made it to sugar creek again

we had our own caravan to sugar creek yesterday. mary and I took Andrew and Samuel with us. joe and sas took our grand daughters kinikwe and miamikwe with them. we made it a family outing.

I have been to sugar creek about 5 times. each time I came in from a different way. I relied on gps to get there this time. the last time I went there with gps guiding me I was taken over 20 miles of graveled roads. not so this time. it was all pavement.

we arrived just before supper. we had time to walk down the trail to see what they call the indian well. according to the sign by the well, it was dug and rock cased two years before the potawatomi arrived. the indians didn’t know they were going to be forcibly removed from their homelands but plans were made for their arrival to sugar creek. the well was used during the decade potawatomis lived at sugar creek.

we walked along the trail where the nun the potawatomi called ‘the woman who always prays’ lived. she later was canonized as a saint. no doubt she witnessed many of the potawatomi dying around her regularly. there probably was nothing she could do but pray.

before and during supper I was able to visit with the ones on the caravan I knew. I knew about 10 of them. I also visited with almost everyone else gathered at sugar creek. they were all friendly and open to talking.

I was glad my son and grand children were able to be present where some potawatomi history occurred. I want them to know about  history. often I hear people recite potawatomi history that is incorrect. they must only hear what they want. or perhaps they are averse to saying ‘I don’t know’.

I heard some say the prairie band were on the trail of death. they don’t know that the ancestors of what became the prairie band came from the Chicago area. the indiana potawatomi were the ones forced marched on the trail of death.

various bands of the potawatomi intermarried over the years.  a percentage of the prairie band do have citizen band blood in them.  it is true that some of the prairie band roll  have ancestors that were on the trail of death but it is from their citizen ancestors.

we were among the last ones to leave sugar creek yesterday. the caravan was on the road for about a week. I imagine they were anxious to get home. our grand kids wanted to play on the playground. it took some doing to get them to leave.

we stopped at the Haskell pow wow. we didn’t stay long. they were having a giveaway that was taking up some time. the boys were tired so we left. by the time we got home we all went to sleep. it was a good day trip.

back on da rez

got back on the rez in time to eat catfish at the dance ground. it was a fund raiser to help pay for our utilities and insurance. I had to move around and visit with the older ones. we just have a few left. I make it a point to listen to them.  I like to hear stories about days of old. the ones at our table kept laughing. it is nice to hear the sound of laughter coming from our people.

one of my mothers was at the fund raiser. I told her i went to see my other mother. someone at the table asked ‘other mother’ ? I had to explain I was adopted by 3 different families. I assume everybody knows bout indian adoptions. they don’t.

I said when we got to oklahoma we visited for 10 hours straight. i watched the humming birds that were feeding outside the window. musta been about 10 of them. we even walked a coupla miles to the river while visiting. we had supper and spent the night.  we got up next day and visited another 5 hours over breakfast.

that reminded me of how it used to be around here. I remembered old indians that came to visit misho. they stayed the night and visited again the next day. there was no texting or liking on face book in them days. people actually talked to each other for hours.

I enjoyed my visit in Oklahoma. I was happy to see the old house still there. it is over  120 years old. over the years I had slept a few nights in the old house.  I will never forget the people I knew. I met them when I used to go to ceremonies there.  I respected them because they were good people. they always treated me with respect. I felt honored to have become part of their family.

I bought a couple of small, commercial tanned deer hides from an indian store. I will use them to make miniature drums. I even make little drum stands for them. after I get the deer hides from the meat locker I will make miniature hand drums too. we stocked up on beading and leather needles also.

today I am heading down to sugar creek. they forced marched our indiana potawatomi for over 600 miles to this spot. they ended up in Kansas as part of the indian removal act.  it was called the trail of death because over 40 died on the two month march. the real tragedy is that over 600 of them died over the next decade in Kansas. their unmarked graves fill the land.

I have ancestors that eventually became either prairie band or citizen band. some of my ancestors were on this march. every 5 years there is a caravan that retraces the route. I traveled with them ten years ago. I want to visit with the people I know. I received an email from two of them inviting me to supper. i will go eat with them. it is two hours away so this will be a day trip.

hitting the road again

gonna cop some road time tomorrow. going to mi mother land.  when my mother was pregnant with me she was sent to a government hospital in Okla.  after my birth we came home on a train.

