Safely Cut Pond Ice

Maintaining access to a water source is one of the most important winter-time chores.

Hand-Milling Sorghum

A great opportunity to use a new hand-driven sorghum mill and cook down a small batch of sorghum for the crowd at the Lawrence Kansas MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR in October!

Emerging Brawn

Work on the farm gets easier as kids grow and get physically able to tackle chores with more strength.

Drought Again?

Are we headed into another year of drought? Already, we are behind on precipitation for this year, and for the last two years. What strategies can we implement to utilize minimal rain and resources better?

Veggie Lovers: Good Green Salad!

A family meal favorite that was shared with us for years by a beloved aunt. This is one green salad that I crave and never get enough of!

Slow Down, Watch

I feel that if we want to connect to our families, to our neighbors and to the people that we love that live in the community around us, we must somehow retrain ourselves to slow down and watch, listen and share, love and care.

Sorghum Revival: Shared Memories I

Sorghum memories have been shared with me from across the nation. It has been a pleasure to connect with readers as they lend their own (or family members) connections and experiences with this wonderful community building craft.

Campout Skillet!

As everyone gathers around this campfire this fall, unite this variety of flavors into one savory skillet that will be enjoyed by all.

Potato Digging

Harvesting our potatoes is another family event where everyone gets their feet and hands a little dirty!

Canning Love: Pickled Beets

I'm going to the old Kerr canning book for this tried and true recipe for making simply wonderful pickled beets.

Trellising Cucumbers

Trying to decide the best way to trellis my cucumbers and learning some new techniques.

Rambling Rose Ramblings

A beautiful old, old, rambling rose bush that grows on my moms corner fence post greets us with pink blooms each spring.

I Just Couldn't Do It

I don't get grossed out very easy - but this special cut of beef made me cringe!

Springtime Madness: Lovin' It

The peaceful tranquility of farm life is often more or less controlled chaos, especially during the busy spring season!

The Hoophouse Tomato: In the Ground!

Spring is here and those tomato plants that were started in January are settled into their new hoophouse home. I have hopes for early tomatoes; will a late freeze stifle this goal?

Chicken Noodle Soup, Homegrown!

Chicken soup is nutritious and delicious! Starting with a homegrown chicken, stewed to make a wonderful broth (giving the soup extra depth of flavor), and coupled with home-made egg noodles; this is a comfort that can't be beat!

Sorghum Revival: Making Better Sorghum Syrup

I recently spent the weekend in Tennessee to attend the NSSPPA Conference and yearly meeting to meet other sorghum makers and learn more about the process. I came away with new techniques, different seed varieties and a feeling of camaraderie with the other producers.

4H Needs You

4-H is a youth organization that can be a great resource for skill-building in our communities. No matter what you do or what your interest, spending time with your local club is a worthy contribution.

Sorghum Revival: You Can Do This!

There is a coming resurgence of the appreciation of the hearty homespun sorghum syrup. Something is special about being part of making this “home-made” sugar that speaks to the self-reliant nature inside all of us. You can be part of the Sorghum Revival!

Trade and Barter

Sharing can become a network of trading and bartering within your community.

Pumpkin Pie Tutorial

Make a pie from your own pumpkin puree, using a from-scratch pie crust!

Mistletoe Hunting

Mistletoe is such an interesting parasitic plant! Have you spotted it in your treetops?

The Strawberry Strategy

Do you love strawberries? It is hard to decide on the best way to manage them if attempting to grow them. I want strawberries bad enough to try to figure out what method works best for me.

A Day to be Thankful

Make your Thanksgiving day even more special by including your own home-grown goodness to the meal.

Back to the Old Grind(er)

One of our family treasures is an old iron mill. We had an opportunity to get the old mill out this fall and grind some beautiful wheat that we had been gifted with.

Black Walnut Season

For many of us here in the Ozarks the harvesting of black walnuts in October has become not only a way to make extra money, but a timeless tradition.

Fried Apples 'N' Onions

Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about growing up on the frontier for both her and her husband. Her book about Almanzo's childhood recalls some of his favorite foods, including "fried apples 'n' onions".

