By Molly Butler

Here’s a little Goldilocks remix for you: I used to have three purses.

One I didn’t like very much, but I reasoned, “I don’t care if this purse gets worn out and scratched,” so I used my least favorite purse every day. There was my second purse, which I had liked very much, used up and needed to be repaired or tossed. I kept it in limbo: never used, never fixed, never let go. And hanging in my closet was my very favorite purse, which was pristine, brand new. I never used it. Not once. One day I mentioned to my husband, “This is my favorite purse!” “Really?” he asked. “I never see you use it.” What exactly was I waiting for? When would it ever be just right?

I’m in the post-holiday cleanse phase of the year. Going through Christmas gifts to get rid of the old, incorporate the new. Rearranging the furniture, dusting off the dishes and boxes and knick-knacks forgotten in the hard-to-reach places, slowly refreshing the house. In the process, I found an entire box of candles I’d bought, been excited about, then totally forgot. I found just-in-case items I’d never once used. I found kitchen gadgets I’d been so excited to use but never did because I was waiting, waiting, waiting for the right moment.

If we’re not careful, our possessions possess us.

After my parent’s house fire, we found bottles of liquor we’d brought home from Germany, bordering on irreplaceable, which had never been opened. The heat of the fire caused the corks to burst, and the liquor was ruined.

We save the nice plates. Stick the expensive liquor in storage. Hold off on our best makeup or shoes or tea. We try to delay our own joy and pleasure, try to save it for later like it’s money in the bank. But, the day rarely comes when we get to have it all, and in the meantime, we live our lives unnecessarily deprived. If we’re not careful, our possessions possess us.

Don’t get in your own way. Future you is no more worthy of the little luxuries and comforts. You might as well live to the fullest, even in these small ways. It’s a small but powerful change in mindset to use the favorites every day.

Have a wonderful weekend. Don’t hold out on yourself.


Wild Sparrow on Riverfront Drive in Mankato invites you to help with their Shop Cleaning! Stop by from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for extra deals and clearance prices as they get ready for the new year! This sale is your last chance to stop by the shop until February, so don’t miss out! The North Mankato Blood Drive is on from noon to 6 p.m. at the Police Annex. Visit the Red Cross website, and enter NMTLMN to schedule your appointment to donate.

Start the new year with a new hobby! The Mankato Makerspace is once again offering glass-working classes with hands-on experience and instruction in the basics. Participants will get all the safety supplies and equipment they need and will be going home with their very own colored necklace pendant! This class is designed for beginners; register here to join in! The 410 Project opens for the new year with 7.9 and 1: Duo Exhibition by Ben Liebl and Taryn Sakry. Gallery hours are Friday and Saturday, 2-6 p.m.

Music lovers can look forward to this weekend! “Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story” will be at the Kato Ballroom this Friday at 5:30 p.m. This show includes over 20 of Buddy Holly’s greatest hits and has been seen by over 22 million people around the world. Catch Foe and Ginny & the Fizz are teaming up for a night of music at the What’s Up Lounge in Mankato. Cover is $10, the show is 21+ and starts at 8:30 p.m.


We have plenty of fun for the little ones this weekend! Kids ages 6-8 are invited to the North Mankato Taylor Library for their NEW Breakfast Buddies program! There will be donuts for the kids and a sock donut craft. No registration is required! The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota invites learners of all ages to attend their special Raptor Center presentation beginning at 10:30 p.m. Experts from the Raptor Center from the University of Minnesota will guide you through raptor identification, habitats, adaptations and the importance of protecting wildlife. This presentation will feature 3-4 live raptors handled by the experts!

Minneopa Falls will host a Beginner Snowshoe Hike beginning at 10 a.m. at the Group Campground. Scott Kudelka, a Minneopa Area Naturalist, will lead the group on an hour and a half hike of the trails while sharing some information about the history and nature of the area. If we don’t have enough snow on the ground for snowshoeing, plan on making this a hike!

It’s a great weekend to take a class! The Mankato Makerspace presents Mindful Mandalas! Students will learn about color theory, symmetry and dot painting techniques while creating a beautiful dot mandala to take home at the end of the day. Class begins at noon. All materials are provided, register here to participate. Then, head to the Indian Island Winery at 1 p.m. for a Cooking Class at the winery! Learn to make steak fajitas, garlic/butter chicken and white chicken chili! Everyone who registers will also receive a free bake-at-home pizza!

The Mankato Craft Beer Expo is from 2-6 p.m. at the Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center. Sample beers from coast to coast, with brews from 40 different craft breweries! Learn about Food Pairing, Homebrewing and the History of Brewing in Minnesota. Get your tickets here.


The Mankato Farmers’ Market will be open in Drummer’s Garden Center from 10 a.m. to noon. Stop by for some little luxuries to make life sweeter. Then, head to the St. Peter American Legion Post 37 for Dad’s Belgian Waffle Feed! From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., enjoy breakfast while supporting the Baseball Association! Price is $8 for adults, $5 for ages 6-12 and kiddos under 5 eat free.

Kids are in for an exciting day! St. Paul’s Lutheran School in New Ulm will host a Winter Carnival! Enjoy a hot cocoa bar, bounce houses, prizes and games, open from 1-3 p.m. Plus, there’s a good chance you’ll run into Elsa, Anna, Olaf and Kristoff from Frozen! Enter to win local gift cards at Oaken’s Trading Post. The Mankato Playhouse is open for auditions for “Children of Eden Jr.” Stop by from 5-6:30 p.m. to audition. Check out their website for details.

Added Value: Box it up

Struggling to decide if you’re ready to part with some of your items? Got something that’s not your favorite, but you can’t seem to get rid of it? Have a packing party! Originally coined by Ryan Nicodemus, one of The Minimalists, this is a method to help you let go of your objects in limbo. Put the objects you are indecisive about in a box and put the box out of sight. Once you need something from the box, you just open it up and get it. But chances are, if it’s out of sight, you’ll forget what you were even holding onto. Decide how long you want this packing party to last before you donate/sell/toss whatever is left in the boxes. Tip: if items are seasonal, do this during the season you would most use them.


Weekend High Notes is a regular feature by Molly Butler. Molly covers weekend events, live music, and culture in the Greater Mankato Area. Suggestions are welcome using the MankatoLIFE contact form.