Category Archives: George’s Writers Corner

Great Spot to hear about anything and everything concerning writing. Also information on my books, book signings, speaking engagements and events that might be happening in and around our town.

Living Off the Beaten Path, On April 6/2024

Good Morning! As the sun rises over the fields, lakes and streams, it’s time to take in what the day has to offer, as a new day is filled with possibilities. Myself, I always take a moment to breathe in the fresh air and appreciate the land that keeps me alive.

Starting things off, the temperature has warmed up a lot and the snow we had over the past few days has melted. Truth told, the grass is starting to green up, and it won’t be long before I have to bring out that old mower of mine. At least I think I will, as it is getting up there in years, and I am thinking I will have to buy another one soon. I just have to find the right deal, as riding mowers are expensive these days. Along with that, well-made ones are hard to find. If any of you hears of a good deal one, let me know. I just might be interested.

On another note, this is the time of year to get them seeds out, let them soak overnight in a glass of warm rain water, and then get to planting them so they will be ready to plant when your vegetable garden is ready. I will be doing that starting today. It’s easy for me to remember, as my birthday falls on April 2. And my name is George, which in itself means… Tiller of Soil. I kind of think, I was meant right from the very beginning to be a farmer, and a writer too. I believe the writer in me was meant to share knowledge and help those who may not be well-versed in certain areas.

Yesterday I worked away here on my new novel, the first in a series I want to write. It’s something I always wanted to do. I know some ask why, as you already have published seven books. Well simply put, the other books are about true life happenings, These new stories I’m writing explore our world, what it is now, and what it could be in the future. There’s a bit of love, science fiction, mystery, and humor mixed in. And there’s a big secret too, something about the start of life on Earth that might surprise a lot of people. I am hoping my writing and knowledge will take my readers on a journey that’s out of the ordinary, filled with unexpected twists and turns that will keep everyone with an open mind, eagerly turning the pages and wanting more!

Today though being that the weather is nice I plan on re-piling my firewood that fell over, and if warm enough I might do some front porch sittin’ with my little woman. She will be busy doing the wash, which keeps her busy along with the other things she usually does on a Saturday. We are both busy people, especially in the spring.

With that I am off for my breakfast that my lovely wife is making for me and will then set my sights on what lies ahead.

You all have a great day. GW

Fishing Times For Saturday

Major Times
10:36 AM-12:36 PM

Minor Times
5:31 AM-6:31 AM
4:54 PM-5:54 PM

Day Rating I give it a 2-star rating out of 5 for catching a few. Good Luck!

Fishing Tip of the Day! Keep your secrets, like your tackle box: close and guarded. You wouldn’t want everyone and their grandma knowing where the big ones are hiding, now, would we?

Groundhog Day, Feb 2

They said in the news yesterday that, Ontario’s Wiarton Willie, didn’t see his shadows on Friday morning. Which in turn means that spring isn’t that far off. I am all for that.

You know, back when I was young, Groundhog Day was like a holiday. We’d all gather around, shiverin’ in the cold, waitin’ to see what that groundhog had to say. It was as if nature was telling us what the weather had in store.

But these days for most it’s all about fancy gadgets and high-tech gizmos. Instead of trusting the wisdom of the groundhog, we’re glued to our screens, checkin’ weather forecasts like there’s no tomorrow. It seems we’ve lost touch with the simplicity of it all.

We also didn’t need much to be happy back when—just good company and the promise of spring in the air. It’s a shame we’ve let it slip through our fingers in this fast-paced world.

I think we should all take a step back, remember the good ol’ days, and maybe, just maybe, we’ll find a bit of that old-fashioned joy once again. GW

Trying To Change The Past?

As an old-timer and a writer, I find comfort in the timeless truths of our past. Yet, today, I see a troubling trend—as some desire to rewrite yesterday’s tales, as if it could reshape today.

Let me be clear: the past ain’t a toy for our whims. It’s a testament to those who walked before us, a well of wisdom for our journey forward. To tinker with it, whether by altering stories or judging folks by today’s standards, is to deny the lessons we’ve learned.

Think of books, each a portal to human experience. Some want to censor them, but who are we to decide what’s worth knowing? And what of those in our history books? Flawed, yes, but aren’t we all? We can’t cast them aside for that.

So let’s not be fooled by revisionism. Let’s embrace our past, warts and all.

In the end, the past is not to be feared, but honoured. I feel we should stand firm against any who would seek to erase it, be it through altering books, removing statues, or otherwise. Our history shapes us, and we must preserve it, learn from it, and let it guide us forward. GW

What’s Happening In Cottage Country On August 24/2023

Good Morning!

