Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Still here!

Hello to all, no I haven't left the country or fell off the face of the earth. I will be back someday soon to post once again. It has been a busy and long summer. It appears that the 'fall season' it is upon us and I love the cool days and the smells that belong to this time of year. Many good things have happened this summer and there is lots to share.  Blessings to you all and enjoy the sights and smells of this season. :)

Beauty from the back yard.

 Glorious maple and burr oak tree by the pond in the back yard.

 I so love this time of year and all of the colors.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Birthday Celebration For Mike

Our daughter Katie and her husband Chris came home yesterday to visit. They live in the big city. I always love to have them come and this time I did not have to cook one meal. (how did that happen?) Chris is an excellent cook and he had Mike's birthday meal all planned down to the dessert and the wonderful tasting  root beer to drink.The menu was as follows:

Marinated  T-Bone Steak with grilled mushrooms
Pesto Chicken Breast (made with Picholine French olive oil)
Garlic Parmesan Green Beans (fresh beans from the garden)
Grilled Red Potatoes with basil vinaigrette
Corn on the Cob (grilled in the husk)
Fresh sliced garden tomatoes smeared with Pesto Sauce
Strawberry Custard ice cream
Pecan Custard ice cream (and each served with a hot fudge sauce and mixed nuts)
Hank's Gourmet Root Beer

Oh my goodness, it tasted so good. I think we all ate until we could not find any more room to hold it. (well I did save some room for dessert.) They also brought presents and  we watched as Mike opened his birthday gift bag. Katie made her dad a very creative box to hold extra cash for a 'windshield fund.' His work car needs a new windshield and they made a nice donation to Mike's box to save for one. I loved the added touch of using a real map for the paper and the little semi-truck for the front. (imagine that)  :D  It was a nice evening of visiting and watching a baseball game.

This morning we drove to my mother's house and picked her up and then we met Mike's parents at a  restaurant in town. Katie wanted to see all of her grandparents so it worked out well to meet for breakfast. It was a very nice morning and we got caught up on all the news of everyone's life. Family means so much and it seems that everyone gets so busy that time passes quickly and before you realize it you haven't seen them for awhile. We hope to do this again very soon. Everyone had a blessed time.

Happy Birthday Mike! Wishing you a great day!

 Windshield fund can made by Kate.

Mike's mom, step-dad and Katie.

My mom and Katie.

 Our son-in-law Chris and Mike.

Mom, myself and Katie.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Kittens and Pheasants and Kids. Oh My!!

Well today my daughter-in-law sent me photos of the animals at her house today. One of them is a new sweet kitty that my son Scott brought home from work. A guy he works with found a cat in a dumpster and brought it home. He put it in the garage with a litter box, food and water. A month later he ended up with babies. He talked Scott into bringing one home for the girls to have as a pet and to be a friend to their cat Sam. I don't think anyone asked Sam though and so far he isn't happy. Hopefully he will get over it. The girls were so surprised, especially Emma. She had no idea that when she came from shopping with ma-ma that she would find a new pet. Everyone is weighing in on a name. I wanted to name it Me-Me but no self respecting male cat would want that name. Emma wants to name him Hunter, Toes, or Tiger. Chloe wants Fluffy or Cutie. Their ma-ma weighed in with Bruiser, Max or Dex. (she said she has a thing about x's)  It sounds like the jury is still out as to what we will call him.

The next animal I received photos of today was 'Blue'. He is a beautiful pheasant that lives in the next door neighbors back yard. The neighbors Roger and Wendy feed him cracked corn. Today they let Emma, Chloe and other neighborhood kids feed him in the Dowd's back yard. It is quite the sight to look in the yard and see a tame pheasant surrounded by neighborhood kids with handfuls of bird feed. There is always a lot of activity going on at my grand-daughter's home...never a dull moment.

Emma's happy face when she found out she had a new kitten.

Sweet kitten awaiting a name.

Chloe making friends with the new baby.

Look at the beautiful feathers, hence the name 'Blue".

