Friday, December 31, 2010

Deer Shotgun Season 1 Day Two in Reflection

Day 2 of Shotgun Season 1,December 5th, started off with Spot and Stalk. I tried to get outside for the morning passage, but the deer came back 15 minutes earlier than  usual. A doe with fawn came trotting through the soybean field heading south through the pasture west of the house. Watching from inside the house I grabbed my shotgun and headed out the backdoor since I was already dressed in my hunters orange.

Down the back steps, stopping to look in all directions, I continued to watch the open space between our trailer and new house construction for signs of deer in the pasture. Trying to sneak... I thought I was doing good,just not good enough. Getting close to the southwest corner of the new house I heard rustling in the timber. A group of six does,fawns and one dominant buck ran swiftly from their bedding area along a fence line bordering the timber/pasture. The does and fawns ran in long leaping strides without looking back, but the buck ran into the middle of the pasture,paused and stared. A challenge?  It was 7:00 A.M. and I let one slug fly...As it would happen the only one in the two Iowa seasons that went from December 4th - 8th, and December 11th-19th. That incident ended my morning hunt. When they leave it is a long time before they return, if they return during daylight hours.

Being outside prior to and between the hunting seasons gave me a front seat to witness rutting pursuits. It ignited fires,the basal feelings of hunter and prey.

The 2:30 hour rolled around and my Mentor had staked his spot in the same place as the day before on our fence line shooting onto my side.

We didn't have any snow at the time. However, it was still cold and I had to get bundled up to stand waiting for the deer heading back out to graze. This time I got in the pick-up and headed to the other end of the property on a fence line bordering another neighbor's crop ground, a very busy location.

I headed out before the call came from the "Group Hunters" to inform Hubby and me they were going to come through the timber again.I apparently was wrong in assuming that they would only be flushing our timber once. My reasoning was they have a huge amount of property between them to hunt. Why would they need to come back?

Standing for what I felt was at least an hour,not seeing ,or hearing anything I moved a few feet to get a different perspective on the trails. A little while later I turned slightly to see two fawns moving quickly in my direction,they saw me and cut into the timber east of me. That is when I saw orange clad men getting lined up,stationed on the far fence for a drive onto the open soybean field.

Feeling uneasy about my location I moved further inside my property to another timber edge. My movements slow in an effort to stalk,I found two fawns bedded down. I sent them straight east...

There was a stirring of dry leaves, activity of deer? I waited and waited.The choice for me to head back to the homestead side of the ravine was made. Upon my reaching the pick-up,putting my shotgun in it's sleeve for transporting, I climbed in and started the engine. I stopped after getting turned around and headed down the lane. Spotting 2 deer in a panic coming out from the ravine to my right I wanted them to cut south for the hunters now in wait. Moving slowly back home I kept scanning for activity.

Reaching the house I looked down the fence line to see my Mentor field dressing another deer. Same time...same circumstances, a lactating doe, as the day before.

Later, I was informed by my neighbor who had gained permission for the "Group Hunters" to be here that he had flushed a "Big Buck" in my direction. However, the large group of deer they were moving wouldn't go until I had vacated the area.

The good news being that the buck intended for me,a 14-point, was taken by my young neighbor,son of the aforementioned neighbor. He sure has started off his hunting experiences with a story to tell....

So went the second day of  Iowa Shotgun Season #1. ; )

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Iowa Deer Shotgun Season 1 Day One in Reflection

I  want to take some time in reflecting on my Whitetail hunting experiences for the shotgun seasons that have just gone by here in Iowa...This post had begun much earlier in the month, but my concentration to complete it has become divided with a few other activities.

What a day for the opener of Shotgun Deer here in Central Iowa! December 4th, started off cold and blustery and ended cold and blustery. We didn't get the snow our fellow Iowans got Friday night...the line fell  northeast of us.

This Fall the snow occurrences have skirted to the West-Northwest and to the East-Northeast. The dusting we received overnight  vanished due to the hefty breezes blowing past. I am thankful for the lack of snow at the moment...

