D. Susan Rutz
A look at some country mailbox owners displaying their creativity.
What does this dream mean?
The sounds in the country are far different than those of the cities.
A letter to Santa requesting Christmas miracles
tree carvings, dogs made of staples, houses decorated to keep out the vagrants
Riding a bike is not as easy as shown on TV commericals, it is a skill that should be left to children.
Flags flying high at a local cemetery on Memorial Day weekend.
At the end of any road can be a surprise, but especially on gravel roads.
Winter is finally ending and the hope of spring is in the garden.
Pretending to be what you are not does not mean you are crazy or insecure.
My first ghost was interesting but the next one is going to be intense.
Watch out for the heat over this fourth of July. Don't be a hard-headed person like me.
Being thankful for more than items and other tangible things is important. As well as a brief introduction about my lifestyle.
Questioning why we still have zoos when it is available on-line and documentaries on TV.
Sometimes you just need a friend to get you through the greatest challenges.
Sometimes you just have to take out time to do something you’ve always enjoyed, such as sewing. A fun project for your granddaughter makes it even better!
What happened to the crafts of the past?
Starting over at any age is difficult; starting over in a different environment is exciting!
Weather predictions - when is spring going to be here?
Starting over in the country.
Join Farm on the Hill's Lori Havens as she shares some inexpensive ideas for decorating your autumn table with the simple beauty of nature!
Iron pans are great for every thing on a farm, ranch or homestead.
Gramma tells a story about a mistake she made and what she learned from it.
Watching the effects of the drought saddened us.
Maybe an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but processing them daily certainly makes one tired!
A short photo list of what I am thankful for.
For my inaugural blog post for Capper's Farmer, I'd like to take a few minutes to explain myself. Trust me, I need to.
From bright and sunny to dense black fog.
To all the beauty of fall that we've enjoyed in the past, thanks to our little farm, we have added the joy of the harvest!
Donna Rae creates and tests two styles of handmade dishcloths.
It is always fun sharing a skill with grandchildren, such as food dehydration.
Figs, figs and more figs. Some ideas about how to use figs.
Cave men knapped glass knives for hunting. During the Great Depression glass knives became quite the item to have. Glass knives cut cleanly and didn't tarnish like carbon knives. They were a perfect in the kitchen and at cutting cakes for tea.
A home-cooked dessert for comfort and citrus bliss.
You never realize how much you already know about the self-sustaining lifestyle - until you start doing it on your own!
We are trying to eat more 'greens' and found that buying organic can get costly. I planted plenty this year in hopes of having a good crop to make many green smoothies in our new Vitamix.
The story of how we got here and who we are.
From a table-top to yard. How our Christmas tree became a living Christmas tree.
The Raptor Research Project has followed a pair of Eagles near Decorah, Iowa, for many years. The first of three eaglets is expected to hatch between March 23 and 25. Our family is fascinated watching this bit of nature we couldn't otherwise see.
Using natural fibers and felting needles, designs can be made in felt. With a few tricks, anybody can learn to do this.
In the wake of the housing crisis, more people are investing money in their homes when buying a new one is not an option. Here are some of the best ways to save money on your home projects.
Old-World archways create an elegant, open flow from one space to another and are much easier to create than you might think!
We refer to our first year at the farm as the cleanup year. Now, we would begin the second which soon became known as 'the planting year.'
How personal experience and observation can save your sanity
Finding ways to live in our world responsibly can bring us satisfaction and happiness.
Recipe for guacamole and ways to use it.
A transplant's recognition of the realities of farm life and how to adjust.
You never know where life is going to take you, so it’s a good idea to be ready for anything. My family once had a different life, but circumstances changed, there was a period of flux, then we came out better than ever.
We finally complete our much anticipated and ballyhooed chicken pen extension.
Memories of corn de-tasseling.
Two bloggers realize they live in the same city and decide to meet.
A small family farm seldom makes you wealthy – there aren’t too many trips to Europe and the retirement plan can be pretty “iffy.” But farming brings its own rewards, those that in the end mean far more than the lights of Paris.
What do you do when you have baby sheep running around your house because it is too cold outside? Diapers!
May Day, lilacs are in bloom, strawberries and asparagus.
Just because you live on a homestead and work hard doesn't mean you can overlook your calorie intake. Believe me, it can get out of control very quickly! Noticing subtle changes in how you feel and how you look in the mirror can keep you on track!
Here's an authentic recipe for buttery cookies using the addition of almond flour.
Inspired by a Danish friend, I give you step-by-step instructions to make authentic Danish sourdough rye bread.
Planting an apple tree appropriate for your zone, pollination and disease resistance is a science. Thankfully, the Stark Bro’s catalog gives all the information needed.
How we managed to travel across the country twice only to realize that we left something incredibly important behind.
Re-purpose old louver doors into a lovely bookshelf in just one day!
We were continually working either in the city or on the farm, and loving every moment of it.
The amount and type of junk would overwhelm anyone, but we persisted in the cleanup, and now our land is lookin’ good!