It’s a cloudy morning, waking up here in Cottage Country. We didn’t have any rain through the night, but it does look like we might have a shower or two later on. We won’t be seeing much sunshine today.

Highway 522: It has once again slowed down with a lot of folks heading off home, leaving the cottage country behind, as in a week the kids are back to school and the cooler weather will slowly edge back into our area.

On another note, my lovely wife figured I would be tired, so she mowed the grass around our home while Barry and I were out fishing yesterday, along with looking after customers that dropped by our gift shop. She had a busy day too. So … today we don’t have to do that. Which is fine with me as I am still tired from yesterday, and it does look like rain. That woman of mine is sure a worker.

With that, I am off for a poached egg mixed with some red peppers and tomatoes fresh out of our garden, topped off with a bit of 5-year-old cheddar cheese. Can’t beat that for a breakfast to get a feller moving.

Have a great day! GW

Climate Change

A Farmer’s Perspective on Global Warming: Nature’s Dance through Time

Hi Folks

As an old farmer who has witnessed the cycles of seasons and the rhythms of the land, I’ve come to believe that much of the global warming we see today is not solely due to human activities, but rather a part of the natural ebb and flow that our planet has experienced for millions of years. Allow me to share my perspective, rooted in years of tilling the soil and observing the world around me.

1. Nature’s Ever-Changing Patterns

Throughout history, our Earth has undergone countless changes. Ice ages have come and gone, oceans have risen and receded, and climates have shifted. These shifts were not due to human actions, but rather the result of complex interactions within the Earth’s systems. The planet’s tectonic movements, solar fluctuations, and volcanic activity are just a few factors that have contributed to these changes over vast time spans.

2. A Closer Look at the Past

When we delve into history, we uncover evidence of temperature fluctuations predating the industrial era. Ice cores, tree rings, and sediment layers reveal patterns of warming and cooling that occurred long before factories and cars became commonplace. This tells us that the planet has experienced significant temperature variations without direct human involvement.

3. The Human Impact

Undoubtedly, human activities have contributed to changes in our environment. Deforestation, industrial emissions, and energy consumption have released greenhouse gases that trap heat in the atmosphere, leading to a warmer climate. However, it’s important to remember that our planet has endured natural climate shifts even before humans emerged. Volcanic eruptions, for instance, can spew enormous amounts of gases and particles into the air, affecting the climate more dramatically than human actions ever could.

4. Embracing Adaptive Practices

As farmers, we understand the value of adapting to the changing seasons. Our ancestors adjusted their practices in response to varying climates, and we continue to do the same today. While human actions do play a role in the current changes, we must also acknowledge that nature has its course. Instead of merely pointing fingers, we can strive to find harmony between our activities and the Earth’s inherent cycles.

5. Balance and Stewardship

By recognizing the intricate balance of natural processes, we can become better stewards of the land. Just as we adapt our farming methods to suit changing conditions, we should collectively strive to adopt sustainable practices that minimize our impact on the environment. This includes reducing emissions, conserving resources, and protecting ecosystems.

In conclusion, while human activities certainly contribute to global warming, it’s essential to view the broader context of Earth’s history. Our planet has undergone remarkable changes long before our time, shaped by factors far beyond our control. As stewards of the land, let us work towards a balance between our actions and the timeless rhythms of nature, preserving this beautiful world for generations to come.

What’s Happening These Days

Escaping the Social Media Quicksand with a Dash of Humor

In a world where social media platforms have become our digital playgrounds, the real question that arises is, “What comes next?” Are we slowly morphing into a society that relies more on scrolling than strolling, and double-tapping rather than double-checking? It’s time to take a humorous yet truthful look at the social media frenzy that’s swept us off our feet, and how we can regain control of our lives.

#HashtagHijinks: The Social Media Stratosphere

Oh, the magical land of hashtags and filters, where a humble selfie can transform into a glamorous portrait with a swipe and a click. We’ve all seen it—friends contorting their faces into ungodly shapes, all in the name of finding that perfect selfie angle. But let’s face it, folks, we’re not all aspiring models, and the world can only handle so many pouty lips and smoldering gazes.

Reality Check: FOMO vs. JOMO

Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) has become our digital arch-nemesis. We’re constantly bombarded with images of friends’ fabulous vacations, gourmet meals, and picture-perfect lives. But wait, isn’t that just one corner of their lives, meticulously curated for likes and comments? It’s time to embrace the Joy of Missing Out (JOMO). Put down the phone, step out into the real world, and discover that life isn’t just about the highlights reel—it’s about embracing the messy, unfiltered moments.

