Summer, Fishing, Gardening. Let’s Make This World a Better Place

I absolutely love summer! I only wish it would slow down. It’s not that I don’t like fall. It’s more that I dread winter. I remember last winter! It makes me shudder to think about.

What has everyone done this summer? We have taken the boat out several times to go fishing. I wish we could brag about the number of fish we have caught, or even “the one that got away”, but I don’t have one single fish to brag about. Unless catching a small blue gill is bragging rights! I hope we catch a keeper before summer is over! But, what I enjoy most is the time Jeff and I spend together. When we aren’t catching fish, we spend the time talking, laughing, sharing memories of the past and making more memories for the future.

We recently celebrated our 23rd anniversary. We have been together 25 years. As with any married couple, we have had our ups and downs. We have always gotten through the hard times together. We support each other, stand by each other, and always love each other.

We went away for a few days to a cabin. I have discovered with time, and with age, gifts to each other for an anniversary aren’t important. Time spent together is the greatest gift of all. We made some good memories during those few days together, enjoying peace and quiet. It is nice to get away from life sometimes and relax. Everyone needs some time away.

I have also learned that every day is a blessing. When we are both home in the evenings, after a busy day, we sit on the patio, weather permitting, and talk about whatever comes up!

We have also been very busy this summer with our enormous garden. It definitely is keeping us hopping! We share our garden veggies with others, which is why we made it larger. We have our own farmers market here at our house on Main Street. The cucumbers keep growing! Tomatoes are taking off now and as I type this, I am thinking I should be in the garden! I will tend to it shortly. I am going to cook eggplant for lunch! I love all the garden goodies. I do believe there is nothing better than homegrown vegetables. They are so tasty!

Enjoy the rest of your summer. We are planning on more fishing trips and hope we finally catch some fish so we can have a fish fry with some friends! We are also hoping for another getaway before the snow flies. If that doesn’t work out, we can always change the date to spring.

Take care. Share a smile with someone. Lend a helping hand to others. There is enough hate in the world we live in. It is up to us to make a difference. I know we can do it if we work together!

Just a few of the garden veggies we have picked this year. Photo Credit, Denise Gilliland, Editor and Chief, Kat Country Hub.


Our Family’s Easter! We Are Blessed!

Jeff and I are truly blessed. We enjoyed a beautiful Easter Sunday with our loved ones. And, Penelope and Rowen stayed with us for 2 days after Easter! Life is precious. We enjoy every minute with those near and dear to us. Memories made. Our family is our world! All photos/Denise Gilliland, Editor and Chief/Kat Country Hub.

I Love a Birthday!

Tomorrow, I turn 56.

I am still trying to wrap my head around that number.

It keeps getting larger and larger.

There are only two choices: The number grows larger or 6 feet under.

Yikes! I am not ready for 6 feet under.

Who is? Even though all of us know we won’t be here forever, who really wants to be “gone”?

Not me. Not yet. I have so much to do. I have plans.

What are my plans? Not much. Not lengthy.

I just want to hug Penelope and Rowen as much as I can. I can’t wait for the newest arrival in June.

I love being a grandma. Who doesn’t? But, I am a Nene. Penelope, or Peeps as I call her, named me Nene.

I take pride in the name she has given me. I take pride in seeing her beautiful face. She is something special.

But, she is not alone in the special category. Rowen, her brother, is a unique little guy.

He is so much like his mother, my daughter. Except he is a bit more ornery. That is fine too.

He is himself. He has his unique qualities too!

What will the next one be? Only God knows. I am anxiously awaiting.

Being a grandma/Nene is an honorable title. I never take it lightly.

I spoil, hug, kiss and love them every minute I see them. When I am not with them, I text, call and love facetime!

Getting older isn’t so bad. Not when precious little ones make life worth living.

Tomorrow, for my birthday, I get to spoil them some more. And they will spoil me too!

I am spoiled because they bring love and joy into my life.

God Bless Penelope and Rowen and the newest baby T coming soon! You will hear about the arrival when

it happens!

Have a great weekend all. And, when your birthday comes, cherish it. Another time around the sun is a blessing indeed!


My Many Hobbies

I believe life isn’t all about work. I think to be a well-rounded person, one should also have hobbies. I take time every day to enjoy my hobbies.

I love a good book. I am currently reading a book about Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. Who doesn’t know who they are? I still watch I Love Lucy reruns! I don’t normally buy books, but I did buy this one. It is titled Desilu, The Story of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. I normally read romance novels. Not the disgusting kind that are all about sex! I don’t care to read about that! There is romance in the Desilu book. The book also details their rise to the top in the acting industry, their struggles professionally and personally, and their ultimate divorce. It is a very good book, with many photos of the couple, their children and their friends and co-workers. I find it fascinating. I also like a change in my normal reading. Two of my favorite authors are Nicholas Spards and Debbie Macomber. But, I have to admit, I get a little bored and have to find something different to read. I also enjoy books on history. I have two other books I have purchased that I plan to read next that involve history. I will share more about them when I read them.

