Midwest Living

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Iowa’s capital becomes the political epicenter of America every four years, thanks to the Iowa Caucuses (February 1 this year). More than 1,600 credentialed media outlets have arrived—or are slated to arrive—to cover all the action. But the buzz isn’t just surrounding politics. These articles, tweets and Instagram photos give you a taste of what it’s like... More
As sunshine illuminates one of Jennifer Shea Hedberg’s ice globes, tiny threads radiate from the center like a silver sparkler and interior bubbles shimmer like mercury. But the real enchantment—especially for the Frozen generation—comes at night when candles or battery-operated lights make the globes glow. “The round dome looks like a moon,”... More
Twenty-five feet of snow would seem like plenty for anybody. But as each spring approaches in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, Tasha Stielstra worries about it all disappearing too soon. For her and her family's 150 dogs at Nature's Kennel, a long winter means more runs through the forests around their home in McMillan. We chatted with Tasha about her love of dogs and the great outdoors... More
If there’s one televised New Year’s event that we all notice along with the Times Square ball drop, it’s Pasadena, California’s, January 1 gala. For 127 years, the city’s extravaganza has successfully stuck to a simple mission: Show a winter-weary nation a better way. For Midwesterners, the day has special pull, thanks to the Rose Bowl’s Big 10... More
Snow and holiday lights dazzled our Instagram fans in the weeks leading up to Christmas. The five most-liked photos of December: 1) A wintry scene in Sycamore, Illinois, by @bookbabym (https://www.instagram.com/p/_FsN_wmzco/).  2) "Winter wonderland" in Cushing, Minnesota, by @laceydobo (https://www.instagram.com/p/_PCwJumzbI/).  3) Rural sunrise near... More
This season, about 400,000 pieces of mail addressed to the North Pole get diverted to the southern Indiana town of Santa Claus. Local volunteer elves hustle to ensure every letter gets a response on behalf of Santa himself (after all, he is quite busy this time of year). A new book, Letters to Santa Claus, showcases a collection of these letters from the past nine decades. We picked one from... More
In November, our Instagram fans loved both the first snow of the season and the last touches of fall color. The five most-liked pictures of the month:  1) Winter wonderland in Lambertville, Michigan, photographed by @indiekayla (https://www.instagram.com/p/-oa1QHGzU1/). 2) Fallen leaves cover Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in northern... More
A good eye. A sense of adventure. And tons of patience. That’s what it takes for 28-year-old Benjamin Olson of Burnsville, Minnesota, to capture his incredible wildlife photos. Ben grew up in the ‘burbs, but his parents often took him fishing, hunting and camping when he was younger. He credits them—along with his grandfather who gave him his first camera—for his passion... More
Rocks in shades of rose, gray, slate and cement stack like optical illusions on the scenic beaches of Minnesota’s North Shore. Think this image is Photoshopped? Think again. These creations (and photos) are the handiwork of Twin Cities resident Peter Juhl, an avid rock stacker. Peter describes rock stacking as the opposite of a magic trick. While magicians... More
At Detroit-based Leadhead Glass, urban renewal comes in the form of a home for your ficus. Entrepreneurs and owners Chad Ackley and Derek Smiertka handcraft terrariums out of materials salvaged from abandoned Motor City homes. Midwest Living chatted with Ackley to discuss the new company and how it's helping reclaim Detroit. Derek Smiertka (left) and Chad... More