Saturday, July 22, 2017

Family at The Lake



As most parents are well aware, once the kids are grown, leave home, and often move hundreds of miles from the home place, it’s difficult to keep contacts. In 2002, my wife and I tried an experiment, based on what we had learned back in the 1970s when I taught a two-week writing workshop at the School of the Arts in Rhinelander. At that time, we rented a cabin on a lake near Rhinelander, and oh how the kids enjoyed it.

Our children, in 2002, now grown, married, and with their own kids, encouraged us to do that again, but this time to invite the entire extended family. And that’s what we’ve done every year since. This year we rented a place on Long Lake in the Waupaca Chain O’ Lakes. We had as many as 18 people sitting around the dinner table each evening. Kids, grandkids, and even two great grandkids.

They swam, water skied, kayaked, played cards, read books, chatted with each other, or sometimes just sat by themselves looking out across the lake. Ruth and I did as little as possible, leaving the cooking to the kids and grandkids.

We also have contests. This year the main contest was who could grow the best mustache in two weeks. There was a junior and a senior division. The winner received a razor and shaving cream.

The week is planned a year in advance, so everyone can adjust vacation and work schedules. It is extremely rare for anyone to miss the event. We are four generations together, sharing, laughing, kidding, and most of all getting to know each other just a little better.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Never forget; family comes first.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook Book” (with my daughter, Sue) is now available. It should be in the bookstores by now. See note below for upcoming launch at the Wild Rose Library.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: A couple of slots remain for my one-day writing workshop on writing your own story: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County. Call 920-854-4088.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK. July 26, snacks at 5:30, book talk at 6:00 p.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI.

Friday, August 4, 5:30 p.m., School of the Arts, Legacy Program. ArtStart, 68 S. Stevens Street, Rhinelander, WI. Keynote address.

Saturday, August 5, 1:00 p.m., Rhinelander Public Library, 106 N. Stevens Street, Rhinelander. Never Curse the Rain, talk and book signing.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Friday, July 14, 2017

A Daylilly Year


This is the year of the daylily. Those beautiful flowers that only bloom for one day, but what a show they put on during the day they bloom. The scientific name of daylily is Hemerocallis, which is quite a mouthful but becomes important in knowing, as guys like me sometimes have trouble telling one kind of lily from another.

There is a fellow in Wild Rose, my home town, who hybridizes daylilies, which means he creates new ones that are more winter hardy, more colorful, and have more blooms than some of the earlier types.

Oh, I forget to mention, this Wild Rose guy, happens to be my brother, Dr. Darrel Apps. Darrel has been developing daylilies for about as many years as I’ve been writing, and that’s a good long time. He is nationally and internationally known for his work as well.

When I am out on the stump giving talks, which I do probably more than I should, I often hear, “Are you any relation to Darrel Apps, the daylily guy.”

“I am,” I answer, and then the conversation swings around to daylilies a topic about which I am about 90 to 99 percent ignorant. The person goes on to applaud Darrel’s work.

I have several of Darrel’s daylilies, and they are putting on quite a show this summer. They thrive on lots of rain and hot weather. (See photo)

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Enjoy the summer of the daylily.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter), Sue is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores by now. See note below for upcoming launch at Wild Rose.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: A few slots remain for my one-day writing workshop on writing your own story: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, July 26, snacks at 5:30, book talk at 6:00 p.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI.

Friday, August 4, 5:30 p.m., School of the Arts, Legacy Program. ArtStart, 68 S. Stevens Street, Rhinelander, WI. Keynote address.

Saturday, August 5, 1:00 p.m., Rhinelander Public Library, 106 N. Stevens Street, Rhinelander. Never Curse the Rain, talk and book signing.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Rainy Days



It’s been raining at Roshara. Raining a lot. In June, raining more than fifteen inches in two weeks. A good thing for our sandy land. My little pine trees, especially those we planted this past spring are happy. So are the trees we planted last year and the year before. Little trees on sandy land like lots of rain.

Our prairie—see photo—is thriving. Grass is tall; wildflowers are everywhere. And in the deep woods, in my 50 acres or so of oaks and maples, I can’t see six feet off the trail as the woods are so thick with foliage.

My two ponds, with low water for a long time, are the highest they’ve been in ten years. But they still have a long way to go to match the high water years of the early 1990s.

And now to my garden. The potato crop has never been better at this time in the growing season. Anyone who knows anything about growing potatoes knows they like lots of water. Same for the cabbage, lettuce, and broccoli. The vine crops are another story—I’ve had to re-plant the cucumbers and squash that drowned out. And the beans, they are miserable with too much rain. Yellowish and struggling to live. And worst of all, the sweet corn. I’ve replanted some of it twice. Never before have I had to do this.

As many readers know, I’ve written a book with the title “Never Curse the Rain.”
“Are you sure about that?” one of my readers near Oshkosh recently wrote.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Some years are too wet, some years are too dry. But every year’s weather remains a mystery.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter), Sue is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores in a week or two. See notes below for upcoming launches of the book.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: A few slots remain for my one-day writing workshop on writing your own story: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, snacks at 5:30, book talk at 6:00 p.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI.
Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Monday, July 03, 2017

Storm Damage at Roshara


The windstorm that roared through central Wisconsin in mid-June caused more havoc at Roshara than I first assumed. It toppled the 105 year old black willow tree that fronted the windbreak that has protected our farmstead these many years. It crashed trees across our trails in many places. But these bits of destruction were the least of the damage wrought.

