Blog Archives

K-8, K-eight, Kate, Kate the Great

Okay- it’s really more like the Kansas Sampler, but that doesn’t have the same ring as ‘Kate the Great’ does it?  logo

  “Kate’s 8” will actually  be a regular feature on the towns I visit and what I see as their “8”

According to the Kansas Sampler Foundation, there are eight things every community has. No matter their size, large or small, they can all drum up their eight with a little creativity.

Once you identify your eight, begin building on them and see how many ways you get people to come to your town!

The eight are:

Art, Architecture, Geography, Commerce, People, History, Customs & Cuisine

IMG_7363How do YOU define each in your community??  Is your Art murals? Is it sculpture? Is it the garden layed out in the design of the Queen of England? -Use your imagination

Even if it’s only the Avon lady… it’s still commerce! And it counts. It’s a start. And obviously somebody believes.

What is your history? Do you have a museum? The only stone jail in the state? When was your community settled? A long tradition of ‘old school’ music?   100_0219Find your own version of history and use it.

Cuisine is everything from Sunday church picnics to that fabulous smoked ham the neighbor makes. Maybe someone makes the best pies this side of the Mississippi. Maybe you have the BBQ joint.

People are everyone. You have people. That’s a start!   Tell stories about them. Celebrate376935_3912363420016_771502863_n them!

Customs can be anything from the yearly Church Social to the community Christmas Tree. It can be past customs. (that way it can also double up as history) Did your town used to have something? Do you celebrate Ukrainian Easter or other ethnic holidays? What do you have?

Architecture– I love architecture. All Kinds! Old buildings (especially with vintage or art deco designs or signs… Oh, hey! That’s also Art!! Bonus!) , 2014-05-18 11.20.40new buildings, churches, schools, barns, out houses etc… What do YOU have?

IMG_6944Geography is  everything from the sweeping vistas of the prairies to the woodlands and in between.  Every place has geography. Rivers, lakes, mountains and so on.

So, go on! Be creative. Involve everyone. Ask around. You’ll be amazed at how differently each person views ‘the eight’

“Kate’s 8”  will be ongoing features of the “K-8” that I find in the towns I visit.

What’s in your town?

~Katy~

Need a speaker? Call us! We give talks on rural and small communities and business and how they can grow using just what is at hand as well as showcasing fabulous ideas that other towns have embraced and turned into huge wins.  www.taitandkate.com  We can also show you ways to get the C.A.V.E (citizens against virtually everything) people on board too.

 

 

 

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Glitter ducks and ‘FlaminCows’

Had ya’ll at ‘Glitter Duck’ didn’t I??? blingduck

We were at an auction last night, and they were selling some duck decoys.  So I related the story of my duck decoy buying experience.

Many years ago, a whole boodle of beautiful duck decoys came up for bid. I mis-understood and when the gavel fell and the man hollered “How Many??” I, of course hollered right back “Well- ALL of them!!, DUhhhhh”

Hubby immediately jumps up with a “OH, HELL NO” of his own.  In the end I got One duck. Sighhhhhhh.

Hubby: What the heck-o do you want them all for anyway???                                                    Me: I’m going make Glitter Ducks for our duck pond!

Why??? Because I could, and I thought my 1 goose and 1 duck and assorted chickens would enjoy seeing them float around.

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Part of my personal herd

Which brings us to the FlaminCows. Have you ever seen one in the wild??? They look suspiciously like their cousins the Flamingo. But cooler.

 

Around the same time as the Glitter Duck incident, we lived on small acreage. I wanted a cow. Hubby said N-O.

Then I drove by a flower shop and spied a huge plastic yard ‘Mingo. It immediately got a paint job and some smaller ones to go with it.

Viola!!~ I had my very own HERD.

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Hanging with Metal Man

 

In an interesting twist, people driving by would pull in and ask where I got such cool critters…. I ended up painting selling a bunch that summer! ~ Still keep a small herd to watch over the garden.

~Katy~

 

The Fashionably Fabulous SakHat™ ~

SakHat ~ What is it???

Nicole modeling her hat

The fashionably fabulous SakHat is just what the name implies. A hat made from a sack! Mainly they are made from repurposed burlap and linen coffee/feed/seed bags.

Get one now!

Get one now!

Many of the bags I use are vintage.

Sustainable Couture.

Buffalo Style.

I love being able to make design fashionable, useable items! These are my way of merging America’s agricultural history with fabulous vintage graphics into something new and exciting. Each one is fully lined.

You can wear your SakHat  while on the river or on your yacht.

Nicole on the River

Nicole on the River

On your horse, in the garden, at work, the beach, the football game, camping, glamping, bicycling… anywhere!

Nora in KY loves hers!

Nora in KY loves hers!

Wear it to shade or eyes or just to show off a unique fashion accessory! Either way- you’ll look fabulous!

Order yours at http://www.buffalogalsmercantile.comcom or click here SakHat

~**Custom orders and special requests are always welcome**~ and latest creations can be seen on our Buffalo Gals Mercantile FB page.

~Katy~

 

Super simple Chicken Ala King

IMG_1142   This simple recipe is a great way to have a ‘traditional’ Ala King or rev it up with leftover garden veggies or whatever else sounds good.

