About The River

Friday, May 26, 2017

Thank You

Thank You


 

In Flanders Fields

"In Flanders Fields" is a war poem in the form of a rondeau, written during the First World War by Canadian physician and Lt. Col. John McCrae. He was inspired to write it on May 3, 1915, after presiding over the funeral of friend and fellow soldier Alexis Helmer, who died during the Second Battle of Ypres.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

–Lt. Col. John McCrae




My dad shared with me, that he recited, In Flanders Fields at a Memorial Day service, when he was in school. It is something he still is proud of doing and remembers well.

 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Who is knocking at the door?

Hello Friends,
I am just letting out some frustration.
As you know our area was hit by a storm and 2 miles down the road (the National Weather Service as upgraded the tornado to a F 3) ... we have enough to deal with.

Wednesday afternoon, a knock at the door.
I went out to open the door, and this  fella is standing on the deck. He quickly starts telling me how we can get a new roof, windows and so much more. He needs to just take a peek at our roof. Before, I can say a word, he says to me, and points out, "yep, I can see that it is possible, you have this and this."

What?
Who are you? 
What are you doing bothering me?
 
He is off to get his ladder, he does not seem to care that I am telling him, No!

Thankfully, my husband pulls into the driveway. On his bike. My husband rides his bike to work.
He looks at me and the fella. I shake my head and my husband is quickly at my side.

Needless to say, my husband chased the fella off. 
About 10 minutes after this happened, I heard an alert on the radio regarding Storm Chasers, who come in after a storm, knocking on doors.

I will be ready for the next one!

 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Book Reveiw ~ Lilac Girls

Book Review

Lilac Girls
Martha Hall Kelly


 I recently listened to Lilac Girls while driving my Meals on Wheels route.
Have you ever heard a story that just made you want to know more.
Lilac Girls did that to me.

 
Based on a true story of a New York socialite who championed a group of concentration camp survivors known as the Rabbits, this acclaimed debut novel reveals a story of love, redemption, and terrible secrets that were hidden for decades.
Caroline Ferriday is a former Broadway actress and liaison to the French consulate whose life is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939—and then sets its sights on France. An ocean away from Caroline, Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager, sinks deeper into her role as a courier for the underground resistance movement. In Germany, Herta Oberheuser, a young doctor, answers an ad for a government medical position—only to find herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power.
The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious Nazi concentration camp for women. Their stories cross continents, as Caroline and Kasia strive to bring justice to those whom history has forgotten.



If you have read Lilac Girls, tell me, did you like it? Did you dig into the story further?
I wanted to know what happened to Herta Oberheuser, the female German doctor. 

The survival of the girls, the sisterhood the prisoners create was amazing love, on how the prisoners where determined to save the Rabbits.

That is all I better share...let me know if you read it.


 

Monday, May 22, 2017

May Happenings and Joy List Monday


Hello Friends

I only have two classes left and my oral presentation left to complete my Master Gardener class.
 Graduation is May, 30th.

For our final exam we had to pull a plant/tree/shrub out of a hat and do a report on that plant.

My hand pulled Black Chokeberry out of the hat.

I had not a clue what a Black Chokeberry was. 
After my research I think I just may have to plant one in our yard. 
My son Sam, who edited my final paper, thought the same after reading my three page fact sheet. Sam is not a gardener, so I hope I did something right in writing  my paper, if I convinced a non-gardener to plant a Black Chokeberry.

I am working on my oral presentation. It can not be longer than 5 minuets.
The idea is that I am asked about a plant/tree/shrub, like a hotline, I am to be able to answer your questions.


 ♥
Joy List Monday
a weekly ritual
a reminder to stop and pay attention to the little beauties 
and graces that make life magical and to set aside time
for gratitude each day

 ♥ bluebirds ... we have a pair we see on our walk
♥ birthday boy ... our son Atticus turned 15 this past week
 ♥ friends ... calls and texts making sure we were alright after the May, 16th storm
 ♥ a trip to the greenhouse ... I just love the smell of a greenhouse
 ♥ apple blossoms and lilacs ... making a lovely perfume outside
 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

May 16, 2017

Hello Friends,

"When it rains it pours?"
"Up a creek with out a paddle?"

That seems to be how I am feeling as of late.
If you are a regular here at The River, in
April, my dad had a heart-attack. A wee bit of added stress.
May 16th, added just a wee bit more.