 He walks around like he owns the place.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Hour of Glorious Peace

For the last couple of days after I get my mail, I have been stopping by the BP gas station for a cup of coffee and a cookie that I take with me as I walk up to our local park. I love it there, sitting by the water. I was the only one in the park except for the care taker that was mowing the lawn. I made my way to the the bench in the shade that I love to sit on and gaze across the pond. Today's mission was to pray for my children and grandchildren after I drank my coffee and ate my snicker-doodle cookie. (it was a tasty one too!) I no sooner sat down when four huge great blue herons flew across the pond right in front of where I was sitting. It was so awesome! In a very excited voice, I said 'Lord, look!! Do you see this awesome sight?? Oh my goodness Lord look at them!!!' Of course I knew He seen them before I called to Him but I was soooo excited. They are beautiful and have a very big wing span. One landed in an old wooden stump of a tree across the pond that is about 20 feet tall. The other three perched high in the pines next to the stump. The three did not stay there for long, before one by one they flew to the stump, with the other one. They each took a branch and rested the entire time I was there which was a little over an hour.  I spent the quiet solitude praying and worshiping the Lord in grateful thanks for all of His blessings. Later in the hour an eagle flew over to the left of the water. It too is so majestic and it is my favorite bird. As I was finishing up my worship, I looked across the pond close to the slough and I seen what appeared to be three deer swimming in the water as they crossed the pond. (yes, I did say swimming) I could hardly believe my eyes and I said 'Lord they look like deer or else they are awful big brown fish!' It was amazing to me as I did not know that deer swim. I was so glad that I took that one hour out of a very busy day to spend time with the Lord. Had I not decided to go, I would have missed out on the blessings of the day and the most important would have been the blessing of praying for my children.

Four great blue herons flying in to the pond. 
If you look in the middle of the sky you can see 4 dark specks. 
(You may be able to see them better if you double click on the photo)

  Another photo of them flying in.

And another. (isn't the pond beautiful?)

 The view in front of my bench.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Happy birthday Mom!

Today's post will be a' 77th Happy Birthday' tribute to my mother. Her birthday is Sunday but we celebrated yesterday at my sisters house. We had a wonderful time. The day started out with me taking mom and Kaitlyn (the little girl she babysits) out for breakfast at the new restaurant in town. It was a good breakfast and the interior of the restaurant is beautiful. The place  was 'perking' with activity every where and it was packed. (normally when you see  many cars in the parking lot of a new eatery, a month after they are opened it means really good food.)
We ordered and then drank coffee and visited. I showed mom all the photos I took at our family reunion in North Dakota. She had not seen this side of the family since she married dad many years ago. It was fun to listen to stories that she knew about them at that time in their life. I enjoyed it  a lot. After breakfast we drove to my sister's house for cake, more coffee and the opening of the gifts. (the best part) I think mom enjoyed herself  very much and as her daughter I pray she has many, many, more birthdays to come. I love you mom and you still look young to me.

 Mom and Kaitlyn

 Birthday Girl with her crown.

We love to open birthday presents!!

 My mom, my two sisters and myself. (I like this photo a lot).

Monday, July 5, 2010

Riddles from Sweetie Girl

Today I am going to treat you to a few riddles that my grand-daughter Emma told me recently. I love to listen to her and try to guess what the answer is and I know she loves it as well. She always has a steady stream of riddles to share and I think she saves them up just for me. :D  Okay...

What goes up but never comes down? (your age)

Where do astronauts store their food? (in launch boxes)

What kind of dance do teachers like best? (attendance)

What did the monkey say when he found out his sister had a baby? (well I'll be a monkey's uncle!!) tee hee

What did the beaver say to the tree? (it was nice gnawing you)

And the last one which is my favorite:
What did the frog order at the fast food restaurant? (a large croak and french flies) I love it!!

As long as I was treating you to a few riddles I decided to share a couple of photos of my sweet grand-daughter. I love everything about her!!! She has the sweetest face, freckles and all, plus the prettiest red hair that I have ever seen. I love her and she shares a special place in my heart with her younger sister Chloe. One of the best blessings in my life is being called 'grammy.'

 Sweet Emma

I love this candid shot of her looking into the water.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My Town, USA Part 2

I am going to share more today about my town and it's history. I went to the public library  and asked if they had any history about my town. I was given a book to read that is the complete history of the county in which I live. My town was included with a lot more history than I had known about before. I am going to quote often from this publication.

