Link to KansasPrairie.net

7/31/2010

436,733 HITS FOR JULY….

Filed under: prairie musings, MetaPro totals — Peg Britton @ 6:11 am

The number of hits to my blog were up from last month’s 386,806.  Average hits per month for the past 12 months have been 400,318. MetaPros Website Solutions in Wichita maintains my website and keeps all the stats.  I thank you for tuning in …

7/30/2010

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ALLY BRITTON…

Filed under: prairie musings, family — Peg Britton @ 6:43 am

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May you have another 56 healthy, happy years ahead of you.  Ringo and I send hugs and love…

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7/29/2010

DANCING IN THE HEAT…

Filed under: prairie musings, friends, Ellsworth, Tyler Britton USAF, Wilson, Barack Obama — Peg Britton @ 4:14 pm

The weather is making me “draggy”.  I’m listless about doing the laundry, picking up “stuff”, writing letters, cooking and other menial, but necessary,  every day chores.  The exception is paying bills;  I don’t dare put them off until a cooler day.

It was my intention to be very lazy this morning and watch Obama on the View.  I like to watch “the girls” occasionally, and made a point to do it this morning.  Wouldn’t you know.  The phone was ringing off the wall.  And just when Obama came on, Tyler called.  Well, you know what I wanted most with those two choices:  talk with my grandson.  We haven’t had a good visit in a very long time. I like hearing him weigh the various options he has in determining his education and goals in life.   He’s 21 and has his whole life ahead of him.  That’s one thing that is very noticeable about growing old…you cease to have a future.

Cathy May and her daughter, Chelsey, dropped by with a wonderful assortment of veggies out of their garden.  It didn’t take long for me to course chop a large tomato, small cucumber, half an onion, a small zucchini and a banana pepper into a bowl.  I sprinkled it with pepper and a little Italian dressing  and had a wonderful meal.  Cottage cheese is good under it all, but I was out.

Roger Novak called from Florida with his news for the day.  He laughed after reading the article in the INDY about the Kohls brothers building his grocery store where the INDY referred to him as  “Novack”.  He hasn’t been gone all that long, but as he said, one is quickly forgotten.

If you like documentaries, 108 degrees South is largely about a band of bliss seeking surfer/mountaineers and their trip to Patagonia.  I enjoyed it very much. Two exceptionally good movies, imo, are In Search of Beethoven and Independent Lens: Between the Folds.  And,there’s nothing not to like about My Life as a Dog.  It’s a gem about the often-confusing nature of childhood. A 12-year old boy is shipped off to live with his uncle for the summer and finds unexpected adventures with the help of the town’s warmhearted eccentrics. These experiences give him the strength to accept his life and eventually enjoy childhood.  If you are looking for some Netflix instant viewing movies, you can’t go wrong with these.

Wilson residents are becoming restless about having a new medical facility available to them.  Dr. Ron Whitmer’s clinic burned during the Opera House fire.  Dr. Dennis Kepka will be retiring soon and intends to use his building (which both doctors are now using) for a business venture he has planned following his retirement. A new facility needs to be built to house doctors and PAs who are currently very busy serving the Wilson area.  Wilson is a part of the Ellsworth County Medical Center operation so this issue needs to be addressed and solved quickly.

I don’t recall ever being less interested in a political campaign than the one now leading up to 2012.  I was going to vote early today after a dental appointment, but I wasn’t that inspired and will wait until next month.  I anticipate a very low turn out as I think voters are generally fed up with the political climate of the land.

Sometimes I wonder if there is anyone in this county who doesn’t have cancer.

Thanks for tuning in…

7/27/2010

HOMEMADE FOOD FOR RINGO …

Filed under: prairie musings, dogs — Peg Britton @ 4:20 pm

My friend, Sandra, told me of a mixture she makes to feed her dogs.  Today I put a large batch of it together knowing Ringo would love it.  Ringo is a hero, after all,  and deserves good rations.

