• The ice storm of 2009 will go down as one of the worst if not the worst on record, with that said soon if not already electricity will be restored, water will be restored, clean up will begin, and we will go about our lives as if nothing happened.  However there is still a nagging long-term problem, trees! The scars from this storm are going to be troubling us for years.  We will be cutting down and pruning up trees of all sizes and ages.

    This is only going to cause problems down the road!

  • I suspect most of you have no idea about the person and the saintly episode that is commemorated each Feb. 14 by friends, family and most importantly, lovers.

    In fact, there are several versions of how the most romantic Saint became a commercial success.

  • I haven't had a lot of news articles lately mainly because it's winter and I don't have a lot to say. But recently, I had a question that made me think. Which is the best houseplant?

    Obviously, that is up to debate because most people have their favorites. There are people that love African violets, those that love cactus and those that just love anything tropical looking. But I sat down one day to ponder just which is the one best houseplant.

  • We received a call last week concerning an abandoned dog living on the Calvary side of Lovers Lane. The caller stated that this dog had been left behind by a family that had moved out. We were also informed at this time that the dog was a female, and she had a litter of seven pups. She had also been hit by a car and her left front leg was permanently damaged. So we're talking about a stray dog with pups and on top of all that she was a three legged dog, not exactly the ideal dog to adopt out.  

  • This week's recipes are from my odds and ends file (pile.)

    The Swiss Broccoli Casserole is one I tried a few months ago. It received mixed reviews. Everyone said they liked it, but a few felt they liked the traditional cheddar (or Velveeta) rather than the Swiss cheese.

    The Pineapple Muffin recipe also ended up in the odds and ends, though I'm not sure why. They are delicious, a great addition to any meal.

    Everyone seems to like them.

  • Do not be confused, Flower is the first name (she only goes by one name like Cher or Madonna) of our resident skunk this year. I haven't actually smelled her around the farm lately, I smelled someone else on my way home one evening. It was a welcomed warning smell so we can be prepared.

    Don't get me wrong, I don't dislike Flower, I just want to be on alert when the mating season begins.

  • The Save the Animals Foundation has had funds donated recently to assist pet owners with spays and neuters during the annual Spay Day USA event. Low cost spay/neuters will be offered.

    The promotion begins Feb. 1 and will continue as long as funds are available.

    Male cats will start as low as $29, female cats as low as $39.

    Alterations will include a Rabies vaccine. Dogs will start as low as $50 and will also include a Rabies vaccine. Additional vaccines will be offered at discounted prices. These prices are for uncomplicated surgeries only.

  • I got this chicken cobbler recipe from my hometown newspaper in Illinois.

    If you need an easy, tasty casserole that is an entire meal, this is a good one. Just add a salad and you're good to go.

    It reheats well the next day and if you don't like cornbread, substitute a biscuit-type topping or even puff pastry.

    I've added one cup of sliced mushrooms, one-half cup of sour cream and one-half teaspoon black pepper to the original recipe. You can leave them out if you want.

    Dianne Sanders' Chicken Cobbler

    1 large onion, chopped

  • USDA Farm Service Agency announced today it will begin issuing more than $162 million in Tobacco Transition Payment Program (TTPP) payments to quota holders and producers in Kentucky. Payments for 2009 and subsequent year payments will be made every Jan. 15.

  • The 2009 Kentucky Dairy Development Council / Alltech Barn Meetings throughout the Commonwealth are being held Jan. 20 through Feb. 24.  The next meeting is Monday, Jan. 26, at the Taylor County Extension Office, located at 1143 S. Columbia Avenue in Campbellsville.

  • One of the best things about January is all the good catalogs that come in the mail.  It is much easier to believe that spring will come again when you have a stack of catalogs that show glossy pictures of fruits, vegetables and flowers.  The extra time spent indoors by the fire also allows us to spend some time plotting and planning what we want to add to the garden in 2009.

