Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Crazy Weather

It rained just like summertime...  In February.  I think it may have thundered, Chance hid.

When it rains on heavy snowpack it makes fog.

I call it snow fog but that may not be the correct term.

Two car lengths

You could see about two car lengths. 

Fog in Osage

I wouldn’t want to be walking.

Foggy Driveway

The driveway is slushy.

Summer time rain in Feb

The yard is a lake. When it freezes our yard will be a skating rink.   Late in the afternoon it rained really hard.  The path to the sauna is free of snow!

I heard that Detroit Lakes had snow thunder and hail.  It was 49 F or 9 C  eh!

We have April weather in February. 


There is still snow at the snowstick…but who knows for how much longer.

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Monday, February 20, 2017

Adam: Braces and Nationals

Adam got rid of his braces.  He now wears a retainer, he said his teeth were sore for a few days but they are getting better now.  I told him that when his Mother had a retainer, she would take it out during meal time and wrap it in a napkin and then throw it away.  We would have to dig through the garbage for it…she did that at one time at school too where there is no going back to find it.

School is “fine”…he is a young man of many words. 


His Vex Robotic’s Team was at a Competition that if they placed well they would have advanced to the World Championship…they are going to National Championships instead.  I asked him what he learned, he said “Alot”  I asked him if he had a good time “Yes.”  He is looking forawrd to going to Nationals in April.

I asked him if he had a girlfriend for everyday of the week…he said “NO.”


There look at that perfect smile!

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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Car History

I like red.  I especially like red cars.  Red is a cheerful color.  Have you noticed how many different colors of red there are…Fire Truck Red, Orange Red, Deep Red, Raspberry Red…

The Cruze was not red because the red one sold really fast so I settled for black…years ago I had a red Dodge Charger…oh how I loved that car.  It was an 1982 I think.  Brand new.

A week ago Far Guy test drove a different car…and he was sold on the vehicle almost immediately, but it was a charcoal color.  The red car came into the dealership last Thursday.  On Friday I took it for a drive and three hours later we left the black Cruze and brought the new red car home.


Chance was not real sure about this whole new car thing.


We put his car blanket in the back seat and he took his first ride.

New Ride

Winterberry Red is the color.

It is the new Sunday car.  It doesn’t get as good of gas mileage (only 28 - 32mpg) as the Cruze that almost always got better than 38 mpg, we only filled with gas every two months for the Cruze now I suppose we will have to buy gas once a month.  We are not exactly big travelers.

All Wheel Drive should get us through the snow.  The heated steering wheel and seats will be appreciated on really cold Minnesota winter days.

Back up camera

How cool is a back up camera? Yes the yard is a lake…it was 50F here yesterday.

Maddie asked “Why did you choose red?”  Jennifer answered “ Duh…your Grandma loves red cars.”

Andrew asked How many brand new vehicles have you had over the years?

1973 Gremlin (White)

1978 Plymouth Horizon a special order with a special paint job (Black with yellow, orange and red trim on the bottom.)

1982 Dodge Charger (Red)

1986 Dodge Caravan (Silvery Light Blue)

1990 Geo Metro (Red)

1995 Nissan Pickup (Torquoise Green)

2017 Buick (Red)

The 2012 Cruze (Black) was not new it was either a rental or a program car.  It had 18,000 miles on it when we bought it and had 52,000 miles on it when we traded it in.

The 2005 Chevy Tracker (Red) was also a program car, it had some miles on it when we bought it, it is a 4 X 4 and is it our everday vehicle that now has 152,000 miles. It has some rust…Minnesota roads are very salty.

Other vehicles that were not new.  1959 Desoto Station Wagon (Willow Green), 1966 Mercury or Dodge Caliente (White with a black vinyl top), 1968 GMC Pickup (Baby Blue), A 1963 Ford Cortina (We called it our English Ford and it was light green), 1974 Gremlin (Torquoise Blue), 1973 Ford Pickup (Black), 1984 Nissan Stanza (Tan), 1984 Ford Bronco II (Blue and White)…I drove the Bronco for 20 plus years…I still miss that vehicle.

So much for Car History.  Far Guy says the best vehicle he ever had was the Nissan Stanza…he called it his office because he spent four hours a day in it commuting to and from work in Fargo.

