Contact Me

My family trying to contact aliens during the Annular Eclipse. See, if nearby aliens had a website and were as easy to contact as me, we wouldn’t have had to do this.

Isn’t it amazing in this day and time that you can simply type a message into a computer and within seconds (or less?) I’ll receive it?  No saddling up the horse to take you into town to send a telegraph or telegram, no driving to the post office to buy stamps, no stuffing a message into a bottle and throwing it into the sea and hoping for the best.

That noted:  I’d be happy to hear from you, and if you’d rather send me an e-mail than make a public comment in the “comments” section, my e-mail address is:  [email protected].  (I set up that address when I started teaching drama, and only had five kiddos. . . I haven’t gotten around to changing it, even though I gave birth to little Mack over six years ago and so it should be dramamamaSIX. . . he hasn’t caught on yet, either, so I may have a bit more of a grace period yet.)

132 thoughts on “Contact Me

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Yes! Yes! Yes! Thank you, Chef William. I’m glad I found you through the UBC. My readers are all crazed foodies (from what I can tell) and I’m sure they’d enjoy reading a guest post from you. Send it on!

  1. Veronica (Roni)

    Hey Amy…
    Last week I was generously nominated for an award! What a gorgeous thing!
    This week I nominated you….well done for your fabulous work, & thanks always for your ongoing support :))
    cheers Roni xx

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      What a sweet thing to do! Thanks so much for nominating me and I’ll get to work on my “11 things.” It is a “gorgeous thing” to be nominated! <3

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      No problem, Chef!! No hurry–there’s still plenty of April left, I think, last I checked. Whenever you finish it is fine with me. I hope you have an enjoyable settling back in to home in WI!

  2. kathy

    hi, maybe you can help me out. ive had chickens for 10 months. our town decided to incorporate us and we had to get them fast before they did that or we couldn’t have them. ive been learning as we go. our coop is not big but big enough for the 4 chickens. we tried a heat lamp last year but it was way to big and we couldn’t find any small ones. so im hoping this year they can make it without it. biggest problem for winter is keeping water from freezing. all the warmers are to big for the coop. dog bowls go on the ground and don’t work. chickens knock them all over. any ideas? its already freezing and winter isn’t really here yet. thanks for any help you can give

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Kathy, I use a heated bucket when the weather gets really cold. If you go back to the Prairie Homestead post, you’ll see my recommendation there. And as far as the heat bulb goes . . .have you tried just a 60-watt (or so?) bulb? That might provide just enough heat when it gets extremely cold out.

  3. Diana

    A chicken adopted us. She flew over our fence. After the third day, I bought food (cracked corn and scratch grains). What are good resources (in addition to for a novice?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Lucky you, Diana! There are just lots and lots of chicken resources online, and I especially like all the content at Backyard Chickens You can join the site for free and have access to tons of forums and all kinds of fun stuff! Good luck with your chicken (I’m assuming she’s a hen?) and have fun!

  4. Kamee

    I just found you! I have a question for you that I hope you can help with. I live in central California and I just got 2-16 week Olive Eggers. They came from a wonderful farm about an hour south of me. Our temps are usually in the 60’s during the day and get to the 20’s in the night (sometimes down to the teens). The two girls laid the first two days they were here and now they have not laid again 🙁 I thought it was because the day length changed right when they got here so I went and got a light and they get between 14-17 hours of light a day. They are very happy and roam around the yard during the day. I have meal worm treats for them and oyster shell in their yard for calcium. I am new to chickens and now I have no idea what else to do to get them to lay again. Have I ruined them? Any advice or direction to good references would be much appreciated.

    Thank you and happy New Year!!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I’m glad you found me! I very much doubt that you have “ruined” your hens! It sounds like you’re doing everything right! I would guess that the transition to your place, especially if they had a few days without adequate light, prompted them to go into a molt. Or maybe they are just taking a few days off! From my experience, Araucanas or Olive Eggers, are good layers but don’t feel the need to lay every stinkin’ day, like Leghorns or some of the more productive laying hens. I always keep a handful of them myself, because I love them and I love the green and blue eggs! Here are a few suggestions to get them laying again: I’d say to keep doing what you’re doing–check the lightbulb every day to make sure it hasn’t gone out–keep it on a timer so they’ll get up very early every morning–scatter corn or grain in their coop at night, so when they get up they will be active, first thing–and keep fresh water available day and night–and I’ll bet they will be laying again very soon! Let me know, okay?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thanks so much for leaving a comment, even when my comments on that post weren’t working! Want a frittata? Come on over, girl!

  5. Cheryl

    I have really enjoyed your blog. Lynae pointed me to it. The one about cleaning the chicken house made me laugh. I sure don’t remember any of the pleasant words you described the chore as being. “Done” was like heavenly music in those days. Sorry the deer chose your vehicle to try riding or jumping! I am so thankful the burb was the only thing out of order. I have had many dealings with the memories attached to “stuff”. Each time I try to remember to thank God for those memories. Keep up the good work! You were always so talented! I am enjoying the little glimpses into your life! Love, Cheryl

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I am so happy to hear from you! You realize that coming out to your place–to ride your old horse, or to pick up eggs from the chickens, or to just wander around on the farm–was like a dream for me. I’ve always loved the country life, and still do. Thank you for your kind words!

