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Cotonwood Tree Amoung the Largest?

The older we get the more we cherish our memories and want to share them with anyone who we think might be interested. I for one am very interested in others childhood stories especially generations older than myself. Right now there are actually some of them left.

            Whether my parents just happened to live at the right place or God’s will I don’t question but where I grew up I couldn’t have loved more. Put this country girl/tomboy on a cattle ranch situated in a wide valley; divided in half by a rambling river only a stones throw from her upstairs bedroom window and you have made her one happy girl. Give her a red and white paint horse named Dixie to ride anytime she wanted and permission to ride anywhere she wanted and she was in heaven.

            This spring I was able to go back to that little spot of heaven for a visit, although time has taken it’s toll some things stay the same. A friend and I took a trip back in time as we toured the place where I spent my childhood. When we topped the hill of ‘my’ valley, my heart started beating just a little faster and as we started down the hill and the river came in view I audibly sighed. One really can go home again after all. Oh, I admit it’s not the same but those heartstrings still felt a tug.

Cottonwood Tree with 21 foot circumference

            One of the main things I wanted to check out was a cottonwood tree that as a child was the biggest tree I ever saw. Well, it’s still the biggest Cottonwood tree I’ve ever seen. At the base it measures 21 plus feet and five feet up it measures 19 feet around. That’s me holding the measuring tape. My Mother, two sisters and myself tried one time and could not reach around it.


            The local Girl Scouts used to have their campouts just across the fence from the tree and every year we used to see how many of us it took to reach around the tree. 

            It wasn’t just my family that loved that tree. The ranch was located 1 ¼ miles from Mullen, NE and the river was a source of entertainment for many of the town folks. People floated the river; fished for trout and just simply enjoyed its beauty my tree being part of it.

ZERO Welfare in Your County?

NOW HEAR THIS!!! NOW HEAR THIS!!! Your County, USA has ZERO Welfare and ZERO Unemployment. Wouldn’t that be the greatest headline! It certainly is something to aim for isn’t it? Just think of the pride you would have to be the first county to attain such a goal. Your county could be a model for your whole state and mine. For that matter a model for the whole country! This is a nation wide problem but the solution has to start somewhere. There has to be a better system than our current one; ideas need to be shared to come up with the right solution, here is one possibility I feel could work. When applying for welfare or unemployment why not give the person INSTANT EMPLOYMENT. They would still get their needed money but along with that pay they would get a job and personal pride. Pride that they are earning their money. When they sign up for unemployment they would be assigned to the county, city or state for a 40-hour a week job. If they want the money let them work for it, they work 8 hours they get paid for 8 hours they work 40 hours they get paid for 40 hours. The money would come from the welfare and unemployment office. The more they work the more they get paid and the more pride they take in them selves. Sounds simple doesn’t it; it is when you think about it. Many families have been on “hand me down welfare” for generations. They think that is the normal way of life. Somewhere that needs to stop. You can be the one to stop the hand me down welfare and or unemployment that has plagued many families for generations and instill pride back in these Americans. Single parent families- how can a single parent on welfare with no job teach their children to be a proud person? To take responsibility of their lives. Lets help that child gain that pride and responsibility by helping his or her parent gain pride and responsibility in them selves. Lets help them find a job instead of rewarding them for not working. When parents are asked to visit school and share their occupation and it comes to that child whose parent is on welfare and unemployed how do you suppose he or she feels. Where is the pride in that? What if that child could say my dad or mom just got a job or bought a car instead of hiding behind the son or daughter of their friends too embarrassed to be called on. If you want to grow corn you first have to plant that seed. You water and nurture that seed into healthy stalks that produce more seed. In turn that seed repeats the process, but it can’t without your help. You let that kernel lay there and it does nothing. It is the same with our welfare and unemployment system. The systems were grown and then put on the shelf to take care of them selves. They simple don’t meet today’s demands. They aren’t working to the success that they were supposed to. Through the years the  seed corn has been improved over and over to better meet our demands. We need to rework the welfare and unemployment systems to better meet the demands of our people. The New Orleans hurricane disaster is a perfect example of hand me down welfare and unemployment. Family after family had known no other way of life. After the hurricane thousands were relocated; they took their hand me down way of life with them. What if they could have taken PRIDE with them in the form of a trade or skill. Think of the asset they would have been to those states that took them in. Instead they took with them welfare and unemployment that could have been avoided. It is estimated that the crime rate doubled in these areas after they were saturated with people with too much time on their hands and nothing constructive to do. People that could have been assets if only they could have been given “instant” jobs. This could be the greatest tax refund our country has ever seen. A refund of pride for all those effected. Pride in ones self, their family and their country. A benefit of this kind would benefit every single person of the United States. Everyone knows how good it makes them feel to help others, this change in your county should be contagious and a great thing to pass on to all the counties of your state and all the states of the United States. Who knows how far it could go? We need to start somewhere, why not your county and mine? As I said this is one idea, maybe you have a better one, we have to make some changes and someone has to have the idea to get the ball rolling.

