About The River

Friday, July 28, 2023

On The Road Friday ~ Devil's Lake, Wisconsin


Hello Friends,

This is not a tall tale.. nope it is a true adventure of our time on Devil's Lake.

We will start from the beginning, our friend Bonita lives in Florida most of the year. She use to live in Wisconsin all year around, but her son lives in Florida, so she moved to Florida to be closer to family. 

Each summer she comes back to Wisconsin. Each summer we have a kayaking adventure. Last year we kayaked the evening of the Summer Solstice and stayed out as late as we could during the longest day of the year.

We planned this years adventure for July 16th. Looking at the weather forecast, it said sunshine and a bit breezy. Oh my, a perfect day to be on the water. 

As we headed out on to the water, my husband noticed a dark cloud. Could this cloud be coming our way? No, it looks to be blowing in the other direction. Besides, the weather forecast says .. sunshine and a breeze. 

Well the breeze turned into a high wind, the cloud turned into thunder and we paddled to safety on the shoreline. We huddled under some brush. Our dear friend Bonita is deathly scared of snakes. Snakes were all  she could think about while huddled under the brush. Do you see any snakes? Then we started to ask, do you see poison ivy or poison oak? It thundered, the wind blew and then it was all over. And as we started to dry off the kayak seats we noticed the No Trespassing Sign on the other side of the brush. Oh Bother!!

We got back into our kayaks and paddled on to our destination to the Big Devil's Lake. We were in between Little Devil's Lake and Big Devil's Lake,  in the channel when the breeze decided to become wind and the dark could became thunder. And one does not look for No Trespassing signs when paddling to safety.

We had a great explore on Big Devil's Lake and paddled back to Bonita's  .. to no power. 

To end our evening we went to the Campground Club House and enjoyed a bowl of ice cream.. with every one else because we all  had the same idea.. with no power .. we don't want the ice cream to melt in the ice cooler. 

Hee Hee!

And that is our adventure with our friend Bonita. It is not our first adventure with her. No, we ended up in another storm years past. We were heading home from spending the day with her. We got caught in a terrible storm we had to unload our canoe at a complete strangers because the wind was so bad to travel with it. Thankfully the stranger was very kind and let us leave the canoe to pick up the next day.

No tall tale.. just another adventure with our friend Bonita.. I wonder what next summer will bring?



Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Goodbye July ~ Hello Hodgepodge!


Enjoying grilled pizza and a summer salad sitting out on the deck.

Hello Everyone, 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. July 25th is National Merry-Go-Round Day. Do you call it a merry-go-round or a carousel? I call it a Merry - Go Round. When was the last time you rode one? I think it was at the San Diego Zoo? Back in 2011!!  Did you enjoy that? Yes, it was fun!  Metaphorically speaking, what's something in your life right now that feels like a merry go round? Watering the garden. We have been so dry here, in fact we are in a drought here in Wisconsin. I finish watering the garden, all my pots and baskets and do it all over again and again and again.

 2. What word do you have a hard time pronouncing? Apocalypse What word do you have a hard time spelling? Oh dear, spelling is not one of my strengths, so I will have to say many!  What's your favorite word in another language? Spasiba ... Thank You in Russian. When I went on a missions trip to Ukraine in 2006, Spasiba was one word I had down and everyone did understand when I said it. Ha!

3. What's a phrase or cliche you use pretty often and find to be true?

Keep Calm and Carry On

4. When it comes to grocery shopping what is your most dreaded chore-menu planning, the actual shopping and paying, or the unloading/putting away? I enjoy grocery shopping. In fact when a new grocery store opened in Eau Claire, I took my friend Angie on an outing to it. Ha!  How often do you shop? We try to do a once a month BIG shop trip to the big city of Eau Claire. But every two weeks or so we will run in to our local grocery store. Do you use any of the pick up and/or delivery services? We do use Sam's Club delivery services.

5. Something you need or want to do before July comes to a close? 

Write and post a Hodgepodge... I am not always able to play along, but I try to once a month. This was the last week for me to join in.. I did it!

 6. Insert your own random thought here. 

My blog friend Ginny shared this on her blog post... I laughed... we all need a laugh... so I am going to share it here..

Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.

Erma Bombeck   

Monday, July 17, 2023

When Dry Spells Become Drought


Hello Friends,

The above photo is from a garden we toured. I love the creativity using the cattle water tank to create a fairy garden.