Shotgun Deer for 2009 gave us a couple of feet of  unstable, gravelly snow to trip through. Conditions that I didn't find appealing .I didn't get to spend much time pursuing deer, because my Mom fell and broke her shoulder a few days before the season started.

Getting back to yesterday,I didn't get to go out for the morning passage - when the deer come back from their night-time browsing activities, many times they come through our yard on their way to bed down for a bit.

Before Thanksgiving my neighbor to the South who hunts with a  group of at least 14 other guys  using the drive method to concentrate the deer to shorten the time to fill their tags, asked about pushing deer out of my timber. I agreed.

I had some messages on my answering machine that they wanted to come to my timber as the last place on their itinerary for the day. They weren't positive of the time they would be coming through.

Having an errand to run in the morning put me a little behind in my household chores. So I tried to play catch up after lunch.At 2:30 I took Sadie out for a short stroll in preparation  for getting dressed in hunting garb, and get outside to stake a spot. On our stroll behind the garden our activity set off a flurry of activity - it seems to be a perennially popular bedding area at this time of year.While we were making our rounds in the yard I caught sight of my Mentor down the ravine a bit on our fence line. I  hoped our flurry of activity would have sent a deer in his direction,but at that time it didn't happen.

I went back into the house to get all ready to go outside- heading back behind the garden once again to see if I could stir up anymore deer and send them a short distance for the benefit of another. Not seeing anything,I took off, in the direction where  fresh buck rubs had been popping up almost daily for the last two weeks.

On the way to my spot in a downed tree in between two fields I sent a doe and nice sized buck in search of another place to bed down. Being caught off guard and heavy brush kept me from sending a slug in either situation.

Getting to my position I stood for a while before a pick-up truck and occupants headed down to begin the drive through the timber. Hearing gunfire to the south I hoped they would send something in my direction. I saw a young doe come back and enter the timber too far to the east for shooting range. Then I saw a doe with two fawns come trotting in a hurry to get away from the fray. The doe stood visibly upset with nose and mouth pointed to the wind tasting what lay ahead. Then they too took off to the point where the first doe had entered back into the timber.

Another gun shot went off. This time it was up by my house, where I had last seen my Mentor...He had gotten a lactating doe. I am thinking the one that had just past me with young in tow.

I tried to be helpful in getting his deer moved over some rough terrain back to his property and up an incline to his pick-up. We eventually got it loaded and hung in his garage...So went the first day of Iowa Shotgun Season #1.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

Twas the Day before Christmas

Twas the day before Christmas and all through North Dakota the pick-ups, bobcats, road-graders and Snowplows were all busy moving the new fallen snow....

Jolly ol' Hubby, and  Merry Me, had come north early to escape the travel woes forecast for the holidays. Our little red sleigh filled with happiness and cheer sped lively to here...there.... and here...for we were headed to share the Joy of the season with family not often seen.

Our time will be  spent with family, food and friends. What could be a better combination for celebration than that?

My speedy Santa helper would like to deliver some Seasons greetings to all.

Timber  Life and friends wish you a very Merry Christmas ...

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Forensic Find

Warning :To my readers who are squeamish about skeletal remains,this post isn't for you.


This past week I was meandering across the soybean field that was harvested almost a month ago. I like to watch the crops grow in the Spring,and Summer, but appreciate when the fields open up again for exploration, and hunting in the Fall and Winter.

I am a student of my immediate environment, in hopes of observing patterns from year to year.

On this day, our dog Sadie was off getting her sniff quotient satisfied,as I was taking my time moving from one place to another. My eyes to the ground, I kept scanning the crop debris for interesting rocks that have worked their way to the soil surface, or something out of the ordinary.

I came across an exposed rock, one among thousands in the field. However, this one caught my attention with what first looked like broken egg shells laying beside it. I tried to rationalize that some animal may have carried them away from a turkey nest earlier in the season and they were just now being exposed.

