dried squash today

spent the day cutting up squash and spreading it out to dry on screens

we spent the day getting ready to dry crooked neck squash. mine didn’t grow this year. I bought these from an amish store in Missouri. these squash were about 15 to 20 pounds each. we dried 5 of them today. we still have some dried squash left from last year. this will have to last us til next year.

we decided to cut the squash up today because it will be warmer tomorrow. temps in the 70s next few days. it may rain this week end but the squash should be pretty much done by then. if we have to, we can bring it inside and let it finish drying indoors.

it didn’t take long to cut the rinds off and dice up the squash. we have done this enough times that we have the routine down pat. I had one of my playlists going while we worked.

the trick to cutting up squash is to have a sharp knife. gotta cut off the rinds. then dice it up. we didn’t cut it in rings. we diced it all up to spread out on screens. I poked my finger and had to stop to put on a band aid. I was trying to rush to get done. guess I shouldn’t have been.

I had to re-staple some of my drying screens. they tightened up once I stapled them. I will have to rebuild some of my screens this fall or winter. some of the boards cracked or broke. some of the screens tore too. I will have to replace them.

I ordered a roll of screen off amazon. it is 30 inches by 100 feet. I can remake 14 screens with that. it is aluminum screen. that is tougher than the fiberglass screen. the fiberglass screen stretches too much under the weight of the corn or squash.

we saved the seeds from these squash. we have them soaking in salt water. later we will add all-spice, cinnamon and pumpkin spice to it when we spread it out on cookie sheets. we will pop that into the oven to toast the seeds. our family likes to eat the seeds when we fix them like that.

I bought some pine boards when I went to town. I will make 5 more egg laying boxes with them. that will give me 15 laying boxes in the chicken house. that should be enough for the 24 hens I have. I am starting to get more eggs now. I go thru all the trouble of raising chickens because I want fresh eggs when I have breakfast. store bought eggs never taste as good.

will see what the rest of the week brings

happy native American day

happy columbus day. uh wait, natives aint celebrating his day anymore. now it is indigenous day. but aint we already got a Native American day? so in protest of Columbus day we have two native American days. that works I guess.

to me every day is native American or indigenous day. well actually I am potawatomi. I identify with that more than native American. or with indigenous.

not to age myself but i remember an old Flip Wilson comedy skit. he acted the part of an indian going on about Columbus. in his character voice he said ‘we don’t want to be discovered. why don’t you discover yourself on out of here’. i thought it was a funny skit. now it would be considered racially insensitive or some thing.

I got to hear my grandson take the lead on a song after someone else started it this weekend. I am so proud of him. he was always singing when he was just a little guy. I made him about a dozen drums. those were his toys. he was always playing with them.

I have 5 big crooked neck squash left. I will dry them this week. it wont be hot but the squash will still dry. it wont take me long to cut them up and dry them. I will spread them out on the screens I made. i should have enough squash to use for ceremonies.

i may have to add staples to tighten up the screen. some have sagged fom the weight of the corn when it was drying. once i restaple them they will work good. i made about a dozen screens to use to dry corn or squash on. i also dried hominy on them. i will make some hominy sometime also.

gotta head to town today. we gonna send money to pay for our wild rice we got shipped to us. we now have ten pounds of it. that should last us til next season. I love the taste of wild rice. I can eat it as often as I want now.

while in town i will buy some pine boards to make more egg boxes. i have 24 hens now. chickens are like some of these new wave fort njuns. they have a pecking order. the younger ones don’t get to lay in the older boxes. nor roost on the higher roosts.

i will buy a bale of straw also to line the new boxes with. i will use the left over straw in my dog house. if i have any left i will put it in the grow boxes. i will make to use all of the straw because one bale is pricey. i will get my money out of it.

i have been busy this weekend. i didn’t have time to check out my face book page. i didn’t miss some of the drama. i didn’t get to walk my two miles either. i will start walking again this week.

i will sort more porcupine hair this week too. i will make roaches all fall and winter.

fall and winter

we are having fall weather and some winter too. night time temps will be in the low 30s this week. there is a freeze warning for tonight. I switched the central air over to heat now. don’t wanna wake up cold.

