Tag: Holidays

Merry Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas 2017It’s Christmas time once again!

Thank you for another great year at Homestead on the Range! We are looking forward to bringing you even more helpful country living information in 2018.

Meanwhile, if you are looking for some helpful resources to start the new year right or just for a little interesting reading, allow us to make a few recommendations.


Best of 2017

From Homestead on the Range

3 Ways to Stay Posted3 Ways to Stay Posted


The Worst Jokes I Know (and I Know a Lot!)The Worst Jokes I Know (and I Know a Lot!)




Introducing Cowboy PoetryIntroducing Cowboy Poetry


Pros and Cons of Niche MarketingPros and Cons of Niche Marketing


Keeping a Garden JournalKeeping a Garden Journal


Winkler CraterWinkler Crater: A Kimberly Pipe in Kansas


What is a Landrace Breed?What is a Landrace Breed?


Seeds From the TombsSeeds From the Tombs


8 Reasons to Memorize Scales8 Reasons to Memorize Scales


The Wonderful Wizard of OzThe Wonderful Wizard of Oz


5 Tips for Improving Your Writing5 Tips for Improving Your Writing


British and Continental Cattle BreedsBritish and Continental Cattle Breeds




Ox Yokes and CollarsOx Yokes and Collars


Dog BreedsDog Breeds


Pros and Cons of Hot CompostingPros and Cons of Hot vs. Cold Composting


The Agricultural Adjustment Act in the Great Plains: Part 1The Agricultural Adjustment Act in the Great Plains


Kansas GovernorsKansas Governors




Web Soil SurveyWeb Soil Survey


Murray McMurray Chick SelectorMurray McMurray Chick Selector


Stockdog SavvyStockdog Savvy


How to Master the English BibleHow to Master the English Bible




Food PreservationFood Preservation


Top 10 Marguerite Henry BooksTop 10 Marguerite Henry Books


Cover Crop Decision ToolCover Crop Decision Tool


An Introduction to Heritage BreedsAn Introduction to Heritage Breeds


Kansas Ag ConnectionKansas Ag Connection




Luster Leaf Rapitest Soil Test KitLuster Leaf Rapitest Soil Test Kit


Pick PunchPick Punch




Shetland SheepdogShetland Sheepdog


The Worst Jokes I Know (and I Know a Lot!)
The Lifestyle

Last-Minute Gift Idea: The Worst Jokes I Know

The Worst Jokes I Know (and I Know a Lot!)Searching for an inexpensive last-minute gift idea perfect for children? Take a look at The Worst Jokes I Know (and I Know a Lot!): 101 Funny Bone Ticklers for Jokesters of All Ages by B. Patrick Lincoln.

This illustrated book is sure to delight jokers (cards, you might say) of all ages with puns new and old:

A very prudent gardener planted dollar bills throughout his entire garden. One’s first thought might have been that he wanted to grow the mythical money tree. But no, the gardener knew better than that. He was merely trying to ensure that he had rich soil.

Young jokesters will enjoy trying out clean, corny wordplay on their family, friends, and pun pals as they find out:

  • Why is it inadvisable to read the contents of this book to an egg?
  • Why was the ground delighted with the earthquake?
  • And why did the chicken really cross the road?

Share a laugh this Christmas!

Click here for more information and buying options. Free sample pages are available.

The Dawning of Indestructible Joy
The Lifestyle

The Dawning of Indestructible Joy

The Dawning of Indestructible JoyChristmas….

A time of music and laughter.

A time of bright lights and tinsel.

A time of friends and family.

A time of giving and sharing.

But more than that.

A time to celebrate the beginning of the greatest miracle the world has ever known.

A miracle that took just a little over 40 years to unfold, but that was planned all the way back at the dawn of time.

A miracle of eternal consequence to every single human being who ever was born and ever will be born.

That miracle began in a stable.

If you would like to take time this Christmas season to try to fully grasp the full implications of this miracle, you may enjoy The Dawning of Indestructible Joy: Daily Readings for Advent by John Piper. Through a series of 25 readings, you will be reminded of what Christmas and Christ are all about.

Each reading is brief—about five minutes or so. But the impact is lasting.

May true joy be yours this Christmas.

10 Gifts for Gardeners
The Garden

10 Gifts for Gardeners

10 Gifts for GardenersChristmas is just around the corner! If you are looking for a few ideas to bring a smile to the face of that gardener in the family this year, allow us to make a few recommendations.