  6. Lisa

    Thanks for producing such a great blog! I’ve just spent over an hour reading it and I really enjoy it. I have a flock of 10 chickens (including one rooster) and am fairly new to the whole thing, so it was great to pick up a few tips from you. Thank you!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I’ve never bought feed from a website, because the shipping would make it so expensive. I buy a good 18% or even 16% protein feed from the local feed store, and then augment that with plenty of free-ranging (they are going to pick up far more nutrients from grass and weeds and bugs than from a bag of feed) and organic grains from a grain store near us. I sprout the grains, too. I don’t have to buy much feed in the summertime, because there are always so many other food sources in the summertime!

  7. Marilyn Schepers

    Enjoyed reading about the cabbage worms. I have battled these pests for decades. I mostly just pick the worms.. Used to use bt. These days I also net the moths with a hand net and then feed them to my two chickens as a treat. They come running for them. We can only have two chickens in Lincoln.

    Where do you live? I am very interested in setting up some bee hives.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Those cabbage worms are still giving me fits this year, and I like your idea about the hand net! I think my 8yo son Malachi would probably really enjoy that job! We’re not far from Lincoln, as a matter of fact! We had bee hives, even when we lived in town. Did you see my post on The Prairie Homestead about setting up your own bee hives? It’s a good time of year to start thinking and planning for next year:

  8. Sue MacCallum

    Hi Amy! This is to thank you for your ginger candy recipe. Thank God I found you, and I mean that literally, as I too am a Christian with no idea how I’d enjoy anything in life without Jesus Christ, my savior, healer and friend! I have almost constant nausea which hasn’t been helped by medication, so for the past few months I’ve become obsessed with the study of ginger. I’ve found many sites, YouTube videos and blogs, but they give differing and confusing information. I’ve been eating ginger paste from a jar, chewing ginger root raw, drinking ginger tea, and have tried making candy. I’m having a particularly sick and sad day, and I believe I’ve just ruined the only ginger I have by cooking it incorrectly, so I Googled again and for the first time your site came up! I know God led me to you, not just because you’re a Christian, but because your kindness shines through in your discussions with people! We also share similar interests, like our kids and grandbabies, God’s creatures of all kinds, the outdoors and piano-playing. Yours is also the only blog I’ve found on the subject of ginger which is currently active, and I really feel like I need someone to talk to! If you just do recipes, rather than giving other information, please let me know. I know how busy you are with your family, other interests and many talents. I have a lot of questions concerning things like method and length of storage of ginger root, both raw and cooked, how much is safe to eat per day, and whether it works better before or after eating. Many people like you say they eat a “lot” of ginger, but I’ve also read that too much can actually cause nausea. Unfortunately, I’ve only found one actual specification of “too much”, which says 6 grams per day in any form. This brings me to the question of measurement conversions (for instance, grams of raw root to teaspoons of paste to number of pieces of candy). I assume I need to buy a small scale. I had one for measuring salad greens for our guinea pig, but I couldn’t look at it after she died so I threw it out (pathetic, I know!). May I ask you a few specific questions, one at a time of course? Also, if I should ask you my questions directly to your email, I’d be happy to do that too. I’ve never been part of a blog discussion before and I tend to be long-winded, and I don’t want to be annoying! Feel free to contact me at my email if you think my questions aren’t appropriate for the group. You guys are all into so many other fascinating things, and I don’t want to interrupt those discussions. You can also pass along my email to a friend if you’d rather. I can tell you value private information, but if you trust someone with a confidential email, I do too. Thank you in advance, and God bless you and your family, both two and four-legged! I’ll be praying for all of you.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Hi Sue! If you don’t mind sharing your email address with me, I’d be happy to entertain your questions through email, as I have time. I don’t know if I have much specific information concerning ginger, though. I’m sorry about your nausea, that sounds like a real trial. I’ll be praying for you, and I’ll watch for your email address.

  9. Heather

    Thank you for your article on chicken laying. I am a novice chicken farmer and have made it through a second year with 10 chickens. But now that I am only getting about 3 eggs a day it is time to cull the herd. However, now that it is getting close to molting time I was wondering if the same techniques still apply as I have a few chickens that are quite featherless. I don’t want to butcher any that simply aren’t laying because they are molting or getting ready to, but I don’t want to winter any that aren’t. Thanks again for your informative article I think it was much more doable than my husbands idea of locking them all in separate cages 🙂

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Are your hens featherless because they are molting, or are they featherless because they are at the bottom of the pecking order?

  10. Heather

    Well they typically all have feathers. Until recently 4 of them are now featherless on their necks and backs. I won’t rule out that they are low on the pecking order but I don’t see much squabbling then usual.

  11. MMrFixit

    We have a problem with our flock. Many birds are getting the right eye closed and oozing clear liquid. They are losing weight and dying daily.
    We have given them tetracycline and de-wormed. Still losing 2 or 3 birds a night. I found 3 of them with a cough outside the coop huddled in a small shelter. I am sure they are dead this morning but I left them there to isolate them from the rest.
    We are losing gorgeous valuable birds every day.
    Any ideas what they may have and how to treat them?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I’m so sorry that you are having this problem in your flock! It must be so painful to have your hens dying at that rate. Here’s a website with a list of common chicken diseases:
      From the info you mentioned, it sounds like Infectious Bronchitis to me. If you catch it early enough, you can vaccinate your hens against it. You might want to call your local vet and ask if he/she has any knowledge of something like that going around. Good luck!!