I don’t have any plants to cover. i do have some indian beans climbing on the corn stalks. they have bean pods on them. i don’t know what a freeze will do to them. i have some habanero peppers still on the plants. and a few Anaheim peppers. maybe i will pick them. we are using the green chiles we fixed this year. they make the hash browns taste good.

I didn’t have to serve on jury duty the other day. we sat around for an hour. the judge came in and apologized. he said you cant have a trial with out a defendant. the defendant didn’t show and his lawyer couldn’t get ahold of him. so we were dismissed.

I am not done with jury duty yet. I have to call again next month. the last time I had to call the jury hotline three times before I was done with my obligation. seems odd that ordinary citizens have to obey the law while our government leaders can do anything they want.

I ordered tickets to KU’s men’s basketball exhibition. I haven’t missed any opening exhibition games in the past 15 to 20 years. if I did, it couldn’t have been very many. I am glad that I will be going to another Jayhawk game. I am betting that some games will be on a channel that I cant get.

not all the new chicks I bought this spring are laying eggs yet. they are just starting to lay. i am getting from 5 to 11 eggs a day. over time they will lay more consistently. i will get more eggs too. i found one egg in the new boxes i built.

the mail man delivered eight pounds of wild rice yesterday. two more pounds should follow. the wild rice had a good light color. it wasn’t all black like the cultivated kind. this wild rice came from the White Earth rez i will have to pay for the rice now. i am gonna send it Walmart to Walmart on Monday.

now i need to go squirrel hunting. i like it cooked with wild rice. i haven’t been out in the timber for awhile. the frost should kill the high weeds. the leaves will turn now too. that will make it easier to see the squirrels. too bad my dog wont go with me. or maybe he will.

I am still wanting to get me a pup or two. i answered an ad on craigslist. it sounded legit. then when i answered they asked for $400. i said i will pass. then they asked how much i had. i didn’t answer. i haven’t heard back from them. probably trying to get money from some one else. i aint paying big bucks when some unfortunate dogs need a good home.

the grandsons are coming for the weekend. that should be fun.

gonna be busy

i built these boxes in my chicken house for the hens to lay eggs in.

I had to build some more boxes the hens can lay eggs in. i had five boxes that were enough for the 8 hens i had laying. now i have 16 new hens. not all are laying but they soon will be. that’s why i built 5 more boxes. they don’t lay at the same time. that’s why I check a few times a day to make sure nothing is getting the eggs.

i used a book case i bought at a garage sale to make the first set of boxes. it only cost a coupla bucks. it was made of 1 inch by 12 inch pine boards. that was the right size for egg boxes. i had to use whatever boards i had around here for the second set of boxes. they were also 12 inches wide.

i will add some more egg boxes after our fall dance. i might have to buy pine boards since i don’t have anything here now. that will cost a few dollars new. i will only have to build them once. they will last a long time. next i have to find hay to line the boxes.

i have usually skated when it came to jury duty calls. not so this time. i have to report at the court house today at 8:45. don’t know if i can be dismissed or not. we are having our fall dance for the next 4 days. i don’t believe in using that as an excuse to get over but i do have to be there. i will see what happens when i report. I will get about $20 just for showing up. righteous bucks.

i missed two days of walking. i made up for it yesterday. i logged my two miles on the paved road by our house. konugish tries to follow me but i make him stay home. poor dog has been loyal to me since he was a pup. now he is old. i probably wont get to walk til after the dance. dancing for a few days will make up for not walking.

i mowed my yard again. i was almost done with it but i ran out of gas. i went to nation to get some more. i filled the mower up and tried to get done. the sun was going down so i didn’t get finished. our people used to say have work done by sundown. i try to follow that. i will finish after jury duty.

I have 8 pounds of wild rice heading to me. that’s all that will fit in the shipping box. I will also get 2 more pounds in another box. that should last me a while. if it don’t I can always get more. it is coming from the White Earth rez.

gotta head out to see what happens at jury duty.

went to a chiefs game

I haven’t been to a Kansas City Chiefs game in a few years. that changed last night. I went to see them play the Colts last night. we left early to avoid traffic tie ups. we still got into traffic that was at a crawl. it took sometime to get into the parking lot. we were still over an hour early for the game.

the game was close thru out. I liked the atmosphere. mary and I wore our new mahomes jerseys. gotta fit in with the sea of red at arrowhead stadium. it was real loud with 78 thousand fans really into it.

