heat wave

seen some new buffalo calves that were born this spring. had to get a picture even if i was far away.  i kinda miss seeing a big herd. the tribe sold some of our buffalo. i know buffalo need more land to graze on but it was nice  seeing a big herd.

i ordered two more books on quillwork. the two new books only cost 5 bucks each. i am looking for more. the one i already bought about quillwork on birch bark wasnt so much instructional as it was pictorial art. i want to learn how add quillwork to a fan i have. i seen an old fan with birch bark on the handle.

i have dyed quills with dye i used on deer tails for my roaches. i had a coupla hides someone sold me. i plucked the quills off myself. first i had to soak the hide to loosen the quills. i have a supply of quills on hand now to practice trying to do quillwork.

the reason i want to mess with quills is i have opportunities to buy quills. i get asked that from trappers who want to sell me their porcupine hair.  they have the porkys already just need a market for the quills. they ask me how much i would pay. i never know how to respond to that.

porcupine quills from the indian supply houses cost too much for my taste. those places always charge too high. they know the indian market has to take it or leave it. thats why i will try to buy from trappers. we cut out the middle man. i would buy all the quills from several porcupines if i got a good price. the trappers toss them otherwise.  i will see this next season.

i have been watering my plants from the rain barrels. i also use the garden hose for my raised beds. i want to keep my plants alive in this coming heat. they are predicting a heat index of 105 to 110 degrees today. i do my chores in the morning or evening.  i will stay inside with the central air on. we lived a lifetime without it. now it is nice to have.

i havent caught any more raccoons. its been over a week and a half. i still cage the chickens at night. just in case. i am getting about 3 eggs a day. i think i have 2 roosters and 9 hens. production should go up soon i am guessing. i noticed the chickens roosted on the small roosts i put up for chicks. they will learn.

i was talking about a mail in ballot. i did get one in the mail for the primary election. i forgot i sent that it. i believe it was online. i will probably send for a mail in ballot for the november elections now. if i can vote from home i will.

i continue to be disappointed with my internet. i had to buy a hotspot so the kids could play their games. then i bought a wifi repeater that was suppose to help with our slow internet that kept dropping signal. it didnt. granted i did buy a cheaper model. i thought if it worked i could upgrade later. nothing happened with it.  i call the internet people but it seems they dont really give a damn as long as they get paid.

gonna stay cool today.

comet, chickens n mail in ballot

i took andrew to his baseball game in lawrence last night. the game was at 7:45. the sun was gonna down as the game ended. i wanted to see if i could get a picture of the comet that is passing by. no luck seeing that. it was cloudy in the northwest. i did get this red sunset picture though.

i have been out every evening trying to see this comet. it has been cloudy almost every night. i know i wont be around in 8 thousand years when it comes back. next week it is suppose to be visible with out binoculars. i will have my nikon ready.

another raccoon got into my chicken house a few days ago. it killed 2 chickens. since then i have put the chickens into a cage for the night. the coon cant break into that cage. i let the chickens out in the day. it only takes about ten minutes to cage them or let them out.

i have to patch the hole in the roof where the coon got into. it is the plexiglass that lets light in. it gets brittle and thus breakable. i will cover it with corrugated sheet metal. i need to replace a couple of boards and maybe the door too. more work to do.

i am thinking i will fatten these chickens up to butcher them. they are a hybrid. they were raised in a pen. they dont know how to roost in the roof rafters. nor can they fly up to the nests i built to lay their eggs.  they will become soup. dumb chickens. thats why i prefer heirloom breeds like rhode island reds, barred rocks or buff orpingtons.

`this corona virus is proving it is not a hoax. positive cases are going up, not flattening out. human lives are the sacrificial pawns to get the economy going. records for positive cases are being set daily over the past week or two. forget the second wave, the first wave isnt over.

now our government is pushing to open schools under the threat of holding back funding if they dont open. nothing has been done to make kids safe from school shooters so that isnt a big surprise. we are the country that has locked up kids at the border for a few years. that lack of humanity shows how much we care for kids.

i try playing it safe. it dont matter. many arent wearing masks or practicing social distancing. i have stayed home the past few months. i even stayed away from ceremonies. i am 68 years old and have arthritis. i take pills for diabetes, blood pressure and cholesterol. recently i had to start injecting insulin because of my diabetes. i would be considered a high risk for contacting the virus.

some may wonder why i havent gone. my beliefs are what i live by. they are not in a building or ceremonial ring. my life is what i believe in. i dont have to prove that to anyone. i am trying to stay safe because i have more work to do. i want more years to teach my grand kids.

