“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
My friend Nina and I hit the Hat for Black Friday….I should qualify that and say unintentionally hit the Hat for Black Friday. We got some great deals over the whole weekend. Things we needed and things we wanted ;) I had bought a new Tassimo coffee maker from a lady (through FB) that didn’t use it and thought it would be great at the camp for those times when I was in a rush and just needed to make a quick cup on the fly. The Bossman will never use it and the coffee is pretty expensive if you’re cheap like I am but…….it’ll be for emergencies. We got a great deal on bamboo sheet sets (I needed) and the western store had everything 20% off and that included the sale prices so I scored some new jeans (I’ve lost about two sizes and was getting tired of slopping around in my old ones), a halter and a couple of Christmas shirts for the Bossman……Nina……well she had so many bags I lost track. She also bought some scrapbooking supplies from a Facebook friend that we picked up and even more “stuff” at Michaels. The next morning we headed over to the Horse Expo, watched some colt starting, a guy demonstrating how to use a hackamore and in between we shopped some more and visited with countless people we only see at events like this. I picked up a set of hobbles I had a guy braid for me at the same sort of event (albeit for cattle) last winter. Nina scored a pot load again, mostly Christmas gifts…….for her horse ;) There was some great artists there too. One I hadn’t seen in person for years. Richard Brooks (a talented silversmith, bit & spur maker) but we had kept in touch through Facebook. He hasn’t aged a lick and his stuff is even better when you see it up close. I also ran into a photographer friend of mine who is trying to talk me into going to a photo workshop in Portugal…..I’m thinking about it but I’m thinking I’m too cheap to do it. Sunday we slept in and decided not to go back to the Horse Expo but made a few more store stops, got groceries and got out of town long before the sun went down so we weren’t dodging elk in the dark.
It’s so nice to have that camp down there where you can go make a meal, sit and visit in front of the fire and go to bed and not have to drive home in the dark. The Bossman made out okay too……I even had time to sneak out and go to the bred cow sale on Saturday. Today I’m catching up here and he’s off to find a new bull to use on heifers…..the girls were glad to see me;
There was a little frost this morning but just a hair under freezing this afternoon so I’m headed out for my walk…..and seeing what I can find with my camera.
When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money. ~Susan Heller
Hope all of my American friends had a great Thanksgiving yesterday!!
A change is as good as a rest….so I’ve heard. I’m changing venues for a few days and headed to the camp in town to take in the Horse Expo. The first one was last year and I heard good things about it….I didn’t make that one as we were in mega chore mode and it was -30*. This year we’re not swamped and I’m taking extra hay up to the heifers so the man can just feed it and the bulls won’t need anything but a waterhole cut. I even cooked enough that he can eat leftovers (his favorite). I also heard from my friend that my rawhide hobbles/neckrope are finished and I can pick them up there.
Some speedgoats (Pronghorn Antelope) I saw yesterday on my way home from the heifers. They rarely jump a fence but , choose instead, to go under.
“I’m not afraid of death; I just don’t want to be there when it happens.” Woody Allen
As promised I’m doing a Throwback Thursday to get you all caught up on some of the things that have happened since my hiatus. This happened about this time last year when we had a LOT more snow.
I was in a hurry….too much of a hurry. I was trying to get done my chores so I could go have coffee with the Bossman’s aunt and still have time to be home to cook lunch. I had finished at the heifers and had fed the bulls a bale (that had taken longer as I had a fight with frozen strings) and just needed to cut the waterhole. I was doing this, when out of the corner of my eye I saw the truck roll out onto the dugout. Remember we had a lot of snow and the dugout was insulated enough that there wasn’t a bunch of ice……it was groaning under the weight of the truck……the new feed truck. In the back of my mind I thought “let it go, let it go” (and it wasn’t to the tune of frozen either) and the other part of my brain recollected that ice does have a rubbery quality to it and the key to crossing it is to keep the vehicle at a steady pace that isn’t so fast as to push the water under it ahead enough so that it has no where to go. I took my phone out of my pocket, left in on the edge of the hole (I guess I thought I might not want ist in my pocket if I went down) grabbed the waterhole bar and held it crossways (I’d seen that on some survival show the Bossman is always watching) and ran after the truck, got the door open and left it open while I opened both windows (thank GOD for electric window’s) and kept it going……wondering if I’d make it or not. I got it to the other side and the front end up on the bank before it spun out. There was water coming up around the back tires by then so I got out and rammed the bar down through the grill guard into a hole……and started shaking. I went back and called the Bossman and told him what had happened and that maybe he should hurry as I wasn’t sure how long the ice would hold. We got it out and he laughed it off……I thought I’d get chewed out. I’d wake up shaking in the night and have flashbacks of it in the middle of the day for a long while after…..can’t imagine how a soldier does it. I’m sure it was a little P.T.S.D.
