Friday, November 22, 2013

Rural Health Photo Contest Winner

In early January of 2012 my dad, who was 87 at the time, was asked to participate in a photoshoot at an area hospital.  We got some outfits together, gave him a haircut and took him.  He said almost everyone needed some makeup, but he didn't need any.  A professional photographer came in to take photos of him and others.  They had different scenarios.  They had different departments of the hospital represented. They had maternity, family practice, physical therapy, volunteers, imaging and geriatric care.  This happened a couple weeks before mom died.   It's a shame she died before seeing the final pictures.  She would have been proud of her husband being a model at his age.  All of the photos turned out great and large 4 by 6 foot canvas prints were made of each department and placed on the walls throughout the hospital.

The one of my dad was also made into a banner which is hanging in front of the nursing home which 
 is associated with the hospital.  


We got used to seeing the banners and the photo and forgot about it.  Then this week we heard that this photo had won a photo contest.

Wisconsin Office of Rural Health
Wisconsin Office of Rural Health
Yesterday, November 21, was Rural Health Day.  It was a day to showcase rural America and to increase awareness of rural health-related issues.  As part of the celebration, Rural Health sponsored a a photo contest.  The hospital submitted the photos from the large canvas prints they had done and three of them won—including the one of my dad.  When he heard the news he puffed up like a proud peacock and grinned.  It was so much fun to see that you are never too old to be proud of yourself.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Holiday Parade

Oh Dear.  It isn't even Thanksgiving Day yet, and the local communities are having their holiday parades.  We went to one tonight in Berlin Wisconsin.  Every year our grandchildren are in the parade.  This year it was only the youngest who participated.  He was in the parade with his daycare.  He was so excited.  He didn't even want to go to school today because he didn't want to miss going to the parade.  Last night they decorated his truck and he drove the parade route.

Ewan's truck all decked out for the Holiday parade.

He drove the whole parade route.

His mom and dad walked along beside him.
The parade is over and Ewan is heading home.

Even Piper the Puppy got to walk along.

It was difficult to photograph in the dark, but I got a few shots of some of the floats.  The weather was cool but not too bad.  It was supposed to snow a little but it didn't.  It was a perfect night for a parade.  Now to get on with the Holiday preparations.  The next month will be a busy one.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Surprise Bluebird Visitor

Today I woke up really early.  It was very dark outside.  I went in the kitchen and made the coffee as I do every morning.  Then I turned on the TV and watched the local news.  I saw there was a bad car accident and other sad news.  Then I heard that a baby was born on Sunday in the Green Bay area with a broken collar bone.  They named the baby Aaron Rodger after the Green Bay Packer quarterback Aaron Rodgers who has a broken collar bone.  It was a happy story.  As it began to get light out, I noticed the birds were really busy at the bird feeders.  They hadn't been very active lately, so I figured that this means the weather is about to change.  That fact was confirmed by the weather report.  As I looked I saw the rose breasted nuthatches eating seed.  Then I thought the nuthatch looked really big.  I looked more closely and discovered it was a bluebird.  This is really late in the year for us to see bluebirds.  I grabbed the camera and took the first picture through the dirty window.  It was just getting light so the picture didn't turn out very bright but you can see how cute he is.

 I watched as he checked out all the bluebird houses.  I grabbed the meal worms and put some in the feeder.  Eventually he left and I'm not sure if he will stay or if he was just passing through on the way to a warmer climate.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Ebleskiver Pan

Today while putting some pans away in the little drawer under the stove, I discovered an Ebleskiver pan.  I have seen it spelled Aebleskiver and Ableskiver also.   It had been my mom's.   I'm pretty sure it was not the one her mother used.   Even though it is well seasoned, I don't remember my mom making them.   I kept it, but I never tried them before.  For those who don't know, an Aebleskiver is a Danish Pancake Ball. 

The pan says Ebleskiver Pan and then Apple Pancake Balls.

I had a recipe which I don't think this is a family recipe either.  I thought this would be something cute to make for Christmas brunch, but I needed to practice.  Way back, probably before 1930, my great grandmother made these.  I figured if she could make dozens on a wood stove, why couldn't I.  Well, it wasn't as easy as it looks.  I finally got the hang of turning them over.  I didn't have a skewer which might have worked better,  so I used a toothpick and it worked.