i dont know if i want to request an absentee ballot for the november elections. i probably will end up doing so. mayetta dont have that many voters. there is never a line in that small town. i have voted since i was 18 years old. i may have missed an election back in my bumming around days.

got to get to my chores.

we aint indians either

they finally will change the redskins name. that is probably because of the social awareness the protests brought to the public. the white house press secretary said a poll showed that 90% of indians didnt mind the term redskin. i must be in the 10% that didnt feel honored. some probably think that the indians at standing rock didnt mind the rubber bullets, tear gas and attack dogs either.

i have worn a redskin or cleveland indian baseball cap before. not that i agreed with it but indians just werent in the public consciousness years back. it was either the savage indian, chief wahoo or tonto that we seen. then came billie jack who didnt even look indian. we had nothing to identify with.

i am a big fan of the kansas city chiefs. i dont know what to make of the name. i have gone to a few of their foot ball games. i never did like the tomahawk chop. nor do i like people dressing up like what they think indians look like. the chiefs organization would show some class if they stopped all that. they are a championship team. act like it.

when i was going to college some dude asked me if i lived on the reservation. i said yeah. he wanted to come take pictures of indians. he said he wanted old people that were real wrinkled. dont know what his thought was but i didnt help him out.

some have asked me about the use of the term reznjun. they said it was a stereotype. i answered that back in my youth i was called a f#$@&+! injun so many times. i got into many fights over that. i know that violence isnt the answer but i did stop some from ever using that term to me again.  i once heard you can say a word over and over until it means nothing. to me the silent prejudice hurt more than any word. people that havent experienced that probably wont get that.

when i was a young lad i thought it would be nice to be a carpenter. i went to take a test to become an apprentice. i scored 98 out of a 100 on the test. the dude administering the test told me ‘thats pretty good for an indian’. without hesitation i said ‘thats pretty good for a white man’. i was kinda radical in them days. i didnt get the job. no one liked uppity indians then.

that wasnt the first or last time i was denied a job because of what i was. i learned to live with that.  some new wave indians think us brown, country indians are dumb and need to get out of their way. that kind of prejudice coming from your own people is the worse.

i get on facebook because it is nice to get away from the real world now and then. i got nominated to show my work for 10 days. at first i was hesitant. then i thought what the hell. i do a number of crafts. i create art with my hands that i am proud of. why not show it. i dont know if i have 10 days worth of work though. if not, i will let it go at that.

i drank a coupla gallons of indian tea so far. i have a big batch of tea curing out. i should have enough to last me until next years picking. it is a good tonic. at my age i will use any help i can get.

got chores to do.

seen a few animals

 

i was driving by the buffalo pen the other day. i stopped to check out the buffalo. i seen one on the top of a dirt pile. i knew then it was a rez buffalo. it was playing king of the hill but no one else really wanted to play. if it was thinking it coulda leapt over the fence. then it woulda spent all its time trying to get back in.

this morning i glanced out my front window and i seen a deer in the yard. might be one of those that nibbled my corn. if any of them are still around this winter, they will end up in a pot. their rawhide will be stretched over a hand drum frame.

i have been missing raising chickens. i fixed that. i seen an ad on craigslist for hy line chickens. that is a hybrid genetically altered to be superior egg layers.  these were 12 to 18 months old and lay big brown eggs. the chickens were 5 bucks each. i took all 13 of them. thank you covid check.

they are a passive breed. that should be good for my grand kids. the grand kids like to go outside and watch the chickens. sometimes they help me gather the eggs.

i would much prefer heirloom breeds like rhode island reds, buff orpintons or barred rocks. none of these were for sale at a good cost. i buy chicks of these breeds because it is cheaper to raise them instead of buying laying hens. i didnt want to wait for chicks to grow so i bought these. i want eggs now.

it was a good sunday drive picking up the chickens. we had to go to baldwin city. that is an hour drive from here. on the way back i stopped at a look out tower south of lawrence. it is about 3 stories high. it is on top of a hill and overlooks the surrounding area. it has a good view. it was a good break from the short drive. we then headed back to the rez.

i nailed a couple of sheets of corrugated metal on top of the chicken house. i seen where the raccoons got in.  the metal covered the holes. while i was working i noticed a couple of the chickens squaring off. it looked like their combs were longer than the rest. they must be roosters. i will keep the dominant one and eat the other.

i dont know if any more critters will come around to try to kill these chickens. i trapped 3 raccoons and one possum. i had traps set for the past week. i havent caught anything. i am hoping i got the chicken killers. i went ahead and bought these new chickens because i gotta take a chance every thing is alright. only one way to find out. i will keep traps set.

