Posts Tagged With: #ranchingsummer

I always like to remind myself, that things could be worse. No matter the situation

            So, since the kids and I were in Nebraska all week, Toni has been in charge of many things, including the blog post. On July 9th I sent her what I had so far, since I was flying our early the next day, and she had to finish it and write all below. So here is what Toni, Ben, Kicker, Jaxsen, Mom, Dad and sometimes Kendel did all week:

            I always like to remind myself, that things could be worse. No matter the situation, I always say, well it could be worse. Monday was going to be very busy. Started out with some girls from New Jersey out to see the horses while they visited family in Othello. After we got done at Mom’s, we only had time to look at one stud pen. They picked Sagebug, because he is funny. When we got down to the pen, I noticed that the fence looked wonky, but wasn’t too worried about it. When we got out into the field, we discovered that Can Can had somehow got the two wire hot fence completely wrapped around her ankle four times. It looked pretty bad. I cut the fence, but that didn’t help. I couldn’t get the fence off of her leg. So, I ran the people back to their vehicle, called for reinforcements, which were Kendel on her six-wheeler, and Mom and Jaxsen in Kaine’s blazer. We got the entire pen in, put them in the corral, and started trying to sort Can Can out to try and get the wire off of her leg. We could not get her sorted with her mother, but luckily, she sorted with Bebe her aunt. Bebe has been injured a time or two so was actually the perfect horse to keep her calm and allow us to try to get the wire off.  Can Can was rock solid, never kicked or got worked up, and eventually we somehow got the wire off of her leg. I am so thankful to have Kendel as a neighbor and cousin to help and of course, Mom is a godsent. After we got the wire off, Can Can back with her mom, and the the horses in a corral pen, I had to get home, get the dirt, sweat, and other stuff wiped off of me, put a suit and a pair of earrings, and head to the meeting I was supposed to be headed to 30 minutes earlier. On the way I called Coco to tell her all about it, and she graciously said she would go down and get the fence fixed.  I got home at 5:30ish, changed back into work clothes and headed back to the barn. Ben, Kicker, and I shorted Shiney and Can Can out, then moved the rest of the horses back to their pen. Ben and I gave Can Can a couple of shots, really examined her leg, put some topical on, then loaded Shiney and Can Can to move them to Mom and Dad’s to a smaller pen to watch for infection.

After the debacle of Saturday, with Jaxsen and I doing chores on our own and my almost getting heat exhaustion, Monday could have been worse. First off, I decided to pare down chores to make it a bit easier. Secondly, Coco was there to help with chores. It was still super-hot, but chores went much better. After chores we went back to the barn, helped Ben and Kicker sort a cow and calf out that we were selling, and sort our big herd bull out and pull him out of the cows. Monday was a really long day.

Tuesday continued to be hot, but things went well. Can Can’s leg was swollen, but she was walking on it fine. We decided to leave her in the pen to keep watching her. Chores were pretty mundane. I had to push bales off the stack so Jax likes to pretend it is an Olympic game and score my ability to get the bales on the trailer or if I miss then I get no points.

Wednesday Ben hauled the cow and calf into the vet to get them ready to leave for their new home, vet inspection, brand inspection, etc. The cow ended up being open, but the people wanted her anyway, so that worked out. Mom came out and drove the four-wheeler for chores. She didn’t think she had driven it before, but it is pretty basic. No shifting required and if I am throwing hay off the back, try not to be jerky and knock me off. After chores we went down to help Ben and Kicker. I wanted Jax to help Ben lead the steers but he would only lead his own. He said the other ones were “too wild.” I am really unclear how he figures that, but Ben let him get away with it. When I got down to the barn, Ben was working and Jax was sitting in the rocking chair talking to the bottle calf Rollin.

Thursday Dad was done with work for the week, so he helped with chores. Dad is helping the Moore family with wheat harvest like he does every year. This year was an abbreviated harvest due to the drought. Thursday afternoon the family from Sandpoint was going to come pick up their cow and calf. They got stuck in traffic on the way down, so they ended up getting here way later than they had planned. They had three little kids, so I took them around to pet the mini horses, donkey, regular horses, calves, cats, giant dog, and whatever else Kellie has accumulated at her house. They really liked the cow and were excited to get her home. She is a pretty tame cow so was a really good fit for their family.

