The first full week in October has been a beautiful week. The weather has been wonderful. Monday all 4 kids had school, they are still reporting it is boring. But Kade likes it in 6th grade, you don’t have the same teacher all day, and the teachers rotate. Kaine likes Jr high and sees a mixture of friends throughout the day, and not the same ones. Toni and the kids did chores, the three older kids and Toni worked on the foals that we are halter breaking. This week we will be working on six, yes six, foals. The good news is that Howa just needs extra time, Splinter and Hero are the same. So three out of the six are just continuation, and the other three are awesome. Normally we keep the halter breaking foals in the round pen, but these we are leaving out in the weanling pen and bringing in everyday, except Howa. Howa is a companion to Crossfire since we put Lizzie down. Jag and Jitterbug came in Monday, so Anna sat on Jag and Kade sat on Jitterbug. Sally did not come in, so Kaine was just Toni’s assistant. We were waiting for Brett to come through Ritzville with Kaine’s steer from Montana, but Brett was late so we decided to go to Ephrata and pick him up on Tuesday. Gunner got out with the weaned calves Monday night, he had great fun chasing them around and cornering them up on the hill, they did not think it was quite as much fun. The kids called Toni so she came down and attempted to call him back in. He was a firm no. After Toni walked out there, he knew he was caught so he walked back to him pen. But he waited until Toni went all the way to the far side of the pen before he decided to be good.
Tuesday Kade and Jaxsen had school. Toni had court early, but was home early since they still aren’t scheduling trials and going to court is a waste of time. I got off of work at noon and Anna, Kaine and I headed to Ephrata to get the steer. We got lost, our Google Map did not work with the pin that Brett sent, so we ended up 20 miles north and had to back track, but we finally got to his house. Kaine loves his steer. We looked at Cora’s steer, the couple extra Brett got, the heifers he is taking to Evergreen, the bull he got from Krebs, then we headed home. Toni, Kade and Jaxsen worked on the two year olds and foals, I think mainly Toni and Kade, but I was not there, Jaxsen might have helped. Kicker was doing chores at my house when we got home, Toni said she was almost done, so we stayed and helped there. We put Anna’s bottle calf, Mattie, in with the steer, and they were happy. Tuesday night Buckely texted and Brad might be bringing the show heifers up on Thursday, so the kids are really excited.
Wednesday Toni had hearings in Kennewick , which were civil, so she actually made some progress on some cases, and meetings all over, so she was running around. The kids and Toni are making great progress on the foals that are getting halter broke. The foals all come in really well, get haltered well, and lead exceptionally well. Howa is still a bit difficult to catch, but once caught, is a rock. Crossfire is still the boss of the pen, even though he is half her size. Kade and Anna have been working on Jitterbug and Jag every night and really making progress. These are great 2 year olds for the kids to have as their first 2 year olds to start. Jitter and Jag are very calm, smart, and non-reactive. Dad always made us start 2 year olds bareback with a halter. He said that way you can’t get hung up in the saddle if you get bucked off, and if you need a bridle in the roundpen to get them to flex, then get off and do more ground work. Jag just turned 2 in Sept, so this is just a slow and easy process for both the 2 year olds and the kids. Both of these kids are just loving the process. Kaine could work on Sally, but she is so big none of us want to put him up there. Kaine’s other 2 year old, Pow, is getting professionally trained with our good friend Rachael in So. Cal. But Kaine is being a good sport about helping.
Thursday Brad brought the heifers and cow while the kids were in school, Toni went up and unloaded them and had a good chat with Brad. Brad also brought a Sim bull for a guy in Ephrata so the bull got unloaded and reloaded at our corral. Toni accidentally put a cat in the trailer with the bull, but the bull was getting tired of being hauled, so no one wanted to unload the bull to get the cat. Getting cattle from Brad and Buckley brought that small world connection around, as Brad roomed with Grandpa in 1983 at the Hereford Convention. Buckley was kind enough to send the three older kids bags from the fitting clinic that Traynham’s had before their sale. Anna, Kaine and Kade were really excited the heifers were here and they all changed which ones they wanted, before they had picked from the videos. They were still doing chores when I got home, because they had been up looking at the heifers, but they were almost done.