We vaccinate and doctor our heifers and castrate our bull calves.
Let me share with you the finer nuances of canning using recipes that have been handed through the generations.
Karen walks you through what to do when dealing with viruses or parasitic nematodes in the garden. She also provides a quick overview of her previous posts on vegetable diseases.
Rather than choosing one variety of seed, let your little micro-climate choose it for you by growing a landrace!
My journey of raising sheep as a kid and again now 20 years later. Lots of old pictures of me back then.
In reading books of yesteryear, when a young girl was about to marry, her mother purchased yards and yards of material and sewed for days making all the linens she would need for her bed, kitchen and table. Sometimes these would already have been made and waiting in her hope chest.
You can make unique hot pads for yourself or for presents with little or no cost.
The author notes with relish all the amazing things a homesteader can accomplish with WD-40.
The author comes up with some surprising facts about Daylight Saving Time.
The author talks about her own experiences of bad winter weather and tells a few stories of tragic Great Plains blizzards.
This fermented milk drink is very easy to make and so healthy for you!
A paragraph or two on what different people consider comfort foods.
New Orleans inspired the recipe for BBQ Shrimp.
The stages of a homesteader and how we go from obsessive interest to peaceful stability.
The first year of our hobby farm continued.
Beat winter's chill with this delicious, made-from-scratch chai tea!
You never know what will happen when you leave a garden unattended.
My mama's hen laid a double yolked egg. My Minnesota poultry expert friend explained how it happened.
Particularly when traveling. A visit to the American West includes rafting the Colorado River and exploring Mesa Verde cliff dwellings.
A story of a girl who loved small town 6-on-6 Iowa girls' basketball.
My husband bought me a dry blade container for my Vitamix, but I put off using it. When I finally did, I couldn't believe how simple it was. Why did I procrastinate?
The author shares her experience in taking care of older horses and keeping them healthy and happy.
These tasty cookies make excellent Christmas gifts.
Some of the varieties of free fruits available for the taking. All it takes is a little time, a little work, and some scouting of the area for what grows in your neck of the woods.
Raising heirloom tomatoes, like all farming, is full of challenges. This year we have battled blossom end rot and the war's not over yet.
When I couldn't find the right sized tablecloth just a day before having 12 people over for a ministry meeting and lunch, I had to figure out how to make one with materials I keep on hand. Because the nearest department store is an hour away, buying one wasn't an option.
We married young and moved to the city, where jobs and responsibilities to our four children choked out dreams of any other lifestyle.
Learning to install fence and harvesting our own cedar fence posts proved to be a very gratifying experience.
This post is about the prolific growth of the garden over 16 hot, wet July days when we were away on vacation in the Yukon.
The author's husband - with a little assistance from the author - transforms a regular bed truck into a flat bed truck.
We are learning not to waste anything, not even rotted trees.
My daddy's mix of chickens and pig
There are many common sense ways to be kind to the planet (and the wallet), but here are a few other simple ideas.
The story of my chicken addiction.
You don't actually need to "play" in a state tournament to have a great time. Here are my memories!
Baker Creek Seed Catalog Arrives
Like all occupations, farming has its challenges. For that matter, so does life. In the midst of our busy days, we need to notice those good moments.
Sometimes before the rain, we live through those dry days. Rain brings the hope of the greening of the earth, of the life that water gives.
Daily lessons taught by your goats and how to best serve those goat lessons.
The basis for success in your garden is right at your feet!
When our family gets together, I am always asked to make our mom’s homemade rolls. These rolls are so easy and so delicious, especially hot out of the oven. Now that I am sharing our family recipe, you have no excuse not to make them yourself.
What Chef Elizabeth served for Christmas this year .
This blog is about handling “suprise” guests on your farm - something new to a city girl. It gives you a quick, simple and traditional recipe to have on hand for unexpected guests.
A small bench near a quiet pond on a cattle ranch. A Bible and a cup of tea.
We selected our trees, planted them with love, and watched them grow. Then the fun began - beautiful fruit growing on our very own trees!
We winterized the house and hoped for the best, but we didn’t want to leave.
Kellsey loves everything about summer, with the exception of triple digit temperatures. But even the dog days of summer help her dream about the future.
The author is proud of her accomplishment, and her dried figs are beautiful and delicious!
Dealing with bugs, snakes and oil.
Tips to help you get started working at home.
Grandma and Grandpa had a spring piped into the house, with the help of a neighbor we have resorted to other means.
California has had the worst drought year in recorded history. If we don't get some rain, farmers won't be the only ones crying the blues.
A trip to the garden to grab some cucumbers for a delicious down-home salad sends me on a trip down memory lane. Do you remember this recipe from your grandmother's kitchen table?
Donna Rae shares her experiences from the 2013 Heritage Harvest Festival at Monticello.
A short story about gathering hickory nuts in Central Iowa.
We think you'll be inspired to keep your old buildings when you read about Todd's ingenuity, perseverance and hard work while saving the old chicken house.