I cooked a couple of chicken legs and thighs, discarded the bones and chopped the meat and skin. I’ve been told by my chicken authority friend that raw chicken is fine for dogs as his dogs eat whole raw chickens all the time.  The bones won’t hurt them, but once the chicken is cooked, the bones get brittle and hard …and they shatter… so it’s not wise to feed them to dogs.

I used the chicken broth and added to it the juice from a large can of Veg-All that I got for a buck at Dollar General.  I also added some additional water.  To the boiling  liquid, I added generic, cheap rice and cooked it until it was done.  The mixture was thick with all the liquid absorbed by the rice.  Then I put the chicken and veggies in with the rice and gave it a good stir.  It’s a pretty cheap mixture and should keep in the refrigerator for a week or so.

Ringo knew I was up to something so I mixed a large spoonful of it with his IAMS dog food.  He displayed his usual “toothy grin” in anticipation of food and licked his bowl clean.

Sandra said she also uses inexpensive cuts of pork roasts instead of the chicken.  Whatever is on sale works.  Green beans must be good for dogs as the Greyhound breeders in Abilene buy them by the gallon to feed their dogs.  If Ringo tires of the mixed veggies, I’ll switch to green beans as I know he likes them.

I’m going to start feeding Ringo two small portions a day so he won’t be begging for “cookies” all the time. Every time I, or anyone else, pass by the basket where his cookies reside, he starts doing all his tricks, spins and turns like a one-show circus act until you give in an he gets what he wants…a cookie.

Frank Reese, the turkey man, is making commercial dog food and will be marketing it frozen at Kreibel’s Market in McPherson. It will be a good thing.

Thanks for tuning in…

ICE CREAM DAYS…VISITORS…CZECH FEST…

Filed under: prairie musings, family, friends, Tyler Britton USAF, Wilson — Peg Britton @ 8:53 am

Ally has been on a roll with her six quart White Mountain ice cream freezer.  She’s made two batches of peach and one of  blueberry ice cream.  They are both delicious.

Yesterday was tasting day. My friend Karmi came from Great Bend to visit and Caleb dropped in while she was here.  They were the fresh peach official samplers and gave it a thumbs up.  After lunch, Ally stirred up a batch of blueberry ice cream.  I had one of those big boxes of blueberries from Sam’s which turned out to be the right amount.  She makes a custard with eggs sugar and half and half, chills that and adds heavy cream.  After the ice cream was churned, she folded in the frozen blueberries.  It was perfect.  We sampled it and gave it our approval.

She’s pondering what to make next.  I’m rooting for a mixture of fresh cherries, toasted pecans, pineapple and coconut chips.  And maybe pistachios. And bananas.  I like fruity-nutty ice cream.

Grandson Tyler is back in San Antonio and speaks very positively about his experiences in Afghanistan.  His job was that of a respiratory therapist on a CSTARS team transporting patients. He’ll be coming home on leave next month then will resume his work at a military hospital in San Antonio until the end of his four year tour.  Or do whatever the Air Force tells him to do.  He’s very okay with that.

Granddaughter Mackenzie has started working for Rockwell-Collins that does defense contract work.  She’s a computer engineer/mathematician and will be moving to Richardson where the business is located.

Everyone in the family seems to be on the move … and … I’m having trouble keeping track of zip codes.

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The Czech dancers are expecting a good audience to show off their talents.  Don’t forget the Czech Festival with its ice cream social, parade, kolaches, brats and kraut and all kinds of food and festivities starts Friday and runs through the weekend. Since it’s election time, the parade will be filled with candidates wanting your vote.  The Midland Hotel is going to be open, so you might want to stop by and say hello to Tom and Heddy Mahoney, the new owners. We wish them well.

Ally’s birthday is coming up and she has for many years celebrated it with friends in Colorado, one of whom shares the same birth date.  She’s  also playing golf with her nephew Drew on some challenging Rocky Mountain high courses.

Ringo and I continue to hang out where it is cool.  We’re being pretty lazy as the heat doesn’t inspire activity.  If you want to sample the ice cream, I know where it is.

