Thinking of the family cabin conjures up the word grateful. I never knew our grandfather, but because of the cabin I feel like I do. Our Nannie, his wife, kept their dream alive by not selling it when he died. Not much has changed — one simple room that sleeps seven — and it has been maintained.

It’s been 86 years since Grandpa and Nannie obtained the land on which they built the place overlooking Lake Roosevelt in Outing, Minn. Five generations have now slept within the cabin’s four walls. Grandpa died at 46 years young, having spent only one vacation at the cabin with its exterior completed. This could have been the end of our cabin story, and I wasn’t even born yet. Her family rallied around her, and Nannie kept the cabin. The interior was finished with traditional tongue-and-groove knotty pine, completing our grandparents’ vision.

I have had the privilege to go to this peaceful place for all of my 63 years. It clears my mind. Worries disappear. I watch the sun rays stream through the trees in the morning and reflect off the lake when the sun sets. A cup of coffee never tastes better. Food is enjoyed around conversations that don’t happen anywhere else. The loons are my favorite tune. The cabin has no frills, true to my grandparents’ simple ways. There have been countless memories of family and friends enjoying a simple cabin on a beautiful lake. The saying is “Nothing lasts forever,” but I am grateful our grandparents’ dream has lived on.

Dylan Leyden Erickson, Duluth