About The River

Friday, July 1, 2022

This and That


Hello Friends,

Happy July and Happy Birthday to America!

Here is a little bit of This and That from me.

The above photo is The Little Garden That Could one week ago. We have our paths of straw freshly laid.  The garden will be in full bloom very soon. We are lacking rain in my neck of the woods, we have the sprinkler going in the above photo.

 We did receive rain a few days later.. along with hail. Thankfully we did not receive much damage. A few broken blooms and leaves.

Keeping the Flower Shack full of flowers.

Our sweet peas have just started to bloom.


We went strawberry picking, we froze some, we made jam and we saved a big bowl for fresh eating. Wisconsin strawberries are sweet and juicy.


Strawberry Jam

"Kindness begins where necessity leaves off. If your job is to provide supper, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich made with store - bought components has necessity covered." 

Amor Towles

 We have enjoyed several evening kayaking adventures. The above photo was taken by our friend Bonita during the first sunset of summer.



Before I go.. the following link is for the Rhubarb Ginger Coffee Cake I mentioned in a past blog post. The new recipe was given a thumbs up.

Rhubarb Ginger Coffee Cake  

Friday, June 24, 2022

On the Road Friday ~ A Canoe Trip for Two


Hello Friends,

Thank you for joining me today for an,  On the Road Friday. My sister and husband won a trip for two through the Lower Chippewa River State Natural Area. They are in a middle of a house build and would not be able to use the prize. My sister gave it to us and we enjoyed a lovely 14 mile canoe down the Red Cedar River during the morning of June 5th.


We enjoyed a shore lunch.

Beautiful scenery, bird song and Wisconsin green.

We saw a doe with triplets, this was the first time in my life that I saw a doe with triplets. Mama deer was a good mom to those three little ones. As we canoed passed she had them hide.

We saw eagles, herons, swallows, kingfisher and orioles. 

 The Mole never heard a word he was saying. Absorbed in the new life he was entering upon, intoxicated with the sparkle, the ripple, the scents and the sounds and the sunlight, he trailed a paw in the water and dreamed long waking dreams. Mole said " You must think me very rude; but all this is so new to me. So -this - is - a River!" "The River, " corrected the Rat. "And you really live by the river? What a jolly life!" "By it and with it and on it and in it," said the Rat.

The Wind in the Willows
By Kenneth Grahame
We explored the confluence of the Red Cedar River and the Chippewa River.
the junction of two rivers, especially rivers of approximately equal width.

 We enjoyed our Canoe Trip for Two.
Thank you for coming along with me today, On the Road Friday!

Friday, June 17, 2022

On the Road Friday ~ Patriotic Rice Lake ~ Freedom Walk


Hello Friends,

Welcome to On the Road Friday. Today we are going to take a trip to a small city that is just about 5 miles from my little village of Cameron. 

The Main Street Association of Rice Lake, Wisconsin will be helping to recognize our service members on Veterans Lakeshore Drive with Honorary banners.

Patriotic ~ Rice Lake ~ Freedom Walk

Banners will be displayed from:

Memorial Day to Patriots Day.

Banners will then be removed, cleaned and presented to the service member or their family/friends on Veterans' Day 2022.

Each year we will feature new service members.

My husband and I attended the Memorial Day service in Rice Lake. After the service we walked along the Freedom Walk. We took time to look up at each banner. We read each story that was provided in the brochure and we said "Thank You!"

 A few quotes from the brochure..

"The true solider fights not because he hates what's in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him."

G.K. Chesterton

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13 

 God fearing patriot and soldier for life! "If we knew the end from the beginning, we would not question the direction in which God takes our lives."

At the start of the walk a banner reads the following..

To all Current Military and Veterans:

We honor you and your families for your service. You are loved and never alone or forgotten. We were there for each other as brothers then and we are there for each other as brothers now.

Anonymous Veteran

Thank you for coming along with me on the Patriotic Rice Lake ~ Freedom Walk.


Monday, June 13, 2022

Girls Who Build


I recently listened to a podcast, The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe. Mike Rowe interviews Katie Hughes who is the founder of Girls Build. It was a great podcast. Katie is a unique young women, who lost her father very early in her life, in fact when she was just a tiny heartbeat in her mom's womb.

Katie has an amazing story. She founded Girls Build. I recently read her book.

It is worth checking out. I enjoyed reading the interviews in the book with the girls that have participated in Girls Build. 

Here are a few of the quotes from the girls.. the quotes make me smile.. I think they will make you smile too.