Thanks for tuning in…

7/26/2010

IF YOU AREN’T REGISTERED TO VOTE, YOU NEED TO DO THAT TODAY…IT’S THE LAST DAY.

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 6:20 am

7/25/2010

LUCAS PRESENTS THE TEMPORAL MECHANICS UNION IN CONCERT…

Filed under: prairie musings, Area Sites — Peg Britton @ 4:14 pm

Something good is always happening in Lucas.  On July 31st a percussion ensemble from Wichita is performing.

The concert will be at Grassroots Art Center Courtyard at 8:00 p.m.

Temporal Mechanics Union is a percussion ensemble from the Wichita area that began performing at Cowley College. They do traditional rhythms, as well as experimental music. Many of their rhythms have folkloric background, such as African, Brazilian, Cuban and Native American.

Admission is by donation and all proceeds will be donated to the Bowl Plaza!

In case you aren’t familiar with the Bowl Plaza, here’s the scoop.  Lucas with all their tourism has never been able to provide the public with easy access public toilets.  With all there is to see and do in Lucas, it required a day of leg crossing to get by.

So, two doors down from Brant’s Meat Market there is a “Plaza” where they are going to build nifty toilets in the style of Lucas’s Grassroots Art.  They will be unique and worth a trip on their own.  There is irony in that.  The Kohler Company donated the top-of-the-line fixtures.  They are already in storage in Lucas…and now, they just need more money to build these unique stopover places.

Check this out for further details about all the neat things going on in Lucas…

Some of us are just hooked on Lucas.  I happen to be one of them.  The local volunteers have made something very, very unique out of a town that could be in the throes of death, but instead, is thriving.  Pay them a visit. Attend the concert, if you can.

Thanks for tuning in…

SFGATE

Filed under: print news — Peg Britton @ 11:06 am

I made the SFGate, home of the San Francisco Chronicle, top stories from around the web with the attention I brought to the Bill Koch story and the possibility of counterfeit wine as found in The New Yorker.

Pretty cool.

7/24/2010

CZECH FESTIVAL STARTS FRIDAY JULY 30TH…YOU’LL WANT TO BE THERE…

Filed under: prairie musings, Wilson — Peg Britton @ 9:10 am

MONDAY IS THE LAST DAY TO REGISTER TO VOTE…

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 9:10 am

If you have not registered to vote, please do it Monday…day after tomorrow.  You have an obligation to vote and be heard.

ELLSWORTH’S FARMERS’ MARKET…BUZZING WITH ACTIVITY

Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 8:37 am

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Nancy Stonebraker visits with the Katzenmeiers about worldly matters.

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Rich Vargo, the champion tomato grower, who along with almost everyone else who has a garden, has had to buy tomatoes as his haven’t ripened.  Caleb did have a bountiful supply so I’m set for the week.  My counter is loaded with beautiful tomatoes, the mainstay of every meal.

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There was ample produce to buy in addition to tomatoes…cucs, cabbage, melons galore, sweet corn, green beans, onions, potatoes.

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And there was a table of jewelry…

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Connie and Shonka had assorted jams and jellies, bierocks, angel food cakes, pineapple pie, cream puffs.   Shonka pulls out her homemade caramel pecan rolls and  muffins that she has every week at the market.

The market was very busy this morning.  It’s good to see such active participation on a Saturday morning in Ellsworth.

Thanks for tuning in…

7/23/2010

A CLUSTER OF BEARS WE DON’T OFTEN SEE HERE…

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 7:37 pm

Here’s a photo of a lovely family of bears.  And a warning to hikers…

STATE AG SECRETARY, JOSH SVATY, SIGNS QUARANTINE FOR DEADLY BLACK WALNUT DISEASE…

Filed under: political musings, Kansas — Peg Britton @ 3:04 pm

Kansas Taking Stand Between Tree-killing Disease, Eastern U.S. Walnuts
Friday, July 23, 2010 :: Staff infoZine

Its location has now placed Kansas in a position of both risk and responsibility for a natural resource.

