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January 12, 2020

Back in my careening youth, I spent a winter in Portland, Maine. It is a city on a hill, bisected by quaint cobblestone streets that weave their way between shops and houses, almost all of which have views of the ocean. Despite the fact that winter on the coast of Main...

December 21, 2019

Our halls are decked, the presents mostly wrapped, there’s even a figgy pudding waiting in our refrigerator, and I’m already getting nostalgic about the holiday season ending. 

Growing up, Christmas was my favorite time of year. There was always the anticipation of pres...

September 13, 2019

Both colanders are filled to the brim, as are my two biggest mixing bowls. The countertops are teeming as well. There are cucumbers waiting to be pickles, tomatoes waiting to be sauce, and zucchini waiting to be artfully hidden in nearly every meal I make from now unti...

May 23, 2018

One night last week, the temperature was predicted to dip nearly to freezing with high winds and lashing rain. My little flock is about halfway through lambing, so this wasn’t good news. The man of the ranch went out on a four-wheeler, rounded up most of the ewes and l...

April 18, 2018

First of all, have you noticed I keep writing that it’s spring, or almost spring, or sure to be spring soon, and it KEEPS NOT BEING SPRING. This past week featured record lows all over the state of South Dakota, and a swirl of winter storms. The man of the ranch has be...

April 5, 2018

I've been worse than terrible at keeping this updated, so there've been 6 months of postcards since the last time I posted...I will try to be better! 

You can listen to the audio here:


or read it below:

It's just before dawn, an...

October 3, 2017

It's that time again...my monthly postcard from the prairie. You can follow the link to listen, or read the longer piece from which it is excerpted below. 


Most of the mothers around here, including...

August 30, 2017

This entry is part of a series of monthly audio postcards I am writing and producing for South Dakota Public Radio...you can listen by following this link to their website: http://listen.sdpb.org/post/moment-coolidge-hills-and-lake-toba 

The first summer I gardened on t...

July 20, 2017

An author I admire, Susan Hand Shetterly, writes in her memoir, Settled in the Wild, “The winter after my daughter was I born, I would set her in her carrier, put her on my back, and take her in the afternoons, before dusk, into the woods. I believed even if she fell a...

March 14, 2017

Outside the wind is gusting at high speeds, pushing the branches of the trees eastward. The tallest trees in the windbreak are elms, and their bodies are all curved a little east anyway, from growing up with that wind I suppose. I am sitting in the sunlit alcove upstai...

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My “Little Pasture on the Prairie” started out as a borrowed slip of land and is now it is a full-fledged pasture with a windbreak of elms and fruit trees, a sturdy woven wire fence, and an odd assortment of orphans and vagabonds, most of them wearing wooly suits. There are also cats and chickens running in and out as they please, a milk cow, and two small humans I am lucky to have call me 'Mama.' These are the stories of our adventures -- and misadventures -- in the little pasture, and the joy of waking up every day to the quiet majesty of life on the northern plains.


For more photos and stories...

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December 21, 2019

September 13, 2019

April 18, 2018

July 20, 2017

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