Friday Kaine, Anna and I ran down to Musser Bros and got the dog kennel I won in the auction. We went to Chinese Gardens and brought Chinese home. We stopped at Basin City Hardware on our way home and picked up some RubberMaid water troughs. We stopped at Toni’s house for lunch and then went home and tied up the heifers and steers. Whitney stopped on her way home and helped us tie up, it was good for the Spokane steers to see someone new. I ran down and got Kade and Jaxsen off of the bus at 3:30. We had a couple out to look at three of the colts at 3:30, and our friend John stopped by for a visit on his way through. The three older kids, Whitney and I took the three new heifers, Kaine’s new steer and Byron around the driveway for a walk about. They all did great. The kids, Whitney, and I showed up in time to chat with Toni and John before chores. Whitney had not met John before and during their discussion they realized that John graduated high school the same year Whitney was born. Probably why they don’t know each other. Since Whitney was there and we had 6 foals we were halter breaking, we had Whitney take a picture of us lined up with the 6. Crossfire ran out the gate, so he was in a few of them as well. It was starting to get cool out, so the two year olds were full of themselves, but still did good. Ben wanted the tractor home, so we sent the kids home in Toni’s pick-up and Toni drove the tractor back to my house after chores. Luckily the lights on the tractor kind of worked.
Saturday Toni, Kade and I ran into Othello to the Cow Path Pop up bakery and got some bakery items, then we stopped at Cecil’s house on the way home and picked up Ivy, Stinia and Spicy and brought them home. Cecil always has an obstacle course of vehicles and equipment for us to back the trailer into to load out. Toni sees it as a challenge. All loaded well and unloaded well. Poor Ivy is now with the old horses and is no longer able to mother the minis. Of course the minis are two, so they don’t need a mother. Anna, Kaine and Ben were moving calves around at the house. Next we went down and tied up the heifers and steers, and then it was lunch time. 2 of the club calf steers aren’t progressing very well, so there is talk that we may need to get 2 more steers in and start fresh. We were going to start working some of the calves but it was really rainy. When it was time for chores I decided to put a halter on Crossfire and get him started with the halter breaking process. As he is a spoiled baby, he did not like it, but after his fit, he was good. So that was number 7 foal for the week getting halter broke.
Sunday morning Toni, Kade and I went down and loaded up Shiny Bug and Java to their new homes. They loaded great. Next, we brought Howa and Crossfire across the road, Howa was leaving too, she also loaded great. I am not sure who was leading who when we took Crossfire and put him with the other weanlings, but progress is being made on getting him halter broke. Now he is with the other weanling foals and Double has his bigger pen back and his protein tub. Ben, Anna and Kaine tied up the steers and heifers. They also got the cows in and sorted off the registered bred Angus heifers, we had someone coming out to look at them. After lunch Toni, Kaine, Kade, Jaxsen and I went down and got the horses in out of circle 6, Ben and Anna showed the heifers and sold our reg bred heifers. We hauled the pairs back to mom and dads, we are out of wormer until Tuesday, so we did not haul any out. Marlo came down and helped, she had made some cookies for us. We weaned Cue Tee, one of the twins, Blue Bug, Fast and Mayday. We got Easter and Sugar in and haltered them as they are our victims this week. We put Peyton and Dime in the lame/old horse pen. We put Hottie in Peyton’s pen, wormed Pepper and turned her out with the other dry mares, then went home to let steers and heifers go. Lastly, we made Ben for a birthday dinner and Marlo stayed and ate with us.
The weekend brought on the fall weather. We have to be happy to have the rain, but that Indian summer was just the best. It feels like 2020 had a long, over drawn-out winter, then this slow summer that never really felt quite like summer. Having summer weather in October is just par for the course at this point.