JP Rennquist Posts

Chickens in the City?

I doubt I will actually do this, but wanted some input, encouragement and/or discouragement based on experience

Backyard Chickens

Backyard Chickens

Attack of the Flying Gorilla

Move over Bob Dylan, through the miracle of twitter, etc now Duluth has a new claim to fame.


Perfect Duluth Dye

My girlies dyeing eggs this year OUTDOORS!

My girlies dyeing eggs this year OUTDOORS!

We’ve been having an annual Easter Eve Egg Dyeing Party every year since I decided to participate more in my family rather than just attempt to finance it by working every Saturday.

Dining Al Fresco …

That ever expanding city within a city, or as I like to call it, SMDC-opolis played host to a shockingly pleasant dining experience today …

After the first dr visit of her 10th month of pregnancy my partner and I were both famished and agreed to visit that behemoth’s  hearthstone grill (I refuse to put the extra “e” on grill cause that just grates on me, they are trying way too hard to be something they are not).

Anyway, the food was really good. Nice variety, well prepared, and yeah, it’s cafeteria style, but the service was still really good and quick, and it’s nice to pick out your own serving sizes sometimes, especially when you’re rushed or have a big appetite.

And as my impromptu photo will attest, the view and ambiance were very very pleasant. Although, if you are a neat freak keep your food on the tray as the outdoor tables had a thin, barely noticeable layer of grime on them.

The cost for this very gastronomically and aesthetically pleasing lunch for two cost (that’s one giant and one very pregnant lady so we are talking appetites here folks.) Well, it came in well under $20.

So I’m wondering to myself, am I crazy, or did I just stumble upon a fantastic new lunch place? And even more shocking to me … did I just find the new best place to dine outdoors in the Twin Ports?

1st outdoor lunch of 2009 at the new(ish) SMDC clinic building

Our 1st outdoor lunch of 2009 at the new(ish) SMDC clinic building

Your thoughtful thoughts?

Easter. Hidden Eggs. Pancake Breakfast

Easter at Hillside Church Duluth

Hot Toddy Hits Basic Cable

Hot Toddy and Laura Jo Dewitt

Hot Toddy and Laura Jo Dewitt

Got this interesting message from my friend who moved to LA to make it big about a year ago. He’s a Duluth native singer/songwriter/babe magnet, Hot Toddy Eckart, and I thought some of you PDDers might be interested in the update on his career:

Paper or Plastic?

Diaper Man!

Diaper Man!

Alyssa reminded me today that we can ask each other questions on PDD and get some great localized answers.  So, I have three questions to ask the collective PDD wisdom/snark base.   Yes three, but I’ll stick to two for now.

Question #1 I am blessed with a new baby that is coming sometime in the next several weeks.  For my first two girlies I used plastic diapers without any prejudice.  However, with this one, my partner has been advocating for the use of re-usable cloth diapers.  And I am going along on this, and not just because I have to, but because I want to.   In fact, I am washing my first batch of cloth diapers now (just out of the package).  I am interested in stories, experiences and advice on the reusable diaper front from a local perspective, I’m especially interested in stuff like logistics, tips and tricks, price savings, and if anyone has any theories of actual savings and environmental benefits, etc.  For the record, the plan is to breast feed this child, I know that makes a difference.  And, because she is on parental leave indefinitely I suspect she will be doing quite a bit more of the changing, but I will probably do most or all of the laundry, so the decision affects us both. I would also entertain general earth friendly baby advice, offers of free stuff you think we could use, and good infant activity ideas around the area as this will be my first new one in 6 years.