Manhattan, KS - infoZine - As one result, Kansas Secretary of Agriculture Josh Svaty signed a state quarantine this week. Its purpose is to deny entry to a new and deadly black walnut disease – one that already has spread into every state west of Kansas except for Nevada, Montana and Wyoming.

“We didn’t even have a name for it two years ago. But, Thousand (1,000) Cankers disease has killed more than 2,000 black walnut trees in Denver alone. Boulder and Colorado Springs basically don’t have walnuts anymore,” said Bob Atchison, rural forestry coordinator with the Kansas Forest Service (KFS).

For the rest of the story…

7/22/2010

TRACEY MANN IS A “BIRTHER”…ENDORSEMENT WITHDRAWN

Filed under: political musings, print news — Peg Britton @ 8:59 pm

U.S. House
News withdraws endorsement of Tracey Mann for ‘birther’ views
The Hutchinson News’ editorial board struggled some to endorse a candidate in the crowded Republican primary for Kansas’ 1st District U.S. House seat, in which all six candidates sound mostly the same. But in an endorsement published in Sunday’s editions, we settled on Salinan Tracey Mann as the best pick, saying he “at least shows the ability to be reasonable and straightforward with voters.”

We were wrong. And we withdraw that endorsement.

Quite simply, the reason is that it turns out Mann is what is known as a birther. He questions the citizenship of President Barack Obama despite evidence that is irrefutable to most objective, rational people - including a birth certificate released by the Hawaii secretary of state and birth announcements printed in Honolulu’s two major newspapers.

That this even continues as an issue is appalling, which is why we didn’t think to pose the question to Mann or any of the other candidates.

But Mann said on a Salina radio program Tuesday that he thinks the president “needs to come forth with his papers and show everyone that he is an American citizen.” He also made similar comments, unbeknownst to our editorial board, at a June 21 forum at Elkhart.

Whether Mann truly doubts the president’s citizenship or is just saying so in another effort to appeal to the far-right extremists of his party and get elected we don’t know. Either way, it is unflattering and doesn’t demonstrate the kind of intellect we want representing us in Congress.

We leave it to the good judgment, as always, of voters to make their choice on Election Day. The other candidates are as follows: Jim Barnett, a doctor and state senator from Emporia; Sue Boldra, a political science educator from Hays; Marck Cobb, an attorney from Galva; Tim Huelskamp, a farmer and state senator from Fowler; and Rob Wasinger, a former political staffer from Cottonwood Falls. We do not recommend a vote for Tracey Mann in this race.

HOW THE BRITISH PETROLEUM RELIEF WELL WORKS…

Filed under: energy, political musings — Peg Britton @ 6:01 pm

If you want to know how the BP relief well works, take a look at this.

There is tropical trouble for BP.

CORPSE FLOWER LOIS IS STARTING TO BLOOM…

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 12:06 pm

I posted a story about the corpse flower on 7/13/2010 AMORPHOPHALLUS TITANUM …. OR CORPSE FLOWER.

Lois was expected to bloom over a week ago and handlers were getting worried she wasn’t going to bloom.  They cut a hole in her and attached a bag of rotting fruit to speed up the process.

Lois is finally starting to do her thing.  You can follow it here  and also here on Face Book.  My reader-friend, Adrienne, sent me the link.

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7/21/2010

ELLSWORTH COUNTY 4-H FAIR ENTRIES…

Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 2:19 pm

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Largest sunflower head to be entered in the judging contest …

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… give the rabbit a good neck massage, then judge it…

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Did we win? Did we? Did we? Yes, we did!

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Boar goat…the kind Ally wants to raise.

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Dan Kruse…looks over the stock…

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Pigs are pink and clean after a good scrubbing.  I think they are the kind that fly.

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Claudia Hochman’s blue ribbon okra.  All the same size and picture perfect. A true winner. Claudia won 4 blues, 3 reds, 2 whites and the two “biggest”. She does know how to feed her family.

BACK ON LINE…

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 8:41 am

My internet connection and cable went kaput last night, about 12 hours ago, and just came back on.

