The White Pages

Things I Learned About Myself While Living In Very Northern Minnesota January 13, 2013

Filed under: From My Heart — perfectlywhite @ 1:10 am

The following is a stream of consciousness attempt to begin unpacking the things I learned during the three years we spent in northern Minnesota on the shore of Lake Superior. There’s so much more.


Photo courtesy of Susan Stanley

I like living simply. Too much scheduling, expectation, and technology makes me anxious.

I’m way more practical than I ever thought myself to be. I like streamlined and purposeful.

Being practical and paying attention to details is not the same thing. I am not a details gal, I’m a big picture gal. I can plan a great party with awesome food and cute decor but forget the silverware and cups.

People give me energy and inspiration. And then I need a nap. In other words, I’m an introverted extrovert.

I love the sound of water. There’s peace in the sound of water. There’s also mystery and power and strength. I can’t hear it without being reminded of my Creator.


Photo courtesy of Susan Stanley

My fear of disappointing others has kept me from communicating disappointing or hard things. Failure to communicate damages relationships and ruins trust. I’m getting better at communicating.

One can live without things like Band-Aids, Kleenex (sorry, we don’t buy that, just use toilet paper), plastic baggies, paper towels, and conditioner when on a budget (funded by other people) and unwilling to pay the exorbitant middle-of-nowhere price for such things. Being cheap helps the environment, too.

I have a tendency to idealize and desire to love something (i.e. the woods), but that doesn’t mean I can will myself to like it. That being said, I learned that even though something makes me uncomfortable, the enjoyment and appreciation I get out of it when I choose to do it anyway replaces the like I thought I wanted and didn’t have. You can dislike something but learn to enjoy it. This is a good lesson to learn when you are married or have friends. Learn to enjoy what your spouse likes, even if you don’t like it (Caleb has learned to dance, cook, sew, paint my toe nails, and enjoy chick flicks based on this principle. He read that and asked me what I’ve learned to enjoy. Football, basketball, board games. I’m still working on that last one. He’s a pretty simple guy.).

I like to think I will be way more comfortable with adventure than I actually am.

I don’t like wild things. I like control. This taught me something about my theology.

Being a mom is beautiful. It’s also hard. That’s what makes it beautiful and rewarding.


The boy that made me a mama.

God doesn’t make sense a lot of the time. That’s a good thing. That’s what makes Him God.


4 Responses to “Things I Learned About Myself While Living In Very Northern Minnesota”

  1. dave / gayle Says:

    I miss you both. This was fun to read and so very, Kari (which rhymes when you say it the new old way). Go give Khaleeb a hug and think of us. Love, Dave

  2. Juli knausd Says:

    This was beautiful to read, Kari. Simply beautiful.

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