Category Archives: Notions

A Cowboy’s Faith: Day for remembering, honoring

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.It’s time to remember and honor those who’ve passed on. Memorial Day, Monday May 27, is a federal holiday in the United States.

Businesses will be closed and special events will be hosted at many cemeteries.

Yet, likely majority of the population will not visit gravesites. Even sadder they will not even give perhaps a single thought to family and friends gone to eternity.

Oh yes, it’ll be a day at the ballgame, on the lake, long awaited road venture, whatever weather logistics permit. A day without work to catch up on rest is always appreciated.

That’s not what it’s all about. Memorial Day, known as Decoration Day by forefathers recently as the 1960s, is for remembering and honoring those who’ve died.

It was originally for recognizing those who died serving in the United States Armed Forces. Now, the day is set aside to honor all those who’ve gone to the great beyond.

During cemetery visits, memories are reflected and typically flowers placed at gravesites. The practice of decorating soldiers’ graves with flowers is an ancient custom.

Soldiers’ graves were decorated in the United States before and during the Civil War. Volunteers also often place an American flag on graves of those who’ve served in the military.

It is now older generation who visit cemeteries and take part in Memorial Day programs. Millennials, those born between 1977 and 1994, sometimes follow family tradition paying respect to deceased family and friends.

“Your grandchildren will not visit cemeteries,” a good friend insisted when relating annual cemetery stops on parents’ birthdays. The thought hadn’t occurred but it’s likely a fact.

Don’t those young people have any respect for their relatives? They wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for earlier generations.

Yet, what seem important customs are definitely going wayside. Traditional funerals and burials have become less common. More than half of deaths result in cremation with that number increasing annually.

Urns of deceased are sometimes buried, but as frequent put on a display shelf or cremains spread over nature.

Too often there is no memorial or any honor of the deceased gone and forgotten forever. Even with spiritual beliefs assured, that somehow seems an eternal gloom.

Fortunately reminded of John 11:25: “Jesus is the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Him may die, yet shall live.”

Hidden History: Osage County monuments ‘perpetuate the memories of fallen heroes’

Burlingame Cemetery soldier’s monument, date unknown, but photo possibly taken the day of the monument’s dedication. Photo thanks to Burlingame Schuyler Museum.

The Civil War was the bloodiest war in United States history, claiming the lives of about 620,000 individuals. After the war, veterans organizations were created to help those who survived the war to band together and honor those who were lost and the battles they fought. Largest among these groups was the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.), established in 1866 for those who had fought for the Union army. General John A. Logan of the G.A.R. first proposed a decoration or memorial day in 1868 as a day of remembrance. This day was not one of any particular battle, and one in which the flowers would be in bloom to decorate graves. Observance of this day was determined by individual states, but by 1890 each of the northern states had made Decoration Day a state holiday.

Another group that arose during this time was the Woman’s Relief Corps (W.R.C.). This womens’ group had evolved out of the Christian and Sanitary Commission, whose mission had been to care for wounded soldiers. The W.R.C. was created to aid Union veterans, in particular the dependent ones. This group eventually became the auxiliary of the G.A.R. and was established in Kansas in 1885. Along with aid for veterans, this group aimed to “invoke a spirit of patriotism, respect for the nation’s flag, a love of country and reverence for her defenders in the minds of the youth of the present day, [and erect] monuments to perpetuate the memories of fallen heroes.”

Around the turn of the century the W.R.C. began seeking to memorialize those who served in the Civil War, because those that had remained were quickly disappearing as a present reminder of their service.

In Osage County, Kan., the first major monument to be erected was the soldier memorial at Burlingame, in 1905. The women of Burlingame’s W.R.C., consisting of 70 members under the leadership of president Lucy Jennings, commissioned Nettleton Marble & Granite Works, of Ottawa, Kan., to do the work.

L.H. Nettleton had been creating marble masterpieces for the area for 21 years. In 1904, he bought out his former partner, M. K. Ferguson, and became the sole proprietor of the business. Nettleton’s company had previously created war memorials for Baldwin City, in 1896, Garnett, in 1899, and Peabody, Kan., in 1900, but Burlingame’s monument was to be his greatest achievement yet, working in a grander style than before.

