Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Last Friday I stared life in the eyes. I saw the many friends and family that joined us for our annual Knights of Columbus Fish Fry. By the end of the evening, I saw one pair of those eyes close for the last time.

My good friend Dennis Rosenbaum passed at the end of the Fish Fry. I was one of the first to notice Denny and contacted emergency personnel and some medical personnel in the audience before I stood aside and prayed, helped where I could and prayed some more. 

While my heart goes out to his 'momma' Rose and his three wonderful children Brandon, Allison and Jacob, I believe God wanted Dennis here with us for his last moments. 

Dennis began the Council Fish Fry fifteen years ago in a makeshift tent with four tiny cookers and in weather in which all four people cooking got pneumonia. Over the years, Dennis helped us modernize and grow, sometimes with him present and in other years thinking about him and where he might be...Kenosha at work, with Rose or with the hundreds of family and friends he knew. In other words, Dennis was the Fish Fry.

Dennis taught us all about charity giving countless hours to seeing the Fish Fry and the not so successful Chilirama got off the ground. In even the most stressful of moments, Dennis never flinched. He would often look at you with his beady eyes, give you a reassuring wink telling you that 'its all under control brother.'

He taught us fraternity. When he was here it was easy to see that he was admired by every member who knew him. As a charter member of our Council Dennis, like many of us, has seen the growth of our council family and like most, was excited what the future would hold. 

God made only one Dennis and it was his genuineness that appealed to everybody he ever came across.

I am proposing that we change the name of our Fish Fry to the Dennis Rosenbaum Memorial Fish Fry in honor of the man who got this day all started. While he was one man, it was easy to see from his aura, that one man can do great things. 

Dennis, I know that you're in a tree stand in the great forest watching over us. Please pray for us as today brother we pray for you. You will never be forgotten, but especially on the Fish Fry. May the Perpetual light shine upon you and you're soul rest in peace, Amen. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Drought Resistance

As I look at my seed purchases for 2013, I can hear a subliminal voice in the back of my head...drought.

Should I plant red clover or another legume for the 2014 soybeans?...drought, drought, drought, drought

Do I follow up with a green manure crop?...drought, drought, drought, drought

What will provide more calories or protein, canarygrass, sorghum sudangrass, grazing corn, drought, drought, drought, drought.

While I fear what might become, I'm certainly not mortified. Our permaculture approach for the past five years has built soil tilth which in turn means that our soils hold more water, nutrients and in essence when we start the season out behind in moisture, we will not be as far behind as neighbors. 

So do I think about the forecasts. Yes. With that said, I plan to purchase the variety of forages that will benefit our soils both this year and in the future.