About The River

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

It is a Crock pot Hodgepodge!


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. What kind of thinker are you-doer concrete thinking) analyst (analytical and abstract thinking), orator (logical thinking) inventor (imaginative thinking) or original thinker (creative)? What makes you say so? You can try this little quiz (link here) to help with your answer. 

I did not take the quiz. I read the outline of all the thinkers. And I am..

The Original Thinker: Creative Thinking

You have a rare and valuable ability to think creatively.

Creative thinking is the ability to look at problems and situations from a different perspective and find unusual and often surprising solutions.

Creative thinking is a rare skill and is needed in all types of work.

 I usually can find solutions for problems and many times they are outside the box.

2. Do you own a crock pot, air fryer, and/or instapot? Do you leave said small appliance sitting out? How often do you use it/them? Favorite thing to make in one of these? 

I do own a crock pot. No, I do not leave our crock pot sitting out.

I use my crock pot several times in a month. 

I made this recipe last week, it was delicious.

Slow Cooker Beef Roast with Sweet and Salty Sauce 

3. What's something you hold a strong opinion on that matters not at all in the grand scheme of things? 

Pick up the dog poop!

I just got home from my walk with Ernie, I hold a strong opinion on dog owners leaving poop on the sidewalk, in other folks lawns and even on the street. 

 4. Describe the view from your window. 
The little snow we received last week is melting, birds are visiting the bird feeder and patches of grass are showing.
 5. Do you have a favorite brand? Explain.
L.L. Bean ...  all my purchases have held up very well though out the years. When we do have any issues, customer service has been fantastic. 
 6. Insert your own random thought here.  

Tomorrow always has the potential to out shine today!

Monday, February 19, 2024

February Article for the Cameron Chronicle ~ Sweet Peas

 Hello Friends, today I am sharing the article I wrote for our local paper, Cameron Chronicle.. "The Little Paper with Personality."

Sweet Peas

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

Sweet peas are the perfect flower if you are looking to add fragrance and romance to your garden.

Sweet peas have a hard seed coat. To aid germination you may find it helpful to leave the seeds in a small saucer of water for 24 hours before sowing.

Sweet peas do not like to have their roots messed with. An easy way to sow sweet peas early in the house is to use a rootrainer or a toilet paper roll. They are ideal as they provide a deep, narrow area for the root to run. If you choose to use the toilet paper roll, you can plant it right into the ground when you are ready to plant out your sweet peas.

When there are three or four pairs of leaves, pinch out the leaders – just squeeze off the growing tip between your finger and thumb. This promotes vigorous side shoot formation, with the energy of the plant directed toward growing out, not up.
Check your plants regularly and water them lightly if the surface begins to look dry. About a month from germination, check the bottom of the pot for white roots. 
When potting out make sure you plant your sweet peas alongside a vertical support such as a tee-pee, an arch or a tunnel. Plant 2 plants to each rod of a vertical support.

As the young sweet pea plants begin to grow, tie them into the frame – don’t leave them to flop around. They’ll grow more quickly and make stronger plants tied in regularly.

Feed and water your sweet peas. They are hungry plants and do not like to dry out.

You can let your flowers go to seed and collect the seed pods in the Autumn. Let the seeds dry out for a few months and store in a labeled envelope. The seeds that you collected may vary slightly from the parent, especially if you grew a mix of varieties. You will have created your very own unique sweet pea.

Until next time, happy gardening!

Monday, February 12, 2024

When it is Below Zero


Our 2024 Northwest Wisconsin Winter has been strange.

No snow.

Mild Temps and when I say mild, 50 degrees.

Yet, we had one week of BELOW ZERO weather. And what does one do when you have negative temperatures?

You make luminaries and sun-catchers.



Fill your bucket with water, toss in your decorations.

 I used  pine boughs, pinecone, cranberries and oranges.

We taped another container down into the water to have it make our area for the candle to sit after freezing.


The sun-catchers are made by filling a pie tin with water. Place your string in the water, I placed an orange slice to hold my string in place to freeze. Again I used pine boughs, pinecone, cranberries and oranges to decorate my sun-catchers.


Below are photos of the finished luminaries and sun-catchers. 


 And at night...



 And then the warm temperatures arrived...






Joy is not in things, it is in us.

Benjamin Franklin


Wednesday, February 7, 2024

January Update ~ The Little Copper Dog


Hello Friends,

My sister gifted us a 2024 calendar ~ The Truth About Dog People ~ 

Writer and Illustrator ~ Jo Renfro

As I change the calendar page each month, I will share the illustration and  give an update on Ernie our rescue dog.



I shared the story about adopting Ernie here.

January Update

 ♥ Ernie has lived with us for 3 months.

♥ His paperwork from Texas stated that his birthday was December 10th, 2022 .. his paperwork from Wisconsin stated that his birthday is February 10th, 2023. He is a year old. He moved in with us in late October. Adopting an older dog, who was not neutered at the time, (he is now) a rescue and not knowing what challenges may all come with that, we are happy to report Ernie is doing very well.

♥ Ernie does not look like he did in the photo above. He has gained weight and the color of his fur has darkened.   




  ♥ He loves to play tug. 

♥ He loves to go for walks.

 ♥ He loves to cuddle.

We are working on.. knowing when to stop barking. He is a great watchdog, but once I have let him know it is alright these folks are our friends, he still is not sure and will give his two cents of woofs a few more minutes.

Jumping up.. we are still working on this, he gets very excited when we come home, when he is greeted by friends and when he plays.


Ernie as been a very good distraction for me. And that is part of why I wanted to take on the challenge of bringing Ernie home. No one knows what a rescue has been through and how they will act. We have been blessed, Ernie wants to learn and is eager to please. And for me with society feeling rather shaky right now. The media keeping up the frenzy of FEAR. We took on the challenge of Ernie, keeping me grounded in reality. And enjoying life that comes with training up a little copper dog.


Monday, February 5, 2024

Writing for the Cameron Chronicle in 2024


Hello Friends, 

I will be writing garden articles  for our local village newspaper again in 2024. 

Cameron Chronicle "The Little Paper with Personality."

I am sharing the article I wrote for the January 2024 issue.



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

Happy New Year to you all. As we jump into a new gardening year I plan to pick certain plants and flowers to discuss and give tips for success.

Roses are a favorite of mine, but lately I have been having pest and black spot problems. We will start talking pests. Rose aphids are the pest that I have been having the most trouble with. We garden organically. I will be sharing organic ways of managing pests. It may sound gross, but it works, use finger and thumb to squash aphid colonies on your plants. Encourage aphid predators in your garden, ladybugs, wasps and earwigs all like to eat aphids.

Black spot is the next problem I have with our roses. It is caused by a fungus, Diplocarpon rosae, which infects the leaves and greatly reduces plant vigor.

Underplanting with salvia has been proven to help the health of roses.

The sulphur in the salvia’s scent profile means that when they warm up, they release a natural fungicide. This helps keep the roses strong, healthy, mildew and black spot free.

Underplanting with salvias is a great organic gardening method, which allows you to forgo pesticides and chemicals. If you spot the signs of black spot, clear anyway any dead leaves which might work as a natural host for harmful spores.

I planted a salvia under one of my roses in late summer. I am in hopes it helps with black spot and other pests. I will keep you updated.

Until next time, happy gardening!

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Hello February 2024


Leap Year by Annette Wynne
Little month of February,
You are small, but worthy—very!
Will you grow up like the others,
Like your sister months and brothers?
Every four years with a bound
With a leap up from the ground,
Trying to grow tall as they—
All you stretch is one small day!
Even then you're not so tall
But just the shortest month of all.