Friday we were supposed to have people out to look at horses but they canceled. Marlo showed up to help with chores, so Jax was pretty happy. He was less happy when we were done with chores and she made him go work on his steer and help with the other steers. He tried to convince her he couldn’t work on the other steers, but she didn’t buy into his logic and made him actually help with the other steers. They aren’t wild. After they got the steers turned lose, they cleaned the barn, then came home for dinner.

Saturday everyone was just trying to play catch-up on all the things that needed to get done. Gunner was out again, so Jax and I went down to fix that fence. I got a splinter up under my fingernail, but luckily it was long enough I could jerk it out.  Jax and I had to fix the cross fence and the main fence, but we got it done. I think Jax is getting better at helping.  Then Dad decided we needed to fix the trailer tire and we wrecked it.  The tire was pretty iffy anyway, and we broke off some of the lugs holding it on the wheel, so we got chores done, but decided to fix it for good before we loaded hay back on it. We had bought a trailer, new to us, and pretty new overall so Dad, Jax, and I went and got it on Saturday afternoon. It is big, but lighter than our Titan, so easier to pull for the smaller loads. And it is red so Dad likes the color.

Sunday I figured I had better finish getting everything checked before Kellie got home. Jax and I started out at Leroy’s pen, and right off I knew it was going to be a long day. We knew that pen was pretty close to out of feed, but with the heat, they needed to be moved. Jax wanted to go raid his aunt’s pop inventory before we got started on any real work, so we headed back to her house to set the gates before we got the pen in. Jax found himself a nice water and a caffeinated drink that I made him put back.  Before we got Leroy’s pen in, I thought we should go check Sagebug to make sure he was in, because if he isn’t in, then he could run the fenceline we were going to run Leroy up. It was a good thing we went out to check, because Sagebug’s pen was out and the cows were standing in the gate to his pen.  I made Jax get out and chase stuff out of the gate, then we got Bug’s pen in, but they went very easily. Leroy’s pen didn’t come in so easily. Lona, mom’s mare, likes to take the herd the wrong way if she thinks you want her to go to the house.  Words may have been said, we will leave it at that. After we got them in, we sorted Leroy out and moved him to a solo pen, so his breeding season is over. We loaded the mares and foals into the new trailer and took them to greener pastures. As the summer heats up, as we run out of feed, we will continue to move the mares and foals back to mom and dads to get ready for weaning. It is much easier if they are all condensed into one area. Because Jackpot, Sagebug, and Gunner are on irrigated pastures with lots of grass, they are the last pens to be moved normally.

Once we completed the Leroy move, we went ahead and did chores. Ben and Dad had put new lugs on the tire, so the chore trailer is once again operational. Got water moved, horses worked on, everything fed. We moved Can Can and Shiney over with the old mares so Can Can can use that leg more. It looks decent but we are still watching it. Chores were complete so Jax and I went out to finish checking the rest of the horses and the calves. We finished about 8 pm, but I felt confident I hadn’t let anything die on my watch. Kellie got home about 8:30ish I hear, so we once again share the burden.

            As a reward, Mom made these fantastic raspberry cinnamon rolls with a homemade raspberry sauce. They are amazing.

It was a long week.

            Back to me (Kellie), the kids, Jay, Leslie, Traci and I had a lot of fun in Nebraska. The kids included the Twins (McCall and McKenna), Anna, Kaine, Kade, Natalie, Savannah and Kayla. Saturday Traci, the three younger kids and I should have beaten the other 7 there by an hr, but with all of the delays they beat us there by an hr. Basically Saturday and Sunday we set up everything, washing the heifers and got ready for the week. While in Nebraska the kids participated in Livestock Judging, Kaine and Natalie both got 6th in different divisions. Kaine and Kade were in the same division, and Kade got 29th out of around 100 kids and Anna got 49th in a different division out of about 150 kids. They all participated in the knowledge bowl except Natalie, and the senior team, the Twins, Kacey V. and Sydney R. made it to the final round. The final round is like a jeopardy round. The 4 younger kids did the skill a thon and the two boys did Team Sales with Cora T. and Hadlee B. They had a lot of fun. The kids also went to a social and met lots of new people. The 4 younger kids participated in the mentor program. They showed their heifers and all showed great. We shopped in the booths and had a grand time. The Twins flew back with us, and Leslie, Jay, Anna, Kaine and Kade drove back. It was actually more like 9:22 when I got home.  

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And just when you thought it could not get any hotter.