  12. Corina

    Hi Amy,
    We “met” (ha!) at Ben Hewitt’s blog. Was it you that did the survey about my blog via my website? The survey is anonymous, so I can’t tell, but you did mention Ben, so I assume it’s you!
    I checked out your website and love it. We should stay in touch!
    In the meantime, I would love to send you a bar of my goat milk soap as a thanks for filling out my survey!
    Would you mind contacting me with your address?
    Nice to “meet” you!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I have been on your website and I loved it! I’m not sure if it was me that filled out the survey that you mentioned, but I’m pretty sure I did fill one out. I’d love a bar of goat milk soap! I’ll email you my address. (I was the Amy who said in Ben’s comments, “Corina, we MUST be friends!”)
      Thank you!

  13. Barbara

    Hi, I am being plagued by deer and really appreciate your deer fencing instructions (and tales). Just about to try it.

    There is one thing: I hope you can alert people to be sure to collect any broken or torn down fishing line and dispose of it safely away from wildlife. I’ve seen birds hanging from a tree branch until they died, having caught the line around their feet. Other animals are vulnerable too.


    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thanks Barbara. The next time I get into that post, I’ll make an addition. THat is a very good point. At lakes in our area, I’ve seen wildlife (including a live snake!) unfortunately tangled up in a wad of fishline. Very unfortunate.

  14. Christine Silva

    Hey there, I so appreciate your help with pictures on how to find the chickens that are laying or not. I am a little puzzled though all my hens had a spacing between pelvis bone of 2 fingers and all vents seemed wet and large except a few older hens theres was large and crusty? still 2 fingers. Also I just found mites on some of them so I powdered them. How often should I do this? Id appreciate any input you might have. Thank you

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I appreciate your efforts! First, about the dusting: you’ll need to dust again in 10 to 14 days, since the dust kills the mites, but not the eggs. And about the vent size: what I would reckon is that you’ve got a number of hens (perhaps older ones?) that are all laying, but only very seldom, maybe an egg or two a week? Does that sound accurate? If the hens are not laying at all, there is a very different look and feel to the vent area. As far as the crustiness—do your hens have access to dust, for dust baths?

  15. Heather

    I’ve tried to find the answer to this question online, with no luck, so I thought I would throw it out here in hopes that you could point me in the right direction. I started tons of peppers and tomatoes inside this year. This last week, I went to bed them out, and noticed that the root structures were barely developed. I planted them out, hoping for the best, but it looks like I will have to supplement with plants from a local nursery. I started them soil blocks, made with a soil recipe off of the soil blocker website. I tried to keep them moist. Do you have any idea what I might be doing wrong?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I’m sorry about your plants! Shooting off the cuff here, I’d say that your soil blocks and not enough moisture are to blame for your disappointing roots. I’ve never used the soil blocks, but I’d imagine that they can get pretty compacted? Was that your experience? And if you didn’t actually soak them regularly (just giving them a sip or water, or a small drink) they may have stay compacted. But you may still have healthy strong plants–plant the tomato plants deeper than you usually would, and the stems will develop roots. The pepper plants may still be okay, too, because they grow so slowly and don’t develop that great of root system even in pots. Good luck! I’d like to hear how they all come out, after all!

  16. jennifer

    Hey Amy,
    I’m so glad to have found your website! I am a mother of two. My daughter is 15 and my son is 10. I have a wonderful husband, who still has to work a full time job in Atlanta (he’d much rather be home with us but it pays for stuff- necessities). We have about 10 acres in Georgia and we are trying homesteading as well. We are always hopeful to make it a business someday. I was very encouraged to read all about you and your farm. I’m going into my fourth year homeschooling my two and my second year managing a farm too!! I really love it but, sometimes feel discouraged. I have a wonderful homeschool community around me but (pause), there is my family. They struggle to fully understand what my husband I are doing. I have learned to tune them out but, how can I make the rhythm of farming and homeschooling flow more and help my children understand why we chose to do this in the first place! Any advice?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Oh, Jennifer. My heart reaches out to you. What you are doing is a very difficult, but (hopefully!) very rewarding thing. I could write a book of advice to you. In a nutshell: 1. Surround yourself with people who either are doing what you are doing (if you can find them–they are probably too busy for much socializing, honestly!) or at least support your efforts. 2. Read websites and books on what you want to do. (Ben Hewitt’s website is really awesome, for one: 3. Don’t try to do too much at once. Take your homesteading one or two steps at a time. Do what you can do well, and then (if possible) hire help. 4. Remember every day that you only have your kiddos at home with you for a few years, honestly, it goes so fast. Don’t forget to make it a priority to teach them and make memories with them. You’ll have real regrets if you work the farm 24/7 and lose touch with your kids. 5. Have fun every day (easy enough if you have kiddos at home!) otherwise–what’s the point of working so hard? 6. Lots of folks are doing what you are trying to do: it can be done! Take it a day at a time and embrace the adventure!!

  17. Richard Parks

    Hi Amy,

    I’ve just stumbled across your blog and, being quite an avid fan of Tolkien, immediately bought your halfling recipe book.

    I live in a country town called Wagga Wagga in Australia so that’s how far your reach and influence now extends 🙂 we really do live in a small world these days.

    All the best!


    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Richard, what do you know?! Welcome to my world, and thank you for your note and for buying our recipe book. I’ve never met anybody from Wagga Wagga before . . . now I’ve got to check it out and see where it’s located.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Because of predator pressure in our parts, we built our coop with a cement floor. However. If I could do it over, I would definitely leave the floor dirt, with the protection of sturdy mesh wire trenched in all around the coop, to deter burrowing predators. In fact, when I heap the deep litter into my coop in the fall (I just dumped two big bags of leaves in there yesterday!) sometimes I’ll also add a bucket or two of dirt, just so the chickens have access to the critters in the dirt. They love it!