Speaking of creativity, my husband and I got creative in adding some rain collection areas around our garden. We have two totes that the covers are broken. Instead of tossing the totes we set them up under other areas of water run off. We have a rain barrel water collecting system, it works wonderful. But, we need more water. We added the totes to collect water by our greenhouse and another area of our house. We do a happy dance when we receive just a wee bit of rain because every drop counts as we collect the water. In fact we received .03 " of rain the other night. We did not think the gauge would even record it was so little. But that little amount filled the totes and re filled the rain barrels 25%... like I said we will take every drop we can get.

Our county is in a severe drought.  This is the second major dry year we have endured. Sadly, this summer of 2023 is getting really dry and we are starting to notice all the stress on the plants.  With the drought in mind, I decided to write my July article for the Cameron Chronicle about how to survive a drought and starting to think about growing drought tolerant plants.


When Dry Spells Become Drought

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

Long periods of hot weather, without rainfall, remind us that water is a precious commodity. There are many things that gardeners can do to prepare for periods of drought, such as conserving water, mulching beds and borders, and choosing drought tolerant plants.

We will break down the three things that we can do to prepare for dry spells in the garden. Starting with conserving rain water, install a rain barrel kit. You can find these at Menards, Amazon, Home Depot and local hardware stores. You can also find Do It Yourself Kits online and on You Tube.

Mulching is an easy way to prepare for dry spells. Mulch is a thick layer of material placed over the soil and around the plants. Mulch helps suppress weeds and lock moisture into the soil while acting as a physical barrier to drying winds and direct sun.

There is a wide variety of mulches to use. Natural mulches include leaves, bark, and grass clippings. You can also purchase a mulch such as landscaping fabric, carpet squares or rubber mulch made from recycled tires.

Preparing for dry spells in the garden also means having plants that will cope well during the dry spell. One solution is to start planting more drought tolerant plants in our gardens. Drought tolerant plants usually native to dry regions such as the Mediterranean, have evolved to thrive in dry soils with little rainfall. When visiting your local Garden Center ask about drought tolerant plants.

Until next time, happy gardening!

Monday, July 10, 2023

2023 Commencement Ceremony



 You dared to dream! And today is the day those dreams become your reality.




May 18th, 2023

Our son Atticus graduated from Chippewa Valley Technical College with Scholastic Honors. Atticus graduated with a degree as an Automotive Technician.


The ceremony took place at UWEC Zorn Arena.



Hold tight to the dreams you have today and walk with God in their direction.


CVTC President Sunem Beaton Garcia shared  powerful opening remarks. She is a first generation Cuban American. She gave a powerful Pro American speech. She shared how the college will continue to support the graduates. She knows that the graduates will commit to their profession prepared with new skills and a lot of determination. It is the college's primary goal to help these graduates succeed.

We cannot wait to see all you accomplish.

High Fives Atticus!!!

We are so proud of you!! 

And we cannot wait to see all you accomplish.


Friday, July 7, 2023

On The Road Friday ~ Texas to Wisconsin



I am a wee bit behind in sharing some of the highlights of 2023 with you all. Here we go with a little catch up. Mid-May my Uncle Paul and Aunt Sally came for a Wisconsin visit. I took a photo of the TEXAS license plate of their truck parked in our driveway.


All the way from, The Lone Star State. My Uncle Paul and Aunt Sally did a true Wisconsin Family Tour, starting in Southern Wisconsin, heading way North to Eagle River, Wisconsin and then heading West to Northwest Wisconsin. They visited and stayed with family and friends during their month long trip. 

It was a true blessing to catch up, right where we left off in 2018, our last in person visit.

 Our family is wearing short sleeves and my Texas family is wearing long sleeves, in fact my Aunt Sally had a turtleneck on prior to heading out to take some family photos. 

It makes me laugh how climate can change us.. how we can get cold fast after living in a hot climate and us Wisconsin folks can get hot fast when visiting a hot climate.


 We had a lovely three day and two night visit. And when they left to head South for Texas they said, "it is your turn to visit us."




How about you, have you had any traveling friends or family visit you this summer season? 

Monday, July 3, 2023

Flag Etiquette


Happy Birthday America

Hello Friends, today I am going to share flag etiquette.

♥ Stand and face the American Flag

 ♥ Refrain from talking

 ♥ Men and boys shall remove their caps

 ♥ Hold your right hand over your heart from the first to the last note of the National Anthem, Taps, and for the first flag in a parade

Thank you for being a patriotic American.

 The countdown is on... Sam and the 157th will be on Wisconsin soil in August.

Thank you for the continued prayers and support.