Using the tip of my shoe I tried to turn the egg shell over. It soon became apparent that what I was seeing was most certainly not egg shells, but the top part of a skull. I bent over to get a closer look. Scooping away bean chaff I saw something else that reminded me of a canine molar. Again, after closer examination, I found that it was a bone that would make up part of a spine. Eventually, the total picture of what I had found began to take shape.

The whole find could be contained within my closed hands. Holding the skull bones ever so gently so they wouldn't collapse.

Now, what did I find? The jawbone reminds me of a miniature deer. There are remnants of hair on a couple of pieces of the bone, not enough to be used for identification though.

Inside the jawbone are teeth that had not yet erupted to become useful. I did not find any evidence of sharp,ripping type teeth, that would indicate an omnivore.

The condition of the bones lead me to believe that these remains are from the Spring,because they don't show extreme yellowing,or drying.

It is apparent I am missing  pieces to my puzzle that might more clearly give me the answers I seek. For now it is intriguing to consider the possibilities... ;)

What would you venture to say once owned these bones?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Uh Hum! Lovely day...
Tippy toe,tippy toe....
Ignoring the camera,ignoring the camera...
You who? Girls are you over there?!?
Now I hear you. Comin' Tom!
Have a Safe and Happy Holiday All!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Barred Owl Trail Camera Moment

I last posted about my new Bushnell Trophy Cam. At that time I was changing its location every day or two. I have so many places and animals to watch...

When I picked up my memory card on the morning of November 3rd, it took me a minute to decipher the first image, not what I had expected. It wasn't a deer!

It looks like a Barred Owl was doing a little night time hunting in range of the camera.

I have found a website that offers recorded vocalizations of male, and female, separately and an interaction between the two. Maybe you too have been treated to their raucous exchanges on your visits outside? Their range covers half the United States and extends into Canada.

Commonly here at Timber Life about 3:00 or 4:00 in the afternoon the calls start echoing - letting the timber know they are awake, and soon will be leaving their nests to begin the hunt.

There were some extremely early morning hours this past Summer, when I wasn't aware of how close they were until one of their unusual owl calls came slicing through the pitch black darkness to stir my half awake brain cells. If I wasn't awake before, I certainly was after.

I am glad to share the same space and get a chance to see what the outdoor life offers when the Trail Camera brings them into view...;)

Note of Recognition: I would like to thank  Mr. Bob Pearson for granting me permission to link to the Barred Owl vocalizations on his website. I appreciate the work he has done to provide them for public education.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

New Trail Camera Part 1

Moultrie Game Spy D40 Trail Cameras
Three years ago I was blessed to receive some wonderful additions to my Outdoor activity supplies.

Hubby saw to it that I was catching a picture of our wildlife even when I couldn't be on the lookout...A 24/7 job.

My two Moultrie Game Spy D40 cameras provided lots of fun, candid shots. Then they started taking pictures of nothing but the landscape. Missing whatever may have triggered them to snap a picture. I must say they withstood some pretty severe winter temperatures before I pulled them back inside the January of 2008. Then I put them back out when things warmed up in March and April. One memorable digital capture was some eye to ear action...

Last month my curiosity to watch deer movement coming into the rut grew to the point I went into serious research
mode for a replacement camera.

My information gathering brought me to the compact Bushnell Trophy Cam. I respect the Bushnell brand name for it's products in the field optics sector.

Next stop eBay. I am all for looking up deals on new merchandise. Yes, I also went to Amazon, and it's seller's page. Then off to Bushnell's website to see what might be of interest there.I ended back up at eBay. 

Qualities Needed for a Camera
1. IR trigger for the nighttime

2. Compact size - not clunky to transport
3. Picture size options

This model seems to be very user friendly. Having some previous knowledge of push button settings it didn't take long for me to work my way through the menu. They do offer a default mode suggested by the manufacturer if you decide not to customize.

I started with some manufacturer suggested settings and then a few days later did some customizing ,only to return to a few of the suggestions put forward in the owner's manual.