As many of those who read these weekly ramblings know, Roshara is my family’s 120 acre farm in Waushara County. Of those 120 acres, 100 acres are wooded. About 50 acres of mixed hardwood and another 50 of red and white pine, with a scattering of native jack pine and few intruder Scotch pine.

We’ve planted all of the red pine, some by machine, but lots by hand, beginning in 1966 and every year since. The white pines are an interesting story. Back in the 1930s, in the midst of the Great Depression, a devastating drought and windstorms attacked western Waushara County. John Coombes, who owned our farm then, did what many other farmers did. He planted a windbreak, which consisted of white pine trees. These beautiful white pines, now some 80 plus years old, have succeeded in producing about five acres of self-seeded white pines, in what was an old cornfield when we bought the place 50 years ago.

It is in this patch of 50-year-old white pines where the recent windstorm smashed off the tops of many trees, snapped off huge branches, and otherwise made a mess of things. Our forester is coming in this week to mark trees, these and others—a thinning is in order as well. And the loggers will follow shortly after to clean up the mess.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Remembering his farmer father’s words, “If it isn’t one thing, it’s another.” Meaning something unexpected is always happening on the farm.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter, Sue) is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores in a week or two. See notes below for upcoming launches of the book.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: A few slots remain for my one-day writing workshop on writing your own story: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, snacks at 5:30, book talk at 6:00 p.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, June 25, 2017

June 25 Garden Report


I suspect every garden year can be considered unusual and unexpected. This year, well I can’t remember another quite like it and I’ve been growing a garden for well over 50 years.

In our neck of woods in central Wisconsin, April and May were wet. On April 22 we planted potatoes, peas, lettuce, radishes, onions, carrots, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and sweet corn.

On Memorial Day weekend we set out tomato plants, planted zucchini, cucumbers, squash, pumpkins and more sweet corn.

Then we had a couple weeks of dry weather, no rain, and the garden struggled, and some of the vine crops did not come up.

The week of June 12 nature turned on the faucet and we had 8 ½ inches of rain, washing out some of the sweet corn, and leaving standing water on one end of the garden.

On June 16, we replanted sweet corn, squash, cucumbers and zucchini. And then it rained 4 ½ more inches before June 23.

Our sandy soil can take lots of rain, but 13 inches in less than two weeks??

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being outstanding, here is the report of the Roshara garden as of June 25, 2017: So far the only out and out failure has been the radishes. Apparently not their kind of weather.

--Potatoes-10
--Onions-10
--Lettuce-10
--Cabbage-10
--Brussels sprouts-10
--Broccoli- 9
--Carrots-8
--Tomatoes-8
--Snap beans-7
--Cucumbers-5
--Zucchini-5
--Peas-5
--Squash-5
--Pumpkins-5
--Sweet corn-3
--Radishes-0

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: It’s the mystery of gardening that keeps me in the garden.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter, Sue) is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores in a week or two. See notes below for upcoming launches of the book.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: A few slots remain for my one-day writing workshop on writing your own story: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, June 18, 2017

End Willow



We lost the end willow tree at Roshara this past week. It succumbed to the nearly eight inches of rain we had during the week and storms that knocked out our power for most of two days.

The Coombes family planted that old black willow tree in 1912, the first tree in a long row of them. The willow trees provided a windbreak from the summer storms and winter blasts for 105 years—they still do. But their leader, the first in line thus the title “end willow,” is now gone. A twisted mass of broken branches and fractured trunk.

During our early years at Roshara, our kids played in that old tree, climbed it, played games under it, saw it as a friend. For my first book, THE LAND STILL LIVES, I featured that old tree as a character in the book.

On Friday, my son, Steve—who had played in that old tree—and son-in-law Paul sawed up enough of the tree so we could use our driveway once more. (See Photo above.) But we decided to leave most of it where it fell. It seemed only fitting that in death it should remain where it had lived for more than a hundred years: protecting the farmstead, providing a place for kids to play, and leaving behind so many memories.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Remembering an old tree that has so many stories to tell.

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter), Sue is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores in a week or two. See notes below for upcoming launches of the book.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Sunday, June 11, 2017

What's Your Hurry?


This past week I began reading a book by Carl Honore, an Italian born author. His book: IN PRAISE OF SLOWNESS: CHALLENGING THE CULT OF SPEED got me thinking. Why are we in such a hurry? Driving faster, having ever-faster performing computers, writing quick little notes on Twitter or on Email. Rushing from here to there, as my late father would say, “Like chickens with our heads cut off.”

Honore wrote, “But now the time has come to challenge our obsession with doing everything more quickly. Speed is not always the best policy. Evolution works on the principle of survival of the fittest, not the fastest.”

As an octogenarian (I still have trouble spelling the word to say nothing about living with the designation), the aging process has forced me to slow down. To walk more slowly, to alas, think more slowly, to do almost everything more slowly.

A cheery note on this warm June Sunday morning. What I am doing because of necessity appears to be the right thing for everyone to do. Slow down. Take your time.

Hiking in my woodlot at Roshara, where the wild Geraniums grow (see photo above) is one way for me to do it.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: What’s your hurry?

SPECIAL NOTICE: My newest book, “Old Farm Country Cook book” (with my daughter, Sue) is just off the presses. It should be in the bookstores in a week or two. See notes below for upcoming launches of the book.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835









Sunday, June 04, 2017

Karner Blue Butterflies


Photo by Steve Apps

The Karner Blue Butterfly, no larger than a man’s thumbnail, is one of our most beautiful butterflies. And it is an endangered species. Without some careful loving care of their environment these little butterflies are on their way to becoming extinct.

