After the long hot spell that started early this month, the chilly rains of the past week came as quite a shock. Started wondering, if the hot weather was caused by human factors that created Global Warming, who would the doomsayers blame for Global Cooling? Also feared wed seen the last of an all too brief summer this year.
As it turns out, the chilly days seem to have passed and were headed for a period of beautiful August weather, which is as it should be!
STILL TIME FOR SUMMER FUN
Summer fun is winding down, but not a lot. Flea markets are going full swing, and fresh farm produce is appearing at roadside stands and at farm markets all over the county. Take advantage. Buy locally to save money and eat healthier.
Menominee will be rocking this weekend with the Waterfront Festival starting on Thursday, Aug. 1, complete with food, refreshment and game stands and huge parade and fireworks.
On Saturday Aug. 3, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. fanciers of guns and knives can buy, sell and trade or just look at the annual show sponsored by Netzel-Zenz Post 413 of the American Legion at Crivitz Village Hall. Admission is $4 and just $1 for children under 12.
Silver Cliffs 35th annual fund raising picnic sponsored by the Fire and Rescue Auxiliary will be held at the Memorial Park Picnic Grounds, corner of County C and I in Silver Cliff on Saturday, Aug. 10. Parade is at 10 a.m., with the picnic from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will be music, games, refreshments and a 6 p.m. raffle drawing.
There are still several concerts coming up at parks in Wau-saukee, Peshtigo, Marinette and Menominee.
60 YEARS SINCE KOREA
Hard to believe the Korean War officially ended 60 years ago - on July 27, 1953. Hostilities had begun three years earlier, in 1950. Countless lives were lost, and American soldiers as well as Allies from around the world endured some extremely difficult times. America wasnt really ready for that war. Soldiers were sent off to frigid weather in northern climes without proper clothing or living facilities. Also hard to believe that some of the issues that led to that war - or Police Action as it was often described - continue to plague the world today and Korea remains split into North Korea under a Communist dictatorship that started in 1948, and South Korea, which still struggles to preserve freedom on its share of the peninsula. Back in 1953 the fighting was called off with neither side being an actual winner, but today both sides declare they won a victory.
A huge parade in Pyongyang, North Korea on Saturday, July 27 marked a holiday the North Koreans call Victory Day in the Fatherland Liberation War, although the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a truce and the Korean Peninsula remains technically at war. China was North Koreas only ally in the Korean War, and Chinese leaders were with todays sabre-rattling North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for Saturdays parade and celebrations.
Meanwhile, in Washington, President Barack Obama marked the day with a speech at the Korean War Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, saying the anniversary marks the end of the war and the beginning of a long and prosperous peace.
Here today, we can say with confidence, that war was no tie, Korea was a victory, with 50 million South Koreans living in freedom and a vibrant democracy in stark contrast to dire conditions in the North, Obama said.
He said the U.S.-South Korea partnership remains a bedrock of stability throughout the Pacific region, and gave credit to the U.S. service members who fought all those years ago and to the men and women currently stationed there.
Meanwhile, the issues remain unsettled. Kim Jong Uns North Korean regime was recently chastised by the United Nations for launching a prohibited missile and for continuing attempts to achieve nuclear capability.
Words on the Korean War Memorial in our nations capital recognize that back when the Korean War began that nation was a little known entity in America. It states: Our nation honors her sons and daughters who answered the call to defend a country they never knew and a people they never met...Korea, 1950 to 1953.
Most Americans today remember the Korean War from episodes of 4077 MASH, except those whose loved ones lost lives and limbs to that cold war in a far-away land. Nearly everyone who fought in Korea during the war years would be 78 or more years old today, so the number of those with first-hand memories grows slimmer and slimmer. But obviously, North Korea intends to hold fast to those memories and expand on them.
Which all goes to prove once again that freedom is fragile, and those who would protect it need to remain ever vigilant.
ON THE SOAP BOX
BIG BROTHER IS WINNING
Recall years ago Nikita Kruschev, who was then head of the Communist government in Russia, pounded the table with his shoe in anger during a peace conference at the United Nations, and that on another occation he declared, We will bury you! That threat turned out not to be true, but another of his predictions, that we Americans would eventually bury ourselves, seems pretty close to becoming a fact.
Were busy giving up our liberties in favor of soft lives protected by Big Brother government, which we as a nation once eschewed as Communist rhetoric. We seem not to object to attempts to bring us all down to the lowest common denominator.
