It has been awhile since I wrote in here. It is hot this morning and going to get hotter… why is it that hotter is so hot, until you eventually get used to it, start doing your outside work earlier, taking a siesta until it cools off towards evening and then hoping for a nice cool breeze. As the old cowboy said one time on a hot day, while looking up towards the sun, “Where in hell were you last winter?”
We had a family as guests for the past few days. Nice couple and good kids. But they wear me out. No experience around horses so you are constantly on the alert to keep them safe and try and teach them that even tho’ these horses are gentle and wouldn’t hurt them for the world, there are others out there who will and it is best to always be on the alert as you never know when you will meet the spookier ones. Who will hurt you, even tho’ they don’t mean to.
But all went well and no one was injured and all seemed to have a great time while here. Hope they come back.
Cattle seem to be doing well, tho’ we have had to doctor for some foot rot. I have been riding my young colt, he’s 4 and very nice… been a few days and him and me need to spend some time together so he doesn’t forget his manners. I haven’t been riding him while the guests were here as I wanted to be mounted on an older, better tested horse, in case of a wreck or so I could head off a wreck and keep my focus on the guests.
We have grasshoppers and they are pretty thick. We have caught a few rains and the grass has been pretty good, but will run short now with all the hoppers and cattle grazing it. I used to be able to get some bran with the biological control in it that only effects the hopper, and none of the other small , good bugs, but can’t get it anymore. I hate to spray as then you kill all the little bugs and many are good for the plants. Oh well, I guess God knows what he is doing.
I better go work in the leather shop! I can stay cool there.
For some reason, I can no longer find all the links that used to be on this site… when I set it up for our Dennisranch vacation site, it changed it and I can’t figure out where it went and not smart enough to go and add a new page for links.. if/when I figure that out, I will do so.
Wind has been blowing out of the south east for three days.. really getting up there at times.. spreading the flowers pollen I guess.
Chance had to run in to town today so Sam stayed with me and Gramma. So Sam and I went up and took some wire off a fence that needs torn down, we rolled up the wire too. We will go pull the posts one of these days.. then this afternoon we went out and Sam rode July, the pony colt. She will be 2 on July 1st. He rode her a couple times last fall a little ways.. she and he both did good.
Been going to branding. Got most everybody done around here.. we will brand ours sometime around the end of the month. Got another one mid June for people who calve later like we do.
Been getting some rains and the grass is green and growing. Sure is pretty this time of year when it rains.
This is the time of year where the cows get shots and the baby calves get worked.. when I say babies, I don’t mean new borns.. no they are big enough to give as good as they get!
We went to one on Thursday, got the first bunch worked while it threatened rain… got the second bunch in and got the pairs split and the cows vaccinated and when we just got a good start on the calves, the heavens opened up and man it rained and the wind blew.. we waited a bit but looked like it wasn’t going to quit for awhile so we went and ate a later lunch, hoping to finish up afterwards.. it never quit… so part of the crew went back and gave vaccinations to the calves and the rest of us went home and took care of things that needed taking care of.. we went and checked on new born wet baby calves… they got a little chilled but by late evening the wind went down and it quit raining and they warmed back up…
Friday we went to anther and it was a great day. Weather co-operated and we got them done, tho’ we did a late start to let things dry out a bit.. they were south and east of us and never got quite as much rain as we did… our rain gauge is broke so don’t know what we had, but over 2 inches in the cat dish setting outside, I am guessing over one and a half inches and almost two.
Today we got started about 7 and the wind howled.. over fifty mph… sure was hard to rope.. finished up one neighbor, went to the others we got rained out on, on Thursday.. more help, so we got them done in good shape, but everyone was glad to be done and get out of the wind……can’t say how many we did, we don’t ask those questions….Sam and Gus helped gather four bunches and wrestled calves all day.. did good.. they are getting the knack, tho’ Sam is still light enough, some of the bigger calves stood him on his head, so to speak, holding down the front end… there were quite a bunch of them 8 to 12 year old kids and they all worked their tail feathers off… miserable, but still a fun, good day.