We have Karner Blues at Roshara. Our farm is located in a band that stretches across central Wisconsin where the wild lupines grow—and where the Karner Blue Butterfly is found.

Usually the Karner Blue butterfly has two hatches a year. In April the first caterpillars hatch from eggs laid the previous year. Here is the catch. These little caterpillars feed only on lupine leaves. About mid-May, the Karner Blue caterpillar turns into a little cocoon-like chrysalis. And from this chrysalis emerges the adult butterfly by the end of May and into early June.

The adult butterflies mate, lay eggs in June on or near lupine plants, and hatch in a week or so with a new crop of caterpillars. And within about three weeks, by July, we see the summer’s second generation of Karner Blues. These adults lay eggs, which will not hatch until the following year.

Lupines like full sunshine, so to keep our lupine patch alive and well—and the population of our Karner Blue Butterflies growing, we are constantly removing brush and volunteer trees. Lupines thrive on sandy acidic soil. We have not planted a single lupine seed. We bought our farm 50 years ago and I noticed a small patch of the plants at that time. Today we have about three acres of lupines and each year the patch grows larger.

The Karner Blue Butterfly adult will feed on the nectar of several flowering plants. But, alas, the Karner Blue caterpillar only feeds on Lupine leaves. So—no Lupines, no Karner Blues.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Sometimes the littlest of the nature’s creatures can be the most beautiful—and too often the most vulnerable.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835









The Karner Blue Butterfly, no larger than a man’s thumbnail, is one of our most beautiful butterflies. And it is an endangered species. Without some careful loving care of their environment these little butterflies are on their way to becoming extinct.

We have Karner Blues at Roshara. Our farm is located in a band that stretches across central Wisconsin where the wild lupines grow—and where the Karner Blue Butterfly is found.

Usually the Karner Blue butterfly has two hatches a year. In April the first caterpillars hatch from eggs laid the previous year. Here is the catch. These little caterpillars feed only on lupine leaves. About mid-May, the Karner Blue caterpillar turns into a little cocoon-like chrysalis. And from this chrysalis emerges the adult butterfly by the end of May and into early June.

The adult butterflies mate, lay eggs in June on or near lupine plants, and hatch in a week or so with a new crop of caterpillars. And within about three weeks, by July, we see the summer’s second generation of Karner Blues. These adults lay eggs, which will not hatch until the following year.

Lupines like full sunshine, so to keep our lupine patch alive and well—and the population of our Karner Blue Butterflies growing, we are constantly removing brush and volunteer trees. Lupines thrive on sandy acidic soil. We have not planted a single lupine seed. We bought our farm 50 years ago and I noticed a small patch of the plants at that time. Today we have about three acres of lupines and each year the patch grows larger.

The Karner Blue Butterfly adult will feed on the nectar of several flowering plants. But, alas, the Karner Blue caterpillar only feeds on Lupine leaves. So—no Lupines, no Karner Blues.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Sometimes the littlest of the nature’s creatures can be the most beautiful—and too often the most vulnerable.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Th
Photo by Steve Apps

The Karner Blue Butterfly, no larger than a man’s thumbnail, is one of our most beautiful butterflies. And it is an endangered species. Without some careful loving care of their environment these little butterflies are on their way to becoming extinct.

We have Karner Blues at Roshara. Our farm is located in a band that stretches across central Wisconsin where the wild lupines grow—and where the Karner Blue Butterfly is found.

Usually the Karner Blue butterfly has two hatches a year. In April the first caterpillars hatch from eggs laid the previous year. Here is the catch. These little caterpillars feed only on lupine leaves. About mid-May, the Karner Blue caterpillar turns into a little cocoon-like chrysalis. And from this chrysalis emerges the adult butterfly by the end of May and into early June.

The adult butterflies mate, lay eggs in June on or near lupine plants, and hatch in a week or so with a new crop of caterpillars. And within about three weeks, by July, we see the summer’s second generation of Karner Blues. These adults lay eggs, which will not hatch until the following year.

Lupines like full sunshine, so to keep our lupine patch alive and well—and the population of our Karner Blue Butterflies growing, we are constantly removing brush and volunteer trees. Lupines thrive on sandy acidic soil. We have not planted a single lupine seed. We bought our farm 50 years ago and I noticed a small patch of the plants at that time. Today we have about three acres of lupines and each year the patch grows larger.



The Karner Blue Butterfly adult will feed on the nectar of several flowering plants. But, alas, the Karner Blue caterpillar only feeds on Lupine leaves. So—no Lupines, no Karner Blues.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Sometimes the littlest of the nature’s creatures can be the most beautiful—and too often the most vulnerable.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Friday July 7, 7:30, Village Booksmith, Baraboo, WI

Wednesday, July 12, 7:00 p.m. Middleton Public Library. Launch of Sue’s and my new book: OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Wednesday, July 26, (time to be announced) Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose. Central Wisconsin launch of OLD FARM COUNTRY COOKBOOK.

Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. Symco Thresheree , Symco, WI

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835









Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Weekend Gardening


It has become a tradition to finish planting the garden at Roshara on Memorial Day weekend. This year was no exception. In central Wisconsin, morning frosts continue to visit us well into late April and early May in most years—so we wait until the end of May to finish garden planting.

This year we planted potatoes, onions, carrots, peas, radishes, lettuce, kale, swiss chard, plus setting out brussel sprouts, red and white cabbage plants on April 22. A couple of nights later the temperature dipped into the mid-twenties, which would have killed tomatoes dead. The killing frost set back the brussel sprouts and cabbage, but they survived and are doing well.