Self(ie)-Discovery: A Journey Back to Reality

In a world where a carefully constructed online persona reigns supreme, it’s easy to forget who we really are. Have you ever seen a photo of yourself and thought, “Do I really look like that?” Maybe it’s time to leave behind the Snapchat filters and come face-to-face with the real, unfiltered you. Remember, the quirks and imperfections are what make you uniquely beautiful.

Escaping the Digital Quicksand: Take Back Your Life

So, what comes next after social media saturation? It’s high time we rekindle our relationship with reality. Start by setting time limits for your scrolling sessions—because let’s be honest, you don’t need to know what your aunt’s neighbor’s dog had for breakfast. Engage in activities that don’t involve screens—read a book, go for a walk, try cooking a new recipe (and hey, sharing it online is optional!).

The Punchline: Life is Calling, and It’s Not a DM

In the grand sitcom of life, social media might be a recurring punchline, but it’s not the main act. The real question isn’t just “What comes next?” but also “What’s happening now?” Let’s pause the meme marathon, step away from the cat videos, and reclaim our time for genuine experiences, real laughter, and in-person connections.

So, the next time you’re about to post a photo of your avocado toast, remember this: life’s most precious moments aren’t filtered or cropped. They’re raw, unedited, and waiting for you beyond the screen. It’s time to log off and live on—because the only thing better than a viral tweet is a life well-lived.

In a world of likes, let’s love our lives offline. It’s time to press “unfollow” on the digital realm and hit “like” on the world outside our screens.

What’s Happening

The Love-Hate Relationship Between Media and Government – It’s Complicated!”

Subtitle: “A Comedic Exploration of How Journalists and Politicians Tango Through Tumultuous Times”

Introduction: Ah, the news media and the government – like peanut butter and jelly, Batman and Robin, or Monday mornings and a good cup of coffee. Their relationship is a dance as intricate as a salsa routine, as dramatic as a soap opera, and as confusing as trying to assemble IKEA furniture without the instructions. In this whimsical exposé, we unravel the tangled web of their “mutually beneficial” partnership, proving that sometimes, the truth is stranger than fiction.

Act 1: The Dramatic Tango of Crisis Creation: Imagine a world without crises – no sensational headlines, no anxious viewers glued to their screens, and worst of all, no politicians with an audience to impress. The horror! Enter the news media, with their trusty magnifying glass, seeking out specks of drama even in the dullest of situations. Need to spice up a story about a lost cat? Suddenly, it’s “Breaking News: Feline Phenomenon Grips the Nation!” The government officials, meanwhile, gleefully watch the media circus unfold, rubbing their hands together in anticipation of their time in the spotlight.

Act 2: The Grand Illusion of Response: Government officials have a responsibility – nay, a duty – to appear as though they’re responding decisively to crises. Think of them as magicians, pulling rabbits out of hats (or policies out of thin air). The media plays along, eager to capture the heroic moment when our leaders swoop in to save the day. Whether it’s declaring war on the menace of rogue squirrels or promising to eradicate the ominous bubble gum shortage, politicians are quick to seize the opportunity for a photo op, complete with a stern gaze into the camera that screams, “I’m here to fix things!”

Act 3: The Mythmaking Mambo: As the tango intensifies, so does the mythmaking. Journalists and politicians spin tales more convoluted than a season finale of a binge-worthy TV show. Suddenly, a garden variety traffic jam becomes a national crisis of epic proportions – “Traffic Armageddon: The Day the Commuters Stood Still.” And don’t even get us started on the labyrinthine narratives politicians construct to explain why they were seen exiting a donut shop at 3 AM while advocating for healthier eating.

Act 4: The Cosmic Collision of Self-Interest: In this cosmic dance, self-interest reigns supreme. Journalists need sensational stories to boost their ratings, secure their jobs, and maybe even get that coveted Pulitzer. Meanwhile, politicians yearn for reelection, striving to convince the masses that they alone possess the secret formula to solve all of society’s ills. It’s a collision of ego, ambition, and the perpetual craving for validation, all wrapped up in a glitzy package of sensational headlines.

Conclusion: So, there you have it – a backstage pass to the greatest show on Earth, where the news media and the government twirl and twist, each fueling the other’s insatiable appetite for attention. Whether it’s a joint fabrication or a genuine crisis, one thing’s for sure: this dance isn’t ending anytime soon. So, dear reader, the next time you catch a glimpse of a politician dramatically patting a firefighter’s back while the camera zooms in, or witness a journalist turning a minor hiccup into an apocalyptic ordeal, remember the intricate tango they’re performing for your entertainment. And who knows, maybe someday we’ll see them on “Dancing with the Stars: Media vs. Government Edition” – because when it comes to outlandish spectacles, they’ve certainly earned their spot in the limelight!

