Fun With Traveling Editor Ann Kaiser
Photo gallery highlights from Ann Kaiser's Country Woman workdays.
Getting into the swing. I prepare to rope my target, as one of my hostesses Chele Needens coaches. Photography by Jim Wieland.
Corny chore. I was up to my ears in 1978, detasseling in Janice Swanson's seed corn field in Galesburg, Illinois. Souvenirs were "corn rash" on my arms, a spider up my sleeve and great memories.
Heavy duty. Aching muscles…then sweet satisfaction! I could hardly wait to taste of the juicy cantaloupe after a tough day picking with Barb Ellermann and her crew in Vincennes, Indiana (1979).
Pioneer style. In 1982, I stepped back into the past to cook with Pat Rode of Adrian, North Dakota on a historic wagon train trip. The chuck wagon was a far cry from a modern kitchen, but we had all the basics to prepare good old-fashioned meals.
Udderly inexperienced, I attempted to attach the milker without riling a patient Holstein. Carol Schauf put me through the paces at her Sparta, Wisconsin farm.
Bath time. Lathering a squirmy sow was on the day's list of chores with Mary Junker near Tavistock, Ontario in 1982. We gave baths to all the soon-to-be moms before moving them into farrowing crates where they'd deliver their baby pigs.
Bogged down? I pulled on hip boots to corral cranberries in 1982 at Louise and Curt Olson's marsh in Warrens, Wisconsin. I also drove their harvester with rotating reel to beat off the fruit.
Incredible crop. Tending huge banana squash growing hydroponically in "The Land" pavilion at Walt Disney World (1983) gave me and CW readers a glimpse of farming in the future.
Pretty peppers. After harvesting loads of peppers with Evelyn Hobson in Roswell, New Mexico (1984), one of her employees schooled me in how to string a bright chili ristra.
Rose Bowl blooms. I helped flower floats after working at the California greenhouses of rose grower Lucy Overgaag and mum grower June Van Wingerden, who furnished some of the millions of blooms for the 1987 parade.
Tall order. I saw We Three Kings in a whole new light while leading Tom in a Nativity that Maxine Hale of Cape Girardeau, Missouri staged in 1996.
Smooth sledding. This hardworking canine team and Nancy Davis (in sled) made a musher out of me at her Anaconda, Montana sled-dog adventure business in 1997.
That's the spear-it. Sitting not-so-pretty, I snapped asparagus as I rode in a low-slung picking cart at Teresa Kokx's Hart, Michigan farm in 1998.
Home sweet home. Building houses with Gingerbread Lady Peggy Anderson in Louisiana was sweet fun in 1998.
Aloe there. On a 1999 workday with Audrey Sigrist of Mercedes, Texas, I peeled aloe vera leaves to be processed for juice or cream. Prickly aloe vera is called the first aid plant and is known for its healing properties.
Two for tea. In 2011, hostess Jane Knight and I rode the "Green Giant" custom harvester through a field of tea plants. Photography by Jim Wieland.
Bee Careful. Hostess Sheri Burns and I examined a frame covered with bees in 2011. I learned how to give queen bees the royal treatment on this honeybee farm. Photo: Matthew Gilson
Mountain's majesty inspired me to get busy planting at Rising Sun Campground in Glacier National Park. I helped park ecologist Joyce Lapp in 2012. Photography By KC Glastetter and Jeremie Hollman.
These are just a few of the exciting, unique and challenging jobs Ann Kaiser has taken on for her “Editor in the Country” series. They have taken her to all 50 states and most of the Canadian provinces.
In 1976, young and admittedly “wet behind the ears,” Ann started accepting invitations from readers to “come work a day with me.” Her hardworking country hostesses taught her a thing or two—and put her to the test in many memorable ways as a honey harvester, corn detasseler and camel herder, to name a few.
“It’s a privilege to have been associated with this friendly down-to-earth magazine,” Ann says. “It continues to reflect the diversity, strength and spirit of country women throughout North America.”
Enjoy sharing Ann’s photo travelogue of some of her most memorable adventures.