I hope I didn’t bring the chiefs bad luck. they lost to the colts. it got quiet at the end when the colts went ahead by 9 points with a few minutes to play. some of the crowd didn’t stick around. they left early. we were hard core and stayed til the end.

some people dressed up in fake head dresses. i expected that. I didn’t see any painted up but I imagine they were there. the crowd kept doing the tomahawk chop. that was a little annoying.

no way that can ever be stopped. aim protested that for years. guess there is no point getting mad about non natives trying to glom onto or parody our culture when many of our own people don’t want it.

i got my usual picture taken with cheer leaders. i did that once and now it has become a habit. i get a few ku cheer leaders to pose with me when i go to games at allen field house.

i checked out a chiefs souvenir shop. most of the stuff was priced more than i wanted to pay. that’s why i got a jersey made before i went to the game. i got it for half the price of what one would cost at arrowhead. they only thing i bought at the shop was a refrigerator magnet. i have a collection of them from places i have been to.

mary and i went in on $20 worth of 50/50 raffle tickets. the raffle tickets sold $160,000. the winner would get half of that. we didn’t win. i was planning on my trip to Angkor wat and China with my winnings if we hit it.

we stay thru the entire game. i was hoping the ones leaving early would empty the parking lot. that didn’t happen. getting out of the parking lot was a slow process. cars were sitting in line waiting to move. we didn’t get home until about 1:30. i slept in today.

my next game will be to see a K U men’s basketball game. that will be in a coupla weeks. i might get me a new KU jersey.

got chores to do.

got eggs?

the other day I found a small egg in the chicken house. that gave me hope that the chicks I bought this spring might start laying. I guessed right. today I went out to get the eggs and found 9 eggs.

about 4 of them were also small. it is like that when they first start laying. wont be long before they are producing big brown eggs. I went back to check again and found 2 more.

i brought in almost a dozen today. this is the most eggs I had in one day for quite some time. I might be getting this many every day now. my chickens might pay for themselves. I will sell my surplus eggs. I will use the money to buy feed.

what this also means is I will have to build some more egg boxes. not sure of I have any wood to build them with. I will check around the yard and see what I have. I will need more egg boxes for as many hens as I have. nice problem to have.

I missed my two mile walk yesterday. it was raining so we didn’t go. we also had to head to Lawrence to pick up the grand sons. we made up for our missed walk today. we walked 2 miles. konugish has accepted that I make him stay home. he is too old to be walking that much. hope I can continue my walking.

speaking of my dog, I thought I found him some company. I answered an ad on craigslist. it advertised two Australian Shepard pups. they were 11 weeks old. the ad said they were interested in a good home. no rehoming fee like most ads.

I emailed them. I got back a list of questions I had to answer. heard back they were happy to hear from me. problem was they were in montana. it would take $400 to ship them. I said I would pass. they came back with how much you got. I didn’t answer. well I am still looking for some pups.

I finally got to watch another KU football game. no I don’t have espn+. the game was on a network channel. maybe someone learning that is the way to reach fans. or maybe it was because we were playing OU who is ranked 6th in the nation.

the jayhawks got beat. I am a fan but I expected that. they did cover the point spread. I still have faith this team will be better in the future than we have been in the past. no way to go but up.

I have tickets to the Kansas City Chiefs game tomorrow. the game is at 7:30. I should have plenty of time to get there. I will wear my mahomes jersey. i wont be on tv because I am near the top of the stadium. none of my native friends will see me doing the tomahawk chop. and nope I wont wear face paint and a fake head dress.

next will be KU basketball. i will score some tickets to the first exhibition game. i missed late night. didn’t get to see snoop dog.

will see what this week brings.

fall season

the leaves aren’t turning color. they aren’t falling either. everything is green but it is fall season. I was reminded of that by a squirrel. fall is when i hunt them. it has been running around my yard. it has a nest in one of my trees. question is will I try to bag it sooner or later.

I have seen young squirrels on the bridge near my house. I see them when I am walking on the road. I have walked 7 times so far since I started walking again. I walk two miles each time. I plan on keeping it up. i am trying to make sure my next lab results will be good.