Made In Canada

Title: Oh Canada! Let’s Rally for Rights and Rediscover ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’

Canada, the land of maple syrup, ice hockey, and endless politeness. But hey, Canucks, it’s time to put down those cups of Tim Hortons and take a moment to reflect on the state of affairs. We’ve got a situation on our hands that’s more urgent than debating the best poutine toppings – it’s about our rights and the glorious ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’ concept that seems to have been snoozing lately.

1. Rise Up, Eh!

Alright, fellow Canucks, picture this: a sea of Canadians standing shoulder to shoulder, united by the belief that our rights are worth fighting for. If we can line up for Black Friday deals, we can definitely line up to protect our rights, can’t we? It’s like defending the honor of hockey, but with less body checking and more legal prowess.

2. We’re Talking Aboot Rights, Eh?

You know those rights you have, like freedom of speech, the right to a fair trial, and the power to binge-watch all the Canadian TV shows you want? Yeah, those ones. They’re like the secret recipe to our national poutine – essential, irreplaceable, and worth guarding.

3. Sorry, Not Sorry

Imagine a Canada where we don’t just apologize for everything, but also take action to preserve our rights and values. It’s time to swap those polite nods for assertive headshakes when we see our rights being nibbled away. Let’s show the world that we’re not just nice, we’re also fiercely protective of our identity.

4. The Ghost of ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’

Remember the days when ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’ wasn’t just a catchy phrase but a badge of honor? We used to wear it with pride, like a beaver on a hockey jersey. But somewhere along the way, we started chasing shiny foreign goods and imported delicacies. It’s time to resurrect that spirit and support our local artisans, farmers, and manufacturers.

5. From Poutine to Patriotism

Eating a poutine made with Canadian cheese curds and gravy that oozes national pride – that’s the feeling we’re aiming for. Let’s channel the same enthusiasm into our rights and the products made on our home turf. It’s not just about consuming, it’s about championing Canadian excellence.

6. The Battle of Wit and Wisdom

Humor and wit have always been our strong suits, whether it’s cracking jokes about our weather or poking fun at our overuse of the word ‘eh.’ Let’s harness that humor to shed light on the serious issues we face. The world needs to see that we’re not just about politeness, we’re about standing up and being heard.

7. A Tearful Ode to the Good Ol’ Days

Remember those heartfelt ‘o Canada’ moments at hockey games? Let’s have a similar moment of reflection. Shed a tear for the times when ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’ wasn’t just a slogan but a way of life. Let that tear fuel our determination to reclaim our rights and our pride in Canadian products.

So, fellow Canadians, it’s time to put on our toques, roll up our sleeves, and remind the world why we’re known for more than just our syrupy sweetness. Let’s stand up for our rights, embrace the ‘Made in Canada, Grown in Canada’ philosophy, and show the world that when push comes to shove, we’re not just apologetic – we’re unapologetically Canadian!

Powers That Be Knows Best???

Title: “Why Fix What Ain’t Broke? Government Knows Best…or Do They?”

Howdy there, folks! Pull up a hay bale and lend an ear ’cause we’re gonna talk about a topic as old as the hills – government stickin’ their noses where they don’t belong! Now, I ain’t no fancy-pants politician, but I reckon it’s high time we had a chat ’bout why the government ain’t exactly cut out to be our life coaches.

You see, us folks out in the fields know a thing or two ’bout keepin’ things simple. We tend to our crops, raise our critters, and keep our fences mended. We don’t need some suit-wearin’ bigwig tellin’ us how to run our own show. It’s like the government’s playin’ farmer, tryin’ to milk a bull – it just ain’t gonna work!

Now, I ain’t sayin’ government folks don’t mean well. Bless their hearts, they might think they’ve got all the answers, but let me tell ya – when they start meddlin’ in our affairs, it’s like watchin’ a chicken try to play the fiddle. It might look amusing, but it ain’t gonna make sweet music.

I reckon it’s like when Cousin Jeb tried to teach his ol’ dog to fetch the newspaper. Doggone it, that pup chewed up half the yard before Jeb realized he’d been barkin’ up the wrong tree. It’s the same with the government – they start messin’ with things they don’t rightly understand, and next thing ya know, we’re all knee-deep in regulations and rules.

Now, humor me a bit here. Imagine if the government decided to run a rodeo. First off, they’d have us ridin’ cows instead of bulls ’cause, ya know, they’re less aggressive or somethin’. Then they’d have a “bureaucracy barrel racing” event where you gotta fill out forms at every turn. And don’t forget the “tax deduction roping” – lassoin’ those dollars faster than a steer on a caffeine binge!