  1. The Family Garden JournalThe Family Garden Journal. Our garden journal is a great way for a gardener to celebrate a year of growing plants. It features 366 pages with room for to-do lists, observations, harvest records, and other notes, and it even includes a shopping list, a map, a planting table, and other useful tools for planning a garden. Makes a great keepsake. Read more.
  2. Heirloom seeds. Heirloom seeds are sure to delight! Choose varieties with a compelling story and an attractive appearance. If the seeds come from your own heirloom garden, that makes them even more special.
  3. The Christian Kids’ Gardening Guide. Looking for a gift for a budding green thumb? This delightful little book offers both practical growing tips and fun activities to foster a love of gardening. Read our full review.
  4. All New Square Foot GardeningAll New Square Foot Gardening. If your fellow gardener does not already have a copy of this revolutionary book on gardening, do him a favor and get him one. Even those committed to traditional row gardening can pick up many useful tips for making the garden more productive and attractive. Read our full review.
  5. Oxo Good Grips trowel. Every gardener needs a trowel. If the trowel has a comfortable handle, a sharp stainless-steel blade, and handy measuring marks, so much the better.
  6. Rodale’s Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening. Another classic work on gardening that deserves a place on every gardener’s bookshelf. This one is an indispensable reference for those who garden naturally. Read our full review.
  7. Luster Leaf Rapitest Soil Test KitLuster Leaf Rapitest Soil Test Kit. Does your gardening friend know how to test his soil for pH and NPK? If not, this kit will make it easy for him. Read our full review.
  8. Gardening gloves. Even a gardener who already has a pair probably won’t mind an extra pair.
  9. Seed packets. This is another good choice for an heirloom gardener. These seed packets seal to protect their contents, and they can be used with a home inkjet or laser printer.
  10. Sweet potato beetle. This hilarious craft is a great way to use that overgrown sweet potato! Warning: The laughter will be heard for miles around!
Merry Christmas 2016

Merry Christmas 2016

Merry Christmas 2016It’s already that time of year again—time to celebrate the birth of Christ and enjoy the company of our family members!

Cold weather and snow mean that it is also time to find a cozy seat and catch up on some research and reading. Please enjoy this year’s lineup of our best content.

We’re looking forward to serving you again in 2017. Merry Christmas! Read More

5 Gifts for Birdwatchers
The Sunflower State

5 Gifts for Birdwatchers

5 Gifts for BirdwatchersIs there a special birdwatcher in your life? You know, that person who never travels without binoculars and who remembers a location by that rare bird he added to his life list while visiting?

Here are a few ways to bring a smile to his face this Christmas:

  1. The Backyard Bird Feeder's BibleBackyard Bird Feeder’s Bible: Every birdwatcher needs a copy of this handy guide to species, seeds, flowers, and more. From DIY projects to landscaping tips to identification helps, just about everything a birdwatcher could want to know is included. If they don’t have one yet, by all means, complete their library! Read our full review.
  2. Field guide: If your birdwatching friend or youngster is just starting out, give him a copy of the Peterson guide for either eastern or western North America. More seasoned birders probably already have a field guide they rely on; supplement their collection with a guide specific to their state. Try The Guide to Kansas Birds and Birding Hot Spots, or search Amazon for guides for other states. Read our reviews for the Peterson guides and The Guide to Kansas Birds.
  3. Squirrel-proof feeder: A good squirrel-proof feeder can do more than just keep squirrels at bay. It is sturdy enough to last for years, and it may even lock out undesirable birds like crows and blue jays. This excellent hopper-style model holds quite a bit of birdseed, and can be either hung or mounted on a pole.
  4. All-Weather Birder's JournalBirder’s journal: This may be the best journal your birdwatching friend has ever tried. Compact size, waterproof cover, sturdy paper—what more could an all-weather birder want? Read our full review.
  5. Complete Book of Birdhouse Construction: Do you know a birdwatcher who is also handy in the shop? This little book may give him a few ideas on how to tailor his projects to his favorite birds. Read our full review.
Get Ready for December 2016
The Lifestyle

Get Ready for December 2016

Get Ready for December 2016Christmas will be here before you know it! Prepare tasty treats and heartfelt gifts from your own homegrown offerings, and snuggle up on the couch for a little storytelling.

  1. Retell the story of Sod Corn Jones.
  2. Read Scripture passages about the meaning of Christmas.
  3. Make a sweet potato beetle.
  4. Encourage your child to start an EcoJournal.
  5. Give a weather diary this Christmas.
  6. Create homemade gifts from the heart.
  7. Cook up some stovetop apples.
  8. Put a sweet potato casserole on the table.
  9. Visit the Christmas City of the High Plains.
  10. Check out our favorite posts from 2013, 2014, and 2015.
Merry Christmas 2015

Merry Christmas 2015

Merry Christmas 2015Christmas is here again, and another year has come and gone already!

