Monday did not start the week out in the best way possible. The mini foal, Emma, was colicing. The kids called Toni and she ran down to help. Toni had to move a couple of meetings, but otherwise was able to get down there ASAP and get some Immediate Response into Emma. Besides Emma not enjoying the treatment, she is fine. The biggest issue is she wasn’t very well halter broke and everyone knows that you have to walk them around. So Emma got a fast lesson on leading and now leads great. Dad, Kaine and Kade went to Bryan’s Meats and picked up the Hereford bull, between it and the half steer and grass fed we have, the freezer is full. They stopped at King’s Cup and dad paid the kids in drinks, he brought me one too. Toni and Anna were putting halters on the three foals we had just weaned when I got there, Coco and I went over and assisted, all three did pretty good. We normally don’t halter break them this quickly after weaning, but Dr. Sorenson is going on vacation, so we have to get all of the testing so the colts can go to So. Cal done earlier than normal. Then the 4 kids started chores and Toni, Coco, Dad and I started working on the fence. We hit a really rocky spot, the first hole was not good, however, we did get a good second hole. Toni blames Ben for jinxing it. The hole digging was going great and Ben asked her how it was going, she said great. We haven’t dug a good hole since that day. The kids went home to feed while we put things away. Then we moved Leroy and his mares back down to his pen since the fire is really out and stayed out.
Tuesday our Express cow got here, everyone was excited to see her. We have gotten over the shock of her being a cow and are trying to be happy about how things have shook out. Our friends Ben and Lindsey went and got the cow from Shaws (Idaho), then took her to Vytelle in Hermiston to make some embryos before we got her home. Vytelle is owned by Lisa Betz and is a pristine, very new, repro facility for anyone that needs some of that work done. Toni gave Ben and Lindsey a tour while they were here from bringing the cow. We are calling the cow Express because what else would we call her? Anna babysat Colton and Scarlet on Tuesday, so Kaine fed her calves for her. Kaine’s advising teacher called, and we have orientation next Tuesday and he gets his Chromebook for online learning. Toni had a call at 4, that lasted past 6, so Anna, Kaine and Coco did chores, I was on a school call for the High School and Junior High. Toni got down before I finished the call and worked on the three foals. Coco, Anna, Kaine and Kade got the stuff out to start working on the fence. We fired up the tractor after Toni was done and our hole digging was not good. So, Ben and Kicker came down to see if they could make any more progress. Well, in doing that they broke the post hole digger. But don’t worry, that will not stop us, we will just go back to hand digging holes, the kids are SUPER excited.
Wednesday was a great day, we found out the post hole digger was still under warranty, RDO in Othello sent someone out to look at it on Wednesday. They brought the wrong parts, so took the yoke back with them to fix. So no new holes on Wednesday, but we got posts planted in the two holes and we got a panel up, so all was not lost. That means we got done before 8:30, so I actually got to work on some pictures from Saturday, and Toni went back over the fence along the yearling pen and put more clips up. She also took some video with her phone of the “twins” doing their synchronized running. The kids went and fed their steers, the heifers are turned out. For the Kennewick steers, this is their last nightly feeding.
Thursday Toni had court in the AM, then her, Leslie and the kids hauled the steers to the Benton Franklin Fairgrounds for weigh in, then to the Easterday feedlot on Coffin Rd, were they will stay until sometime after the sale Friday. Weigh in went really well. Venom was the only steer that hadn’t been anywhere and he even acted like a pro. If Jax had to show Venom, we know Venom would have done really well. The kids were happy that we hauled their steers to the feedlot and they could see them off and say that final goodbye. These have been really great steers. We raised all of them and have been watching them grow and mature since birth. We are very pleased with how they turned out but glad to see this first group of steers through to conclusion. Then they came home and worked on fence. We are almost done with the driveway part, but we are down to a really bad digging area. Lots and lots of hand digging and inefficient use of time. It is pretty frustrating.