  18. Sandi Dudley

    You know I end up jealous (in a good way) when I read about people who live in the country. I have decided to try to find a place I can rent & maybe barter some services so I can raise the livestock I’d like to raise. I grew up on a farm and miss it. I’m glad to have come across your site. Have a good day.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Sandi, take courage—I used to be where you are right now. I used to put my kids in a stroller and walk around the section, in the country, when we lived in town because I longed to live in the country so badly. Bryan and I didn’t move our family out here until we were in our forties. I’ve never looked book. I love living in the country, and all the things you can raise and all the stuff you can grow in you have a few acres. Be patient. It’ll happen if you really want it badly enough. 🙂

  19. Barbara Jean Hubel

    Hi, Amy!

    I have a banti chicken that we got a year ago. She is probably a year and a half old. She incorporated well into our coop with Rhode Island Reds and Golden Wyandotte.

    The strange thing is that she does not perch with the other hens. She is happy to sleep unperched in a corner. My son built a “handicap ramp” for her to reach the perch. She used it, but only stood at the top of the ramp and pooped on it all night. Then we lowered the perch and took the ramp away. No luck. She is still on the floor.

    We have never had banti chickens before, and see that she has about seven toes! I have read that banti chickens are supposed to be able to fly high and even perch in rafters. Not this girl. Our perch is a 2X4.

    Any insight as to why she won’t perch with her friends?


    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Barbara, Gosh, you got me! Although if there’s one thing I’ve learned from keeping chickens–is that they are all individuals with their own quirks and preferences. Your little sweetie may have a sore toe, or maybe is a bit intimidated by the bigger chickens, or maybe is just introverted. Maybe her plethora of toes has something to do with it? I can tell you this–if you had another bantam for her to cuddle with, she’d probably do it. Where do you live? I have 3 adorable bantam roosters that I’m looking for a home for. I’d give you one! Seriously!! 🙂

    2. dramamamafive Post author

      Oh, and Barbara, a 2×4 may be too thick for her to hang onto comfortably. Any chance you could put up something narrower–like the circumference of a broom handle, say?

  20. Clara Lawrence

    Hello. My name is Clara Lawrence. My address is 32057 Zimmerman Rd Albany, Ohio 45710
    You may think this message a little odd but I have been a Christian since 1974. I feel impressed and have an urgency to build a Walapini underground Growing area on my property. times are changing and I fear food shortages are going to come to reality in this country. I will be able to share grown food with friends a relatives and neighbors. I have a garden but I needed something that I can grow in all year long. We are going this route. I help folks now but When the garden is done in Ohio it is done. this way I can produce all year long. I would appreciate a few of all the seed you have. I will gladly pay you for them if you like. thank you so much. if you can hel that would be great, if not that is ok. god Bless you for sharing with the folks on your site. I think this is great!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      I’d be happy to share seeds! Good luck with your underground growing space. I’d love to learn more about it, see pictures, etc.

  21. Suzanne Grimes

    Hi, Amy-What fun! May you fulfill this resolution! My favorite book is Jane Eyre, so when I saw “The Professor” on your list, I clicked on it and found out it is free on Kindle. It will now be added to my list to read…eventually;-D. Right now I am reading two books simultaneously- I don’t usually do this, but I’m trying to read one by Lynn Austen and get it done in time to share with my Mom when I go see her next. The other is one I recently found out was my sister’s favorite, The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy. I trust that sis knows a good book and figured I’d better give it a read. I do have to look up lots of the “old words”, but it is really good! Anyways, sorry I blathered on, and enjoy your books!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Looking up the new words, Suzanne, is such an excellent thing to do for your vocabulary and your brain! I listened to “The Mayor of Casterbridge” last summer, a couple of times through, while doing gardening tasks. I really liked it! And I absolutely “Jane Eyre.” Since high school, it has been one of my very favorite books. I recently listened to it on my MP3 player, too, twice through (I have a lot of listening time in the summer, while I’m gardening and harvesting and so on) and fell in love with the pitiable Mr. Rochester all over again. Please feel free to pin your own books-to-read onto my Pinterest board:

  22. Ron Hall

    Hi I tried to buy your Halfling’s Pantry cookbook but it didn’t like my card info (which was correct). Could it be that it is because I’m in Canada?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Hi there Ron, I am really sorry about that! Let me do some checking and get back to you on that. I’ll ask Gumroad (that’s the website that sells my ebooks for me) about it.

  23. Beth Hamburger

    How much peat moss should I buy to plant two blueberry bushes? I am from South Dakota and want to try growing blueberries. I came across you site and you encouaged me to give it a go. One plant arrived yesterday and another is on its way.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Hey Martin! I think we used 5 1/2′ posts, simply because we already had them. All things considered, if I were to put up another fence, I’d use 6′ posts. Those deer can jump!

  24. gina arns

    Hi great info on your website. I have a question. new to chickens,,,,,,we have an awesome coop with enclosed area for sleeping and chickens can go up and down. They go up about 8pm roost and then down in the morning, I usually go and open up their enclosure which is about 10×8 and let them free range we have about 3 acres. I have 6 chickens (not sure yet which are hens) ,,,,but I have some nesting boxes inside of enclosed area. But they seem to love hangin out along the tree line. I want them to lay in boxes not in yard. they are only 3 months old but how can I assure that they will not be laying in bushes and conveniently lay for me in boxes, dont want to be crawling around the yard looking for eggs. Any advice??? also is there a way to tell if i have hens or roosters. Awesome site I will be following

