About The River

Monday, December 11, 2017

Joy List Monday and The Three Legged Wolf

 The three legged wolf.
If you missed my story about our three legged wolf, read the post shared above.
Many asked to see the three legged wolf after reading his story of how he got a place on our Christmas tree.  His back grey leg is missing starting at the knee down.


 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

 ♫ fresh snow
♫ making new and old time favorite Christmas treats
♫ listening to Christmas music
♫ reading Advent each evening together as a family
♫ feeding the birds, squirrels and rabbits 
♫ homemade ornaments
♫ enjoying preparing for Christmas
 


Friday, December 8, 2017

A Jingle, Jingle Table Place Settings


Using burlap, glitter snowflakes, candy canes and jingle bells I created these fun place settings for our Christmas dinner table.


 I found the jingle bells at Wal Mart.



Everyone will be ready to play Jingle Bells for Christmas!

 

Thursday, December 7, 2017

An Update on Marv and Advice from Centenarians

For those of you who have been reading The River for sometime, know of my 90 year old friend Marv. We met in 2012, he stopped me and asked me a question about an insurance company in our village.  From that point on, we became fast friends.
 
I have done posts about him regarding gardening, he has been my gardening mentor for the last few years. We garden together at the Community Garden.
 
Marv heads south each and every last week of October. He will call us from Texas on the days that it is -20 degrees in Wisconsin.  Tell us how he is enjoying fresh grapefruit on the beach. 
We made these grapefruit for Marv and put them in the freezer for his return to Wisconsin in late March. Snowballs!! Add a little food coloring and you have Wisconsin Grapefruit.
 
This winter Marv will be spending winter here in Wisconsin. He lost his cabin in Texas due to Hurricane Harvey. He plans to head back down to Texas the winter of 2018. Did I tell you Marv is 90! He is full adventure. I honestly think that is the key to long life. 
That brings me to the photo above of the Bear Trax. Marv brought that sweet treat to me after a drive he took.  He told me he plans to explore Wisconsin this winter, when the roads are nice and clean. He will pick a direction and explore.
 He also plans to do some research on his ancestors. 

That brings me to the Advice of Centenarians, this interview was published in a paper that I deliver monthly to my Meals on Wheels folks.
Here are a few tips that I think are right on...

Exercise Your Brain 
play cards, do word puzzles, draw, learn a new skill

(this brings me back to thinking of Marv, he is an avid photographer. He had a camera that required film. He wanted to upgrade to a new camera. He would have to learn so much about the new digital ways of the camera. He was a bit nervous at first when my husband started to teach him about the new camera, but soon he relaxed and started to play with the camera.)
Marv has taken so many amazing photos of wildlife, I always encourage him to enter the photos in a contest.

Have a Positive Attitude
see the glass as half - full
be the change you want to see in the world

Keep working after you retire
 volunteer  

(this also brings me back to Marv, he gardens each and every year. He gives most of his vegetables away to others.)


 I hope I am able to keep on like Marv is when I am 90. He is inspiration to me.
 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

It is December! It is time for the Hodgepodge!

It is the countdown to Christmas and it is the Hodgepodge.
Joyce asks the questions.
We answer the questions.


1. What title would you give this current chapter of your life?
Take it Slow and Steady

Our oldest son graduates from high school May of 2018. He has been accepted and will start college August of 2018.
Our youngest is taking behind the wheel as I type this post.
I am taking it all in, slow and steady, I say to myself as these two boys of ours start to reach for their dreams.

 2. December 6 is National Microwave Oven Day. Who knew? Besides popcorn and coffee reheats, what's the most common thing you microwave? Could you get along without a microwave?
I like to make some of my frozen veggies in the microwave. 
In the long run, yes, I think I could get along with out a microwave.

3. If you could insert yourself into any Christmas carol and experience the lyrics in real life, which Christmas carol lyric would you choose and why? 
Away in the Manger
Growing up on a farm, I would always ponder this song when I was sweeping up feed to the cows. 
After the milking was done, the cows were all cozy in the barn for the night, the smell of fresh hay and hearing the cows chewing. We had cats that would sit on the backs of the cows and go to sleep. It was a cozy place, our barn on a December night.

I would like to be with Jesus in the manger with the cattle.

  4. Describe the most beautiful drive you've ever taken.

 Wisconsin in Autumn is full of beautiful drives. Lovers Lane is one of my favorites located in Washburn County.

 5. What's something on your Christmas list this year? (an actual list or figuratively speaking, either one)

Baking some new treats with the boys. We have our usual favorites, but I would like to try a few new recipes with the help of the boys. Both of my boys enjoy helping in the kitchen.

