About The River

Monday, December 31, 2012

A fresh start...Welcoming 2013

It's a Wonderful Life

Each New Year's we add a slip of paper into our memory bulbs hanging on our Christmas tree. We started this when the boys were first able to share their memories. We write some of the things we did as a family, individual achievements and losses.

Our family went through a lot of change during the year of 2012. Change is not always easy, but what we learned is it brings you closer to God as you walk through it, and closer to family and friends who walk with you.

As we say Good Bye to 2012 tonight, I want to share few thoughts from It's a Wonderful Life....to help us walk into 2013.

"Remember no man is a failure who has friends" 

You see, in the movie George has spent the last hour and half battling the belief that he was a failure, that his life has not amounted to much.
 Clarence reminds him that even though our stories often turn out differently then we expect, what really counts is not what we do with our talents, but whom we serve through them.

That's what makes a man rich: the number of people who come into his life and leave it changed.

Sending you 2013 blessings and that yes, we can make a difference by spreading LIGHT in this dark world together.

Happy New Year 
Photo Credits:
The Best Picture Project
Simplify by Camille Roskelly
Writing helps:
Jeff Goins - Writer

Friday, December 28, 2012

The last Friday of 2012

On the Road Friday
Can you believe it is the last Friday of 2012?
What a fun year, and we have taken so many trips together.
So here we go on our last Friday of 2012...to Hudson, Wisconsin. We visited Hudson earlier this December, to visit the Octagon House. The Historic Octagon House 
is decorated  for Christmas in late November. It is amazing, well worth the trip. On December 7th, they have Lamp lit tours, music and refreshments. When I say lamp lit, I mean old time lamp light. Beautiful!

Our family also likes to look at houses...we would love to go inside all of them too. Third Street of Hudson, Wisconsin was the street to live on back in 1800's ... lets take a peek at some beautiful homes.
Let me know what one is your favorite.

I liked this one a lot! But it was so hard for me to pick just one.

Sitting inside of the porch was a huge Nutcracker. I loved how he was guarding the door.

What do you think of this style?

I love the porch.

The Historic Octagon House

The house was built for Judge John Shaw Moffat and his wife, Nancy Bennet Moffat, New Yorkers who arrived in Hudson in 1854 with their young daughter, Mary. The Octagon House is a fine example of the novel eight-sided dwelling popular in America in the mid 1800's. Such a house was considered conducive to healthy living as light and air could enter from eight directions.

My other favorite!

My oh my, I love this house.  What do you think, should we knock? Wouldn't be fun to see how it is decorated! Or enjoy a cup of tea in the back room. Just in case you are reading this blog and happen to live here, lets get together for tea, at your place. :)   Okay, now it is your turn, what one is your favorite?  
 To end our last On the Road Friday of 2012...how about some Wisconsin trivia?

How did Hudson, Wisconsin get its name?
Many New Yorkers came to Hudson via the St. Croix River. When looking from the landing it reminded them of the Hudson back in New York. Ta da...Hudson, Wisconsin.

Have a great weekend friends. Thank you for taking a little trip with me to Hudson, Wisconsin.  

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Pink Peppermint Cookies

Pink Peppermint Cookies
 Pink Peppermint Cookies
1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
10 to 12 drops of red food coloring
3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon chocolate syrup

In a mixing bowl, cream 3/4 cup butter and the sugar. Beat in the egg, food coloring and peppermint extract. Combine 1 3/4 cups flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt; add to creamed mixture. Shape into a ball. Cover and chill for 1-2 hours. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine chocolate syrup and remaining butter and flour; stir until well blended. Spoon into a pastry bag with a small round tip. Shape dough into 3/4 in ball. Place on ungreased baking sheets; flatten into 1 1/2 inch circles. Pipe chocolate mixture on top of cookies in simple holiday designs. Bake at 375 degrees for 5 to 7 minutes.

I am planning to make this cool peppermint cookie for Valentine's Day too. This cookie is very good, my family loved them.

Have  a Pepperminty Day!  

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Celebrating December

Hello Friends,
I hope you enjoyed Christmas.
It can come so quick. All the preparations, gift wrapping, gift making, cookie baking, and so on. We get so excited to give our gifts. We get all excited to see that loved one.  It can make some of us sad after it is over. As family leaves or you head back home. You are so busy getting ready for that time to celebrate with family...and you do and it is time to say good bye. Sometimes you get the Christmas blues, after Christmas.

I was busy preparing and enjoying all the extras Christmas offers, I plan to share some with you this week, as I soak in the family time I was blessed to have.


We love to attend our local Christmas Parade. It always amazes me how they create the floats to have the lights aglow, Christmas music playing and candy canes a flying.

Celebrating December with our local Christmas Parade.
I love the lights on this one.

Christian Bikers...they always hand out a great poem sharing the true meaning of Christmas.

Our local telephone company. This one is for you Jonas and Cedric.

A Harley Davidson kind of Christmas.

I love waving at the fun little girls.

We like shopping here for our dog, cats and fish.

Yes, that is a real dog. We loved this float. It was advertising a new store opening in Rice Lake.