In order to secure the contract and gain the chance to showcase his abilities, Nettleton cut the W.R.C. a significant discount of the original $1,250 cost. The granite monument stands 15 feet, 8 inches tall, with a soldier standing atop keeping watch over the cemetery’s sleeping heroes. The monument was dedicated on Memorial Day in 1905, with exercises starting at Sumner Park including orators and band performances, and a visit by Governor E. W. Hoch.The veterans joined the procession to the cemetery for the dedication, following the local Kansas National Guard company, and only had “to look ahead to be reminded of what they were when they went first to battle for their country in their hour of need.”

A Cowboy’s Faith: Foggy days deserve respect

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Visibility zero.” “Visibility one-eighth mile.” “Visibility one-quarter mile.”

Any of those forecasts are time for alert. Actually best just stay home until the report changes. A quarter-of-a-mile allows some vision, but one-eighth is treacherous.

Zero visibility means there’s no way to see. Like the dark of night with cloud cover, no moon, no stars. A person can’t see anything period. It’s essential to stay off the highway for personal safety and well-being of any dumb one driving in the fog.

Needing to fill up with gas before heading to work, turned right to town, roadway ahead could hardly be seen. Not very far. By the time came out of town heading north, there was fog, but could see enough to feel safe.

Next morning, another group of cows and calves to work before grass, crew was to be ready at 8 o’clock. Barely seeing the road, arrived in ample time, but the gate couldn’t be seen let alone any cows with calves.

Starting time delayed an hour, and it was still foggy, as cowboys horseback headed east to gather the pairs. Somehow everyone was accounted for when the makeshift panel corral gate closed.

Wasn’t long before sun was shining bright, no inkling that one could barely see minutes earlier.

Whenever the fog is that bad, can’t help but remember many years ago driving to Concordia for a farm show. It was foggy for sure, but driving slow carefully, wasn’t worried about hazards.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Powers of floodwaters devastating

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“It’s better to have too much rain than the opposite.”

That’s the comment heard reflecting dry conditions of a year ago compared to now.

Obviously local opinion is legitimately countered with disagreement from those suffering irreplaceable, financially devastating flood damages.

Deepest heartfelt condolences are expressed to those experiencing terribly dramatic forever life altering acts of nature.

Vastness of loss remains incomprehensible to outsiders despite vivid news coverage of extensive flooding horridness.

Worst loss is human lives taken by uncontrollable, no escaping raging high waters.

Everybody in the nearby flooding region has been lifetime diversely harmed. Farms of generations destroyed, never to be replaced. Richest soils of the world were stolen by rampant overflowing.

Entire livestock operations morbidly were taken with no reprieve despite distinct natural instinct and owner-operator management assisting tactics.

Even with government programs and broadest generous financial assistance, life as was never again, no matter how evaluated.

Money cannot buy what has been lost. No way to start over, begin again. Life goes on in an entirely different direction, never expected or imagined in the scariest dream.

No actual semblance, yet cowboys are experiencing dilemmas with local flooding now, too.

Hidden History: Proud chief forever claims home in final resting place

The year 1869 marked the removal of the Sauk (Sac) and Fox tribes from Osage County to Oklahoma, all resigned to their fate except those under the leadership of a man named Mokohoko. This chief among the tribes had come to love this land that he had been forced into and adopted as his own. His fight to preserve his people’s rights to their land became one of the last stands of the American Indian in Kansas against Euro-American expansion.

Mokohoko, whose name means “He who floats visible near the surface of the water”, was the principal chief of the Sauk tribe. He belonged to the Sturgeon Clan, a clan designated for leaders of the Sauk. Mokohoko was a key supporter in the Black Hawk War, a brief conflict in 1832 that took place when the Sauk leader Black Hawk tried to reclaim tribal lands in Illinois that had been ceded in a previous treaty. Mokohoko was stubbornly traditional, holding tight to the culture of his people. This often put him at odds with another Sauk and Fox leader, Keokuk, who tended to be more lenient towards the white man’s ways.

In the winter of 1845-46, the Sauk and Fox tribes were removed to a reservation in Franklin and Osage counties consisting of 435,200 acres located at the upper reaches of the Osage River. The first Sauk and Fox agency was in Franklin County, and later, in 1859, moved near Quenemo.

