Feature Stories


'Rehab Addict' host Nicole Curtis transforms local house

This spring, viewers of “Rehab Addict” have been watching host Nicole Curtis restore this 1,264-square-foot house, which was built in 1889 on the East Side of St. Paul.

The front of the restored 381 Case Ave. house, with the woodwork on the front porch intact, is shown on a sunny day. (photo courtesy of DIY Network.)

In the 381 Case Avenue home, the ‘Rehab Addict’ team tackled ceiling and wall damage, a worn floor and an original fireplace mantel and pocket door in need of restoration. (photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

The kitchen needed extensive work on the ceiling and floors, as well as a better-organized workspace. Nicole Curtis moved the built-in cabinet from a facing wall to a spot over the sink and added more counter space for modern cooks. (photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

Relocating a virtual traffic jam of doors and exposing more of the chimney brickwork set the stage for a spacious, serene bedroom. (photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

An unused nook in the dining room, just left, becomes a perfect place to display a period buffet, and repaired windows let the light shine in.(photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

One East Side home full of memories gets brought back to life, soul intact


Q & A with Nicole Curtis of 'Rehab Addict'

Nicole Curtis (photo courtesy of DIY Network)

In the Case Ave house, a little-used porch, at top, becomes a great place for a breezy breakfast or supper. The “car siding” that adds such a warm tone to the space is now reflected by the restored plank flooring. (photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

In the bathroom of the Case Ave house, Curtis used a couple new fixtures with old-time style, but kept the lovely claw-foot tub. To make the tub useful as a shower, it was easy to add a shower spray and curtain, but the team also had to make the wall alongside the tub waterproof. The glazed subway tile Curtis chose looks like it’s been there since the 1880s. (photos courtesy of Ariel Photography)

TV host talks about her latest project and popular show


Tapping our love of maple syrup

The tree-tap device is put into the tree when the day temperatures are starting to climb above 32 degrees and the nights are still below freezing. That’s when the boxelder tree sap starts to flow. (Linda E. Andersen/Review)

South Minneapolis resident Teresa Marrone is the author of the new book “Modern Maple”, which is full of interesting recipes and information about making maple syrup. (submitted photo)

Author Teresa Marrone used a hand-powered drill bit to start the hole to insert a “spile” in a boxelder tree at Harriet Alexander Nature Center in Roseville. Sap will flow from the spile into a bag. (Linda E. Andersen/Review)

(Linda E. Andersen/Review)

Last week, the only thing I knew about pure maple syrup was that I liked it on pancakes, and that it somehow came from the sap of maple trees.
It’s hard to imagine how a liquid can come from a solid tree. Now, after reading the new book “Modern Maple” by Teresa Marrone of Minneapolis and attending a talk she gave at the Minnesota History Center, my knowledge of maple syrup has expanded a great deal.


Get fired up for dinner without the crowded oven

Spiced Grilled Ham with Citrus Glaze

Roasted Potatoes with Bacon and Goat Cheese

Ham and Peas with Mint and Tarragon

Looking to put a delicious twist on your Easter meal? Try cooking ham on the grill.  It’s easy to fire up your feast with this Spiced Grilled Ham with Citrus Glaze recipe. Don’t have a grill?


Everything’s rosy with this layer cake

With this recipe from the experts at Wilton, even novice bakers can proudly say, “I made it from scratch,” as they present this gorgeous cake to guaranteed oohs and aahs.


Try some new fare on your Easter feasters

Perhaps it’s the promise of spring around the corner that has cooks looking for new ways to spice up Easter meals.


‘Sisterhood of War:’ Nurses who served in Vietnam will tell their story

Kim Heikkila’s book “Sisterhood of War: Minnesota Women in Vietnam” focuses on nurses who served during the war. (Vonny Rohloff/Review)

Former Army nurse Valerie Buchan of Arden Hills tended wounded soldiers in Vietnam during the war. (submitted photo)

Kim Heikkila is the author of “Sisterhood of War” a tale of women nurses who served in Vietnam. (submitted photo)

March is Women's History Month, and the Ramsey County Branch Library in Roseville is celebrating it with programs about some of the more interesting aspects of being an American female.
The one that caught my editor's attention was historian Kim Heikkila's talk on her book "Sisterhood of War: Minnesota Women in Vietnam." She knew immediately that I would have a particular interest in the topic since I worked for Special Services in Vietnam during the war. It provided recreation programs for U.S. servicemen.


Pamplona, Spain and Hemingway

This life-size bronze statue of the famous running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, shows the tension between the bulls and the men who jump in front to try to outrun them during the festival of Sanfermines each July. While many people are injured, only 15 have been killed in the last 100 years. (photos by Pamela O’Meara/Review)

The zampanzares jiggle their hips to jangle the giant brass bells on their backs during the festival of San Fermin Txikito in Pamplona.

Ernest Hemingway is featured in an old Paris magazine on display at the Museo del Encierro.

Balconies at the Gran Hotel La Perla in Pamplona, Spain, overlook the narrow street where the bulls run each July.

An ancient breed of black-headed sheep graze near old Roman burial circles in the Pyrenees northeast of Pamplona.

My balcony at the Gran Hotel La Perla in Pamplona, Spain, overlooked a narrow street lined with 18th century yellow, blue, tan and pink buildings along the route of the running of the bulls during the July festival of Sanfermines.


Peril in the ponds

Judy Helgen at a favorite Falcon Heights habitat in warmer times. (submitted photo)

A fascinating new book by Roseville writer Judy Helgen uncovers the tragedy happening in our ponds


The romantic's guide to Valentine's Day

You can't go wrong with a box of handmade chocolates from Sweet Chocolat in Roseville. A romantic Valentine's Day dinner at Scalzo's Italian Grille is a great way to celebrate your love.

It's doubtful that Esther Howland, the Massachusetts woman the U.S. Census Bureau credits with selling the first mass-produced valentine cards in the 1840s, knew the Valentine's Day craze she was starting with her lace and paper-flower adorned notes.