Thursday, October 27, 2016

Bonnie, Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond

We had fabulous CIE tour guides!  They each were a wealth of information and they shared that history with us.  For the majority of our Scotland portion our guide was Regina.  

We set out for the Bonnie, Bonnie Banks of Lock Lomond.  I've sung those words, but I didn't know what the song was about.  Regina explained it to us, in her beautiful accent - I can't remember the whole story, but, Wikipedia knows...


There are many theories about the meaning of the song, most of which are connected to the Jacobite Uprising of 1745. One interpretation based on the lyrics is that the song is sung by the lover of a captured Jacobite rebel set to be executed in London following a show trial. The heads of the executed rebels were then set upon pikes and exhibited in all of the towns between London and Edinburgh in a procession along the "high road" (the most important road), while the relatives of the rebels walked back along the "low road" (the ordinary road travelled by peasants and commoners).[3]
Another interpretation of the "Low Road" is that it refers to the traditional underground route taken by the "fairies" or "little people" who were reputed to transport the soul of a dead Scot who died in a foreign land—in this case, England—back to his homeland to rest in peace.[3][4]
Another similar interpretation also attributes it to a Jacobite Highlander captured after the 1745 rising. The Hanoverian British victors were known to play cruel games on the captured Jacobites, and would supposedly find a pair of either brothers or friends and tell them one could live and the other would be executed, and it was up to the pair to decide. Thus the interpretation here is that the song is sung by the brother or friend who chose or was chosen to die. He is therefore telling his friend that they will both go back to Scotland, but he will go on the "low road", his body being paraded along the main road controlled by the Duke of Cumberland's forces, whereas his friend will have to head for the hilltops, taking longer to get back. Another supporting feature of this is that he states he will never meet his love again in the temporal world, on Loch Lomond. Some believe that this version is written entirely to a lover who lived near the loch.

Scottish history is one of many uprisings and hardships.  Coming from a Native American background - I could relate.  More on that in an upcoming post.

Loch Lomond is a freshwater loch on the boundary between the highlands and lowlands.  We happen to arrive on a misty morning - I would expect nothing less.  It was breathtakingly beautiful!

The highlands of Scotland are amazing!  The colors of fall surrounded us, the grasses, the heather and the crisp air - made this experience all the more enjoyable.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconisn.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


Haberdashery, happens to be my new favorite word.  My nephew sent me this - now just image the word being spoken by Sean his Scottish accent...

Maybe you've heard of this where you live, but I can assure you, here in Wisconsin, I had not.  My friend, Kathy, collects buttons and she asked me to pick her up one from Scotland.  So, I asked Anna, our family tour guide, to look up button shops in Glasgow.  She called me and said "mom, they call buttons and sewing notions 'hab something'."  So, this lead to our search for a Haberdashery shop.  

Oh, how I wanted to buy yardage.  The wool was incredible and reasonable!  It was hard for me NOT to buy, but I am going to check the shop for on-line purchases.  On to my story....

Since returning, I've researched the history of Haberdashery.  The word is believed to come from the Anglo-Norman word, hapertas, which means small wares.  The word "haberdasher" did appear in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales to describe peddlers who sold such items as needles, buttons and so on.  This dates back to the 14th century and could be equivalent of a "Medieval Five & Dime" store.   (I borrowed that one, I'm not that clever).  I love it!

We discovered this little shop on a stop in Ireland.  I love the addition of "& Vintage Gifts."  It is the vision and direction I had when I started the Hobby Farm here at the farm.  

In fact, here is a post from my facebook page back on July 22, 2015:  Plans are to have a retail space available hopefully by the upcoming semester. At every class, I am asked to sell additional supplies and I have. Now, I plan to have a retail area where you can purchase new and vintage items for your crafting pleasure. Vintage fabric, notions, wool, roving, buttons, ephemera and lots of misc. for repurposing.

Truthfully, I've been a "haberdasher" for years.  When you buy out estates there are always these types of items and I've sold them.  Now, it just seems sexier...especially in Sean Connery's say, "I'm a haberdasher, come visit my haberdashery!" 

I have been spinning an idea about a "Haberdashery Happenstance" possibly early 2017.  Keep watching for details.  

So, today I have plans to mark inventory for my booths - however, I will save the haberdashery for my happenstance sale.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Willow Tea Rooms, Glasgow, Scotland

Anna was our family "tour guide" as she researched places to go during our "free" time in each city.  Thanks Anna!  She found The Willow Tea Rooms and we started following them on Instagram weeks before.   

The Willow Tea Rooms
217 Sauchiehall Street
Glasgow, Scotland

Delightful, delicious and darling atmosphere!  2 thumbs up, 5 stars - excellent - a must if you go to Glasgow!

I had the traditional Scottish Breakfast - it was delicious!

