Things Aren’t Going Well ….

Sorry for the delay; things are not going well for my brother.  As the eldest, I’ve been very involved with his problems (he is unmarried).

Later tonight, I will be back in San Antonio … hoping to help the situation.

I hope to be back to writing by the 1st of August.

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on July 25, 2011 at 3:55 pm  Comments Off on Things Aren’t Going Well ….  
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Camp Cooking: Some Lunch Tips

Lunch is often a quick meal because campers are busy with other activities. Here are a few quick tips!

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Some Quick Tips for Lunch While Camping

  • Don’t make camping lunches the night before.
  • Substitutes for a sandwich:  a couple of hard-boiled eggs (with salt & pepper), left-over roast or fried chicken.
  • When boiling eggs, white vinegar added to the boiling water will keep the white part from running out of the cracked shell.
  • Gamey-smelling lunch boxes (or bags) will smell sweet if you place a slice of bread (dampened with vinegar) in the lunch container overnight.

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Today’s Recipe

Food just tastes better while camping!  Maybe it is because camp cooking takes longer and we are ravenous by the time it’s ready!

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Dutch Oven Biscuits 

This is a very simple recipe!  It serves 6 to 10.

Mix Bisquick-type mix according to recipe directions on the box.  DO NOT OVER-STIR THE MIX!

1)  Put the hot coals outside of the fire pit.  Oil a large Dutch oven inside thoroughly.

2)  Set the Dutch oven on the coals to heat for about 10 minutes.

3)  Spoon the mixture into the Dutch oven and cover with the lid.

4)  Shovel hot coals onto the Dutch oven’s lid.  Cook for 20 -30 minutes, depending on how hot the coals are.

5)  After 20 minutes, check the biscuits.  They are ready when they are lightly browned.

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‘Secret Lake – used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~ 

Published in: on July 13, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (2)  
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When a Moose Calf Grows Up

This article is the second 1/2 of the Life Cycle of a Moose.  The first part was:  ‘And Another Thing about Moose Cows & Calves‘ *

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Moose are magnificent animals that live in the colder regions of Alaska, Canada and northern-most US states.

Mother Moose is constantly teaching her babies during that first winter.   If the calf does not learn enough, it will die in the first year of life.

Nature also has a hand in the life of a moose calf.  Depending on the region and food available, calves may die in the first year for other reasons:  accidents, disease, malnutrition, drowning and being attacked by predators.

A Confusing Spring

If the moose mother gets pregnant in the fall after his birth, the calf will face a staggering shock in early spring.  After being constant companions for many months, the calf’s mother will suddenly chase him away!

The calf cannot understand the change.  He may try to follow her for days … or even weeks. Those yearlings born with a sibling are the lucky ones; they have a traveling companion.

Singleton yearlings may try to join an adult bull.  The adult may allow this for a while.  However, at rutting time, he will not want the competition and will drive him away.

If a yearling tries to join a different mother moose and her calf, she will not tolerate it.

Occasionally, a mother moose does not become pregnant during the next rutting season.  In this case, the yearling gets to stay with his mother for a while. 

During the next mating season, either the mother or the bull will drive him away, fearing he is a sexual rival.

Moose Socialization

There are only 2 events of moose socialization:  the close relationship between a cow and her calf and the short period of mating.  The rest of the time, moose are solitary wanderers.

Moose Facts 

  • Moose reach their prime between ages 5 and 10.
  • Moose grow new antlers from scratch each year!
  • Moose antlers in velvet are still sensitive; by the time the velvet falls off, the antlers are hard bone.
  • Moose grow their antlers just for the rut!

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* The original article in this Moose series is:  ‘Moose: Giants of the North

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Coming Soon:  Moose Mating!

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October Moose‘ used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 11, 2011 at 12:04 am  Comments Off on When a Moose Calf Grows Up  
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Sunday Special: How About a Truck Tailgate Graphic?

Some states frown on rear window graphics for the back window of a vehicle.  However, there’s a new wrinkle ….

Are you aware that  most rear window graphics are convertible into a graphic for the back of your truck (or other vehicle)?

Rear Window Graphics

Essentially, a rear window graphic is a piece of vinyl that is 50% vinyl and 50% holes.  It makes it possible to see out of the back window (for safety); yet the person standing outside of the vehicle can’t see inside.