A dam was built early in my towns history and a mill next to the dam. Taken from the 'History of Barron County' it states 'In the spring of 1879, Mr. Anderson (one of the founders of the village of Dallas and the builder of the dam and mill) interviewed Mr. Foster, in regard to moving the store and post office up near the mill. the suggestion was heartily received and Mr. Foster and his family, the store building, and the post office were in a short time transplanted to a beautiful spot directly across the square from the mill. All this was on the west side of the creek, which by damming had become a pretty lake. Business on the east side of the pond was started by Knute Espeseth, who started a general store.'

Mr. Anderson's mill was at first a grist mill, but later rollers were installed. In 1915 power was generated from the mill for the village electric light service. In 1880, Mr. Anderson started a sawmill, and later added planing and shingle departments.

With the dam built, the mills established, the post office located and the Foster and Espeseth stores running, the village began to grow. Blacksmith shops were established at various times by various residents. Pelton Brothers opened a hardware store, Torger Olson a harness and repair shop, Ole Christianson a shoe shop, William S. Foster, the Foster house, Martin Grannis a cabinet shop, and two more general stores were opened.

In the early days of the village, the Patrons of Husbandry was a strong organization, and a Grange was established. (like the Grange Charles Ingall in House on the Prairie belonged to.) Dallas had grown into quite the town. My grandma Lillian used to tell me that when she was a young girl if you wanted to go where things were really happening, you would visit "my town.' On Friday evenings she said there would be free movie showings.People that attended would bring their own chairs and a big white sheet would be put on the side of a building. After dark the the movie would be shown and grandma said practically the whole town would show up. I always loved to hear her stories about her wonderful life as a young girl growing up in the country.

Well, there is more history to tell about my town so I guess at a later date we will have 'My Town Part 3'.
As I have been telling this story it makes me love my community even more.

Our village dam.

 The pond in front of the dam where lots of wildlife come to feed and drink.

Donated bench at the park where my husband and I love to sit and watch the wildlife and birds.


The beautiful view from the park bench.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Family Reunion Craft Swap

I am leaving soon to go to a family reunion in North Dakota. It is family on my dad's side. He had 24 brothers and sisters. (12 of which are half brothers and sisters). One of the fun things we will be doing is having a craft swap. Everyone that signed up is bringing 15 items they have made to swap with the others. I decided to make hand made cards. (imagine that!) I will package three cards in a cellophane to be given away. The grand total I made in the past two days was about 60 cards. I wanted to keep it simple since I had to make so many, but I am pleased with how they turned out. As I created my cat Annie slept in the chair next to me. She loves being where I am all throughout the day and I enjoy it too except when she decides to lay down in the middle of all my creating and it is usually on top of my scrapbook paper. She is quite' the cat' and my husband says 'spoiled rotten'. I say, 'I have no idea what he is talking about'.  :D

One of three cards for swap.

Card two for swap.

Card design for the third one was  borrowed from www.simplicitybylateblossom.blogspot.com
She has an awesome blog and she creates cards very simplistic using white cardstock and ink.

Sleepy Annie.

Annie 'zonked out'.

Monday, June 7, 2010

My Town, USA Part 1

Boy time flies when you're having fun! It has been a while since I posted. My husband has a new shift than what he has been working for the past  5 years so my time is spent different than it was. We are both trying to get used to the time change and little sleep as our routine is all changed around. We do like him being home at the different time though. :)

Well, yesterday I decided to take my camera around town and snap some photos of the place I love best...my little town. We have lived here for about 38 years in the same house. We raised our 3 children here, 2 boys and a girl and after all this time I am still in love with my town. (recognized as a village). It is one hundred and forty years old and was settled in 1870 when three men came to this area from Norway and liked what they seen. They brought their families, built homes and began to farm near a creek. The men were Ole Knutson, his brother-in-law Nels Tollefson, and his son Tollef Nelson. (do you notice anything interesting about their names?) I am going to quote from the 'Cenntennial' book. "Nels Tollefson is said to be the first Norwegian settler in the Township. He settled on the west side of Pine Creek. His homestead consisted of 160 acres. Mr. Tollefson cleared 100 acres and built a set of log buildings which he later replaced by frame structures. Supplies had to be hauled by oxen or carried on foot from the next big town which was 50 miles away. (remember we didn't have much for roads back then and certainty no interstate highways.) On trips to the city he would influence friends to come join him in his newly found paradise. Often the family would awaken to find someone camping on their doorstep, and there was wall to wall people while another home was hewn out of the woods."

