Articles By: Shana Thornhill

We survived the state fair

It’s that time of year again. The corn is getting dry, the nights are cooler, and suddenly the days are an hour shorter than they were last week. The kids are settling back into their school routine, and the chickens are finishing up their fall molt. It’s slipping toward fall. And, as always, fall is fair season. The county fairs […]

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Beard becomes a growing issue

Very little can truly prepare a parent for hearing some of the things that come out of their children’s mouths. No matter how many times you’ve read “Kids Say the Darndest Things,” believe me, your offspring will come up with something better. I spent the first half of my children’s lives petrified that they would loudly say something inappropriate about […]

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Cats, screen doors don’t mix

Well, you learn something new every day (and if you don’t, you probably should). Today’s tidbit has to do with who invented the screen door. Such a simple thing, an almost unseen presence as you breeze in or out, turns out to be a fairly contested item. Some will insist that Hannah Harger of Man­chester, Iowa, obtained the first patent […]

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Chicken move takes a family

Humans as a species seem to be extremely interested in the movements of other species. We are captivated by stories of the swallows returning to San Juan Capistrano, or how the fragile monarch butterfly somehow seems to make it all the way to Mexico to reproduce. The nightly peregrinations of a bat colony in Texas draw thousands of tourists, as […]

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Good times in New Orleans

Some of you might know the old Duke Ellington tune “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore.” Little did I think that the title applied to me. I mean, I get out. I go to McPherson for errands, I’m in Hillsboro several times a week, and sometimes we even get to Wichita for special occasions. I’m no stranger to larger metropolitan environments, […]

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Double-digit ‘blowout’ party

When you talk about parties, you’d usually associate the term “blowout” with a full-on, adult bash. You know the type—loud music, adult beverages, the whole shebang. It’s not usually something you’d associate with a 10-year-old’s birthday party, but that’s what we had. To be honest, if you’d have asked me 15 years ago if I’d even have kids, let alone […]

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Farm living grows new ?sense?

Most people understand the idea of common sense. After all, cause-and-effect is a pretty basic concept. If you put your hand on a hot stove, it?s going to get burned. While some things are obvious, sometimes it takes living on a farm to teach you some exciting new ones. And, me being me, I?ve learned them the hard way. I?ve […]

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Our chickens aren?t pampered

It isn?t easy being a chicken. Especially one of my chickens. I?m really glad they can?t read about those pet chickens that are so popular now. You know, the ones who have heated coops with padded perches, get daily gourmet meals prepared by a chef, and whose owners actually believe that chicken sweaters are a cute and useful item. Some […]

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Chickens face challenges, too

It ain?t easy being a chicken. Especially one of my chickens. I?m really glad they can?t read about those pet chickens that are so popular now. You know, the ones who have heated coops with padded perches, get daily gourmet meals prepared by a chef, and whose owners actually believe that chicken sweaters are a cute and useful item. Some […]

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In this rough world, don?t forget the good

I find myself having some trouble getting into the Christmas mood this year. Somehow it just seems wrong to sing ?White Christmas? or ?Let It Snow? ?or most Christmas songs, for that matter?when you?re walking around in short sleeves and soaking up sunlight. As a kid, it always seemed that Christmas was the bright snowy time that one looked forward […]

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