Who is Thor?
Thor Loka (Liz's grandfather) was born in 1890 in Hægebostad, Norway. He immigrated to North Dakota at age 17 to work on the bonanza farms in the Red River Valley. As a new American citizen, Thor changed his last name to Logan. In 1911 he married Hilda Lovsteen, another Norwegian immigrant. Thor and Hilda managed the Comstock Hotel in Moorhead, Minnesota, before buying a ranch in rural Sheyenne, North Dakota. Thor and Hilda had five children and seven grandchildren.
Liz has many happy memories of the Norwegian traditions that imbued her family gatherings, especially the food customs Thor and Hilda continued from Norway. Liz's grandparents served Norwegian food at every family gathering, from lutefisk (lye-soaked cod), fiskeboller (fish balls), and sild (herring) to rømmegrøt (sour cream pudding), fattigman ('poor man's cookies'), and krumkake ('crumb cookies'). Lefse was a family favorite. When they ran out of counter space while baking, they covered the beds with fresh homemade pastries. They made lefse in the fall when the outdoor temperatures cooled, making it a perfect addition to celebrate holidays and other special occasions.