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Saturday, February 18, 2017


I cleaned out part of a cupboard.  Found some old peanuts in the shell that tasted horrible they were so old.  Far Guy sat them on the bench outside.  The gray squirrels must think we will poison them but the brown/black squirrel is not afriad.

One by one they disappeared.

Nuts Feb 12

He would grab one and take off and be back about three minutes later, he must have taken them to his nest in the trees on the east side of the house.  He entertained us for quite some time.

It was 49F here yesterday, we are melting!   You can see the ground at the edge of the road and black spots in the fields. 

I am certain that winter is not over, this is probably just a lull before a big storm that will jerk us back to reality.

I happened across my Aunt Elenor’s obituariy and entered it at Find A Grave.  Luckily I maintain that grave.  The local Find A Grave gal has been taking the last six months year off so nothing is getting updated.  Really frustrating for me.  I can still add photos but obits are just sitting in her emails as are requests for tranfers…NUTS.

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Friday, February 17, 2017


The sunset colors were beautiful last night.  Our weather has turned warm for February.  It was about 36 F yesterday or  2C eh!  Today it may be 50 F or 10 C  eh!!!
Susnset at the snowstick
Sunset Feb 16 2017
The colors were beautiful behind the naked Oaks.

I have been working at “stuff” on my desk all week.  No noticeable progress has been made.   Ongoing was sure a good word for me this year.  In the midst of clearing out drawers and files I found three or four more large projects.  The most important one is all the family stories that my Father has shared with me.  I took notes on what ever piece of paper I had when he was in a talking mood…it all needs to be organized. At least most of the notes are in the same place now.  I would like to get it all put together and have him go over it and correct it where needed.  The other three projects are important only to me and will probably go on the back burner for a bit.  
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Thursday, February 16, 2017

My Friend Eric

I have a friend.  His name is Eric.  I see him every grocery shopping day.  He works until 4 o’clock.   He bags groceries, or sweeps the floors…he doesn’t like sweeping very much but he gets it done.  Sometimes he wears a bow tie to work, Eric is short, he has light brown hair, sparkly eyes and a big smile.

I always look to see which checkout he is working at.  We have a “thing”  I don’t like my bread in a bag, I like it seperate and put in the front of the cart…Eric knows this and has known this for years.  Often times he jokes with me and says “What would you do to me if I squished all your bread in one bag?”  He often answers my glowering look  himself with “Guess I don’t want to find out.”  Often he will stop the cashier in her tracks if she starts to put my bread in a bag.

I think he waits for us on grocery day, one day we were a little late and he was on his way out the door…he said “Ya know I only work until four.  You should come earlier.”

Sometimes he is on cart duty, retrieving the carts from their corrals. This week as I got out of the car in the parking lot at the grocery store Eric met me with a cart.   He said “I figured you would be needing this.”  I said “Thanks Eric you are a doll!”  he said “I know and I think you are pretty special too.” So I gave him a hug! 

Sometimes Eric goes to the East Coast on an Airplane to visit his family.  He usually tells me when he is going and when he will be back.  His parents used to live in Park Rapids but they were elderly and needed to move in with Eric’s sister.  Eric stayed behind, he has his own house and his job.  He takes his job very seriously.  I am sure that he is never late for work. I am not sure that his employers know how fortunate they are to have Eric working for them.


Eric has Down Syndrome…an extra 21st chromosome…one that makes him extra special.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Wistful Wednesday: Far Guy’s Birthday

Today is the day, 67 years ago Far Guy was born.  He was a “blue baby” now we know what that means.  It was the first sign  that he had Alpha One Antitrypsin Deficiency. Back then they didn’t know about such things and just called him a “blue baby.”

J G 1953 (2)

Far Guy and his sister in 1953

Don’t let the sweet smile fool you…he was a handful.  Typical boy into everything and had to try everything at least once or twice.  He often wishes that he had the Lionel train cars that were sacrificed for small explosions(Firecrackers) and those that were set on fire in the basement.

His Mom used to make him a birthday dinner, he always asked for shrimp, there was a french fryer in the basement  especially for french fries or shrimp. She would make him some kind of orange sherbet dessert…it was spread in a pan and put in the freezer until it was served…brownies with hard (boiled chocolate) frosting was another of her birthday specialties.

I asked him to do a photo shoot with Chance.

67 years old


Stop petting the dog

Stop petting the dog!