I told someone I will go visit my Oklahoma mother.  that drew  a puzzled look.  I had to explain that I was adopted by three different families, one of which is in Oklahoma.

since I am going for a visit I will have to by pass the indian casinos on the way down. perhaps I will hit a few coming home. this indian still got some per cap left. I can only afford to gamble once in a great while now.  I want to play bingo. I haven’t played at ours in a few months. its kinda pricey if you want to stand a better chance against the ones that play machines with hundreds of cards.

we can take a short road trip. we have most of the work done on the belt we working on. (sigh of relief) got a few more steps and it is finished. it looks good so far. basically the whole thing was redone. I am hoping it lasts at least as long as this one has already. we found a date of 1955 on it. perhaps some one will remember me when they see my name etched into that same board 63 years from now.

I want to be back Friday. they are having a fund raiser for the dance ground. catfish and pugna is on the menu. it will be a free will donation. I hope there is a good turn out. many of our people benefit from what is done at our dance ground.

I got an email saying my book called ‘fear’ has been shipped. I paid for it last week. I will get it Thursday. I will read it when I get home. I read most of the other books about the president. he sure reminds me of some  indian politicians we get.

I started working on my grandsons roach. I said I would make him one before I did any others. I dyed the deer tails and yarn for the base purple yesterday. I will dye some more tails yellow. his outfit will be Haskell colors. or Lakers colors. his bustles will be done in two weeks.

recently I seen someone I used to work with. she used to score free tickets to k u football games. I asked her if she still gets them. she asked for my contact info. I gave her one of my business cards. I knew there was a reason I had them things printed up.

I readily admit I am a fair weather fan when it comes to k u football. I am a die hard basket ball fan though. you have to be a real fan to follow k u football. I did watch the last game on t.v.  I wanted to go to it but didn’t. I should have. they won their second game this season. thus I am back on the band wagon. I want to go to a game now.

I put my name in to have my garden plowed next month. I will move it back to my old spot. it has laid fallow this year.

gotta get everything in order before I take off for a few days.

meat bundle, deer hides, grow boxes

I went to topeekie the other day to buy a pork bundle from the meat locker. I am cutting back on red meat. i usually buy meat from there about every per cap. while there I asked if they save the deer hides when they process deer during hunting season.

the lady said they send them to a place in Nebraska that tans the hides. she asked if I wanted any. I said yeah and asked how much they were. she gave me a price. I told her to save me 5 hides. she asked if I wanted early season or late season hides. late season hides are thicker. I said late season.

I couldn’t guess how many deer hides that hunters on the rez toss every year. i have asked several to save me a hide or two. they never do.  i don’t hunt anymore. that’s why I will have to buy some hides. I need a handful of hides to make drums with. I accumulated a number of hand drum frames. if I sell one drum at my future stand I get my money back.

I drove the back roads home. the narrow two lanes are less hectic than the 4 lanes. I like to take a slow cruise home. I remember when rez indians used the back roads to go to town. some didn’t have a drivers license or insurance. cops always stopped them, knowing that.  racial profiling aint nothing new to us..

I seen a sign advertising a sale off the paved road. I was in no hurry so I took the graveled road. I didn’t see anything I wanted. the old lady acted like she wanted to sell me something.

I asked her if she had any 1 by lumber. she asked what that was. I said like 1 by 4s or 1 by 12s. I said I wanted to build grow beds with it. she said not really cuz she used any spare lumber in her art crafts that she sold. I was bout to leave when she said wait she had something to show me. she pointed out a pile of boards.

they were tongue and groove oak flooring boards that she reclaimed herself. they were 1 by 3 inches I think. some 1 by 4s. she said if I was gonna build grow beds these were oak and they would last forever. she said I could have the whole pile that is pictured for $5. I couldn’t pass up that bargain.

oak flooring is kinda overkill but I admit it will last forever. the lady said she couldn’t drive a nail thru it. I will drill a hole in them and use wood screws. i have oak 2 by 4s from pallets to attach them to. I loaded the boards up. I have enough to fill the space I have left by my other grow boxes. I can add 4 or 5 more grow boxes before next year.

