Ottertail Country

Ottertail Country
Ottertail South

February 23, 2009

Still February....


Well, it was looking pretty good outside... til that last snowstorm!! I guess the clays will have to wait, even though I'm on schedule for pheasant hunting this weekend. We'll see how that goes.

Oh, yeah, this must mean a birthday. This is the main dish at children's birthday parties, so.....

Food's all ready, table set, watching out the window....

Here she is!! This is unusual, because for as many years as I can remember, we have been having Rose's and Bryn's birthdays celebrations on the same day, midway between their birthdays. Don't worry, Bryn, we can have a repeat when you are able to get up here......

We also cut down on cake size.... to cupcakes! They were O.K. with a little ice cream to go with them.

Hey, I finally got my renewed passport, in the form of the new 'card'. It works on land to Canada and Mexico and by water to the Caribbean. If I ever need to travel anywhere by air, I'll have to do another renewal and get the book as well. Not likely.....


You want this??



I have added a few of your names to a list of people to receive notification of comments posted on this blog. It's nice to know when someone posts a comment on an older post, and this let's you know. If you have been a regular 'commenter' in the past, you may receive a message from:

(or some name if registered),

and the subject will be:

[Ottertail Country] New comment on ((name of post here))?.

The comment is then displayed in the email body.

If you don't want to be included in this, simply give me an email and I'll remove you from the list..... no problem.

New post soon, I hope.



February 15, 2009

Be my Valentine?


Last Friday I got a call from the front desk that someone wanted to see me, can I please come down? That sounded weird, but I went anyway and found this. Someone (also know as Peggy) had bought a half dozen new arrows, taken them to the florists and arranged to have them make a 'bouquet' out of them. Then each had a carnation in the top end, and there was a little cupid type bear holding onto the arrows. A fabulous Valentines gift from my sweetheart!! Today I remembered another famous Valentines day that was not so pleasant...

Saturday we went to Rapids to attend the annual wild game feed put on by a local historic group in the Nekoosa area. We attend every year as we used to go to their "Point Basse History Days" event in early June each year. We met up with Chris, Ashley and Hailee at the supper and then we went to their house afterward.

By the time we got back to their place, Hailee was asleep for the day! So we visited with Chris and Ashley for a while and settled in for the night. Sunday morning we all headed out to a local restaurant and had breakfast. Hailee sure does like pancakes!

Back at home, there was plenty of 'horse back' riding, and Hailee had a good handle to hang onto.

We watched an interesting show on WPT this evening. Told about the annual Tundra Swan migration that always makes a stop along the Mississippi, most notably near Alma, Wi. They also talked about having an unusually large number of gray owls in Douglas County. And have you heard of this trail? Hey, Bob, I know this is a little north of you, but do you ever see these birds in your area? These Swans stop along the river for a while, then they head to Chesapeake Bay for the winter.....

March Madness? Give me a break!! That ridiculous hoopla over some kids playing basketball gets on my nerves more each year. Here is the music community's answer to those blasted college basketball tournaments... Last year I happened across this event and will watch it again this year. Some incredible performances by some young folks.

I still get the occasional cartoon (I call them 'blasphemy') from people who know I used to play the bagpipes a little.

People also send me all sorts of airplane related stuff as well. This was the latest from Jabe, at work. 'Cmon, dude, I know you read this, how bout a comment??????

I gotta go, Carlo


February 10, 2009

Just some junk....


Ongoing saga of 'the doors'. Peggy agreed to do some repair on the zipper that holds the removable panel in the frame. Here she is tuning up the sewing machine.

A little stitching along the edges and it's ready to go.

About 1.25 rows of wood left. That means if the weather stays a little on the warm side, that third row should last until Feb 20th, or so. And if things warm up a little in March, we should be good to for the year!!

Last Sunday the weather was really nice. But by the time it warmed up enough to temp me to go flying, it also became quite windy. So I spent some time working on a trap set-up.

I got this thing temporarily hooked to the deck and we tried it out a little. For some reason two of the six birds we fired out there, two broke into bits on their own......

I cleanly missed one of the others and got the others. Lucky, I guess.

Next I set about giving the grill a once-over. Took out the grates and the vaporizer plate, cleaned out the inside, brushed the grates. Decided to coat the grates with some 'grill strength Pam' and fired it up.

Peg had taken out a couple of small tenderloins and a couple of chicken fillets with spice. We cooked them up, ate the tenders and saved the chicken for lunch on Monday.

The weather this week has been pretty weird. Temps in the 40's, rain, wind and glare ice side roads. Not sure that normal February weather wouldn't be better????

Recently a couple of people have spilled the beans about actually reading this blog. I could hardly believe it, as there have not been any "COMMENTS" by these readers! I just want to say once again that the comment process is less painful than an email. Type the comment, sign it, select "Anonymous" and you're good to go. Give it a shot, 'nkay?