A setting I gravitated towards was the High sensitivity trigger for catching pictures. I soon found with the wind blowing the vegetation it was going off too often and filling up my 2MB memory card way to fast. The camera was only good for about four hours at that rate.

Some definite pluses for this camera is the ability for it to hold a 16 MB memory card, three different pixel settings(3,5,8), three sensitivity settings(low, normal,high) , a wide variety of timer options and last but not least the choice of camera or video modes.

I cannot speak for video quality yet, because I haven't tried it. I need to get a larger memory card so I won't miss anything when it starts to record.

Click here for a review by another blogger on the Trophy Cam.

Pictures will be forthcoming. Until then enjoy the outdoors! ;)

Important Update - I was looking over the memory card storage facts and it needs to be Giga-bytes(GB) not Mega-bytes(MB). Thanks! ;)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Winner of China's Got Talent Lui Wei

A few weeks ago I was introduced through the Internet to a very talented young Chinese man who had lost his arms in an electrocution accident.

The dream of becoming a concert pianist remained in spite of his physical challenge. There were individuals along his path that didn't believe he would be able to reach his goal and discouraged Lui Wei from reaching for his star.

I am so happy that Lui Wei wouldn't take the naysayers seriously, that he continued to believe in himself, working hard to move forward. He has become an inspiration to many.

Following is the video of Mr. Wei's final performance in winning the overall competition for China's Got Talent...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Reptile and Amphibians at Timber Life

Blue Speckled Salamander
The past season  provided some good weather for our reptile and amphibian populations at Timber Life.

While working outside Sunday, our dog Sadie alerted us to a presence in the pit surrounding our soon to be earth bermed home. The soil has been slow to dry after the huge amounts of rain received throughout the summer.

This little fellow was one of two sightings these past couple weeks that don't happen on a regular basis. I heard that our oldest Granddaughter did happen to find one in their small town yard six miles to the west of us yesterday as well. I can only think that the recent temperature cool down has them looking for spaces to get prepared for hibernation. Our sandy soiled location here in the country is a great place for burrowing.

It appears these salamanders are at the southwestern edge of their normal range here in central Iowa. Some concern about their future has been expressed due to enviromental issues.
Western Painted Turtle

Two teeth like projections
Brightly colored carapace characteristic of  Western Painted Turtles
A reptile species that is common in a wide range throughout the United States stopped to visit; moving from one moisture laden vicinity to another. It too found it's way into the shaded pit surrounding our construction...When I first saw it, it was between our current home, and the corner of the drop off. I came back to find it to snap some pictures of the underside, to verify which species of Painted Turtle I had crawling through the yard. The turtle had made good progress, making it to the mud before I found it again .

Cope's Gray Tree Frog
The  Cope's Gray Tree Frog seems to enjoy adhering to house surfaces from dusk into the night looking for an evening meal. There are two color variations for the frog, true gray and green over gray.

Hubby even found one clinging to the  roofing felt as we were preparing to apply our metal roofing one morning.

The frog not wanting to share the space leaped to the ground. Being on the ground I placed it into the tall
 grass for it to catch it's breath and move to a better situation.
At the moment the interior of our wood foundation home is perfect for toad habitation with river rock and damp conditions where the ground hasn't been totally covered.

Throughout the summer we have  gathered up various sized American toads and placed them outside to find another natural setting to become home .

We saw an increase in little green snakes and the Leopard Frogs. The frogs seemed to be wherever you would walk in the yard, in the garden, or puddles in the drive. I was almost afraid to step anywhere in case I might accidentally squash an innocent in hiding.

I am confident there were other reptiles and amphibians at TimberLife,
but these are the ones that crossed our path this year.The snakes,frogs and toads were hard to avoid becoming noticeable by their numbers.

The weather has become dryer and Fall has arrived - time to bid our summertime visitors farewell, and look forward to their return next Spring...

Happy Magic Marker Art

Artist - 6 year old Granddaughter Alexa

What a sweet way to make a Grandma smile when she goes to get the mail today and finds a colorful piece of artwork.