Thank you for taking the time to browse the information and resources we dug up this year.  We’re already looking forward to getting back into things next year with fresh posts, resources, quotes, and more.

Looking for a little bit of reading over the holidays?  Winter is a great time to research and plan for a new year!  How about perusing some of our favorite additions to the site from 2015?

Merry Christmas!


Best of 2015


Published By Homestead on the Range

The Family Garden JournalThe Family Garden Journal




A New Year’s ChallengeA New Year's Challenge


The Seal of KansasThe Seal of Kansas


The Overland Navigation CompanyThe Overland Navigation Company


The Power of HumusThe Power of Humus


Rattlesnake or Kingsnake?Rattlesnake or Kingsnake?


How Glyphosate-Resistant Crops WorkHow Glyphosate-Resistant Crops Work


The Story of the Stetson HatThe Story of the Stetson Hat




Top 10 Bluegrass Songs You Should KnowTop 10 Bluegrass Songs You Should Know


What Makes Some Cucumbers Bitter?What Makes Some Cucumbers Bitter?






Big Predators Return to KansasBig Predators Return to Kansas: Mountain Lions


The Four Kansas ConstitutionsThe Four Kansas Constitutions: Topeka


Kansas State ParksKansas State Parks


The Breeding ToolboxThe Breeding Toolbox: Introduction






Historical Atlas of KansasHistorical Atlas of Kansas


Waterers and Watering SystemsWaterers and Watering Systems


All New Square Foot Gardening CookbookAll New Square Foot Gardening Cookbook


Free LSU Building PlansFree LSU Building Plans


U.S. Drought Monitor

United States Drought Monitor


Rodale’s Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic GardeningRodale's Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening


The Cross Centered LifeThe Cross Centered Life


Storey's Illustrated Guide to 96 Horse Breeds of North AmericaStorey’s Illustrated Guide to 96 Horse Breeds of North America


Loving God With All Your MindLoving God With All Your Mind






5 Things Every Beginning Charcoal Artist Needs5 Things Every Beginning Charcoal Artist Needs




Gator CasesGator Cases


General’s Pastel Chalk PencilsGeneral's Pastel Chalk Pencils




Two Bees on a Tall ThistleTwo Bees on a Tall Thistle


Johnson Grass

Johnson Grass in Bloom


Toad BugToad Bug


Dam at Fall River State ParkDam at Fall River State Park


Amelia Earhart StatueAmelia Earhart Statue




HappinessQuote of the Week: Happiness


The Fight in the DogQuote of the Week: The Fight in the Dog


The PastQuote of the Week: The Past


InsanityQuote of the Week: Insanity


Ignoring the ClimateQuote of the Week: Ignoring the Climate


They Can’t Get AwayQuote of the Week: They Can't Get Away


The Shoulders of GiantsQuote of the Week: The Shoulders of Giants


OpportunityQuote of the Week: Opportunity


HorsesQuote of the Week: Horses


A Genuine KansanQuote of the Week: A Genuine Kansan


5 Homemade Gifts from the Farm
The Skills

5 Homemade Gifts From the Farm

5 Homemade Gifts from the FarmThere’s nothing like a homemade gift to warm someone’s heart at Christmas.  The time and love put into a handcrafted present make it special.

If you enjoy country living, you have an excellent opportunity to make and grow gifts that will touch others.  Need some inspiration?  Consider these ideas:

  1. Heirloom seeds.  If you raise and save seeds from heirloom plants, why not share that favorite variety with a gardening relative?
  2. Live plants.  Some of your family members might enjoy a sample of a perennial plant to grow.  Perhaps you can share a productive and hardy variety of berry, or maybe an herb in a pot.
  3. Herbal concoctions.  Many people have an interest in herbs, even if they don’t necessarily grow them.  Delight someone this Christmas with dried herbs for cooking or making tea.
  4. Kitchen treats.  Are you good at baking homemade bread?  Is your jelly a favorite?  Share some of that down-home goodness with friends and family this year.
  5. Country crafts.  Put your skills to work creating something for that special someone.  Build a birdhouse; knit a scarf; paint a rural scene.  The sky is the limit!


Helpful Resources

Stocking Up
Consider some of these ways to share your produce this Christmas.  Read our full review.

Kids Knitting
Children will enjoy making these projects as much as friends and family will enjoy receiving them!  Read our full review.

Looking for something useful to build?  This book might provide some inspiration.  Read our full review.

Homemade Cards
Don’t buy a card this Christmas—make one!  Read our full review.