May 16th, I was packed up to head to my Master Gardner class. 
 It takes me about 45 minutes to drive to class.
 All day we had a chance of storms.
Just as I was about to leave, the tornado sirens went off. 
My husband and I looked at the radar, the storm was heading for Cameron. My class is north, so I thought I could beat the storm as I drove to class.
I kissed my husband, grabbed my bags and got in the car. I turned on the engine, as I did a golf sized hail hit the car windshield. I screamed!
I turned, there was my husband with a jacket to protect me, got me back in the house and said, "You are not going to class." At this point the storm built in strength.

We had golf sized hail, wind and heavy rain.
We have hail damage to a house window, the roof and our vehicle, we were lucky.

At this time, one person was killed and 25 injured.

If you google or you tube Barron County Wisconsin Storm, many videos come up to view. One that I did watch was filmed by a drone. The destruction, the force of nature is unbelievable. 
I posted a news story at the bottom of my post.

The actual tornado touched down about 2 miles from hour home. 
The area that was hit, happens to be my meals on wheels route. I delivered meals to two elderly gentlemen in the trailer park that was destroyed.

 The power came back on.
Our son Sam came home from work about 9:30pm. He shared stories of his own. 
We began to settle down for the night. Sirens started again. Firetrucks rolled down our street.
At 10:15 pm the Faith Lutheran Church, located three houses down from us, was on fire.

The following report ... 
 
Our bell tower was struck by lightning (?) last evening around 10:15 pm. Firemen worked for about 3 hours to contain the fire. They did an outstanding job! We are very thankful the damage was limited to the bell tower area. We are still touching base with our members this morning as we know that we have one family with a home loss.


 The following photos my husband took as we watched from the end of our sidewalk.





This morning we squeezed each other a little tighter.
Thankful to be safe and praying for those who lost everything.

Carla
 


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Love Matters












 A friend of mine shared this story.
I loved the the following paragraph....


 When I really think about it, I don’t want my son to tell the friend he’s bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, ‘My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.’ That would mean I’d built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his
friend, to add, ‘You’re gonna love it there.’


I will be honest, yes, at times during this adventure of motherhood, I have felt invisible.
I have wanted to be selfish at times. 
Then something tugs at me, reminding me, we only have them for so long, then they grow up.
And yes, I do want them to come home for holiday. 
And yes, I want my boys to say to friends, "You're gonna love it there."

 Remember the baby years? 
Remember potty training?
Remember sleepless nights?
Remember having to say "NO" ...you would get those eyes and the smile, you had to stick to your guns. 

Teen Years
Choosing what battles to fight.
Teaching them to drive.
The first job, in the big world.
Letting them go .... watching them grow up.

Motherhood is no easy job. 
I will be honest, I am blessed to be one.
With all the ups and downs motherhood can bring.
Having my boys hug me in public.
Having my boys come and ask me for advice.
Having my boys say "I love you, Mom."
It is all worth it.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you.
 
 
As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we’re doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.
  

Invisible Mother…
It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I’m on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I’m thinking, ‘Can’t you see I’m on the phone?’ Obviously not; no one can see if I’m on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I’m invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this ? Can you tie this? Can you open this?
Some days I’m not a pair of hands; I’m not even a human being. I’m a clock to ask, ‘What time is it?’ I’m a satellite guide to answer, What number is the Disney Channel?’ I’m a car to order, ‘Right around 5:30, please.’
I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude – but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She’s going, she’s going, she’s gone!?
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was
feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, ‘I brought you this.’ It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn’t exactly sure why she’d given it to me until I read her inscription:
‘To Charlotte, with admiration for the greatness of what you are
building when no one sees.’

In the days ahead I would read – no, devour – the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work: No one can say who built the great cathedrals – we have no record of their names. These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building
was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, ‘Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof, No one will ever see it. And
the workman replied, ‘Because God sees.’

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, ‘I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you’ve done, no sequin you’ve sewn on, no cupcake you’ve baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can’t see right now what it will become.
At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to
sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don’t want my son to tell the friend he’s bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, ‘My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.’ That would mean I’d built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his
friend, to add, ‘You’re gonna love it there.’

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we’re doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women. 

Nicole Johnson’s The Invisible Woman

Friday, May 5, 2017

A Birthday Story



A Birthday Story

This week at my Master Garden class, during our break, we began to discuss our birthdays.

Cindy, "My birthday is 10/10."
I was sitting right next to Cindy, I poked her and laughed, "I am 12/12!"
Karen across the way from me said, "I am 11/11!"

"Ha!"
"You are kidding?" 

Nikki who was listening to our conversation as she walked into the room, said, "I am 9/9."

Now that is a Happy Birthday story!

Have a great weekend!

