saved a few bucks


I found some one to fix my brakes. or my son did. a classmate of his. he is a certified mechanic who works for himself out of his place. i take the car to him today. glad i don’t have to wait a week to make an appointment.

my sons friend will fix my brakes for 50 bucks an axle and I buy the parts. I bought the pads for the front brakes for 46 dollah. I don’t know if I need the back ones yet. if I do, I will go to topeekie to get them. rav4s don’t have brake shoes. good deal.

I remember a good ol’ rez boy that was gonna work on marys car once. he said ‘i’ll get a crow bar and a sledge hammer’. I thought crow bar? sledge hammer? if my life was gonna depend on my brakes i don’t want someone smacking them with a sledge hammer.

saved a few more on my mower. I was gonna move the tree branches I trimmed. I jumped on my mower. it started up and I backed out of my tool shed. then it died. it wouldn’t stay started. it would fire up then die. I thought great. just what I need. I aint got a way to get it to a shop.

my nephew came over with a trailer. he checked it out. I tried to start it. it fired up then died. my nephew checked the gas. it was empty. I went to nation station and put some in. it started up fine and ran. that was embarrassing. all it needed was gas. I swear I seen gas in it when I looked straight down into the tank.

I wont forget the look my nephew had, like I was back on the smoke or something. no no I don’t smoke it no mo. I saved a few bucks by not having to take it to the repair shop.  most places charge you  to just look at it.

my drivers license finally came in the mail. whilst I was at the motor vehicle place I asked the lady if she needed my passport. the website said to bring it as proof of i.d.  so  I took mine. the lady said it wasn’t needed but asked if I had my social security card. I said yeah. she asked if I wanted a real i.d.

I didn’t know what the hell that was. i asked her what it was. she said they put a little star in the corner. when I go to an airport they use it as proof of i.d.  I can get thru lines quicker some times. I said yeah I will take that. I will always travel. lately i have been getting some pre-clearances. must be making up for all the ‘random’ searches i had to go thru. my mild mannered native elder look didn’t work i guess.

I dyed 5 deer tails yellow and 4 black yesterday. while I was dyeing the yellow ones I also dyed some yarn to use as a base.  I will use them on the next roach I make. I finished the last one and wrapped it to shape it. I have 10 roaches done now. I just haven’t posted pictures of all of them on my website. gotta do that next. the photographer in me went tribal. don’t wanna do it right now.

after i drop my car off this morning, i will get started on my next roach.


grateful for the rain

been getting rain when it is needed. that’s how it is with nature. some time you get it when needed, other times you don’t get any rain. you take what you get. been lucky that my crops got the rain. my indian corn is growing good. my indian beans came up. I just planted my squash recently. it should be up this week.

seems I am never done with gardening. I tried starting seeds in flats. most of them didn’t come up. this early heat we had zapped them. I planned on them but didn’t get some veggies. that’s why I had to buy some plants.

I got some good deals on plants. they start getting root bound if they in containers too long. that’s when sellers want to get rid of them. I added 4 more habanero pepper plants. no such thing as too much hot sauce. a lady at a road side stand let me have 3 bell pepper plants for free. I put them in.

I also transplanted cantaloupe, water melon and cucumber plants.  I transplanted the plants before the rains came.  they didn’t go into shock. the only veggie I don’t have is zucchini. I usually have trouble with it. bugs eat the plants up. I aint dealing with that this year.

some guy asked me for sema seed awhile back. I told him he could have any extra plants I had if he would wait. he did. last night he came after some plants. he gave me a squash from the Mexican Kickapoo and some of their purple corn. I thanked him for that.

I told him some don’t understand that you suppose to trade for sema or corn.   I don’t like telling people that because they might think I am shaking them down. I was told if you don’t give anything for them, they aint yours. some just haven’t been taught that. others just feel entitled to every thing for free. part of that fort injun mentality.

I still had some sema plants left after I gave some to this guy. I am glad he took some. I didn’t want these others to go to waste so I added another row in my patch. now I have over 80 sema plants growing. that’s the most plants I had in a long time. wont know how much sema I get until I get it. too many variables to deal with. I will accept what I get.

the hog I bought a few weeks ago will go to market this week. I have to go to the butcher place to tell them how I want it cut up. the pork at grocery stores don’t taste as good as farm raised. I will have bacon, ham, pork chops, roasts and pork steaks. I will also have jowls etc to cook with nenwezhek.

there are times in life when you have to slow down. I found out when I need to put the brakes on, I am getting a metal on metal sound. great. now my old car needs to have a brake job. that is to be expected tho, I had this car for 6 years. never had the brakes worked on. I have to find a good price. I will check out the websites of some dealers. wont know of any cousin jim bobs that would’ve done it cheaper until after the job is done.

got to do more yard work today while the temps are slightly cooler.

last of may, first of june














i am finishing the roach i have been working on. it is another small roach that is 7 and 1/2 inches long. i have a little of the outside trim left to tie. after i sew it to the base it will be done. the outside deer tail trim will be red with a black, yellow and blue rainbow row. this roach has a double row of 6 and 1/2 inch porky hair on the front.

