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Features

  • 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.

  • Plant and seed catalogs will be jamming the mailbox any day now. I always feel like January ushers in a clean slate for the garden: optimism abounds among the fresh ideas and new goals; and promises never to repeat a crop busting mistake are sharp in my memory.

    Sometimes the slate stays clean; sometimes it doesn’t.  Either way the next couple of months can be used to plan and prepare for the next growing season.

    Don’t get over whelmed by (or over indulge in) all the catalogs until you actually decide on what you want to accomplish for the year.

  • I discovered tomatillos on a trip to Mexico in 1973. I saw them in an outdoor market and they were so unusual looking, like little green tomatoes enclosed in a husk. They looked like miniature Chinese lanterns.

    I bought some and asked the lady what to do with them (in very bad Spanish.)

    I didn't understand exactly what she was telling me, but I know it included onions, garlic and chicken.

    When I got back home, I looked for recipes and started to collect quite a few.

  • Most of us know that the popular spice ginger comes from the root of the plant.

    Well, really it is a rhizome, and the hot and pungent flavor has more to it then just a taste sensation.  

    Ginger got its name from the Sanskrit word sringavera which means "root shaped like a horn." It has been used by the Romans, the Chinese, Europeans and others for thousands of years and has been endowed with an herbal and medicinal reputation.

  • When I arrived at the Marion County Animal Shelter Monday morning, I was surprised to find a freshly cut Christmas tree, with all the trimmings, had been placed in our lobby. We had put up a fake tree a couple of weeks ago but this one was different, it was a real tree and all of the ornaments were hand made with material that you can find out in the woods. Red berries were strung up and placed on the tree along with other nuts, berries, pinecones and on top of the tree was a crystal stone that had been roughly cut to resemble the Star of Bethlehem.

  • Lilah is a Jack Russell and full of energy. She needs a home without cats, where she will get the care and attention that she needs. 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. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m.

  • This December has been a cold one thus far. I don't mind a gloomy day here or there, I actually find them somewhat restorative.

    Too many in a row, though, can be sort of depressing.

    We all say we want winter interest but sometimes we forget about it once spring rolls around and we get excited about a new season.

    Have you selected things that will capture your eye in January? Look out the window and tell yourself what you see and then take some notes.

  • Hanukkah means "dedication" in Hebrew and refers to the time in 165 B.C. when a small army of Jews won a battle with a much larger Greek force and liberated the temple in Jerusalem.

    It had been occupied by Greek worshipers of Zeus and needed many repairs.

    When they attempted to re-light the eternal flame, they had only enough oil for one day.

    However, it burned for eight full days, enough time for more oil to be prepared. The temple was re-dedicated to the God of the Jewish people, thus Jews the world over celebrate Hanukkah, or the Festival of Lights.

  • Annie Oakly 7-month-old Cocker Spaniel mix who needs a loving, caring forever home. She is all puppy! That means lots of chewing and playing. She can be shy at first but warms up quickly. 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.

  • PET OF THE WEEK - Rita is a Chihuahua mix and current on her rabies. She is house broken but will have to be spayed. She will let you know when someone is around. 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.

  • I keep a special section in my holiday cooking file of super-easy, super-good Christmas candy and cookies.

    These are the recipes I've used for many years. They are foolproof and delicious, I guarantee.

    The first cookie is a roll-out sugar cookie, the one my grandmother Dillon made all during my childhood. I've used it ever since I started cooking and make at least a double recipe every year since my girls were little.

    I make them in many shapes and we decorate them with colored icing. It's a treasured memory for all of us.