Question #2 Is almost completely unrelated, however, I hope it will produce some fascinating advice mash-ups.  Here goes, during my long period of unemployment and underemployment I archived nearly all of the wild goose music library onto a hard drive for eternal use.  Then, being broke I sold as many of those cds as I could to pay for stuff like food, bills and (until I quit) cigarrettes).  I also gave many that could not sell away because I just didn’t think I “needed” anymore.  So … things have been going just fine until … the last few weeks.  I got a new laptop and thousands of the dang things won’t play.  the reason is that over the course of the last few years I have used a number of junker computers and all of them are gone now.  The digital files are wma’s with DRM and the windows site says that I have downloaded the license too many times.  This is very troubling as it looks like those are just “ghost files” that I will never be able to play ever again, and being a (retired) DJ I still kind of need them sometimes, not to mention WANT to listen to them.  I have looked into a number of different ways of removing the drm on various bulletins, etc online and it all seems very confusing and many of them also seem very pirate-like.  I am not interested in slinking around in the shadows (much)  since these are all things that I prchased legally and feel like I “own” and I feel I should be allowed to use them on any coputer I own, or any computer anywhere for that matter.  So … looking for advice and experience with this matter as well.  Oh and if posible I would like to do this for free.  But would pay something if I knew what was the best way to proceed.

Fathers Forever (reprise)

MN Fathers Forever Saturday March 21st at Fond du Lac Tribaland Community College

MN Fathers Forever Saturday March 21st at Fond du Lac Tribaland Community College

Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College, 2101 14th Street, Cloquet, MN 55720
MINNESOTA FATHERS FOREVER: March 21, 2009 (Saturday), 9:30am-3:00pm, Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College, 2101 14th Street, Cloquet, MN 55720. This event is about honoring fathers and connecting them with the resources that they need to best serve their children. We welcome fathers who are looking for positive solutions to problems with child support, child custody, and parenting time issues. Fathers who attend for will get assistance in modifying their child support orders, drivers license reinstatement, and legal information/assistance.
KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Oscar Reed (former Vikings running back with 3 Superbowl appearances). Special appearance by members of the 2008 National Championship UMD Football Bulldogs.

Smoke Signals

The thought provoking film  “Smoke Signals”  will also be shown.

Free family photos of dads and kids resource vendor booths, child care, lunch, and limited transportation are all available.  This event was created by a large coalition of organizations that really care about strengthening families in our region, including the Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA), Boyz II Dadz Young Fathers Program, Carlton County Child Support, Fond du Lac Head Start, Fond du Lac Social Services, St. Louis County Child Support, and University of Minnesota Extension and many, many others.

TRANSPORTATION UPDATE: Free rides to and from Duluth are available. A van will leave the Central Hillside Community Center at 8:45 am on Saturday Morning. A return trip to Duluth will be made at 3:15 pm from Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College. Call me for transportation details (jp Boyz II Dadz: 218.391.8330)

What are you doing for dinner?

Love Wins Sticker from Hillside Community Church

Love Feast Wednesday at Hillside Community Church 6-8 pm

Good food, good music, good company.  No expectations, no pressure, no judgment, only love.  I wouldn’t be telling you about it if I wasn’t planning on going myself.  We meet in the Historic Shrine Auditorium across from the friendly Cozy Bar and the CJM memorial.  Kids and big appetites welcome.  Oh … and if you play your cards right you might even be able to get one of these snazzy bumper stickers.  See you there.

Love, JP

Weather Channel in Duluth

Weather Channel in Duluth Today

Weather Channel in Duluth Today

MN Fathers Forever 3.21.09

MN Fathers Forever
Connecting fathers and children.
Saturday, March 21st
at 9:30 am – 3:00 pm
Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College
2101 – 14th Street, Cloquet, MN

Oscar Reed Former Vikings "Purple People Eater"
Keynote speaker former Vikings great Oscar Reed plus a meet and greet with 2008 NCAA Div 2 champs UMD Bulldogs.
Possible Drivers License reinstatement and/or waiver of a portion of past due child support
Movie “Smoke Signals” –
Child support modification assistance
Legal information and assistance
Lunch available
Informational booths

Limited transportation provided by AEOA to those living in
the Duluth area – Call Boyz II Dadz to coordinate (218) 391-8330

Free child care available during event – Call: 1-800-662-5711 ext. 262

Hope to see you there,

Love JP