Since I am two days behind on Last week in pictures, and a day behind on the blog post, you two today.
We have been told for sure that Connell will be distance learning when school starts, at least for a bit. To say that the kids are disappointed to once again have Toni for their teacher is an understatement. No one cried, but ……. Monday Anna built a shelf for the bathroom, she did a great job. Toni and the kids had chores done when I got there so we could get to work on the continuous fence, but the lag bolts had been misplaced. So we got two posts in and the panel pulled over, and then we tied the panel to the fence. We sent the three older kids home to work on their steers and heifers, and then Toni and I went down to clean up the stack yard for when our small bales get baled. We finished that had and we were talking to mom when we received a call that the neighbor’s filly was colicing. Their filly is by Dude and out of Freida, she is a fancy girl. So, Toni ran up with some immediate response to help them, I went home to check on the kids. Ben and Kicker had the loader out chopping thistles because those things never stop growing in irrigated pasture.
Tuesday Anna built a bathroom hamper, and moved the old one out. We had people come and get a half a beef. Bryans calls and the half in there is done. So Toni is going to pick that up on Thursday since we are out of grain fed burger at the moment, and Ben is close to flipping out. Ben had some lag bolts in his pickup, so Toni grabbed those after she loaded the meat out. Toni and the kids put up three sections of continuous fence, Anna, Kaine and Kade washed their steers to prepare for a local show at someone’s house on Sunday/Monday. Dad went to Basin Feed and got a bundle of posts for us to continue our fence and he got some hog panels for mom and him to make a pen for her dog in the back yard. Coco came back up from CA, and got there just in time to help upload the panels. Coco and the boys did chores, Toni, Anna and I caught Cammie and tried to hand breed her to Colonel, she says she is not in heat. The twins and Leslie came over for dinner, Leslie brought pizza from Connell, the DeRailer is my favorite. The Twins left Wednesday morning, so we all had to tell them goodbye, they headed back to college in Oklahoma.
Wednesday dad went into Basin City Home and Hardware and got more lag bolts for us and three bags of cement. The two older boys went down to mom and dads to help them put up their dog fence for Sammy, it is a hog panel fence. Toni and the kids, basically the three older ones but Jaxsen was there, put up 4 more panels on the continuous fence, so they get up to $10 off of the Sonic menu Thursday when Toni takes them down to go swimming, they were all pretty excited. Coco and I got there in time to help with the last panel, so dad came out to socialize with Coco and helped tamp a post. We tried to hand breed Cammie again, she was a no. So we turned her back out and will try AIing her next year. We are basically done breeding. We also caught Barb and got her in to give her a shot. She is headed to the vet on Sunday to get her infections cleaned up and hopefully get bred. We like Barb, but she is a weird horse. She stood great for the shot, then we went to give her some grain in a feedpan and she spooked from the feedpan. What horse does that?
Thursday Toni and mom took the kids swimming and picked up meat from Bryans Butcher Block. The kids got their Sonic meals and were all super happy. It might not seem like much, but these kids are easy to please. We have a grain fed half in the freezer. Ben thinks he needs it all to eat so he doesn’t starve, but we think we can to ahead and sell some if anyone needs some beef. We have more in being processed right now, so if anyone needs large quantities of hamburger, we have you covered. Toni and the kids got more continuous fence up after swimming, when I got there, we just had one more panel to put up for the night. We really want to get this first section done before we leave for the show.
Friday Ruby came down and she helped the kids clip their steers for the secret show we found for the weekend and for pictures for the Benton Franklin Fair sale. They got all of the steers clipped and worked on, Ruby stayed until about 2. Then the kids went down and they took down one section of wood fence and put up a gate for the alley. Toni took Chloe and her dad out to look at Chloe’s filly Fast, then came back out and helped. We had to take out the wood fence to make room for the continuous fence. We got it all done on Friday, so now it is up to Ben to do the welding to get it complete. We were about 4 inches short to get the fence to the railroad tie, but Ben thought he could weld some stuff on and make it look good. We were fine with that. Dad came out and assisted. It feels pretty freaking awesome to have this section of the fence done. We are far from completely done, but this is the first leg.
Saturday the kids and I worked on their steers and we took pics for the Benton Franklin Fair. We got them uploaded and sent in. Toni went down, got the last two outside mares in, and got them shipped out with their owner. Toni and dad worked on the wood section of fence and Toni was bidding on heifers for us at the Express Sale. McCall and McKenna went to the sale to check out the heifers for us. Friday night all of our hay got baled and stacked. Ben came down Saturday morning to pick up the rebales and count how much hay we got. Then he came back later and started welding up the two gates. Ben got his part of that fence done, so it really is done now and has three hanging gates. After we got done working on the steers we went down and helped finish up the fence and then we moved panels down around our newly cut alfalfa. The alfalfa had a hot wire fence between it and the horses, but we could just see one of those horses taking it out and all of them eating freshly cut hay and getting sick. Once we got that done, we all had to go pack for the show.
Sunday we got ready to go to the secret steer show and then we waited for Leslie to come. Toni worked in the morning to try to get ahead of the work she would miss on Monday being gone. She also went and checked everything before we left. We had to run Barb into the vet before we took off, so ran her in. Anna went down early and got Hottie in to doctor her leg, she trusts no one to do it right. We were packed and ready to go pretty early, but weigh in didn’t start until 3. The kids were really excited to hit the road and acted like they had ants in their pants. Leslie and her kids got to the house, we leaded up and headed out, got there, got our stuff and steers unloaded. We were the first ones to arrive. Toni and I went and set up the camper and Leslie and the kids started washing the steers. The show had approximately 30 head of steers so was a really good show. All of the kids (not just ours) were extremely appreciative to have the opportunity to showcase their animals and the hard work that they had put in. And we as parents are extremely appreciative as well. Shows are not fun, not easy, and not cheap to put on, so we can’t thank the people enough that took it on and put together such a professional, fun show for these kids.
We also want to thank all of our 2020 foal buyers. As this week ends and next week begins, we are getting ready to start weaning. We have the bulk of the foals sold but there are still some really good foals available. And thankfully that has been recognized as we are averaging about four calls per day and multiple emails on people looking for their dream horse. As always, we love receiving the calls, reading the emails, talking about our breeding program, and giving tours of the ranch. Lots of people are looking for broke horses and we don’t have anything broke for sale. We have a really sweet neighbor girl that needs a broke horse, so if anyone has anything that would work for a beginner, please let us know.
Next week will be bittersweet as we should have been at the Benton Franklin County Fair. This will be the first year that one of our family has not been at the BF Fair in a LONG time. The BF Fair theme is always the “Best Week of Summer” and for us it is also the last week of summer break. This would have also been our first year at the fair without Grandpa. Grandpa who into his 90s was always there to watch and support his grandkids and great-grandkids. This was one his favorite things to do, go to a cattle show! Life doesn’t always go as we plan, we just have to keep going forward. This is a good life lesson for the kids, preserve and don’t lose hope, and probably a good reminder for us as well.