Thank you Alexa...I love it! ;)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Losing Their Spots

The twins are becoming "Spotless"

We have been blessed by another visit , it is fun to see  what has been lurking just off the beaten path. There have been brief moments of exposure when the  babies became anxious due to thunderstorms or home invasion by the humankind. They would come sprinting pell-mell out from cover only to dart back to hide again. So, when the twins came meandering out in front of their mother it was time to take notice and digitally record the event for future reference.

The far fawn appears to have some antler buds and his color brings back memories of previous generations. Forefront fawn was on the move having a nibble of grass-the camera caught a candid moment with it's tongue sticking out.
Mom is getting her Fall color

Little fawn went to nudge his mother; mom moved so what appeared to be an attempt to nurse didn't happen.

I am truly impressed at the physical rebound the deer have made with the plentiful Summer grazing. Our winters have been brutal and nutritionally challenging the last couple of years. I will have to keep my eyes open for  smaller fawns too.  In the last couple years that there has been at least one extremely little fawn seen going into Fall and Winter. Certainly a wonder that it would be able to survive ,but I have watched them toddle along with the group, and found their hoof prints while out prowling around myself.

Sadie Sioux wasn't being hospitable, not wanting to share her space so she put that deer family on alert from her window post inside the house. It didn't take long for them to get the hint even though they weren't threatened directly.

In the evening I took my faithful shotgun rider to do some scouting and found a mature doe enjoying the bean field smorgasbord along a fence/treeline. You might be able to vaguely see the whitetail on alert headed in the opposite direction. ;)
My four pawed friend gets really excited when she sees Mom grabbing the camera - heading out the door in a hurry.She charges out in front alerting everything in our path.I can see right now that I will need to sneak off on my own to get any discreet deer sleuthing accomplished and teach Sadie to lower her voice in the presence of wildlife.

Good luck to all on your pre-season deer scouting...

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Deer Food Plots

Last Summer I planted some sample Deer Plot seeds from the Whitetail Institute of North America.

I prepared my little 10'x10' plots by tilling, adding fertilizer and some quick acting lime since I had already waited one season to get the work done. Talk about anxious to see what they would bring...

The rain had been sparse so the weed populations I wanted to eliminate didn't sprout before planting.They waited until this year 2010, after all the snow and almost non-stop rain to make their appearance. I will have some work to do getting things back in shape, but even with everything not being pristine I have seen the aftermath of grazing. Daytime activity has been limited to mature Does and their fawns; the cover of nighttime allows for a buck or two to visit. The only evidence I've seen of the buck activity is the hoof /dew claw imprints left in the mud.

The pictures posted here were taken September 24th,2009, unless otherwise noted - plants were two months old. A healthy growth after getting some moisture.

 Imperial"Double Cross"

Imperial"Chickory Plus"
Imperial"Clover"  August 31,2009 a month old
Imperial "Chic Magnet"
During the planting stage I placed a 5' tomato cage with 6" openings in the center of my plots monitoring growth compared to feeding activity. In the late Fall the cage in the Chic Magnet plot ended up pulled out and smashed. I can only imagine that it caught a buck's antlers who was after the tender growth in the middle. It didn't really dawn on me until I was taking a walk into the timber via the food plots last winter and saw it laying on the ground covered by snow.
Imperial "Extreme"
Imperial"Alpha Rack Plus"
Imperial "Winter Greens"
Imperial"No Plow"

The No Plow wasn't planted until September 24th, 2009, it didn't have a chance to sprout. I didn't pursue another planting, instead I am grooming the space for a mineral lick using The Original Deer Cane Liquid Ready-To-Use. It has been down for at least a month and no evidence of use has been seen. It has received a lot of rain. Timing may certainly be a consideration in the need for supplementation according to information I located at the Quality Deer Management Association. I am going to wait until next Spring to add anymore supplements, but with the traffic patterns changing due to the  the seasons, they might find it and come back in the future.

I must apologize to Ben G., one year since his comment postings. I was having some pretty long days at the time , my cognitive reasoning was impaired and I removed them from my post. In an attempt to make things right I have kept his second comment to re-post with my update.

