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I headed out on Friday morning, going to near Scottsbluff to a workshop with Bruce Sandifer… I have known of and visited with him for several years.. he has been searching all of his life, as I have been, for how the old ones rode the hackamore and spade bit… he has re-engineered how they did it and I believe he has it figured out.. it is relatively simple, yet different than most think of how to ride a horse and for certain how to use the hackamore and spade bit… it was time well spent and with a great group of folks.. every one there threw any ego they had out the window and listened and tried to do as Bruce showed us and we all saw terrific results in ourselves and our hoses… I hope to get to work with and hang out with Bruce and this bunch of people again… and I am pretty excited to get on some of these young horses and see what I can accomplish… this system is so simple, that a child can do it, and I am sure that is how it was started and why it came about when you think of those old Jesuit priests having to teach horsemanship and stockmanship to the neophytes who were all they had to help them build and run the missions in northern Mexico and southern California, of today…

Windy and cool today and supposed to be the same for tomorrow, good day to go fence.. might keep the skeeters away.. they tell me it rained while I was gone.. the country looks great and did all the way down to Scottsbluff… like Mother Nature is trying to make up for her fury from last fall and winter…

Tate, Kass and kids came out Sunday evening and spent the night so we could work cows yesterday… Fr Tyler showed up also… We got saddled up and gathered the cows and gt them in, sorted off the dry’s and then split the calves off, and vaccinated the cows and branded the cow Tate and Chance bought last winter… Gabe and I pushed them all up the chute for them. today Tate and Kass and Hope and Chance took their dry’s to the sale… Gabe, Lige, Gus and Sam and I went down and fixed some fence, hauled some salt out and looked at stuff… hopefully I can get some saddle work snuck in this afternoon… I went and got a couple air conditioners from up stairs and have one in the living room and one in the leather shop… it’s going to get warm and with all the rain we’ve had it’s muggy…

 

For me for this spring, anyway… went to Trav’s and helped him today… yesterday i went to Pierre where Ken and I had a gig in the evening.. got home about 10 last night and then up at 4 to saddle and head to the branding.. I needed a nap this afternoon!

We’ve been getting lots of rain and all around us with flooding in places… Hiway 85 washed out the other night and lots of flooding north of Belle, up towards Buffalo… Trav had to reschedule his branding twice as did Lonny down in the breaks, got them done the other day also… in between we’ve worked on some fence and the over flow off the big rank down south… Chance and one of the boys moved some cows yesterday after I left and worked on some fence.. skeeters are the pits in places.. as are the deer flies and nose flies… I rode into town with Chance and the kids on Wednesday and picked up Cindy and we went and looked at houses… yeah, we are thinking again… sure seem high and not sure we can build what we want for what I would be willing to spend.. but there are a lot of bug tree’s in the hills and Chance has a plan for making them into timbers and then making a squared timber house… lots of things have to fall into place.. we’ll see… lots wrong with the house we are in and hate to put money into something that is really not situated good or that you know is going to pot all the time… oh well, I will pray on it and let God decide…

I had a meeting at the Sioux Spiritual Center yesterday morning that went until afternoon… then I drove down to Philip and killed time until it was time for the bronc match… had clouds all around us, just like last year, but they split and only dripped a few drops.. not so much at home… had a hard fast rain and we got about an inch and a half and another half in this morning.. it i wet and muddy.. some are starting to complain and forget the dry times… many want to get in the hay fields… I am enjoying it… had a meeting with the Folklorist for the Apprenticeship deal I am doing with a younger neighbor, building saddles… I just putted around this afternoon and then Cindy and I drove over to get the grandkids from the neighbors where they stayed today while their parents went to the bakery and made and delivered cake.. they are expecting a later night so I guess we got them for the evening.. we have pizza’s cooking and they are watching old Looney Tunes, cartoons… Mass tomorrow morning and then see what the day brings…

This morning Gus and Sam and I ran the horses in (actually we walked as they were real close and some already in the corral) and saddled up. Sam wanted to ride Charlie the pony so I gt him all rigged up, turned them loose in the round corral and let them have at it. went pretty fair so i saddled Beaver for Gus, put them in the round corral with Sam and saddled Pilgrim for me.. really wanted to ride Pard but thought I might need a solid horse, riding with these two little wild men.. turns out, I was glad I rode who I did… we kicked all the new branded pairs out north and when we got them thru’ the gate Sam was tired of Charlie and Gus was tired of Beaver so we swapped saddles and riders.. Sam got along better with Beav and Gus enjoyed Charlie as he wanted to go faster… after dinner Sam and I took the tractor south and worked on putting some dirt around the tank down there and found a broken gate stick, so figured out why cows were not where they were supposed to be… we went back with Little Red and fixed the gate and came home, saddled up again and all rode south to put the cattle back. they were scattered all over the southern part of the pastures.. we got them back in a round about way and rode home.. by then Gus was tired of fighting with Charlie and I am sure Charlie was tired of Gus.. both boys did well… Sam kept whacking Beaver with the end of his romal trying to keep him from eating but Beaver soon figured out he could ignore him as he couldn’t whack him very hard… but Sam kept a whacking! 😀  Chance and I have a branding in the breaks tomorrow if it don’t rain out…

Getting the calves branded…. got rained out yesterday.. ( I am hearing that God is trying to tell us to quit trying to brand on a Sunday) Mike had to fly out this morning so we headed to town and the crew showed up here about noon, the girls fed them and I got back about the same time, we saddled up and went to work.. went real well and had a beautiful day for it… Mike did get to help up north at McTighes on Saturday, so he didn’t get skunked… got a couple more if it works out I can get to them.. stuff is piling up around here… cows not where they ought to be, fences that need patched up, leather work that needs to be done, a couple wind breaks to build…. oh well… it will all get doe in time.. maybe not my time, but in time…. only got one fence crawling little black rip left to calve..don’t like like she’s in any hurry for it to happen.. she’ll surprise me one of these days I bet… sure going to be quiet around here with out my Prunie friend, Mike, tho’…. one of the best things is that Jason, Chances buddy and partner in crime from when they both worked for Johnnie, came out to help and topped of Pard. Pard was plumb good.. he gathered on him and rode Beaver to rope off.. afterwords I rode him back to the house and he was good.. ,Thanks Jason!

Been trying to keep Mike busy and working, but we been getting rain and so it changes our schedules… not that I am complaining! Mike, Chance and Sam and I went over and helped Frank brand today… then when we got back Mike and I kicked the pasture cattle into a fresh patch of grass, futher south… we are supposed to plant a bunch of trees tomorrow… then go up to Joe’s and brand on Saturday and try to get ours done on Sunday… Mike roped today and had trouble.. he’s not used to roping calves and had a hard time catching two feet, but he drag some out… I bet he does better at the next one… got over and inch of rain last night with lots of lightning, one popped right over the house or there abouts.. there was no time between the flash and the noise… had an inch or so Tuesday night which canceled a branding on Wednesday… Travis had to reshedule, he was planning on Monday, Tuesady and Wednesday… now he is going for end of next week, sounds like.. sure would like to go for one day at least…

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