I have many other hobbies I enjoy as well. Jeff and I love getting the boat out and going fishing! I can’t wait to go again this year. Catching fish is so much fun. But, I also cherish the time Jeff and I spend together, sitting in the boat talking, enjoying the lake and nature. I do have to admit, if we don’t catch fish, it isn’t quite as fun, but a day on the lake is priceless!

I also take walks, getting some exercise and looking at the trees, flowers, and nature popping colors all over! Jeff and I have hummingbird feeders hung up outside. We enjoy watching them when they come back each year. The way they can fly backwards amazes me. They are very quick too!

My favorite hobby is crocheting. I have mentioned this before. I can’t believe all of the things I have made from yarn! The possibilities are endless. Recently, I finished two baby blankets. I will share photos of them at a later date, after the mommies-to-be receive them when their bundles of joy are born. There are times though when a big project gets boring. Crocheting a blanket takes a considerable amount of time. Sometimes I just have to put it down and crochet something smaller. Thanks to google, I can find many patterns to choose from. I crocheted two bracelets and two shower/bath poufs in no time! The picture of the bracelets doesn’t really do them justice. They are quite beautiful. The first one I made turned out quite large for my small wrists, so I may be gifting it to someone. I improvised and made a smaller one that fits me. It is called a bobble bracelet. I learned a new stitch when I made them too. The shower/bath poufs were very simple to make. The pattern called for two single crochet stitches in each stitch all the way around. For the second one that has more blue colors throughout it, I decided to try three single crochet stitches in each stitch around. I like how they both turned out! I may keep them both for myself! Next time I go shopping, I am going to purchase more yarn and make a couple more I can gift!

Whatever your hobbies are, take time to enjoy them. Life goes too fast! Enjoy each moment. Don’t just work…….take time to LIVE!

Have a great rest of your week!

The shower/bath poufs and bracelets I crocheted. All photos credit of Denise Gilliland, Editor and Chief, Kat Country Hub.

My Favorite Hobby: Crocheting

Do you have a hobby?

I have many. I enjoy reading, and try to read every day. I enjoy boating and fishing in the warmer months, which I hope arrive soon. I have taken up some chalk painting, but I am very much a novice. I have painted a couple of Mason jars to date. I have other projects on my mind to accomplish this summer. Gardening is also a hobby I enjoy. Jeff has taught me so much about gardening. From tilling the soil, to planting, fertilizing, weeding the garden and the  best reward, enjoying the fruits of your labor. We enjoy sharing our garden vegetables with others as well. I have also grown my own herbs over the last few years, which I dry and use to season our meals all winter long. There is truly nothing better than homegrown vegetables and herbs. I also recently purchased a keyboard/piano. I have wanted one for a long time. I purchased a book to help me in my passion to learn how to play it. I try to set aside time three or more times a week practicing. I played the clarinet throughout school and have always enjoyed music. The keyboard/piano is quite different from a clarinet, to say the least, but I can read music, even after all these years since high school. I may never be a great pianist, far from it, but I am trying. That is important to me. Trying, learning, never letting my mind sit idle.

My favorite hobby is crocheting. I would say crocheting is my main passion. It is amazing to me how a skein of yarn, or a very delicate thread, can come to life as a baby blanket, an afghan, a pot holder, a dish cloth, a shawl, a rug, a purse and a doily. The items I listed, I have crocheted. Some of them several times.

My latest creation was the last item I mentioned, a doily. I have never crocheted using such a small hook or such delicate thread. I chose a beginner’s pattern, because for this project, I am a beginner! There isn’t such a thing as an easy pattern. I have made mistakes on patterns that are easy and torn out several rows of yarn. I consider this a lesson learned. All crochet patterns require counting stitches as your proceed along a row. I have missed a stitch before. It is frustrating and educating all at the same time. But, isn’t that true of everything in life? A person doesn’t gain success without failure.

I finished this small doily today. It is a small one, but a beautiful one, in my eyes. I know the effort it took me to make it. People that don’t crochet, quilt or knit can’t comprehend the time, and the money, required to make any pattern. This is true of any type of craft. I find it gratifying when I have completed a project. The joy a new completed project brings to me is hard to describe.

I thank my Grandma, Beatrice Sundquist, for my love of crocheting. Had I really been paying attention, I would be quite the seamstress and I would knit too! She did all of them! I am fine with crocheting. But, who knows, I may take on another hobby!