What was amazing about last night was the electrical storm that seemed continuous to me, nothing like I’ve seen for a long time. There was a steady stream of lightning and enormous claps of thunder.  Had the power been off, it wouldn’t have mattered as I could see clearly all the time anyway just from the effects of the bright flashing lights outside.  I loved it.

Poor Ringo was distraught.  I put his bed in a closet and shielded him with a high overstuffed chair so he could hide from the storm.  I need blinders for him at such times. Or, better yet, he needs an ATO box to sleep in.

Ally had 2″ of rain at her farmette. We’ve had .85″ since midnight and there were strong downfalls before midnight. It was welcome.  We’ve had 3.2″ for the month. Flood warnings are in place for Ellsworth County for awhile this morning.  And there may be more rain to come.

Thanks for tuning in…

7/20/2010

SENATORS BROWNBACK AND ROBERTS VOTED AGAINST THE JOBS BILL. THAT’S NO SURPRISE. THEY HAVE VOTED “NO” ON EVERYTHING…

Filed under: political musings, Sam Brownback — Peg Britton @ 8:07 pm

Forty Senators who have jobs, voted against extending unemployment benefits for the most needy of our citizens.  This bill would put money in the hands of those who need it most and who will put it back into the economy quickly.

All Republicans and Nebraska Dem. Ben Nelson have opposed every mention of a jobs bill.  The only exceptions are Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins.

After six weeks of failure and delay, the Senate this afternoon finally voted to end a Republican filibuster of the unemployment insurance extension bill, allowing it to move forward towards final passage and becoming law. The Senate still has to take one more vote on the bill, but the motion they passed this afternoon was the big hurdle that, until now, they had been unable to overcome. The bill is now virtually guaranteed to be signed into law this week.

Sen. Carte Goodwin [D, WV], West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin’s pick for replacing the late Sen. Robert Byrd [D, WV], was sworn-in just moments before the Senate voted on the motion to end the Republican filibuster, and he provided Democrats with the 60th vote they needed to pass it. One Democrat, Sen. Ben Nelson [D, NE], voted with Republicans against the motion, and two Republicans, Sen. Susan Collins [R, ME] and Sen. Olympia Snowe [R, ME], crossed the aisle to vote with the Democrats.

The rest of the Republicans voted against the bill.  That would include Sen. Sam Brownback and Sen. Pat Roberts…both from Kansas.  They both have jobs … good jobs … but have no qualms about not helping those who need jobs the most. Both of these men are out of touch with reality.

Remember that when you go to the polls. I think it would benefit the country if both Brownback and Roberts had to scramble like others to find a non-government job, one without all the benefits and perks they have created for themselves.

Thanks for tuning in…

TEA PARTY: WHERE WERE YOU DURING THE BUSH YEARS?

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 6:45 pm

I love diversity and multiformity, but I expect there to be a common thread of decency and fairness woven through it all. I love learning from others about what they know and I don’t, which is almost everything.  I like to be surrounded by curious, inquisitive friends who want to know the “why” of world.  Some people are just confusing.

The Tea Party folk just confound me.  They don’t want any government control, but what do they want in its place? They want tax cuts for the rich which recent history shows just plummeted us into a financial black hole. They say they aren’t racist, but it seems undeniable that they are. They tear apart the Constitution, but they seem to lack any knowledge of the historical or intellectual interpretation of it.

Were the Tea Party folk active during the George Bush administration and I didn’t notice?  Did anyone talk about the Tea Party movement before Obama was elected?

The Bushies wanted limited government and reduced government spending, but they did a very poor job with both.  They expanded government and increased spending by extending benefits to the rich and corporations and they borrowed, borrowed, and borrowed us into endless debt.  They seem to overlook that now.

Did people not notice the swelling of the government and the excessive spending of government under Bush?

If the Tea Party folk were quiet during the Bush administration, when a white president was in office, and now are very vocal when a black president is in office, it makes one very skeptical about their denial of racism.

If they aren’t racist, then don’t you think they need to answer this question:  Where were you during the Bush years?

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