I got my flu shot as I do every year. they were giving them at the clinic. I am an elder so I got in. I wish they had a shot for colds. I usually catch a cold every year. I am doing good about not having a flu. that’s why I still get a shot.

I have been sorting porcupine hair. I put in a few hours a day when I get a chance. that is a never ending job. I have pounds and pounds of porcupine hair. I imagine that trappers that have done business with me will be contacting me again. porcupine season is roughly September to March or so. some trappers wait until they have a big pile of it before they sell it to me.

I have sorted porky hair a lot. I have the sorted hair separated from what aint sorted. I want to have as much sorted as I can this fall and winter. I will also tie a few roaches in that time too. my goal is to make as many roaches as I can before next pow wow season. I want to have a stand at a few pow wows.

mary asked the meat locker to save me some deer hides. they did last year but didn’t tell me. they took my phone number again. i quit asking guys around the rez to save me some. they say they will but don’t. i want to make some miniature hand drums for my stand. gotta have smalls to sell. i might make a coupla hand drums too.

I asked some one I know about wild rice. she said that she was gonna buy up a big lot of it. I will get 5 or 6 pounds from her when that happens. I like to have a good supply of wild rice. I enjoy eating it. it is healthier than white rice. i like wild rice cooked with squirrel. it has a good taste.

i found one small egg the other day. that gave me some hope. when a hen first starts laying, some times the egg will be small. i am hoping that the chicks i bought this spring will start laying soon. when they do, i will have plenty of fresh eggs.

gotta get back to sorting porky hair.

remember boarding school survivors

yesterday was orange shirt day to remember boarding school survivors. mary and I fixed our Anaheim peppers into diced green chiles.

I bought a t shirt at the last potawatomi gathering held here. as soon as I seen the text on it I bought it. it was about those that survived boarding school. and those that didn’t. yesterday was orange shirt day so I wore the shirt. I even wore it to town.

i put this same picture of me on facebook. i thought it would open some dialogue about that. it got a few comments. i thought more people would be interested in that experience.

I wrote on my post that I “personally experienced” boarding school. I chose those words because many times some ‘expert’ would talk about what happened to ‘those indian children’. in other words they didn’t go there them selves.

l let a published author I met read my chapter on boarding school. she was half way thru the chapter when she realized that this was a first person account.

once our tribe was gonna pay someone to come here and talk about what boarding school was like. some bureaucrat didn’t understand that some of our own members went to boarding school. what could some one else tell us. that is always the attitude here. some one from some where else knows more than we do.

I was telling one of my close relatives about a time when the nuns gave me a beating. she said I know some one who can top that. I said I am not in competition with anyone to give the worst horror story. she totally missed the point I was finally opening up about some thing that happened to me.

mary went to a boarding school where they have reunions. where I went don’t. no one wants to relive those days. I will never forget the cruelty of those ‘people of God’. they were especially mean to little indian kids. beatings were common. they would call us ‘pagan babies’ or little savages.

over the years I met others that went to the same boarding school. many were alcoholics or drug abusers. I met some during my militant days. most of them were embittered about how they were treated. most had returned to their native ways.

when I worked in prisons as a spiritual advisor I met a guy I went to first, second and third grade with. he asked how I was doing what I was doing and he was doing 30 years for what he did. I didn’t have the answer. others from our school also ended up in prison. I heard of many others meeting violent deaths.

I could go on about boarding school. but I don’t. I have written a chapter about it in my book. it wasn’t my whole life. it was merely a chapter of my life. I survived it. I wouldn’t let it define my life.

I too was a bitter angry young man. I went thru days of alcoholism and drug abuse. I was also involved in too many fights. my violent rage came out. I rejected religion. I bummed around the country for years.

over time I came out of all that. once I was on a trip with my mother. we were near the school. she said lets stop there. I didn’t want to but did. after leaving it I also let it go. it was just a place now.

I read once some one was after compensation for boarding school survivors. yeah as if a coupla bucks can undo that experience.

eventually I found spirituality. it replaced my concept of religion. I can empathize with others that went thru the boarding school experience. indeed we are survivors.

went for a ride

bought a trunk full of crooked neck squash

I haven’t been to the Brownville, Nebraska flea market for some time. I have made the two hour drive up there for the past 20 years or so. the grandkids weren’t coming for the week end. mary was meeting some friends for a visit at the pow wow yesterday.