before I left the old lady asked if I need soil. I said well yeah. she said the soil is real black where she keeps her goat.  probably from the manure. she said I could have it if I brought containers to carry it in. I said I would take it. I will put it in the bottoms of the new grow boxes.

even though I had some per cap in my pocket I still tried to save some money when I went to town. the more I save, the more I can spend somewhere else.

happy per cap

happy per cap to me. I get to spend some of this one. i don’t have any bills that come first. my wants are simple. I have said before:  all life is something to eat, something to drink, clothes to wear and a place to stay. don’t get much simpler than that.

i didn’t run to town to spend money as some do. mine goes to the bank and i spend as i need to. it aint how much money you have, it is how you spend what money you do have. i try to spend mine wisely. i prioritize what i need, not things i want.  now and then i will indulge myself like a steak dinner or gambling.

I had my lab tests and med check this morning. my blood sugar is in acceptable range, my blood pressure is in good range. i can live with that. i walked about 28 miles in the past month. that paid off.

i got a couple of shots. one was for shingles. i had one in 2013. it is good for 50% prevention. this new one is good for 90% prevention.  i had to have the shot because of what i heard about shingles . i also got one that had something to do with preventing pneumonia. i figure why not be on the safe side.

i did go for breakfast after i was done. they are having the every per cap flea market at the old bingo hall. i got in some visiting while eating my breakfast. you live long enough, you get to know a lot of people. i try to stay on good terms with everyone. aint mean like some try to be.

I ordered the book fear on Tuesday. I havent received word that it has shipped yet. don’t know what the holdup is. I want to read the book before all the content is leaked in the press. I want to read it in context.

my corn stalks are all yellow. that makes the green vines of the indian beans stand out. I seen some with bean pods. some are flowering. I don’t know when a killing frost will hit. I am hoping for a crop of indian beans. I gave away many of my beans as seed for others. I want some to eat.

i am heading to visit my Oklahoma mother this coming week. i plan on hitting an indian bingo hall down there. i haven’t played in a long time. i will also stop at an indian supply house on the way back. stock up on supplies.

i will go to topeekie this afternoon. my chickens need feed. i also want to run by the meat locker and get a pork bundle. the whole hog we had processed is about gone. while at the locker i will ask them if they get any deer hides during deer season. i have asked local hunters to save me hides but they don’t.

this indian heading to town with some coin in his pocket.

had lunch, ready to hit the road

we had our picture taken the other day. it was for grand parents day at the day care. we went to eat lunch with our grand daughters Estelle and Cecelia. we use their indian names too besides their English names. they know and answer to both.

I have been working on the feathers for the belt we are redoing. every one of them have to be replaced. I had to make sure we had enough feathers. once I had all of them I was able to fix them.  I am almost finished with them.  mary can attached them once I am done.  we are glad we are almost done with it.  fall dance is coming up soon.

I will be able to visit my Oklahoma mother this coming week. I wanted to make sure we were going to finish the belt. I know we are now.  I was waiting for my old folks check and later this week my per cap. need them for some road money.

I will get to spend some of this per cap. the last one went toward paying for my new set of dentures. I thought our insurance would cover all of it but didn’t.  I had to pay the balance. that was my extra money so no gambling or traveling lately.

I wanna stop at one of the indian shops in Oklahoma.  we will stock up on some supplies like beads, needles, etc.  we don’t need them often but when we do, we don’t have them. we were lucky we had the same size beads needed on the belt we are working on.