But here’s the kicker – just ’cause they’re runnin’ the show, don’t mean they know how to ride. It’s like puttin’ a city slicker on a wild stallion and expectin’ ’em to win the Kentucky Derby. No amount of speeches and fancy suits can replace good ol’ hands-on experience.

So, my point is this: government’s like a rusty tractor tryin’ to plow a field already tilled and thriving. We don’t need ’em to tell us how to live our lives or what’s good for us. We ain’t sheep needin’ a shepherd; we’re independent thinkers who know the lay of our own land.

Now, don’t get me wrong – we ain’t pitchfork-wielding rebels here. We believe in laws and order, but let’s keep things sensible. Let the government handle what they’re good at – fixin’ roads, keepin’ the peace, and lettin’ us be the proud stewards of our own destiny.

So, next time you see a politician tryin’ to tell you what’s best, just smile, tip your hat, and kindly remind ’em that while they might know how to filibuster, we know how to farmbuster. After all, you can’t grow corn by reciting the Constitution – you gotta get your hands dirty and work the land.

Stay wise and stay true, my friends! Until next time, keep plowin’ your own furrows and leavin’ the bureaucrats to their paperwork rodeos.

Margaret & Henry, Two Nice Old Folks

In the quaint little farmhouse nestled on the rolling hills, an old farmer named Henry sat on the front porch, his weathered hands resting on the creaky wooden armrest. Beside him, his wife Margaret, her once chestnut hair now silver, gazed out at the sprawling fields that stretched as far as the eye could see. They had been married for over fifty years, a lifetime of shared memories and hard work.

“Margaret,” Henry began with a twinkle in his eye, “remember when we first started farming these lands? No fancy machines, just our hands and a stubborn mule named Bessie.”

Margaret chuckled softly, her eyes creasing at the corners. “Oh, I do, Henry. And those were the days, weren’t they? We worked from dawn till dusk, but there was a kind of freedom in it, a connection to the land.”

“Aye,” Henry nodded, a hint of nostalgia in his voice. “Nowadays, you can’t plow a field without filling out a dozen forms and waiting for some government inspector to give you the green light.”

Margaret sighed, her gaze turning wistful. “I miss the simplicity, the smell of the earth in the morning. Now it’s all about pesticides, regulations, and market prices.”

Henry’s brows furrowed. “And don’t even get me started on those crop quotas. We used to plant what we wanted, when we wanted. Now it’s like they’re telling us how many potatoes we’re allowed to grow!”

They shared a knowing look, a mixture of sadness and amusement passing between them.

“But you know, Margaret,” Henry continued, a mischievous glint in his eye, “I heard they’re thinking of regulating the number of chickens a farmer can have next. Can you imagine? ‘Sorry, Mr. Farmer, you’ve exceeded your cluck limit for the year!'”

Margaret burst into laughter, her melodious chuckles filling the air. “Oh, Henry, you always know how to make me smile. Even in the face of all these changes.”

Henry leaned back in his chair, a contented sigh escaping his lips. “Well, my dear, we may not have as much freedom as we used to, but we’ve still got each other and a lifetime of stories to share.”

As the sun began to set, casting a warm golden glow over the fields, Henry and Margaret sat side by side, their fingers entwined. The world around them may have changed, but their love and shared memories remained steadfast.

“Remember that time the cows got loose and ended up in the mayor’s garden?” Margaret reminisced, a playful glint in her eye.

“Oh, how could I forget?” Henry chuckled. “That was a sight to behold! The mayor chasing after those cows with his hat in hand.”

They laughed heartily, the sound carrying across the fields, a testament to the enduring bond they shared. And as the stars began to twinkle in the evening sky, Henry and Margaret continued to swap stories, finding solace and joy in each other’s company, even amidst the ever-changing landscape of farming.

For, as they both knew, the rules and regulations may come and go, but the love they had cultivated over fifty years was a harvest that would never wither.

What’s Happening In Cottage Country on August 7/2023

Good Morning!

It’s a cloudy, rainy day here in Cottage Country. The rain started early this morning and by the looks of things it will remain with us till … tomorrow. But I am not complaining, as we sure need it with things being so dry. We can talk about global warming, but I think nature has its own way. No matter what we do, nature will follow its own path. This can be good, because some people who claim to know what’s best for the Earth might actually be causing more harm. I don’t mean they’re making the weather worse, but their efforts to help the planet might be hurting the people who live on it.

Highway 522 has picked up a wee bit as yesterday our gift shop was really busy with a steady stream of folks dropping by checking things out. We had a real good day to say the least.