I checked out a few garage sales early this morning. I found 3 small wooden baseball bats for a buck each. I use them to wrap roaches. first I spray them with a light mist then wrap with an ace bandage. that shapes the roaches real good. it makes them look good. the back hair has to fall back some. shaping also bonds the deer tail and porky hair together.

mary bought me a bill self book at one  garage sale. I will read it during some down time. I read every thing I can about Jayhawk basketball. I could answer most trivia questions bout the hawks.

I bought two soaker hoses. I will use them to water my sema. I transplanted some plants into a row.  when they come up, they come up where the seeds land. often there may be a bunch of them growing in one spot. the bigger ones will crowd out the smaller ones. that’s why I transplant them about a foot apart. they grow better without competing with each other.

with the early heat we had, I watered the small transplants every day so they wouldn’t die out. the weather man said this was the warmest month of may ever. the average temperature was 86 degrees. I am hoping the warmest june don’t follow that.

I have to change my t-shirt coupla times a day when I work outside. I am working on getting my yard into shape. I trimmed the low hanging branches. I still have some to pick up and dispose of. I use my riding mower with a cart to haul them in. I aint carrying them individually. that is too much unnecessary work. I once told a young guy working with me to work smart, not hard.

I got my business cards I ordered. they look good. now I need to force them onto people who don’t want them. well not really. I have taken business cards from people who I had no intention of calling or emailing again. my cards are for some one that is serious about wanting a roach.

it is suppose to rain tomorrow morning. or so they say. I will buy into that. (that’s how indians lost america, they believed every thing) I plan on transplanting some sema plants this evening. I try to do that before a rain so I know the ground will have moisture in it. I probably will water the plants for a few days after that. most people cant even begin to understand how much work goes into raising it.

the rain is good for the garden

temperatures around this time are normally in the 70s.  we have been having 80-90 degree days. I have noticed some of my smaller plants got zapped by this early heat. I am getting some strawberries. some are burning up. my onions are doing good. same with my kale and cabbage.

while driving around I check out the fields. some of the corn was wilting. the corn south of me has burnt ends. they are yellow and brown. don’t know what that will mean to the corn crop this year. maybe nothing after last nights rain. it wont be wilting today.

we got a good rain. the ground is soaked. my corn will have a growth spurt this week. i planted indian beans in the corn last week. many of them are coming up.  the rest should sprout this week. this rain will make them grow too.

I was hoping the weather guy was right. before the rain I planted my crooked neck squash in the same rows with my corn and indian beans. it will benefit from the rain and should sprout by next week. glad I got it in the ground. have to work when it is time. if I put it off, I would have missed this rain.

i seen an ad on craiglist about some guy that fixes small engines. i texted his number and asked if he would have time to fix my stihl chainsaw. he said to bring it up. i was there in half an hour. i also loaded up a small cultivator of mine that wouldn’t start. he texted back bout an hour later.  he had the chainsaw running fine. he did quick work.  it was 48 bucks. that aint bad. that was faster and cheaper than taking it to topeekie.

the cultivator needs a new carburetor. parts and labor would bring it to about 70 bucks. he said used ones that are running are selling for $65. i would have more into mine than i could resell it for. i passed on getting it fixed.

i picked up my chainsaw. soon as i got home i fired it up. i trimmed the branches of my trees in the yard. i have to do that every few years. i planted about 30 trees over the years. some have grown over 30 to 40 feet high. some of the branches hang down. they are what i need the chainsaw for. now when i mow i would have to deal with low hanging branches knocking off my hat or head phones. gotta have my jams while I work.

on the way home i seen a road side stand.  i stopped at it because it advertised tomatoes. i was surprised they were ready this early. the lady at the stand sliced off a piece of the tomatoes for me to try. it was good. i bought some.  i asked how they had some so early. she said they grew them in a hoop house kind of structure in the field. they grew the tomatoes in missourah.

some of my tomatoes are flowering, others have small tomatoes forming on them.  this rain will help them.  when I got home I cut  up a fresh tomato and tossed it in a salad. it was good. I want mine to grow now. I have been watering them. cant beat home grown veggies.

new mower

maybe I am on craigslist too much. or not. i am shopping for a tiller, building materials etc. I found a new (to me) push mower. I have a big yard. my riding mower cuts most of it. I need a push mower for areas my riding mower  cant reach, like by the chicken house, behind my tool shed, in the sweat lodge area, around trees  etc.

