Michele, My Belle

I’ve mentioned in earlier posts how jazzed I am about our local flock of farmgirls. Now, northeast Wyoming has an official farmgirl sisterhood chapter and we’re calling ourselves the ”High Plains Sage Hens”.

Last week, our new friend, Michele, had us out to her home in the country, the geography being “All Wyoming”. We drove 40 miles, some of which was a gravel road winding its way through rough foothills, redrock cliffs and expansive meadows. The landscape is home to a variety of trees, shrubbery and many species of native grasses. Ponderosa pine, spruce, fir, birch, scrub oak… the latter was laden with lacey hops vines. I want to take another trip out ‘thataway’ to make a large wreath of the vines.

The age variance in our bevy of farmgirl beauties is wide and deep. At 53, I’m the oldest and our youngest is sweet 16. “Michele” — I’ve always thought that was such a pretty name and the old Beatles song was sweet and easy on the ears. Our Michele fits her name to a “T”; at 35, although young (in my eyes), she’s a farmgirl extraordinaire. She and her husband, Darren, gutted and renovated their country home and in three short years! Michele has decorated much of it with the fruit of her own hands. She also works full-time as a nurse. I don’t think the girl sleeps!

On this day, our farmgirl visit centered around Michele teaching us how to make ‘locker hook’ rugs. “Snack time” included her special recipe of spiced tea and pumpkin chocolate chip bread. Naturally, a home tour was in order. Michele has collected some fabulous antiques and she displays them with fearless farmgirl style. Oh, her birdhouses! They’re just too much fun… most being quite large and sporting all kinds of funky-junky wonders. Our afternoon at Michele’s was a feast for the eyes and soul food for our spirits. “Michele, my belle”…you’re as sweet as honeysuckle, kind to the core, and if that weren’t enough, you brought old-fashioned congeniality and a wheelbarrow full of incredible talent to our flock.

  1. cyndy says:

    This city girl is just "plain" jealous!

  2. Michele Hieb says:

    Shery…thank you for all the your kindness:) I look forward to our farmgirl nights, junk diving and antique trips in the near future.

  3. Sarah says:

    Sounds like a fabulous evening…and the recipe for chocolate chip pumpkin bread is forthcoming, yes???

  4. Diane Bell says:

    I so look forward to your posts. I read them over and over. I am a city girl wishing to be a country girl. I am country at heart. Keep up the good work.

  5. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Yeppers…on the recipes. Just waiting to hear back from Michele. Shery J

  6. RanchFarmgirl says:

    TJ, You simply must visit the Farmgirl Connection website which you can visit easily by clicking on the MJF header at the top of this page. Then, join the chat group and that will be a good bet for finding farmgirls in your neck of the woods. I’m sure there are plenty of them. We’re in a much more sparsely populated area, so I’m confident you can locate some farmgirl sisters if you keep diggin’! Thank you for the kind words. Shery J

  7. Maria says:

    What a fun group. Michele has a beautiful home. I feel like I was there with all your beautiful photos. So glad you gals had such a great time. I think I need to start a farm gals group where I live!

  8. Oh Shery,
    As always, I luv your photos…and the picture with the Geraniums….well, I am sooooo pining away for Spring & Summer as I just luv geraniums in my garden.
    Where I use to live, they were perennials…but up here in the Pac/Inland NW they are annuals. I have 5 plants (that I dug out of my garden last fall)in a big plastic container in my family room…waiting to go outside & greet the sun…but for now…they give me joy bringing green into my home.
    Farm girl hugz followed by ‘dirt manicures’ lol!

  9. Blair says:

    The photos, gorgeous!

  10. Ann says:

    I love your photos and the group’s name. How fitting and adorable!

  11. christine says:

    I love to read your blog. I am working hard to become a Ranch Farmgirl myself. Two years ago I bought my own piece of heaven in Wyoming…40 acres of potential for me to pour my heart and soul into. For now I’m stuck in Florida with a condo that won’t sell but your blog keeps me going and fuels my dreams. Thank you.

  12. Edna says:

    I love all the photos…I am looking forward reading future blogs….I am a country girl at heart,but still in the city….Thank you

  13. Reba says:

    I so enjoyed your blog and the photos are absolutely gorgeous, just like it always is in the west! I am still in the city but I feel like a "part" even though I do not have a farm of my own yet. Mary Jane is right, "farmgirl is a condition of the heart." Thanks for sharing.

  14. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Hi Farmgirls, I contacted Michele and asked for the recipes I mentioned in this article. Here they are. Enjoy! ~Shery J

    Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

    1 2/3 cup flour
    1 cup sugar
    1 tsp baking soda
    1/4 tsp baking powder
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
    1 stick of butter melted
    1 15 0z. canned pumpkin
    6 0z chocolate chips (semi-sweet)
    2 eggs

    preheat oven 350 degrees. fold ingredients with a spatula (wet to dry). In a greased pan bake 25 min for small loafs, 55 min for large loafs, or 15 to 20 min for muffins or until springy to touch….Enjoy:)

    Spiced Tea

    2 cups Tang
    2 packets of Koolade lemonade (unsweetened)
    1 1/2 cups sugar
    1 cup instant tea
    1/2 tsp cinnamon plus a pinch
    1/4 tsp ground cloves plus a pinch

    combine and stir well
    Add 2 to 4 tsp of mix to coffee cup of hot water and enjoy:)

  15. I want to live in Wyoming and be in your chapter!!! please!!! I want to ride a horse rounding up cattle and pack iron and shoot at varmits!!! Seriously…I so enjoy your blog I finally decided to let you know. I too have a new chapter here in California…YES THERE ARE STILL FARMGIRLS IN CALIFORNIA…and they are blessing my life every time I turn around. You said it all so beautifully.

  16. I enjoy reading the blog and look forward to hearing about all you ranch girls, I live on the east coast. I have an acre more or less and I say this is my farm acre. I love animals and gardening. I am going to try the recipes they sound good. Keep up the good work. Love you all Juanita

  17. Betty jo says:

    Oh My gosh, the bike is awesome… there are lots of goodies. I love it and it is so awesome that you brought it into your home!!!!

  18. Veesha says:

    I live in the Powell/Cody Wyoming area, how far are y’all away from here?

  19. Sheree says:

    Shery, what a wonderful peek into your life! Michele is indeed very talented. Thanks so much for sharing your terrific photos of her skills. It warms my heart to see something like a bicycle decorated and hung as art. What courage! Being a city dweller, very disconnected from like souls, I have raised many an eyebrow when visitors see a family pitchfork used as a kitchen curtain rod or a manure fork decorated with silk flowers as a wall display. lol

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