Work and Play

Good morning to you
Good morning to you
Whatever the weather
We’ll make it together
In work or in play
A beautiful day!

Our vacation is approaching! “Up North,” somewhere near Hayward, Wisconsin, the Moose Lake Bags Tournament awaits us! We are the defending champions. It’s time to practice! We bring our game boards and bags to the job, and play thrice daily – at 10 am, noon, and 3 pm. We compete against each other with zeal!  The competition is friendly and fierce! We allow the neighborhood children to have a try at the game.

work and play 1

In these two remaining weeks, the habitable attic floor is framed and covered with “plywood.”  We depart the job and head to our extended family cabin in the Wisconsin woods. Words fail to describe the natural beauty that welcomes us to our “garden of Eden.” The cabin is surrounded by national forest, close to the shore of a large lake. Daniel’s great grandfather, a Chicago chauffer, discovered this splendid fishing spot with the help of Chippewa natives.

You can’t drive directly to the cabin – you must hike, boat, or swim! Bald eagles, ospreys, loons, wolves, elk, beavers, snapping turtles, garter snakes and other interesting creatures share the land and the water with us. A lone redwing blackbird, whose image inspires the Fros Carpentry logo, welcomes us from his lofty perch on tiny Sandy Island. Sunsets are masterful works of art!

And here, at last, I get real sleep – deep, long, satisfying, deserved sleep! I am not a born sleeper.  There are far better things to do! I prefer to go to bed with the hens and awaken to the call of a rooster. I look forward to a fresh day, eager to see what might become of it. I love my work!  In our Garden of Eden there is no routine, no pressure to get things done. Everything slows down. One day gives way to the next. I often don’t know which day of the week it is. It does not matter.

The Moose Lake Festival is underway, hooray! There are 20+ teams signed up for the 2014 Bags Tournament. Sometimes there are 30 teams. It’s a double elimination tournament. Daniel and I are sportingly dressed.  We know all too well that “the locals”, many of whom we know by name, particularly relish competing against us. Most spectators in the crowd cheer the local teams. A large family-clan from our area enters 5 teams. Fortunately many of the participants drink beer as they play. Daniel and I prefer to stay focused – the beer can wait ‘til victory is secured!

We make quick work of our first opponents, but subsequent matches prove challenging. We prefer to pair Daniel against the stronger player from the other team. His job is to negate the point-maker. It falls on me to earn points. During the late stages of a game we alter out strategy, and Daniel becomes our “go to” player, garnering the winning points. However on this sunny day my game is flamin’ hot! I routinely put three of the four corn bags in the hole. Sometimes we both drop all four. In a quarterfinal match we defeat the local and favored team. In the championship match a team from our area creates an early lead. We claw back and find ourselves tied at 18-18.  I steady my tossing arm, clear my mind, and sink all 4 bags to secure the championship win! Handshakes and hugs follow! Janet pastes words on the front of our game jerseys: “We came. We tossed. We won.” We collect the $100 reward, munch on sweet corn, and down our beers.


  1. John August 29, 2014 at 9:18 PM #

    Well done! As a former bags tournament champ in college, I think a 3 pm Friday afternoon dual is in order one of these weeks.


    • Daniel Fros August 29, 2014 at 10:48 PM #

      John it’s great to hear that you are a bags player! Challenge accepted. We like to set up inside the house for perfect playing conditions – no wind and a perfectly level floor. The 9 foot ceilings come in handy because both my dad and I utilize a high arching toss. I suppose now it’s not so clear who has the home court advantage…


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