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Gina, dear new chicken-loving friend: I’m writing a blog post on this right now, so stay tuned!
      *first of all, once the chickens get closer to maturity, you’ll be able to tell which ones are hens and which roos. Right now, while they are young you can watch them—the roos are usually more aggressive and their legs and tail feathers grow longer.
      *There are a number of things you can do to encourage hens to lay in the coop. First–make it pleasant, as I’m sure you do—with fresh bedding as needed, etc. Second–as they get closer and closer to laying age (6 or 7 months for most breeds) leave them in the coop longer in the morning. Once they start to use the boxes, then they may prefer them.
      Third–put fake eggs in the laying boxes, as a “hint!?” This does give hens the idea about where to lay them.
      Fourth—do you have a fence around the coop? I keep mine inside the fenced-in yard for much of the day–only letting them out to free-range during late afternoon and evening hours. By then, most of my hens have laid their eggs, and they all use the nesting boxes in our coop.
      Hope this is helpful! We are discussing this issue on my Facebook page, so you might want to check that out. Also, I’ll be posting a blog about it soon. Thanks Gina!

  25. April S.

    Hi there, I am writing to let you know that I really enjoy your blog. Your writing is fabulous! I happened to recently read your recipe for radish greens, but I wanted to ask if you ever cook Daikon radish greens. I was not sure since the picture you posted with the recipe was for traditional red radishes. Thanks for your response!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      April, yes, you absolutely can cook Daikon radish greens! They are especially good (in my opinion) stir-fried with garlic and olive oil, or added to soups. Happy cooking!

  26. Jen

    I am one of the, I am sure, many, many who read, enjoy and never comment! Oh, and I also learn stuff and laugh and send sympathy at times! Thank you.

  27. Lisa Q

    Hi funny lady, I was researching as it is now fall/winter, how to keep my gals laying through the winter and came across your thoughts on that. I would like to try hanging a lightbulb with a timer in my 5x6ft coop for my ten chickens. The only place for the light would be at the roof pitch in the coop so they hopefully can’t knock it down somehow. Question is, what type and wattage of lightbulb do you use as I love the idea of a little heat for them as well. I hear reptile lights are an option too. I live in Central Oregon which is high desert and very cold in winter.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      If I were you, I’d buy a hanging light with a guard, like this one: although honestly I think they are cheaper at our feed store. That is a very small coop, and your chooks put off plenty of body heat, so a 75-watt or 100-watt bulb would be plenty, probably, unless your winters are colder than ours. Is the coop well-insulated? Chickens are not as bothered by cold as everybody thinks they are. Do you use deep litter? That helps keep the chooks comfy, too, and that’s also why the guard on the light bulb is important. There are lots of choices in poultry lights, though. Let me know how it goes–and happy winterizing!

  28. Linda Conover

    I love reading your blog! I wish the give away surprise did not have to be entered through a facebook account. Thanks for sharing your stories . Linda

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      My comments are currently not working, but if you check back in a few days you could leave your comment. Also, there are other options beyond Facebook: Instagram, checking out the website of Lomah Acres, twitter, etc.

  29. Diane

    Love your blog!

    A couple things about your anniversary post/contest:

    – A place to comment is not showing up. I know I’ve commented on posts before, but there is no place coming up in this post to comment.

    – The Instagram link is not working. It comes up with a message that it can’t find the server.

    Congratulations on your blog anniversary & keep up the good work!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thanks so much for the feedback! Unfortunately I have some glitches on my blog right now, and I’m waiting for my techie son Tim to fix them for me. I’m hoping for this during the next day or two, so PLEASE check back to add your comment!

  30. Pat

    So enjoy your blog and seeing your beautiful family grow up around you as you walk through your life sharing it with all of us………..God bless you and yours…..

  31. Marvin green

    HI ms Amy I’m marvin green you may find this request fairly odd I’m a disabled veteran an me an few other veterans do a community gardens where all proceeds go into feeding the down and out that are without my address is 724 myrtle elloitt circle apartment 15
    Sault Sainte marie Michigan 49783

  32. KatherineJaneIII

    Hello Amy –

    This was my first time ever to stumble across your website, and I have been thoroughly delighted! I found myself laughing and giggling at your explanation for the name of your website, and thinking that you and I are a LOT alike! So fun!

    But after reading that wonderful post, I tried to do a little bit of “exploring” (so-to-speak), and had trouble finding more of your blogs. Finally, I resorted to doing a search for some of the items that were under the “” title – such as organic gardening, best recipes, homeschooling, and backyard chickens. I thought I could just try to click on them, but no such ability was to be had. Anyway, I searched for each one (using the search you provided in the upper right corner) and was able to find some blogs, and after reading some of them (all wonderful, too, I might add!), I thought I might just try to send this little message in hopes that a little “suggestion” might be helpful. Do you think you could make those few items into a drop-down menu or something to get a person straight to the same page that you would get if you did the search function? Now it’s just an idea, but don’t think you have to do it… I just wanted to ask.

    I really do love your writing, and will have to visit again.

    Warm regards,


    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thank you! Also: *siiiiigh*. You are absolutely right, of course. My blog has gotten so big and it needs to be organized better. Thanks for reminding me of this. IT seems a bit overwhelming to me, but I’m going to try to tackle it soon. Thanks also for your kind words. I have THE BEST READERS anywhere. Welcome!

  33. Don Shreffler

    Hi Amy, and greetings from Council Bluffs. I found a couple of items from your blog to be of extreme interest, stuff like chickens, cooking, banjo, but mostly Jesus. We could talk about all that for a month at least, but I’m feeling some leading to get back into teaching myself clawhammer and maybe even finishing the three banjos I currently have under construction. I’d be curious to find out more about your five-string journey and how you’re progressing.