Chance and gene

All together say awwwww

Happy Birthday to our best friend!

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine Flowers

Valentines Day.
Wally World was ready for the masses.

As we entered the building there was a huge display of orchids, we walked around the table and enjoyed all the different colors.  I have never had an orchid in the house…Far Guy went as far as to read that they like three or four ice cubes a week…I had forgotten that.

It was like a flower gauntlet.

It started to smell like a Funeral Home…you know that heavy “rose” smell that goes along with death… they were all ready in bunches…every color you would expect for roses…and a few I had not seen in years…pale lavender, white tipped in pink…sunset colors… and the usual pink in many different shades, white, off white, yellow, orange and of course red.  I must have smiled as I bent down to inhale the smell, different roses smell different…and it must have been a recent shipment as there was not a bent neck to be found…a few had brown edges on their petals…but as a whole they looked good….it might have been a Wally World Miracle!  My husband said “I should buy you some roses!”  I replied “Nope a trip through that aisle was good enough for me.”   He smiled.

Then there were typical red and white bouquets with plastic Be Mine hearts on a stick and balloons.  On past the cakes and cookies with every kind of pink and white frosting with valentine greetings and sprinkles.  IMG_4541
I have enjoyed my roses outside for many years. 
I wish you blue skies and sunshine and someone or some critter (cat or dog) to spend the day with.
We will be staying home, avoiding the masses that go out for supper.  We will dine at home.  Steak and lobster that we will prepare together and something chocolate!

Happy Valentine Day!
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Monday, February 13, 2017

Swans and Ducks

There are a number of Swans and Ducks over on the Fishhook River.  It entertained Chance and I for quite some time.  Chance just watched out his window.  He didn’t growl he didn’t bark he just enjoyed the show…what a good boy he is!

The Trumpeter Swans are huge.



Young Swan

The young swans will slowly become snowy white.

Picking your butt in public

Just a reminder to never pick your butt in public! 

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

Shopping for cars

I am trying to keep it simple.  Just give me something that will travel in deep snow has heated leather seats and blue tooth and I am happy.  Rear view cameras where the lines show you exactly where you are going…accident avoidance with some kind of flashing lights…heated steering wheel… have you heard those commercials…it isn’t your Grandpa’s Buick anymore?  That is what my grandparents drove…a Buick or an Oldsmobile.

The salesman was nice, he is a young fellow so I am sure he could use the commission from the sale.  The appraiser was scared to death to drive our Sunday vehicle with Chance inside.  Chance didn’t even get up from his nest in the back seat.  Far Guy went along just to make sure that Chance wouldn’t mame the guy for life.

Those glossy phamplets they give you to study at home must cost a pretty penny. 

Far Guy is sold, he test drove it, I declined.  I also declined to made a decision until the perfect color red one shows up in a couple of weeks.  They had a grey one, it was a mess from the snow and rain.  We live on a gravel road.  We don’t have our own car wash.

Car Shopping If we waited a few more years our perfect car might be built…one that washes itself, drives itself while you read, never gets lost and stops at all garage sales.

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Saturday, February 11, 2017


This week whislt looking for something else I found some old World War II Ration Books.  I thought they were interesting and wondered what they were for.  I did a little research that made me thankful for food in the pantry and in the freezer.

When times are tough, Americans have proved that they can do without.

Book Number One was known as the “sugar book.”  Sugar was the first thing to be rationed in May of 1942.  You were allowed 12 ounces per week per person. ( 1 1/2 cups) Most cookie recipes call for more sugar than that.

In the sugar book were also coupons for coffee and one for one pair of shoes.

War Ration Book one inside 

In this book that Far Guy’s Dad saved were three coupons left all for coffee. Stamps 19-28 were for one pound of coffee a week, Number 17 was for one pair of shoes good from June 16 –Oct 31 1943.  The rest were sugar coupons.

There was a local tire board, if you needed a tire you had to go ask to purchase one.  Gasoline was rationed, you were allowed 3 or 4 gallons a week.  Car sales were stopped, then typewriters and bicycles…factories went into War Production.  The war effort needed typewriters because that was their way of communication.

In 1942 and 1943 things would get worse, many more items were rationed, coal and heating fuel, nylons, cooking oils, meat and all canned or bottled foods.  Babies were allowed milk products but they had to have a ration booklet. 