I’m not a die hard pow wow guy. I only go to a few a year. I decided to make a day trip and head to the flea market instead. I needed to cop some road time. I jam out to my music while driving.

when vendors asked me what I am looking for, I say I will know when I see it. they know that feeling. I didn’t find much on this trip. I bought some native design decals to pimp out my riding mower. I bought a dozen or so cds. I have to rebuild my song lists.

I could live without the rest of what I seen. my problem is I go to too many flea markets, auctions and garage sales. when I see what some thing is priced, I often know if I can get it for a better price.

there weren’t that many stands. it didn’t take long for me to walk the mile long flea market. usually it takes me several hours to see every stand. the nearby Missouri river was up. the parking lot where I usually park was under water. don’t know if that had anything to do with less stands. one vendor thought so.

I wanted to go to the amish town in Missouri while on this trip. the bridge at Brownville was closed. so was the one at rulo. I had do drive back down hwy 75 until I got hwy 36. I took it to st. joe. I crossed over there. that took longer.

I was looking for crooked neck squash. I went to the amish country store. they had some big ones. I bought 10 of them. they are about 15 to 20 pounds each. they filled up the trunk space of my rav4.

I will dry some and donate some for our fall dance. I wont get the perfect weather. it will be cloudy for the next week. and the temperatures will drop to the 60s on Wednesday. I wont let that stop me. I will dry some anyway.

I also bought a 10 pound bag of rolled oats. they are just oats, no additives. mary likes oatmeal in the morning. I got tired of oatmeal in boarding school. I refused to eat it for decades after. I will eat some occasionally now.

I also bought some home made egg noodles. I like chicken soup. these noodles are good when added to a fresh killed chicken. home raised chickens and home made noodles are a great meal.

I got home about dark. I had to drive thru rain on the way back. I was hydroplaneing a few times. the light on my dash board came on a few times. I didn’t need it to tell me my tires weren’t making good contact. I drove thru it eventually. I didn’t even stop to eat supper. I wanted to get home.

i have to walk my two miles before the chiefs game. i have tickets to the next game.

end of the month

yesterday I walked for the fourth time in the past 8 days. I guess I am now into a routine. once I start I can keep it up. the trick is to get started. and the trouble is getting my routine interrupted. once that happens it’s hard to get going again.

my health is my responsibility. I am determined to keep up my walking. I am walking on the paved road near my house. I have to walk up my graveled driveway to get onto the pavement. I walk for two miles each walk. once the weather changes i will start walking on the tread mill in my basement.

the grandsons wont be here this week end. they have a birthday party on Saturday night. that leaves me with an open week end. don’t know what to do with that. I have plenty of chores to keep me busy.

I didn’t get any crooked neck squash this year. I planted many hills but none made it. some sprouted and that gave me hope I would get some. didn’t happen though. now I will have to buy some to dry. I bought some from an amish town in Missouri a few years ago. they had big squash for half the price of what they go for in topeekie.

I saved the phone number of the amish country store. I called it a week or two ago. the manager said he would have some crooked neck squash by the end of this month. I will call again to see if they have some. if they do I will go after them.

it is a two hour drive to this town. it is worth it because I gotta have my dried squash. the last time I bought 20 pound squash for $2.50 each. I had 10 of them. I was able to dry about 200 pounds of squash. that is enough to last me the whole year.

i took my computer back to the shop. it froze up a coupla times. they couldn’t find anything but an error message. it had something to do with attaching something with a usb. that was my printer. i was told to leave it off and see what happens.

i am having no problem since not connecting my printer. great now my printer is gone. it isn’t a year old. i don’t use a printer often. i use it more to scan things into my computer.

i lost some of my songs while i had computer problems. i haven’t been able to recover some. i am reloading songs from my cd collection. i am afraid i will end up losing some songs that i don’t have on cd. bummer.

i have been watching the news. now there is a hearing going on. i am amused how the congress people are acting so pious. like they are protecting the American people. they haven’t been doing anything but protect their self interests. the bureaucracy hides behind laws they write. people in power can get away with anything they do. they have a different justice than the rest of us. will keep an eye on the news to see what happens.