But Report: Everything is good in that department, working outside for the past few days I haven’t seen hardly a one.

On another note. Yesterday I worked all day in the old woodworking shop on a new fly through bird feeding station. It turned out nice. I took a couple pictures which I will share with you at the bottom of this post. I have made a lot of them over the years, all sizes shapes and forms, but the one I just made I found to be the best of the lot. And I have to tell ya, it will entertain a lot of birds. Actually, I had a couple that dropped by yesterday while I was doing the final touches and asked if I would make them one. Of course, I said yes and will get to that in a day or so. The only thing is with the price of lumber these days it costs a bit for material to make them. At the moment, figuring everything in, it comes to $225.00 each which for its size isn’t all that bad and yes I can make them smaller if need be for a bit less.

Today, being that it is raining, I kind of figure it will be a good day to clean up the mess I made yesterday in my shop and after that I will bug my lovely wife while she is making our preserves for winter, along with getting together some stories for a new book, which when finished will mean I have 8 published books for sale. A lot of people have been asking when I am going to write another. But back on the subject of doing up preservers for winter/freezing.

You know, I have found, over the years, that eating fruits and vegetables that you grow at home or bought from a real farmer, not a fellow that sells fruits and vegetables that they don’t grow themselves, is really important for your health. They are packed with vitamins and nutrients that help your body stay strong and keep you feeling good.

Why? Well, when you grow your own fruits and veggies, you know exactly what goes into them. No mysterious chemicals or strange stuff – just pure, fresh goodness. Plus, they taste so much better than store-bought ones. Especially that imported stuff that they are forcing upon us these days. Not a good thing, my friends.

With that, I am off for a boiled egg and a piece of toast with brown molasses sugar. Can’t beat a breakfast like that to get the old body wanting to get out there and do some work. Okay, the brown sugar is questionable, but hey … the molasses is sure good for ya!

Wishing you all the best! GW

Real Butter

In the past, I used to relish eating homemade butter that Laura, the lady that raised me, would prepare for our meals.

However, to truly understand how good it tasted, you’d have to taste it for yourself. Simply put, it was incredibly satisfying and addictive.

Although creating it required some effort, the end result was definitely worth it, especially since purchasing store-bought butter was beyond our financial means.

We would begin by milking the cows, and once that was complete, we would take the milk and place it in the separator, a device that separated the milk’s cream from the rest of the liquid. Not a motorized one either, because at the time, hand power was all we had.

After gathering the cream, we would take it indoors and place it inside an old wooden churn. A churn is a device that farmers used back in the day to turn cream into butter.

The churn itself is usually made of wood, and it has a tall, cylindrical shape with a handle on top. Inside the churn, there’s a paddle or dasher that’s attached to the handle. When you turn the handle, the paddle moves up and down, agitating the cream and causing it to thicken, forming solid butter. The liquid that’s left over is called buttermilk. Which is very tasty in itself, especially when chilled and drunk on a hot day.

Once the butter is formed, it’s removed from the churn and then washed and worked to remove any remaining liquid. After that, it’s ready to be salted or flavoured to taste.

I remember one time when Laura and I were making butter together, and something caught my attention. The butter we churned during the winter didn’t have the typical yellow color that I was used to, so I asked her about it. She explained to me that it was because the house was cold, and the butter tends to lose its color in such conditions.

To fix the issue with the butter’s color, she revealed that she had a trick up her sleeve: and halfway through churning, she took a hot poker from the stove and dipped it into the butter. This surprised me as I saw that simply heating up the cream caused the butter to regain some of its color. 

She then mentioned that she could add some carrot juice to the butter if the colour still wasn’t quite right, but emphasized the importance of adding the right amount. Nonetheless, she reassured me … that even if the butter didn’t look perfect, it would still taste fantastic.

You know, as I look back on those days, I realize that the wisdom and guidance of those fine old folks were the foundation of the happiness and contentment I enjoyed. 

Their teachings still are firmly placed in my mind and guide me through life’s ups and downs. I am forever grateful for their presence in my life, and I am happy to  pass on their wisdom to others, just as they did for me.

Harold And Frank

Listening to old timers talking many years ago.

Sitting on the porch of the quaint old farmhouse, Harold and Frank sipped their cold beers, the checkers board set up between them. The sun was starting to set, casting a warm glow over the fields they had toiled in for fifty long years.

Harold, with a twinkle in his eye, looked at Frank and said, “You know, Frank, back in our younger days, we were as spry as those rabbits over yonder. We could work from dawn ’til dusk without breaking a sweat!”