You had to apply for a ration booklet and it would be mailed to you.  The newspapers published times and date of which coupons were good and when.  You had to keep all the coupons in the booklet until paying for items…no lose coupons were allowed.  The Office of Price Administration had many rules.

Back of Ration Book

Inside Marvins Ration book

These stamps are from Ration Book Three.  These booklets were issued in September of 1943.  There were eight pages of stamps, four for meat and four for clothing.  The clothing stamps never went into effect but they could be used for shoes.  These were point stamps and they were decorated with Guns, Tanks, Aircraft Carriers and Planes.

You were encouraged to have a Victory Garden, do home canning and not to waste even one ounce of food.  There could be no lasting peace in a hungry world. 

“If you don’t need it don’t buy it.”  

You could take your waste kitchen fats and grease to a butcher shop and they would pay you 4 cents a pound.  It was recycled into explosives!   If you wanted toothpaste you had to turn in your old metal tube.  The National speed limit during the war years was 35 mph, it saved on gas and tires.  Every piece of scrap metal and scrap rubber was recycled. 

Rationing came about because asking people to use less didn’t work.  Hoarding and price gouging were avoided and every person got their fair share. 

The fair share was not much 48 points a month would get you two cans of pineapple or four cans of spinach.

Women that were home canners could apply for extra sugar.

I know that farmers fared better than most people, they could have larger gardens, and raise their own meat..and with some luck a goat or a milk cow and of course chickens for eggs.

Rationing ended in 1946.


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Friday, February 10, 2017

Snowstick Contest 2017

It is probably time to start the snowstick contest.

Leave a comment with your best guess.   The date and morning or afternoon please.

Here is the history;
2011  April 8
2012  March 13
2013  April 30
2014  April 10
2015  March 11
2016  March 8
2017  ???????  Your best guess

I am not certain what the prize will be most likely a bark carving of a house. I better get busy and carve a few!  You can be assured that it will be a one of a kind Bark Carving!

I will add the guesses to this post.  Guessing will end at 9 PM Sunday night February 12th.  For the shy people you know my email address or if you don’t know it …it is in my profile…click on the little yellow flower on the sidebar!
12 inches Feb 9th 2017
When the snow, ice and water is gone from the snowstick I will declare a winner.  It must be grassy ground!
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Date         AM or PM     Name
March 1                   Sam I Am
March 3    PM         MJM
March 5    PM         Karen 51
March 10                 Michele M
March 11  PM        Phyllis P
March 13  AM         Djan
March 14  PM         Mildred
March 15                diane
March 16                Terry and Linda
March 16  PM        Sandy B
March 16  PM        Linda
March 17                Mac n' Janet
March 17  PM        Marlys
March 18 PM         Wendy Danielson
March 19  PM        Karen
March 20  PM        Pippa
March 21  5:20 PM   Red
March 22  PM        Sonja
March 23 PM         Alvina
March 26  PM        LD
March 28 PM         Rita
March 29 PM         Kathy
March 29  PM        Linda Reeder
March 30               Cynthia
March 31  PM       Ann Z
April 1   PM         Dale K
April 2   PM         Bonnie
April 5   PM         linda M
April 6   PM           Anonymous
April 7    PM         J.T.
April 8   PM          Paula Kaye
April 10  PM         Sharon A
April 11  PM        diane in wisconsin
April 15 PM         Intense Guy


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Photos, Genealogy and a Mystery

I have been working on some old photos, I found a whole packet of photos that needed to be sorted and marked with the year and the complete names.  Also found some more stuff for the grands memory binders. 

Found quite a few old graduation photos of Far Guy so the grands will each get one of those too.

Then I needed a small all day project.  My other baby brother asked for a copy of the family trees I have been working on.  I decided to work another leg or an arm…

Lucked out and found an old obit for my GG Grandmother Christina who died on June 25 1918.  Obituaries are a wealth of information…if it is correct.  So off I went to verify information …there were two typos in the obit (transcribers make errors too). 

Christina married name Kuhn maiden name unknown was born Feb 5 1847 in  Germany…wish I knew where??  Her husband must have been Fritz Kuhn born Dec 20 1843 and died April 13 1910 they are buried next to each other... and I found Census Records for them. They had at least 8 children in Germany:  Robert, Otto, William, Albert, Hadwig, Elsie, Frank and a unknown.   They immigrated in1884 with children 17 years - 2 years old. That must have been some trip.  Lena was born in Kansas in 1885. (Hadwig and Elsie were twins…many times twins did not live the births were difficult because usually one twin was breech…many times the babies and the Mothers all died.)