Canning Love: Candied Jalapenos

As a killing frost approaches we scramble to harvest what we can of summer vegetables that would shrivel and die after being glazed with an icy coat. Peppers that survive summer heat always seem to become prolific producers as the weather cools. With scads of peppers to preserve, this recipe for candied jalapenos that can be modified to use with a mixture of peppers is not only beautiful, but delicious!

It's a Good Day to Make Sorghum

Today we made sorghum here on our farm in the Ozarks. It's about the best way to spend a beautiful fall day.

Gotta Have It! Skillet Cornbread

Cornbread is an essential accompaniment to many good country meals. I think it's best when cooked at high heat in a cast iron skillet. Try out my method and let me know how you like to eat and make cornbread!

Purple Hull Peas?

So, what are Purple Hull Peas? They are a green shelled pea that cooks into a creamy, yummy delight! They are easy to grow and can also be found at local farmers markets.

Fried Okra; It's NOT Slimy!

Okra is a tasty favorite lightly coated and fried in the skillet. Try this recipe if a fear of slimy okra deters you from enjoying this summer vegetable.

Canning Love: Peach Orange Marmalade

Canning is a homesteader essential skill. Sometimes canning can simply be a way to create and spread love and kindness, rather than just putting by necessary foods. Try out this Peach Orange Marmalade recipe for a change of pace.

The Garden Spider

These large, beautiful, long legged creatures of late summer thrill and amaze.

Dealing With Drought

It's been a rough summer for gardeners and farmers alike. Here's how we've been dealing with drought and a few tips on watering.

PESTO! Full of Flavor

Basil is at its best during hot summertime weather. Pick it, wash it and make it into appetizing, healthy pesto!

Summer Squash Time of Year

Feeling overwhelmed with summer squash? Have you given it away, grilled it, fried it and baked it till you were blue in the face? Here are some of my favorite ways to use this prolific producer!

Running on Fumes

Do you feel like the month of June left you gasping for air? You are not alone. I am hoping July will be slower paced and full of summertime fun!

My Sweet Huckleberry

A day trip in the hills finds us in the midst of huckleberry country bearing ripe fruit.

Summertime Hay Hauling Memories

Hay season on the farm is different now then when I was growing up, but I will never forget those long summer days out in the hay field with my family.

Three Cheers for the Volunteers!

What a nice surprise it can be to notice new spring babies emerging from where their parent plants grew the year before. Volunteer plants are a wonderful gift!

The Broiler Chicken Project

We raise broiler chickens from hatchlings for a 4-H fair project every summer. This is a fun, managable project that provides us with some fresh poultry meat as well.

A Hoophouse on the Horizon, part 2

Time to pick out the right hoophouse for my growing needs and install it! It will be a lot of work, but will offer a new farming experience that will expand my harvesting season.

Growing the Giants

Have some fun in your garden this year and grow something giant!

A Hoophouse on the Horizon

Putting up a hoophouse expands the growing opportunity into the barren winter months. A USDA program is helping market growers purchase a hoophouse to find out if local farmers and consumers reap benefits from extending local growing seasons.

On the Farm, a Tale of Sorrow and Hope

Confrontation with life and death situations are unavoidable when living on a farm. Seeing baby animals come into the world is beautiful, but sometimes these beautiful moments can be full of anxiety if things aren't going just right.

Time to Start Sweet Potato Slips

I can't imagine my garden without sweet potatoes! Sometimes it is hard to find sweet potato slips for sale, so I start my own with some of last years potatoes.

Pigs For the Summer

Keeping feeder pigs over the summer is a good way to use garden leftovers and produce great tasting home-grown pork!

With a Packet In My Pocket

To ensure we have a full productive garden, each spring I start a habit of carrying a packet of seeds in my pocket every time I head to the garden!

Quest for Corn

Growing field corn for livestock, home use and future crops; a grain for sustainable living.

Harrow the Heck Out of It!

A harrow tractor implement is very helpful in breaking up manure and old hay on pasture ground.

Chevron: Butchering a Goat

Sherry’s son worked hard to raise a goat. Read how he, with the help of family and friends, butchered and prepared the meat for a homegrown Chevron treat.

On the Farm: Preparing for the Blizzard

A few considerations before the arrival of a winter storm can help you, your family and your farm animals survive during frigid blizzard conditions.

Spring Awaits Us!

Getting ready for the new garden season is full of anticipation and ideas!