Mokohoko and his band settled on the banks of the Marais des Cygnes River, stretching for 10 miles upstream and downstream of the area that would become the town of Melvern. This land contained 500 acres of rich farm ground used by the Sauk and Fox for farming. This prime ground produced so much corn that the tribe was able to sell the surplus to the government and early settlers of the area.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Good sides of weeds

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Favorite flowers on the ranch are dandelions.”

At least that must be the case as the entire yard has been covered with the colorful yellow blooms.

Interesting the response for roll call at a recent meeting when members were asked their favorite flower. More than half of those attending said: “dandelions.”

Evidently, everyone’s weed control methods are identical. Nothing was done and the little pretty yellow flowers thrived.

One time years gone by, a broadleaf herbicide was spread over the lawn when green started showing. Believe it or not, hardly one dandelion lived.

Even worse than the lawn flowers are the white fuzz balls replacing pretty blooms and now intensely seeding dandelions. If it’s possible, next year’s yellow flower bloom crop will likely extend the present one.

Now just wait one minute, perhaps instead of complaining entrepreneur business enterprises should be started.

It’s been contended that dandelions can be used to make wines not generally available at most places selling alcoholic beverages. Promoters proclaim the prolific yellow lawn weed is easily crafted into a “tasty true elixir of health.”

A Cowboy’s Faith: Barn hole actually blessing

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Marvelous Magnificent Maggie kicked a dinner plate size hole in the steel siding of the indoor riding arena this morning.”

That note on the ranch house kitchen supper table greeted a cowboy returning from a long day at the office.

Wasn’t any use getting upset eight hours after the buckskin mare had been “making laps, bucking, running and kicking.”

Still, laughing about the rambunctiousness and damages sure wouldn’t have been the right take on the hole-in-the-barn either.

Most importantly: “Was Maggie hurt?” Apparently not, at least there weren’t any obvious cuts or lameness.

“So what caused her to get so excited? Was she scared of something?”

Perhaps, a piece of paper blew across the arena? Maybe a mouse scampered under her feet? Strong winds might have rattled the tin or the big sliding door?

A sparrow or mourning dove may have flown in close over her head or came in suddenly from her backside? Possibly one of three barn cats out hunting ran by her unexpectedly?

No logical explanation could be given.

Eat Well to be Well: Build brainpower with brain-healthy foods

“To keep the body in good health is a duty, otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” This very wise and aptly spoken quote from Buddha makes perfect sense in the world today when a greater percentage of our population is developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

We always hear talk about heart health but what about brain health? Our brain needs our attention too. It needs to be nourished and fed the right kind of foods to keep us thinking clearly, focused, feeling energetic and functioning at our best.

As dementia and Alzheimer’s disease continue to rise in the United States with no cure in sight, the earlier we begin making healthy food choices, the better. Currently, Alzheimer’s disease is the 6th leading cause of death with 5.3 million Americans living with this condition. It is predicted that unless a cure is found, 16 million Americans will have the disease by 2050.

The brain needs adequate blood flow to enhance memory and cognitive thinking. Many studies have been conducted demonstrating how a healthy diet with proper food choices does indeed make a remarkable difference in how we think and feel, giving us a brain boost we can benefit from. By adding in foods to boost brain health, this is one way we can participate in keeping our brains healthy. Here are five foods for protecting, promoting and preserving brain health:

A Cowboy’s Faith: Exceeding speed always hazardous

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Driving too fast is dangerous to all concerned.”

Preface conversation with legitimacy of thoughts having received too many “traffic citations.” Friend mentor decades ago, Warren Gilman, Chamber of Commerce leader, got “tickets” on occasion. Each one just shrugged off: “They’re manmade laws and can change upon a wisp.”

Certainly, that’s true with frequency that speed limits have gone up and down. Likewise, varying stringency, leniency, inconsistency of enforcement, such enforcers often exceed posted signs.

Still, no question, wrecks increase with heavy footed automotive driving.

Interesting though speeding on roadways was considered dangerous resulting in fines long before cars were invented.

If President Grant were alive today, he’d probably have quite a few points on his license by now.

While Grant was president in 1866, accidents forced Washington, D.C., authorities to crack down on speeders. For policeman William West, the last straw was when a woman and six-year-old child were seriously injured on West’s corner by a “driver of fast horses.”

The next day, West caught Grant’s buggy going at “a furious pace.” America’s top elected official was immediately pulled over.