now i add feeding and watering chickens back to my list of daily chores. it is worth it to  me. i would rather eat fresh eggs instead of store bought. fresh always taste better. some say they dont notice the difference. i can sure taste it. thats why i raise chickens.

it was a good day. start of a new week.

got some rain

i have watermelons forming. i have 4 hills of them. each hill has 4 plants. my cantaloupe are flowering. they will form next. i have 4 hills of mexican kickapoo squash. i also noticed some growing in the rows of corn. i will dry any that i get.

i haven’t seen crooked neck squash though. if i dont get any crooked necks i will have to buy some to dry. i have been getting them from an amish town over in mizzourah. i get a good deal on them. they usually have 20 pound squash.

we got a little bit of rain recently. we needed it. my corn was curled up from the  heat. the  ground had big cracks in it. any moisture we get is needed right now. ears of corn have formed. they need rain to grow. last year we had too much heat when the ears formed. they didnt do too good.

the corn has tasseled. if i was really into it i would hand pollinate the corn. it is as simple and taking some of the pollen and applying it to the silk. that would make the ears of corn better. i probably wont get around to that. i let nature take its course.

even though we did get some rain i watered my plants this morning. they are doing good because i have been doing that. i try to use water from the rain barrels up. when it rains it will fill the barrels up again. that is free water. it is better than the hard water we get from our tap.

i have to fill up my humming bird feeders again. i quit using the red nectar stuff they sell. i read it wasnt good for the birds. i can accept that. i use plain sugar and water to fill up the feeders.

gardening has kept me busy during this corona virus thing. i am still staying close to home. it looks like the number of cases is continuing to rise. when i do have to go somewhere i noticed that many dont wear masks. i do and get a few looks over it. i dont care. i have gotten looks most of my life. got past that one long ago.

i have been surprised by a couple of court decisions. the supreme court kinda said half of oklahoma is reservation. and a district court ruled the dakota access pipeline must be shut down and drained. i feel both are shockers. not often indians win a case in court. some lawyers get fat off tribes with out ever winning a case.

i am down to my last canning jar of hot sauce. my habanero peppers and tomatoes better come in, i will need another years worth of hot sauce. i put it on most every thing. i went to the place i bought several flats of tomatoes from last year. i seen the long grow house wasnt covered. the field had no tomato plants. i went to the veggies stands on lower silver lake road. they too are closed. the small time grower is getting knocked out of business.

got more chores to do.

plants doing good

the plants in my grow boxes are hanging in there with this heat. i have been watering them. i use a garden hose or i water from the rain barrels. the garden hose is easier to use but i get my steps in by using the watering can. i dont know how many trips i make from the rain barrels to my plants.

my field garden is doing good too. it is too big to water but so far we have had enough moisture to keep everything alive. i picked more green beans and new potatoes before breakfast.  gotta do that before the heat kicks in. it is suppose to be 100 degrees today. i do most of my chores in the morning or evening when it aint as hot.

i weeded all the grow boxes. i also added straw as mulch. gotta keep the moisture in when i water. i have been watering to keep my plants alive. that is paying off. it is getting hotter but my plants are healthy. they can stand up to some heat. i will keep watering them.

the ears are forming on my indian corn. it is tasseling and the ears have silk. thats good because the farmer on the next plot is growing corn and it isnt yet. that means mine wont cross breed with the field corn. gotta keep it pure white.

my habanero and bell peppers are forming. the jalapenos and anaheims havent yet. they will. i added epsom salts around the plants to encourage more fruit on the plants. i grow alot of peppers to use as seasonings. we use them in our cooking.

my kale is still growing. i use it in my juicing. we make kale chips out of it too. and we put it in our cooking. we add it to soups and fried potatoes. sometimes we add it to scrambled eggs.

i have tomatoes forming but none ripening so far. i might drive to topeekie to check on that place i bought from last year. we had some tomatoes to eat but not enough to can. i am running out of hot sauce. i want more. we also can salsa and plain tomatoes. i think i bought 4 flats last year. i would again.

i am noticing small trees growing in my yard, garden and grow boxes. they musta started from acorns or maple seeds. i havent pulled the little trees. i will let them grow. undecided on whether i should transplant them or not. i have good shade in my yard from trees i have planted for the past 35 years. i dont think i have 35 years to watch these small ones grow to that size.