    I’m in the process of preparing for our 23rd annual Christian law enforcement Retreat near Bellevue next month but afterward, if I get the brakes done on the camper, it’ll be time to get out of town, hit a campground somewhere and smell a little campfire smoke. If I can ever get a few clawhammer Gospel tunes down, I might challenge you to a dueling banjo revival.

    Thanks for your blog!


    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Don, It sounds like we have a lot in common! And you MAKE banjos. That’s awesome. Hmm. . . I have not been practicing as much as I would like, but I am planning to start a new practice challenge with Little Mack, and that ought to get both of us back into an easy daily habit of music practice! It adds such joy to our lives, but sometimes it’s easy to let it slide, in the busyness of our farm life. Thanks for connecting, and let’s keep that dueling banjo revival in that back of our minds, okay??? 🙂 🙂 🙂

      1. Don Shreffler

        Sometimes God emphasizes His point and “encourages” us by pushing on our heads a little with His thumb. Or maybe it’s just me… Anyway, I was attempting to encourage a pastor in Shenandoah a while back who is a very talented guitar player with a fine voice. The passage which came to me was a comment Paul made about not neglecting the gifts.

        That was brought back to me and for me not long ago, and I knew He was talking about the banjo, and guitar. A little pressure form God’s thumb can be very effective… the open-back banjo is now leaning against the computer desk.

        Amy, if a large farmhouse porch cries out for a little banjo in the evening or on a rainy day, how much more so a whole farm? Besides. most chickens will tell you they like it.

        Don’t neglect the gift, Ma’am : ) Let me know if you need some suggestions on tablature. Blessings!


        1. dramamamafive Post author

          Don, your comment really has struck a chord (no pun intended!). I guess I could call it a “God thing.” I have no problem (at all!) working very hard on whatever jobs I face. But to stop (before they are finished, that is, and when is housework or farming work ever finished?) and play, or just relax and enjoy gifts God has given me . . that really takes a lot of effort! But your comment is a great reminder that God didn’t put us here on earth to just work. Playing banjo and piano, for me, gives me a lot of joy. That joy, I know, is a gift from God. Thanks again for your insightful comments. I’m going to try to do better! AND I would love suggestions from you on tablature. And how to remind myself not to neglect this gift.
          Blessings, back!!

  34. Jane Deskis

    Thank you for post on figuring out who isn’t laying. I will be using it soon as we trim down the number of free loaders.

  35. Steve Bors

    I am the director of the SCC Entrepreneurship Center in Lincoln. We host a weekly coffee gathering every Thursday at 10:00 AM. I am looking for a local blogger to speak to our group about blogging and in particular, how to monetize a blog to create an income stream. I discovered your blog today and I think you would be a great speaker at our coffee! Please let me know if you have any interest.

  36. Elaine

    We are out of the same cloth. I too would rather be outside. Thank goodness for a understanding husband. Looking forward to more recipes. Thanks Elaine

  37. Pamela M Martinez

    It was a wonderful surprise to see my internet request for a Runza dipping sauce be directed to your website. I told Juan ( John) of your tip to transfer the meat mixture to a slowcooker for extra “steeping” time.
    Nonetheless, would love to hear from you two.
    Until He Comes,

  38. John

    I’m Making 100 Runzas for the Church Oktoberfest. Can I fill the dough with cooled filling and refrigerate uncooked for 3 to 4 hours, then pop in the oven and bake normally?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      John, YES! I have totally done that before. The runzas will be a little delicate uncooked, so I would put them on the pans that you plan to cook them on, rather than transfer them again. Good luck!

  39. Coty Perry

    Hey Amy!
    Love your site, alot of awesome stuff here! I was reading your post about juicing, and it hit home with me. Years ago my mom had throat cancer and was stuck to a liquid diet and juicing became a big thing for us. Just reminded me of those days when we were all juicing as a family!

    With that being said I have a complete guide to juicing for beginners,

    I wonder if this could be valuable to your readers? Let me know what you think, I would also be interested in doing a guest post if you’d like?

    Thanks for doing what you do,

  40. Wanda C Mundy

    I would LOVE to buy a copy of this book for a friend’s birthday. Would you ever consider publishing it in a hard-copy format ?!? Her daughter is a Chef, and she is a major cook – and she has several stands and methods of positioning cookbooks while reading recipes – so that they’re not so likely to get inadvertently splashed or sprinkled on.

    If not – can it be sent in a format in which the individual pages could be printed out ?!?

    I have NO experience with e-Books – although I know my friend has a Kindle, and reads novels that way, all the time. But we both prefer actual books for reading recipes and instructions for other things . . .

    Any advice or direction would be gratefully accepted . . .

    Thank you, very much . . .

  41. Kim

    Hi Amy,
    Love your blog and your kitchen :))
    Can you please tell me what you used for a pot rack? It doesn’t look like the standard pot rack you see these days, I love it and seems to hold a lot…including the cat 🙂
    Thank you.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Kim good question! That pot rack is actually a floor grate–made out of cast iron, very old and very heavy–that we found in our shed full o’junk that we inherited when we moved here. Mostly junk . . but a few treasures, including this old grate. Yup, made out of cast iron, it would probably hold all six of our cats! I would like to invest in a few more copper pots to hang on it!

