“Honey, Please Take Me to the Meatball Dinner at the Church…”

Where can you go to get a good meatball these days? Mother Goose searched high and low for the perfect meatball dinner, and finally found it. Just thirty-six miles northwest of Bemidji, Minnesota near the village of Debs, we just happened to run into this quaint sign by the side of the country road:

Well, heck yeah, we followed the arrow!

And the arrow led us right up to the Trinity Lutheran Church where they were in the midst of their 31st Annual Meatball Dinner. Imagine our great delight to just run across this sweet little church in the middle of the northern Minnesota woods.

The steeple is brand new at Trinity Lutheran Church — the meatball recipe is old, tried and true.

Oh Mother Goose is just kidding, again. We knew when we left home that we’d eventually end up here at the meatball dinner. It was part of our grand scheme to surprise as many family members as possible. We walked surreptitiously up to the church looking for Dad.

He looked right at me; he looked right through me; he looked somewhere else. We were absolutely the last people on the planet that he expected to see at his church that day.

Finally, Mother Goose got right in his face and said “Hi, Dad!” (What else could I possibly say?) Then he realized that his daughters, his son and all their families were actually right there in front of him. Unlike my sister at her emotional surprise event, he kept his composure. Nate is known far and wide for his stoical nature. Ever nonplussed, his reaction was a simple, “Well, hi there. What are you doing here?”

Here’s the father of Mother Goose posing with three of his grand-goose-children. [He’s the one with the great hair…]

Dad took a break from his job as parking lot attendant. Earlier in the morning, he helped to peel three hundred pounds of potatoes.

It’s a wonderful community event, attracting meatball lovers from all around the region — Lutherans and non-Lutherans alike enjoy meatballs and gravy on mashed taters with a plethora of salad and veggie side dishes including beets…

And then a sweet young lady came around to the tables with her dessert tray laden with strawberry shortcake, apple pie slices, rhubarb upside-down cake and various cookies and bars. Believe it or not, Mother Goose does not have one picture of the food. She was too busy stuffing it into her mouth.

Here’s a candid picture of Brother Goose and Loon Goose enjoying their meatball dinner with side dishes. By the way, they drove two and one-half hours on their Harley-Davidson motorcycle to get to this amazingly delicious church dinner. Along the way, Loon peeked over Dana’s shoulder to look at the truck in front of them and promptly received a stone smashing into her nose and mouth. That just shows you what my family will go through to have a good time together…

Even bikers were allowed at the Meatball Dinner. Even bikers with stone-smashed noses and puffy lips…

And there was even live music! Mother Goose surely does not know the name of this country bluegrass band, but her rubbery and webbed foot was tapping. I thought somebody might ask me to dance, but then I realized they were mostly playing sad old country funeral songs…

Will The Circle Be Unbroken, In the Sweet By and By, Amazing Grace and I’ll Fly Away…

At long last, with our gullets full and the parking responsibilities passed along to another fine young Lutheran man, we could all pose together for a family portrait. Here’s a handsome picture of a pretty large flock of gooses (my husband goose and some of my goslings are missing, of course, as they had to hike in Wisconsin, work at vegan restaurants and/or serve our country in the U.S. Navy):

Even the little hero dog was there for the Trinity Lutheran Church Meatball Dinner!

After the dinner and the family photo session, we all went back to Dad’s house for some visiting time and a garden tour. It was a very special and happy time. But as we drove back to Keewatin that evening, we had some very surprising photo ops! You’ll laugh like a crazy loon tomorrow when this northern Minnesota adventure story continues…

Love, Mother Goose

Girl Riding A Cow

Well for gooseness sakes, how did I forget to include this picture in my last story?

AnnaRose, aka Mona Lisa, resting with a nice dairy cow.

[And now, I must seriously get to my next post. See you there…]

Mother Goose Surprises Her Sister

The sister of Mother Goose lives “up north” in the land of 10,000 lakes, northern Minnesota. It’s an eleven hour drive from the home of Mother Goose — unless, of course, she is speeding and getting pulled over by the Wisconsin State Patrol in which case the ride can take up to fourteen hours…

Mother Goose does not to see very much of her sister — just a couple of visits each year because of the extreme distance.

My lovely sister, Leslie, aka Bunn

Not surprisingly, we don’t like “good-byes”. It’s a trait we inherited from our mother — quite normal and natural in our goose family. However, my sister has taken that dislike to the extreme by simply avoiding the “good-bye” time altogether! She and her husband, Allen, have begun a strange new tradition of disappearing in the middle of the night to avoid the painful, tearful farewells and so longs. This in itself has become a source of great sadness and frustration for Mother Goose who, despite the hard emotional content of a good-bye, does treasure every moment spent with her beloved, long-distance family.

Hence the surprise…

Last Friday morning, Mother Goose and her three youngest goslings loaded up the Goosemobile and set the cruise control and the auto-pilot for “up north”. Eleven hours later, we arrived unexpected, uninvited and unannounced at Bunn’s doorstep. A great big round of applause for AnnaRose who filmed this surprise for us all! Grab your tissues and enjoy this video!

But this was only the beginning of a GREAT surprise weekend! You won’t want to miss tomorrow’s “up north” adventure…

Love your family and friends today! M.Goose

The Most Fun With Bunn

Since my precious sister flew away yesterday morning, I’ve been addressing those work things that have been sitting in the corner sulking for several days whilst we were out having fun. Nonetheless, let me show you some of the fun we had with dear Bunn.

She was nearly grabbed up by a mural at the bakery!

Bunn relished her first Chicago hot dog from Gene and Jude’s.

I wonder why she’s waving her middle finger at Mother Goose?

Jessi, Bunn and Mother Goose with the blue sky and Lake Michigan behind us.

Mother Goose will always love you, sissy!

Sometimes we have to reach our own maturity before we can see how special someone else has been all along. As time goes by, this big sister sees her little sister as more and more special. She’s funny and creative and oh so caring. She’s brave and tenacious and ever sensitive. You’ve always been the best part of me, sissy, but it’s taken me years to recognize that. Precious sister always…

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