Greetings from South Dakota.
By the time you read this, we will have returned from a long-looked-forward-to long weekend getaway. I wouldn’t call it restful — since I never sleep well away from home — but it sure was fun.
We think it’s dry here, but everything is toasted out west. And just think, last year at this time, there was flooding in Hixton — what a difference a year makes.
We have gone on a lot of vacations over the years, but South Dakota was our very first out-of-state adventure and our favorite place to visit over and over again. We have traditions to follow, like counting Wall Drug signs and places we always have to visit or at least drive by. That includes Wall Drug, the Mitchell Corn Palace to see what the look is for this year, the Crazy Horse Monument to see progress made and not one — but two — Cabela’s stores.
This year was specifically planned for lots of photo taking by the camera buffs in the family. We drove through the Badlands, Spearfish Canyon and Needles Highway, and the guys spent a lot of time at Mount Rushmore.
Between the two of them, they brought back some awesome pictures. The only thing that would have made the whole thing better is if our oldest could have joined us. Now the hard part is getting back to “normal living mode” and realizing just how fast the summer is moving along.
We got back just in time for all the excitement about the upcoming Jackson County Fair. From the announcement that the Fair Book dedication this year is to a well-deserving Butch and Sonja Kinning to the seven young ladies who vied for the title of Miss Jackson County to the pages of events that will be happening throughout fair time, there definitely is something for everyone. I would love to hear of everyone’s ribbon successes. There are lots of talented people out there.
Speaking of the Miss Jackson County ceremonies, we had a young lady from Hixton vying for the title — Courtney Hentsch. She’s the daughter of Scott Hentsch and Toni Nortman.
The Olympics aren’t the only place to get gold, silver and bronze. Congrats to Lincoln student Kandi Shramek, who brought home silver for her project in the chapter service project manual’s junior category, when she attended the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America national competition in Orlando, Fla. It was a family affair. Brandi attended as FCCLA treasurer, and parents Pat and Cindy went as chaperones. It sounds like it was a real learning experience, and they had a lot of fun.
A very happy birthday to Tyler Bush on July 25.
Happy anniversary wishes go out to Daniel and Marian Simonson, Barb and Ron Ramquist, Christopher and Anna Ripp, Teresa and Brian Langan, Andrea and Scott Hudson, Pat and Cindy Shramek, Lisa and Cory Eddy, Dallas and Jennifer Gearing, Kelli and Johnathan Camien, Stephanie and George LaBar and Jeff and Traci Lien.
Happy birthday wishes go out to Nick Heusi, Gary Cooper, Grace Nordahl, Diane Fredrickson, Shawn Helgeson Kniseley, Emmalea Laufenberg, Camie and Callie Hentsch, Andrea Hudson, Darin Hudson, Kristi Hudson, Russell Mach, Jan Hudson, Rhonda Shoemaker, Beckett Hodge, Shannon Bunnell, Cindy Shramek and Molly Johnson.
If I missed anyone, you know what to do. Call me at (715) 963-2531 or send news to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Former Hixton resident and Hixton High School graduate Donald Osegard passed away in Menomonie on July 15 at the age of 81. Burial was in Upper Beaver Creek Cemetery. Sympathies are extended to family and friends from the area.
I’ve Learned ... that it doesn’t matter how near or far you go — it’s always fun to look forward to and enjoy the trip, but it’s nice to come back home.
Word of the Week: nous — (noos or nous) the mind or intellect or self-contemplation of the order of the universe.
Natural High: Pulling into the driveway after driving through miles of the worst fog I had ever seen and been in.
Thrifty Tip of the Week: Here’s one of our trip-taking tips. Bring along breakfast items like muffins, cereal, bagels and the like. If your motel doesn’t feature breakfast, eat meals out at lunch- time menu prices, and then have a light supper of sandwiches, fruit and fresh veggies when you are kicking back and relaxing after a long day of relaxing.
I’m trying out some new recipes and looking forward to some upcoming special visitors.
Country Kitchen Casserole
3/4 pound bulk pork sausage
1 cup milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 1/2 cups packaged croutons (garlic-or onion-flavored)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat a two-quart casserole dish with cooking spray. In a large skillet, brown sausage over medium heat. Drain off fat. Put sausage in prepared casserole dish. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and stir in milk, salt and cheese. Pour egg mixture over sausage. Sprinkle with croutons. Bake uncovered for 45 to 50 minutes. Let stand five minutes before serving.
Creamy Green Bean Casserole
1 10.75-ounce can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 9-ounce packages frozen French-cut green beans, thawed and drained
1 cup crushed butter-flavored crackers
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, combine soup, cream cheese and salt and mix well. Stir in beans and spoon into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish that has been coated with cooking spray. In a bowl, combine crushed crackers and butter and mix well. Sprinkle cracker mixture evenly over beans and bake 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through and topping is golden.
Quote of the Week: “A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer — it sings because it has a song.” — Maya Angelo