 ♥
Carla
  
 

Monday, May 1, 2017

Joy List Monday

Happy May Day

May brings us armfuls of delight, Bird - song, warm sun and gardens bright.
Tasha Tudor 

♥ Joy List Monday ♥
a weekly ritual
a reminder to stop and pay attention to the little beauties and graces that make life
magical and to set aside time for gratitude each day

 ♥ daffodils
♥ listening to baseball
 ♥ a surprise package in the mail
 ♥ extra hugs from my boys
 ♥ rhubarb


.... do you have a favorite rhubarb recipe to share?

 

 
 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

The Bad Hair Cut


A little story about my hair, my dad and ice cream.

I have naturally curly hair.
You have to be careful how you cut naturally curly hair. 

I was in 8th grade.
My dad drove me to my hair appointment.
8th grade was a hard time for me. I was going through all the changes that come your way as a girl. I had surgery on both of my feet. I had naturally curly hair and I wanted straight hair.

My dad took me to my hair appointment.
He stayed in the truck, I went in. 
Bev was the cosmetologist that was ready to cut my hair. I do not think we had one person do our hair, my mom would just take the appointment with whoever was available.

Bev gave me a nice hair cut, until she got to my bangs. She cut my bangs, not realizing she needed to leave some hair for the natural curl. 

I paid for the appointment.
I quickly went to the truck. 
The tears started to flow. Down they came as I desperately pulled on my bangs, trying to make them grow back, or pull hair from my head.

My dad really had no idea what to do.
He said, "You do not like your hair cut?"
"No." I cried.

"Let's go for Ice Cream." my dad said.

He drove to the A&W. He went in and let me stay in the truck. As I pondered how to glue hair back on to my hair. He came back with two Twist Cones. He smiled! I smiled!  


It was a special time for me. Just me and my dad. In his own tender way, he told me he understood about the hair cut.



  

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

April 2017 .... a life changer and it is the Hodgepodge


It is Wednesday!
It is time for the Hodgepodge!
Joyce asks the questions.
We answer the questions.






 1. April showers bring May flowers or so the saying goes. Has your April been filled with showers? Yes, weather wise, Wisconsin has seen its share of showers this April. Do you carry an umbrella, wear a slicker, or make a run for it? I have a fun blue rain coat.  

 Besides rain, what else has filled your April? 


 Our oldest son, enjoyed a Happy 17th Birthday!

 

 My dad had a heart attack on April 11th. 
If you follow The River you know my parents are  Wisconsin Dairy Farmers. My parents had a plan if anything should happen to my dad. My mom had to sell the herd the afternoon of my dad's heart attack. A life changer in many ways. 
I am happy to report my dad is recovering. He will be starting his Cardio Rehab today.
He is taking his time heading down to visit the barn. We all told him  that is alright. When he is ready to face that empty barn, we will all be at his side.
  The cows were my dad's favorite part of farming. 

 2. What's something you could you give a 30-minute presentation on at a moment's notice and with zero preparation?

Gardening Tips

3. Share with us a favorite food memory from childhood.

My mom made and still does make the best No Bake Cookies!
Yummy!

 4. What's a song you thought you knew the lyrics to, but later discovered you were wrong?

Home on the Range

my version goes like this


Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam,
Where the deer and the antelope play,
Where someone is heard and there is not a discouraging word,
And the skies are not cloudy all day. 


the correct lyrics 
 
Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam,
Where the deer and the antelope play,
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word,
And the skies are not cloudy all day.   

 5. According to one travel website, the most overrated tourist attractions in America are-
Niagara Falls (NY), Hollywood Walk of Fame (California), Times Square (NYC), Epcot (FL), Seattle Space Needle (WA), and Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market (Boston). How many of these have you seen in person? I have visited Times Square (NYC)  and Quincy Market (Boston) Did you feel like a tourist? I did feel like a tourist, but I was one! Did you care? No, I did not care that I was a tourist. I  enjoyed visiting both Times Square and Quincy Market. Tell us about a place (not on the list) you've visited that might be considered a tourist trap, but you love it anyway.

Duluth, Minnesota

 6. Your signature clothing item?

I like my blue jeans.

 7. What's an experience you've had you think everyone should experience at least once? Why?

 During my stay at the hospital with my dad and family, we were blessed by so many strangers. Some had family in ICU and they too were waiting news on their loved ones.

Why do I say, I think everyone should be blessed by a stranger? Because this world is not as BIG AND UGLY as the Media makes it out. 

8. Insert your own random thought here. 

I wish I would have thought of these jeans.
Golly, my garden jeans are worth $$$$!!!


 

Jeans made to look like you Work Hard so you don’t have to

article by

Mike Rowe

 


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