“Mister President,” said West, “I want to tell you that you were violating the law by driving at reckless speed. It is endangering the lives of the people who have to cross the street.”

A Cowboy’s Faith: Blaze best for grass

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“That’ll stop the smoke.”

Longtime farmer friend accessed another pour down walking out of church.

For several days, Flint Hills had been ablaze with smoke apparent in the sky every direction.

It was a haze drawing critical attention from a handful or so of large urban centers.

They were offended at the contamination and fright of hazardous damage to the environment.

Such a controversial issue has been pasture burning since beginning as necessary range management tool.

Fact is prairies were free of most intruders until ranchers started productive grazing programs.

Nature took care of itself, it’s said; lightning started fires, pastures burned, lush grass grew. Buffalo, deer, antelope, prairie chicken and creatures of the wild thrived on native rangeland.

Farmers and ranchers started planting trees of various sorts for windbreaks, home shade and landscaping.

Worthwhile endeavor until wildlife and wind were seeding trees all over the lands.

Then environmentalists encouraged various additional herbaceous plantings in attempting to slow land erosion.

“Helpful” plants soon were nature spread beyond eroding draws, washouts and steep acreage into land never intended.

Eat Well to Be Well: Hormones in beef – Should you worry?

When it comes to food, everyone has an opinion and each of us has many questions. Take beef for instance. It seems you either eat it or you don’t. And if you choose not to, one concern for avoiding it could be the fear of hormones in beef.  How do we know beef is safe to eat and why are hormones used anyway?

The ‘beef’ over eating meat

The sensationalism surrounding beef being filled with hormones is just that – an over exaggeration.  It’s important to understand all living things – plants, animals, and people – produce hormones. Hormones are special chemical messengers necessary for controlling most major body functions from hunger to reproduction. The hormones used in beef production are only those that are also naturally produced by cattle. They include estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, as well as synthetic versions of them.

Why are hormones used?

The simple answer why cattle are implanted with hormones is to help the cattle grow faster. These growth-promoting hormone pellets, about the size of an Advil tablet, contain a small amount of hormones and are put under the skin on the backside of the ear – cattle ears are never used in food production, thus they do not end up in the food we eat.

If you’re worried about the amount of hormones in these pellets, don’t be. The amount is a fraction of the natural production of mature bulls or heifers. A 1,300 pound steer is implanted with 30 milligrams of estrogen to last 150 days and that’s it. Compare this to the amount of ingested hormones a woman on birth control pills takes for months or years. Also, hormones don’t build-up in the cow’s system so there is no residue from the pellets in your meat.

These hormones not only help the animal gain weight faster, but they also have less of an impact on the environment than a non-treated animal. This means less time, food, and water are used to finish the animal, making them less expensive to produce, a cost-savings passed on to us as consumers. Research from Iowa State University found that hormone implants have no effect on beef quality or safety.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Old ways still best

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Just a newspaper.”

That simple phrase brought ire from a dedicated reader when writing about checking the mailbox and finding “just a newspaper.”

“Oh Frank. How could you write it?” she questioned.

“Having spent my entire adult life in the company of print journalists, my heart sinks at the words: Just a newspaper,” the lady continued.

At first alarmed, the sting quickly left realizing that “off the cuff” comment could be taken offensively. Even more so emphatic for “a print journalist myself from time to time.”

Clarifying her point, she added, “I’ve seen your stories in other newspapers, so I know you have respect for an audience of readers.”

Guilty as charged, immediate apology was in order seeking reprieve for wrongdoing.

“Ooooops. You are right. As a lifetime dedicated writer, newspapers are always important mail. Subscribing to nearly two dozen daily, weekly and monthly print publications; it’s only disappointing when one doesn’t arrive.”

Briefly relating newspaper career spanning high school, college and 46 years professionally, apology insisted. “I’m sorry for my bad stepping across the line. In modern times, seldom does anybody edit stories. Had a smart knowledgeable person like you critiqued the piece, suggestion could have been made to change that offensive terminology. Unquestionably, there is room for improvement of most writings.”

Fortunately, the concerned reader, a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, accepted the cowboy’s penitence.

“Thank you so much for your response to my rant. My late husband had a lifelong career with The Kansas City Star and Times. Big urban newspapers have shrunk drastically in recent years, but smaller papers continue providing news that is the lifeblood of small communities.”