"I build because I like the feeling of accomplishing something. It makes me feel proud when I can say, 'I made that.'"

"Be okay with messing up.. The worst mistake you can make is giving up." 

"Sometimes (building) can be hard and frustrating, but in the end you get to make something you can be really proud of."

"If you want to learn something new, saying you can't do it is not going to get you anywhere."

And one more that made me chuckle.

  Who do you look up to?

I look up to my mom because she is very independent and strong and also has a plan for anything that goes wrong.


Wednesday, June 8, 2022

It is too cold to go Swimming, but it is time for the Hodgepodge!


My son is swimming in cranberries during the 2021 Cranberry Harvest.


Hello Friends, it is Wednesday and that means it is time for the Hodgepodge.

Joyce asks the questions.

We answer the questions.

Click here to join the fun! 


 1. "A daughter's a daughter all her life, but a son's a son til he takes a wife." What say you? Elaborate.

I find this to be true. And as it should be.

"For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." Genesis 2:24.

 2. Something you've seen recently that was 'cuter than a June bug'? 

We recently went on a 14 mile canoe trip. Along the way we saw a doe with triplets. The fawns were so cute and obeyed mother as they crouched down to blend in with the background.

 3. 'You can't buy happiness, but you can buy ice cream and that's pretty much the same thing.' Agree or disagree? Last time you had a serving of happiness ice cream?  Dish-cone-milkshake-sundae...which one do you choose? 

Yum, ice cream! We enjoyed an ice cream cone after an afternoon of fishing with our youngest. All three of us enjoyed a waffle cone with our favorite ice cream flavor.

 4. What is one way/area in which you're currently 'swimming against the tide'? 

I am starting a new project, one that I wanted to do long ago. I am feeling a wee bit overwhelmed, perhaps drowning. Thankfully I had a friend come over last week and start to give me some direction on how to get started.

 5. Three things you're looking forward to this summer?

 ♥ my garden

 ♥ time with my family

 ♥ fun in the sun

 6. Insert your own random thought here. 

 The children worked long and hard on their little cardboard shack. It was to be a special spot - a clubhouse, where they could meet together, play, and have fun. Since a clubhouse has to have rules, they came up with three:

Nobody act big.

Nobody act small.

Everybody act medium.

Charles R. Swindoll

Friday, June 3, 2022

My article for the June Issue of the Cameron Chronicle.


Hello Friends,

I am making a rhubarb ginger coffee cake today. I will share the recipe with you if it receives high remarks from my guests. 

I also have been busy planting the garden. We had some strange weather to endure, but plants are getting in the ground, in containers and starting to grow.

With that, I would like to share my June article for the June Issue  of the Cameron Chronicle .. "The Little Paper With Personality."




A Few Gardening Jobs for the Month of June

By Carla TePaske of Cameron WI ~ The Little Garden That Could

Once Spring Bulbs are over, rather than cutting down the foliage, leave to die and break down naturally. Doing this and adding liquid fertilizer around the clumps will encourage strong growth next spring.

It is still a good idea to dead head any faded flowers to prevent plants wasting energy creating seed heads.

* Continue to hoe soil to keep down weeds.

* Support your tall growing perennials.

* Start a water and feed schedule for your plants in containers.

And do not forget you can make your own fertilizer.

Did you know you can feed your plants with your own plants!

Using your own garden weeds and grass, you can make homemade fertilizer tea.

Making Fertilizer Tea

  1. Next time you are weeding the garden, throw chopped weeds into a bucket or trash can, chopping them up as you go.

  2. When the container is about half full, fill it with water. Rainwater is the best (also free!).

  3. Screen the top to keep mosquitoes out. You can use a piece of screening or row cover.

  4. Stir daily for 3 days to 2 weeks. Or, pour it from one bucket into another to mix things up and keep it aerated. 

  5. Strain off the liquid to use as a fertilizer or foliar spray. After you strain off the liquid, return the solids to your compost pile. It can be diluted or used full strength on established plants. Since plant leaves tend to absorb more nutrients more quickly than roots, foliar feeding is an efficient way to fertilize versus a soil drench.

A weed is but an unloved flower.” Ella Wilcox

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Goodbye to May and it is the Hodgepodge!


Hello Friends,

Goodness, it is the last week of May and it is Wednesday. Time to do the Hodgepodge!

Click here to join the fun..

Joyce Asks the Questions 

We answer the questions.

 1. It's National Wine Day (May 25)...do you like wine? Red or white? Dry or sweet? Do you have a favorite? Have you ever been to California wine country? Or any other wine region? What's a dish you make that calls for wine? 

