Where has July gone? It just flew by. Sunday night we had confirmation that we would be ultrasounding on Wed. It was too late to do much Sunday, so we knew starting the week that we were going to have to get horses in, sort, and move them to mom and dad’s before Wed. Today had the boys help her move Dude’s pen to the back pasture at her house so they could get 2 dry mares out of there, Annie and an outside mare Monday afternoon. So those 2 mares got hauled Monday, 2 down, 2 to go. We were just lucky we had been moving mares lately so there were only 4 to gather up. Dad was harvesting in Kahlotus on Monday, Kaine and Kade moved his water for him after chores while Anna helped Toni and I work on the continuous fence. We got another section up. Then the kids went home to feed their steers and Anna texted that two horse pairs were out in the alfalfa. So Toni, Jaxsen and I only talked to mom for a few minutes before we went to see what was going on. Red Robin and Payton were out, they ran back in when they saw us coming, two heifers had gotten out and knocked a wire off so the fence was shorting out. I let Jaxsen drive the blazer along with us while we were walking the fence and he got it stuck in a circle track, which happens to the best of us, he did a pretty good job. He did tell me that next time I should pick someone to drive that knows the difference between the gas and the break. Maybe he needs more practice. Ben and Kicker came down and pulled us out and tried to help us get the two heifers in. We did get the fence back up and hot, so that curtailed the mares getting back out into the alfalfa.
Tuesday Toni and the kids got Sagebug’s pen in, sorted, and hauled some mares down to mom and dads to ultrasound on Wednesday. One of the mares being Dolly, and War Bug is WAY bigger when you are pushing him the trailer then he looks in the pasture, but he was super chill. The other mare was another outside mare with a filly out of Dude that is crazy fancy. Ben came over and helped load since loading foals can be hazardous if not done correctly. Sagebug is a young stud, but so great to handle and deal with. We have to bring his pen across a cattle pasture and into the alley to the corral to sort, and he just brings his mares right in, and takes them right back to his pasture. You really couldn’t ask for more out of a stud. The kids did chores, Toni and I put up another section of continuous fence, Anna came over to help when they got done with chores. Then, the three older kids went home to feed their steers and heifers. Kaine and Kade are digging a trench in the riding horse pen (an 8 in trench, not like a backhoe size trench) to bury the jump wire.
As I was on my way home it looked like Jackpot was acting weird, so I called Toni and told her we need to run out there, so she met me at the gate. Our old mare Sissy was starting to shut down. We thought she was going to die over the winter, were surprised when she had a foal and had not lost it when she got sick, Sissy has been an awesome mare. She is the mother to Pocket and Goldy and our friend John has two of her daughters, Sassy and Benny. We had been on the fence about keeping Dime since it was probably her last foal, so after getting Dime in, and Payton and Cue Tee since her and Cue Tee are attached at the hip, we decided that we were going to keep her. Although it is sad to lose these older mares, the reality is that there isn’t much we can do to stop time. When the end comes, we just keep them comfortable and do our best by them. We are just so lucky that Payton took Dime. We were coming up with plans on how to get Dime to get on feed, how we were going to keep her calm, and had kids and Kicker come out to help us as we did not want to put added stress on the filly. Payton just kept Dime with her the whole time and when we unloaded them into the corral, the first thing Dime did was start nursing. We had already been calling Dime and Cue Tee the Bobbsey twins because they are always together in the field and look almost identical, both out of Bishop. Payton continues to amaze us on how well she keeps track of them both. Dime had some minor stress looking for Sissy, but hasn’t lost weight and is coming through this much better than anyone could expect.
Ben went down to weld one of the gates up on our continuous fence, but ran out of gas in the generator while he was down there. So that project is continued for another day. But it meant that he was at the corral when we got there to unload Payton and the fillies, so he helped with that. You can’t have enough hands-on deck when you are trying to keep a filly calm when she has just lost her mother.