  • I was wondering how the sales of the animal tags were going in the City of Lebanon, so I stopped in city hall to check. I was shocked at the answer. "Ninety" was the reply that I received. Although the city ordinance went into effect the first of the year, I was surprised with the number since there has been limited publicity of these new laws. This weekly article, our time slot on Mike FM 100.9 (every Friday at 7:40 a.m.) and the local news coverage from our media friends have been the only ways Lebanon residents have learned of the new laws.

  • The farm looks like a storm hit recently but it's really just my husband's new deer deterrent technique.  It seems to be working.

    In the past, we have forgone the Irish Spring soap, human hair and coyote urine for more reliable barriers. Tomato cages, tobacco stakes, wire, spiral plastic trunk wrap, and, yes, an occasional arrangement of lawn chairs have created distance between rutting and browsing deer.

    This year seems to be the worst ever so our anxiety was high after the New Year.

  • The new 2009 Spring Wheelbarrow Series gardening classes are set to start in March.

    This year I have tried to put together an array of topics to have something to interest most gardeners.

    Like last year, the series will run in the spring with classes coming every two weeks from March through June with all but one class meeting at the Washington County Extension Office.

    It costs $5 to attend any or all of the classes however some of them do have additional charges for supplies.

  • My automatic response to snow flurries is to make a pot of soup. It's warm and comforting and making it is my way of fighting the cold.

    I used to love snow when I was younger, but not so much now. It is beautiful though.

    Last week, when it snowed I made chicken soup from a new recipe and it turned out great. My family really liked it.

    She what yours thinks.

    Chicken Soup #3

    2 T. oil.

    2 onions, finely chopped

    2-3 large carrots, thinly sliced

    4 stalks celery, thinly sliced

    4 cloves garlic, minced

  • PET OF THE WEEK - Chloe is a playful beagle already spayed and ready to go into a loving, caring home. She is a senior at 7 years old but such a sweety and still playful. If your pet is missing, call the shelter-it may be there. For a complete listing of pets with pictures visit adoption@petfinder.com. The shelter reminds pet owners that all cats and dogs should have a rabies shot. To adopt an animal, potential owners must complete an adoption application. The animal shelter accepts stray or unwanted animals. The shelter is located off of KY 208 and is open from noon until 5 p.m.

  • Here at the Marion County Animal Shelter we are starting to receive calls concerning the welfare of outside animals. No sign of being fed, water bowl stays empty or dirty, no shelter and "chained up in a mud pit..." we get all kinds of complaints concerning all types of animals from all types of people. If you are an animal owner and your animals are where someone can see them, they will call on you if you are mistreating them.

  • Many of our tropical houseplants aren't so happy indoors during the winter. Low light levels and low humidity are contrary to there tropical nature.

    There are some plants in the house, however, that don't seem to be phased by indoor winter conditions.

    If you have moderate light you can maintain a nearly non-stop bloom cycle with African violets. Their fleshy, fuzzy leaves are their defense against lack of humidity; and with adequate sunlight, some fertilizer and well-drained soil you can keep them blooming all year round.

  • This week's recipes are delicious ways to get that favorite of Popeye's, spinach, in your diet.

    Fresh spinach is best, whether in the Hot Spinach-Cheese Dip or the Spinach Pie.

    The dip is great, with crackers, chips or veggies. It makes a nice appetizer party food.

    Even so-called spinach haters will like this.

    Marge Craddock is from my hometown of Sidell, Ill., and her recipe for spinach pie is really easy and good.

    It's a terrific meatless dish.

    You'll like it if you try it.

    Hot Spinach Cheese Dip

  • I can't believe it's almost 2009! I've lived in Kentucky now for 35 years. I bought land in 1973 from a want ad in Mother Earth News magazine. It was right across the Taylor County line on Tallow Creek Road.

    I lived there in a little A-frame house in the woods for several years.

    I had been working in Champaign, Ill., at the university for a long time and really wanted to move to the country.

    Boy, did I get the country!

    We didn't have running water at first and an outhouse was a short walk from the back door.