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COLUMN: Existing alone yet always in contact

COLUMN: Existing alone yet always in contact

WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- I was a teenager in a time when a giant cell phone in a leather bag was the latest in communication technology. My parents would unplug it from the cigarette lighter in their minivan and detach the giant magnetic antenna from the roof only for me to reassemble the configuration in my 1983 Ford LTD before heading out to a football game with instructions to call before I left town.

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Even a moment of movement at work can help decrease stress, keep you fit

Even a moment of movement at work can help decrease stress, keep you fit

FARGO, N.D. – Just a minute or two of movement can make all the difference in energy and stress levels among employees, say Ann Dolence and Carolyn Espel. The local women are the co-founders of Wellday at Work, a subscription Web application that features more than 100 videos, each one to two minutes long, that demonstrate yoga or other fitness-inspired moves employees can do in their workplace. It also includes nutritional information from North Dakota State University Extension and daily tips. A related Windows-based app lets users schedule reminders to take movement breaks during the day.

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A family calling: Couple’s sons are among nearly 300 international adoptions in North Dakota since 1999

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- At Calvary Lutheran Church in Grand Forks, a young Ethiopian boy recently recalled his first impression of seeing snow in North Dakota. “It was cold,” said Jonas Adams, 11. “We built snowmen.” The story of how he and his younger brother, Nate, arrived here involves nearly three years of paperwork, international visits and a rollercoaster of emotions felt by his new adoptive parents, Kim and Dave Adams of Grand Forks.

Speaking out for Tom: After losing soldier son to suicide, Jamestown family seeks to dispel stigmas

Speaking out for Tom: After losing soldier son to suicide, Jamestown family seeks to dispel stigmas

JAMESTOWN, N.D. Beth Doyle-Lautt has gotten used to the clutter in her house. A basement room is filled with boxes and totes, tools and extra furniture.

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Clarity can be elusive in accusations of child abuse

FARGO – Many said it was clear-cut child abuse when Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson used a tree branch to discipline his 4-year-old son, causing cuts and bruises.

COMING HOME: Our village grows with us

WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- We all know the old saying “It takes a village,” usually said in regard to raising children, the support and the diversity of influences a kid needs to grow up and become a nice, well-rounded adult human being.

COLUMN: Our flares aren't that bad

COLUMN: Our flares aren't that bad

WILLISTON, N.D. - The Bakken region catches a lot of flak about our flares. When you pump oil, natural gas is a natural byproduct, and at this point it is not cost effective to capture it. So we just let it burn 24/7. The environmentalist and Al Gore types continue to badger us because of the waste of energy, pollution of our air and the possible long-term effects of all this gas everywhere. Believe me, we are working 24/7 on ways to capture this very valuable commodity to offset our winter temps of 40 below zero.

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COLUMN: Rekindle passions after long seasons of work

COLUMN: Rekindle passions after long seasons of work

WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- The sun is slower to rise, and the leaves on the ash trees in the coulees are starting to give in to cooler weather. I’m sitting in my big chair watching the branches bob and sway to a chilly wind. It rained last night. In a few weeks it could be snow. So we are digging out sweaters and switching the thermostat over, putting on socks and eating dinner before 10 p.m. because the sun is down by 9. Yes, it’s September, and the weather is preparing us. It’s September, and it’s time to make those plums into jelly.

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Finding 'a different route': Strategic plan in place for ND scenic byways

Robin Reynolds owns a small business in Hebron, a southwest North Dakota town along Highway 10 about 2 miles off of Interstate 94. Like so many other small towns in the state, Hebron has seen busier times. "When the interstate came in, these small towns emptied out," Reynolds said. Since the Old Red/Old Ten Scenic Byway was established in 2008 through the state's Scenic Byway Program, Reynolds said the towns along Highway 10 have benefited from tourists who have abided by the byway's motto and taken "a different route."

COMING HOME: How did we all get here, anyway?

WATFORD CITY. N.D. -- I was standing on the little stage in front of the dance floor in my hometown’s American Legion Club. The new band was together to get footage for a music video for a song about Boomtown.

Seasons change, even if we don’t want them to

Seasons change, even if we don’t want them to

WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- The wild plums are ripening in the brush patch below our house. Just a few months ago those thorny branches were covered in white, soft blossoms bursting with excitement at the announcement that winter was officially over. Now those plump purple berries are whispering something about fall, but I’m not sure I’m ready to hear it.

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Does North Dakota need more parks?

Does North Dakota need more parks?

Backers of conservation measure cite N.D’s second-to-last ranking in state park acreage; opponents say better avenues exist for funding new parks
BISMARCK, N.D. – Backers of a proposed conservation fund are shining the spotlight on North Dakota’s second-to-last ranking in state park acreage and the fact it hasn’t added a new state park since the 1980s as examples of why the growing state needs to spend more on parks and recreation. “When you look at the stats ... it really substantiates that we have not done a whole lot,” said Steve Adair, chairman of the sponsoring committee that has turned in signatures and is waiting for the Clean Water, Wildlife and Parks amendment to be approved for the Nov. 4 ballot.

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COMING HOME: Get to know your neighbors, strangers

WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- Did you know out in the middle of North Dakota, just above the shore of Lake Sakakawea, there’s a family who stripped and refinished the wood floors of their old barn specifically for dancing?

Stories from Williston

Stories from Williston

WILLISTON, N.D. — Everyone in this town seems to have a story. From a hotel receptionist from Kenya to a pre-med major from Georgia working on an oil rig, Williston has a bit of everything, and everybody.

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WILLISTON ... LIVING THE DREAM: No easy money

WILLISTON ... LIVING THE DREAM: No easy money

WILLISTON, N.D. - Yes the opportunities are great here in The Oil Patch, and one can make a six-figure income, but you do need to work ... maybe even 70 to 100 hours a week. Folks don't come here to endure 40-below wind chills, just so that they can work a 40-hour week and spend afternoons watching Oprah reruns. There ain't no easy money. I consistently convey to my twin 17-year-old sons that with a strong work ethic and goals they have the opportunity to retire at 30.

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