We needed to get the drop bunch across the road and on to green grass, so this morning after we watched Mass on TV, a bunch of runt cowhands and Chance and I went out and brought them in and sorted off the yearlong heifers and the dry cows (the drop bunch will be getting next to where we have the bulls) and got it done. Some kids learned about holding the herd and how to move and set it up so they would mostly sort them selves off.. no one got hollered at, at least not in an angry way, and them kids made hands. It was fun…after lunch AriCat and Eshack rode ponies and Chance and I on broke horses and we went and tagged the ones that needed it.. then Ari and Eshack helped me feed some hay to the horses and to the heifers and the pairs/yearlings. Then we picked up mineral tubs and salt and moved them. Had to shoot a cow that has been going down.. finally decided she just wasn’t going to get better.. we give her every chance..survival of the fittest I guess. Never a fun thing to do, but sometimes you have to be merciful. Had just a little wind and sure didn’t need a coat. Looks like the upcoming week ought to make the grass shoot up.
Hope you all havre a Happy Easter! We are getting a good start on calving and got snow and wind last night and this morning just the wind.. supposed to keep it up for several days, but supposed to warm up a bit as we get into the week… here is what happened last night…
With this snow cold and wind, we have all the calving cattle in close, behind protection and we check on them every two hours.. just before dark I seen a cow had calved and decided we’d better bring him in. I went and got Chance, we saddled to cold horses and set things up so we could use the calf sled and bring the calf in to the shed…I hooked onto the calf sled with Pard.. he had never done this before, and was shivering and not wanting to experience this fun.. but I hooked my rope onto the sled and let it out quite a ways.. Chance had the gates open and set.. Pard snorted and had rollers I his nose and was walking on egg shells and didn’t like that black thing following up.. he is kind of a watch horse…I let it out to about 40 foot behind us, navigated out to the cold calf, Chance loaded him and mama sniffed him and we headed to the barn, mama right there the whole way…we decided to just leave him on front of the horse barn as it is pretty much out of the wind and we’d come back and check on him…Pard and Beav got put in the barn for the night with now warm saddles on their backs.. even gave them a bite of hay.. we went back about a half hour later to check on him and in the mean time I got to thinking we could put an old coat on him…mama was pretty concerned, but we got the coat on , his front legs thru’ the arm holes… stepped back and here come mama, on the fight.. tried to kill the calf.. we get her run off and decided maybe he should go in the barn for awhile and mama could stay out side. looked like he had sucked.. I think she could smell the dog on that coat that had been riding in the back of the ranch outfit all this winter…and the dog setting on it.. anyway, they are in and should make it until morning when this weather should be a bit better … now we check thru; the night… hope I don’t have to sled any more in.. heifers are all in the corral in front of the shed so easier to get in, only problem is, there is a semi wild heifer in the shed withnher baby.. we decided if we had to get another one in, and she left, at least her baby would be in the warm shed.. hope they all cross their legs tonight..
Then later on…Epilogue … one calf in the house, taken back to mama, coat calf back with mama, out with the other pairs.. the rest crossed their legs…
Then this…Epilogue number Dos…. We put the house calf mama in the chute and milked a little in a bottle. Fed it to the calf and git him to suck a little..being in the house did the same as some people and made him dumb…
If some of you, and you know who you are, would just get on Facebook, you could be better updated on me and what goes on around here.. plus, I post videos.. I can’t post video’s on here as they take 6 weeks to upload evidently!
Weather has warmed up.. been a few real nice days in a row..we started getting some baby calves… I guess it’s spring…. Now, before you get all excited and think “Hey! No more winter!” Well… your kind of right.. no, winter is past.. but that doesn’t mean we can’t have some spring storms.. most of the worst blizzards I have ever seen have come in spring… so don’t be surprised when we get some more snow and for this area, some wind with it.. sounds and looks like we have a shot coming at us mid week, here. Of course! Because we are starting to get baby calves! Oh well, it is to be expected. Only months we don’t really have a chance of snow is June, July and August.. and my Dad saw it when it snowed on the fourth of July!