  42. Kay

    Basement remodel of 2013. I’d say it’s time for an update, wouldn’t You, Gentle Blog Writer? 😉 (sans any more photos of mummified mice! *shudder*)

  43. Debbie

    Amy, can I substitute a gluten free flour blend in your recipe for Cinnamon Sticky Rolls and for the dough in your runza recipe?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Hi Debbie! To be honest, I’ve not worked much with gluten-free flours at all. If I were you, I’d just do what any great cook will do: experiment! I’d probably start with a 1 to 1 ratio, substituting one cup of the flour blend for each cup of flour, and see what happens! You are the kitchen scientist. Or you could check with the folks who wrote Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a day . . they have a website and they will answer questions. They’ve written a book on gluten-free breads, too, I believe. So, at least for the roll dough, they would be a great resource, I’d think. Good luck!!

  44. Heather

    I just had to thank you for your detailed Runza recipe I stumbled on today. I moved from Nebraska a little over 2 years ago and miss Runza dearly. I have had several people send me recipes to try and they’re oh so basic/boring. “refrigerated bread dough” …and filling comprised of hamburger, cabbage, salt and pepper? Come on, it’s more than that people! Your recipe HAS to be good. I am so excited to give it a whirl this weekend. Thank you in advance. 🙂

  45. Shirley Moore

    Hello, Amy!
    If you can’t answer this, I am afraid it may be gone forever 🙁 I cannot find my Wild Plum Rolls recipe. It is made with a biscuit dough, rolled out, sweetened, smushed pitted plums spread on, rolled up like a cinnamon roll, sliced, and placed on top of sweetened juice. Baked. Served with cream, whipped cream, or ice cream. Can you help? This was an old recipe from my mother and grand mother. A fellow NEbraskan 🙂

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Dear Shirley: I’m going to pose this question to my facebook page. You never know what we’ll learn! Wish me luck!!

  46. Michele D Yates

    Hi Amy, I am trying to shop for one of your french rolling pins but everything I click on does not lead me to an item or shopping cart! I don’t know what I am doing wrong. Please help! Thanks!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      MIchele, I’m sorry for the problems. I would ask you to try again. I just sold one this week through my shop, so it does seem to be working now. I’ve had a lot of problems with my blog, since the hacking episodes, but I think it’s all straightened out now. Please let me know if you’re still having problems, and I’ll ask my technie son Timothy to check it out.

  47. Bea

    WOW! We’re twins! Lots of pets, follower of Jesus, house is never clean because I’d MUCH rather be outside. Dust….no (I have dust bunny battalions) but if you need a tree cut down…I’m ready! I’d rather clean the coop than the house. Great information on your site. Trying to sprout fodder for the girls. Love your website name. So…up chucker clucker???? Have a blessed and beautiful day!

  48. Theresa O'Neill


    I recently made my first runzas using your recipe. I’ve had other homemade runzas, bier rocks, hamburger cabbage pockets.. yada yada.. I even have my Aunts recipe for runzas. But your recipe was exceptional. My experience with yeast has been that of a murderer.. I kill it every time. So I took your encouragement and ran with wild abandon and blind stupidity since my candy thermometer has gone missing.. and considering my crimes against all yeast products it was definitely a shot in the air if I’d kill those little buggers again.

    Of course living in Shelton, NE the need for Runzas on Husker Gameday was overwhelming. SO off i prepped and cried and took shots of Fireball Whiskey to get sandwiches done in time for Kickoff at 630 pm (Wisconsin game.. ending was sad, but food was great).

    I started off with the filling and loved how well it all was in the crock pot all day.. Smelling up the house.. Absolutely best thing ever to walk in and smell. Then came the realization that the kids won’t eat cabbage.. don’t like runzas.. and we had to punt for something different for them.. (Loose Meat sandwiches similar to the Tastee Loosemeat) But I stray.. Back to the dough..

    Well the 4 cups of water or milk was make half milk half water.. then sprinkle the yeast over it.. my stupid self stirred it.. and it drowned it in 4 cups of liquid.. SO i started over.. and this time, it said you can put the yeast in with the dry ingredients.. So I did.. then had to heat the liquid up and but the butter in to help soften/melt the butter. I mixed it all by hand.. (I bought a Danish Dough hook.. so fun) and then because of a cat that decided to wake up and start helping, I modified my kneading space.. BUT I got it all done.. I was ready to die about knead #70.. Finally got a decent warm dough.. oiled my Tupperware bowl and the dough.. and put the lid on.. and prayed over the bowl on regular intervals.. After 30 min, I took a shot of Fireball and popped the lid.. didn’t think the dough had done anything.. I felt like an Antifungal.. I put the lid back on and waited.. OMG I’m not very patient.. the seal on the Tupperware bowl popped.. The dough had risen.. .

    I rolled and stuffed the dough… with first the Runza mix then remaining with the loose meat and cheese.. Baked them.. OMG!! Now our favorite.. Will be repeating again..

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Look at you! Runzas—indeed, using yeast dough–is no longer a mystery to you. Isn’t it a fantastic recipe? I’m so glad it behaved for you!! We value runzas very highly at our house, whether from the restaurants or homemade ones tucked into the freezer and pulled out and baked. And it seems that even littles who say they don’t like cabbage (or saurkraut!) LOVE runzas. (Sometimes plenty of cheese added, all melting and oozy) helps! Thanks for the excellent comment, Theresa!

  49. Diane Zalk

    I cannot find your post on sheet-mulching. The link on my emails (received this morning) doesn’t work – I get the dreaded 404 message – and I can’t seem to find it using the site search. Help!!!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Dear Diane, that’s because that is a big MY BAD. The post was published before it was ready, so I pulled it out. Please watch your email box–it’s the next post and should be published later this week! And . . my sheet mulching worked great (spoiler alert!) and I’ll have more to share on the topic!

