We are starting the last week of October and hitting our stride on weaning and getting stuff halter broke.

Monday was supposed to be the nicest day all week, getting up 70, and then gradually going down all week, or not so gradually since it is supposed to be 40 by Sunday. We call this Pneumonia weather, as it sometimes results in our livestock getting sick when there is such a big jump in temperature. Especially for the stuff we just weaned that is already under stress.  Monday on my way to work my phone starts going crazy, when I got to work I sat in the parking lot for 10 mins responding to everyone, I give myself 20 extra min in case when I go by mom and dads something is going on and I need to stop. 1. Kaine forgot Monday was picture day and forgot to give me the form, so I just had him fill it out and get some cash. 2. The brand inspector could come out Monday, but I did not leave her a check since I was not expecting her to come out Monday, so we rescheduled for next Monday, Toni was gong to come out and meet her. 3. The mineral and protein blocks could get delivered, yes, just put them by the hay stack. 4. Other work-related items a. I am running late, will be in late, b. I won’t be in at all, etc. I would say a typical Monday. Toni also emailed that she was having a similar Monday, of items she had sent out Friday that people wanted again because they did not remember they had them, or it was they needed to respond, etc. Pam, owner of Coy, came out on her monthly jaunt to see him. Her son Jeremiah came with her and the foals were all really interested in him. He was a good sport and let them smell and sniff him. Toni and the kids started halter breaking the next group of foals, Blue Bug, Mayday, and Cue Tee, they said they did really well. Anna is the only one that rode her two year old.  Kade needed a boy break and stayed in the back yard with Kaine and Jax wrestling or whatever it is they do. It involves lots of screaming. Toni has run back there a couple of times and the boys look at her like she is crazy when she asks what is wrong. So I guess boys faux fight and that is normal. We got a load of protein blocks and mineral Monday night, and of course the Case would not start, so Ben came home from work to put the hay forks on the Trojan and unload them. According to Toni, all tractors are at my house at this point, so if we need one at mom and dads we have to go get one of them. Kind of interesting considering there are 2 tractors and a loader, how many need to be on one side of the ranch? Maybe spread them out a bit for others to use? Also interesting, both tractors are not running very well, one needs a new starter, which we just replaced in March, and the other is having battery issues, so only the loader runs reliably.

Tuesday was a little cooler, and a little darker. However, the sun came out and it turned into a beautiful day. Toni was supposed to take Blue Bug and Rooster (Rooster is a calf) into see Sheena at Sagehill Vet, Blue Bug needed a hernia clamp and Rooster needed to become a steer.  However, Sheena texted that her afternoon opened up, so bring Blue Bug, Rooster, Splinter, and Mayday so we could get the coggins, health, and brand done as well. Emma, Toni’s legal assistant, and Anna helped load and went in with her. Rooster hadn’t been haltered before, but was a bottle calf, so was pretty easy to handle. Blue Bug, Splinter, and Mayday all acted like they knew what they were doing. All loaded great, unloaded great. No one would have guessed that Blue Bug and Mayday only started getting halter broke on Sunday. Blue Bug and Rooster got left there for the night, Splinter and Mayday came home after they had their blood taken and were inspected. As Tuesday was our last night home, Ben and Kicker were busy getting stuff done for us to be gone, so the steers didn’t get tied up.  Anna was nervous about leaving all of her animals, but gave Toni instruction on all she needed to do.

Wednesday we are headed to Idaho to see Ben’s family and bring home our new Idaho Shagg. So, the rest is Toni. It will be fun to get a new take on things, however, it is not totally new since after I get done typing I send it to Toni to proof.

Toni- So Wednesday morning was my first Bankruptcy Appellate Panel (BAP) argument. Luckily I just got to be co-counsel and didn’t have to argue, so just had to help get ready, and lose sleep over it. It was cool to be able to watch it in real time. Then I had 2 more hearings in district court. Once all of that was done, then I headed to Othello to grab Blue Bug and Rooster. Rooster loads like a 2 year old child you are trying to put in a car seat. He is haltered (yes, still a calf), but throws himself down or goes backward when you feel like you are making progress. He is big enough that the loading, especially on my own at the vet, was problematic, but it got done. Blue Bug is a good loader. Got home in the rain and thankfully, Marlo rolled in to help me with chores. Neither her nor I were wearing a coat, why would we wear a coat at the end of Oct? We went and borrowed coats to wear over our sweatshirts from Mom and got to it. It was Jax’s bday so he had friends over and got out of his minor chores for the day. Kade, Marlo, and I did chores, worked on the foals, and then went to Kellie’s to finish chores.

Thursday I had an emergency hearing in the morning. I was also trying to get gravel delivered and everyone organized to regravel mom and dad’s driveway as it is a bumpy mess and feels like it is full of speedbumps. About 1 pm, Shanan and Pete arrived to get Splinter. Splinter wasn’t in love with the trailer, but he got in. It is good to see the foals go to their new homes, but hard too. When chore time rolled around the gravel was delivered, now it needs to be evened out. Both of the fillies did well with their leading lesson and got tied up as well for a few minutes. Kade and I got chores done, then went to Kellie’s and did those chores. At 6:30 pm I got a chance to talk to one of our AQHA Youth, Kaylee, about her expectations of the Youth program. We have 2 girls again this year. We haven’t determined with colt goes to which youth, but we are working on it.