I loved the potato cake.  That was my first taste of black pudding - it was better than I thought...(smile)...and probably the best we had in comparison to any at our hotel stays in Scotland.  Their sausages are really tasty too.  I don't know why, but Scots eat beans for breakfast - you know what they say..."beans, beans, the musical fruit..."

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconisn.  

Monday, October 24, 2016

A Window's View of Scotland & Ireland

I've just returned from an amazing trip to Scotland and Ireland.  I was blessed to be able to share this experience with my daughters Justine and Anna.  I will have several individual posts about our adventures, but wanted to share this "teaser post" with you...

Come follow along over the next several posts and view Scotland and Ireland through my lense and stories.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.    

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Life is Precious

The first night I was home from the hospital as a baby, my mom woke to make me a bottle.  When she came to check on me, my sister, Lynn had already made my bottle and was feeding me - she was 11.  I have 3 older sisters, all of whom have made an impact in my life, however, Lynn has always mothered me.  

Lynn had been sick for the past few weeks.  She had been bitten by a deer tick and contracted Lymes disease.  They treat this with antibiotics, however, she wasn't getting better.  It happens, that the tick that bit her was infected with Babesia that infects the blood.  The disease is called Babesiosis.  She was in the hospital for over a week, much of that time in ICU.  It was really scary  I wanted to be full of faith - but, people can die from this.  It was a tough week.  I'm happy to say, she is doing so much better!

Last Saturday was the 20th Annual Ringle Harvest Day - it was a huge success!

I am excited to share that my daughter's and I will be going on a trip to Scotland and Ireland.  I won't be blogging for a bit, but I can't wait to share all of our adventures with you.

My title is "Life is Precious" - it truly is!  Enjoy each day, no matter what it brings.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Ringle Harvest Day - 20th Anniversary History

When I was just a teenager, I wanted to turn an old shed behind my parent's garage into a shop.  One where I could sell antiques and my art.  I have had that dream forever....

When we bought our farm in 1994, I turned an old outbuilding into a shop.  It was that way until a tornado on July 16, 1997 blew it over.  Al built me another. 

In 1995, I had my first sale here.  I went to a George Woodrich auction on the Art in the Park weekend in Wausau. There weren't many people there, so I bought loads of stuff.  I wish now, I could have some of that back.  Anyway, I picked the 2nd Saturday in October to have the sale.  I invited my sister Lynn and friend Lisa to join me.  It was the next year, 1996, that I officially opened up my barn, garage and yard to vendors.  We had about 10 that first year.  Now we have about 110 and counting....

We joined 4-H in 1997 and it was then that I learned that the weekend I had my farm sale happened to fall during "National 4-H Awareness Week." 

Our 4-H club started out selling just rummage items.  Each year we added something to sell:  pumpkins, cornstalks, crafts and such.  The event grew and we had requests for food, so, our club started selling food.  That is how it all started.  

After 9 years hosting the sale at our farm, we outgrew it.  My insurance agent was also concerned when I told him about 1,000 people come...."what, you can't do that..."  So, the Town of Ringle invited us to move the event to occupy the 3 or so roads we have...Ringle is small - but on this day - everyone comes out to visit and buy.    

Favorite story:  Midnight my old barn cat...she is now 17...hid inside a vendor's car and spent the night in "town" at a hotel.   She did poop in their   The next year, they were sure to check their vehicle.  

So it's with that little story, I tell you - it's been 20 years!  I can't believe it!  I hope I've created some wonderful memories for my children, my 4-H kids and our community.  I will forever see the "Christiansen boys" pulling wagons of pumpkins to cars, Anna and Justine setting up our petting zoo and games and all the wonderful vendors I have met over the years.   Many of my vendor friends have passed on.  I will forever see them as they were selling in my yard.  I can still see my parents, driving up the driveway with a car full of my mom's baked goods.  People would be waiting in line for her pies.  Dan (who has passed on too) would be first in line....

This is a crazy, busy time for me - but, I will forever be grateful for those people who have crossed my path in some way due to this event.  Thanks for the memories!  

  Ringle, WI is exit 181 off Hwy 29. Take Cty Hwy Q north. We close the roads at 2nd Ave on Hemlock, Maple and Birch and at 1st and Cty Hwy Q. This whole area all the way to the Mountain Bay Trail is vendor selling booths. There is a walking path over the Mountain Bay Trail that leads to a gravel parking lot and surrounding grassy field - this area has vendor booths and the petting zoo. Across the street or in the Ringle Town Hall on the blacktop parking lot there are also vendor booths to include the Popplewood 4-H area. Shoppers may park on any of the other side roads, in the parking lots of the church and On Q Collision Center. Thank you.

 If you happen to live close, come on out, I'm in booth #38 & 39.  Stop and say "hi." 

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Friday, September 30, 2016

5 on Friday - Photos

 Dog sitting for Dilly

 My friend, Jackie, organized an Autumn Stroll Shop Hop, 3 shops I have booths in are participating.

 Working on the Ringle Harvest Day Vendor Map

I tried to make a pretty pie.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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