she was taken into custody, on a warrant from Alabama on a charge of menacing.
But details about the charge are not known.
Farris is the president of a group known as the Bee Squad, which tracks sex offenders around Central Florida.
She wanted to put up cameras at Lake Shore Village, where around 100 sex offenders live, because she said it's near a school bus stop. [/quote]

In case you are wondering what "Menacing" is:

(a) A person commits the crime of menacing if, by physical action, he intentionally places or attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious physical injury.
(b) Menacing is a Class B misdemeanor.
(Acts 1977, No. 607, p. 812, §2110.)
 In other words, Farris, a woman who was harassing and threatening people in Florida, had a fugitive warrant for harassing and threatening people in Alabama. 
 Florida unfortunately condones this kind of behavior. After all, Judy Cornett lives in Florida. But for now, the world is safer with one less vigilante scumbag off the street.

American Wins Holberg Prize

If you've seen the August issue of Viking magazine, then you've probably read our Q&A with Natalie Zemon Davis, the recent winner of Norway’s Holberg Prize. If you are looking for more information on Davis and her work, I encourage you to check out this New York Times blog post.

It's Festival Season

It’s high summer, and that means that there are events celebrating our Norwegian heritage happening all over North America. Two events featured in the July Viking calendar are coming up this weekend. The Hardanger Fiddle Association of America is holding its annual music and dance workshops in Dodgeville, Wis., July 22-26. Also, the city of Decorah, Iowa will celebrate its 44th annual Nordic Fest, July 22-24.

Each month, the Viking staff receives many submissions to be considered for our calendar. While we can only feature a few events, the Sons of Norway website provides a much more extensive calendar. Check it out to find some Nordic fun in your area this summer!

Image courtesy of Flickr user billrdio.

Amy Boxrud is editor of Viking magazine. She lives with her family in
Northfield, Minnesota,
where she’s a member of Nordmarka 1-585. Amy is a Nordic folk music enthusiast, and when she’s not working or parenting, she can often be found making music with friends.

Knitting Fever

When I was a college student living on a tight budget during a semester in Oslo, I tried to save money almost everywhere I could. Yarn, however, was another story. I was surrounded by knitters, yarn stores and gorgeous hand knit sweaters everywhere I went. And while the prices of most items in Norway seemed high, yarn felt like a relatively good value. I bought far too much of it and I knit constantly that year—at home, at school, even on the subway. What didn’t get knit up got shipped home.

My knitting habit stalled a bit after leaving Norway. While I began working, got married, and started a family, my yarn collected dust. When I moved into a home with much less storage space, I confronted my yarn affliction head on and donated much of it to the local weavers’ guild. For a full 10 years, the knitting virus has been dormant in my system.

But in the past few weeks that’s all changed. I’ve been working on the September issue of Viking and I’ve got knitting fever again. I can’t wait to hit the yarn store and start in on the projects we’ll be featuring from Ingebretsen’s and Yarn Garage.

If you’ve got the yarn bug like me, beware. You’ll find patterns, resources and—perhaps most dangerous of all—inspiration in the September issue of Viking!

Image courtesy of Flickr user The Real Estreya.

Amy Boxrud is editor of Viking magazine. She lives with her family in Northfield, Minnesota, where she’s a member of Nordmarka 1-585. Amy is a Nordic folk music enthusiast, and when she’s not working or parenting, she can often be found making music with friends.

Gratulerer med dagen, Kronprins Haakon!

Today is Crown Prince Haakon's 37th birthday! Join me and the rest of Sons of Norway in saying a heartfelt gratulerer med dagen!

A couple points of interest about this Norwegian Royal:

  • On birth he was named Prince Haakon Magnus but it was stressed in the announcement that he would go by the name Haakon.

  • He became Crown Prince Haakon when his father ascended to the crown as Harald V in 1991.

  • If Crown Prince Haakon becomes king as expected, he will be known as Haakon VIII of Norway.

“Not Quite a List Poem” or “The Dog Days of Blog Posts"

One of the best aspects of having poets for friends is being exposed to many different forms of the genre. List poems especially intrigue me. The poet itemizes something in a cohesive fashion, and the ending is significant.The structure of the words fairly sings. Originally what was going to follow was a list of random thoughts on July, but it wasn’t gonna be in tune.

As an aside, I went to one of those Facebook sites called “I Write Like” that checks what famous writer a person writes like by analyzing word choice and writing style and comparing them to those of famous writers. You paste in a sample of your writing so I ‘pasted’ in the first few paragraphs of my last blog post.

My analysis?

Bram Stoker. Yep, Dracula’s ‘daddy.’ Nuff said. Course my dh points out it’s my old-fashioned style. Tried another piece and got the bard…yes, that BARD…jolly olde England with the emphasis on OLDE.

Pretty much sums up July.

And I did have a pithy (okay, really pathetic) attempt at a list poem that started like this:


Fireworks flying forth, parachutes a dud

Friends gathered, food fine….

But I got sidetracked, which is just as well.

Think I’ll stick to prose and leave the poetry to the experts: the poets.

p.s. I just pasted in the first two graphs of this piece for analysis: H.P. Lovecraft.

The End

Absolute Zero United breaks own Amazon Boycott! Hypocrites.

I looks like Absolute Zero United has put an end to their pointless boycott of Amazon.com, a place they claimed "promoted pedophilia," despite the fact many anti-sex offender groups, like Parents for Megan's Law or John Walsh. I doubt you can call THEM pro-pedophile!

But the Amazon boycott is officially OVER. In fact, TSand/ Roar For Truth/ Clay Keys has admitted on his blog that Absolute Zero United has bought a copy of the book on Amazon.

