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Book Discussion Group

Book Discussion

Date: Wednesday, May 11th
Time: 7:00pm-8:00pm
Location:  Greenfield Public Library Community Room

BOOK INFORMATION: March by Geraldine Brooks
This novel features the father of Meg, Jo, Amy, and Beth from Little Women, his experiences in the Civil War and how it affected him.

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Opening Weekend of Inland Fishing is May 7th

With opening weekend for inland fishing this Saturday, May 7th, here is an update about 2011-12 fishing regulations

Joint Finance Committee Dissolves Regional Transit Authorities

Regional Transit Authorities (RTAs) would be dissolved under a proposal approved by the Joint Finance Committee today.  The 2011-13 budget bill ends the RTAs on the 90th day after the publication of the budget bill.  

Today's Joint Finance Committee motion repeals the authority of the affected local governments to create RTAs in the Chequamegon Bay, Chippewa Valley, Dane County and Southeastern regions, and repeals statutory references to the RTAs.  The motion also specifies that 10 days after the budget bill is published, the Southeast RTA could not impose a vehicle rental fee in the counties of Kenosha, Milwaukee and Racine. 

Menomonee Falls hiring superintendent from West Bend

Menomonee Falls School District, West Bend School District, superintendents

Patricia Herdrich, superintendent of the West Bend School District for the past six years, will take over as the top official of the Menomonee Falls School District on July 1.

Menomonee Falls School Board President Kathy Shurilla confirmed Wednesday that Herdrich was the board's top choice to replace outgoing Superintendent Keith Marty in the 2011-'12 school year.

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Battle of the Bands


Join us for the Greenfield Public Library's 3rd Annual Battle of the Bands.  

When: Saturday, June 4, 2011, 7:00-9:30
Where: In the library (5310 W Layton Ave)
Cost: $10 for adults & $5 for students
Tickets go on sale in the library on May 23rd or buy tickets that night at the door.

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Brief history (aka true story):  Approximately 5 years ago, I was on a dating website.  Exchanged a few mails, chatted on the phone, went on two dates.  Realized he wasn’t my cup of tea, moved on with my life, end of story?  NO!

Throughout the last 5 years, he has contacted me via various social networking sites.  “Would you like to go out again”, he emails.  “No thanks, I have moved on with my life, good luck to you!” I reply.  After numerous attempts, I reached the final straw.  “LEAVE ME ALONE, YOU ARE A STALKER, GO GET SOME HELP. IT’S BEEN 5 YEARS, GET A GRIP”, you get the picture. 

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BadgerCare Plus Basic Audit Reveals Major Problems


If the state of Wisconsin is subsidizing health insurance for its citizens, it should probably make sure people reaping the benefits are citizens. 

According to a Legislative Audit Bureau Report released today about the BadgerCare Plus Basic Plan, citizenship is not verified. The audit found major issues with cost-effectiveness and sustainability of the health care program, including not verifying enrollees in the program are Wisconsin residents.

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Audit Bureau releases Wisconsin Lottery report


The non-partisan Legislative Audit Bureau today released an annual review of the Wisconsin Lottery. The audit reveals the Wisconsin Lottery provided nearly $700 million in property tax relief during the last five years. 

Lottery sales increased during the last fiscal year; however, they are less than sales prior to the economic downturn. Sales increased from $473.4 million during the 2008-09 fiscal year to $480.9 million during the 2009-10 fiscal year.

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Restaurants & Tipping

When we go out to eat at a non-fast food restaurant, we usually have a buy one get one free or buy one get one at 50% off coupon.  Or, we may have a gift card.  No matter what, we always leave a tip.  Lately, we have experienced great service, so we leave a 20% tip based upon what the entire bill would have been prior to the coupon or percentage taken off.   Just because we have a percentage off or "free" coupon or gift card does not mean that the good service goes unrewarded.  

If service is not good, we tip accordingly...or , we don't return to the establishment.

Hi, Ma! I'm home

Another spring, another trip to the USBC Open Championships in the books.  Won't you join me and My-Sugar-Na in reliving the first week in May?

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Don't blame me!!!!

Let’s argue about the beginning of time.  I say it happened in 7 days, you say it was evolution.  Whatever the case may be, chances are we won’t be in agreement on this issue any time soon.

How about religion?  I say that the right way is Christianity, you claim Atheism.  Add that one to our list of topics which cannot be resolved in a matter of minutes or hours. 

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Rabbit Wars

bulb, garden, landscape, lawn, parks, perennial, plants, spring, yard, tree, rabbit, pest, winter

I look out my front window seething, watching well-fed bunnies happily hopping all around my yard. Don't let them fool you - even though they are fluffy and cute, they are pure evil under all that silky soft fur and innocent demeanor.  Just ask Elmer Fudd and his friends – who have hunted and tracked their silly prey for over 70 years.  Bugs Bunny is less interested in escape than in driving his pursuer insane and can be heard to say (with casual unconcern), “What’s Up, Doc?”.  Well, bunnies, I will hunt you down, trap you all, and get rid of you – for the next 70 years if I have to!  You have eaten your last tulip just as it opens up – sawing off the flower stem with a diagonal bite and leaving the flower petals to dry up on the lawn in the spring sun.  To use your own catchphrase, "Of course you realize this means war!" This is not fun and games.  You seriously have to go.