Hidden History: Auto polo drives into Osage City as latest commercialized craze

The action of auto polo was guaranteed  to “make spectators’ hearts pump at 60 miles per hour.” Photo thanks to Library of Congress.

By Wendi Bevitt

Have you ever guided an open-framed automobile at the rate of 40 miles an hour through a jungle of pine trees while a wild-eyed passenger riding shotgun accurately lops off the branches of the passing trees with a scythe? If so, then you can appreciate what it was like to be a driver in the most exciting and dangerous spectator sport in the early 20th century – auto polo.

Auto polo arose as the “must see” event after it was first played in Kansas in an event sponsored by Jones Auto Exchange, of Wichita, Kansas, in July 1912. Jones employees Carl Evans and Roltz King had created a new form of auto polo, building on a concept originating in Massachusetts in 1902.

The earlier version utilized a one-seat steam powered car called a “runabout”, with play taking place in an area roughly the size of a football field where participants hit a ball approximately as big as a basketball. This new version was played using Model T cars stripped down to the frame to allow for higher speed and better maneuverability. Each car consisted of a team of driver and mallet man. The mallet man often balanced himself on the edge of the vehicle to take a swing at the ball while the driver maneuvered the vehicle.  Jones Auto Exchange’s business manager, Ralph Hankinson, was the man who would successfully promote this exciting spectator sport in its new form.

Ralph “Pappy” Hankinson was the first child of Euro-American ancestry to be born in Russell, Kansas, in 1879. After his schooling, Ralph traveled and worked at various jobs, and then jumped in on the ground floor of auto sales in 1907. It was during this time that Ford Motor Company was preparing to release the first mass-produced automobile, the Model T, at the end of 1908. Ralph found employment at Jones Auto Exchange, a company that became one of the top sellers of Ford vehicles in the early days. Jones did so well selling Ford vehicles that they built a large warehouse, the largest structure of its kind in the Midwest at the time, from which to sell automobiles and refinish and repair all facets of the automobile.

Ford Motor Company produced more cars than all other manufacturers combined, and part of the reason they were so successful was the durability of their cars. Jones Auto Exchange and the company’s promotion of auto polo was a unique way to demonstrate the durability of the Model T. Auto polo was, however, a highly expensive sport, often requiring cars to be entirely rebuilt after a match (which could be taken care of at Jones’ premier shop). Often salesmen with the auto exchange participated as drivers for the auto polo cars. Players would participate in a year-round training before playing so the game would live up to the anticipated hype of “60 seconds of action in every minute of play.”

On the local front, Theodore Bloom and Fred Anderson were selling Model Ts at their Osage City Garage, at least by 1912, starting at a price of $620. Plans were made for Ralph Hankinson to bring his captivating sport to Osage City in May of 1915. A crowd of five to six thousand was expected for the “rain or shine” display. Local businesses such as Howard Mercantile held special sales in anticipation of the event, enticing shoppers with ads stating “You auto come!” and children mimicked the sport in the street in homemade “polo wagons.”

Help House flings open doors on prom closet

By Raylene Quaney

Help House’s Prom Closet is open and has over 100 beautiful gowns in nearly any style, color and size. Prom Closet is open 4-7 p.m. Monday evenings, and 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, from now until all proms in Osage County are over. These dresses are available to any young lady that is a resident of Osage County. Come in and find your perfect dress for that special night.  There is no charge for any of the dresses.

Budgeting class

The next “Good Sense” budget class will be held 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday, April 15, at Help House. Once completed, the participant is eligible for assistance with heating and or cooling cost on utilities, gas, electric or wood. This is a one-day class. Call 785-828-4888 for more information and to register.

Volunteer training

Help House’s annual volunteer training has been rescheduled for April 29. Registration begins at 9 a.m. All volunteers are asked to participate in this training at least once. If you have thought about becoming a volunteer and would like to know more about Help House, you are welcome to attend. Please call the office to register.

Mobile food pantries

Mobile food pantry dates for April:

  • Carbondale Church of Christian Fellowship, 12 p.m., 2nd Tuesday, April 9
  • Osage City Community Center, 10-11 a.m., 3rd Thursday, April 18
  • Burlingame Federated Church 10 a.m., 3rd Thursday, April 18
  • Lyndon Jones Park on East Sixth Street, 12 p.m. 3rd Friday, April 19
  • Melvern pantry has been cancelled until further notice.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Reaping what is sown

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.Reflections of this heroine keep returning in the memory.

