Archive for the ‘Happenings at QWL’ Category

Fox and Sax Indians

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

Dubuque was first inhabited by mound builders. They built elongated, conical mounds that can be seen at Eagle Point, Pike’s Peak and along highway 52 near John Deere Drive. No one knows fort sure the importance of these mounds. Lucius Langworthy mentioned them in several lectures at the Dubuque Literary and Scientific Institute. He believes they were some type of fortification. However, in later years there is strong evidence that they are mausoleums of the distinguished dead of the race. In 1881, the Smithsonian directed an exploration of the mounds. The most interesting excavation was in East Dubuque. One mound just off Gramercy Street contained a burial vault of 6 adults, 4 children and a baby seated in a dinning circle.

The Mesquakie Indians were known as the Red Earth people. The Sauk, a nearby kin, were called the yellow earth people and their chief was Makataimeshekiakiak known to us as Black Hawk. Both the Mesquakie and Sauk were driven out of their native lands in Montreal by the Iroquois and they landed in  eastern Wisconsin on the Wolf River and then further south on the Fox River. As they continued to be pushed further west by rival tribes,  by 1760 they were in Dubuque. Here they were known as the Fox Indians. They were a small nation of about 50,000. Their language was similar to the Sauk Indians who also occupied the area.

Julien Dubuque came out west with his brother in the early 1780′s. We do not know how Julien became interested in the lead mines. He had come to Praire du Chien to trade with the Indians and maybe the Mesquakie approached him about working the mines. But on September 22, 1788 the Mesquakie gathered with Julien Dubuque and drew up an agreement allowing Julien to work the mines.

As for the Fox and Sax Indians, they were pushed out of their lands to Kansas. But in recent years, they have purchased land in Tama, Iowa and set up their reservation. This year the Mesquakie will celebrate their 100th Pow Wow at their Mesquakie Casino in Iowa. For a much more detailed history of the journey of the Mesquakie Indians to Dubuque, check out the book Dubuque on the Mississippi by William Wilkie.

Dubuque Weekend Activities 07-31 to 08-03-2014

Monday, July 28th, 2014

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More June Happenings in Dubuque!

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Come and Stay With Us and Enjoy All of These Wonderful Dubuque Activities!

Quiet Walker Lodge Bed and Breakfast.

Dubuque Activities

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Visiting Seed Saver Plant Festival in Decorah

Monday, May 19th, 2014

seed saver4

This winter was one of the worst for most of the country. Iowa was no exception. We had more cold days this last winter than we had in the past 5 years. So we were all ready for Spring to arrive.

In celebration of the end of winter, I went to the Harvest Perennial Plant Sale at Seed Savers in Decorah. It is always a treat to see all the rare plants they have at the center.

This year I was excited to buy some outhouse hollyhock that I planted against the barn. Anybody who lives in the Iowa countryside knows every barn needs some hollyhock growing against the side of the building.

I also am trying Aunt Molly Cherry. This plant peeked my interest. It grows on a fence as a vine and the sweet fruit is housed in a pod. The fruit is suppose to taste like cherry and can be used for eating, jams, and pies.

I also purchased everlasting sweet pea. I remember the fragrant sweet pea that my grandmother had growing along her back fence. In memory of her, I hope it grows abundantly.

This year I was not able to get my vegetable garden finished until last weekend.  The ground was just not thawing out enough to turn the ground. But last weekend I was able to get my peas, potatoes, tomatoes, onions and

zucchini planted. The sweet rain came after the planting and everything is growing straight and strong. Stop by this spring and relax at Quiet Walker Lodge. We would love to see you!

 

Christmas at the Lodge

Saturday, December 21st, 2013

squirrelThis little guy knows how to have fun in the snow! The lodge is covered with a pure white blanket of snow and it looks like we will be having more during Christmas. During this time we wish to thank all of you for choosing our lodge as your destination getaway spot. We hope to see you again in 2014. May you and your family have a warm and blessed holiday season.

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Wine Trail Spring Event

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

"Iowa Lodging at Quiet Walker Lodge Bed and Breakfast, a Country Inn and Dubuque area bed and breakfast located near Dubuque, Iowa" />wine festivalGet ready for the Iowa Wine Trail Spring Event. This year’s theme will be Before and After Desserts and Appetizers. Each winery on the list will have their specialty like Herbed Cheese Stuffed Papadew Peppers, Pork Cheek Quesadillas and Chocolate Cannoli at Daly Creek or Eagle Landing’s Norwegian Meatballs served with Dry Red Wine (Mr Sippi), RoTel Cheese Dip and Nachos served with Semi-Sweet Red Wine (Mrs Sippi), Spring Time Fruit Salad served with Semi-Sweet Muscat Canelli wine ( Lit’l Sippi) and Raspberry Flavored Brownies served with Chocolate Raspberry Dessert wine (Serenity). All of the wineries are offering awesome desserts and appetizers. This event is happening this weekend April 27-28th. So grab your partner and head out to Quiet Walker Lodge and then on to the wineries! It is an event you won’t want to miss!

