It feels like with every month of 2020 there is a new version of normal

Monday if definitely felt like fall. All 4 kids were in school, Anna had tennis practice, for preseason practice, so she rode the activity bus. RDO called Toni and they had the part for the post hole digger, so they wanted to come out and fix it. Toni was waiting at my house, with the tractor, and the mechanic went to mom and dads, so it took a while to figure out where everyone was. Toni petted her pocket cat while she waited, yes, an actual cat. She went back to work, then had to go back again because Chester, Kaine’s weirdo border collie, got in the technician’s pick-up and wouldn’t get out. This is a dog that we do not put in vehicles. He won’t even ride in the back of a vehicle, let alone the front. He likes to run along side, or run around the vehicle as it is moving. I guess he decided we needed that pick-up so was staking his claim. Luckily he was coaxed out with no biting or any other bad behavior. Toni started on Sugar and Easter Monday, next group, both fillies are going to John Gray. Toni, Kade and Kaine also saddled Jitterbug, Charlie and Jag, they left Jag saddled for Anna to work on when she got home from tennis practice. All three did great. Kade also braided Jitterbug’s mane. Kaine and Anna went home and let the Spokane steers go and helped Ben feed grain. Ben had Lynn and Andee (the dogs) helping him fix circle and with chores. He said they were not much help filling up buckets or opening gates.

Tuesday was rainy and we had a wind warning, on the radio they actually said if you have a trampoline tie it down. Toni and the kids worked on halter breaking and saddling their two year olds, they did remarkably well in the wind. The kids wanted to ride in the wind, but we are trying to keep this training process very positive and thought that might be pushing it. Poor Sally is left out of training because she is so tall no one wants to mess with her. Too high up there. Ben, Anna and Kaine tied up the Spokane steers and the heifers. We let them go when we got home after chores.

Wednesday was a much nicer day than Tuesday. Wednesday night Toni worked on teaching the kids and the two year olds how to lunge, it sounded like quite the experience. The good news is that all the pupils did get it figured out eventually. Kade felt it was a worthless exercise. His lazy horse felt the same.  Ben, Anna and Kaine tied the steers and heifers up, when I got home they had most of the heifers turned loose. We led the three Cox heifers over to their pen, Anna’s is Lottie Dino, I can called Kade’s Calamity Jane until he names her (since his other heifer is Annie Oakley) and Kaine’s does not have a name yet. Then we turned the Spokane steers loose, Kade’s was having a bad day, so stood tied up until he settled down. 

Thursday was a beautiful fall day. Anna had tennis practice after school. Toni had a Zoom call with DOE. Toni, Kaine and Kade worked on the two year olds and the foals they are halter breaking after school.  Because Anna was gone, Kaine rode Jag, which is good for both of them. Luckily Jag is short because Kaine is big. Toni actually made Kade help Kaine to get on. The kids are still riding bareback. Jag is making more progress than Jitter. But they are both doing exceptional. Toni took Kaine home so he could do chores there. Ben tied up the heifers and steers. I picked Anna up off of the activity bus and then we went home and the three of us let the steers and heifers go.

Friday was a little breezy, but not had. Toni was getting times set up for foals to leave on Saturday, Easter, Sugar and Hero were all going to their new homes. We also had someone scheduled to come out and look at horses. Toni and the kids worked on the horses and got everyone ready to go.

Saturday was a beautiful day. We got the steers and heifers tied up first thing. Toni and I went down to load out Hero, then we moved Louie and Lightening bug to the house. I went back to hep Ben and Kicker work calves, the kids were washing their show animals. Toni stayed to show those two and the foals. Dad, mom and Uncle Skip went to town to get KFC for dinner, that is what Jax wanted for this birthday. Toni sold Louie and got him loaded and out. We got the bull calves and the odds and ends around the house worked. Then we sorted the heifers into keep, sell as bred heifers, and feeder heifers. It is super hard to pick which ones to keep and which ones to sell when you are really loving your breeding program and can’t keep them all. We had to go through the heifers three times to get our numbers where we need them. If we had more land, we could keep more, but land has a high cost. If anyone wants weanling heifers, we have some really fancy ones. A couple would make show heifers. We have reg angus, reg hereford, and some b/w heifers for sale. And of course we have the bull calves for sale as well. After we discussed which heifers we were going to keep into the ground,  we did chores. We had Ben and Jaxsen’s birthday with Uncle Skip Saturday night and had KFC and bacon wrapped shrimp, per Jaxsen’s request.

                Sunday we loaded John and Raven first thing. Ben, Kicker, Anna, Kaine, Kade and Jaxsen started working the big group of calves. Toni and I got down to help, so we moved the show calves across the road for the kids to wash. Ben and Kicker still have to lead 2 of the steers. They are getting better, but Toni keeps saying we need to find some replacement steers. We will see. The heifers are all really good and the other steers are really good. Jax can even lead his heifer. When we force him. He was supposed to be helping wash, but we could here him up at the washrack yapping.  We got all of the calves worked by early afternoon. After we got done working the calves we got Leroy’s pen in and hauled the mares and foals to the house and weaned the two foals. We put Leroy and Pinky back down after we wormed them. Marlo showed up at mom and dads to help, we got a group of horses in and hauled 9 head out. We got Blue Bug, Cue Tee and Mayday in to halter break. The boys and I hauled the horses out while Marlo, Anna and Toni got halters on. Then the kids did chores while we finished up some stuff out front and then we went in for pie.

                We are all starting to get into a routine with Kade and Jax going to school everyday and Anna and Kaine twice per week. Ben is done with harvest, Kick is almost done, Dad is almost done. Hopefully when all of our harvest work is done, there is still a little time to get work done before winter hits with a vengeance. The corn by the house is being harvested now, which means we will probably work the cows the first of Nov and get them turned out on cornstalks. It is hard to believe we are almost to the end of 2020. In some ways this year has seemed to drag on, in other ways it is hard to believe another year is gone.

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