Ben G. has left a new comment on your post "My Deer Food Plots are Growing":

This sounds like quite the experiment. I would be curious to see how a plain old alfalfa plot would compare to one of your packets. Any way I look forward to the results.
I'm trying to convince a buddy of mine to do a food plot on his land.
Maybe your results will sway him to plant a plot or two.

So, Ben, were you able to get your buddy to put a food plot on his land?

In summary I would like to increase the areas for food plots. At this point I can see the advantages of having all these that I have planted. However, when I groom my first larger area I believe I will be going with Alpha Rack Plus not far from the mineral lick location...

This is a consumer review of the Whitetail Institute and Deer Cane Products. I will not be receiving any monetary reward for expressing my opinions.

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...

Friday, July 30, 2010

Crop Dusters Aloft

We are all seeing these planes in one form or another darting  through spaces that you wouldn't think a pilot with his right mind would want to try.

Hubby and I were outside on this hot,humid, afternoon working on the house we are building.The above pictured  plane kept flying over to the fields just past the north pasture. We got strong whiffs of the chemical being used as he flew over. The heavy air held the residue and allowed  it to fall as he passed overhead.

I don't envy these guys their jobs because of the long , hot hours they fly, or the volatile chemicals they carry onboard .

In the time I have been working on this post two  Crop Dusting mishaps were reported on the Eastern side of our state. The good news being neither pilot suffered serious injury even though their machines were lost in the accidents.

Our airspace often hosts the Crop Dusters as they pass on the way to their next job because of  Hubby's windsock at our home grass strip, they check for wind speed and direction. Yes, and because we live in the middle of farm country...; )

Monday, July 26, 2010

Martin Jaguar Takedown Bow

The last few years I have been reading about some exciting  experiences of those using Bows to hunt.

It  sure does spark a desire to  give another weapon other than my Remington 870 Youth Express 20 gauge shotgun a try.

I have been previewing different types of bows, compound, recurve and longbows. My choice was to go with the Martin Jaguar Takedown Recurve, after spending over a year in contemplation. The plan is to work on moving to a compound bow in the future; having experiences with all types of weaponry is the ultimate goal.

                                               Reasons I decided on the Martin Jaguar Takedown  -

  1. Portabilty with easy disassembly
  2. Brand name recognition

Kit contents and description :
  • Laminated wood and glass limbs for a smooth draw
  • Limbs remove from riser for easy transport
  • Durable riser
  • 7" brace height
  • 60" AMO length
  • Includes Armguard, tab, stringer, 3 carbon arrows, arrow rest and carry case.
  • Right hand only. Weighs 2 lbs., 11 ozs.
I decided to try the Amazon Link...Little did I know until clicking on it that the supplier fulfilling the request would end up being The Sportsman's Guide. Which was quite alright with me since it had been one of the places I had been shopping in my online searches.

Placing my order on a Sunday, they fulfilled it on Tuesday, and I had it by Wednesday. The bow kit was sent from a distribution location in St. Paul,MN. and I live in central Iowa. I am pleased with the swift service.

I have yet to get it out to give it a try,however, it is together and I do have some practice arrows that were included in the kit.

The only problem I found when the kit arrived was that the riser was not secured in the case, moving around loose, scuffing the limbs, but not hurting them significantly.

In my quest to have a few more arrows to try out, I headed over to E-bay and won 6 Used - Easton  Super Slam!, XX78 SupeLite  USA 2413 from a Michigan seller. The arrows are in very good used condition and the shipping once again was very timely.

My broadhead collection is starting with the Muzzy three blade. I have heard good things about several brands and will be investing in some others to find the right one(s) for my set-up
Until I can get a target, I will use some big round hay bales, that is until they get moved for storage elsewhere.

Off to try something new...;)

Disclaimer- I am an Amazon Affiliate. Should you decide  to purchase items from the links it would benefit me. A note to mention , affiliates are able to purchase from their own links, and receive a percentage of sales in return. Thanks!