Winter at Quiet Walker Lodge

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

During the months of December and January we have enjoyed the beauty of the winter landscape. There is something to be said about the peacefulness of a winter day snuggled up in a blanket around the fireplace. During this time, I have caught up on some of my basket weaving. I finished my autumn corn project and I am currently working on a pine needle basket with a natural base.
This year, I had the opportunity to attend a Gourd Convention and learn how to weave gourds. So now besides my basket weaving and gardening, I am learning new techniques in gourd art.
In the Fall, we planted eleven new maple trees on the property. These trees line the small trail we are developing. It is a slow process, but it is nice to see the new trees in the meadow.

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Gourd Art

Saturday, October 6th, 2012

Agate Gourd

This weekend, I went to the Midwest Basket and Gourd Convention at Sinsinawa Mounds in Wisconsin. I am now hooked on gourd art! It was difficult to pick the class I enjoyed most, but if I had to pick, I think the Agate Gourd would be my number one choice. This is the one I made.
I learned how to use alcohol ink to produce a marbling effect on the gourd. The grass is a pygmy palm grass from Tucson, Arizona. The beads are Ox bone beads. It took me about three hours from start to finish. I think the fun part was working with the alcohol ink. I plan to make more gourds using this ink and see what kind of designs and marbling effects I can produce.
The second piece I created this weekend was a gourd with natural embellishments. I used a devil’s claw for my centerpiece. I plan to grow this annual to get more devil claws for more projects. The claw can even be used for earrings! The devil claw is also from Arizona and the seeds are inside the top part. On this gourd, I sewed a beautiful red bean that is toxic to animals. So I need to keep this basket high up to stop the cats from eating it and getting high! For this gourd, I used a beautiful red palm grass. I liked the texture and the little nubbles on the grass. Next time I am going to also marble the gourd (possibly in greens).
The next project was learning how to faux a gourd. The gourd was spray-painted black. The first step was to take a glue/sand mixture and put it on the gourd to produce a rough texture. After that was dry, the paint went on and then the seal. I did not like the way this one turned out and plan to experiment more with this technique.
In April, the Wisconsin Gourd Festival will be held in Madison. I hope to make Spirit dolls out of gourds and learn how to burn designs in them. I think I can really get into gourd art and incorporate some of my basket weaving skills for the rims. This is cool!

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Morrison Brothers Tree Farm

Saturday, September 22nd, 2012

Today I went to the tree farm with Jeff Stecklin of Stecklins Tree Service to choose the trees I want to plant along our trail. I chose some beautiful maples that provide color in the Fall. The Autumn Blaze Maple is known for its brillant red-orange fall color. It grows pretty fast and was the 1997 Iowa Tree of the Year. The Deborah Norway Maple is another fast growing maple. It has more upright branches but provides a brillant red leave in spring that turns to a dark bronze-green in the summer. I like the Emerald Luster Norway for its round canopy and pretty color. The Red Sunset Maple is a dense rounded form tree that has orange-red foilage in the Fall.
In the meadow I am planting a Bloodgood London Planttree that has a beautiful cream, olive and brown exfoliating bark. This will be a focal point tree with a picnic table and benches under it for guests to sit and have picnics. The lkast trees oin my list to plant this Fall arte the Northern Red Oak trees. This is the fastest growing Oak around and it won the 1999 Iowa Tree of the Year. What I like about this tree is that the leaves hang on the tree into winter.
So in the next several weeks the trees will be planted along the trail. Each will have their own water holding bag and hopefully next year they will look beautiful!

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Heritage Farms

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Today I traveled to Decorah, Iowa to check out the Heritage Farm seed saving exchange. This place has one of the largest collections of open-pollinated heirloom varieties for home gardeners like myself. It is an 890 acre farm with beautiful gardens and orchards.There are several different gardens to stroll through. The preservation gardens is where seeds are regenerated and grown to provide a refeshed seed supply. These gardens are designed to prevent cross-pollination and mantain genetic purity. The trial gardens are used to plant a sample of the seeds they receive from a grower to determine germination rate and genetic purity. These gardens serve as a system of checks and balances. Several other gardens like Diane’s Garden and the Seed Saving Garden are also open for public strolls. My favorite garden is the exchange garden. Each year, hundreds of SSE members share their seeds with others by listing them in the yearbook.
Besides the gardens, the farm also has a historic apple orchard and heritage breeds of livestock. The historic apple orchard features 550 different varieties of apples. The farm is one of two major breeding sites for Ancient White Park Cattle in the US. This breed is known for its well-marbles meat, efficient grazing and easy calving. Also, Gloucestershire Old Spots Pigs are used in the orchards to clean up windfalls and this reduces pests.
Of course one can not visit the farm without picking up some seeds. I am excited about the Heritage Farm Poppy and I look forward to having this beautiful poppy growing in my garden. I also picked up a package of historic pansies mix. Unfortunately the original pansies introduced in the 1800s by the Vilmorin Company of Paris no longer exist, but seedman Kees Sahin of the Netherlands kept a collection of 13000 violas in the Netherlands. This mix was assembled by him and closely resembles the original “Bambini Mixture” from Vilmorin. I also picked up a sweet pea perinnial called Everlasting which I plan to have growing on the fence in my songbird garden. For vegetables I picked up the Chioggia beet seeds. This is a pre-1840 Italian heirloom beet introduced in the US before 1865. It has alternating red and white concentric rings that resemble little bull’s-eyes.
Tonight I will be planting herbs and peppers of every variety you can think of as they were giving away their leftover plants. What a great day at the farm!

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