I do enjoy wine. 

I have not been to California wine country or any wine region. If you have been a long time reader of The River, you will remember my friend Marv. He traveled every autumn to New York. He had a favorite wine and enjoyed the wine region of New York.

2. What's something you've whined about lately? 

I cannot say that I have whined, but I am genuinely concerned with many things that are happening in our nation. The price of fuel has come into the conversation, not so much in a whine, but in great concern. My family is in the agriculture business and prices for fuel are a big concern.

 3. Last time you were 'wined and dined'? Tell us about it. 

 The company my husband works for continues to host a Company Christmas Party. December 2021, we enjoyed a night on the town at the party. We enjoyed a delicious dinner, lots of laughs and a Brandy Old Fashion or two.

4. Three cheers for_____________________.

 Atticus, who had a birthday May, 18th!

5. This will be the last Hodgepodge in the month of May. Somehow next Wednesday the calendar rolls into June. Before we go though, sum up your May in twelve words or less. 

Happy Mother's Day, Happy Birthday's and Happy Anniversary on the last day of May to my best friend, Jeremy. 

We will always be in full bloom... together. 

 6. Insert your own random thought here. 

 Our Flag does not fly because the wind moves it, it flies with the last breath of every soldier who died defending it.

Monday, May 23, 2022

A Joyful Heart


A joyful heart is good medicine.

Proverbs 17:22

The ability to get a laugh out of everyday situations is a safety valve. It rids us of tensions and worries that could otherwise damage our health. 

What is it that brings healing to the emotions, healing to the soul? 

A joyful heart!


I am so thankful for the friends in my life, who make me laugh! Currently there is so much going on that is totally out of control. As a family, we take one day at a time and continue on doing our best.. with the help of a joyful heart.. we have to keep laughing.




Friday, May 20, 2022

That Kind of Day


Hello Friends,

I have been chewing on a few things as of late.. our son's deployment, a  personal change for me and current events. I read the following from Charles Swindoll. It helped me and I decided to share it, just in case his words can help you as well.

Thoughts are the thermostat that regulates what we accomplish in life. My body responds and reacts to the input from my mind. If I feed my mind upon doubt, disbelief, and discouragement, that is precisely the kind of day my body will experience. If I adjust my thermostat forward to thoughts filled with vision, vitality, and victory, I can count on that kind of day. 

You and I become what we think.





Monday, May 16, 2022

Family - Size Nacho Board


Hello Friends,

During the Christmas season our family enjoyed several Charcuterie boards. I was looking for some fun new ideas to create boards and I came across this cookbook.. 

   Big Boards for Families


Through stunning recipes and hosting tips from Sandy Coughlin, founder of the recipe and hospitality blog, Reluctant Entertainer, Big Boards for Families shows you how to artfully craft and serve food boards to your close friends and family. Piece together these bountiful spreads with a variety of ingredients and options that allow you and your guests to customize every dish.

Whether it’s for a morning brunch or movie-night get-together, you and your family will find over 50 splendid food boards to create and enjoy together, including:

  • Tea Party Brunch Board
  • Sweet and Savory Trail Mix Board
  • Perfect Party Crostini Board
  • Summer Burger Board
  • Pistachio Lemon Salmon Board
  • Festive Taco Dinner Board
  • Cake Bites Dessert Board

Big Boards for Families shows you how to casually host in style with minimum effort and maximum impact, allowing you to focus on spending time together, rather than being stuck in the kitchen. Everyone will feel comfortable digging in and helping themselves to their own personalized portion.

These plentiful charcuterie boards will impress your guests and delight your family, even those picky eaters! Choose the right spread for your family from a selection of food boards for dinner, lunch, after-school snacks, breakfast, or brunch. They’re also perfect for special occasions and game days too.

Invite friends, neighbors, and family over to your home and discover a new way of bringing those dearest to you around the table with Big Boards for Families


I created the Family - Size Nacho Board

YUM.. it was so good and really easy to prepare.  


Do you enjoy creating Charcuterie Boards? Do you have a favorite themed board? 

Or have you enjoyed eating from a Charcuterie Board? 

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

My Article for the May issue of the Cameron Chronicle


Hello Friends,

Today I am sharing the article I wrote for the May issue of the Cameron Chronicle ~ "The Little Paper With Personality."

I share about my garden florist business in the article as well. Spring is here, I am so happy to be back out in the garden and creating bouquets. 

Have a lovely week my friends.