We have seen most of our manufacturing move overseas, much of it to Communist China. This includes production of much of the food that ends up on American tables. So much for the day when American children were cautioned to eat all the food on their plates because of the poor starving children in China!
Remember the Flower Children of the 50s and 60s, who chanted, Better Red than dead?
Guess they were cowards who believed that, but others of us who came of age during that era subscribed to the theory, Better dead than Red, and still do today. Incidentally, the Red in those chants referred to the color of the Communist flag, which is the reason I find todays Republican party slogan, Go Red to be particularly offensive. Wish theyd trash it in favor of something with less tainted associations.
Found it interesting that Admiral Jonathan Greenert, Chief Operating Officer of the United States Navy, was one of the officials with President Obama and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagle at the Korean War Memorial for services on Saturday.
Sort of brings Marinette into the national and world scene, since Greenert and some of his staff had been in Marinette days earlier, on Wednesday, July 24, to look over construction of the four Littoral Combat Ships being built for the Navy at Marinette Marine.
Wars can be fought on all kinds of fronts, and one of them involved the homeowner who battles weeds in flower beds and gardens, on the lawn and even in cracks on driveways and sidewalks.
Many of us spend untold hard-earned dollars buying toxic chemicals to get rid of weeds on driveways. Quack grass in particular digs its roots in under the concrete and stubbornly pops back up no matter how many times we pull it out.
Recently learned of a very, very inexpensive - and environmentally friendly - solution to use instead.
Simply mix one gallon of vinegar with two tablespoons of Dawn liquid dishwashing detergent and spray the cracks of your driveway or sidewalk. An old spray bottle from just about any household cleaner will do. Within 20 minutes the weeds and quack grass will be brown and dead.
Friend tried this on her driveway and found that it worked perfectly. Now needs to test it on individual dandelion plants and quack grass clumps on the lawn.
A word of caution: vinegar can be deadly to plants you dont want to kill too. Inadvertently killed a pot of basil with an unplanned vinegar treatment before I had a chance to plant it outside this spring. Didnt have the dishwashing detergent in it, but the vinegar alone was fatal.
A day or two earlier had poured white vinegar into a cup to dissolve calcium deposits and let it sit on the counter. Unfortunately, the fated pot of basil was sitting nearby. When it came time to clean up the counter, noticed the basil looked a mite peaked and probably needed a drink. Picked up the cup of what I thought was water and poured it in. Realized the error almost immediately, but it was too late. That plant sucked up the vinegar and died faster than I could think to pick the leaves off and save them. Didnt take 20 minutes - more like 20 seconds, probably because it was so thirsty.
Hadnt thought of this before, but now plan on my next day off to put some of the vinegar/Dawn solution in a more powerful sprayer and try it on some wicked poison ivy patches. Dont like using chemical weed killers, so it will certainly be wonderful if the vinegar works. Definitely dont dare to get close enough to the poison ivy to cut it or pull it.
Vinegar is good for many things, including dabbing on mosquito bites to stop the itch, and on bee bites to stop the sting. Also kills bacteria and molds when used to wipe down counter tops, cutting boards, etc., removes lime scale deposits from almost anything, and used as a rinse leaves both hair and fine crystal shining.
And - this is important - add vinegar to water you use to rinse fruits and vegetables prior to eating. Helps dissolve pesticides and other chemicals they may be carrying, and kills most germs and parasites.
To clean out all sorts of unmentionable gunk from your washing machine or dishwasher, pour in one gallon of white vinegar, and then let the machine run, on the hot setting, all through its regular large-load wash and rinse cycle.
But perhaps the greatest benefit of vinegar may be its value as a tonic. It is even said to reduce blood pressure, ease arthritis and clean cholesterol deposits out of veins and arteries, which in turn means better heart function.
Here were talking about real live apple cider vinegar, the kind with a mother in it, not the sterilized and stabilized varieties we buy at very low cost from the grocery store.
Raw apple cider vinegar, complete with the mother can be purchased at health food stores and most supermarkets, but it isnt all that cheap. Its also possible to make your own, but it takes a while, a lot like making wine.