Friday morning dawned cold and had that overcast snowy look.  It snowed all around us, but we just saw some of that watery white crap that is almost like snow, but we aren’t calling it snow. Kick went down and started scraping the gravel on the driveway to make it nice. Kade, Jax, and I did chores, which now includes draining hoses.  I led the fillies out into the driveway while Kick was using the box scraper to see how they would react and they both did really well. After chores, I went ahead and drained the irrigation hoses and moved the irrigation sprinklers, because really, what else would a person do on a Friday night? I haven’t told Mom and Dad but my dog bites the hoses when I move them because she thinks it is a game. So basically we are going to need new ones in the spring. Good thing they don’t read the blog, I think it is funny that she does it. It would be really cool if I could teach her to move the irrigation sprinklers while I stand at the edge of the field and point, but I am not sure she is up to it. I mean yeah, I do think she is the best dog ever, smartest dog that ever lived, but she is a dog.  After I was done with that, we went to Kellie’s for her chores.  I am hoping that we don’t get snow. I hate snow. Then I went home to make lasagna and clean my house because Sherri and Barry were going to come over on Saturday. When I undertake the making of lasagna I try to make one extra to put in the freezer. The best lasagna is one I already made.

Saturday was cold. That is the only word I can use. Barry and Sherri came over for a nice visit. Sherri makes this great strawberry pretzel salad that the boys call heaven salad. We devoured it. I worked in my office after that listening to the wind blow. Then I put on layers of clothing and headed out. Kade did chores while I loaded the 2 fillies, weaned Whammy, got Ro and Ellie in to be hauled out, and fed grain at the house. Kade and I had put together a to do list for this weekend, but after our hands were so cold we couldn’t feel them anymore, we agreed to take some stuff off of it. The fillies loaded great and are ready to head out. Cue Tee may stay a little longer due to the pass report. We are always willing to keep foals a little extra if the weather is bad. As I was sitting in the pick-up trying to find incentive to get out and unload the mares, I realized that Kellie planned this pretty well. 35 degrees with a wicked wind from the North, and she is on vacation.  I need to strategize better in the future. On a funny note, somehow a door got left open at Kellie’s house and when Marlo got there multiple cats had taken up residence. Some of them are not tame. I tried to get one of the wild ones out (it had already bitten Marlo), but it is a good hider. So Kellie and Ben get to come home to random cats living with them.

Sunday morning Jax wanders in (Kick and Kade had left) and told me some man with red or brown hair drove up while I was getting dressed. Pretty soon the phone rings and it is Marlo and her pick-up is broke down on the road. Marlo is not a man, and she is very blond. Jax’s powers of observation may be lacking. She didn’t think we were home so had left and made it a little down the road before the pick-up really died. Jax and I went down and towed her back to our house. As we waited for Kicker to get home we had a good chat and I made her some hot coco. She was in leggings and crocks and seemed a little cold. Kick got back, popped the hood, and out popped a cat. The cat was fine, just wild, and had knocked a belt off and some other stuff. Kick got the pick-up up and running and Marlo headed home. The cat is hopefully in our shop area. I tried to catch it with no success. After that I went down to load Mayday out for Austin and Grace. We always wait and catch the foals while the new owners are here so they can see our process and see how we switch the halter, etc. I tied Cue Tee up and got Mayday out and ready to load into the new, rubber smelling, piled high with shavings, trailer. She loaded great.  There has been a tiny bit of drama surrounding Mayday. This spring we had decided we needed to keep a Leroy foal. Last year we decided if Ro had a filly, we would keep it. Well she did, she had mean Jean. We all love mean Jean. Except Kellie, she may not love her, but whatever. Piper then has Mayday, also out of Leroy. We went back and forth about if we should keep her too. Finally we decided we can’t keep them all, Austin and Grace came up and bought her. Mayday weaned really well and the first day we put the halter on, I was like, crap, we should have kept her. I have just loved that filly. She has been an absolute typical Leroy foal, just the best. They trust, they are smart, they are pretty, move amazing, but aren’t overly hot. For example, I needed to load her to take her to the vet for coggins, brand, and health. We put the halter on Sunday, hauled her to the vet on Tuesday. Monday was the first day I really got to lead her around. So 1 day. She loaded, I held her while they took blood, she came home, unloaded and walked calmly back to her pen. All I am saying that mean Jean had better be perfect, or I am really going to be in a bad mood. After Mayday left Dad and I weaned the two Canadian foals, Black Eye and Kitty. I put Crossfire into the halter breaking pen with Cue Tee. Left Mom and Dad’s and came home and had duck breast. No one can say I am not supportive of my child. Got his first duck and I ate some of it. Barf.

We don’t have any foals leaving next weekend, so we have a bye week. That doesn’t mean we aren’t halter breaking. We are going to start Whammy and Slider. We are leaning towards those two being our Youth foals. Got those two haltered and dewormed. Then Kade and I started chores. Kick showed up with some grass straw to put out. Kade and I caught Jojo and gave her zimectrin gold, then turned her out in the big pasture. I am sick of her beating up the regular sized yearlings because she is so big. Then we caught Colonel and tied him up. Caught King, pulled hair for DNA, dewormed him, took a couple of pictures, then tied him up. Then we caught Gangster, dewormed him, took some pictures, then did the same with Tank and Shiner. We turned the yearling colts back out in their pen, King had untied himself, so Kade caught him and we put him back, then we let Colonel go. At that point it was getting dark and Kellie, Ben, Anna and Kaine had gotten home.

Wow, another week done. We are starting the last week of October and hitting our stride on weaning and getting stuff halter broke. As long as the weather holds out we might be ok.

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