 6. Insert your own random thought here.

 Our dear friend Marv lost his cabin during Hurricane Harvey. He will be spending his winter at his cabin here in Wisconsin. He will head back to Texas next winter. Marv is 90! He drives to Texas every October and drives back to Wisconsin at the end of March.
I am happy he is here for the winter. We are having great fun teasing him about snow, cold and making snowmen for his enjoyment. As soon as we get a BIG snowfall we plan to build him a huge snowman. 


 

Friday, December 1, 2017

Ornaments and Memories

'Tis the Season
It is that time, it is time to decorate. One of my favorite things to do with the boys is decorate our tree. I know this will be a special year for it, because our oldest will graduate the spring of 2018.

Each year for as long as I can remember we have been doing the following with the boys. 
We pick out the perfect to us Christmas tree.
We get our tree set up just right in the living room.
We string the twinkle lights.
We make some popcorn to eat and hot chocolate to drink.
We open the ornament boxes and the memories pour out as well.
Each ornament tells us a story.


We have stories of all sorts of ornaments.

My Jim Morrison ornament and the boys asking "Who in the world is this mom" and me introducing them to The Doors.

My husband has his Hallmark Hockey players. Most of them Pittsburgh Penguins.

My three legged wolf. While dating my husband, I worked part time for his parents as a waitress/dishwasher. I was asked to help with a very fancy party. The people who hosted the party gave each of the staff a gift. Wonderful chocolates and an ornament. I received a three legged wolf. My husband and I opened our gifts from the evening together, he was one of the bartenders, well I kept that three legged wolf.  Once we got married and our first Christmas, I pulled the three legged wolf out of the tissue. We laughed all over again.


 And now for this lovely girl. My husband hates this ornament. He always tries to put her in the back of the tree. The story about her, I rescued her from the trash can. I worked at the Cameron Community Center and a co worker brought in some of her ornaments she was going to toss. I simply had to save her. 

It is the sequins that my husband really does not like. When I found this Santa, again needing rescue from the trash. I just knew who I needed to wrap it up for and give on Christmas day.





My boys gave me this sweet ballerina when they were little. Something special about that first gift they give you. You know they saved their money and thought of just the right gift.

A peek at a few more.
 







Do you have ornaments that bring back memories?



Monday, November 27, 2017

Joy List Monday



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

 ♥ nature
little caterpillars on the move on a warm November day

 ♥ warm November days
above average temperatures for late November in Wisconsin

 ♥ the feeling of the holidays 
it is starting to look like Christmas, the decorating has started

♥ movie date with my family
Murder on the Orient Express

♥ fresh baked chocolate chip cookies
yum


 

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Small Business Saturday and The Winner Is ....

Happy Small Business Saturday
Do you have a favorite small business?
Do you have a favorite local shop you like to do business?


 First observed in the United States on November 27, 2010, it is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which feature big box retail and e-commerce stores respectively. By contrast, Small Business Saturday encourages holiday shoppers to patronize brick and mortar businesses that are small and local. Small Business Saturday is a registered trademark of American Express.

My small business started in 2013. It is just a wee little business, for one person to handle. I do not make enough money to support our family, just enough to continue to have fun spreading joy and flowers. My goal for 2018 is to continue to deliver flowers and smiles.

 The winner of the Small Business Saturday giveaway is Jessica of Barefoot by the Sea

Thank you to all who entered the Small Business Giveaway.
  

Monday, November 20, 2017

Joy List Monday and Happy Thanksgiving

Frosty Milkweed

Joy List Monday
♥ a weekly reminder  ♥

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

♥ sunshine
after two weeks of damp mist, cold to the bones grey November weather


 ♥ kitten silliness
Penelope is a sweetheart, she likes to sneak up and attack when you are not looking

♥ thanksgiving dessert
homemade cinnamon ice cream all ready to go for Thanksgiving dessert  

♥blog friendships
thankful for all of my blog friends
your encouragement, friendly advice and the friendships we have built over the years of blogging makes my heart swell with gratitude

Happy Thanksgiving my friends.




 

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Small Business Saturday Giveaway


Back in 2013 I started The Little Garden That Could. Each year I added another piece to my business. I started out with selling flowers at my Farm Stand in front of my house. The summer of 2016 I also sold at the Bruce Farmers Market.
2017 I wanted  to try to have more control over how many flowers I would need to harvest. I created my Flower Subscription Service.

 

This week I added two more features to my website Flower Shop.