You need about a dozen ripe apples, washed but not peeled, preferably apples that havent been sprayed, plus a package of regular bakers yeast and about a quart of pure spring water. Wash the apples and cut them up, peelings, cores and all, into a gallon-size glass jar or pitcher. Add the yeast, pour in enough pure spring water to generously cover the apples and stir. Cover the bowl with a piece of cheesecloth or a coffee filter and fasten with a rubber band. Let this sit in a warm place (preferably about 80 degrees) for three to four months, or until the natural sugars have been converted to alcohol. (Youll know by the taste.) Strain out the apples and pour the liquid into a fresh clean glass container. Set this back in a warm place, again covered just by cheese cloth or coffee filter, and leave it for another three or four months. Then pour into fresh glass bottles or jugs, cap with non-metallic lids, and store at room temperature.
On second thought, you may want to just buy your vinegar.
Rhubarb and strawberries are just about done. Blueberries and raspberries are ripe, and blackberries are close. The seasons pass so fast if you blink youll miss them, so stay on hour toes. Tomatoes are ripening on the vines, and all sorts of good things, including beet and radish thinnings and other fresh greens are ready for our enjoyment.
NO BAKE SUMMER LASAGNA
This lasagna is meatless, so you may want to serve it wit
a grilled meat or fish. It goes well with just about anything.
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons plus 3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper
8 lasagna noodles, broken in half crosswise
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 pints grape tomatoes, halved
2 zucchini (about 1 pound total), halved if large and thinly
8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon torn fresh basil leaves, plus more for serving
In a small bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, and 2 teaspoons oil; season with salt and pepper. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook noodles according to package instructions; drain. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high. Add garlic and tomatoes; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until slightly broken down, about 3 minutes. Put about a teaspoon of olive oil into a somewhat flat microwave safe baking dish with sides, and transfer tomatoes to it. On top of the tomatoes lay out the noodles, and then dab on small spoonsful of the ricotta mixture. Scatter on half of the mozzarella cheese. Add 1 tablespoon oil and zucchini to the skillet in which you cooked the tomatoes; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until zucchini are tender, about 5 minutes, then stir in the basil. Put this on top of the other ingredients and sprinkle on remaining mozzarella cheese. Put into microwave for about two minutes, or until mozzarella starts to melt. Let sit a few more minutes before serving. If you want the cheese brown on top and dont mind heating up the kitchen, pop under the broiler for a minute or two. Garnish with fresh basil leaves to serve.
Too hot to cook, but youre craving a sweet treat? Your dusty old waffle iron could save the day. You can make all sorts of batters in it besides ordinary waffles. Try this one for an easy single-serving dessert, or make multiples. Of course, youll want it topped with ice cream or whipped cream.
1 package fudge brownie mix
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat waffle iron to medium hot and coat it well with buttery flavored cooking spray, top and bottom. Starting with the packaged brownie mix, combine all the ingredients and stir with a fork until smooth. Spoon about a rounded tablespoon or so of the mixture onto each side of the waffle iron, close the lid and cook until steam quits coming out. The chocolate waffle should be brown and crispy. Serve it piping hot with ice cream. Also good if you slice on some ripe banana before adding the ice dream. Make as many as you need, even if its only one, and then refrigerate the rest of the batter until next time, even up to a week.
MASCARPONE GINGERBREAD DIP
This tangy sweet dip is good with apple slices, crisp gingerbread cookies or shortbread. Doesnt need cooking. Great side with ham or pork and vegetables on the grill.
1 cup Mascarpone cheese
1 tablespoon molasses
2 tablespoons crystalized or candied ginger, coarsely
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon brown sugar, lightly packed
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
Apple slices, ginger cookies or shortbreads for dipping. Stir mascarpone and molasses together in bowl. In food processor mix the gingers, brown sugar, cinnamon and cloves and pulse until the crystalized ginger is finely minced. Add this mixture to the mascarpone and stir gently until blended. Eat and enjoy.
Thought for the Week: Bullies can be male or female, and they come in all ages, but they are neither ladies nor gentlemen. As Margaret Thatcher pointed out: Being powerful is like being a lady. if you have to tell people you are, then you are not. Being wise sort of falls into the same category. Lord Chesterfield advised, Be wiser than other people if you can, but do not tell them so.
(This column is written by Shirley Prudhomme of Crivitz. Views expressed are her own and are in no way intended to be an official statement of the opinions of Peshtigo Times editors and publishers. She may be contacted by phone at 715-927-5034 or by e-mail at shirleyprudhommechickadee@yahoo. com.)
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