Well anyways I figured out where most of the children are or were.  Bits and pieces fit together nicely for me…a name is just a name but I have some old photos of these people that my Mother has shared with me.  Those old photos are all marked with names.

But I still have a mystery to solve:

A number of years ago my Mother gave me two CDV albums.  Mom cannot remember who they came from…just from family. One is from Germany and the other is clearly from the Glanders because Grandma Anderson is in that album and possibly even my Grandmother.  I will scan the photos and enlarge them so my Mother can look at them.

Glander Album None of these photos are marked….even though the album had a spot to list the photos.

Looks like Aunt Skip and cousin Linda

These two gals look like my Aunt Skip and my cousin Linda…distant relatives sometimes have the same features.

I believe that Christina may have kept the other album.  She was from Germany.  Hadwig and Elsie were born in either Wartenberg or Stuttgart depending on what reference you believe.  Those towns are 475 miles from Bremen and Bremerhaven (Bremen Harbour) where most of these photos were taken. Did Christina live in Bremen before she was married?  She was married sometime before 1870..possibly 1869 (first baby born in 1870)

I wish I had a photo of her.

Could this be Christina

The first photo in the album…usually the album owner puts their photo in the first page.   Could this be Christina?  I am not certain we will ever know.

There are many cousin look alikes in this album

Looks like Debbie and Danny

These two look like Cousins Deb and Danny…most certainly relatives. 

There are four branches that this last album could come from.

Falnes…they were from Norway. Highly unlikely that she would have an album photographed in Germany.

Glander…German born but highly unlikely….but still a possibility.   GG Grandpa Johann must have had a wife…I have no idea what her name was.  He was born in 1827 and that makes his wife a tad old to have CDV’s from 1860-1870.

Drewes…The name was given to a young man either he was orphaned or he was not wanted by his family.  His name was Christian Hyer or Higher before he took the Drewes name at his confirmation in 1884 in Wolcottsville NY.  Not likely that he had a photo album. Was he really German? Who knows.

Kuhn…Christina born in Germany in 1847…the most plausible conclusion.

It will probably remain a mystery.  I will put a note in each album with my thoughts.

My brain is mush after a day of research, tomorrow I will transcrible all my notes into something readable. Please mark your old photos with whole names and the year…the four W’s is the best who, when, where and why.

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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Midway Memories: Ron

The Carnival was the perfect place for college age kids to work.  Ron who was not yet my Brother In Law came out as a High School student and returned summer after summer until he graduated from college.  His home town was a small town in Iowa.

Ron was second man on the wheel with Dale and then Hubert before he went to the Loop or Loop O Plane.  Far Guy says he helped him buck tubs sometimes when he was bored.



The Loop just went around and around…upside down and right side up.  There was room for eight to ride at one time (four per tub).  Not a great capacity ride but in it’s day it was a popular ride.  It was also a ride where you had to keep a bucket of water handy…because sooner or later some one was going to puke.

“Shakes”  ever heard of them?  That is what is left by the public in a ride…a camera, loose change etc… if the ride shook them loose and they were left behind then the ride boy would usually keep them. Strangest shake he ever got was someones false teeth.

Well during those summer days in the 1960’s he courted Far Guy’s sister and they were married in 1968.  The first time I met Ron was the day before he married Jan.  He made a whole bunch of home made beer…Far Guy had one bottle.  There is something in the homemade fermentation process that Far Guy is allergic to….he got sicker than a dog.  He was supposed to pick up the wedding cake and the green bread in Detroit Lakes and get it to the church.  His Mother called me, he got as far as my home place and I drove the rest of the way and the cake and the green bread was delivered on time. ( Green bread…back then it was quite fashionable to have special bread made, it was sliced lengthways and it was spread with ham salad or turkey salad or what ever combinations of cheese spread and meat you wanted, sliced  and cut into small sections with a tooth pick holding the layers together…. very festive and perfect for an afternoon wedding!)

Ron wrote a poem for his In Laws when they retired in 1977.

Poem from Ron (2)

I found this poem in an old photo album the other day.   I wonder if Ron even remembers that he wrote it?

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