Friday was the Benton Franklin County Fair Auction, and the Market Stock Committee did a great job, the sale was a great success. We would like to thank the buyers of Corwin Ford, Watts Construction, Konen Conrete and Schenks. The buyers overall kept the steer kids average really close to that $2.50 mark. With on online component, we thought this was a really great sale. After the sale we went to have an early lunch at Taco Johns with Leslie, Ady and Julian. It was 10:30 am, so pretty much a fast food brunch, but it was good. Ady and Julian had great buyers too, and we are thankful for everyone that came and bid on the livestock
We ran to Grocery Outlet on the way home and grabbed a few things, then the 4 kids and I went home to clip steers for Connell and Othello. Toni went back to her office for a few hours to try to get some work done. While we were clipping, we realized that our good clippers were in Connell with Leslie, so I took the four kids and we ran over to Connell so we could get our clipping done. We made a stop to get Dad coffee as we went through Connell. We finished up the last part of the section we were on on the Continuous fence, and now we are on to the foal weaning pen. Sheena from Sagehill Vet came down Friday late afternoon to vet inspect Dais, Uni and Ammo to go to CA the first part of September. Toni realized she had made a strategic mistake during her halter breaking when the three foals had extreme stranger danger. But the three colts got done, all survived and we are moving forward with introducing more people to those colts’ lives now.
Saturday the kids got their steers ready to video in the afternoon for the CBJLS Virtual show. We took a quick lunch break and then went to work videoing them for the virtual show. Everyone did a great job, Shelby and Whitney got there when we were almost done and helped Jaxsen wash his steer.
Toni went and checked horses and took some pictures and video after she dropped her kids off with me. We had some people interested in seeing video of Whammy, Kitten, and Cue Tee, so we do have videos of those three if anyone wants to see them. She also got them uploaded to the website.
After lunch she started moving panels and getting things ready for the “new” fence project which is the rebuild of the weaning pen. Ben and Kicker were both down there a bit too. Ben had to fix Dad’s circle, then switched the bucket on the tractor for forks, then brought a load of grass straw down. Kicker came down later to help Toni pick up panels, bring the poles down, and help with clean-up around the house. We got down there and the kids started chores and Whitney, Shelby, Toni and I put poles up on the posts she had up. The kids got there before we were done, so Kaine and Kade stapled the mesh wire to the back sides of the wood posts and Anna helped put up poles Then we went to the Booth no Rodeo party. This was the first outing we have had in a long time. Everyone had too much fun.
Sunday we got the cows in and sorted off the Spokane steers, and weaned them, and doctored a few. The cows didn’t want to come in very bad, but eventually we got them to cooperate. We had people come out to look at Mayday, so Toni left and went to show them around. They ended up picking Mayday to purchase. Ben and I loaded the poles when we were done and I hauled the poles from our house down to mom and dads. The 3 older kids and I unloaded them, dug some post holes and planted some posts, and them put poles up until we ran out of battery power. Then the kids went and did chores. Coco went and got her puppy Sunday, a cute “cowboy mutt.” So we played with her for a bit. Then Toni got done selling horses, and the kids went to feed their steers and Toni and I put some more posts in the ground. We are starting to get into bad ground again, so the digging of holes takes a breaker bar and arm muscles, but we are getting it done. The biggest issue we are going to have with this fence is we are short on poles to put up and we can’t go get more until after September 25 when hop harvest is over. So we are just going to get done what we can, then go back to the last part of the continuous fence project, which is building the alley down to the corral.
School is right around the corner, it starts Monday. That really doesn’t look too different for us at this point because we are still in the distance learning phase. This is good in some ways, because the kids are home, they can do ranch work, but they don’t get to be kids and see their friends and be social. It will be interesting to see how this school year unfolds. For all of our sake, we hope school starts back with the kids actually going soon, otherwise I feel like these fencing projects are never going to end. And if you want to know how to put in a staple, here is an instructional video from Kaine.