Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Iowa Waterfowl Seasons Approaching

The stirrings of waterfowl on the move came last week for me; Tuesday and Wednesday evenings to be exact.Tuesday evening a flock of ducks barely above tree top level over our timber were winging their way back North about a mile to the local marsh and Wednesday I sighted a V of geese headed South at the end of our half mile drive.
I have been waiting and watching ...some how having the feeling it wouldn't be long until I would be catching a glimpse of the start of the Fall migration. Sadie and I had gone out for an evening stroll as the sun was sinking in the western sky. The picture doesn't do the occasion justice. Always better to catch it first hand...

When the birds start on the move it brings to mind the months ahead. Does their activity mean we are going to see a drop in temperatures soon? At any rate it is only three weeks until the seasons begin.

The first Iowa Waterfowl Season opens on September18th and goes to the 22nd in both the North and South zones.This season allows for the hunting of Ducks, Mergansers and Coots. Here you will find the information about all the  Iowa Migratory Bird hunts - dates for species , licensing and regulations.

I haven't  visited the Marsh for waterfowl hunting purposes , but it certainly does look prime with all the rain we have been getting. Ready for the birds to stop over and maybe for the hunter to get a chance to put a few in his bag.
Hendrickson Marsh  August 26,2010

When I hear the guns going off I begin to daydream about the hunting successes and think of the dinners nature has been so gracious to provide.

Happy Waterfowl Hunting! Where ever you might be ... ;)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Making Homemade Bread

How many of you remember the aroma of homemade bread wafting through the house as it bakes when you were little?

Grandma's butter churn
My memories of homemade bread began with my paternal Grandma who lived a quarter of a mile from my family while we were growing up. She would use potato water for the liquid to get the bread started. My siblings and I would eat it with home-made butter...the cream coming from Grandpa's milk cow.

One of the most outstanding memories of the whole experience was in the Spring when the flavor of the first milk and cream took on a disgusting flavor other than the sweet milk we were accustomed to from the store.. It only lasted a couple of weeks until the forces of nature got things back on track. We would buy milk for our family when the milk cow wasn't producing. Soon we preferred the store bought, which we now know isn't as nutritious as its raw counterpart.

I keep telling my grandkids that we are going to use the churn to make butter, but so far the words haven't  created a concrete plan to get it done.

The churn became one of my family relics many years ago when we divided Grandpa and Grandma's possessions . One of those things you pull out once in a while to shake the dust off the past.

My choice to make homemade bread products came after Hubby and I moved into our first home. My thoughts on the subject were based on what you read on the ingredient panels of store bought. I wanted to eliminate the stuff I couldn't pronounce.

I found Organic becoming apart of my vocabulary, and investments in books from a leading organization called the Rodale Institute apart of my library. Today, I still try to do things as close as I can to a limited use of detrimental chemicals to beneficial insects and soil microbes.

This past week I pulled my recipe for Honey Wheat Bread out of my memory file. I am not sure I got all the ingredients just right but the end product was very tasty.

Dough punched down ready to divide
I quit making bread on a regular basis when the kids moved away from home. You know,the empty nest psychology, where the need to do things changes. Our son mentions often the time when I used to do this or that.

Another reason came into play when a different dietary philosophy took over for a time where carbohydrates from grains etc...weren't allowed. So, to bake bread would certainly put too much stress on staying on the straight and narrow.

Ready to bake
When the dough was divided I decided to separate it into approximately one pound sections. Since it doesn't contain preservatives the extra loaves were put into the freezer.

The good thing about making bread is that you can choose what shape it will take. In my past I have made dinner rolls, clover leaf rolls and even have made long braided loaves for variety.

Alrighty, time to put the bread into the oven  until it is browned and sounds hollow when you tap the top. There is another way to tell when it is done too. After years of making yeasty treats you can tell by the smell when it is ready to pluck from the oven.

Ready for butter and jelly
Looks like I will be making bread again soon. Here's trying to send the fresh bread aroma out your way... : )

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Overcoming Disabilities

We are seeing many inspirational videos coming from all different corners of the world.

Individuals determined not to let circumstances deter them from being apart of their community, their world. They have skillfully learned to adapt to what has been dealt them.

While visiting John's blog at Musing's of Murphyfish, attention was brought to Diane-Sage White Owl's post on her blog Blackbird. You might stop by to view the inspirational YouTube presentation of a courageous young man given what we think as great obstacles in the journey of human existence.

Sometimes we who have two eyes,two ears, two hands and two feet, need to get a reality check. Stop feeling sorry for ourselves. We, for one reason, or another feel we have the right to complain about our lives.

I guess if we don't like where we are, or what we are doing, change it. Like these two very talented, physically challenged, individuals that are the the focus of the videos. ;)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Iowa National Guard Deployment

The largest deployment of the Iowa National Guard since World War II has escalated in the last week.

Following is the schedule of past and future send - offs , there are seven more ceremonies before the largest departure is concluded on August 9th.