All kidding aside, rabbits wreak havoc on yards, gardens, and parks where thousands of dollars of trees, shrubs, annuals, bulbs, and garden plants are eaten every year.  Besides munching on the flower heads and tender sprouts in the spring, they do the most damage in the winter when they are foraging for food to fill their nutritional needs.  Have you seen any areas where the bark of your shrubs or young saplings have had their bark scraped off not too far up the base?  Many times you can see where the hard packed snow provides a hill around the trunk that gives them ample access and the ability to stand up on their hind legs and reach as far up as they can. This is called “girdling”.  They girdle the saplings to reach the tree's cambium layer, a coating of sap under the thin bark that provides the tree with nutrients and acts as antifreeze.  Once the inside is exposed, extreme cold weakens the tree’s defenses, allowing it to freeze and inviting disease and pests to get in and kill it.  Parks, golf courses, and botanical gardens (not to mention home and business owners with yards) have to pay the price – replacing the costly vegetation.  This can be $50,000+ a year for a greenscape such as a golf course. 

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Tourist in Milwaukee Day

vacation, The Pabst Mansion, The Pfister, Milwaukee Coach & Carriage, Milwaukee, Tourist, Wisconsin

I've lived in the greater Milwaukee area for my entire life. Aside from a six month stint in Florida, Wisconsin is all I know. I love The Great North Woods, I've appreciated Door County, I've relaxed in Prairie du Chien, and I've learned about writing in Madison. I love the candy shop in Eagle River and the Taco John's in Waukesha. Wisconsin is where I've worked and played for decades.

That having been said, I'm not a big lover of downtown Milwaukee. I'm not sure why, but I get lost everytime I've attempted to get somewhere in the city. I get disoriented and can't remember which side of me the lake is on, so I'm never sure which direction I'm traveling. I've been to the museum, Summerfest and the Bradley Center, but I tend to avoid all activities that will require dealing with the one way streets, lack of parking and excessive amounts of traffic that I associate with being downtown.

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Squirrel War

bird, bulb, education, garden, lawn, pest, pets, plants, seeds, yard, squirrel

Move over bunnies, my next enemy is the squirrel.  These tree rats cause a lot of havoc in our yards, eating bird seed, digging up lawns, shorting out transformers, snipping off buds on trees and shrubs, and when populations are large they can also eat the bark on trees like rabbits do.

What bugs me the most about them are the saucer type digs they create all over my yard. And they are bold!  I would move the earth back when I found one and a few hours later they would be back with a new one!  These pint-sized archeologists are looking for history, which in their case is only last year’s history – nuts that they thought they buried.  I wonder how many they actually find?  I’ll bet the percentage is very low. If they could remember, there would be fewer holes in my yard.

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It's been a good run

When I look back at the past 43 or so years, I can say that I've done OK.  From surviving childhood, to being The Man at the former West Milwaukee High School to a decent bowling career and good family.

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1,000,000 CHANCES...

When does an individual comprehend internal pain?  Where do we learn to harm one another?  Is it via the family, television or video games?  When is it time to say “enough” to someone who may or may not apologize for behavior which has been acknowledged or confronted?  

If your mind is wired correctly, chances are, you know how to behave and treat others.

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Summer Information

I just want to remind everyone of a few summer related issues.

National Night Out

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Weather forecast

The way I look at it, using "Weather forecast" as a blog title is guaranteed to increase the amount of page hits.  Between my Vegas/Reno trip report (which I linked to in numerous other locations) and this title, maybe I can make up for the two months in which I didn't blog.

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What's in your closet?

If someone were to search through your personal belongings, what would they find?  A wallet, identification, credit card, possibly some change?  

How about your desk at work?  If you took a gander in mine, one would find files, books, CD’s, a newspaper or two, drink mix, soup and assorted odds and ends.  I also have some perfume for the just in case times.   Other than that, it’s pretty boring.

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Preparing a New Planting Bed

garden, landscape, outdoor activity, pest, plants, water, yard, planting bed, vegetable, prepare

I get asked often about how to start a new planting bed - for flowers, veggies, whatever.  We had a planting bed on the side of the house that got all day sun, and had very little growing there, so we decided to use it to grow tomatoes and peppers.  I documented the steps in pictures as we went through it. 

If you have a potential place you would like to start a new planting bed, look closely at the site.  Assess how much sun it gets, is the soil poor? Drainage good? Anything growing there already?  In my example, I checked the sun exposure at various times of the day to make sure that what I wanted to use it for would get enough sun.  Match the plants to the hours of sun it will get each day.  We wanted a good place for tomatoes and had very little sun in our backyard, so we decided to take advantage of the extra sun we were getting on the south side of our house. It's a small space, but you can grow quite a bit in a small space. 

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