i havent caught anything in the traps lately. dont know if my critter problem is solved or not. i do want to get some chickens. that farmer i talked to has some that are 4 months old. they would lay in a month or two. i can still get eggs this fall and winter. i suppose if i get some, i can still set traps. i am anxious to raise chickens again.

days of summer

i havent been catching anything in the traps. dont know if i caught all the the varmints that killed my chickens or not. i wont get any more chickens until i am sure they will be safe. i do miss having chickens. out of habit i feel like going out there to feed them or bring in the eggs. but there aint any.

we are out of our eggs now. we will have to buy fresh eggs from some where. its a good thing that there are people that still raise chickens. like me they sell their extra eggs. farmers markets always have fresh eggs for sale too.

i recently upgraded to another phone. now i have a X S. it is not the latest phone but it is a new phone. it aint a pre owned.  i like the camera on it. it zooms out good. i need a phone that takes good pictures. it is nice to have a camera handy when that one shot presents itself.

it took some time for my old and new phones to transfer data to each other. i had almost 2000 pictures on the old phone. i backed them up to an external hard drive. i told the phone guy i didnt need them. he said they would transfer anyway. he missed the point of me not wanting to wait for that to happen. it took all day and it wasnt done. i finally had to power off the phone. then it started working after a day. now its okay.

my rabbit beans are doing real good. not so with my mattwaoshe beans. i only have one plant of them. i replanted after soaking some of those beans. they still didnt come up. i might not get any mattwaoshe beans this year. i tried to start some sage from seeds but they didnt do well either. nothing came up in this early heat.

i weeded my sema patch last night. it wasnt too bad. i have kept up with it. i will till in between the rows. that is so i can hill it up. that will prevent the rain or watering i do from running off. i have been watering my plants to keep my plants alive.  they are getting bigger. these plants thrive on heat.

i have been watering my tomatoes too. i have some fruit forming. thing is the temps will be in the 90s all week. the best temps for tomatoes to ripen is around 80. the heat may interfere with a good crop. gardening is a gamble. i never know what or if i will get anything.

i am lucky i got my early crops in. i have put away kale, strawberries, black berries, potatoes, green beans, cabbages, peas and onions. i still have bell peppers, jalapenos, habaneros, anaheim peppers, leeks and cucumbers in my grow boxes. and i have more onions growing. so far i am having good luck. hope that holds up.

i gotta do my chores before it gets hot.

fourth of july

they are finally cutting the hay on my misho’s allotment. the farmer that rents this land musta been in a patriotic mood. he wrapped the bales in a red, white and blue covering. we were coming back from our two mile walk and i wanted a picture by a bale.

i get a small check for my share of the hay taken off this land. i dont get as much as the renter of the land. indians get a small pittance compared to them. the government protects the interests of the farmers instead of the land owners. things havent changed much.

we have been walking 8 miles a week for the past 4 weeks. we did 6 miles the week before these weeks. we have been logging some miles. this morning we went walking before breakfast. we wanted to walk while temps were in the 70s instead of the 90s.

there is an old country saying about corn  being ‘knee high, by the fourth of july’. mine is there and then some. it is about 5 feet tall. it is already tasseling too. they are predicting a 60% chance of rain tonight. that would be good for my corn. it needs that rain when the ears of corn are forming.

my vines crops are spreading out. the watermelon plants have little watermelons on the vines. i will prune some off. it is better to have a few strong melons instead of many smaller ones. my cantaloupe plants have vined out all over. the mexican kickapoo  squash is doing good too. i like the taste of that squash.

i picked a big pan of fresh green beans. we ate some and froze some. we put away not quite a gallon of them. we will get more pickings of them. i also dug up some new potatoes. they were the red ones. the yukon gold didn’t do well. we will get some of them though.

i havent seen any menashkuk in the ditch. it is usually flowering by now. i pick it when it is ready. i use it when ever i have a sweat. i havent been doing them that often. i wanna redo my lodge over. the willows are ready to be cut. i was waiting for the hay to be cut. thats another chore i have to do.

we ordered propane. the gas company said it was the cheapest price they had in a long time. it was $1.15 a gallon. when i was young we didnt have electricity. now i cant live with out central air. the heat is coming and i want to be comfortable in my home. if i am working outside it is nice to come in and cool off when i am done.

i will mow the yard today. the grass isnt that high but it needs cutting. i am not sure of how much gas i have. i might have to run to nation station. it will take me an hour to mow. i want it done before it gets hot. we are having a cook out late afternoon. i want the lawn mowed. it looks nice when it is.

gotta get busy.