 "WE LOVE YOUR DOG"...we yelled.

Santa! Here he comes. Yes, we have real reindeer dashing down main street of Rice Lake.  
My Dear Readers, Merry Christmas to you. If you are like me...and a bit like...where did the time go
We can celebrate again together as we share what we did for Christmas 2012!


Monday, December 17, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas
Wishing all my dear readers a great Christmas season. I will be taking a few days off from blogging to spend time with family.

Recipe for a Happy Christmas
Fill a house with equal parts of Love, Hope and Peace.
Add the Joy of childeren, the Strength of older people, and the Spirit of Christ.
Spread over all the Blessings of Contentment. 
Season with music of Laughter and some Mistletoe Kisses. Warm before a crackling fire. Serve with, Great Welcome and Much Christmas Cheer.

Susan Branch
Merry Christmas Friends and Happy New Year!      

Friday, December 14, 2012

Giveaway Winner

Sharon K won the December giveaway!
Thank you to all who entered the giveaway...be on the look out for another chance in 2013!

I usually do a, On The Road Friday, on Friday's.
But my usual computer is going  coconuts right now.

We will be heading to the Octagon House in Hudson, WI.

We had a wonderful tour guide and it was all decorated for Christmas. It was a great time and well worth the drive for us.

Hope you all have a great weekend.  

Congratulations to Sharon!   

Thursday, December 13, 2012

What did I do on 12/12/12

We celebrated my 12/12/12 birthday skiing!
We had a blast, I am so blessed with so may wonderful friends and family who wished me a special day. That includes blog friends too!

Thank You! 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Happy Birthday

 I received the sweetest card from a dear friend, with TWELVE (plus one, she said it was a bakers dozen) gifts...that equaled 12 inside. For example, 1 dozen eggs, a 12 pack of colored pencils, a pack of 12 dish clothes, a 12 pack of rootbeer...you get the idea! My entire kitchen counter was full. 
I loved the card too...
No ordinary day!
No ordinary you!
I can think of at least a "dozen" reasons your'e my friend!

She said her boys ( 12 and 10) had a blast going to the store to help find the 12 things. 
Thank You Lori!

I am wishing all of you a great 12/12/12 day!
Once in a Lifetime date!

Happy Birthday to Amy of While Wearing Heels    ... I just found out her birthday is today too. How fun is that.

Have a great day!  
P.S. My mom made the cake. :)  

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Mini Cinnamon Roll Cookies

Mini Cinnamon Roll Cookies
 1 cup butter, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon honey divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all - purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

In a large bowl, cream butter and 1 1/4 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolks, 1 tablespoon honey and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and cream of tartar, gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well.
Shape a heaping tablespoonful of the dough into a 6 inch log. In a shallow bowl, combine the cinnamon and remaining sugar. Loosely coil log into a spiral shape, place on a greased baking sheet. Repeat, placing cookies 1 in. apart. Sprinkle with remaining cinnamon-sugar.
Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until set.
Cool and enjoy!

I did not do the next step...
In a small bowl melt 8 ounces of white baking chocolate with the remaining honey, stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies. Let stand till set. Store in an airtight container. 
Merry Christmas! 
Recipe by - Mary Gauntt    

Monday, December 10, 2012

Happy December Giveaway!

Happy December Giveaway!
Dear Readers,
My birthday is 12/12/12!
Here in Wisconsin, Aaron Rodgers the Green Bay Packer Quarterback will get to share the day with me. Wisconsin has declared 12/12/12 Aaron Rodgers day.

Now through Friday, leave a comment and get your name in for a Studio206 Giveaway!
You will receive a pack of fun photo cards, just in time for Christmas.


My boys will pick a winner out of a hat on Friday December 14th. We will make an assortment of cards up and mail them out to you.
Thank you for your support reading The River and Studio206!

Merry Christmas!     

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Mabel Tainter Center of The Arts

On the Road Friday
Today we head to Mabel Tainter Center of the Arts
Menomonie, Wisconsin

 Called "The most significant building in western Wisconsin from an historical standpoint," by former Executive Director Gerald Schuster, The Mabel Tainter is listed on the National register of Historic Places, is a charter member of the League of Historic American Theaters and is designated as a Wisconsin Historic Marker Site. The Theater Historical Society of America views The Mabel Tainter as one of the top ten historic theaters in the U.S.
 Filling the spiritual, musical, social, intellectual and aesthetic hunger of the human spirit, The Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts is a memorial to Mabel S. Tainter.
 A lover of the arts, Mabel died in 1886 at age nineteen, in the beauty and promise of youth.
 Dedicated on July 3, 1890 by her parents, Andrew and Bertha Tainter, the memorial is of permanent value and utility to west central Wisconsin.

That is our tour of the Mabel Tainter. I would love to see it decorated for Christmas.
Come back next Friday, for a tour of another beautiful historic place in Wisconsin.
Thank you for coming along. 
Have fun exploring your own towns and cities. Be sure to drop me a message of a great place to visit. We are always excited to explore a new place.