Danish Pancake Balls (Aebleskiver)

This recipe makes about a dozen pancake balls.  You can eat them with butter and jam or just rolled in powdered sugar. 

1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons of flour
2 Tablespoons of sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon or cardamon
14 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup milk
2 Tablespoon melted butter

Mix the flour with the sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.  Then beat the egg and blend with milk and butter.  Add to the dry ingredients and stir until evenly moistened.

Put the Ebelskiver pan over the heat and heat the pan.  Then bush the wells of the pan with butter and fill almost full with batter.  Let them cook for a couple minutes.  You can see the bubbles form on top just like when making a regular pancake.  You can place a piece of apple or piece of sausage into the batter before you turn them.  Then take a tooth pick and flip the pancake over.  When the bottom is browned.  They come out very clean in the shape of a ball.

The pancake balls just before they were ready to turn.

The pancake balls are ready to eat.  Too bad we can't eat wheat anymore.

I forgot that many of us are not eating wheat but they were fun to make, and maybe I will make them again for Christmas.  I will give my dad a couple to see if they are good.   He is 89 and isn't too worried about eating gluten, high fructose corn syrup or fats.  Maybe that's the answer,  just eat what ever you want and not worry about it.  I did find a gluten free recipe and I may try that someday.  Stay tuned.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Country Values Country Store

We made a wonderful discovery recently.  I think I mentioned it briefly in another blog, but I want to talk more about it.  Last summer, we noticed a sign while traveling between our house and Montello, Wisconsin.  The actual address is W5798 Hwy 23, Princeton, WI  54968.  They are open everyday except Sunday.  The phone number is 920-896-1025. 

We didn't stop at the time because we were on a schedule, and we weren't quite sure what it was.  It looked like a little country store. We made a note to come back later.

Country Values Store

Since it is only two miles from our house, we returned a few weeks later to check it out.  I am very glad we did.  It is actually referred to as a "Bent and Dent" store.  Other bent and dents we have shopped at were not nearly as clean and tidy.  Actually I saw very few bent and dented cans.  This store had a variety of grocery items, some craft items,  Amish bakery, produce when it is in season and hand made Goat milk soaps and lotions.

A lot of canned goods neatly arranged on the shelf.

Coconut water, sparkling cranberry juice and other drinks.

We have been there several times now.  We bought a few new things last week that were gluten free items.  When I got home and tasted them, they were delicious.  We went back today to buy more.

Udi's granola usually sells for about $4.75 and Blue Diamond Nut Thins are $2.50 in a store.
As you can see we paid a lot less for these items.  $1.50 for granola and $.50 for the Nut Thins.

 When we first drove up we noticed they had a lot of goats. 

These goats were very friendly, and I knew why when we walked into the store.  On the counter were little packets of goat food.  The goats were hoping that we would feed them and not just take their picture.

I asked the proprietor of the store about the goats and if she made the soaps.  She told me she did and that she made each batch in a crock pot, but uses goat milk instead of the usual water.  I bought a bar of soap that smelled like lemons.  It is wonderful and leaves my skin so soft.  I will definitely be buying more of Creamy Doe Suds.

Hand made goat milk products like soap and lotions.
If any of you want to learn more about this store you can visit them on Facebook.  

They post what is going on and any new items that arrive.  Recently they have a lot of gluten free items at a wonderful price.  It gave us the opportunity to try some items we wouldn't normally have access to or wouldn't want to pay full price for.  I really like visiting small businesses like this and wish them all the best in their new business venture.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Deer Hunting Season In Wisconsin is Coming Up

I don't have a lot to say today.  This weekend has been very dark and dreary although the temperatures were quite mild for Wisconsin.   We had about an inch of rain in our gauge.  That would have converted into a fair amount of snow, so I guess I shouldn't complain.  Next weekend is the beginning of the gun deer hunting season.  It lasts for nine days.  We aren't hunters and I think the deer know it.  As I told a friend, the deer know our woods is a safe house.  We certainly see more at this time of year than we do the rest of the year.  Here are some of the photos we had on the trail camera from the past few nights.  I wrote about putting the pumpkins out.  I also put corn for them to eat.  It wouldn't be fair to feed them and then shoot them.  They are welcome to stay as long as they want.