By Terryn Drieling Cool Book for
With real-life photography and
Author Michelle Provost and her family; husband Ryan and their
kids, Parker, Kash, Kinzie and Shaylee. These homeschooled ranch
kids helped to bring the ABC’s on the Ranch concept to fruition.
(or any kids, for that matter)
explanations of ranching tools
and terms, author Michelle
Provost takes kids on a journey
through the ranch from A to Z with her book
ABC’s on the Ranch. Starting with “A is for
alfalfa,” each letter is thoughtfully paired with
things kids might fi nd on a ranch.
WR sat down with Provost to talk more about
her book. From inspiration to challenges, she
walked us through this fun and educational
book that would make a great addition to any
youngster’s bookshelf. Here’s our conversation.
WR: Where did the inspiration for the book come from?
Michelle: When I’d read books to the kids, I’d often think
to myself that writing children’s books was something I
could do. Then, in the spring of 2016, we moved our family
to a remote ranch in the Sandhills of Nebraska. When I
say remote, I’m talking over an hour to any town with gas,
groceries, or a school.
The remoteness of the ranch led to my decision to homeschool
our kids and the book became part of the curriculum.
The kids helped come up with words for each letter
and we took most of the pictures together.
WR: Running through the alphabet in my head, I can think of
a couple of letters that must have been challenging to come up
with words for. Was there a letter that really challenged you?
Michelle: Yes! N was a challenge. Coming from our feedlot
background, all I could come up with was necropsy for N.
But, I thought that might be an umm… interesting picture
and explanation for a kids’ book.
Thankfully, a friend suggested “Neighbors” for N, and I
thought it was perfect. There are things on the ranch that
just wouldn’t happen without neighbors willing to lend a
hand. It’s been pretty awesome to witness the community
and comradery of ranching fi rst-hand!
WR: On the fl ip side, what was your favorite letter?
Michelle: My favorite letter of the whole book is X for
eXample. I’ve actually gotten some backlash from having
a word that didn’t technically start with the letter, but I
love it and wouldn’t change it. Ranching is engrained with
family and community. It’s pretty awesome to witness the
older more seasoned ranchers passing down traditions and
setting the eXample for the kids and the younger ranchers
just getting started.
WR: Do you have any plans for a sequel to ABC’s on the Ranch?
Michelle: Yes. It’s been so fun and rewarding seeing the
response from people who’ve purchased the book that I
started working on The ABC Book of Horses a few months
after the release of ABC’s on the Ranch. We’re working on
putting on the fi nishing touches on the book and hope to
have it published and ready for release later this fall.
To add ABC’s on the Ranch to your collection, visit
JUNE / JULY 2019 I WORKING RANCH I 17