"Another pioneer who came to Dallas the same year was Knute Stenseth Amundson. He took a homestead of 160 acres of wild land in Section 2. In 1903 he sold part of his place to his son, John. In 1913 the house was destroyed by fire and a modern home was built in its place. He was married to Anna Wintrone and had nine children. they were Clara, Genard, Herman, Lloyd, Wallace, Griffin, Ben, Kenneth, and Lawrence."  (my friend, Judy, I think the homestead was where you live now.) There is a lot more history to tell about and I will do so in the next part of the story in a future post. I am including photos of my town here.

My photo walk started out here. This house is one of the first homes built on our side of town in the late 1800s. It has had a few add-ons since that time. It is situated along the pond. This is a nice neighborhood with very friendly neighbors that you can count on.

Our flags flown from Memorial day until after the 4th of July.

One of many stain glass windows in the Lutheran Church.

Memorial Gardens at the church.

The old Farmers Store which now sells antiques.

Old wringer wash machine planter in front of the store.

Some of the old advertising on the side of the store.

Our community garden. The boxes are what some of the children planted. They even painted them. So cute!

The old egg factory which is now a brewery.

Well that is all for now but will post more photos as the story continues. It is so nice living in a town that you love so much, you could not imagine living any where else...like my town.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Garden Almost In

Well, we have been working on getting the garden planted for the past three days. we are almost done. I still need to plant the potatoes, onions and zucchini squash...oh and the pea pods that my friend told me about. I really do not like to plant garden but I do love it when it starts to grow and I do not mind pulling weeds. The best part for me besides eating what I have grown is to share the bounty with my neighbors. I like to package up a variety of produce to give away. It is always appreciated and for me it makes gardening more enjoyable.

I have been taking photos of my plants in different stages of growth around the yard. They are so far ahead at this time from others years. I just may be able this year to enjoy my roses and peonys before the rose chafers hatch out. That would make me very happy. Everything looks so good and is nice and green. Some of the baby birds are hatching out  of their eggs. I watched four little baby blackbirds with their ma-ma today.  They were so noisy and so cute. I love this time of year. Having the sunlight on my face as I work outside is so therapeutic for me and is just what the doctor ordered. Hope you all have a bright and sunny weekend doing something you love. Happy Memorial Day to all.

The perennial bed in the front yard.

My beautiful Mother's Day rose bushes from Scott.
He bought 3 of them for me when he was stationed in Hawaii about 10 years ago.

Ferns on the north side of the house.

The pond out back. ( I was watching a great blue heron)

Hosta garden on south side of the house.

Another pic of the front yard flower bed.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Wonderful Visit

We arrived home a day later then expected as I locked our ignition keys in the trunk of the car right before we were to come home. The minute I slammed down the trunk I knew what I had done. It was a Sunday so no one could come out to try to open the car. We had to wait until Monday morning. Aside from that we had a wonderful visit. I don't have any photos to post yet (except for the ones I took of James at his house). The wedding and graduation photos aren't ready to go yet but when I receive them I will post them.
I have been working on things for the store Wisconsin Local Handmade. The opening date is May 28th. We hope to share space with at least 50 vendors this season. (last year we had 35.) I look forward to visiting with the people I met last season. There is a lot of variety in what the vendors offer. There will also be a Farmer's Market on Friday nights. I love fresh produce so I look forward to buying and using it in my daily menus.
Have any of you planted your gardens yet? We haven't but hope to this week.  We should be safe to plant now without having any more frost days...well I hope so anyway.
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Pincushions ready to go to the store.

James practicing his swing.

More practice.

Perfect' follow through' swing.

Showing us what he has learned on his guitar.
(Everything this kid accomplishes makes me want to stand up and cheer!)

James playing a song for us and then singing too. 
(he has a good voice)
Posing with his new Peavey amplifier and electric guitar that was given to him as a gift.
(both the guitar and amp used to belong to my cousin Rick who was a steel guitarist.)