I seen this craftsman gvc 160 with a honda high performance motor. the self propelled mower has an equivalent of 5 and 1/2 horse power. it has a 21 inch cut. couldn’t beat the price. it was 1/3 the price of a new one. I had to check before I drove an hour away to get this mower.  I try to save money so I can buy more things. i need to save for another tiller.

the guy that sold it works on mowers, tillers, cars  etc. some lady couldn’t pay him. she said all she had was this mower for payment. he took it and advertised it on craigslist. he said the mower needed carburetor work but fixed it. he priced the mower to sell.  I am happy with it. he started it on one pull. it is called an ez start. hell yeah. spoil this old guy.

seems like there are too many spring chores to keep up with. well really they are there all the time. its during spring that I choose to do them. I started to trim my tree branches in the yard. some hang low. I have to duck under them when I mow. i am tired of having my hat or head phones knocked off. I cut most of the smaller  branches with a hedge clipper yesterday.

I will need a chainsaw to cut a few branches. I have some pin oaks in the front yard that have low hanging branches. they are too thick to cut with a hand saw. I have an old stihl chainsaw that wont start. I may have to take it to the repair shop. I will be able to trim all the branches with that. I shouldn’t have a problem mowing for the rest of the season.

speaking of mowing. I ordered a car hood ornament. it is an eagle. I will put it on the hood of my riding mower. I try to pimp out my mower because I spend so much time on it during mowing season.

i thought of my brother larry today on memorial day. i am glad i made a donation to the memorial wall for wounded veterans. his name is one of those on the wall. i think of my bro a lot. we seen some tough times together. i read his book now and then. i have so many more memories of him besides what’s in the book.

glad i mowed the yard. we are cooking out for supper tonight.

picked more nenwezhek

got in some more walking by picking more nenwezhek. I picked two big bags of them. we washed them, diced them up and blanched them. mary canned 12 quarts of them. we froze a gallon.

we have 3 gallons in the freezer and 3 gallons canned. that should last us awhile. we can eat half a gallon a month until they come up next year.

mary put on some potato soup while we worked. I added some of the flower buds from the nenwezhek to the potato soup. we used to do that long time ago. it adds a different taste to the soup. mary also added some ringed baloney that gave it a smoked flavor. after we were done putting away the nenwezhek I ate two big bowls of the potato soup. it was so good. we were so busy we didn’t make any cowboy bread to go with it.

the repair shop called me about my tiller. it wasn’t good news. the motor is shot. it would cost a thousand to fix it up. the guy said it would be cheaper to buy a new one. I agreed. I asked if I would have to come get it. they said they would get rid of it. maybe it could be parted out but I don’t wanna mess with it. it was made in 1978. that’s 40 years old. those old troy bilt were made to last.

I don’t want a new troy bilt. the garden program I used to work in bought new ones and two of them didn’t pan out. the company couldn’t fix one and wouldn’t cover the other. the new tillers cost over $2700. what are the odds I got two lemons. my old tiller I used at home out-performed them easily anyway.

now I will look at auctions for another used troy bilt. I want one of the older work horses. they last longer. I think I had mine for about 10 years. or longer I don’t remember but I do know it lasted longer than a couple of new ones I had. I have had a garden at my home for the past 33 years. I went thru a few of them.

I remember the first year I moved into this house. I wanted a garden so bad that I turned the ground over with a shovel. that took some work but I had a good garden. I got a gallon of corn from each row I planted.

today we are heading to the Brownville flea market. it is in Nebraska. it is a two hour drive and takes a few hours to cover the whole flea market. it is a mile long. we go up one side and then back the other side. my feet will be tired when I get home with my treasures. don’t know what I will buy but I am sure I will find something. gotta hit the road.

planting indian beans.

my indian corn is looking good. most of it has germinated. I am happy it is growing. I had new ground plowed up last fall. it was tilled  this spring. the corn should do good in this spot. it is on a slight slope for better drainage when we get heavy rains. too much rain can drown it.

you cant have corn until after you plant it. now I wait and hope for the best. hope I get rain when I need it, hope I get sunshine when I need it, hope it aint too hot when the corn is forming,  etc.  When I get my tiller back from the repair shop I will till the weeds out in the middle of the rows when they come up.  I have learned to accept what I get. if I don’t get anything, it wont be because I didn’t put in the work.

yesterday I planted indian beans in every row of corn. now I have 16 rows of indian corn and 16 rows of indian beans. they are growing in the same rows.  I came in for a cold drink and Andrew asked what I was doing. he had to help me plant the last few rows. he likes to help his misho.  next week I will plant my squash in these same rows.