Good reasons for adding a rear window graphic:  It reduces heat inside the vehicle, protects the upholstery from fading and offers privacy and safety (a single woman might feel safer where it isn’t obvious that she’s the only  person riding in the car/truck).

It is easy to find your vehicle in a crowded parking lot, because it is different … not exactly like the dozens of other cars of the same color, make and model.

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Rear Window Graphics set your vehicle apart from the rest! Take your vehicle out of the 'wall-flower' class!

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Truck Tailgate Graphics

These graphics do NOT go on the back window because they are solid vinyl.  They are laminated for long-wear.

Installation is like that of the rear window graphic and should last more than 5 years.  Easily removed from your car or truck, the vinyl won’t mar the paint finish.

In fact, having a tailgate graphic actually protects your paint job from minor wear-and-tear.

Care of Vinyl Graphics 

Whether your graphic is for the tailgate or the back window, there are some rules for protecting your investment.

1)   Avoid running the graphic through a car wash for at least a week.  This gives the adhesives time to firmly bond to the vehicle.

2)  Commercial car washes are fine. If you are using a do-it-yourself car wash, do not hold the wash wand closer than ten inches to the graphic’s surface.

Prices & Sizes

I’ll cover this next weekend.  In the meantime, if you are interested, drop a line to my email (marylouise @ greatghilliesandgraphics.com) and I’ll get a price for you and email it back!

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Glowing Dust” – used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics 

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Monday:  Rest of the Life Cycle of the Moose!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 10, 2011 at 12:53 am  Comments Off on Sunday Special: How About a Truck Tailgate Graphic?  
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And Another Thing about Moose Cows & Calves …

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Enemies of the Moose include: Black, Brown and Grizzly Bears, Wolves and Coyotes. However, man is the moose's greatest enemy: We keep encroaching on his habitat.

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Fascinating Facts about Moose Cows & Calves

After the fall mating season for the moose, the cows search for a secure spot to have their young.  She usually looks for a place that offers three things:  security, food and water.

Typically, the cow chooses an island or peninsula near a pond, river or lake.  The gestation period is about 240 days (or 8 months) and the calf or calves are born in May or June.

The New Calf

After a labor of about 1 hour, the cow has her offspring lying down.  She immediately starts to bond with her baby by licking the calf and nuzzling against the babes.

Mother provides milk soon after the birth, while both are still lying down.  After a few days, the calf can easily reach it’s standing mother to nurse.  Within a week of birth, the babe can easily outrun any human who wants to run along!

Calves and Danger

Unlike some of her cousins, moose moms take their children wherever they go.  This is different from deer, that tend to hide their babies while seeking food.

Moose moms feel assured that they can defend their calves from any predators.  In fact, they are some of the most protective parents in the wild kingdom!

Mothers who have lost their youngsters are some of the most dangerous animals on earth!  They will stop at nothing to get their babes back.

Don’t ever get between a moose mom and her calf/calves.  It’s just not a very healthy place to be!

As the Calf Grows

At birth, the calf is about 3 feet long and 3 feet tall, and weighs 25 – 30 lbs.  During the first month, the calf gains about 2 lbs. per day!  Calves start foraging full-time and stop taking its mother’s milk at about 5 months of age.

Mother Moose is constantly teaching her babies during that first winter.   If the calf does not learn enough, it will die in the first year of life.

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Soon:  As soon as the Moose Mom is ready to have a new calf, something fascinating and awful happens.  Find out what … next time!

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 ‘Northwoods Moose’ is used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 7, 2011 at 12:07 am  Comments (1)  
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Camp Cooking: Breakfast Cooking Tips

Outdoor cooking can be a challenge! Here are a few tips.

These tips are tried-and-true … hope they help you!

Pancakes

  • Making pancakes?  Rub the griddle with cut potatoes instead of grease.  There will be no odor after cooking.
  • Turn the pancakes when the bubbles (in the batter) start to break or pop.
  • Using an aluminum griddle for your hotcakes?  Don’t use grease on your griddle, add melted shortening or oil to the batter.  Use fine steel wool to polish your griddle.
  • Serve pancakes and eggs immediately, do not stack and hold them on the griddle.
  • Cook bacon in a baking pan in the oven.

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 Today’s Recipe

This recipe is for breakfast, lunch or a trail snack.  They are nutritious and very tasty.  Bake some to take on your next outing.

Hunter’s Take-Along Biscuits

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.

