Sunday, July 28, 2013

Wisconsin Valley Fair - Marathon County 2013

I won't be able to blog this next week, as it is our county fair.  This will be an emotional fair for me, as it will be our last year as a 4-H exhibiting family.   Our daughters each joined 4-H in kindergarten and stayed involved until grade 13 - college freshman.  Our years in 4-H have been filled with wonderful memories, experiences and friendships.   4-H is a wonderful organization that involves the whole family. 

I was asked last year if I would be interested in accepting a position as a department superintendent.  I LOVE 4-H and plan to still be our general leader and project leader as long as the club wants me.  This opportunity to be one of the superintendents in cultural arts was the next step for me to share my interests with youth in Marathon County.  

(Jackie is spelled wrong....Jacky)

If you want to see what is happening at the fair this week, check out my instagram  and follow me:  Dickybirdsnest.  I really like instagram as I don't have a face book.  I post a lot of pictures. 

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Square Dancing - Langlade County Fair 2013

Marlene, my mother-in-law is the one in red.  Rosie is in pink.  Marlene started square dancing as a respite from the care she so lovingly provided for Ed, my father-in-law.  Ed suffered from MS and Marlene cared for him, every day, in their home until the day he passed.  She is a testament to the commitment of "in sickness and health" I don't know too many people who could have done what Marlene did.  Bless her heart.  

Anyway, she loves to square dance and is good at it.  She has made so many friends that have helped her over the years cope with the loss of her husband and being alone.  Rosie and Ray (the couple in pink) have been a large part of that as well as her friends in the Gateway Squares Dance Club.  They performed yesterday at the Langlade County fair in Antigo.  Alan and I drove over there to see her dance.  We had fun and Al actually danced with his mom.  They had asked for audience members to come up....we were in the front row....Al is not much of a dancer.  We had a good time.

You are never to old to start a new hobby, learn something new and have fun. 
Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Popplewood 4-H Animal Science Night at our Farm

Thursday night, we hosted an animal science night here at our farm.  We had guest speakers that shared their knowledge in horses, sheep, beef, dairy and rabbits.  We had several educational packets for each species along with showmanship tips.  This was a fun and informative night.  Thank you Justine, Sara, Jess, James and Anna for helping and sharing your expertise with the younger 4-Hers.  This is what 4-H is all about!

We have many new and younger members that are interested in showing an animal next year as well.  This night gave an opportunity for a real "hands on" experience to see what project they might be interested in.  I had fun as well. 

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Grilled Lamb Chops

Grilled lamb chops, grilled sweet potatoes and grilled veggie bundles.  Super EASY and keeps your kitchen clean. 
This is our home raised lamb.  Trim off most of the fat.

Marinade lamb chops for several hours.  Here is my recipe:  2T honey, 2T red wine vinegar, 2T balsamic vinegar, 2T olive oil, 2T Tastefully Simple Dried Tomato & Garlic Pesto Mix and 1t Tastefully Simple Garlic Garlic, S&P

Do not over cook the lamb.  I cook mine like 5 min on each side for larger pieces and take the smaller ones off a little sooner.  Lamb is best medium rare. 

I also grilled some sweet potatoes - I actually did these first as they take about 25 - 30 minutes on the grill.  I just cut them in half and drizzled with olive oil, s & p. 

I had some fresh veggies, some from my garden and others from the farmer's market.  I diced up carrots, zucchini, celery, onions and green peppers.  Mixed them together with olive oil, s & p and Tastefully Simple Garlic Garlic.  I then made foil bundles and put them on the grill after about 15 minutes after the sweet potatoes.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Garden Pictures

2013 has been a challenging year for this gardener!  When you live in Wisconsin, you spend winter months under your blanket, cup of coco, seed catalog, notebook, dreaming and drawing out your plans.  Some of my best gardens are in that notebook - if only on paper. 

We had a long winter, wet cool spring and plenty of deer.  I knew, when we were feeding that "ratty buck" all winter, it would come back to bite me. 

The most disappointing part for me was my sweet corn.  I planted early, 30 rows of 25 hills with 4-5 kernels in each - that's was a lot of work.  Well, all the rain after I planted, standing water and deer - left me with NO corn.  Good thing my friends Linda and John plant acres of everything.  I will just buy some from them. 

Here is what I have left in my raised beds. 

The deer loved the beans and beets!

That is all that is left of the beets - they pulled them up and ate only the tops. 


I plan on a nice salad for lunch with one of those green peppers. 

