Thursday, July 19, 2012

Farm Blog Zealot

Ladies meet Judi. I know her from reading FARMnWIFE, but it looks like she is one busy woman.  Judi has some great information for beginning bloggers if you are standing on the edge. For what ever reason you choose, blogging can be so much fun. It really does make the world a bigger place. We can learn so much from connecting and sharing with women from around the world. I am just amazed with what women are doing through blogging.  It really is a whole other world. Sometimes living rural can make us small and narrow if we let it. I love to see women talking about more than the woman next door. We’ve got places to go, people to meet, and things to learn. Let’s live our life on purpose and choose our beginnings and endings. The world awaits!  Have a great week ladies. You inspire me! ~ Kasse D.

To put it simply, I'm a Blog Zealot. More specifically a Farm Blog Zealot. Which is strange because I really don't like to write. What I do love is to tell others what is happening around the farm and photograph it all. I also think it is vitally important to keep a record of the events that shape our lives for future generations.

It started back in 2007, when I decided everyone should see how cute my kids were showing cattle. Thus the Kids' Cattle blog was born. In '09, I began another blog dedicated to my new combine, Big Green Combine. I have just recently joined that blog with our farm website, Graff Land And Last year I set my husband up with his blog and podcast, Farm And Ranch

Knowing how hard it is for beginners to find helpful information about starting a blog, I created  I wanted to high light how those in the ag industry are getting their story out and to inspire others to do the same through blogging. So on that site there are two sections. Featured Farmer shows how beginning farm bloggers are telling their story. The rest of the site gives advice and techniques on improving their own blogs.

You never know where blogging will take you. I have given presentations to ag business classes in universities. This summer I will be speaking to participants at the Ag Chat Foundation Conference. Currently I am a contributing author at which is based in Canada. It's even more fun to help bloggers in person.

My best advice to any blogger is:
   1. Make your blog clean, simple, uncluttered
   2. Tell Stories; It's how people connect.
   3. Provide a contact page
   4. Include pictures & video
For those who have trouble finding time to blog, my post 11 Ways to Speed Blog, has created the most personal "thank you's".

You can find me on twitter @farmnwife ; facebook FARMnWife & Pinterest farmnwife

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

This Uncharted Rhoade and The Faces of Agriculture

When I received our featured post this evening, I was so relieved to read that other women are speaking out on behalf of animal agriculture, addressing many of the same concerns my own family and friends have about the future of animal agriculture. (I wasn't aware Jamie was one of the voices behind Faces of Agriculture- you'll meet her soon) My mom has been on the forefront of this issue for years.  Her pleas falling on deaf ears until recently.  It is sad that we are waking up so late in the game, but better late than never.  I believe we still have a chance as voices are beginning to unite and expose.  I’ve tried to skirt controversy on RWR, well not really-  I'm a meat eating Jesus follower. This makes me pretty controversial these days.  God and Agriculture are two things on which this country has stood since it's birth. I believe there are things worth fighting for so I don't mind getting my hands a little dirty on this one.  Here it goes. Women while our families have been hard at work (or distracted by having to much), a thief has entered our pantry jeopardizing the future of our food sources, choices, and prices. As keepers of the pantry, we need to educate ourselves. I know it takes precious time, but nothing could be more important than feeding our families. I want to encourage you to set aside a good hour dedicated to researching who wants control of your cabinets. Dig deep. I encourage you to pay a visit to our next feature and her sites and follow along. I’m also going to give you a couple of additional starting places. If you have a pantry, this concerns you. Together our voices are louder.  Thanks Jamie for doing your part.  We are excited to have you!

Some Great Starting Places:

Animal Ag Armed

The Cavalry Group

Animal Ag Alliance

And now our feature for today, also speaking on behalf of animal agriculture, let's get to know Jamie Rhoade and the industry she represents.  Have a great day!!  ~ Kasse D.

I’m Jamie, and I blog over at This Uncharted Rhoade, where I tend to ramble on about life and try to share the story of modern day animal production. I didn’t grow up on a farm per say, but defiantly in a rural setting. I was active in both 4-H and FFA, and showed beef cows in the county fair (and my grandfather before me raised show cattle also). I come from a family of farmers – both of my grandfathers raised crops and livestock. My mom showed sheep when she was younger and the first beef cows I ever owned came from my grandpa’s farm.

