E-mail: Sroufelarjan@aol/com

May 1, 2002


Just how do I recall those high school days? Fun and eventful!!!!!!!

As you may all recall, I first appeared in Rolfe, Iowa with the new owners of the Cozy Corner Café , my mother, Lona Ranger Bailey and her husband, Merritt Bailey, my 2 brothers and 2 sisters, Jerry, Ted, Twila and Jane Ranger. This was  in 1948 the middle of my freshman year of high school. Since it was the year Latin was offered instead of Gen. Science, I had to switch to Latin it seems, I appeared just a week or so before first semester exams and had to take that test right along with the rest of you.. Oh, that was fun!! But I did survive the rest of the year in the Latin class. Anyway, I do remember some more enjoyable times during high school but mostly the extra-curricular activities such as cheerleading, bus trips to and from ballgames, plays ( I was a secretary in one I think), choir concerts & marching band. How else was I able to be with the group of ball players for all the fun? We did have some good times during those times, right?

What has gone on in my life since high school graduation these 50 years? I worked in the Cozy Corner Cafe and the Hotel Cafe but following graduation began working for Dr. R. B. Ranney in his dental office----do you know that building, Dee? In September of that year, 1952, I married Larry A. Sroufe and so it will be our 50th anniversary this year.

He was working in Nashua, IA so we set up housekeeping there where his job was at a local lumberyard. He became manager and I began working across the street at a dental office. Just a little over 5 years later, we became parents of our first son and I became a stay-at-home Mom. We were active in community activities, card clubs and boating as we lived on the bank of the James River. Then in 1960, we were transferred to St. Cloud, MN (mgr. of J. F. Anderson  Lumber Co.). We lived there just long enough to build a house and have a baby. Our second son was born just 5 days after Christmas in 1960. In the spring of 1962 we were again transferred, this time to Spencer, IA. It was still the same lumber company but there were several mergers and for awhile, Larry was the supervisor for the area of NW Iowa and SW Minnesota but went back to being a manager in Spencer. Then of course, more transfers, we were sent to Huron, SD and stayed there for 10 years and then on to Aberdeen, SD for the next 17 years. Our boys completed their schooling and are both in business for themselves in SD.

Besides becoming a dental assistant for two different dentists, I then became a mother and also became interested in ceramics. A friend, my ceramics teacher, then asked me to join her in her ceramics shop so became a certified Duncan products instructor and worked in the shop for several years. I enjoyed that very much but moved on to work in the college library. This led me to classes in Library Science and later on to pursue an associate degree in the medical secretary field. So at the age of 46 I began classes with all those youngsters and graduated in the spring of 1982. That summer I began work at the Mental Health Center in Aberdeen, furthered my education with a correspondence course & became a Medical Records Technician. I spent 10 years as Medical Records Coordinator as well as Librarian for the Mental Health Center.

Larry decided to retire from the lumber business after 40 years so I retired at that time also and we planned to do some traveling. January of 1993 we started out for Florida with the destination being Arizona for a visit. Then decided Arizona was a good place to relocate so we had a house built in a gated adult community called Sunbird, in Chandler which is a suburb of Phoenix. We have been in our house for 8 years now and find it just right.

We don't have to rake leaves or shovel snow anymore but we do occasionally have to rake or "fluff up" our rocks as rocks and cactus are what's in our yard---no grass to cut, water or fertilize--- in our small yard. We do have our own grapefruit tree though & that needs some attention besides picking the fruit. We even have one of those saguaro cactus (planted it when it was 3' tall and now is taller than the house, but the saguaro still does not have any arms. Do enjoy all the cactus and they have some beautiful blossoms on them in the spring time when we get just a few inches of rain during the months of Dec. and January. Believe it or not, Arizona is not all cactus and sand we can pick peaches, grapes, all kinds of berries plus other things every spring and we even have crops of sweet corn twice a year not as good as Iowa corn but still sweet corn.

In our travels every summer for about 3 months, we have been in all states but Alaska and Hawaii with our RV's, participated by officiating in model R/C airplanes races as well as participated in other model events which Larry flew his own model planes, attended Nascar Winston Cup car races, did family research and did a lot of sightseeing across this great U.S.

Now our travels have somewhat decreased for a variety of reasons but Larry still builds and flies model R/C airplanes and I enjoy doing genealogy (especially since computers), playing pool at our clubhouse 3 times a week with a group of ladies plus a lot of reading.

Sewing of all kinds is always a part of my life & have accumulated a number of quilts for family members as well as ourselves plus the usual "you name it" in the machine sewing and handwork field.

Our health is so far fairly good so have to count our blessings.

I wish we could have connected for this reunion but our short stay in Rolfe for 2002 will be only a couple of days in May as we then plan to attend a grandson's H.S. graduation in Brookings, SD over Memorial weekend. Then on to our apartment in Rexburg, Idaho where we will spend time---sightseeing, flying planes, & doing genealogy before heading back to Arizona at the end of August to get ready for a gift to ourselves an anniversary trip to Hawaii to celebrate 50 years of married life.

Best to all of you and even though my hair is white and I've put on some pounds, and don't have quite all that much energy, I still do remember all that energy we had in H.S. and those unforgettable times. Those were the days of "no cares" and "free wheeling attitudes" with what were we going to do next!!

I will be anxious to get the booklet and hear about all of you! !!

Good health and the very best to all of you!!!!!

Janet "Jan" Ranger Sroufe


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