Last week, I wrote about how it is almost the middle of August, and now the middle of August is gone. Last week, I wrote about how I haven’t tackled cleaning my garage. That task is still not complete. However, it’s still August, and I have hoped that I can get everything accomplished before the snow falls.

Winter Is Coming

Regardless of whether or not you watch the HBO show “Game of Thrones,” winter is coming. There is a lot of talk about spring cleaning, but in Northern Minnesota, we understand that it can be more important to prepare for winter. Whether you spend the colder months here in the Northland, or trek to warmer climates, there is work that needs to be done in order to prepare.

The camper doesn’t pack itself. Water lines may need to be purged or drained and shut off. Depending on how your house is heated, the woodpile doesn’t just appear, and it needs to be seasoned, or dried for a year in order to burn properly. Snow tires don’t magically mount, and don’t get me started on weather-stripping windows, although that sticky brown rope stuff is better than you think!

There needs to be a plan.

The Plan

Planning for winter isn’t that difficult. You’ve done this before. For me, it’s easier to make a list. For others, it’s kept in their head. Whatever the case, formal or not, it is usually easier if there is a systematic way to accomplish the task. (Here is where I actually wrap around to talk about yard sales.) Cleaning the attic or garage, or packing to leave for the winter all have one main aspect in common. What stays and what goes? Sometimes, there are some nuances to those decisions. You may have a keep pile, a sell pile and a throw pile. (For many of us, that sell pile gets a second look during the yard sale, when we price that old picture frame our sister made at camp for $125.)

Your Legacy Your Decisions

Your Legacy is the same. It works best to have a plan. Three or four piles or buckets work well for sorting here, too. What is important to you? Family is usually the first bucket. Do you have other interests or areas that are important to you? What brings you joy? The Community Foundation is here to help you. We listen. We ask questions. You decide. Stop in or give us a call at 218-999-9100.

The Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation has been connecting donors’ charitable intentions to community needs for over 25 years to make our Greater Itasca Area – and the world – a better place to live. We invite you to become part of the good work we do, and to include us in the conversation with your financial or estate planner to answer the question “What good do you want your money to do?” For more information, visit our website at or schedule a visit by calling 218-999-9100.


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