I’ve lived in the Midwest all my life – in a flyover state – and went to college at a nearby University with a great ag school. I started off majoring in Agricultural Journalism but switched half way through to Animals Sciences. While I love to write, I loved being around and working with animals also, and I discovered that I just wasn’t cut out for the liberal Journalism school where most of my Ag J classes were. So I made the switch and didn’t look back.

Currently, I work at that same University in the animal sciences department. I work under a federal grant where we study the effects of heat stress on pregnant gilts (pigs who are pregnant for the first time). I collect a lot of data and scoop a lot of feed (and poop!), but every six months I work 16 hour days for a couple of weeks and I’m rewarded with anywhere from 200-300 baby piglets.

When I’m not working I’m usually hanging out with my husband and our 5-month-old husky puppy. My husband works on the farm with his dad, where they manage a couple of nursery hog barns with about 3000 pig, some row crops, hay pastures, and around 200 beef cows. We have about 20 beef cow/calf pairs of our own, and are working to increase that over time. We hope to be able to buy some land eventually to run cows on also.

I started my blog with the intention of being able to share with others the story of agriculture and help people understand why farmers use conventional farming methods such as gestation crates, giving hormones and antibiotics, etc. I get so frustrated when I see people take organizations like HSUS and PETA at face value (when their main goal is to abolish animal agriculture), yet don’t try to get to know farmers or don’t believe that we care about our animals. It’s hard for me to write a post and share what I love and then find comments accusing me and other farmers of being less than respectful of our animals. But I know in my heart I’m doing the right thing, and try each day just to share my story and make a difference.

A couple months ago I met another blogger who felt the same way, we together we started the blog Faces of Agriculture. On there, we try to share the story of farmers, ranchers, and other involved in agriculture (if you’re reading this and want to share your story on there, please contact me!). It is our goal to show everyone that farmers – whether they manage a 5000 head hog operation or have chickens and goats in their back yard – are all people who care very much about their animals are trying to do the right thing.

It’s so encouraging to me to find sites such as Rural Women Rock, where those involved in agriculture can share their stories and meet others like themselves. I come from a long line of rural women – women who cooked and cleaned and kept house – but could also drive a tractor, birth a lamb, and work cattle with the best of them. I have so much love for these women – my grandmothers, mom, mother-in-law, aunts – and hope that someday I can be half the person they are. 

While I border a little too far on the rough around the edges side to be considered a good housewife, I’ve come to discover that cooking for my husband isn’t all that bad – as long as they don’t leave me out when there’s a calf that needs to be pulled or calves that need to be worked :)

Thanks again Kasse for having me! You can find my personal blog here, and I’m also on Facebook and Twitter

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Awake My Soul

                                                              Awake My Soul Printable

I feel like the Holy Spirit prompted me to write this for today.  I'm not sure for who but I'm certain why.

If you are out there reading, and a little new to the idea of a Savior, I beg you give Him a chance to meet you right where you are. If you fervently seek Him, you will find Him. Once the Lord meets you where you are, he will call you to do many things. He will show these things to you in the right time in His Word (Bible) and in your Spirit, and you will be convicted of them. It will be day by day- not all at once. He will have you leave things behind, but give you more than you could have imagined. He will bring people into your life that you will desperately need and His timing will be perfect in everyway.

He will bring you to know about all things in Him-about baptism and The Holy Spirit. He will lead you to a church among other things. That is what is to come. If you are sitting right here, right now, and know nothing, all you need is a Bible and an open conversation with the Lord (praying). You can not do it wrong the first time. If you seek Him, he will lead you to the right way in all things. When you talk to the Lord just be honest with Him, even if you have a little anger- or a lot. Talk to the Lord like he is your counselor/friend or the best person you know. Asked to be filled with the Holy Spirit for guidance. Ask Him to help you find Him. (that sounds strange I know) He Loves you. He will not be angry. He will be eager to show Himself to you. Stay in prayer as long as possible as often as possible. Spend as much time in the Word (Bible) as possible as often as possible asking/praying the Lord lead you to truth. Ask Him to not leave you behind, to show Himself to you. Tell Him you want to know Him.