Farm girl, cowboy’s wife, encouraging mother, never ceasing community thinker, lifetime friend Donna Muller passed away several weeks ago.

First are ruminations of Donna wearing a summer dress appropriate for the ’50s in her lawn chair collecting rosettes.

Husband cowboy Kenny was showing home raised Quarter Horses, winning purple prizes pitched to Donna ringside at the county fair. It made a lifetime impression on a wannabe cowboy who didn’t even own a horse.

The family acquaintance went back decades earlier when Mom was Donna’s country school teacher. A prized scrapbook possession is the photograph Donna had of her and Mom on the first day of school.

She actually followed footsteps teaching country school for a while. Both sides of Donna’s family were lifetime Four Mile community farmers; always Buchman’s Grocery customers.

Fair time was a highlight for Donna since her 4-H club days. A Four Mile 4-H Club leader, helping members, Donna guided her own children Suzanne and Richard to statewide titles.

Donna’s cinnamon rolls and county commissioners’ cookie jar entries were always fair champions.

Her certain knack for helping develop project talks and demonstrations earned many youth blue ribbons. Donna was often called to judge such competitions, including FFA speech contests, many years.

Finch: State needs health care reform, but beware of hidden costs

By State Rep. Blaine Finch, Speaker Pro Tem

Greetings from the Statehouse on this first day of spring. Hopefully the snow is behind us for now and we can move on to enjoying some time outside. The legislature is working through its “to-do list” as it nears the end of the regular session. Each year, the legislature takes a short break between regular session and veto session to allow time for the Governor to review and consider bills that have passed both chambers. But, there is still a lot of work to do between now and the break.

The one job the legislature is constitutionally required to do each year is to pass a budget for the state. For many years that job has been delayed until after the new revenue forecasts were announced during the April break. This year our budget committees are working hard to get that budget out of committee and approved before the break. This allows for a more thorough review by all legislators, more public input, and ultimately a shorter veto session when we come back to the Capitol.

Most of this week was taken up with committees working to get Senate bills reviewed, heard and worked ahead of the Friday deadline for committees to meet. Next week will see longer days on the floor of the House debating those bills. Then conference committees will meet to work out differences in the House and Senate versions.

We saw the passage of several health care bills this week, including one that would allow pharmacists to help patients administer certain injectable medications that might be difficult for a patient to do at home. We also passed legislation that prohibits life insurance companies from discriminating against living organ donors, such as those who give the gift of life by donating a kidney.

We also took up House Bill 2066, which would have allowed advanced practice registered nurses to practice without physician oversight. That bill was gutted on the House floor and replaced with Medicaid expansion. The House passed expansion today by a vote of 69-54. This is a conversation that has been going on for several years now. I have had concerns about the uncertain price tag of this policy, the transition of 55,000 Kansans from private insurance to government healthcare, the fact that the bulk of the dollars will not go to rural hospitals that are struggling, and the possibility that expansion could end if the federal government changes the reimbursement percentage it currently pays. Chief among my concerns is the potential crowd out of Kansans who are already covered by Medicaid – that includes seniors, the disabled, children in low-income families, low-income pregnant women and very low-income adults – some of whom are on waiting lists for services. With expansion, work-eligible adults would jump the line, becoming eligible for services before those who have been waiting. Those concerns remain unaddressed in the plan that was brought to the House floor.

Consumer Corner: Beware of scammers posing as Publishers Clearing House

By Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt

Over the last several years, one of the most prevalent scams we have seen Kansans fall victim to is the lottery or sweepstakes scam.

Whether it’s a foreign lottery, sweepstakes or a government grant, scammers aim to lure people into sending money to pay for the taxes or processing fees now in exchange for the promise of a future “prize.” We always remind consumers that the Kansas Lottery is the only legitimate, legally operating lottery in Kansas, and you should never have to pay money upfront to claim a prize.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Rains bring in spring

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Get ’em out of the mud.”

The statement has many connotations but been heard more and more as moisture continued coming down.

“It’s a tale of woes,” whoever’s relating their difficulty in caring for cattle in this “most unusual year,” comment added.

Certainly cattle in confinement even with highly coordinated drainage systems, there’s no relief from the mud.