Here’s Lee’s doodle;
Winter is a time of promise because there is so little to do — or because you can now and then permit yourself the luxury of thinking so. ~Stanley Crawford
It was 6* below F. this morning but the sun was shining and is WASN’T windy…..so a nice day after a couple of miserable ones. I cut a new waterhole for the heifers and just hope that it doesn’t warm up so much that it runs water in and makes a mess. It’s always dicey this time of year….you don’t want to have a muddy hole at the edge but you can’t get out so far that the weight of the critters break through and they slide under the ice or get stuck or trampled. We’re cutting on a shallow hole so it shouldn’t be a problem. I also fed close to water this morning so they won’t come in a bunch but hopefully a few at a time and wait their turn.
I saw “chicken” tracks in the yard this morning and wondered if I’d spot any on my chore run. These were in the burr oak tree at the Anderson place…..tomorrow I’ll take a better lens. We call them Prairie Chicken but most know them as Sharptail Grouse. We hardly had any for years around here as they were hunted out. We had lots of Hungarian Pheasants which seem to have all but disappeared when the Sharpy’s came back so maybe it wasn’t a hunting thing.
The horses are standing around sunning themselves this morning…..I might even have to lace up the shoes and go for a walk….I’ve been a little lazy about that these last couple of days.
The air of heaven is that which blows between a horse’s ears. Arabian Proverb
It’s nasty out this morning. I just got back from cutting waterholes and feeding the heifers. My wildrag was acting like an angry child slapping my face all the way back from the shop when I put the truck in. There’s not a lot of snow but whaat there is is blowing. This is what home looks like :(
The girls were waiting for me at the gate and chased me all the way to the dugout;
Just a wee bit more to catch you all up although a lot of you have been keeping up with me on Facebook. We lost both of our dogs this year. Kits was 14 and would have been 15 in June. In January she had a stroke and we had to have her put down……it was especially hard on the Bossman as she went everywhere with him. In May we had to have Notshy put down too. She had a hug tumour on her stomach and it was to the point where it really was bothering her. It’s lonesome around here without a dog and we have had a couple of chances to get pups but so faar it just hasn’t felt right……we’ll know when it does. I can’t say as I’ve miss the dog hair but everything else……..I have.
We also had a couple of BIG government changes in this country. Our provincial government is now a socialist one that I’m in no way in favor of. Tas, tax tax! It’s take from any that have and give to those who don’t want to work in my opinion….that and they want to impose some very stupid rules and hinder people who are getting things done…..but that is my political take and I don’t want to get all ranty on here. Our federal government is now liberal and I don’t like what they’re doing either. Spending money that just doesn’t exist just isn’t prudent. Enough said.
Richard wants to see photos of the new place…….I haven’t any as yet. Some have got in touch that the comments aren’t working properly on here and I’ll try and get that fixed as soon as I figure it out. Glad to see so many of you back….it’s humbling. This will probably still be the same drivel as it has in the past. I used facebook as a diary of sorts too but it’s just not the same. I went back yesterday and looked through some of my old post……it was more of a diary ;) Lee has done some doodles for me on Facebook and I’ll try and put them up……maybe do a Throwback Thursday to catch you all up. Thanks for coming back and reading. One thing this new app doesn’t have is spellcheck…..so if I miss any I’m sorry for that.