Isn't it funny he ADMITS that Derek Logue does not make the claim in his book, while the only "evidence" he ever points to for his slander is a Wikisposure page? A page where TSand cannot even cut and paste accurately! TSand has an inability to report anything accurately, problably because he hasn't taken his meds, as he even stated himself:

He was kind enough, however, to provide advertizing for Once Fallen e-Book as well:

 Thanks for the free advertising! I'm sure Amazon thanks you for your business as well. And thank you Absolute Zero United for your patronage. I truly hope you learn something from my book! Maybe you'll finally see how stupid your way of thinking has been for over 4 years!

A New Type of Ecology

We all know Norway is often at the forefront of most any ecological topic of discussion. However I just came across a video that takes the country's commitment to sound ecological endeavors into a whole new arena.


That's right, apparently Norway is the first country to have an eco-prison.

Check it out here:

Anyone have any thoughts? Leave a comment and discuss it.

TSand gets a small dose of his own medicine

Hey Clay Keys! I see you're crying to your fellow pedo-enablers at Absolute Zero and at the Times Daily blog because someone passed along a little info on you at a local blog. It is obvious you didn't like it when someone does it to you, so why do it to others? Do us all a favor, Clay Keys, and get thee to a civil commitment center before you commit another sexual assault!

By the way Clay, I'm sure you'll get as much police attention as I got in filing suit against you and Trollanda. It is a double edged sword. How far do you want this petty feud to continue? Just think Clay, you're the reason I still fight these laws. Yup, I was going to retire but you decided to attack me. Face it Clay, you'll never win. PS: Looks like even AZU has tired of your incessant whining at their blog!

More Heritage Sites

In my time working with Viking magazine, no story has generated as many letters to the editor as our July “Hit the Road” feature. I shouldn’t be surprised to learn that Viking readers are passionate about sharing their heritage!

We knew our feature couldn’t possibly include all the Norwegian heritage stops in North America, so we ended the article by inviting readers to tell us about favorite spots in their area. We got a letter about the first Viking settlement at L’Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We also heard about the Kendall Colony in New York, where Cleng Peerson led the first group of Norwegian emigrants to the U.S. in 1825. And we got several letters from readers in Seattle, politely reminding us that their Leif Erikson statue had fallen off our map!

Thanks to all who have taken the time to write. If there are more great heritage sites out there that weren’t featured, I’d love to hear about them. Contact me at vikingeditor@mspcustomcontent.com.

Amy Boxrud is editor of Viking magazine. She lives with her family in Northfield, Minnesota, where she’s a member of Nordmarka 1-585. Amy is a Nordic folk music enthusiast, and when she’s not working or parenting, she can often be found making music with friends.

Is Oslo's Bysykkel Program in Jeopardy?

I found a real interesting article over at my favorite Norwegian news site (in English!), newsinenglish.no, about Oslo’s popular bysykkel program. Apparently the program is experiencing some difficulty due to vandalism and theft.

The reason I'm interested in this article is that Minneapolis, my fair city, has recently begun a similar program. In fact, there's a half dozen of these bikes stationed just across the street from the Sons of Norway headquarters.

I think this kind of offering is a great idea. It cuts down on traffic and pollution, while encouraging folks to be more active. However I have to wonder if we are having a similar experience? Does your city have a program like this? What's it like? Is it similar to Oslo's program? Leave a comment and let me know.

Since we're on the subject of bikes, have you seen this?

Bloviating Zepplin encourages gun violence

Bellowing blimp/ "bloviating zepplin" tries to save the Hindenburg by adding the first post at AZU in a month and a half. Unfotunately, it was only to pimp an idiotic You Tube video of women role-playing Thelma and Louise moments while inflated missing child statistics are shown. Thanks, BZ, for reminding us why we need to promote the Stop Vigilante Violence and Websites Act of 2010.

$30 omlette? Ouch!

These days I hear a lot of people complaining about the price of food (myself included). Everyone's grocery bill seems to be getting bigger, while their grocery bags are getting smaller. It can be frustrating, for sure.

But, it could be a lot worse.

According to the Statistics Norway website, Norway has the highest food prices in all of Europe! As of 2009, Norway's food and non-alcoholic beverages were 54% above the average price level of the 27 EU member countries. Milk, eggs and cheese products were as much as 70% higher (which is ironic considering that Norway was once a heavily rooted in agrarian society).

To put that in perspective, the other day I bought some groceries for a Saturday breakfast, including a loaf of white bread, a gallon of milk, bacon, a dozen eggs and some cheese. All told, I spent about $16. Now, had I made this purchase in Norway, my bill would have been closer to $27.

I guess I won't complain so much the next time I head to the supermarket.

Three New Reasons to Love Viking

If you’ve looked at your July issue of Viking, you’ve no doubt noticed the magazine’s new look and feel.

Check out the new Nordic Life department—formerly Nordic Lights—near the front of the magazine. In addition to the news and calendar listings you already enjoy, you’ll find a history column by Jeff Sauve, archivist for the Norwegian American Historical Association. You’ll also find “Spread the Word,” a bite-sized language lesson that introduces a Norwegian word or phrase each month. Nordic Life opens each month with a profile of an inspiring Norwegian or person of Norwegian descent. And who better to grace our inaugural profile page than Leif Ove Andsnes, Norway’s renowned classical pianist?

The Viking staff is proud of the publication’s redesign, and we hope you like it, too! We welcome your input by contacting us at vikingeditor@mspcommunications.com.

PS: If you’re a fan of Andsnes, you’ll enjoy this clip of his performance of Greig’s Piano Concerto at the 2006 BBC Proms Classical Musical Festival.

Amy Boxrud is editor of Viking magazine. She lives with her family in Northfield, Minnesota, where she’s a member of Nordmarka 1-585. Amy is a Nordic folk music enthusiast, and when she’s not working or parenting, she can often be found making music with friends.