Frank chuckled and replied, “Ah, those were the days, Harold! I remember when we could carry those bales of hay like they were feathers. Now, a sack of potatoes feels like a ton!”

They both took a moment to laugh heartily, reminiscing about their youthful vigor. Then Harold’s face turned serious as he looked out over the horizon. “But you know, Frank, it’s not just our backs that have changed. It’s this whole world around us.”

Frank nodded in agreement, his weathered hands slowly moving a checker piece across the board. “You’re right, Harold. Technology has come a long way. Remember how we used to plow the fields with those stubborn mules? Now, they have machines that do it faster than we ever could!”

Harold smirked, “Aye, and let’s not forget about those confounded cell phones! Back in our day, if you wanted to talk to someone, you hollered from the porch, and they could hear you all the way across the farm!”

They both chuckled at the thought of their old communication methods. “And remember when the cows would escape, and we’d have to chase ’em all over the place?” Frank added. “Nowadays, they got electric fences that keep ’em in line.”

Harold leaned back in his chair, taking a sip of his beer. “You know, Frank, with all these gadgets and gizmos, sometimes I feel like we’re becoming obsolete!”

Frank raised an eyebrow, “Oh, don’t you go thinking that way, Harold. There’s wisdom in our years that no machine can replace. We know how to read the signs of the weather by the way the wind blows, and we can mend a fence that’s been in the family for generations.”

“You’re right, my friend,” Harold nodded. “There’s a lifetime of experience in these hands. It’s not just about knowing how to work the land, but understanding its rhythms and respecting its ways.”

They fell into a moment of thoughtful silence before Frank let out a hearty laugh, slapping the checkers board. “Enough of these serious talks! It’s time for you to make your move, old man!”

Harold grinned mischievously, “Oh, you’re in for it now, Frank. You know, all those years of farming have given me a strategic mind!”

And so, the two old timers continued their checkers game, sharing stories of their farming adventures and swapping jokes as the sun dipped below the horizon. In their laughter and camaraderie, they found solace in knowing that despite all the changes, some things remained constant – the bond of friendship, the joy of shared memories, and the wisdom of a life well-lived.

Soda Anyone

Over the years I have indulged in different drinks. And truth be told, I have enjoyed most of them.

In my younger days, there wasn’t anything that quenched my thirst better than a soda.

However, thing’s has changed a lot over the years, especially when it comes to the container that holds the Liquid Candy. 

That’s what some called it back when.

Most containers back when were made from glass, and thinking about that they had some pretty fancy ones too. 

From tall to short, fancy lettering, to just plain, they had them all.

I can remember going into what they used to call a Soda Fountain. There you could get a sandwich, hot dog, ice-cream, and sodas of all kinds.

My favorite was a Cherry Coke Float mixed with ice-cream, and blended to a set texture that would be hard to copy today.

I have to tell you they were definitely tasty.

I also enjoyed the environment that I got when walking into the place. Right away you would see a bar, something like in the old Hotels they had at the time.

Actually, they made me feel like a grown up. As I could walk in and sit myself down at the bar on a stool, swirling myself around in a circle, while chatting away to the Soda Jerk. 

Most had a nice personality, and it seemed it didn’t matter what you wanted to talk about, that Soda Jerk had an answer for everything. 

I honestly don’t know how he did it.

His job consisted of working at the soda fountain, swinging the soda fountain handle back and forth when adding soda water to a fountain beverage. 

They prepared some of the best milkshakes I have ever tasted, along with other treats, using mixers, that featured spindles and agitators, that forced air into the drinks.

When them machines finished doing what they were made to do, the drinks came out smooth and fluffy. 

The next thing I enjoyed was watching how they took the steel container, pouring the milkshake, or whatever into tall glasses.

It sure was a sight to see, let me tell ya. My mouth still waters thinking about it.

You know! I could sit and watch the feller make them drinks for hours.

And the best part was, that most of the time, they didn’t mind how long I sat there, either.

Yes … things have changed over the years, I grant you that. But to this date I have never found a place that could make a Cherry Coke Float like they used to many years ago.

Anyway now that I have all your taste buds flowing, there is one last thing that I would like to talk about today.

It’s about a feller I got to know while visiting our Cottage in Sarasota, Florida many years ago.

This fellow owned a gas station, and at the back of his store, he had over the years saved, literally, hundreds of different kinds of Coca-Cola Bottles.

When he first showed me, I would have never believed that there were so many kinds.

Quite a sight to see.

Anyway, I thought I would share that with you, if for nothing else than it might make you think twice before throwing certain things away.

He told me, today his collection is worth thousands of dollars.