I had to water my strawberries. the 80 to 90 degree temps this early in the season is kinda too warm for young plants just starting out. I have straw in the grow boxes as a mulch covering. I noticed some leaves wilted. that’s why I watered the plants.

I was worried my sema wasn’t coming up. i have been checking on it the past week or two. I was sowing some seed to make sure i get a crop when I spotted plants coming up. guess i just needed a little patience.  I may have a bunch of plants when the seed sprouts. that’s okay. someone  asked me for some seeds. i told them they could have my extra plants.  I am glad someone wants to try to grow it.

I ordered 500 business cards. I want them in case someone asks me about my contact info when I do finally put up a stand at some pow wow or gathering. I ordered the cards from the internet. I designed the card off one of their templates. I put a picture of one of my roaches on it. the cards will be delivered to my home.

I did some spring cleaning in my carport. don’t know many indians that use this space as a garage. I only parked in there a few times. it is mainly a work and storage area. my dogs hang out in there too. I have to do cleaning occasionally to be able to find tools I need and I need workspace for certain jobs.

this weekend I am going to the Brownville flea market. it is a mile long. I walk up one way and back the other way. my two mile walk takes me a few hours because I have to see what junk, I mean treasures, that are out there. vendors will ask me what I am looking for, I tell them I will know when I see it. they say they know that feeling.

going to Brownville will be a day trip. I plan on leaving early. i go to this flea market almost every year. looking forward to going again.

new shirt, new license

i like the ribbon shirts my cuz made for me. pictured is the yellow one. i like the pleated front and having a collar on it. the white shirt is similar to this one. they are kinda roomy but i like that too. this old guy can work up a sweat dancing all day.

our mailman must think i am a recluse. he has to deliver many things i order. i am not a shut in. i like having things delivered to my home. i am not one for shopping. if i go to a store i head straight to what i am buying, get it and head to the cashiers. once i pay for it i go home. with the internet, i can click on what i want,  hit the button and have it sent to me without having to go to town.

yesterday another otter case for my iPhone was delivered to me. i bought it off amazon. i like that site because they also list used. i got this case for 8 bucks. it looked almost new to me. my grandson messed with the one i paid over $20 for. i couldn’t shut the tabs for the charger and head phone ports. he broke them and peeled part of the rubber case off, so i needed a new case. i get a lot of things delivered to my home. i like that convenience.

one thing i wont have delivered is my drivers license. it was due for renewal on my birthday a coupla weeks ago. i am not forgetful. i was busy and spaced it out. now my license is expired. i will have to go town to get it renewed. i wont have to deal with that again for another 4 years. its a good thing i wasn’t stopped for speeding.

my corn is several inches tall. i can plant my indian beans in the corn rows now. the ground is still wet from the last rains we had. it might be kinda muddy. that wont stop me. i want to plant the beans while there is moisture in the ground. the heat causes the moisture in the ground to rise. the seeds pick up this moisture and it helps them germinate. next week i will plant my squash and pumpkins.

i still see commonalities between national politics and politics in indian country. our president can do anything he wants. there is no one to hold him in check. we get some leaders like that too and no one can do anything about them. they use the system to get away with everything. if anyone questions the president, he attacks them and tries to discredit them. indians do that too.

the president wasn’t elected by the majority of eligible voters. only 40 per cent of the voters voted him in. the non voters had an effect on the election by not voting. our politicians aren’t elected by a majority either. we have over 2000 eligible voters. maybe 900 is the most that will vote. sometimes not even that many vote. too many have given up on the system. our non voters can play a part in our elections by saying no the ones that wont work for us. they haven’t grasped the concept of voting out the worthless ones. the majority of our people don’t elect anyone.

i always hold out hope we elect people that will work for us. occasionally we get some that know how to use the system and never show up for work. if they aren’t there, they cant do anything for us. we do get a few that only want to grab all they can carry off. the money we make belongs to all of us. not to just a few that know how to manipulate it for their own gain. wish we could elect some that want to do the most good.  it isn’t possible to please everyone so we might have to settle for the most good. we will see in a few months.