2/3 cup water

2 and 1/4 cups complete pancake or baking mix (Bisquick-type)

1 cup rolled oats, uncooked

1/4 cup margarine or butter

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped nuts:  walnuts or pecans

1/2 cup raisins

Mix all dry ingredients together (pancake mix, oats, sugar, cinnamon, nuts, raisins) completely.

Add liquid ingredients together (water, butter or margarine) and add to dry mixture.

Continue mixing until everything is well-moistened.

Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls on greased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until light golden brown.

Makes about 12 delicious biscuits. 

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‘Evening Call’ is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 6, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off on Camp Cooking: Breakfast Cooking Tips  
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Moose: Giants of the North

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Despite their looks, Moose are usually rather timid. The 2 exceptions are: a rutting bull and a mother Moose with her calf.

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Moose are the Largest Members of the Cervid Family

Other Cervids include:  axis deer, the North American elk, whitetail deer, caribou, reindeer and mule deer.

A typical example of a Canadian moose is over 7 feet at the shoulders, weighs around 1400 lbs.,  is 10 feet from nose to tail and has about a 40 inch long leg!   However, the Alaskan moose is larger!

Where the Moose Are

Almost 1 million moose range over a huge territory:

  • most of Alaska
  • most of Canada outside of the Arctic
  • upstate New York and much of northern New England
  • Northeastern Minnesota
  • Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
  • upper Rocky Mountains
  • mountain regions of Utah and Colorado
  • as far west as the Blue Mountains of Oregon

Dining Habits of the Moose

As ruminants, moose chew their cud, like domestic cows.  They eat leaves and twig ends of many trees, fibrous forbs (like: bunchberry), plus seeds of grasses and sedge, ferns and fungi.

During warm weather, they eat about 50 lbs. of matter each day; in winter, they  average about 35 lbs. each day.

Moose During Rutting Season

During the mating season, the bull moose is at his most ornery and difficult to anticipate.

If you are following bulls too closely, you may need to climb a tree to get out of his way!  It’s best to give bulls plenty of room.

You will know you are in trouble if the bull moose lowers his head, showing off his full rack of antlers.  Then it is likely that he will swing his antlers to-and-fro, so you get the message — that he’s not kidding.

If he’s really aggravated, he may pitch his head up into a bugling posture (similar to his cousin, the elk).  When he wants to “up the ante” in his challenge of another bull (or people), he grunts.

Are Moose Really Dangerous?

It’s surprising how few interactions  between people and moose there are, considering their numbers.  Other than traffic accidents, there have been only a few incidents between humans and moose.

In 2 separate incidents, moose have stomped 2 people to death!  Oddly enough, these occurred in suburban regions of Alaska — not in the wilds of our largest state!

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Showdown‘ Moose Graphic is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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More Moose Moments:  coming soon!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 5, 2011 at 12:05 am  Comments (1)  
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Sunday Special: Fun in the Sun with Inflatables!

Sorry for the absence … June was a very difficult month!

Fortunately, my brother is getting the care he needs and I was able to return home.

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Our Local Weather 

Where I live (near Houston, TX), we’ve had more than 145 days without rain!  Everything is parched and dying.

Fortunately, we’ve gotten a bit of rain recently and expect more.  Hope your weather has been a little more balanced than ours!

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Inflatables and Towables 

‘Tis the season for getting out and enjoying the sunshine and outdoors!  We offer some of the latest designs in towables and inflatables.  Here are a few ….

Talk about unique ... Sumo & Splash Guard by SportsStuff! This is worn like a shirt - for towable action or body surfing! Connect a tow rope to the Sumo Splash Guard and you can steer the Sumo Tube back and forth, jump the wake and roll 360's!

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The Zip Ski offers action in the prone and sitting positions! Fun for 1 rider (up to 170 lbs)!

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This amazing, new product is the 12' Funstation Inflatable Trampoline by SportsStuff! It is stable on the water via a special sea-anchor system. No matter how much tumbling, the Funstation remains upright & stable!

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Not to be outdone, AirHead has (come out with) a "Water Weenie" for 1 to 3 riders, called the Hot Dog!

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Remember:  We carry some of the most unique designs available … and they are all discounted!

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Tuesday:  After the 4th of July, I will be back with new articles.  Join me after a great (and safe) holiday!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 3, 2011 at 6:07 pm  Comments Off on Sunday Special: Fun in the Sun with Inflatables!  
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