Vogt’s Notes: Always find something to look forward to

Anticipating a fun time can be almost as nice as the actual event

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Don't you love having something to look forward to?

Sometimes, looking forward to something is almost more fun than the actual something once it finally happens.

But usually, the something lives up to every expectation.

It's usually cyclical — an upcoming vacation, a weekend of fun, a special event, a holiday.

For quite a few years now we've anticipated seasons.


Crisp, fall days full of four-wheeling.

Cold winter days to go ice fishing.

Hot and humid summer days to take the pontoon boat to the sandbar to throw a football and people watch.

Right now I'm looking forward to a girls trip to the Colorado mountains. More than 20 of us — aunts, cousins, nieces — will gather at my sister's home to celebrate my mom's 80th birthday.

What better way to celebrate than with a destination trip in a cozy winter location surrounded by many of those you love most but only see a couple of times a year at most?

It's sure to be a fun and relaxing time.

Part of what makes this gathering possible is communication; staying in touch.

That all started three years ago, after my dad died in January 2020 and continuing during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.


A cousin started a group text message with all the female relatives on my mom's side of the family. It turned into a lifeline for my mom, finding herself isolated right after my dad died, and it lives on today.

We share random thoughts and photos and memes and ideas for what TV shows to watch.

And we planned a trip for 20-plus women and two babies through the text group.

In November and December, my husband and I looked forward to the ice forming so we could take out our “cabin on wheels” — our fish house — to different lakes. Since New Year’s weekend we’ve found ourselves on Red Lake, Lake Winnibigoshish, Leech Lake and North Long Lake.

It really doesn’t matter how many fish we catch. It’s just relaxing to be away from home and the daily duties of home and work life.

It’s fun to have a “neighborhood” of fish house friends, enjoying morning coffee, happy hour, snacks, meals and conversation at different houses.

It’s just as fun to be on our own, jigging our lines while watching football games on TV. (Cincinnati leads Buffalo 17-7 in playoff action as I sit in the fish house on an area lake writing this column.)

Soon, we’ll look forward to the longer days of spring and the warmth of summer, when we can again hit the lake in a boat for fishing and other fun.


We participate in informal fishing tournaments with my husband’s co-workers, and though I detest getting up and having to be somewhere early, we love these tournament days, even in iffy weather.

We find ourselves on lakes we’ve never ventured to, and there’s just nothing like being on the lake in the early morning hours when all is quiet and peaceful.

Fall brings an annual four-wheeling trip with relatives and friends — another adventure we eagerly look forward to, counting down the days until we can jump in the truck and head out.

Here’s hoping you have something — no matter how big or little — to look forward to throughout the year.

(Cincinnati wins and we have crappies to bring home!)

Nancy Vogt, editor, may be reached at 218-855-5877 or Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at

Nancy Vogt - Vogt's Notes.jpg
Nancy Vogt, PineandLakes Echo Journal Editor

Opinion by Nancy Vogt
Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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