April Showers Bring May Flowers

By Carla TePaske of Cameron WI ~ The Little Garden That Could

May brings the opening of the Flower Shack. Located at 206 Arlington Avenue, Cameron, Wisconsin you will find a self serve seasonal flower shop. Look for the sign on Main Street of Cameron and you will know that the Flower Shack is open.

If you need a bouquet delivered, or would like to subscribe to our seasonal flower subscription service, check out our website, www.littlegardenthatcould.com

Here are a few of the flowers you will find at the Flower Shack in the coming months: daffodils, tulips, lily of the valley, iris, peony, dahlias, zinnia and sunflowers.

If you happen to see me working out in the garden, I would be happy to give you a garden tour.

Buying Fresh Cut Flowers makes dreams come true.. so a very special Thank You!

Gardening Tips for May

May is the busiest time in the garden but do not panic, take things one step at a time and you will get it all done.

* Start to direct sow hardy annuals.

* Harden off seedlings that have been started indoors. Place them outside during the day, but bring them in again late afternoon, and do this for about a week or so. This way they will get used to the cooler conditions before being planted outside.

* Keep on top of weeds.

Friday, May 6, 2022

An April Birthday Bash


We enjoyed celebrating our oldest son's birthday in April. We enjoyed grilled chicken, pasta salad, fruit salad and homemade Honey Butter Rolls.

For dessert I made Highlander Grogg Filled Cupcakes. These cupcakes are so good! They made for the perfect way to celebrate a special birthday!

We went for a hike in the woods after dinner ~ before cake and gifts. 

"You may run, walk, stumble, drive or fly, but let us never lose sight of the reason for the journey, or miss a chance to see a rainbow on the way."
Gloria Gaither

Monday, May 2, 2022

Spring Thaw and High Water


Hello Friends, 

Over the Easter weekend my husband and I stopped in to hike to Slough Gundy on the Flambeau River. During the spring thaw you witness the power of river water.

Slough Gundy is also called Little Falls, it is a fun spot to explore during all the seasons. I was lucky to have grown up only 20 miles away from the area. I was able to enjoy all the seasons. It is a fun area to picnic, fish or view the rugged whitewater of the South Fork of the Flambeau River.



It has been a cold spring. I was fascinated with the ice forming from the high water making icicles.


"Isn't it splendid to think of all the things there are to find out about? It just makes me feel glad to be alive ~ it's such an interesting world. It wouldn't be half so interesting if we know all about everything, would it? There'd be no scope for the imagination then, would there?"

Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables


Wednesday, April 27, 2022

It is the Hodgepodge and we are featuring the letter V



Hi Everyone! This is me, on a recent spring hike. It is still cold here in Northwest Wisconsin. Our temperatures have been below normal. Today on the Hodgepodge, I am going to share some about me featuring the letter V. 

Joyce asks the questions.

 We answer the questions.

Click here to join the fun! 

1. What does the word values mean to you personally? Values are a standard that I live by and find important. Where did your values come from? My parents taught me my values. What are some of the values that have guided you throughout your life? Honesty, Respect and Kindness.

2. Your favorite vanilla flavored something? Soft Serve Ice Cream!

3. What's something you've seen/done recently that you found to be very difficult, very confusing, very helpful, very interesting, or very special. Elaborate. 

Very Difficult

We recently found out that our National Guard Son will be deployed. I will be honest, I always knew he would be deployed. Yet, when I received the news, it gave me a shiver. As we prepare as a family for his deployment, I am finding moments that are very difficult.  

 4. Something you own and love that is violet in color? 

 Lilacs ~ they are just budding, it will be awhile before they bloom.

 5. Do you have vacation plans on the calendar this summer? Tell us more. 

We do not at this time, but have tossed a few ideas around. All our ideas are adventures that are in our state of Wisconsin.

 6. Insert your own random thought here.  

 Me and my Mother

We have hosted a Mother's Day Dinner for my mom for over 20 years. It is tradition for my husband to grill a turkey and we make fun side dishes each year. I am starting to plan the menu and thinking of ways to make the day special. Each year we change it up a little to create new memories.

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Soaking in Spring

 Soaking in Spring

My husband and I  recently went for a spring hike in the Blue Hills of Rusk County.

It was a cool, crisp, windy spring day.

Enjoy the photos that my husband took of some of the beauty we enjoyed.

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods. There a rapture on the lonely shore. There is society where none intrudes. By the deep sea, a music in its roar: I love not man the less, but nature more.

George Gordon Byron