finished another roach head dress

i finished my latest roach. it is a small one. the kind that some wear with otter hats. i imagine some could wear it as a roach too. this one has a double row of 7 inch hair. the inside deer tail trim is red. the outside trim is blue with a rainbow row of yellow, black and red. i may make a few more roaches this size.

i went to a picnic at Clinton lake Friday. it was for a nephew who graduated from haskell. i teased the young graduate. i said without an education, the only job you qualified for is tribal council. my nephews laughed. we have stringent requirements for every tribal job. we require no education or experience to be a tribal leader.

while we were waiting for the food to be finished on the grill we seen a bald eagle. it flew over us a few times. it was amusing to see indians act like they never seen an eagle before.

i like it when i see them. kinda reminded me of eating my lunch at lake Shawnee. i was driving around the lake and seen a bald eagle on the south side of the lake. there was a big nest in one of the trees.

i still haven’t heard from the fish and wild life people. i sent off for more loose feathers. they send a post card  in a couple of weeks to say they got the request. not this time. i imagine the pow wow people have so many requests ahead of me. i was gonna use the feathers to help fix up one of our ceremonial belts. it is so old the feathers are kinda rugged. i only have about half of what is needed to replace all of them.

we are getting rains. my tomato plants are doing good. they are flowering. my strawberry plants are having berries on them. Andrew picks them as soon as they ripen. i can use my kale plants the next time i juice. we used fresh kale in our scrambled eggs for breakfast this morning.  some of my radishes are ready. i am always grateful for rain.

i like the sound of thunder. when i use to bum around the country i would hear that now and then. it always reminded me of home. when we were little, my misho used to have us go out and put sema down when we heard it. even if it was raining we had to do it. we got wet many times doing that. i have taught my grand kids to do that.

speaking of my misho, i was over by where his house used to be. out of curiosity i walked around to look for this plant. long ago an old lady told me it was ‘indian spinach’. years later i checked on it and it was gone. it is still gone. i wonder how many of our foods are lost.

i seen a poll a few weeks ago. they ranked college football teams for the coming season. K U’s team was ranked 108th out of 129 teams. so we aint the worst team in the nation. hell yeah. we getting better. we play one team that is ranked lower than us. what? maybe we will have a victory. our coach is 3-33. he is looking at his 4th win. is it too soon to say ‘wait til basketball season’? rock chalk.


going fishing

the day care had their end of year pow wow yesterday. we watched our grand daughters in the morning before it started. joe came to pick them up and we followed them over to the pow wow. i wanted to watch my grand daughters dance.

i am not a fanatic about pow wows. i do enjoy them though especially local ones like this one. i know most of the people attending. i visit with friends and relatives.

we had to sign in if we wanted to win a door prize. bout the second drawing they called my number. i thought damn i won something. i haven’t had any good  mojo at bingo lately.  i chose this righteous Shakespeare fishing pole. a while later marys number was called. she picked the other Shakespeare fishing pole.

we have been talking about fishing.  we sure lucked out when we won these fishing poles. we went to the tribal police station to get a form to send off for our state fishing license. we only need a tribal i.d. to fish on the rez. i want to be able to fish any where in the state. that’s why i went to tribal to get the form. i want to go try at the perry lake spillway and maybe one of the big reservoirs.

i went walking again. i parked at my sisters house. i grew up in my misho’s house that used to be there. i wanted to pick nenwezhek along the road as i walked. i picked two bags full while walking my two miles. mary and i washed them, diced them up, blanched them and put them in freezer bags.

we now have two and a half gallons in the freezer. we haven’t canned any yet. i will still go pick some more. no such thing as this indian having too much nenwezhek. i used to get tired of eating them growing up. i love the taste of them now.

it must be election year. what tipped me off was this one dude. he never talks to me or i think even notices i am in the same room. i ran across this dude and he comes up and shakes hands with me. he asked how i have been. he sounded so sincere. i almost believed he truly cared how i was. until i remembered this is election year. i didn’t even know this guy was indian until after we got a casino. needless to say that guy aint got my vote.

i got a box in the mail today. it was two ribbon shirts made by one of my southern kin. she is very talented and has very reasonable prices.  that’s why i wanted her to make me some new shirts. one shirt is yellow and one is white. they have a pleated front and have collars. both are short sleeves. i really like the shirts. i out grew most of my old shirts. i wanted a different shirt each day when we have 4 day dances.

got a wedding to go to today and a picnic for a nephew that graduated from Haskell. i will finish a roach while waiting for those two things.