1 stick Butter           2/3 C flour       a tsp of salt

2 C chicken broth       2 C Milk

2 C cubed and cooked chicken

2 -3+ C  mushrooms and peas

In saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk quickly to form a stiff roux. Add chicken broth and milk and whisk. Stir over medium heat until thickened. (about 10 min) Add in Chicken and veg and cook until everything is heated. Pour over noodles, rice, toast or mashed potatoes.  ( it’s great over garlic toast!)

**Tahhh-Dahhh!**

IMG_1136 IMG_1137

~ Handy dandy hints and tips:

Chicken: we just dice up a couple chix breasts. You can use leftover chicken too. Or turkey.

No Chicken? That’s ok too! use pork! or leave the chicken out and pour the sauce over steak medallions.

Broth can be whatever is handy… Campbells or Swansons (or whoever) ready made broth, leftover stock, bullion cubes (if you use these- dissolve in boiling water first.. we use extra cubes for better flavor)

Veg: Use whatever sounds good… tomatoes, dill- gives it a fabulous extra flavor, garlic, onions, chives – I like Portabella mushrooms, ~ it’s a great way to get rid of some excess produce.

Stretch is as leftovers… you can reuse the sauce as a fabulous soup! just reheat on medium and add a little more broth or milk and more goodies. Makes a good cheezy soup base.  forks

Whisk: If you don’t own a whisk (my son 😉 )  use two forks. Many times it a actually works better. Like on eggs.

It takes about as long to boil a pound of noodles as it takes the sauce  to thicken.

Enjoy!

~Katy~

I am “Country Woman” ~ hear me roar!

Every year Farm and Ranch Guide puts on a Country Woman of the Year contest.

People are supposed to write in why they think their woman should win…. But there are guidelines… Community involvement, Special deeds, Involvement with the daily operations etc.  ~  This implies all manner of things.DSCN5883

Most of the women nominated log long hours in real production in crops and livestock, they are active in church and volunteer for nearly everything, blah- blah- blah. All without a hair out of place. You know the types.

Don’t get me wrong~I am not disparaging them in any way. Many of the nominated women are my neighbors. Some of them have won. I admire these women.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I asked Hubby once WHY he didn’t nominate me. He said because I am none of those things, but am Everything to him. (and that he sucks at writing)

That being said- I AM a Country Woman of the Year… Day in and day out. Year after year.

I don’t need a contest to tell me so. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“I can bring home the Bacon…. Fry it up in a pan…….”  Remember that commercial? That about sums it up.

In my little world, I am the one who raises the kids and attends school functions, nurses the bottle babies (Calves and Kitties alike), bakes fresh bread every couple days, Cooks from scratch every meal, minds the garden, cans more goods than a grocery store, gate girl when it’s blizzarding and -30 out, sews and mends, shuffles hubby and vehicles from field to field, watches the markets, tracks the weather, brings him lunch in OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthe field, never ever calls him when he’s out with the guys, works from home, goes to church, does the parts running, beer fairy,  handles correspondence and the usual round of maid chores too. I  put a good spin on things when they go awry and make hubby feel better about it.  I  am20140906_173647 constantly championing small business in rural communities, attend Downtowners Conferences on my own dime and time so I can better myself and my community, make a quilt every year to donate for raffle at charity, finds the humor in the dark times, mend broken hearts and bruised egos, teach the kids to dream, keeper of the memories and family stories, teaches others how to bake and sew, butchers chickens with the best of them, run a small business of my own, don’t complain when our plans are cancelled yet again 20141128_101658(1)because ‘We have to go to the field, NOW’, I know that  boots DO go with everything, and more. ~ I know that there are 3 big social functions (4 in a good year!) … Two farm shows and a Pheasants  4ever banquet (you can sub- cattlemans, DU or whatever)  If it’s a good year- a trip the fair gets tossed in. Otherwise my social engagements are solo.

Things I won’t or don’t do? I refuse to ever again “Hold that panel, damnit!” when the BULL is making a break for it nor do I drive his big boy toys.

I am proud to support my Hubby- an American Farmer-  behind the scenes in all these little ways.

~Katy~

Why Burlap??

 Why not?
It’s versatile, biodegradable, recyclable and more.
Hessian or Burlap as it is called in the US, is made from a tall, grass like plant called Jute. It is cut and woven.jute%20oogst

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  I use burlap in many of the projects I make at Buffalo Gals Mercantile. I love the rustic-ness of it. The graphics on the vintage bags are fabulous and truly speak of our Agricultural roots and early advertising.

Burlap is biodegradable- we actually use the scraps on the garden. It’s a natural soil enhancer and weed barrier. We just till it in at the end of the season.  “Post consumer burlap compost creates a constantly renewable product that increases soil fertility, rather than depleting it” -The Green Building Handbook

10256824_501759616595111_2700429621183935268_nBurlap is recyclable. –  Use old bags to make purses, chair covers, window treatments, accessories, table runners, stuffed animals, lamp shades … the ideas are limitless really.  Here’s a link to Pintrest  with fabulous ideas!

Did you know…. Statistics show that Burlap is quickly gaining  in popularity and  may surpass Cotton as the most used natural fiber?

Burlap is Eco-Friendly & Eco- Chic .   A great way to use it is as a market tote. No more plastic bags! And it’s quite the fashion statement as well.

~Katy~

 

 

 

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