St Croix River Road Ramblings

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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Hints of Autumn?

Took a drive from farm to the cabin (2 miles) and on the way stopped to check out Brother Ev's deer hunting shack

High atop a hill in the edge of a field is Ev's hunting cabin.  I think it is about 40 years old or so.  He made it from home sawn lumber.  Every deer hunting season, after the first weekend, when hunting is slow, the boys migrate to the shack for some leisurely hunting.  
The view to the north across the valley
Some trees are turning--I think it was because of the several dry weeks -- not because fall is coming. 

The yellow transparent apples are almost ripe.  This apple tree, nearest the outhouse, seems to grow especially well!

The cattail swamp to the east.  When we were kids, this was a small pond that our cows used for drinking water.  Over the years of pasturing it, they gradually tromped the edges in and wallowed through it until now it is a very shallow cattail bog with no water in sight. 

The yellow transparent is a very early apple--just about ripe right now.  Makes good pies and apple crisps, then one day you go out there and the apples have all turned to mush over night.  Need to pick them early. Mom made apple sauce out of them in a good year (this is a good year for some apples).
Getting ready for the "old sale" at the Cushing Community Center this Saturday 8-noon at Cushing Fun Days.  Downstairs the Fire Department (51 years old) is having a pancake breakfast and upstairs we are having an open house in the museum (Sterling Eureka and Laketown Historical Society) and a sale of "old stuff."  
Since I have been cleaning out Mom's knick knacks and old dishes and so on, I am tubbing a bunch of stuff to take out and see if it is saleable or not.   As I go through the dishes, there are a few from what I remember as Mom's pine cone set; the gold rimmed white ones; several sets of plastic (Melmac?); some vintage Tupperware.  I almost put the last of the two stemmed ice-cream dishes in the sale, but I got to thinking about the enjoyment we got with them and back in the cupboard they went. 

About this time of year--in 1950 or thereabouts--Dad would drive the 38 Chev out to Cushing and get a 50 cent block of ice from Mike Laier (who had a wonderful sawdust filled ice shed behind the north bar -- near the Co-op).  We used the hammer and chisel to break it up and fill the hand crank ice cream freezer around the drum.  Marv used the dipper to scoop out two quarts of fresh cream from the milk cans sitting in the cold water tank; a few raw eggs, some sugar and if there were still some raspberries left, a handful of those went into the metal bucket with the dasher inside.  
Then an hour of cranking and salting the ice until it got stiff, 20 minutes more of impatient waiting to let it "ripen" and we had a wonderful treat.  Of course, with no freezer of our own yet, we had to eat it all before it melted.   No artificial ingredients, no worry about fat, sugar or diet, just pure pleasure!

That might be Marv and Ev and Byron, or maybe I have mixed up our photos with some others ;-)

Junque or Treasure ?

And many more boxes to go!