Friday, July 30

Battery B, 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery (approximately 45 Soldiers)
11 a.m., Iowa National Guard armory, 1511 N. POW Camp Road, Algona

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Brigade Combat Team (approximately 110 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Des Moines Area Community College (Boone campus), 1125 Hancock Dr., Boone

Eagle Grove
Detachment 1, Battery B, 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery (approximately 40 Soldiers)
11 a.m., Iowa National Guard armory, 216 S. Park Ave, Eagle Grove

Mt. Pleasant
832nd Engineer Company (approximately 50 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Mount Pleasant High School, 2104 S. Grand Avenue, Mount Pleasant

Detachment 1, 832nd Engineer Company (approximately 55 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Keokuk High School, 2285 Middle Road, Keokuk

Storm Lake
Company G, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (approximately 80 Soldiers)
11 a.m., Storm Lake High School, 621 Tornado Drive, Storm Lake

Sunday, August 1

Company A, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry (approximately 100 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Carroll High School, 2809 N. Grant Road, Carroll

Council Bluffs
-Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry
-Detachment 2, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry (Spencer unit)
-Detachment 1, Company B, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry
-Detachment 1, Company F, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
(approximately 215 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Mid-American Center, 1 Arena Way, Council Bluffs

Company A, Brigade Special Troops Battalion (approximately 75 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Modern Woodmen Park (River Bandits), 209 S. Gaines Street, Davenport

Company D, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry (approximately 50 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Denison High School, Fine Arts Center, 819 N. 16th Street, Denison

Battery A, 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery (approximately 80 Soldiers)
11 a.m., Estherville Armory, 1704 3rd Avenue South, Estherville

-Detachment 1, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry
-Company C, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry
-Detachment 1, Company C, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry (Newton unit)
(approximately 100 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Camp Dodge Freedom Center, 7105 NW 70th Avenue, Johnston

Red Oak
Company F, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (approximately 110 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Red Oak High School, 2011 N. 8th Street, Red Oak

-Company B, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry
-Detachment 2, Company B, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry (Corning unit)
(approximately 100 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Shenandoah High School, 1000 Mustang Drive, Shenandoah

Monday, August 2

Charles City
Detachment 1, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry (approximately 35 Soldiers)
8 a.m., Iowa National Guard armory, 2003 Clark Street, Charles City

Detachment 1, Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry (approximately 35 Soldiers)
2 p.m., Iowa National Guard Armory, 1200 13th Avenue North, Clinton

Tuesday, August 3

Cedar Falls
-Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry
-Company E, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
-Detachment 2, Company E, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (Iowa Falls unit)
(approximately 230 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., UNI Dome, 2501 Hudson Road, Cedar Falls

-Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry
-Company D, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry
-Detachment 1, Company E, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
(approximately 130 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Peosta Community Center, 7896 Burds Road, Peosta

Iowa City
Company B, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry (approximately 100 soldiers)
10 a.m., City High School, 1900 Morningside Drive, Iowa City

Iowa Falls
Company C, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry (approximately 75 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Iowa Falls High School, 1903 Taylor Avenue, Iowa Falls

Detachment 1, Company C, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry (approximately 40 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Oelwein Middle School, 300 12th Avenue SE, Oelwein

Thursday, August 5

-Troop A, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry
-Troop B, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry
(approximately 130 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Ankeny High School, 1302 North Ankeny Blvd., Ankeny

Troop C, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry (approximately 80 Soldiers)
9 a.m., Le Mars High School, 921 3rd Avenue SW, Le Mars

Sioux City
-Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry
-Company D, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
(approximately 170 Soldiers total)
10:30 a.m., Sioux City East High School, 5011 Mayhew Drive, Sioux City

Friday, August 6

Detachment 1, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Brigade Special Troops Battalion (approximately 50 Soldiers)
10 a.m., Marshalltown Community College, 3700 S. Center St, Marshalltown
Saturday, August 7

Cedar Rapids
-Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Brigade Special Troops Battalion
-Company B, Brigade Special Troops Battalion
-Company C, Brigade Special Troops Battalion
(approximately 340 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., US Cellular Center, 370 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids

Sunday, August 8

Cedar Rapids
-Detachment 1, Company A, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
-Detachment 2, Company A, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (Oelwein unit)
-Company B, 334th Brigade Support Battalion
(approximately 160 Soldiers total)
2 p.m., US Cellular Center, 370 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids

Monday, August 9

Des Moines
-334th Brigade Support Battalion
-Detachment 1, Company C, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (Corning unit)
(approximately 340 Soldiers total)
10 a.m., Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium, 703 3rd Street, Des Moines

Tuesday, August 3rd, brought our family to Iowa City to share in the deployment ceremony for our soldier and  others who would be leaving for a year or more in Afghanistan.

There was a small window of opportunity before and after the ceremony for the families to connect  before the troops boarded the buses for Camp Shelby, Mississippi.
During the ceremony we were educated in  many outstanding  periods in the history of Company B, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry,34th Division. As citizen volunteers, supporting the" Regulars", they have provided
impressive defence capabilities. A particular era in their history,World War II in Italy, gave them a distinction they still carry today.

Caught a picture of the travel coaches before the ceremony...While all the supporters and soldiers were inside, the cities  of Coralville and Iowa City provided  fire fighting trucks eqipped with 100' aerial platforms to suspend a huge American flag over the exit  the buses would be using to start the next leg of the journey.

After the men and women boarded the buses, Iowa City Police officers started the procession with the motorcycle Patriot Guard falling into line.

Time to wave good-bye, put our hands together in a clap or send a message of support by raising our American flag.

I want to extend my best wishes for their continued safety through  each day...God speed until they are finally able to retrace their steps back to the beginning, where they started ,back into the arms of waiting family and friends...