“The youth group is going canoeing on Wednesday! Can I go? Please?” I asked after church one summer Sunday. “Only if it rains. We are lucky enough to have a hundred acres of hay to make!” was the reply from my dad, who added, “It’s going to be a hayin’ party!” trying to make it […]
Returning home at dusk, we came to a dead stop last night while turning in to our lane. A skunk was playing with her two very tiny babies as if they had found themselves a really great amusement park. As we watched them flip somersaults, we could see that one baby skunk was mostly white, […]
Sutherland remembers her father and what Memorial Day means to her.
(Part three) In the early 1960s, a 23-inch black and white television set cost $219, with a 26-inch color TV going for $379. If a family owned a black and white set that was still working just fine, not very many were in a huge hurry to shell out nearly $400 for a newfangled item […]
(Part two) The first time color came to the TV screen for us to see, it seemed the whole world had changed. That NBC peacock came strutting on to the screen, preening those gloriously colored feathers, and it was as though a magic wand had been waved over our world. I asked my sister to […]
(Part I) In my childhood, television was very limited. And I mean that in every possible way. First, it went without saying that the television was never to be turned on when there was work to be done. And there was ALWAYS work to be done. TV in the middle of the day? I remember […]
A wealthy senior citizen spent a good bit of time showing off some photographs of his collector cars one morning recently. I was impressed by the scope of his stellar collection, but a part of me was drifting off long before the photo parade came to an end. Collecting perfect antique sports cars, only to […]
They’re born and the next thing you know, your children are adults. How does that happen?
The farm ‘chain gang’ toiled in the fields, in the hot sun. But we weren’t planting or weeding or even picking a crop. Unless you call rocks a crop.
Sometimes just the right words, placed on paper, can help make sense of what seems totally senseless.
In historical terms, I had never really thought about how young our country was in the 1930s. The United States Regional Cook Book, edited by Ruth Berolzheimer, copyright 1939, made me realize this simply by the index of the book. Broken down in sections for the Scandinavian part of the country, the Wisconsin Dutch and […]
One aspect of country life that interests me most is that it is never the same day after day. There are always new footprints on the snow, some familiar, like those of the skunks, who leave a special track near the big old trees where the tail drags, and some others that are impossible to […]
In a recent poll among U.S. citizens, 73 percent believe America is heading in the wrong direction. One friend quipped, “but hey, with the price of gas, we can’t afford to get there!” I was coming of age during our first real gasoline spike back in the late 1970s. Just prior to it, I can […]
By JUDITH SUTHERLAND Farm and Dairy columnist I read with interest the academic study report just released that says growing up on a farm impacts immune system health in a positive way. The University of Bristol’s School of Veterinary Sciences research has shown that spending early life in a complex farm environment increased the number […]
A Pekingese isn’t your typical farm dog, but they’ve been the favorite of columnist Judie Sutherland her whole [farm] life.
The year that I turned 6 was a big year. I started first grade. I started piano lessons — against my will. And I started helping with the daily chores of feeding calves. School was kind of nothing new. I had spent hours playing school at a real student desk with three big sisters telling […]
One of my favorite photographs, displayed where I can see it often, is a candid shot of my dad with John McNaull. They stand talking and laughing amid the backdrop of antique tractors, a passion they shared.
There is no other relationship quite like those of teacher-student, and the shadow of some of those connections follow the student for a very long walk in to adulthood.
As we watch our world changing, environmental landscapes shaved away, plowed under and concrete poured over, all for the sake of development and sprawl, we displace so much that deserves preservation.
Cats of every color and every possible temperament have long been a part of just about any farm I have ever set foot on, and most can agree that they are good to have around if they are capable hunters.