we picked blue berries again this year

we went blue berry picking yesterday. the day before i turned on my computer and seen the berry place had some slots open for picking. this was an hour later. i added my name as fast as i could.  i got in. the time slots fill up fast. during straw berry season i didnt see sign ups until 15 minutes after they were posted. all times were full by then.

i was lucky i got a time to pick. not only that but the day was cloudy. the temperature was in the mid 70s. it was cool while we picked. we didnt even break a sweat. the weather man has predicted that we were to have 90 degree weather that eventually turns into 100 degree weather for the next 10 days.

we took my great niece kekakwe.  i had the honor of  giving her an indian name.  long ago a namer and the one named used to have a bond. i try to follow that. i am close to my niece because she was the first one i named. she hung out with the old people for half a day. we visited thru out our time together.

usually they transported pickers to the field in a wagon pulled by a tractor. sort of a hayrack ride. that was part of the experience. now they are practicing social distancing. we wore masks around other people but not while picking. we were outdoors. we had to walk to the fields. no big deal. mary and i have been walking as much as we can.

we had a row to ourselves. the blue berry bushes werent real full. they had a previous picking on monday. we picked for a couple of hours. i picked 5.4 pounds of berries. my berries cost me $24. i also bought two pints of pre picked black berries and a dozen blue berry donuts. the grand kids will eat them up.

i have starting juicing again.  i juiced regularly then i fell out of my routine. fresh vegetables are in season. i stocked up on them. some say you dont get the benefit of roughage by juicing. maybe. but i dont eat as many fresh vegetables as i should. i can drink a glass of them with no problem.

i upgraded my phone to an X S. it isnt the newest one but it is a new phone. the 8 i have isnt loading my music. i have to have my music. no music good bye phone. i missed my play lists when i mowed. and when i drive. i have to go to town to have the sprint store upload all my data to my new phone. i copied my pictures to an external hard drive. my music is already gone.

the grand sons are coming for their week end visit. i suppose misho will have to buy fireworks. they get a kick out of them. that will cost a few bucks. they dont like the kiddie stuff. they wanna see the sky light up. that aint cheap.

i gotta head to town to get my phone switched over.

eating my veggies

i picked some of our new potatoes and green beans. mary cooked them with some bacon and chicken broth. the broth is from the chickens we cleaned. she added some of our onions.  the fresh green beans and new potatoes tasted real good. my gardening is paying off. i get to eat fresh vegetables that i grew.

i caught another raccoon. felt no pity for the critter as i said ‘say hello to my little friend”.  then i offed it. the raccoons wiped out my chicken herd. they didnt even eat all of the chickens. it was like they just killed them. a lot more ruthless than me.

it was caught in the dog proof trap. my new live cage was empty. i got my new dog proof trap but it aint got the anchor to it. i gotta rig it to stay in place while the critter is caught. or order the missing part from the place i bought the trap from.

i am not gonna replace my chickens just yet. i will rebuild my chicken yard. the poles holding up the fence are leaning in. it dont look pleasing to my eye. i will straighten it out. i have to cut down the mulberry tree that they climb upon to get to the roof of the chicken house too. i want to see how many i catch first. when it tapers off, any chickens i get will be safer.

we walked 2 miles last night. we heard it would be 100 degrees today. didnt think we would walk in that.  we walked 30 miles this month. thats our best month in some time. now we gotta keep it up.

i have been saying i wanna hit the weights. its rare i go into the basement during the summer. i gotta force myself to lift. i dont get into it that much. i mainly do it to burn more calories. and they say that strength training helps old people in a number of ways.

my worm farm still has worms. i have been trying my best to take care of it. had it for 3 and a half weeks. i add food when necessary. i belong to several groups dedicated to worm composting. i read up on tips and how to on these sites. i am big into learning about things i have an interest in.  it is getting hotter. i moved the worm bin to the basement. dont want the coming heat to kill my worms. it will be in the basement this winter anyway.

i ordered a book on doing quillwork on birch bark. i am making a fan. some dude traded it to me for a roach years ago. i have been wanting to fix it up. i decided i wanted a birch bark handle. that is an old style you dont see often. underneath it will be rawhide to strengthen the handle. i want a simple design on it. i will practice on scraps until i am sure of my quill technique.

i had my doctors appointment. my numbers are going down. that is the right direction. the doc upped my dosage of meds.  she said she would see me in 3 months. that is good news. i will keep trying to improve my health by walking, eating better etc.

last item on my bucket list is to live long enough to be a crabby old man. but i said i wouldnt be mean when i am old. i will go out with a smile. hell yeah