We overcame rocky soil and built a decorative fence.
A ranch's dirty little secret - the junk pile!
We go into how a hobbyist can actually make her own olive oil with a modicum of patience and the right equipment.
Sarah attended what she thought would be an ordinary farm-to-table dinner event at a local farm, but this was anything but an ordinary experience.
Restoring a porch glider.
A visit to an old barn that brings back memories and reveals many treasures.
A lifelong love of rhubarb.
A story about how I learned that not every rose smells like a true rose.
I started hanging clothes five years ago, shortly before we bought the farm, and I just can’t go back to using the dryer again.
Easy to make, easy to carry, easy to use. Hard lotion bars are all of these things, AND they work great!
Seed catalogs and garden plans are the first steps to an abundant harvest.
After gathering lots of old windows to build a greenhouse, life happened. We decided a mini version would be perfect this year!
As fall begins to settle in, Donna Rae fondly recalls those first back-to-school days as a child - as well as those experienced by her father.
I finally taught myself how to make a Christmas wreath from leftover fir trimmings - with a very rambunctious 1 year old to help.
I worked alongside my dad to build our goat shed.
Bim Bam and Cockoo clocks are part of my family history.
An Introduction To Our Old Place Farm
Re-discovering the simple things in life that really do make it better!
A goal of trying not to eat fast food fries turns into making them at home.
Hummus is a tasty and healthy treat. At this time of year it's great in a sandwich with garden-fresh tomatoes!
We try to use the least harmful solution to get ride of garden pests and weeds. This easy-to-make weed killer really works!
Making soap is fun and rewarding. A great rainy-day project!
Canning jam is an easy way to get your feet wet if you are a beginning canner. They are practically foolproof and don't take long or require any experience. Best of all, they taste delicious!
Canning ketchup is easy and tastes a whole lot better than store-bought!
Kale chips are easy to make and delicious! Save money by making them at home.
Give up paper towels and substitute homemade "un-paper" towels instead!
Crackers are fun to make and taste great!
Building berms around trees and shrubs is important for water-wise watering. Mulching is mandatory for water retention and helps keep weeds down. Manure berms are especially functional.
Susan finally learned to appreciate homemade mincemeat after becoming a homesteader and canner. Bringing back wonderful memories of childhood, mincemeat is now a holiday staple at her house.
A rooster and his hen
Memories of Dad and Horses
Early spring on Green's Organic Farm and Apiary.
Mush is a tradition at our house. Anytime the family is together there will be at least one batch of mush.
A Wilson family tradition - homemade cinnamon rolls.
Preparing for spring.
It's time to remember that 'frugal' is not a dirty word. Doing things for ourselves feels good and makes us less dependent on big companies to have a full life.
With the wedding season upon us, I'm sharing a few DIY tips my husband and I used for our nuptial to put a unique spin on our wedding while staying debt-free.
Simple instructions for two versions of a sewn towel topper - an easy afternoon sewing project.
Basil is easy to grow even in small spaces. You can use your harvest to make this easy, delicious pesto!
Growing a delicious salad on your own front or back porch is easy. Once you've tried your own homegrown salad you'll never want any other!
I tried growing mustard with the idea of harvesting the seeds to make my own mustard. I wouldn't say it was a great success, but it was still fun!
Rewebbing lawn chairs is a fun winter project.
Learn to can your own homemade soups and always have a hot, hearty meal waiting in your pantry.
How to take the stress out of gift giving.
A cool creamy coconut pie is just right for Summer time.
Using old-fashioned gardening tools and methods.
Making the classic pot pie with rabbit meat.
A tale of two imaginative children.
A short story about what happens when you turn two boys loose in a peach orchard. Even when they are supervised.
My mother's lessons in the garden, and my eventual understanding of the soul that is in gardening.
The Kidding Season has begun at Green Spot Farm in Southeast Kansas.
An update of spring tasks and happenings at Green's Organic Farm and Apiary.
Using an old-fashioned apple press for great apple juice.
A rusty patio swing that was left in our yard by a family friend initially caused reactions of horror. But a second look, some paint, and new lawn chair webbing gave the swing an astounding facelift.
Making granola in the slow cooker is easy and it tastes great.
Keeping bees without breaking your back.
Simple to put together, chicken tunnels make for safe free ranging.
One of the first veggies of spring happens to be one of my favorites, peas.
Using re-purposed stones, see how we built our pit.
Make corned beef the way your mother used to make it.
A lesson on folklore and why it is sometimes true.
A story of hidey holes and the hows, and whys, of finding them on old farmsteads like my cousin did at her in-laws place.
A short history of a few Red Currant bushes at the ranch where my husband and I live.
Reminiscing about winter and the times when Santa would visit.
What happens when you try to show a teenage boy something and you are a preteen girl.
Fall Honey Harvest
A short dissertation on the differences between modern farming machinery and the ones my grandfather used.
A nostalgic look at my childhood visits to my grandmother's home in a small rural town on the Oregon coast and how she continues to influence my own garden and life decades after her death.