I realize there are those who need financial help but there are better ways to help than welfare.  That is my opinion!

To Kill An American

 To Kill An American

You probably missed this in the rush of news, but there was actually a report that someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper, an offer of a reward to anyone who killed an American, any American.

 So an Australian dentist wrote an editorial the following day to let everyone know what an American is. So they would know when they found one. (Good one, mate!!!!) ‘An American is English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German, Spanish, Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican, African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or Arab, or Pakistani or Afghan. An American may also be a Comanche, Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navaho, Apache, Seminole or one of the many other tribes known as native Americans. An American is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim.

In fact, there are more Muslims in America than in Afghanistan. The only difference is that in America they are free to worship as each of them chooses. An American is also free to believe in no religion. For that he will answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government and for God.

 An American lives in the most prosperous land in the history of the world. The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of Independence, which recognizes the God given right of each person to the pursuit of happiness. An American is generous. Americans have helped out just about every other nation in the world in their time of need, never asking a thing in return. When Afghanistan was over-run by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their country! As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other nation to the poor in Afghanistan Americans welcome the best of everything…the best products, the best books, the best music, the best food, the best services. But they also welcome the least. The national symbol of America, The Statue of Liberty, welcomes your tired and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless, tempest tossed.

These in fact are the people who built America. Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11, 2001 earning a better life for their families. It’s been told that the World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 different countries, cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the terrorists. So you can try to kill an American if you must. Hitler did. So did General Tojo, and Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung, and other bloodthirsty tyrants in the world. But, in doing so you would just be killing yourself because Americans are not a particular people from a particular place. They are the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that spirit, everywhere, is an American.

With my heartfelt thanks I pass these words on for you all to enjoy as I did. Thanks Mate!!!

Update on the Cold Frame Plants

One Day's Bounty 2009

Today was a work the cold frame day, the squash were pushing on the lid wanting out so they got planted, one in the garden and one in a big pot in front of the garage. That is my insurance plant, against one husband that tends to run over plants he see’s no earthly reason for, such as squash, rhubarb, asparagus or flowers of any kind. Now tomatoes, cucumbers and horseradish can take up 2/3 rds of the garden and that is fine but those other things are just a nuisance, something to have to till around. For the life of me I can’t figure out why it bothers him to watch me till around them! Being a woman I figure out how to get my way most of the time. Some of the cabbage and more volunteer giant sunflowers got planted also. We have had so much wind it isn’t going to help the garden any, but as long as we don’t get a late frost they should make it. Can you taste the radishes yet, we had our first taste yesterday. I planted some giants this year and couldn’t wait for them to get giant size so I picked some that were normal size and amazed the neighbors, what they don’t know won’t hurt them. Hey, it’s one more notch in that gardener of the year award. The tomatoes are finely coming on. Everything else is growing great and will get transplanted next weekend most likely. Then later this summer I will plant carrots and parsnips in the cold frame for a winter crop. I haven’t tried that before so we will see how that turns out. Any ideas or suggestions out there?

Shopping 101 – saving where I can~~~

With the uncertain times we are all facing now it is even more important to save where we can. It is hard sometimes to tell myself to hold off on purchasing something I really want and distinguishing a want from a need; this is what I have come up with. I divide my list in two sections, my wants and my needs. If I have saved some money I feel I can spend on wants I put it in an envelope in my dresser and when I go shopping I put that envelope in my purse in case one of my wants is on a really good sale. This way I don’t feel guilty purchasing something special once in a while.

I also carry my coupons in my purse and before I go shopping I go through my coupons, if I have one to match something on my list I make a C by that item to remind myself I have that coupon. When I put that item in my cart I get out that coupon and put it with my money so I don’t forget to use it. I also cross off items I have found, it saves me time looking over my whole list to see what I still need to purchase.

Competing stores often try to out do each other and that means money in our pockets; don’t forget to ask if the store will honor a competitor’s coupon. Wal-Mart honors all other stores coupons, which has saved me many dollars several times.

If I have several stops to make I plan out my route to save time and gas. The first thing I do is check the papers for the sales and coupons. Will it pay to drive to another store to save a few pennies? Not unless they have some of the other items I need or coupons that will pay off at another stop. Most times it doesn’t pay to make too many stops.

The important thing for me is to keep the wants separate from the needs.

If you have ideas on how you save shopping please share them by commenting.  Thanks!