Living Gifts
sweet succulents that I can deliver to your friend or loved one
to bring a wee bit of green to the office or home

Stationery
photo cards using photos we took from our garden

 
 


Pollinators in the Garden





 Small Business Saturday Giveaway

 Small Business Saturday is November 25th.
To celebrate I am giving away four cards from our Autumn collection, featured below.
  To enter all you have to do is leave me a comment or e mail. I know I have some readers who have trouble leaving comments on the blog. I appreciate all of my readers and customers.

The winner of the giveaway will be announced on Small Business Saturday, November 25th.



Thank You for all the support and love!

Carla
 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Welcome Penelope

Welcome Penelope


 Meet our new kitten.
Penelope has stolen our hearts.


 Of course she has a story to go along with moving in with our family.
During my week on my Meals on Wheels route, while stopping into the kitchen to pick up the meals, one of the cooks mentioned she found a kitten on the side of the road. She said it was Siamese and just the sweetest thing. She asked if I knew of anyone who would like a Siamese.
She showed me a few photos of her and I knew right away who would love to have her, me.

Jane brought her to our home and showed us the wounds she had. We all felt she must have been hit by a car. My dad helped us clean her wounds. She would purr when we cleaned her wounds and put her medicine in her ears. She had mites in her ears. They were so gross!!  

She slowly began to heal. She began to eat more and more. 
She got stronger and stronger.
Then one day, we knew she would be okay. We all gave a cheer.

She loves her pet (fake) mice, cozy rugs and sitting on your lap.


 

Saturday, November 11, 2017

11.11



In  honor of today, I am sharing a journal post my son wrote. I asked if I could share it. It has to do with the visit that we took to The Highground.


The Highground is a 155 acre memorial park located in Neillsville, Wisconsin. It pays tribute to veterans of all major 20th and 21st century wars that the United States has participated in. They have monuments dedicated to all of these major conflicts, including the ongoing War on Terror. They have also left space on their Korean War monument for when the conflict is over and peace is secured. I particularly thought that leaving that space open was very thoughtful of them, it shows the level of concern that the builders of this park have towards these conflicts and the care they show to those who were involved. Very touching.


The park is quite adamant about being known as a Veteran's Memorial Park, rather than a War Memorial. I respect that about the park. Multiple efforts have been made to make this park especially dedicated to veterans. One of the coolest gestures to this, is the WW1 doughboy statue. Most of the doughboy statues in the United States are posed with their rifles at the ready and their hand posed ready to throw a grenade. Highground changed their statue to show the doughboy holding his rifle by the front stock, with his hand out in a gesture of greeting to all whom enter the park. The staff has done an amazing job of making the park a special place for veterans. 

A very stirring PTSD walking path is located in the woods. 

The Learning Center is a building located outside of the main park. It has over 4,000 books available, a computer area, and room dedicated to all the soldiers from Wisconsin who have died in recent conflicts. 

My time at The Highground Memorial Park helped me to truly appreciate the sacrifice that so many brave men and women have made for this country. It was an eye opening experience that I would recommend to anyone who is a veteran or not.


Sam TePaske


 

Friday, November 10, 2017

On the Road Friday ~ The Highground Verteran's Memorial Park ~ part 2 ~


 Welcome to On the Road Friday.
Over the Labor Day weekend our family visited The Highground Veterans Memorial Park.

The Highground is a special park. It seeks to continue to focus on the healing for all who come, regardless of the name of the battle which left scars.

It is the vision of The Highground to honor human courage and sacrifice wherever it is displayed, without either denying or glorifying the pain and suffering of war and of life.

 Kilroy Was Here
During World War II this was the symbol for the American Serviceman.

 Wisconsin Persian Gulf Tribute

An honor for our newst veterans. The mission reads " May this tribute honor all branches of America's Military who served through multiple conflicts in the Middle East while marching forward in the Global War on Terrorism and be a place of hope so that we do not walk past you but with you. Let this be an anchor for education and solace while securing in memory sacrifices made. With hope and prayer, the Wisconsin Persian Gulf Tribute will provide a safe haven for all to reflect and to heal." 



 Fragments
This was the memorial that really moved my heart.

The Vietnam Veterans Tribute
known as Fragments

is the first veterans tribute in the United States to include a women in the statuary. Under her poncho she carries the burden of the Wisconsin service men killed in Vietnam. The 1244 names are inscribed on the bundles of bamboo-shaped bronze rods in the back of the statue. They are interspersed with wind chimes ~ never meant to be read but to be voiced in sound so that the prayers left here go out to the hillsides and beyond. 