I plan on accumulating inventory for my stand I will have at some large pow wow next year. it will feature my roaches but I need smalls. they sell faster than big items and pay for travel money.  I will work all fall and winter making artwork.

my road trip will be a short trip to Oklahoma. don’t know what I will have time for besides stopping at the indian shop. i plan on being back before Friday the 21st. they are having a fish fry for the dance grounds then. it is a fund raiser to help pay expenses.

i have to mow my yard again. the rain we had made the grass grow. i was hoping it was time to park the mower. not yet i guess. i still have to put the decals on my riding mower.  i bought them at our pow wow.

i have walked twice this week. i think i have logged 26 miles in the past month. that is a good start. i laid off when i had pain in my knee from arthritis. no pain this time.  i will continue to walk on the road until weather prevents me from doing that. i can then start using my treadmill in the basement. i am hoping my lab tests turn out good this Friday.

gotta do my chores.

grandparents day

yesterday was grandparents day.  every day is grandparents day to me. today the daycare has lunch so that grandparents can come eat with their grandkids. we will go eat with our grand daughters Cecelia and Estelle. we ate with them last year. they were happy to see their misho and Nokomis at their school.

temps are cool. mary and I will go walk before we go to lunch with the grandkids. last week we walked 6 miles and 14 miles the previous two weeks. we are making the time to log some miles. passerbys are getting used to us walking our dogs on the road.

I drove my riding mower up to our pond. there is hardly any water in it. the water line is over 5 feet away from the dock. the dock is about 5 feet high and is completely out of the water. this would be the perfect time to clear the silt out and deepen the pond. but I cant afford that. we might lose a good fishing pond as a food source.

I don’t know why the pond hasn’t refilled in the past few years. I realize we haven’t had that much snow melt or rainfall. it might be something else. I notice other ponds are full. there used to be muskrats up there. maybe they have holes in the dike. perhaps the water is just being soaked up into the banks. i don’t know. what I do know is my pond hasn’t filled up in years. we might have lost all the fish in it.

I will have to go check on the paw paws soon. it is hard telling when they will be ready with this weather. might be early or late. or not at all. only way to know is to walk to the timber and look. I like the taste of them but I can only eat so many of them. mary made some paw paw bread with them once, and some cookies. they didn’t taste bad. I pick so many that we have to do something with them. I do give many of them away too.

there is a recording of someone praying in potawatomi being played on the internet. it is attributed to one of my uncles. a link was sent to me so I could listen to it. I had a copy of that particular recording already. I was asked if I thought that was my uncle. I said it didn’t sound like his voice to me. I could be wrong but I remember talking with him often. his daughter thought is wasn’t his voice too. who knows though.

my old folks check is coming in a few days. good. I will order the rest of the spikes and hackles needed for Andrews bustles. and I want that woodward book titled fear. gotta read that. I have to save some bucks to go visit my other mother in Oklahoma. other than that I got no plans.

Andrew asked me when I was gonna make his roach. when he over hears misho talk, he don’t forget. I said I would get to it. the kid don’t know that I am busy most of the time. always got something to do.

fall coming

quite often I wonder if I was kept alive so I could be with my grandkids. if not, it is one of the best reasons I was. I enjoy the time I get to spend with them. it is the reward for living thru the hard times of my life. in my younger days I didn’t think I would live long enough to hear some one call me misho. I am thankful I lived this long.

this past week i was talking to several people my age. we spoke of how the rez has changed in our lifetimes. i commented how the rez aint like it was in our youth. we didn’t have electricity or running water. we had to mizi in an outhouse. rez roads didn’t even have gravel on them. the houses didn’t have storm windows. they had poor insulation. etc.  the rez was different then.

we didn’t get around to cleaning chickens this past week.  that’s okay, they aint going nowhere. we have fed them for the past 5 weeks.  we will continue to fatten them up some more. I will get the best soup back from what I pay to feed them. no soup tastes as good as home made. maybe we will get to cleaning them this coming week.

the rains we have been having made my peppers grow. I have several bushes of habanero peppers. they have so many peppers on them, they are leaning over from the weight. I will have more hot peppers than I know what to do with. my sweet potatoes are growing too. my strawberry plants are putting out more berries. my garden aint done yet. grateful for the rain.

