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Gobble. Gobble.

We’re so thankful today. For life, love, and you.

And, take a few minutes to watch this video. Every moment, every breath, is a miracle. Be grateful.

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2011 in Celebrations, Family, video

 

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Christmas Hugs from Princess

Last week the whole Cleveland tribe surprised Grandpa Denny with a Thanksgiving trip to Branson, Missouri for his 60th birthday. We rented a house in the Ozarks, met the newest nephew (Cale), cooked lots of turkey, survived all-night shopping insanity, and hit a neat theme park in the wooded mountains called Silver Dollar City. An awesome adventure, even though we had kiddos in the van who thought it had been a long trip already by the time we drove past the Tea, SD exit on the way down (9 to 11 hours one way, depending on car sickness level).

At the famed Christmas Light Parade (held twice each night during the holiday season), Zoey made it big. The friendly Cinderella knock-off from the parade was really the main reason she showed up. When the parade princess reached down and gave Zoey a hug, it was like winning the Powerball.

Later, fully against Mommy’s wishes, Hope and I strapped into the Powder Keg–a screaming roller coaster through the woods in the dark. Scariest and most fun ride I’ve ever been on. Hope went for a second ride (this time with Aunt Jenna).

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2010 in Celebrations, Family, Kids, Vacation

 

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Chunks of Meat (it’s a South Dakota thing)

Raise your hand if you’ve never heard of chislic. I grew up eating the stuff quite often (it was usually deer at our house, but James Baxa always cooked up some fab lamb at Sport Days). From chislic feeds to booths at the fair to bar menus in every town, it’s a staple of southeastern South Dakota that I just figured everyone knew about. Until a little research a few years ago.

Turns out, it’s pretty much foreign everywhere outside of the Mount Rushmore state. We’re talking totally unheard of–even just across the border. Until now.

Seems the cosmos has suddenly decided chislic is worth it. You might expect it to be featured on the Rock Garden Tour’s three days of peace and love at the Turner County Fair, but it’s sweeping the nation–on WikipediaFacebook and in the big city news. That’s right, cubed fried meat is the new pizza.

And so, to celebrate (and to prevent Eric from having to actually clean and freeze his hunt from the road trip home) a few dozen Bartmann cousins got together the night before Thanksgiving to imbibe in greasy meat, malt beverages and internet surfing. I’d have let you know sooner, but these pics were on my little sis’s camera, and she’s been busy playing Dukes of Hazard.

Pheasant chislic, of the breaded variety, was the menu. This was a first for me. I’ve eaten a mighty lot of ringneck in my day, but never in the form of South Dakota’s favorite dish.

Chef Jeremy did the slicing and dicing, and the frying (outside, on a very cold night). Greg kept the cats away from the the deep fat fryer. As you can see, beer is absolutely necessary as a side with any chislic.

By the way, according to the official know-it-all at the Freeman Courrier (the very finest small town newspaper in all the land), chislic has German roots, like me. It’s traditionally made of lamb, but any meat, cubed and deep fried or grilled, can safely be called chislic.

Jeremy, we loved eating your meat. Especially Justin.

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2009 in Family, Food, South Dakota

 

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Exhausted

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Raise your hand if this little holiday break totally kicked your ass. Me too. We’re one pooped family. Planning to do a whole lot of nothing on Sunday…

 
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Posted by on November 30, 2008 in Celebrations, Family

 

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