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

Motivational Monday - Success and Making Do

What does it mean to "make do?"  I looked it up, this is the definition:  "to settle for, accept and cope with, manage to get along with."    I would actually say to get along with out too. 

I'm sure we all can think if times in our lives when we had to  "make do"... basically, to accept things for what they are.   I like the saying:  "when life hands you lemons, make lemonade." 

First, I LOVE lemonade!  Second, what choice do we have?  Third, take charge of the situation and try your best to "make do."
I think of many situations in my life, seems like I was born to "make do" - not that I am feeling sorry for myself - I know I'm blessed!  However, I'm thankful for the training and trials that have prepared me for knowing HOW to "make do."  NOTE:  Mamas teach your children how to "make do" - don't spoil your children with stuff.  NOTHING compares to a good work ethic, coping with less and making do!!

I read this post:   These tips are in the perspective of business, however still applicable to everyday living. 

1. Make Materialism Irrelevant

Fancy cars and houses are all well and good, but many foolishly focus on the byproducts of success, rather than concentrating on building sustainable success in the first place. Establish a bare minimum for your material needs, and then you can enjoy the benefits of success, debt and stress free.

2. Enhance Knowledge

Success comes faster to those who are open, active learners. The higher up the success ladder you climb, the more complex the systems and opportunities that are presented to you. Absorb all the information you can and if you sense a gap you can't fill, connect with people who have the knowledge you need.

3. Manage Relationship Expectations

People in your life require time. Successful individuals attract folk and so they have to carefully regulate the time they can spend with others. It's hard to limit the time you share and still make people feel important. Make choices about the people who matter to you and determine how you each can get value from your interactions. Then make sure they understand your limitations so they don't take it personally when you can't be present.

4. Practice Emotional Self-Awareness

Not all successful people are calm and nice. In fact, many can be volatile. But most are very aware of their tempers and idiosyncrasies. They know how to use their emotions to get what they want from life and work hard to make sure feelings don't become a detriment. Know yourself and learn how to let your emotions work for you in positive ways.

5. Commit to a Physical Ideal 

Everyone has a vision of their own perfect body. They don't have to be fashion models or athletes to be happy. But physical health is a consideration in their life and it's a big distraction when it gets out of whack. Determine the body you believe is worth working for and set a game plan to achieve and maintain it.

6. Gain Clarity About Spirituality

There are many highly successful people like Richard Branson and Warren Buffett who don't consider religion to be important or relevant. But they have a clear point of view as to the role spirituality plays in their life. Find your own way to be at one with the universe and be clear and deliberate in how you practice.

7. Adhere to a Code of Ethics  

Really successful people live by rules. They may not be the rules of others, but consistency is important for them to maintain power and stability. Their individual view of how the world works is the basis for how they believe people should be treated and they will defend it until their dying day. Determine your ethical lines and broadcast them loud and clear so people around you know where you stand.

8. Focus on Time Efficiency

Prioritization is a key component of success. You can't reach your pinnacle if you are wasting time on distractions. Integration of activities frees up time for greater achievement. Spend your time on activities that are fun, enlightening and productive and soon you'll have gained hours to reap the benefits of success.
Ultimately, really successful people live their lives by design instead of default, so if you want to be one of them, dedicate time and effort to determining the plan for your preferred future and execute that plan in a focused and consistent manner

I recently read another article about the most successful people and what they all have in common.  One of the most significant things was their ability to accept the situations in life that they were in.  Reinventing themselves, adjusting their behavior and attitude and learning to "make do." 

I have been working on ME this year.  I have been reflecting, studying, changing and motivating myself to strive to be "better."  I hope these Motivation Monday's posts are not only helping me, but others as well.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin. 


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Viva La Cottage Vintage Market, Bailey's Harbor, WI

I have been following Viva La Cottage's blog for some time.  She hosts a vintage market in beautiful Door County, WI.  My friend and I decided to take a drive over there and check it out.  Very scenic drive and beautiful little town.


The market was lovely!  Beautiful setting, well run, organized flow to the booths, reasonable prices and friendly vendors.  I really want to do this one next Viva, if you are reading this...please let me in...I have good junk.. :)

This was the view across the street - gorgeous! 

(I like the name Justice - maybe for a grandchild....)

There were several bed and breakfast and inns on this street with beautiful gardens.

Added bonus - it is cherry picking time in Door County!  We came home with pints of cherries, blueberries, dried cherries, frozen cherries...fudge...pies...cherry donuts.....o.k. you get the picture! 

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.