I have more thread, so I plan to crochet another doily, or ten, in the future. I want to make a bigger one next time!

Have a great evening!

God Bless The USA

It saddens me to say this, but OUR country is headed on a downhill slide.

Why you ask? If you have to ask, you aren’t paying attention.

I remember the days of old. I may be aging myself, but i am fine with that. I do believe the “good old days” are the cherished days. We lived freely. As a child, I never worried about being abducted. I didn’t even know what that meant. I was blessed to grow up in a neighborhood so full of friends and loved ones. My great aunt and uncle lived across the street. I really never realized how lucky and blessed I was.

The world has changed. I wish I could say it changed for the better, but, unfortunately, I cannot.

Yes, I voted for President Trump, and I will again. Why? He was the better of the two evils. You couldn’t pay me to vote for Hillary.

Do I need to update you on how far left this country is? Turn on the news, you will hear it.

I have been watching Leave it to Beaver every morning rather than the news. I cherish the old ways of life, not what life is now. The news isn’t the news, not in my opinion. Journalism has disappeared. Hate is abundant. Speeding as fast as a car in the fast and furious!

I have a degree in journalism. I know how hard I worked to obtain that degree. I was 50 years old when I graduated from college! I was never so proud. I spent endless nights doing homework. All college students do, but I was much older than those fresh out of high school.

I was taught not, NOT, to report just one side of an issue. Report BOTH sides! If you report one side, you were bought! Enjoy your 15 minutes of fame. You will be in someone’s rear view mirror a minute later.

Now we have term-limit baby killers, those that believe babies can be left to die. I am outraged by this. We have our own senators/congress people saying we don’t need a border wall but yet we can kill babies. The same representatives want to take our guns, but yet they have bodyguards with guns and have a wall around their mansions? Please think about this!

I am concerned as a parent, a grandparent and above all, a citizen of this country! Are we headed to a civil war? I don’t know. But, I have read reports, legitimate stories, that indicate a war could happen, in our own country. On the soil we love. The land of the free and the home of the brave!

My opinion? President Trump is not a politician. He is a businessman. He has acknowledged that. Did he get to be a billionaire by being honest? Heck no! Have you known an honest politician? But, remember President Trump is not a politician.

I don’t care who he slept with or what deals he has made. Keep in mind, past Presidents were not honest. Read a book. Depend on your own resources rather than the media.

Read the reports about the economy, find the real news, do the research. I always do. I have always done my own research, never relying on the “reports” of other sources. I count on me.

I have faith in this country. I have faith in President Trump. I thank God each and every day he is the President of the United States of America! 

God Bless the USA!




What Did We Do During The Blizzard? Played Carrom

What activities did your family enjoy during the blizzard of 2019? Did you watch movies on television, dvd player or netflix? Did you play games or just take a nap?

Saturday, as the snow flew outside, Jeff and I watched some television, but not a movie. We bought Bohemian Rhapsody on dvd and planned to watch it Sunday on his birthday. But, mother nature blew in the blizzard and Jeff had to go to work. Cattle have to be fed! Blizzard conditions cause a great deal of havoc for those that have livestock to take care of. So, we haven’t watched the movie yet.

Saturday night, we decided to play a game. But, what game? We have many to choose from. We ended up getting out the carrom board.

I have included a picture of the carrom board. The object is to make your color of round discs into the pockets before the other player does. It is similar to pool, but you use your fingers to shoot them in, not a pool cue. Some carrom boards come with small sticks to shoot with. I don’t know if this one did. Jeff has had this board for years. I don’t remember if it had sticks or not. But, both Jeff and I grew up with a carrom board in the house, and we never had a stick so we wouldn’t use them if they were included.

Jeff grew up playing carrom. His family didn’t own a television until he was a junior in high school, so he played many games growing up. Checkers, cards and yes, carrom. He is very good at it too, which is unfortunate for me. My family had a carrom board too but I didn’t play very often. Some of the neighbors would come over from time to time and play carrom with my parents. I watched, but I didn’t play.

I am not sure how many games Jeff and I played Saturday night, but I would guess at least 30. I won one game. Yes, just one! But, I celebrated the one victory because it is the first time I have beat Jeff in all the years I have played him! Jeff is very competitive. I am not. I just like to have fun and we both had fun. Jeff kept winning and I kept trying until I finally won a game. I wouldn’t have cared if I hadn’t won any games. Being with my husband was the highlight of the blizzard. Spending time together, safe from the storm, in our warm cozy home, was precious. We made more memories to cherish forever. Life doesn’t get any better than that!