  50. Michael


    Chicken Health question. Mindy has gone lame. She has diahreah and is unable to stand on her own. The others have started attaching her so I moved her into the sunroom for comfort and protection. So far not much has help her. I did feed her a drink of water, garlic salt and sugar to help rehydrate her. That and given her baths to keep her clean.

    So would you have any suggestion?

    Kind Regards,

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Michael, you’ve done the best thing for her so far in just separating her from the flock. I would keep fresh water and some sort of soft food available (mashed boiled eggs, applesauce,or her own feed mixed with warm water) and give her separated until she shows some improvement. Dip her beak in the water several times during the day. I’m sorry, sometimes a sick chicken recovers, and sometimes she doesn’t. It sounds like she might have gotten into something (poison?) that didn’t agree with her system. Wishing you the best!

  51. Henry

    Hi chickens, I’d like to order 8 of the cedar smooth napkin rings, but not sure how to specify on your order setup? Thanks, I’ll place my order after I hear back. Beautiful family!

  52. Leslie


    I bought the Halfling Pantry cookbook awhile back and loved it, but tried to get into it yesterday and it has gone missing from my books list. Tried to recover it, that didn’t work, tried to buy it again and THAT didn’t work because I already bought it. Can you send it to me again, please?

  53. Melissa D.

    Hi! I have been wanting to make Runzas but I’ve never made them myself so I went searching for instructions online. My father, Art Dvorak (from Lincoln, NE), who is approaching 80 years old, used to own a “Runza” restaurant in Sioux City, Iowa. He and my mother were divorced but I remember both of them making Runzas – dad in the restaurant kitchen in large batches and mother in the home kitchen. When I recently asked my Dad for the recipe, he said he didn’t remember where he put the written (he said “real”) recipe but he texted: “5 pounds of dehydrated onion (re-hydrated), 15lb hamburger, 20lb shredded cabbage, salt & lots of pepper too”, LOL! He also said he used carnation POWDERED milk & Crisco in the dough. He said dehydrated onion worked best and back in the 40’s they made Runzas with fresh onion but they changed it to dehydrated in the 60’s for convenience. He suggested I run the cabbage over a grater on the big hole side or cut it in 1/4″ strips. He told me to put the filling into little football shapes, and shape the dough into ovals. He’s really upset he can’t find his actual Runza restaurant recipe and so am I however, I read him your recipe and he thinks it’s probably close. He never used sauerkraut he thought that would be a good addition…said Grandma and mom both used fresh onion though the taste will be a little different. I wondered if you have ever tried making the Runzas with powdered milk and dehydrated onion? I don’t have any dehydrated onion so I’ll be making them with fresh. Nor do I have powdered milk on hand, and the grocery stores are a coronavirus danger area so no trip to the store either, lol! I’m really excited to do your recipe this afternoon and thanks for the tips!! They seem to be on par with what I remember seeing in the kitchen. I don’t ever remember having one with cheese. Thank you again for the great info! 🙂

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Melissa, now you’ve got me curious! Did you make them from my recipe, and did they turn out as you had hoped? Any changes you might make the next time? Thanks for sharing your story about your dad with me. I love Dad stories. 🙂

  54. Robert Frisby

    Hi. I know this was posted a long time ago but I will ask anyway. I live in Sandy Utah and we have cold winters, not as cold as they used to be but cold. My whole family has always grown gardens and so have I but I have never planted turnips. I am going to try them this year. I have always just left my carrots in the ground and covered them with a thick layer of leaves, then just go out and get what I need through the winter. Can turnips be stored the same way or do they have to pulled?

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Robert, great question! I would say with enough cover (thick layer of leaves, or straw or both) your turnips will be fine through the winter, as long as there’s not some historic cold snap. We are in zone 5 and I have no trouble overwintering turnips in my hoophouse. Try it! if you’ve been successful with carrots, I would imagine that your success with overwintering turnips would be the same!

  55. Sandra

    Hello! Love your posts! I have a question about your Runza recipe. You mentioned putting them in freezer bags to cook later….do you bake them all the way through before you freeze them or do you partially bake them and then finish them in the oven later?

    Thanks so much!
    Sandra (also from Nebraska!)

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Sandra, hello! Great question. I do bake them all the way through, then let them cool and sock them away in freezer bags. My guys will pull them out and stick them in the microwave to heat them up (and thaw them) for a quick meal. My son takes them in his lunches cold, and they will thaw by lunchtime. He doesn’t mind eating them cold.

      happy runza-making!

  56. Michael Foley

    Hi, my friends have a Flair stove/oven just like yours. It’s awesome but it needs TLC. A broken glass around the top dials and clock and a non working hood are the main problems. You mention in an article a friend who carries parts. Is there a code bract you could share with me?
    Thank you for your time.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Hi Michael! unfortunately, that friend from CA was in an automobile accident and hasn’t really been doing very well. I’ve emailed him requests a couple of times, and he hasn’t gotten back to me, sadly. My advice for your friends would be to join the Facebook Flair pages (just type Frigidaire Flair into the search bar on Facebook–there are three active groups that I know of) and ask for advice about parts and repair through those pages. Some of the fans of the flair are amazingly well-informed! Also, I have seen parts on Etsy, but you really have to snap them up when you see them. Good luck to your friends! (Oh–one more thing–they might make some calls in their area, to appliance repairmen. I know of one appliance repairman in our area who said that he occasionally runs across Flair stoves when he goes to install new appliances. He said that he had one that he sometimes takes parts off of. So that’s a possibility too!)

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