Your life will never be the same. You will be amazed by what He has awaiting you. You will be awakened,  brought away from a place you never knew you were, and put on a new path to places you never knew you could go. Don’t wait. Do it now! Start by saying His name out loud: Jesus. Want nothing more than the WILL of God. I can’t wait to see you there!

Matthew 7:7-8 Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find: knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be open.

Jeremiah 33:3 Call to me and I will answer you, and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.

John 5:14-15 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us- whatever we ask-we know that we have what we asked of him.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

Ephesians 2:22 And in Him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

John 14:26 "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you."

Phillipians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable. If anything is excellent or praiseworthy- think about such things. What ever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me- put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

James 1:22 Do not merely listen to the word... Do what it says.

1 John 3:18-24 Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence. whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us,, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him. And this is his command; to believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. Those who obey his commands live in him, and he in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

Ephesians 5:14 For it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said: “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead and Christ will shine on you”

Monday, July 2, 2012

Loving Old Recipes

Ladies, meet Holly Haynes of Heritage Recipes. I’ve been so excited to introduce Holly. I think this is such a brilliant idea and I commend Holly for all the work she has put into her site. You can tell it is a labor of love. If you love heirloom recipes, you are going to eat this up. I too found Heritage Recipes looking for a Sand Plum Jelly Recipe- they are ripe in northwest Oklahoma along with the wild currents. I found just the recipe I needed on her site. I’m not going to bumble on and on. I have jelly to make and tons of it. I can’t wait to tell you why, but that is for another day soon. Today I’ll let Holly tell you what she is up to- Rural Women Rock!!
~Kasse D. is a website dedicated to sharing old family recipes and the stories behind them.   I created the website in 2004 mainly because I collect old recipes.  I believe that old family recipes are not being handed down to the next  generation as they have in the past.  We are more likely to Google a recipe than to call an elderly family member to ask them about a recipe.

My collection of old family recipes started with pickle recipes.  I grew up in a family with a strong farming background, in rural Kansas.  Every summer my mom canned and I was her kitchen canning helper.  She put up tomatoes, beans, peas, corn, pickles and lots of jams. (I actually think I inherited the “canning” gene from her – I can’t be trusted to go alone to a farmer’s market!  Goodness knows how many bushels of peaches I may haul home, but that’s a story for another day!)  I was the person who picked and weeded the garden, washed the jars, snapped the beans and did whatever she told me to do.

After college I lived in Eastern Oregon, and my canning gene really kicked in.  Every Saturday morning I would drag one of my friends to Milton-Freewater, OR and we would shop the roadside markets.  Back home, we would spend the rest of the day canning.  I’m sure my neighbors thought it odd that a 22-year-old single girl was spending her weekends canning, but they started sharing their recipes with me.  After I married, we would visit my husband’s family in rural Appalachia – here I discovered a treasure trove of old family pickles recipes  -- mostly dill and sweet pickle recipes.  (His Aunt Chris’s pickle recipe is really a “candied” pickle.) 

Then, in the late 70s while living overseas my Aunt Almedia sent me her Bread and Butter Pickle recipe, and the rest is history.  I was hooked on finding old family recipes.  My collection started slowly as I would ask a family member for a recipe and they would send along with a little background about where they got it.  When I started the website, I had a small collection of cookbooks and maybe a couple hundred recipe cards.   Now thanks to help from my husband and family members, I have over 600 old recipe books and thousands of recipe cards.  (I can’t go to an estate sale and not buy the old recipe cards – if I don’t buy them, I know they are going to the dump.) 

 To launch the website I started with a few of my own recipes, along with their stories, and asked my friends to send me their old family recipes.  I naively thought I would launch the site and recipes would pour in from the general public – but that has not been the case.  I’m lucky to get one recipe a month.  The number of recipes on the site have slowly increased over the years – with about 300 now.  But the ones I do have are well loved.  Just read a few of the visitor comments.

What I do get is thousands of visitors looking for lost family recipes.  Everyone seems to have an old family favorite but because they didn’t ask for the recipe when the family member was still alive and could still remember how to make the dish, the recipe is lost.  I get the most visitors at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Mother’s Day and during Sand Plum Jelly season. 