Major cattle feeders report reduced gains from combination – sloppy pens, mud packed cattle backs, record cold, then too warm.

Problems expand for cow-calf operators with first calf heavy springer heifers behind the barn.

Even those with high maternal instinct can’t find a dry spot to birth. Drop the newborn in the wet mud, sometimes even a waterhole, because no alternative.

A certain mud reprieve comes when ground freezes overnight, but that’s less often, and the icy cold creates its own havoc.

Calving in grassland is generally satisfactory for mature mommas with more knowledge of caring for young, but not this year. Finding dry grass for birthing is difficult, more so with every additional sprinkle, let alone shower or downpour.

Hazards of water filled draws, fast running creeks, and ponds are always a haunt for newborns. Now, there’ve been more reports of finding babies in flooding streams, on ponds frozen tight, or stranded alive.

Yes, healthy eating is possible on a tight budget

“Healthy food is too expensive!” This is a common response from many folks who view “healthy foods” (such as fruits, vegetables, lean meat) as too pricey to afford, but is it really? Eating healthy may seem out of your reach (or a stretch of your paycheck) but with some advanced planning and a little know-how, it is possible.

While deals on processed foods like soda, boxed meals, chips, sugary cereal and fruit snacks may seem to be your answer on how to spend your food dollars, eating well on a budget is easier than you think. Besides, a lifetime of buying cheap, highly processed and not-so-healthy foods will likely backfire on your health. Developing a chronic health condition such as type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure is often related to poor food choices. In the long run, you will end up spending far more money on treating your chronic health condition (doctor visits, medications, hospitalizations) than you would have if you chose healthy foods more often.

The thing to know is that healthy eating is not simply purchasing high dollar foods. There are ways to enjoy a variety of high-quality, nutritious, and affordable foods that fit into your food budget, and reach your health goals.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Go ahead do it

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Can’t is over in the ditch.”

That was first grade teacher Mrs. Gibson’s response, 62 years ago; when classmates said something couldn’t be done.

“Don’t say it can’t be done; just find another way to get accomplished what’s needed.”

That was coworker Sean Carter at the recent Farm Profit Seminar when somebody said there was no more display space.

While not always completely accurate in either scenario, both statements encourage efforts for finding solutions when quitting is easier.

Looking around the ranch front, office situations, community needs, and seemingly unconquerable projects everywhere, “can’t” is a common analysis.

An excuse of one kind or another can be determined for nearly every project that requires extra effort, coordination and cooperation.

In grade school long ago, it was easy for any kid to readily contend: “I can’t do that.” Whether printing their name, erasing the chalk board or adding one and one, the teacher proved everyone could do it.

Finding places for late arriving sponsors at last week’s seminar was as simple; crowd together, share areas, use smaller tables. Can’t was sure not the solution when all originally planned sponsorship areas were filled.

Of course, getting everything accomplished that the majority first insist can’t be done isn’t always nearly that easy. Still all things considered, generally, “where there’s a will, there’s a way,” quoting a common longtime philosophy.

That’ll require a bit of give and take from everybody involved. Certain ones are not going to get exactly their method. It must be united effort for best results.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Cold night healthcare rewarded

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Could you please come help a heifer with a prolapse from birthing her calf?”
It was 2 o’clock in the morning, below freezing, winter moisture, herdsman calling the veterinarian 25 miles away.
Less than an hour, not smiling but ready for her job, the bundled-up animal health doctor arrived.
Heifer and wet but alive newborn were in protection of the barn. That is a major deal compared to the wet, cold, snowy mud dim shadowy corral.
Or, in the middle of the half section pasture miles from civilization with pickup headlights and low-battery flashlights. Through the decades there have been all of those scenarios thankfully with understanding yet inner-grudgingly cooperating veterinarians.
Such medical assistance is difficult in the best of environment softened some being inside despite tightness of confinement. Sanitation is of obvious importance with barn straw bedding considerably better than sloppy germ-ridden barnyard conditions.
Sure not knowing much about the physical aspects of it all, for the even less informed, simple explanation seems appropriate. Mr. Webster said, “Prolapse is to slip or fall out of its proper place in the body.”
What comes out must go back in, stay there, combat any infections which might arise, and heal up. The very good doctor adjusted, manipulated, pushed, medicated and got everything in place again sewed up tight.

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