Thanksgiving 2015

Monday, November 30, 2015

My family and I do not celebrate many holidays, but one we do look forward to every year is Thanksgiving.  Grandma brought her specialty, seven-layer salad.  My sister Charity and my mom made turkey, mashed potatoes, and bread rolls.  My youngest sister (who sells pies) made pecan, apple, pumpkin, and raisin pies, and chocolate chip cookies.
I made my super-fast homemade cranberry sauce and carrot salad, opened a can of green beans, a bag of frozen cream corn, and a can of pineapples, and set the table... This time, I adhered to tradition, resisting my e̶v̶i̶l̶  humanitarian urge to set paper plates in an effort to a̶v̶o̶i̶d̶ ̶w̶a̶s̶h̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶d̶i̶s̶h̶e̶s̶  conserve water.

Guest Post at C'est La Vie

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

I was invited by one of my favorite bloggers, Lydia of C'est La Vie, to guest post about what a lady should know about politics and government for her "Being a Lady" series.   Be sure to check out other thought-provoking posts at her blog.
Politics & Government
There are two things a lady should know about politics and government: #1 How to Stay Out of Jail, and #2 How to Vote Responsibly.  Many thanks to Lydia for inviting me to share the depths of my insights as someone who has only been to the police station a couple times, only been to jail once, and has met 14 Presidential candidates so far this election.

2015 Survey & Giveaway Results

Monday, November 23, 2015

Thank you to the 26 readers who completed my survey, and the 10 who joined the giveaway!  Congratulations to Ashley from Precious Moments!  Ashley is our randomly selected winner #1, and she will receive the 10 greeting cards.  Giveaway winner #2 is Paige from Sunday Best and All the Rest!  Paige will receive the Mini Dinner Triangle.  
Question 1: How did you find my blog?

A Church, Barns, and Fields

Saturday, November 21, 2015

The fields have been harvested, and the traffic of combines, tractors, and grain carts has dissipated.  Early November was extraordinarily beautiful.  November 2nd I had my windows open and was outside in shirtsleeves--quite the contrast with two years ago, when it snowed in October.  It has finally cooled down, and we had our first snow yesterday.
There are at least three country churches within reasonable walking distance of my home.  This one, East Friesland Presbyterian Church, recently celebrated its 150th anniversary.  A few miles away there is another church, West Friesland Presbyterian.  West Friesland church is actually northeast of the East Friesland church: they were not named for their locations, but for the part of Friesland [Frisia], Germany each congregation immigrated from.  

Presidential Candidates - #12 John Cogswell

Monday, November 16, 2015

We arrived at the Iowa Grassroots Coalition's Candidate Honest Assessment Summit early.  First we listened to a lady speak, and then I took a seat and relaxed, lackadaisically listening as a gentleman talked about how we need to amend the Constitution.  I was rudely awakened when he announced, "that's why I'm running for President."
"What?  Running for President?!"  I thought, "Who is this man?"  John Cogswell is a Colorado attorney, running for the U.S. Presidency as a Republican, but only in Iowa.  He asks Iowans to vote for him to send a message across America.  Cogswell was very pleasant when my sister and I asked to take pictures with him afterward, and he gave me an autographed copy of his book, Fix the System: Reform the Constitution.  

Liberty or Death's 2015 Survey & Giveaway!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

It's time for the 2015 Liberty or Death reader survey.  I enjoyed receiving your feedback last year, and I appreciate the time you have taken throughout the years to visit my blog and leave comments.  
I love to learn more about you and what you like.  My five-question survey is below.  Your answers will be anonymous. 

The Wild Carrot Restaurant

Thursday, November 12, 2015

After my interview with Kathleen Franck, we all went out for lunch at the Wild Carrot, in Waverly, Iowa, at Kathleen's recommendation.  We sat in a very nice dining room in the back, and the waitress brought us our menus.  My mother remarked that the decor/aura was reminiscent of the Peppercorn Pantry in Aplington, and I would have to agree.

Interview with Kathleen Franck

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

On the campaign trail, you run into many interesting people.  You start to recognize all the news reporters and camera-people, and then there are the familiar faces you see here and there and everywhere, and yet can't seem to place.  
Photos in this post are courtesy of Kathleen Franck.
One of those faces was that of Kathleen Franck.  Eventually she came across some of my photos from events she attended on Facebook and sent me a friend request.  "I know this lady," I thought, "but who is she?!"  It turned out we had both been at the same places to see Jeb BushMarco RubioDonald Trump, and Carlee Fiorina!  We finally met after listening to Ted Cruz in Waterloo.

Dubuque Model Railroad Show 2015 - Part 2

Monday, November 9, 2015

One couple I was delighted to see again at the train show was Dave and Sandy Homan of Superior Scenics.  As I noted last year, they create lakes from resin and paint, trees from jute, and grind ballast for rocks under model track.
This past year, they have been working hard on growing their business, which as Dave pointed out, is really a niche market.  A lot of railroad people, he said, don't even have layouts of their own.  So, they market their products to people building fairy gardens, doll houses, terrariums, and aquariums as well as railroad layouts.  

Dubuque Model Railroad Show 2015 - Part 1

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sunday, November 1st, my grandparents (Harry and Colleen Carson), Charity, and I left for Dubuque at 4:00 A.M. We stopped at a convenience store on the way for a quick breakfast (as nothing else seemed open), and arrived at the fairgrounds where the railroad show was held with plenty of time to set up.
After everything was ready, we relaxed, ate donuts, and visited with fellow vendors/friends from last year until the doors opened at 10:00 A.M.

Presidential Candidates - #11 Ted Cruz

Saturday, November 7, 2015

In an earlier post, I mentioned hearing Ted Cruz' father, Rafael Cruz, speak.  We caught up with Senator Cruz himself at the Iowa Grassroots Coalition's Candidate Honest Assessment Summit in Waterloo, Iowa.
Ted Cruz arrived before his scheduled start time to allow for people to meet him.  My sister and I noticed as soon as he walked in the door, so we had just about the easiest time we've ever had getting photos with a candidate.  A line formed soon after.  (I was sure to take the Cruz sticker off when the next candidate arrived...oh the joys of being undecided!)

Waltz Across Texas

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Several years ago my family was invited to sing at an evening of music at the park.  One elderly gentleman was scheduled to play his accordion and sing before we took the stage.  That man is Jim Norton.

Presidential Candidates - #10 Carly Fiorina

Monday, November 2, 2015

Carly Fiorina is another candidate I was really looking forward to seeing.  I finally got to meet her at a townhall at the Waterloo Center for the Arts on October 17th.
The secretary of the Republican Women of Black Hawk County began the meeting on time, and introduced Carly Fiorina, who took the stage two minutes later.