Until the next time. You can reach George Walters at: [email protected]

Soil PH in Your Vegetable Garden

Have you ever wondered why some plants thrive in certain soils, while others struggle or fail to grow altogether? Well, in my earlier days I sure did. But thanks to my old Dad, I found that the answer often lies in the soil’s pH level. What I discovered was that soil pH plays a critical role in influencing the nutrients that are available to plants and their ability to absorb them. If you’re not too familiar with the pH scale, let me break it down for ya. It’s a tool we use to measure how acidic or alkaline a substance/soil is, and it goes from 0 to 14. When we talk about a pH of 7, that’s right smack in the middle, and we call it neutral. Anything below 7 is considered acidic, while anything above 7 is alkaline. Now, here’s where it gets important for us farmers/gardeners. Different crops need different pH levels to thrive, and we need to be mindful of that to give ’em the best shot at success. I found that some plants like it more acidic, while others prefer it to be more alkaline. The bottom line is; if we don’t pay attention to the pH requirements of our crops, they may not grow as strong and healthy as they could. So … it’s something we have to keep in mind when we’re tending our soil. For instance, asparagus plants prefer a slightly alkaline soil with a pH level between 6.0 and 8.0, while potatoes prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH level between 4.8 and 6.5. Peppers, on the other hand, prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH level between 5.5 and 7.0, while broccoli thrives in a slightly acidic to neutral soil with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. The thing is, it’s important to make sure your plants have the right pH balance to keep them healthy and growing well. Then it comes to acidic soil, certain nutrients like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus become less available, which causes limited growth and nutritional deficiencies. Whereas in alkaline soil, minerals like iron, zinc, and manganese become less available, leading to yellowing leaves and other symptoms of nutrient deficiencies. So … how can you determine your soil’s pH level?  Well, the easiest way is to use a soil test kit, which can be purchased at most garden centres or online. They give you an easy way to measure your soil’s pH level, so you can change it as needed to meet the needs of your plants. It should also be noted that the pH of your soil can be raised by adding lime if it has a high amount of acidity. And on the other side of the coin, adding sulphur can assist lowering the pH level if your soil has a high alkaline content. Furthermore, adding organic matter, such as compost, can also help to stabilize the pH of the soil, creating a more suitable environment for a wider range of plants. Finally, my old Dad used to say: “happy soil, happy crops, happy farmer!” And that’s no lie, as it’s a well-known fact among us farmers/gardeners, that soil pH can make or break a harvest.

“So, remember folks, if you want your plants to thrive, you gotta’ test that pH and get it just right. And if you’re feeling a little lost, just remember this age-old gardening wisdom: when in doubt, just give your soil a good talking to. It might not change the pH, but your plants will definitely appreciate the extra attention!”

In Closing I Would Like To Wish You Well.

You can reach George Walters at: [email protected]

What’s Happening In Cottage Country on June 1/2023

Well, here it is June 1st, man time is sure flying by. Looking outside, things like the trees are sure putting on a show with their leaves all up to size. It’s nice to see, and along with that the perennials are also about ready to show off. Our rhubarb is ready to pull, and my lovely wife will be making us a strawberry rhubarb pie either tomorrow or the next day. I sure do enjoy them.

On another note, Highway 522 is getting busier and busier every day, with lots of tourists and campers moving around looking for places to park their rigs for a month or two. It will continue like that for the remainder of the summer.

Bug report: There are still a lot of Black Flies out there irritating folks these days, along with the mosquitoes. This heat though will get rid of a lot of them, and the dragon flies will eliminate a lot more, along with the birds helping out. There is a lot going on with Nature if you take the time to notice. The old saying is that we humans need to take more time to smell the roses is so true.

Yesterday I did go to North Bay with my wife as we had to take our car into Ford as our engine light came on again. This is the second time it happened. First time $500.00 yesterday another $500.00. $109.00 Parts and $350.00 Labour. I have to tell you, things have sure gotten out of hand nowadays when it comes to what people are charging for labour. Some things I can see are warranted for them high prices, but for other things they sure aren’t. At any rate, we humans brought it on our selves, wanting this and wanting that and going into debt to get it. Some call that progress. I won’t tell you what I call it.

After we finished up at Ford we picked up a few groceries, well I should say my wife did, I waited in the car as I am still unable to walk too far. Sitting, I am okay. Once we had our groceries and a few other things, we both got ourselves a milk shake at the Dairy Queen, and headed back home. I have to tell ya, you can’t beat a Dairy Queen Milk Shake, especially chocolate.

Today is mowing day, so I had better get going as we want to beat the heat, as it is going to get quite warm as the day moves forward. I am going to see if I can use the rider today. Not sure how that will work out.

Have a great day. GW