Home, home on the Range... This song was written by a Kansas Dr., Brewster Higley. He was probably talking about his native Kansas where "the skies are not cloudy all day."

Kansas is a state that I have actually lived in (We lived on Range Rd too so I thought the song especially fitting then). We just lived there for a year and a half when Mara was a baby and then moved when Jonathan was less than 2 weeks old. Though Kansas is not "home" to me and it isn't the landscape that I find the most beautiful it is still a very neat state and we did enjoy our time there.

The Landscape of Kansas is mostly low, rolling hills, with wooded river valleys in the eastern half. There is great evidence of the world wide flood in Kansas, as it has been a great place for finding fossils.

Kansas gets its name for Kansa which means "people of the south wind". There is indeed a lot of wind in Kansas, and it is not always a kind wind. There can be big storms, tornadoes and blizzards. While we lived there we did spend some time in the basement waiting for tornadoes to go by (and we were not far from where they hit causing loss of life.) but I had rather wanted to see one and I never did. I decided it might be better to stay safe!

Some of the state's biggest money makers are wheat, sorghum, airplane manufacturing (In Wichita, the town we lived in) and beef. There are also huge military bases which has added many jobs. There are also oil and natural gas wells and in Kansas is one of the few sources of Helium. (So you can be grateful for Kansas when you have floating balloons at your party!)

Kansas became a state on Jan. 29, 1861 and it is the 34th state. Its nickname is the Sunflower state. The capital is Topeka but its largest city is Wichita. Wichita is a nice city with a well made road system which makes it almost impossible to get lost and at least when we lived there (2000-2001) there was very little traffic problems.

Pizza Hut was started in Kansas in Wichita in 1958.

One of the foods we enjoyed while studying Kansas was apple fritters. Kansas is well known for growing wheat. A hardy strain of wheat was brought to Kansas by a group of Mennonites from Russia. It was well suited for Kansas soil and climate and worked out very well. Kansas is one of the USA's top producers of grain.

The picture above it of Whole Wheat Sticks a recipe from a Kansas wheat site.

A recipe that we made but I didn't get a picture of was Sunflower Popcorn Bars. We really enjoyed them. I did substitute molasses for corn syrup however which made it a bit healthier.

We also enjoyed Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Corn.

What do you love about Kansas?