“Once you choose hope, anything is possible.”–Christopher Reeve
It’s been a LONG while since I’ve posted anything. This morning I got my usual emails and one happened to mention that there was a new app for WordPress. I downloaded it and caught up on a bunch of blogs (it just hasn’t been the same since Google Reader went the way of the Dodo bird) and decided I’d try and do a post with this new app as well…….see how it works.
Nothing much is new around here…..we’re still ranching but maybe with a few less cows. For the last couple of falls we’ve kept our steer calves but this fall we decided that we didn’t need to keep another job when the price of feed was so high so we sold them. Speaking of feed….it was SO dry this spring that there just wasn’t any to be had. The hay bandit’s (that’s what the Bossman calls them) were just not selling any…hoping for the prices to go up even farther. The Bossman said if we have to sell the cows…..”I’m ready to let them go”….then things loosened up a little and we managed to get hay hauled in from six hours away for much cheaper than we could buy it in the field here so that’s what we did.
We bought a house in town this fall too. AMAZING. We had been looking for a piece of land with a house to retire on when the time came and we had also looked at building a house on the land that we have there too. The Bossman said that he didn’t want to be like his uncle and get dragged kicking and screaming into the nursing home but would rather do it his own way. He figured if we found a place we liked we could come and go and get use to it over the period of years rather than days. Another reason was that we’ve seen guys sell out..buy a house in town and then realize didn’t have enough money to live on and no recourse to do it differently. We had the money for the house now and I’m happy to actually be able to have a camp in town to retreat to whenever I need to do that and the bonus is that the Bossman even looks forward to spending time there too….in fact…….he’s made himself some projects (moving trees around for one) that he does while he’s there. Now we kid the neighbours that we’re “going south” for a few days……just not as far as their Arizona places and the money we spend is on par with our dollar here ;) I’ve even had a couple of “girl” days with friends down there and looking forward to more.
In other news…..since the long absence, I have a couple of new mounts. I bought a little sorrel gelding a year ago and much as I like riding him he’s not big enough to do much roping on. His registered name is Painted Pesos but he’s know as The Peso here. Snick is still going strong and I try and keep him in shape without putting to many hard miles on so that I can use him at branding time. This fall I found another gelding that is a pretty solid horse. George is a stout 15.3 ten year old boy that I can rope off of and he’s quiet enough that I think I could even pack one of my big girl camera’s on. This spring the Bossman was looking for another horse and I found him one on Facebook…..I told him (who is very anti-Facebook) that we should call him Facebook…..he calls him Grover. He was four in July and he’s already 16.2. A little rough around the edges yet but the Bossman roped off him at calving time and then used him to heel calves at branding as well. Life is good.
I still call photography my biggest hobby but after doing a couple years worth of wedding and family photo shoots I got a little tired of it…..it became more of a job than I needed at the time. I think now that I’ve taken a break from it I might start doing the “Photo a Day” project like I did on Facebook in 2014. I also took up painting…..which I’m not very good at but enjoy none the less.
Well that’s it for a wordy update. Not sure how many are left out there who still read this blog but I thought I might just give it another shot. I’ve been doing the Facebook thing for a few years now and feel it’s so much more public and I’ve always felt with this blog that I could post what I wanted and if someone didn’t like it they could just unsubscribe.
Never ask, “What reason do I have to be happy?” Instead ask, “To what purpose can I attach my happiness?” ~ Robert Brault
…..and a beautiful May 1st is was too.
We sorted replacement heifers and trailed them over to the Anderson place yesterday and rode back through the cows and tried to gather pairs that had marked calves. These we took east and paired out into the south field (confused yet?). I rode my little Smartie horse…..I haven’t rode him much this spring and he was just a tad fresh………lope sideways and act out kind of fresh. I really think that a cutting bred horse has way more moves than most other horses…….he certainly does. This morning I rode him again and he wasn’t nearly as motivated to move sideways and up and down………we trailed the old herd bulls over to the Kelly field.
Moving the yearling heifers;
The Bossman dehorning and tagging a calf;
Moving bulls (they fought for the 2.5 mile trek;
It rained tonight………Smartie and Snick;