I got a call from my family in Oklahoma. I plan on going down there for a visit. who knows maybe playing bingo somewhere else can pay off. I have been adopted by three families. no matter where I go I have relatives. I am called shisha or misho by a lot of people. I like that.

mary and I plan on fixing part of Andrews outfit when the bustles are done. his family in the southwest want to help make part of his outfit too.  I already planned on making his roach. I will make his spreader too and attached the feathers to it. I am guessing that we will have to make Samuel an outfit after we are with Andrews.

i got to walk a coupla times this week. i laid off about a week during pow wow time. i am back at it again. gotta do this for my health. my quarterly lab and doctor appointment are this week. i am hoping for good results. i think so.

per cap is coming this next week. my old folks check coming too. I cant wait. there are a few things I need to buy. need supplies for my artwork. and travel money. its a good thing my wants are few. I just have to take care of my needs. misho gotta wait to get paid first.


early september

I took this picture of a canadian dancer at our pow wow.  he danced in the wood land special at our prairie band pow wow.

I have a question though. what exactly is wood land style? I seen that some of the dancers ( not this guy)  were dancing the same as when they do northern tradish. are there others besides me that don’t see the difference?

we are suppose to get rain through out this week. we need the water. the ground is wet on top but it is dry deeper down.

the ground needs more rain to soak down where the roots of most plants like the trees are. the cricks (or creeks) aren’t running.  what pools of water there are in the crick beds soon become stagnant water. some ponds are overgrown with algae. I seen one pond that looked like it was green from all the algae growing on the surface. the animals need fresh water to drink.

there is a new book out by bob woodward.  I will order it next week when I get my old folks check. I want to read the book. I have already read a number of books about current politics. I like to read up on or listen to the news. gotta keep up with what is going on.

i was asked when I was gonna finish writing my book. I didn’t have an answer right off. it made me wonder why I aint working on it. I am retired. that is one of the things I had planned on doing. lately I have been busy with making things. that shouldn’t prevent me from setting aside some time every week to my writing.

I will have to make an effort to start writing it again. I had most of a chapter done about my alcohol and drug days. it was a part of my life that was hard to write about. I had it in a notebook but cant find it. I guess the thing to do is just rewrite it. I already have a few chapters done. I do edit it whenever I read it. maybe I change one word here or a phrase there. I will set a goal of working on my book every week.

we are working on the ceremonial belt again. it is coming together pretty good. we have all the feathers we need now. not many want to give up feathers even for ceremonial use. I am thankful to the ones that did. all of the feathers on the belt need to be replaced.

I will go walk on the road. log two miles. I haven’t walked since before pow wow. getting into a good work out routine is always broken up when something comes up. I have to make the time to get back into it.


back to the ‘ol routine

pow wow is over sweetheart. even had a day or two of rest. we had company to feed during the past week.  most have gone home. it is time to get back into my routine.

when you are retired though there aint no routine. you can do what you want, when you want. but still gotta get back into a routine.

indeed, where do I start? I haven’t made a roach in a few weeks. i started two bases of woodland style ones. i need to dye more deer tails for the trim of one. when i am in a routine i can churn them out. i got out of that working on other things and pow wowing.

my grandson’s bustles are about half done. i have to order more spikes and hackles for them. that will take a few days in the mail.  i will make him his own roach. he has been using an old one that i made for his great grandpa. he needs one that will match the colors of his outfit. misho will make his first before i do any other roach.

i have five indian dice sets on order. i will trade some for parts of my grandsons outfit if i can. we will make parts of his outfit too. he is anxious to dance. he is at the stage where dancing is fun.

I did get the feathers we need to finish the ceremonial belt we are working on. i can fix all of them now. i started doing some. my sister finished the beadwork on the leg parts.  mary will finish with the pants part. after i fix the feathers they can be attached and it will be done. sounds easy but it takes time. we will get to it.

we will butcher at least half of the roosters we have been fattening up. that wont take much. mary and I have done it enough times. it will be a days work. not all day but a day will have to be set aside just for cleaning chickens. i want some tortilla soup or chicken and rice. i have stocked up on home made egg noodles from the amish store to cook with chicken.

mary and i have to get back to walking. we walked for 16 miles before the pow wow. now we gotta log some more miles. it is cool enough to walk on the paved road that goes by our house. we will make time to get our exercise in.

we have been getting rain. more is expected this week. i seen my indian beans are growing in the cornfield. some have pods on them. some are flowering. that means they will form bean pods. maybe i will get a crop of indian beans yet. my hot peppers are still growing too. i will get some peppers.

gotta get busy.