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A dated archive of blogs is also available below the index.

Click here to jump to the index, or scroll down to see a selection of photos related to the blog posts.

Blacksmith or Wordsmith

Iron legs from yesteryear.

Smaller iron items inside.

The scrap-iron table.

Dust, Grass, and Writing

Like the native grasses, the roots of writing go deep and reach out in many directions.

Tough prairie grass roots splitting open a rock.

Green life may be found under dry debris.

Fringed Jacket Foofaraw

Turtle carved from bone.

Turtle made of silver.

Warrior Woman pin.

George's grizzly bear claw earring.

Powwow jingle cones made of tin.

Brass bell.

A tiny dream catcher.

Harley Owners' Group pin in honor of Jerry.

Wally McRae's cufflink and tooth.

South Dakota Poet Laureate? Not Right Now, Thanks.

"An older writer, conscious of his or her limited life span, may have specific projects in mind to complete. Thus, requiring that the Poet Laureate travel and teach extensively may exclude older writers regardless of their worthiness to hold the position."

Don't just click "like" about some political story you read.

Pick up the phone or write a letter and make a difference.

Ah! The Bathtub.

A brass hook on a nearby wall to hold my robe or a towel.

A removable wire basket stretches across the tub to hold my soap and sponges.

Windbreak House
Now on Facebook.

If you Like me on this Facebook page you'll get notifications of my newly-posted blogs as well as announcements about my books, writing retreats, and other events to do with Windbreak House.​WindbreakHouse

No kitten videos, but I post Tuesday Writing Tips, Wednesday Word Posts, and various other writing-related stories, announcements, book reviews, photos and the occasional joke.

More Stories and Essays by Linda
may be found on this website.

* Home Page Message archives
Many of these essays have writing advice. All have photos, some have recipes, a few have poems.

* Poetry Page essays
Read suggestions for writing and performing poetry and the stories behind some of Linda's poems.

* Critter Stories
Brief stories and photos of birds and wildlife seen on Linda's ranch may be found on this page.

* Gallimaufry Page
Stories and photos that don't fit anywhere else.

Linda on YouTube

Nancy Curtis, publisher and owner of High Plains Press, recorded a couple of videos of Linda reading her poetry and posted them on YouTube.

To see Linda read "Where the Stories Come From"
click here.

To see Linda read her poem "Make a Hand"
click here

Or go to and search for Linda Hasselstrom.

You may also want to visit the High Plains Press facebook page where you will find these two poetry videos and much more about the many great western books-- poetry and non-fiction-- published by High Plains Press.

Thanks, Nancy!

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The Sisters Grimm

April 30, 2013

Tags: Book Store, Public Appearance, Nebraska

The Sisters Grimm interior.
From horse stalls to cozy bookstore.

. . .
From the outside, you might mistake it for just another big red Nebraska barn on the outskirts of a small town.

But The Sisters Grimm Bookstore and Coffee Shop, inside a barn that once sheltered Tennessee Walking horses, is unlike any barn-- or indeed any bookstore or coffee shop-- I’ve ever visited. I wish it had been here when I was living just 50 miles away in Cheyenne, Wyoming and desperate for a hideaway like this.

Inspired by her senior college thesis on the fairy tales collected by the Brothers Grimm, Jamie Carpenter chose the store’s name when she convinced her sister Jessica to join her in the business-- but there’s nothing grim about it.

Order an espresso coffee, tea, or choose from other drinks freshly made in the compact kitchen. Select a pastry made by the owner’s mother and other neighborhood cooks and settle onto the comfy couch. Depending on the day, you might be able to visit with owner Jamie, join a meeting of a community group in progress or just pick up a book and read.

On Saturday, April 27, I was privileged to do a public reading and conduct a writing workshop in one of Sisters Grimm’s cozy nooks. Everyone nibbled on home baked treats while they listened to me read from Dirt Songs, 50 of my poems published with 50 of those from Nebraska’s Twyla Hansen. Later, several of the audience members were happy to read what they had written during our mini-workshop.

With the help of her parents, Tim and Deb Nolting, and her sister Jess with husband Juan Rocha, Jamie mucked out the stalls and scrubbed the walls with bleach. Tim and Juan built bookshelves by the dozen and created a handy kitchen and modern bathroom with a rustic atmosphere. Tim and Juan are now converting the barn’s upper floor into a spacious and light-filled apartment, using recycled materials for floor, ceilings and other built-ins. A massive stack of books awaits distribution to the proper shelves downstairs.

The store specializes in used books and each stall holds a specialty: mysteries (I left with a dozen), westerns, religious, children’s and regional (Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, South Dakota, Kansas and Montana), as well as history, art, textbooks and general nonfiction. New books include titles from Storey Publishing ( on gardening, crafts and farm and ranch life, as well as selections from local and regional authors.

Besides the books, the store is filled with antiques, photographs, paintings and greeting cards and many of these delights are for sale. I bought some delicious goat gouda made by Victory Hill Farm ( The store also stocks sharp cheese from Coturnix Creamery, which uses milk from the Irish Cream Sheep Dairy in Bushnell ( I meant to buy scented soaps likewise made locally of goat milk by Double L. Country Store ( Quilts and ancient farm machinery are part of the decor.

Everywhere are personal touches that make the place feel like a particularly welcoming home: the new burlap bags covering the couch. The gigantic cups in which coffee is served. Photographs of local sights. Greeting cards lying on shelves where the browser sees their individuality rather than a rack of sameness. Around the top of the kitchen wall appears the same printed alphabet from which I studied printing in the Hermosa grade school. Pick up a book, rock, read, sip, while the afternoon away.

Sound like a reader’s idea of heaven? There’s more: the food: besides the espresso and other drinks, Jamie serves pastries baked by her and her sister, their mother Deb and a neighbor. And she’s available to cater lunches for groups reserving the barn for special events.

If you’re driving I-80 across the nation’s midsection, plan a stop at the southwest corner of Nebraska; Bushnell is just 12 miles west of Kimball. Dive off the convenient interstate exit, drive three miles north to Bushnell, cross the railroad tracks and drive three or four blocks to the first stop sign, where you’ll see a Sisters Grimm billboard. Turn left and you’ll see the barn and its spacious parking lot.

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For more information:

The Sisters Grimm
1598 RD 34 N
(Corner of Maple & D Streets)
Bushnell NE 69128



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