Welcome To My Blog

Weekends are for wandering Wisconsin. That's what Rick, my guy, and I do. Occasionally we wander during the week, too. Sometimes we just drop in on other people's lives.

This blog is my way of sharing where we've been, neat places and things to do that we've found.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Toadally Artful

Last weekend I paid a quick visit to my sister and brother-in-law in Sheldon. I arrived on Friday night and that meant fish fry so we went to the Tee-A-Way Golf Club in Ladysmith. The next day we spent some time at the Rusk County Farmers' Market. Lots of summer vegetables – zucchini, tomatoes, beans  were for sale as well as sheep milk cheese. I bought Dante Lamb for gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. The milk for the cheese is produced by the Wisconsin Sheep Dairy Cooperative. Sheep milk is shipped to cheese factories all over the U.S. I can even buy the co-op's artisanal cheeses here in Madison at Fromagination on the Capitol Square.

Later in the day we stopped at Toad House.  Toad House is a combination museum, gallery, classroom, workshop, soon-to-be bakery and coffee shop, and eventually, a place where people can stay over a few nights and make art. Just before we arrived, children had finished making delightful sun catchers using material they found on the grounds.

I can't remember the original house that was on
this site and underneath what we see today.
However, in two short years, Eileen and Tony Ziesler
have transformed the place into something special
 in the Ladysmith community.
This sun catcher's base is a paper plate.
The design in the center is covered with
clear contact paper on both sides to let
the light through. It's a very clever art
project that children can do at home, too.

One never knows what might be encountered while strolling the
paths in the woods behind Toad House. It's magical.
Flowers and vegetables are growing in the Toad House
Patty pan squash ready for a delicious dish.

Sunday was one of those perfect Wisconsin summer days – the temperature had dropped to the 50s overnight, the morning was cool, and the daytime temperature rose appropriately to the high 70s. So what did we do? Cut, split, and stacked wood for my brother-in-law's wood furnace. This furnace provides the main heat source for the house.  Propane from a supplementary tank kicks in when needed, but my sister figures it won't be empty for another two more years.

Northern Wisconsin has received much more rain than we
have here in the southern part of the state. My sister's
flowers have filled in nicely around the house.
My brother-in-law cut and split 1 1/2 face cords. My sister
and I hauled and stacked it. Good exercise, for sure.
Later we took a ride down to the Jump River and through the woods. When I was still in Sheldon, cows used to pasture in those woods surrounding the house and the area was like a park  no tall weeds or underbrush, cow paths on which to take a walk. A very different sight today. My father retired from dairy farming 20 years ago and cows haven't been in that woods since.
Even with all the rain, the river is still low. The water must have
evaporated because of all the unseasonable heat we've had
in the past several weeks.
A lone small sunflower amidst the lush vegetation down at the river bank. 
I took a less-traveled route back to Madison on Sunday for about half of the way. It was undeniably one of the best days for top-down driving that we've had all summer. (Top-down on my car, of course!)

1 comment:

  1. I noticed that northern Wisconsin, heck almost every part of Wisconsin, got more rain than Dane County. Toad House sounds like lots of fun!