This past Saturday, May 27, we planted five long rows of sweet corn, set out fifty tomato plants, planted a row and half of green beans, a half row of zucchini, a half row of cucumbers, a short row of rutabagas, a row of squash, and a half row of Halloween pumpkins.

With the planting completed, Natasha (see photo above) mulched the tomatoes, cabbage, brussel sprouts, and broccoli with straw left over from covering our septic system over winter. Mulching conserves the moisture around these plants, and prevents weed growth. Lots of work, but it has paid off well for us on our sandy soil that is in constant need of water.

Now we wait to see what kind of a garden year it will be.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: What great fun it is to watch the garden grow—with the anticipation of great eating to come.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

June 10, 11-12 a.m. Cooksville School, Corner of Highway 59 and Church Street, Cooksvile. One Room Country Schools.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835






Saturday, May 20, 2017

It's Lilac Time


It’s lilac time. Those wonderful, sweet smelling flowers are in bloom. They bring back memories and they are filled with history. The old-fashioned ones come in white, deep purple and lavender and the bushes will grow twenty-feet tall and have trunks as thick as a small tree.

I will never forget the lilac bushes that grew along the southern fence at the one-room school that I attended for eight years. When the lilacs appeared in May, we knew the end of the school year was near. Our teacher would fill a vase with lilacs, and the musty, left over smell of wood smoke in our school room would be replaced with the gentle smell of lilac. The smell of spring.

We have a row of lilacs growing in front of the windbreak at our Roshara cabin. They were planted in 1912 when the farm buildings were moved across the road from their original location that dated to 1867. No doubt the Coombes family, who owned Roshara then, not only moved their homestead across the road, but they also moved their lilacs. Our lilacs are thus 105 years old and still going strong.

This time of the year is an especially interesting time to travel around Wisconsin. As most people know we’ve lost thousands of farms over the past several years. The barns are gone, the farm houses are gone. But a clump of lilacs often remains, like a tombstone that marks a grave, lilacs mark where once a farmstead stood. When I spot these often lonely bushes, covered with flowers, I think about the farm family that lived there. What were their stories? The lilac bushes remain to remind us of an earlier day.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Stop and smell the lilacs and think of the stories they have to tell.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.
UPCOMING EVENTS:

May 25, 7:00 p.m. Richfield Historical Societ Never Curse the Rain. Richfield Fire Hall, 2008 Hwy 175, Richfield, WI.


Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835





Saturday, May 13, 2017

Mother's Day Memories



When I was a kid, the day before Mother’s Day Pa would hike my little twin brothers and me to the far end of our twenty acre woodlot that began just outside the backdoor of our farm house. The oak trees had just begun to leaf out, and the spring birds were chattering away as we walked single file behind Pa.

Pa knew of a little opening in the far end of the woods on a hilltop where there were no trees. In this little opening the wild violets grew, hundreds of them. Mostly purple but some white ones. Some lavender ones. A carpet of violets with oak trees growing all around.

“Your Ma likes violets,” Pa said. “She’d like some for Mother’s Day.” Each of us picked as many as our little hands could hold.

A short while later we arrived home and went into the kitchen where Ma was baking bread. It seemed she was always baking bread, as we must have eaten a lot of it. Each of us handed our freshly picked, beautiful violets to Ma. “Happy Mother’s Day,” we said.

She took a water glass from the cupboard, filled it with water from the water pail that stood next to the sink, and placed our little hand-picked presents in the center of the kitchen table. Next to the ever present kerosene lamp.

“Thank you,” she said. “Thank you.” She had tears in her eyes.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Little gifts can mean a lot.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

May 18. Neville Public Museum, Green Bay. Wisconsin Agriculture: A History. Dinner at 5:00 p.m. Program at 6:00 p.m. Registrations required. Call 920-448-7874.

May 25, 7:00 p.m. Richfield Historical Sociey. Never Curse the Rain. Richfield Fire Hall, 2008 Hwy 175, Richfield, WI.


Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835




Saturday, May 06, 2017

Watching the Clouds Roll By


Okay you say. The old guy has gone daft—a word from an earlier day—today you’d probably say “gone off the rails.”

Doesn’t he have enough to do that he sits watching the clouds roll by? Something a kid would do on a summer day, looking at the clouds and seeing rabbits and dragons and whatever an active imagination might come up with.

Everyone has a creative side, whether it’s tuning an engine, baking a cake, painting a picture, writing a poem—or a hundred other examples. That creative side regularly needs encouragement. Our creative batteries need re-charging.

As a writer, I know my creative battery needs recharging, and often. Watching the clouds roll by on a warm spring day is one way to do it.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Find time to charge your creative battery.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

May 18. Neville Public Museum, Green Bay. Wisconsin Agriculture: A History. Dinner at 5:00 p.m. Program at 6:00 p.m. Registrations required. Call 920-448-7874.

May 25, 7:00 p.m. Richfield Historical Sociey. Never Curse the Rain. Richfield Fire Hall, 2008 Hwy 175, Richfield, WI.


Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835




Sunday, April 30, 2017

The Quiet





I’m sitting by my pond this chilly, late April afternoon, listening for the quiet. Quiet is becoming ever more difficult to find these days with ever-chirping cell-phones, loud shouting radio and TV commentators, sirens blaring, impatient motorists laying on their car horns, and the ever-present traffic sound in the background. No quiet. Nothing close to quiet. Even in the dead of night in the city.