I hope your all doing well in the Covid crisis… I am hearing bad stories coming out of it.. some well known people have it, some have died.. Odd, no one gets out of this world alive but everyone seems so shocked when someone does die… people are funny critters…
Yesterday while skiving leather on a saddle skirt I am building, I slipped and got my hand in the way of a very sharp tool… cut into my index finger.. Cindy and Chance thought it needed stitches, so against my will I went in.. sure enough, 6 stitches.. I do have to say that it isn’t nearly as sore as other cuts I have had, but it happens to be on a finger I don’t have a lot of feeling in because of a pinched nerve in my neck, so they tell me.. haven’t had an MRI. I can’t afford those kinds of things.. Anyway, today I took all the gauze and stuff they had put on it, fixed it up with some bandaids and was back at work in the leather shop.. got two saddles I am trying to get done as fast as I can. We got a couple inches of good wet snow this morning and off and on thru’ out the day. Moisture! We love it! Been a pretty good winter here so far..and spring is supposedly here. As one person said on Facebook today, this is the best March blizzard we’ve ever had! We are practicing social distancing.. so.. same as always! Schwan man was here today but couldn’t come into the house.. company policy right now… really, people are idiots…if people would learn to stay away from other people when ever they have any communicable sickness, then we wouldn’t have this panic….wonder what it is going to do to change the world? Remember 9 11? And all the changes that came about from that? So, life on the ranch goes on.. just like always. Hope your doing good.
Awful nice for March. Got up to 70 seems like and hardly a breath of wind.. a whole bunch of runt cowhands saddled up and wen’t with their father and uncle and grampa and we got all the cows in and sorted off the coming 2 year old, first calf heifers. There were a few steer calves got in at one time or another and we got them sorted off and back to their proper bunch. Some cows with the steer calves that got sorted back into the cow bunch, several bulls calves we caught and turned into steers… no animals or people were hurt in the endeavor tho’ several maybe had a little pain come into their life.. bulls to steers, colts and kids to learning… not much loudness, lots of good loops thrown and some poor ones also, of course. Sweat run off from horses and people and a few of the bovines were panting before it all got done.. quite a change in temps for all of us. Now we March on ahead with our spring work.
I got one saddle finished and the owner picked it up and 2 more started that I am trying to hurry on so they can have them for their calving and brandings. Time changes tonight (why?) so our Mass schedule changes also. 7 tonight and I think stays there until time changes next fall.
There is green grass showing in places, tho’ thin and short and geese all over, honking. Must be spring, but I bet we still get some colder temps and more snow. For sure some rain.. it makes the grass grow, you know.
When I went out to feed today, there were horses in with the steers, heifer calves and some cows in the pasture next to them, headed towards us.. so I hurried up and fed the grain to the steers (luckily the horses had no idea what I was doing) and then hauled some hay to the cows and heifer calves up the creek and lured most back to the pasture where they belonged… got another bale and tried to lure the few who hadn’t come, with no luck. So fed it, then went back with the tractor, both Bit and Peg, the cow dogs, stepped out of the tractor and got the calves headed to where they belonged… with the help of the dogs, got them back where they belonged, fixed the torn up gates, then came back, got in the Nitro (my ranch vehicle) and drove the horses into the corral and sorted back the three calves who had decided to join them in there. Locked the horses in, went back and got the tractor, fed the rest of the grain to the steers and fixed another couple gates… tomorrow, I will feed the big bunch up west first, and hopefully get them farther north and out of the pasture that is close to the steers. And lock them up there…
Found a good use for these big bags we get grain in. They will hold a ton or more of feed and have loops at the top.. fit right over the spears on the bales spear front of the loader. I brought it up to the house and we loaded up trash that needed hauled away from Tate and Cindys work on the basement. Got it dumped, came back and got another load and left the bag and trash in it at the dump.. now for some no wind weather and some green, so we can burn the trash in the pit.
Was going to finish up a saddle today but other things (like stupid cattle) got in the way. Hopefully tomorrow it will get done and I can get on to other things. Got a belt promised to a guy, two more saddles right away and a couple more after that if I get time before we get too busy with spring work. Also need to build a set or two of wooly chaps. I may have to give up my afternoon naps or start getting going earlier in the morning! Maybe Cindy will get me some caffeine pills tommorw!