It is HOT HOT HOT outside.  Anna rode Kadee and Kade rode Slick first thing Monday morning, after feeding the show animals and getting them tied up under the fans. They washed after. We got their Nile Heifer videos submitted, applications in the mail. The kids did chores and then went up to take care of their show animals. Toni and I moved water. After dinner Ben, Kaine and I went out and fixed the fence around circle 4, the calves were crawling through it and it was no longer hot.

Tuesday was even hotter. Toni and my internet were both down, for different reasons. Since Toni works out of her house, she got herself an AT&T hotspot for the days her internet is down. Toni’s ac also went out. Her and Jaxsen weren’t feeling very well. Anna rode Kadee early again. The kids went down and did chores early, and Toni moved water before I got home. Anna texted after they got home that Kade’s heifer had a swollen area, I texted the picture to Sheena at Sagehill Vet, we decided it was most likely a sting, put some topicals on it, and waiting to see what it looked like in the morning. Anna, Kaine and I went out to let the heifers and steers loose at round 9, when it got down to the 90s, and then played with the donkey and mini horses for a bit.

By Wednesday you are just thinking is it ever going to cool down?? Kendel took the kids down to Scootney to swim in the lake after they got down washing their steers and heifers. Toni was working in her attic, it is cooler up there since it is a smaller area, less windows, and has it’s own AC unit. None of the steers or heifers ate well, it has just been too hot and not cooling down.  Toni and Jaxsen were both still sick. Toni didn’t even move the water on Wednesday, just left it where it was. We had also put a sprinkler on a railroad tie at the corral to let the horses in the corral go under it and get some relief from the heat.

Thursday Anna got up early to ride Kadee, it was like 77 that early, woohoo. Since it cooled down a little at night the heifers and steers started eating again. Toni still has not AC and no internet. Jaxsen thinks he is close to death. The bull got out and it was a little dramatic for Jaxsen.  By the time he finished his hysterics Toni had the fence fixed. He said it was the worst thing ever and Toni said it would have been worse on Wednesday. 

                Friday, all three of the big kids washed their heifers and steers first thing. Anna and I went out and checked cows after she got done washing, and we fixed a little fence. Then Anna, Kaine and I went to the dentist, we tried to go to lunch first, but Double Dragon is still not open for dine in. So I guess we did not try to go out to lunch, we did, but just not where we wanted. We went to Panda Express since it was basically across the street. Then we went to the dentist, went and got some groceries, got dinner for everyone, and came home. Chad and Andrew were out, so Toni was already down with them trimming horses. Kade did not feel well, we think he had a little heat exhaustion, so he was home napping. Anna, Kaine and Jaxsen went up to do cow chores when they got done with chores.

Friday night/Saturday morning our hay was baled, Kick was up all night watching that. Ben, Anna, Kaine and I got up at 4 to get the cows in and doctor eyes.  Toni got up at a more reasonable time since Allie was coming to preg check horses and bring Queenie and Cammie back. We were done working the calves by around 11, left the calves the kids plan to show in 2022 in, we had an early lunch break and then Toni called to tell me Allie was a few hrs out, so I told her I was going to sleep. Ben, Anna and Kaine cleaned the yard for a little while, and then Anna and Kaine took a nap and Ben went to fix circles. We woke up and Toni and Allie had finished, and it was chore time. Six of the seven mares that were checked were in foal, so that is great news. The bad news is that one of them already shows signs of complications, so now Toni has to get three mares in to give Regumate to and one mare twice per day to try to keep the complications at bay. It is going to be a long 11-month gestation.

Sunday our cousins came over for our annual go to the lake on the 4th event, Anna, Kaine, Kade, Ben and I were not here last year, we were at New Plymouth at a steer show, but they all came anyway. LOL Marlo got there early to help us set up. Mar and Leslie brought over street tacos, Mom brought potato salad and apricot pie (apricots were fresh from Kameron and Christine Jenks), Erina and Terry brought finger foods, and Kendel brought Tres Leche cake. Then we all went down to the lake.  At about 5 pm Leroy brought his herd into the middle of the party so everyone could see them. The foals did really well around the floaties and loud children. Leroy got petted by all that wanted to pet him, then the horses left. Toni and I took a break at chore time to go and do chores, Ben and Anna also took a break for the cattle chores. McCall and Leslie ran home to do their chores, but basically everyone stayed until around 10:30. Happy 4th Everyone.

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Trying to Stay Cool

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Last Week in Pictures