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Day 39 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

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This guy feeds the squirrels peanuts, patiently, generously, sweetly. “Want a peanut? Come here, come here, want a peanut?” you can hear him calling as you walk past. I see him at least every week. Sometimes he plays a ukelele and sings, maybe to the squirrels, maybe for the preoccupied humans walking by with their little screens.

Sorry you can’t really see any squirrels in this photo. I took it hurriedly and candidly, more interested in the man than the squirrels. But the squirrels do gather, wherever he and his peanuts are!

P.S. I am leaving Loveland temporarily tomorrow, heading to Minnesota for an extended weekend to see if we can find a house. My blog posts will be on hold until next week when we return.

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Muse

Day 38 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

Got to take my mom out for coffee this morning, extending Mother’s Day another day. We had to make up for lost time – this is the first time we’ve been together for Mother’s Day since I moved here in 2013.

Dallabetta’s Muse is a coffee shop located on the premises of a sculptor’s studio. The sculptor is Jane DeDecker, and her husband Kyle Dallabetta runs the coffee shop. Coffee and goodies are great, and so is the atmosphere. Sculptures and art are everywhere, including functional exit signs, railings, fixtures and parking signs.

Should’ve gotten photos of the inside, but you’ll just have to check it out yourself if you haven’t yet and are in the area! Note the hours are quite limited (open till about 3 on weekdays – don’t trust the Yelp page linked to above for hours!).

 

Day 38 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

This is my favorite thing about Loveland today.

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My parents are here! Just got in this evening for a three-day visit. Our house is one happy place tonight 🙂

Front Porch Perch

Day 37 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

I have always loved front porches. Our big old Victorian house in Owatonna had one, and I spent many afternoons out there reading or writing – a good bit of my work on Frankenchurch was done there. And plenty of not-working too.

Here in Loveland, our smaller house has a smaller front porch, but it still has one, and I’ve taken full advantage of it, often with my faithful doggy companion Cody.

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I’m hoping my front porch luck will hold as we look for a house in Minnesota!

Day 36 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

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This place is amazing. Used/salvaged building supplies galore! We’ve bought and sold and donated more than a few things here since we bought our house three years ago. Fancier stuff is kept in the building at the front, and out back are sheds and sheds of materials – each one filled with similar items (all the storm doors are together, all the gutters, all the countertops, etc. etc.).

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And between the sheds, even more stuff that can handle sitting outside without a roof over it.

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Today we were looking for metal roofing for our garage, but didn’t find enough to do the whole roof.

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We did donate a couple extra cabinet doors we had been storing in our basement though. And got to say hi to the huge loveable dog who often greets us there. And spied an outhouse for $300 on our way out. But passed it up.

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We also spotted this vehicle, which is often parked downtown on school mornings, with the big dog sitting in the back. Silas and I always enjoy seeing it on our walks to school.

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Stone Age Fair

Day 35 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

 

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One Saturday morning a year ago or maybe two, we happened to be walking downtown as a family when we saw a sign reading “Stone Age Fair” with an arrow pointing towards the Pulliam Community Building. We were curious so we followed the arrows which led us to the basement of this interesting old building, a 1930s-era WPA project that has been neglected in recent years but still hosts events occasionally.

What we found was a basement full of tables filled with artifacts and arrowheads and archaeologists, amateur and accomplished alike. Enthusiasts had come from all over the country to share their finds and meet and greet one another and the public. And my kids dove into a huge box of artifacts they could take for free, which they added to their rock collection pictured above. Silas remembers that he filled his pockets so full his pants were falling down on the walk home!

The Stone Age Fair is free and open to the public and has been happening since 1934. In its second year, it was attended by 10,000 people! There weren’t nearly that many in the basement of the Pulliam Building, but it was a fun time nevertheless.

Monkey Business

Day 34 in my “Leaving Loveland” challenge.

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Here’s another sculpture just around the corner from our house. This one stands facing the studio of its sculptor, Mark Lundeen. The kids like to stop and look in the cup for loose coins (there are sculpted ones in it already), or sometimes they’ll put coins in it. It’s a pretty elaborate “take a penny leave a penny” container!