I hope everyone enjoyed time with those you love during the blizzard. Time together is precious every day, but during a winter storm, it is even more special. Had the storm not happened, people may have been busy with other things and not have spent the time together. Maybe Mother Nature was sending a message. Slow down, spend more time together, make the memories. Chores can wait. Time with loved ones cannot.

Have a great week!

Photo credit/Denise Gilliland, Editor and Chief/Kat Country Hub.


“In the process of letting go you will lose many things from the past, but you will find yourself.”

Deepak Chopra

How Do You Keep Abreast of the News? Reporting is Covering Both Sides of an Issue!

Do you read newspapers, read the news online, watch the news on tv or a mix of all three?

I consider myself a news “junkie.” I like to be “in the know” of what is going on, not just on a local level but also on a national level.

I used to watch all of the news I could on television. I have downsized. I watch local news, but not as much of the national news. In my opinion, since President Trump was elected, journalism has disappeared. Instead of reporting the news, they report their own views, which ultimately includes hate for the President.

I am a journalist. I know what real reporting entails. A good, legitimate reporter/journalist is to report both sides of an issue, not just the side they want the public to hear.

A great many of the journalists on the national level have apparently need to go back to college.

I still watch the news, but when the negativity starts, I shut it off. To know the facts, I watch first hand what the President says, his press conferences, the State of the Union message, etc. Then, I form my own thoughts.

I doubt this way of reporting will change until a Democrat is President. Again, my opinion.

To be hones, I have noticed the same type of reporting on a local level. I very rarely buy a local paper due to such bad reporting. A local reporter should not report one side of an issue, the side they want the local citizens to vote on. They should, as a good reporter knows, report both sides. The public has the right to know both sides of any issue, not just the reporter’s side. Especially if it involves any type of election of issue people are voting for or against. All of the facts need to be reported!

I am going to make an effort to step up my game and report on more of such issues. There were personal reasons I didn’t before, but witnessing the reporting unfold broke my heart, and my love of journalism. I lost faith for a while, but I am working towards changing that.

I want people to know what is going on, not from my perspective, but from the facts. That is the correct form of reporting.

Until next time!

Use caution the next few days. Stay safe and warm! The weather forecast does not look good, so keep an eye on the sky!



Senator Hansen’s Week Ahead

This week was the busiest week yet for my staff and I as three of my bills received their public committee hearings.  As mentioned in earlier columns, every bill introduced receives its own hearing where any member of the public can come and testify in front of a committee of senators.  Committee chairs schedule the hearings and notify senators when their bills will be heard. Once a bill is heard in committee, the senators will meet in an “Executive Session” to vote to the floor for debate, hold it in committee, or delay a vote.  Many bills are amended through the committee process as a result of suggestions brought up during the hearing.

LB 378 to require persons under the age of 21 years to wear a helmet was heard on Tuesday in the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee.  Many District 16 constituents came to testify – some in support and others in opposition.  Fifteen other senators who’ve cosigned this bill agree with me that riding motorcycles without a helmet is a matter of personal freedom and individual liberty.  I’m excited about the debate this bill will see on the floor.

LB 381 to change state agency reimbursement procedures was heard on Thursday in the Government, Military, and Veterans Affairs Committee.  I introduced the bill at the request of the Department of Administrative Services, which handles most administrative functions of Nebraska State Government.  The bill, if passed, would cut a lot of red tape currently required to process reimbursement claims for agency travel.

LB 312 to change restrictions placed on dental hygienists was also heard Thursday in the Health and Human Services Committee.  This bill would allow dental hygienists to work in home health or hospice settings and would encourage more hygienists to work in rural health clinics.  In preparing for the hearing, we discovered that 33 of Nebraska’s counties are without the services of a Public Health Registered Dental Hygienist, proving a need for expanded access to care in many rural areas of Nebraska.

My next review of property tax relief bills is a constitutional amendment proposed by Senator Linehan at the request of the Governor.  Legislative resolution 8 CA would limit the amount of property tax revenue raised by a political subdivision to only 3 percent more than what was raised in the previous year – with the exception that political subdivisions could raise more than 3 percent with a vote of the people.   Functionally, this would slow the growth of property tax increases and would likely be paired with other bills providing property tax cuts.  Because it’s a constitutional amendment this resolution, if passed by the legislature, would be placed on the ballot for a vote by all legal voters in the state.  As of February 15th, the resolution has not been scheduled for its public hearing.

You’re welcome to contact our office at (402)-471-2728 to speak with my Administrative Assistant, Ellie Stangl; or my Legislative Aide, Jacob Campbell.  You can also email me at  To follow along with the session please visit or you may watch the live stream when available at


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