Ankle High and Knee Deep: Women Reflect on Western Rural Life

Ankle High and Knee Deep: Women Reflect on Western Rural Life

by Gail L. Jenner

Paperback(First Edition)

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Colicky horses, trucks high-centered in pastures, late nights spent in barns birthing calves—the trials and tribulations of farm and ranch life are as central to its experience as amber waves of grain and Sunday dinners at the ranch house. Ankle High and Knee Deep collects together essays about lessons learned by ranch women, cowgirls, and farmers about what they've learned while standing in or stepping out of "mud, manure, and other offal" in their day to day lives on the land. This collection of entertaining and inspirational voices offers unique perspectives on relationships, loss, love, marriage, and parenting and other universal issues. These are contemporary accounts of women struggling to keep a lifestyle intact, recollections of childhoods spent in open spaces, and tales of overcoming obstacles—inspirational reading for city dwellers and country folk, alike.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780762792115
Publisher: TwoDot
Publication date: 06/03/2014
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Gail L. Jenner is a former secondary history and English teacher and is married to a fourth-generation cattle rancher in the mountains of Northern California. She and her husband live on the 150 year old, original homestead. She has spent 40 years working with her husband, while maintaining a large garden, working outside the home, raising children, chickens, and cooking for family and hired help, and now writing full-time.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi

Introduction vii


Of Mud and Earth Carol Pitts Maplesden 3

In the Garden Elaine McMurry-Kuck 6

Retirement of the Windmill Lori Van Pelt 9

Using Tools Backward Amy Hale Auker 12

Rock Work Andrea M. Jones 18

War on the Farm Peggy Sanders 23

Continuing Traditions in a Changing World Rhonda Sedgwick Stearns 25

Civilization Lin Marshall Brummels 29

The Melien Place Jane Ambrose Morton 33

The Artesian Well-in Richardton, North Dakota Sister Olivia (Loretta) Forster, O.S.B 36

You Reap What You Sow Madeleine DeAndreis-Ayres 40

Provenance Patricia Frolander 43

Horse Sense

Bugsy Mary B. Kurtz 46

She Took a Hornet Ride on a Borrowed Horse Cindy Grain Newman 50

Daddy's Saddle Trinity Lewis 53

Daddy's Girl Mary B. Kurtz 55

Daisy's Foal Tony Rhonda Sedgwick Stearns 58

Home on the (Small) Range Andrea M. Jones 61

Snoopy and Reebok, the Therapists Lauren Sweezey 64

Misty Judee E. Jensen 71

Ride'em, Cowgirl! Cyd Farnam Krouse 79


Finding God in the Chicken Coop Pat Custer 83

Hooves 'n Feathers Shari L. Fiock 85

Annie's Baby Donna Sellwood 89

Tom Turkey Marlene Starrh Martin 92

Birth Gail L. Jenner 94

The Streets of Bakersfield Sherrie Gant 98

The Day Curly Came Home Brenda Towne 101

Hank Jr. Donna Sellwood 104

Things That Go Bump in the Night Karen Mihaljevich 106

Skunks, Civet Cats, and Company Lynne B. Bryan 109

Ugly Mud Bugs Amy Hale Auker 111

Temptation Delia Evans 115

Why Liberals Shouldn't Own Chickens Madeleine DeAndreis-Ayres 117


The Outpost Judy Ann Ahmann 122

A South Dakota. Hour Chastity Julson 125

Serpentine Trail Sherrie Gant 130

All in a Winter's Day Carol Pitts Maplesden 134

An Actual Account of an Overworked, Underpaid Fence Painter Katlyn Rumbold 138

It's the Water D. H. Eraldi 141

The Boy Scout Way Judy Ann Ahmann 144

Mom Thought She Married a Teacher Jane Ambrose Morton 146

Oh, What a Day! Dona Farnam 149

Universal Language Gail L. Jenner 152

Sheep Wagon Saga Lee Ann Siebken 154

The Tooth Fairy Dona Farnam 157


We Rode in Trucks Stacy Hadrick 161

Crock Full of Memories Delia Evans 165

Bottom of the Canyon Vella Munn 168

Childhood Camping Sherma Isbell 173

Childhood Interrupted Cyd Farnam Krouse 176

Mom Was a Beekeeper Laurel Hill-Ward 180

Balance Deb Carpenter-Nolting 182

Summer at Aunt Ruth's Marilyn R. Kilpatrick 185

My Dad's Hands Patricia M. Laustalot 189


Contemplating the Fire Seasons Andrea M. Jones 192

Watching My Hills Delia Evans 195

Pasture Fires Lori Van Pelt 199

Rain Is Always a Promise Gail L. Jenner 203

Smith Canyon Fire 1994 Terri Earl 205

That Fickle Fall Marcia Hensley 212


The Best Words Chastity Julson 217

Ranch Wisdom Jane Kirkpatrick 222

Doing Is What Comes Naturally Gail L. Jenner 225

Ten Country Concocted Lessons Trinity Lewis 228

It Won't Wash Off Lyn Messersmith 232

Riding the Edge of Good-bye Patricia Frolander 235

Contributing Authors and Photographers 237

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