We depend on the ice and the snow to make things go up in these parts, and without them things can get pretty tricky for businesses that depend on tourism.

The ice is just starting to form, and in the perfect world, we will get a foot or two and then a good dumping of powder.

But what about the septic systems? OK, maybe 6 inches of powder followed by some serious ice-making temperatures and then snow on top - maybe that is a better plan.

As we wait for "good ice," maybe it's time to get the Christmas list checked off. If you are shopping for the sportsman/sportswoman, some things they might like to see in their stocking or under the tree:

• A ticket for the Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza (Jan. 23).

• Hank's Beef Jerky.

• Hand warmers.

• Toe warmers

• A trail camera.

• Salmo Chubby Darters.

• A gift certificate to their favorite store (or guide service).

• Turkey calls.

• A remote car starter.

• A pair of choppers.

• Tickets to the super bowl (Vikes vs. Colts).

• Tickets to a Twins game at the new field.

• A headlamp.

• A Weatherby.

WALLEYEDAN Eigen may be reached at (218) 839-5598, walleyedan@brainerd.com or www.walleyedan.com.