I gotta go, Carlo


February 8, 2009

February already?????


I really have a hard time getting good aerial photos in the winter because of the billions of scuffs and scratches on the plastic panels in my airplane's zip-out doors. I recently found some of the correct thickness of polycarbonate sheeting, so I bought a piece and set about making some replacement panels for the doors. As you can see, one of the zippers had come apart at the starting point and I could not get it back past there.

So I un-snapped and un-Velcroed the entire cloth frame and brought it home. One it was laid out on the table and I was no longer shivering with cold, I was able to get the zipper back to start and it seems to be O.K.
I think the problem was that when I last put it in, I didn't have the small end fully engaged and it was able to come apart.

Anyway, I have one door fixed with new plastic! I have not yet pulled the paper off the plastic to see how clear it will be. The stuff is coated with a super-cling layer of protective paper when it's new. Above you see the snaps and Velcro that hold the cloth door frame in place.

I received a phone call a day or two ago from my cousin, Bob, who lives between Mindoro and Mindoro Cut. If you have been through the cut on highway 108, you know what I'm talking about cause you could not miss this feature. Here is a good read about the cut. I did a search about Mindoro Cut and found this movie.

Here is the location, just northeast a bit of La Crosse, Wi. It's in the coulee region of southwest Wisconsin and the roads and scenery are awesome. Here's another movie with a different flavor...looks to be a Harley version.

If you looked at that first link, you saw a map and then a close-up contour map of the area around Mindoro. You probably noticed how the grid lines zig zagged all over the place. That got me to looking at the area on Google Earth, and I found this area across the river from La Crosse in Iowa. It looks like it may have been an early work of Escher??? Lots of curving ridges with farm land in the valleys. If you don't have Google Earth, go here to download it. It's easy to deal with, free, and great fun if you like looking at the world from above.
But I digress.... what would a trip to Mindoro Cut be without ride on a crotch rocket???? See it here....

I gotta go, the sun is out, it's supposed to be in the 30's today, maybe I'll get out into the wild blue yonder.... breakfast and dishes first, then we'll see what happens.

Cheers.... Carlo


February 1, 2009

Off to the big city...


We got our converter box last summer, so I thought I would try it out a week or so ago. I hooked it up, followed the directions for a scan and found 12 digital stations! 12.1, 12.2, 13.1, 13.2, 13.3, 20.1, 20.2, 20.3, 36.1, 36.2, 36.3, 39.1
However, there were no Wausau stations, so I turned the antennae toward the southeast, re-scanned and now there were 18. All the Wausau ones showed up except 55, the Fox station. I emailed them and found out that they were not broadcasting a digital signal until Feb 19. So I disconnected the box so we could still get 55 until Feb.
So far, so good.....

A few days ago, Ivan called to ask if the sky was super red down at the Ottertail. Sure enough, a blood red sky that my camera would not focus on properly, but you get the idea.

This morning I believe I created the perfect stack of cakes. Go ahead, prove me wrong.... I need to get Lucy's thin pancake recipe and try it out.

After breakfast I headed to Wausau. The sun was finally out and all the trees were frost covered out in the Timm's Hill area. Really quite a sight.

This view was kind of weird. Looking out across a swampy area to an abrupt hill covered with maple trees. I like it.

You really need to double click these to enlarge......

Anyway, soon I was parked in the lot behind Rosie's apartment. The temperature was in the mid 30's and felt really good after all that cold junk we had been having.

We both were in need of lunch, so we headed to Chang Garden on Scott street just east of the river. The place is run by a family from the far east, with all their family recipes and such. The food there is really good, much better than the buffet places. I had the Szechuan pork, a spicy and hot dish of pork strips, peas, carrot shavings, bean sprouts, water chestnuts and mushrooms in a dark sauce. I had some fried rice and soup (I forgot the name of it).

We went to Walgreen's to get me some photos for my passport renewal. I'm heading to Canada this summer and my passport is expired. They expire after 10 years, but you can still renew them until they are 15 years old. That's in 3 weeks for me.... anyway, we were looking around the store while we waited for the photos, and we found this dark chocolate "Infused with premium red chili" Sounds tasty, doesn't it????

Next, we headed out to Gander Mountain. I needed some clay birds, some target load 12Gauge cartridges and I wanted to determine the choke of a certain shotgun we have. Turns out it is a modified, so I got a full choke sleeve as well.

On the way back to Rosie's apartment, we stopped in at Malarky's Pub, on the square in the downtown area. Don't go there if you want a reasonably priced beverage, $8 for a glass of wine and $5 for a Guinness tap pint..... we left after finding that out!

So I came home with some new photos, a new shotgun choke and 4 boxes of cartridges. Oh, yeah, and a carton of clay birds. I need to shoot this gun a little before making a late February pheasant hunt to the Madison area. In any event, I will be a little more ready this year for the annual "first clay pigeon shoot of the year" at Peggy's brother's place on Easter.....