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Over the years, my Mom has been able to trace our family way back.  Due to her passion and hard work we have a very real sense of who we are and where we came from.  Our family is truly blessed; we have a family tree with many sturdy branches and very strong roots.  One of those branches goes back to its roots in Ireland. My Great Great Great grandfather settled in Wisconsin on the original homestead that is still in our family today.  On this farm we have a living piece of history that has stood strong through all the generations.  I think of it as Our Family Tree.  So many generations of our family have climbed that tree or taken refuse under it when there was no such thing as air conditioning.  It, like my family has stood the test of time.  It is not often you can actually touch history.  This tree is living proof that with a strong set of roots one can flourish!

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It eagle-001.jpgnewman-in-the-snow-113.jpgstands alone on what was once pastureland and is now an island.  Time and water have taken its toll on this old tree.  It has been dead for as long as I have known it.  I have no way of ever knowing what kind of tree it was.  Once it gave shade to cattle and now it has become the centerpiece on the island in the pond.  This old tree has stood through Mother Nature’s moods and been a resting place for many kinds of birds.  I’m not quite sure how it happened, but over time I have become quite attached to this old hunk of wood.  After each violent summer storm, the first thing I look for is that old tree. Maybe it’s because it has given me so much pleasure to see the birds that stop by.  The pond and that old tree have attracted so much wildlife.  Depending on the season, the pond is home to ducks, geese, swans, herons, deer, fox and coyote.  Large birds of prey such as the Red Tailed Hawk, owls and Bald Eagles use it as hunting grounds. One would think a big old dead tree would be an eyesore and past its usefulness, but here it is the center of the beauty that is right in my backyard.

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