But sitting by my pond the only sound I hear is the breeze rustling the tops of the oaks and maples still bare of leaves, and the subtle sound of the wind riffling the surface of the pond.

I need to hear quiet regularly, and here at my farm, sitting by my pond, I hear it. Hearing the quiet recharges my personal batteries, calms my nerves and restores my soul.

Photo: Roshara Pond, April 2017.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Listen for the quiet.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

May 18. Neville Public Museum, Green Bay. Wisconsin Agriculture: A History. Dinner at 5:00 p.m. Program at 6:00 p.m. Registrations required. Call 920-448-7874.

May 25, 7:00 p.m. Richfield Historical Sociey. Never Curse the Rain. Richfield Fire Hall, 2008 Hwy 175, Richfield, WI.


Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835



Sunday, April 23, 2017

Farm Garden Day



On this Earth Day, a “how could the weather be better” April Saturday, the garden crew consisting of Steve, Natasha, Paul, Sue and the Senior Supervisor gathered for the annual early crop garden planting at the farm.

The sky was blue. Birds were singing and a slight breeze rustled the pine needles of the trees that fronted the garden. The temperature was a “good for working” seventy degrees.

After disking the cover crop of winter wheat into the soft ground, and marking the rows, we proceeded to plant—well the crew proceeded to plant as I kept track of what went where and why.

By early afternoon we had planted six long rows of white potatoes and one long row of red potatoes, a row and half of red and yellow onions, a row of peas, and long row of what Natasha called our “salad row.” Here she planted several kinds of lettuce, spinach, kale, Swiss chard, radishes and carrots.

In a week or so we’ll set out the broccoli and cabbage. We’ll wait a few weeks before we plant the “warm wanting” garden crops such as sweet corn, green beans, and the vining crops.

Photo: Steve marking the garden rows with a marker my father made some fifty years ago.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: It’s a great feeling when the early garden seeds are in the ground.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

April 27, 6:00 p.m. Waupaca Historical Society, 320 S. Main Street, Waupaca. Barns of Wisconsin.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Sunday, April 16, 2017

First Garden Seeds Planted


It’s time. The weather is right. The soil is ready. The seeds are purchased. It’s time to plant the garden—the early stuff not tomatoes, sweet corn, squash, pumpkins, green beans and other such that requires warmer soil, warmer nights, and yes warmer days.

On Good Friday—a proper day for planting I’m hoping—I planted four rows in the raised garden in my backyard. One row each of spinach, radishes, lettuce and peas. It’s a tiny garden, only three feet by eight feet. But each year I’m surprised how much twenty-four square feet of soil will produce.

I have a problem with rabbits, and squirrels that want to dig up the seeds as soon as I plant them. I cover the garden with nearly invisible black netting that keeps the critters out. As the plants come up and grow, I keep raising the netting, but it remains in place throughout the growing season.

Next Saturday is garden day at the farm—long rows of potatoes, more lettuce, radishes and other cool weather crops. A much larger garden that feeds three families, and provides ample opportunity for hoeing, weed pulling, rototilling, and yes, harvesting when things are ready.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: The coming of spring is confirmed when the first garden seeds are planted.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:
April 17, 6:30 p.m. New Berlin Library. Never Curse the Rain.

April 23, 7:00 p.m. Lebanon Historical Society. Town Hall, Fire Station, Lebanon. Storytelling.

April 27, 6:00 p.m. Waupaca Historical Society, 320 S. Main Street, Waupaca. Barns of Wisconsin.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Sunday, April 09, 2017

Tree Planting: 2017


Starting in April 1966, we have planted trees at Roshara, our Waushara County farm every year. That first year we planted 2,000 trees, as I recall. Since then some years we have planted as few as 50 trees and as many as 7,500 one year (we had machine help that year). Otherwise we planted them by hand, with two person crews—one with a shovel making little slits in the ground, the other placing the tree and stamping the ground firm around it.

We have planted while it snowed, while it rained, while it sleeted. And, on occasion, when the sun was shining the wind was down and it was a joy to be outside.

We have planted red pine, white pine, jack pine and spruce. But mostly red pine, which does well on our sandy, droughty soils. We have thinned and done some minimal logging twice in these fifty plus years. Those first trees planted are now some 75 feet tall and more than a foot across.

This past Saturday was our planting day—son Steve, daughter Sue and son-in-law Paul did the heavy work. Steve and Sue sort of helped with the first planting back in 1967, but just a little, as they were little tykes at the time.

Different from many early tree planting days, Saturday’s temperature climbed into the high 60s, the sun was out and it was a grand day to do most anything outdoors. It had rained a lot during the week, so the soil was moist and easy for digging. No complaints from the tree planters this year.

Photo: Sue and Paul planting a spruce tree.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Little trees, like grandchildren, are essential for the future.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

April 10, 1:30. Kiel Library, One-Room Schools

April 17, 6:30 p.m. New Berlin Library. Never Curse the Rain.

April 23, 7:00 p.m. Lebanon Historical Society. Town Hall, Fire Station, Lebanon. Storytelling.

April 27, 6:00 p.m. Waupaca Historical Society, 320 S. Main Street, Waupaca. Barns of Wisconsin.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835


Saturday, April 01, 2017

Wisconsin Agriculturist Winners



On a cloudy, chilly “waiting for spring” day, Ruth and I traveled to La Sure’s Hall in Oshkosh where I spoke at the 2017 Wisconsin Agriculturist Master Agriculturist Program.