Wednesday was another fun day. Toni and the kids went down to mom and dad’s early to get the pasture in and sort off mares for ultrasounding. They had to move panels around to make extra pens. One mare had to be caught and brought over from Double’s pen. 2 additional outside mares were coming in, so room had to be found for everyone’s trailers and space to turn around. In the end we had 13 mares to get through the stocks. Chores got done prior. Allie was fast, we had 4 outside mars in addition to ours, and everything went great. Cammie was the only one open that we thought would be bred, of ours, one outside mare was also open, and Chad put her back in with King before he left. Barb was also open, but that isn’t a huge shock. We are taking her into the vet to get a culture and figure out why she isn’t breeding. Piper D was open, but due to her injury in May, also not a shock. Piper D was only with Leroy for 5 days, so we would have been more shocked if she was bred. Cammie we are going to try breeding to Colonel, King might have just been too young to get it figured out on how to breed a mare that does not want you near her foal. But that is ok, he is still young. The kids left right before we got done to go and feed their steers and heifers, the three older kids are a lot of help. Dime, Cue Tee and Payton are all doing great. Chad asked if Payton had twins, the fillies look that much alike. Toni wanted to trick him and tell him yes, but Anna let the cat out of the bag. We had lots of helpers for the ultrasounding, our kids, Chad and Shawna’s three little boys, and the Kane kids to see if their mare was bred. It is really fun for the kids to look at the ultrasound screen and see the foal. Dad was officially done with harvest on Wednesday.
Thursday was a little cooler and overcast in the morning. The “twins” were doing great on Thursday, Payton is taking good care of them. Toni was going to take the kids swimming at Tom and Peg’s but the weather was just junky. Instead Mom came over to my house and Toni, Mom, and the kids looked at the Canadian mares, looked at Beebee, the steers, the bottle calves, the fence, just showed Mom all the stuff we have been doing. We continued work on our continuous fence after chores. We are making a lot of progress. The kids went and fed their steers and heifers. We actually got home right before 8 pm Thursday night, so our earliest night that week.
Friday the four kids and I tied up the home-grown steers and took them to the wash rack for the first time. They did really good considering how little we have worked on them, since we did not know what the show status would be. Two of Jaxsen’s are actually out of his cows, and Loud’s calf, Necros, is just amazing. Jax can even handle him. Then the kids washed and worked on their heifers and clubby steers. After lunch we went down and continued working on our continuous fence.
Saturday Ruby came down and worked on the steers with the kids. We had some people come out and look at our miniature filly, she was looking for a pet, so she is going to take Vegas, a retired mare, instead. We also have people out looking at Dolly, War Bug and KAD.
Then in the afternoon Julia and her boyfriend came out to see Blue Bug. The kids and I switched pastures with the cows after we got done working on the steers and heifers. We tied the home-grown steers up again and led them around, they did great. Toni and I had forgotten that Chad was coming out to trim, luckily, he texted that he was on his way, so Anna, Kaine, Kade and I ran down and got horses in right before he got there. We have enough maintenance horses that there is always a list that needs done. And we wanted to get Colonel and Double done before fall. Toni and Anna also wanted to get Splinter’s fronts trimmed, but had failed to get him halter broke. They worked on Splinter for 10 minutes with a halter and claimed he was good enough for Chad to trim. Chad is a miracle worker and got Splinter trimmed up, but Splinter is really good. We wanted to get a few more mares trimmed, but Chad wanted to go home before midnight, so we put the rest on hold and started chores. Ben started welding up the gates in the vet pen and we realized we made too big of a hole for one of them. The solution was to bring down an oversized gate so that gate doesn’t swing both ways. We put up more fence and got ready for Sunday when we planned to cement in a big post for another gate. Ben is very good with fabrication and welding, so was able to work around our poles that were up and in place. We just had one gate that we had to redrill a hinge hole for. We got that gate back up which made the corral officially done!
We had two people scheduled to come out Sunday morning, one was late and one texted that they were not going to make it and could they just send a deposit. Toni had gone down early and got Cue to the house, so while she was waiting for his buyers, Dad and Mom came out and instructed her on how to put in the hitching rail that needed replaced in front of the saddle shed. She did not feel she needed instruction, but the hitching rail did go up how Dad wanted, so I am pretty sure he won that one. Cue loaded great and was on his way. Our friend Jeannie showed up from Central Ferry to bring Toni some paperwork and stayed for a visit. Mom always makes fresh cookies for Jeannie and Sonny, so she whipped up a batch before Jeannie headed home. Ben, Anna and Kaine went and got hay at Davis’, they are nice two tie alfalfa bales, they also have grass, if anyone needs their number just shoot me a PM. Ben and Kicker came down and we all worked on the continuous fence for most of the rest of the day. Ben welded up gates, we cemented in another metal post for another gate, then Toni, the kids and I continued on with the fence. We also made a creep feeder for the “twins.” After chores, Toni went and got our new-used drill press from Toby and Kendel so they could continue to put holes in the continuous fence clips. Kameron came and got his heifers picked up that we had bred for him.
As of Sunday night, all gates were up that could go up, the 13-foot railroad tie was topped, and we are ½ done with the outside of the alley going across the colt pen. We are extremely pleased to have the corral done. It is in full use with 2 studs, Payton, and the twins in it, so it wasn’t done too soon!