Sand Plum Jelly Season  has a life of its own.  By tracking my website statistics I can track the Sand Plums as they ripen.  The season starts in Texas and moves north.  I get about 500 visitors per day to the Sand Plum Jelly page during the season.  I can tell you that right now, the Sand Plums along the Arkansas River around Wichita must be getting ripe, because I’m seeing a lot of visitors from there. (And it looks like the Sand Plums in Northern Kansas and Nebraska are starting to turn.)
Aunt Almedia -- Sand Plum Picking!

My favorite Sand Plum jelly story has to do with a plea I placed on the page a few years ago.  My Aunt Almedia really loved Sand Plum jelly, but by her early 90s she couldn’t get out to pick them anymore and her friends who had picked them for her in the past were picking their sand plums in heaven.  So I placed a note at the top of the Sand Plum page asking if anyone had some jelly I could buy.  (I live in Western Washington, no Sand Plums here.)  Within a few minutes I had an email from a jelly-maker in Enid, OK who had jelly and sent it to my aunt the next day.  My aunt was thrilled! 

Another thing I get a lot of is requests for old recipes.  By using Google, I am able to find nearly all the lost recipes people are looking for.  For those I can’t find, my next step is to look through my old cookbooks.  If I still can’t find it, I post it on my Old Recipe Detective blog

If you have any old family recipes to share (along with their story), send them to  If you are looking for an old recipe, try Google first!
Holly, Editor,

Rolling along again!!

We have a great group of ladies lined out for the coming month. My goal this month was to at the very least get Tuesdays booked. I know we are all so busy this time of year- come to think of it, I’m not sure what time of year we’re not busy. I couldn’t help but to book some Thursdays too, so we’ll just see how it all comes together. I may just go ahead and book the month regularly (both Tuesdays and Thursdays) if the interest is there. Can’t wait to get things rolling again. We will only have one feature this week. I will be introducing her in the morning. You won’t want to miss it- I’ll give you a hint: It has something to do with the past and good foodJ

I’m also excited about August. August is going to be our RWR Preparedness month. With all the talk about this subject, I’d like to weigh in on the issue with my opinion and where I stand as it pertains to rural women. I am inviting a great group of women to be featured in August who have some expertise in the area of preparedness who will share with us on the subject. I’m really excited about this. I think we are all going to learn a lot. If you are a current member who has already been featured, and would like to weight in on this subject, please email me. I’d love to have you ladies join in during the month with your personal view, ideas, and advice. Also, if you know someone that we should invite, do let me know. I realize we are not all going to fall in line with the same opinion, but I do think it will be interesting to see where we are on the subject. Well, I wish you all a very safe Holiday week. Let’s talk to our children about our freedom and the price that was and is being paid to insure it. Happy 4th of July Week!!! I’d also like you ladies to post what you are eating this week to our FB page if you fancy. I’m hungry!! Have a great one!!

The thought for today...........................

~Kasse D.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Journaling Scripture

2012-07-01_18-33-27_434.jpg   These are a few scriptures I had jotted down over the past few weeks for various reasons in my journal. I jot down all sorts of things, but mainly prayers and requests and things I feel the Lord is speaking to me. I write down when prayers have been answered or revelation. I ask questions and for the Lord to show me certain things. I take notes from things I'm reading and scripture.  It’s amazing to read back over a month.    There were two specific things I want to share, but I couldn't get them straight in my mind. He has perfect timing, so it will come. Enjoy!   

Exodus 2:23-25

During that long period, the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help, because of their slavery, went up to God. 24 God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. 25 So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.


Pslam 40:1 I waited patiently for the Lord: he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.


Matthew 6:33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

Jeremiah 33:3 Call to me and I will answer you, and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.

Romans 12 1-2 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice- the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

Philippians 4:6-7 Don‘t worry about anything: instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God‘s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

2 Tim 1-7 Fear not for I am with you.

1 Cor. 7:23 You were bought at a price, do not become slaves to men.

John 10:27 My sheep listen to my voice: I know them, and they follow me.


Phil 4:9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me- put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

Isaiah 26:3 You will keep perfect peace in him whose mind is steadfast because he trusts you.

Read 1 Peter Chapter 1 and 2. You won’t be sorry!!!

Read Hebrew 11 especially 13-16

Hope you have a wonderful week!!

My grandfather and mother have passed down a life time of journaling. I am due to receive my grandfather's journals in which he faithfully wrote daily for over 60 years. I’m not as disciplined, as he rarely misses a day.

My journal of choice is a Moleskine.