Starting in 1977, each year the Wisconsin Agriculturist magazine recognizes outstanding farmers in Wisconsin. The 2017 winners: Mike Cerny, Sharon; Rick Dado, Amery; Jim Rickert, Eldorado; and the Siemers family, Wally Siemers, Sherry Siemers-Peterman, Dan Siemers, and Paul Siemers, Newton.

I talked about Wisconsin’s rich agricultural history. Each of these winners talked about their agricultural activities. The contrasts between yesterday’s farming and today’s farming is near unbelievable. Each of these winners spent a few minutes talking about what they were doing and how they were doing it. I was impressed with how they spent time recognizing their families and their farm neighbors. This side of farming has not changed over the years.

My congratulations to each family. My hat is also off to Fran O’ Leary, editor of the Wisconsin Agriculturist for sponsoring the program.

Also, I want to recognize Halley Pucker, from the marketing department of the Wisconsin Historical Society Press. The Oshkosh event was her last day of work for WHSP. Over the past several years, Halley and I have traveled around much of Wisconsin, me talking, she driving and selling books. I will miss her friendly smile and her always upbeat attitude. Thank you Halley.



THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Today’s Wisconsin’s farmers are creating tomorrow’s agricultural history.
.
WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

April 6, 1:00 p.m. Union Grove Library.

April 8, 9-12:00 Writing Workshop, Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI

April 10, 1:30. Kiel Library, One-Room Schools

April 17, 6:30 p.m. New Berlin Library. Never Curse the Rain.

April 23, 7:00 p.m. Lebanon Historical Society. Town Hall, Fire Station, Lebanon. Storytelling.

April 27, 6:00 p.m. Waupaca Historical Society, 320 S. Main Street, Waupaca. Barns of Wisconsin.



Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, March 26, 2017

March Lion and Lamb


On this last weekend of March, I went looking for the lamb at my farm. It was supposed to appear at the end of March especially if we were blessed with March’s famous lion at the beginning of the month. Which we were.

The temperature was 36 degrees as I stood looking over my pond, which was still nearly completely frozen. A northwest wind sent spits of a cold rain in my face, as my watery eyes looked for even the slightest indication of spring and the sprightly lamb that was supposed to announce its arrival. A few feeble snow piles remained on the north side of the trail, holding on, letting me know that the lion of winter had not given up.

Off to the north I caught the sound of a pair of sandhill cranes. I always enjoy their call—they nest on the west side of the pond each year. Frustrated with the frozen pond, I’m sure. And flying low overhead I spotted a pair of ducks moving fast. Disgusted as they looked for open water and found none.

I hustled back to the cabin, put another stick of wood in the stove, and watched the rain. March’s lamb is got to be hiding somewhere—but where?

Photo: Roshara’s frozen pond.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Can’t remember when March came in like a lion and went out like a lion.
.
WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.

April 6, 1:00 p.m. Union Grove Library.

April 8, 9-12:00 Writing Workshop, Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI

April 10, 1:30. Kiel Library, One-Room Schools

April 17, 6:30 p.m. New Berlin Library. Never Curse the Rain.

April 23, 7:00 p.m. Lebanon Historical Society. Town Hall, Fire Station, Lebanon. Storytelling.

April 27, 6:00 p.m. Waupaca Historical Society, 320 S. Main Street, Waupaca. Barns of Wisconsin.



Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Master Gardeners


Yesterday I had the opportunity to speak to the Madison Area Master Gardeners at their annual meeting. The Master Gardeners, organized in the late 1970s in Wisconsin, are trained by University of Wisconsin-Extension specialists in all matters related to gardening. As a group of volunteers, they answer phone requests for horticultural information, work with youth groups, schools, help with demonstration gardens and more.

I wish there had been Master Gardeners when I worked as an Extension agent in Green Bay, in the early 1960s. I worked as a livestock and 4-H agent, at a time when the folks living in the city of Green Bay discovered that the our office knew something about horticulture. I was the one with the least knowledge about horticulture—except for my practical experience as an already long-time vegetable gardener.

A call came in with a question about a plum tree. I drove out to the woman’s house on the east side of Green Bay. I soon learned, even before I saw the plum tree, that it was one of this woman’s favorites. She told me she had bought it from a nursery in New York State, and she said, “It has done so well until this year.”

I walked with her to her backyard, where she showed me her little plum tree, now about eight feet tall. This was in June, and already the little tree, clearly in trouble, had dropped most of its leaves, which lay on the ground under the tree.

“What spray would you recommend for my poor little tree?” she said.

After looking closely at the tree, and deciding there was no hope for it, I said, “I would recommend pruning.”

“Oh,” she said. “What kind of pruning?”

“I would suggest pruning--level with the ground?”

“What?” she huffed. Had there been a shovel handy I believe she would have clobbered me with it.

I hurried to my car and back to the office where I encountered the office chair who had already gotten a call from this woman, insisting “that the incompetent young man you sent to solve my plum problem should be fired.” He was laughing, and when he regained his composure said, “You likely gave her the correct answer, but you need to work on your approach.” He was still laughing when he said it.

Photo: Speaking to Madison Area Gardeners.


THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Sometimes how you say something is more important than what you say.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Friday, August 18, 9-4:00 p.m. The Clearing, Door County.
Call 920-854-4088. Limited enrollment.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.

April 6, 1:00 p.m. Union Grove Library.

April 8, 9-12:00 Writing Workshop, Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI

April 10, 1:30. Kiel Library, One-Room Schools

April 17, 6:30. New Berlin Library. Never Curse the Rain.



Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Muddling



The word “muddle” is defined as a state of confusion or disorder. “Muddle through” means to do something when you don’t know how to do it.

On the farm, on those days when the weather couldn’t decide whether it should be winter or spring, we had lots of mud. And did lots of muddling. The barnyard was mud, and the cattle stomped around in it. The path from the house to the barn, once snow covered and firm, was mud. Oozing, dirty, despicable mud. Mud that got on Ma’s nerves. “Leave those muddy boots on the porch.”

The road past our farm was mud. A challenge for the milk hauler; a problem for the mailman. In the mornings, when the mud had become frozen ruts in a once smooth road, we walked to school with little difficulty. Coming home was the challenge as mud sucked at our boots and made walking difficult.

As the definition of “muddle through” suggests, we tried to make the best of it—but mud is unpredictable. Ask any milk hauler who had to enlist a nearby farmer and his trusty team to help pull his milk truck to drier ground.

In a week or two, the mud disappeared, as spring once more returned, but the ruts in the road remained until the road grader appeared. The path from the house to barn was worn smooth again, and grass once more began to grow.

Photo: A deer outside my cabin window looks forward to spring.


THE OLD TIMER SAYS: When I am alone, I prefer to be myself.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Saturday, March 18, Noon. Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, 149 Waubesa St., Madison.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, March 05, 2017

Spring Pushed Back


It’s a perennial battle this time of the year in the Upper Midwest—the battle between an arrogant spring and an overconfident winter.

This year it happened earlier than usual, in February, with a sprightly spring catching a complacent winter by surprise. Temperatures soaring into the sixties, when they should be in the thirties. Melting snow, rainstorms complete with thunder and lightning. Cardinals singing, sandhill cranes returning from their southern winter haunts, Canada geese on the wing.

Spring smiles, believing it has won. But alas, those of us with many winters in our histories know winter’s mean streak. Know that winter has more to offer before it takes its long seasonal sleep until next fall.

And so the northwest wind blows once more, and it snows, and the temperature drops way below freezing. Winter gloats and spring wonders what happened. Deep down, as the calendar marches relentlessly into March, winter knows it will eventually lose the battle. That spring will eventually win. But does a beaten back spring know it?

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Met this fellow the other day who said he was born with nothing and had most of it left.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Tune in: Wednesday, March 8, 7:00 p.m. Never Curse the Rain on all Wisconsin Public TV stations. Based on my book, Never Curse the Rain, Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2017.


WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Saturday, March 18, Noon. Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, 149 Waubesa St., Madison.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835



Sunday, February 26, 2017

Writing the Words


“Can you tell us how you go about writing?” I’ve gotten that question many times over the past several years. It’s difficult for me to explain how I do the actual writing, how I put words down on paper, one after the other, to make sentences. Some of the process involves creativity, some of it tapping my memory, but a lot of it a mystery.

When my writing students ask how I spend my time as a writer, I tell them I spend a third of my time doing research, a third of my time writing, a third of my time revising and re-writing, and a third of my time marketing what I’ve written. I also fess up that my math skills were never especially good.

“It takes a village to raise a child,” is a common phrase. I’ve modified that a bit pertaining to my writing. For me “It takes a family for my writing to succeed.” Let me explain. Once I have some words down on paper, whether it’s this blog, columns I write for a weekly newspaper, a magazine article, or a chapter for a book--my wife reads it. If the material does not get past Ruth, it goes nowhere. As I jokingly say, my first reader is ruthless.

If the writing gets past Ruth, and the material is on its way to becoming a book, I bring in other members of the family. My daughter, Susan, an elementary teacher and a published author, is an excellent editor. She’s an expert at spotting errors in logic, inaccurate dialogue and overwritten description.

For big picture critiques, I turn to my Son, Steve, who is a photo-journalist. He helps me with the big ideas, the themes in my writing. If I’m writing something related to the environment, which is fairly often, I turn to my daughter-in-law, Natasha. She is a former environmental editor, trained as a journalist, and has an uncanny ability to spot dumb errors I often make. When I seek a business person’s take on what I’ve written, I turn to my son, Jeff, who is an investment counselor in Avon, Colorado.

I do all of this before I send my writing off to my editors, who put their professional training and experience to work on my words.

I also do joint projects with my kids. Steve and I have collaborated on several books. In the above photo, taken by Kathy Borkowski, Steve and I are signing a book we did together, Roshara Journal, at the recent Garden Expo. I did the words, Steve the photos. Sue and I have a new book coming out this fall, Old Farm Country Cookbook. I wrote the stories; Sue did the recipes.


THE OLD TIMER SAYS: There’s many a step between the first word written and it being published.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, March 8, 7:00 p.m. Never Curse the Rain on all Wisconsin Public TV stations.

Saturday, March 18, Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, Madison. Whispers and Shadows.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.

Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Writer’s Workshop, Wild Rose Library.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest nonfiction book, Never Curse the Rain, and his newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. Also available are Wisconsin Agriculture: A History,
Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their own stories.

Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The New Normal


It’s not normal. That’s what my dad would have said had he been here to experience these days of 60 degree temperatures in February. The snow is nearly gone. The ice is melting. The golfers are golfing. Teenagers are playing basketball outdoors without their shirts.

But there’s a downside to this respite from winter. We had something similar last year, but a little later. It warmed up; my grape vine began to blossom, and it got frosty once more. The result: In 2015 I harvested a bushel of grapes, in 2016, I harvested five grapes, not five pounds, not five quarts, but five, scrawny little grapes. The grape blossoms had frozen. Let’s hope this doesn’t happen this year.