You will notice that not one of the figures in the statue is complete. They flow into one, much like war, each are dependent on each other and strengthen each other. The rifle is turned upside down - a sign that a Medivac is needed;  a piece of orange glass is seen as a reminder of Agent Orange. Many veterans gave their lives afterwards as a result of exposure to toxic chemicals.

The artist did not sign the statue. "It was signed with the cost of things. It was signed in sound. It was signed by us all."
 




The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they're protecting us. Tom Clancy
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/veteransday
 Honor to the soldier and sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his country’s cause. Honor, also, to the citizen who cares for his brother in the field and serves, as he best can, the same cause.
 -Abraham Lincoln
The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they're protecting us. Tom Clancy
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/veteransday
The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they're protecting us. Tom Clancy
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/veteransday
The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they're protecting us. Tom Clancy
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/veteransday
The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they're protecting us. Tom Clancy
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/veteransday

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving it is The Hodgepodge


Thanksgiving poppers ~ another past idea for a table setting for Thanksgiving. I made poppers, I will share more down in my answer  # 6 (in the random). I also made pumpkin pretzels. Dip pretzels in orange colored white chocolate and add a green M&M.

 Pretzels
M&M's 
Candy Melt


It is Wednesday and that means it is time for the Hodgepodge.
Joyce asks the questions.
We answer the questions.






 1.  In a rut, in a jam, in the groove, out of synch, off balance, out of touch...which saying best fits some area of your life currently (or recently)? Explain.


 In the groove. We have our holiday plans all finalized for traveling to be with family. Other plans are falling into place for Christmas preparations.

 2. What is it about somebody else's style of work (coworker/employee/shared volunteer project/household chore) that makes you crazy? Why?

My buddy that I do our Meal on Wheels route with. We work two weeks on two weeks off. We will sub for each other if something comes up. Most of the time we try to schedule doctor appointments and vacations during our two weeks off.
My buddy on the the rotation, asks me the night of the next day to sub for him, if he needs. Drives me crazy, because I am a planner. He is not, so these are doctor appointments that he has known about for weeks!! He asks me the night of! Making it very difficult for me to sub for him.

 3. What's a tradition that always makes you feel at home?

Favorite foods, games, movies and stories.

 4. A favorite song with a girl's name in the title or lyrics? Any reason why this is a particular favorite?


This is my sisters favorite, it came to mind when I read the question. I am not sure why it is a favorite. I will have to ask her when I see during the Thanksgiving holiday.

 
5. Share a favorite quote, verse, or saying relating to gratitude or thanksgiving.
  
This is from my friend Anne at My Giant Strawberry
 
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

6. Insert your own random thought here. 



  What are Indian Corn Poppers? Well, you use a paper towel roll or toilet paper roll and fill it with treats. I used Kit Kat bars, stickers and added a question. We have a fun game called Family Dinner Table Topics. I had Sam and Atticus look for some fun questions to put into the poppers. Here is an example of some of the fun questions. Which wild animal would you like to tame and keep as a pet?  If you lived during the Gold Rush would you have journeyed West to strike it rich? If you could speak another language which would you choose?


 

Friday, November 3, 2017

On The Road Friday ~ The Highground Veterans Memorial Park ~ part 1 ~


 In honor of  Veteran's Day, I am going to break down our visit to The Highground Veterans Memorial Park into two posts.  We visited The Highground over the Labor Day weekend.

It is the mission of The Highground to honor veterans and their families and to educate about the cost of things --- human cost.
It is the vision of The Highground to honor human courage and sacrifice wherever it is displayed, without either denying or glorifying the pain and suffering of war and of life.

The park is located 4 miles west of Neillsville, Wisconsin on Highway 10. The park is open 24/7 and is open year round.


 One area of the  park is dedicated to PTSD. 
The area is a beautiful wooded area with in the 155 acre park. 


 Nestled in the area are four miles of hiking trails.


 Along the trails are benches that can turn into a chair and table.


 Welcome
 Good Bench ~ Good Spot ~ Good Company

Fun sayings were on each bench.


The Treehouse is nestled among the four miles of hiking trails. The tree house is uniquely structured around a 170 year old green ash tree.


 The wooded area is beautiful. 
The time in the woods is peaceful. I pray the PTSD program will be successful. I do believe nature can relax and clear the mind. I know it helps me to get away and outside if I am having a difficult day.



 The trails are carpets of soft moss.
 


 I am the short one!


 We found a blackberry patch!


"We heal the past by bringing its lessons into our hopes for the future."

The Highground

 
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