I talked to a friend a couple days ago about this. He told me the acorn production last year was way down—the oak flowers came out too early and had frozen. I’m sure there were many other examples.

While we in the Midwest are basking in pseudo summer, the West Coast is drowning in floods, and the East Coast is buried in winter. Are these kinds of weather patterns the new normal? Researchers on climate change say “yes.” Unexpected weather patterns. One-hundred year rainfalls coming every couple of years. Record high temperatures in winter. Then below freezing.


THE OLD TIMER SAYS: The new normal for weather—fooling the plants. Confusing the people.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, February 22, 6:00 p. m. Wild Rose H.S. Auditorium. Premier Showing of Never Cruse the Rain, A Film by Wisconsin Public TV. Jerry’s newest hour-long documentary.

Wednesday, March 8, 7:00 p.m. Never Curse the Rain on all Wisconsin Public TV stations.

Saturday, March 18, Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, Madison. Whispers and Shadows.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Writer’s Workshop, Wild Rose Library.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)
Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. and Wisconsin Agriculture: A History.
Jerry’s newest books, Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their stories—are also available.
Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Garden Expo 2017


With temperatures in the high thirties, the snow melting and the ice disappearing, people flocked to Wisconsin Public Television’s annual Garden Expo held at the Alliant Center in Madison. The show began on Friday, Feb. 10 and continued through Sunday, February 12

My son Steve and I were there on Saturday. Steve and I talked about our book, Roshara Journal: Chronicling Four Seasons, Fifty Years, and 120 Acres. Steve shared photos from the book and he talked about how he shot the various pictures. I shared entries from my journal that I’ve kept since we bought Roshara, our Wild Rose farm, 50 years ago. We both suggested that people with land, backyards, and gardens do what we’ve done over the years—capture what was happening in words and in pictures.

Attendees to the Garden Expo could also learn about straw bale gardening, “Landscaping tips for Elderly Living,” and “Birdscaping in the Midwest.” You could attend a session titled, “Everything you wanted to know about beets.” Square foot gardening remains popular—there was a seminar on how to do it. And if growing tomatoes has become a challenge, there was a seminar to answer your tomato questions.

For the nature lovers, there were seminars on Monarch Butterflies, Gardening for Humingbirds, and attracting Eastern Bluebirds. And much, much more.

If you came with garden questions, UW-Extension experts were there to help with information from insects to soils, plant diseases to how to enroll in a Master Garden program.

It was a great break from winter, and an opportunity to capture a bit of spring.


THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Garden Expo. A warm taste of spring.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Nine to Twelve in the morning.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Wednesday, February 22, 6:00 p. m. Wild Rose H.S. Auditorium. Premier Showing of Never Cruse the Rain, A Film by Wisconsin Public TV. Jerry’s newest hour-long documentary.

Wednesday, March 8, 7:00 p.m. Never Curse the Rain on all Wisconsin Public TV stations.

Saturday, March 18, Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, Madison. Whispers and Shadows.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh

Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Writer’s Workshop, Wild Rose Library.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)

Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. and Wisconsin Agriculture: A History.

Jerry’s newest books, Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their stories—are also available.
Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Teakettle



When I was a kid, a teakettle always sat on the back of the kitchen woodstove. I don’t remember that we ever used it for tea. Nobody in the family drank what I considered at the time the most foul smelling, bad tasting drink that had ever been invented, discovered, or however it came to be. A city relative offered me a drink of tea—the one-time, bad experience.

That’s not to say that the teakettle wasn’t important. It was of critical importance, as it was the only source of hot water on the farm. The kitchen woodstove had a reservoir on its right side, but water there only reached a tepid temperature.

When Ma needed hot water for something she was cooking—the teakettle provided the answer. If one of my brothers or I had a sore throat, hot water from the teakettle and several teaspoons of salt in a glass and we gargled and killed the sore throat—at least tried to.

If a spot of ice on the step to the kitchen door needed thawing—the teakettle was there to solve the problem.

If a bump, bruise or injury required a hot water bottle, the teakettle provided the water.

And when the teakettle was simply left alone, its steady trickle of steam added a little humidity to the too dry air of the winter kitchen. I found the gentle sound of steam coming from the teakettle on a cold winter day pleasing and relaxing.

Today, a teakettle sits on my woodstove at the cabin, adding a little humidity to the air—but more importantly, triggering memories of an earlier day. Ruth also likes the teakettle water for hot chocolate. Still no tea, after all these years.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Home is where your story begins (Annie Danielson) A gift from a Minnesota friend, Nan C. Corazalla.

THANK YOU; A big thank you to the 75 people who turned out for the mid-Wisconsin launch of my new book, NEVER CURSE THE RAIN, at the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose last Saturday.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Tuesday, February 7, 11:00 a.m. Larry Meiller Show, Wisconsin Public Radio.

Saturday, February 11, 2:15. Garden Expo, Alliant Center, Madison. Roshara Journal

Sunday, February 12, 1:00 p.m. Garden Expo, Alliant Center, Madison. TV documentary “Never Curse the Rain” book signing and discussion.

Wednesday, February 22, 6:00 p. m. Wild Rose H.S. Auditorium. Premier Showing of Never Cruse the Rain, A Film by Wisconsin Public TV.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)
Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. and Wisconsin Agriculture: A History.
Jerry’s newest books, Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their stories—are also available.
Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984
barnard@wildroselibrary.org
www.wildroselibrary.org
920-622-3835