Sunday, March 14, 2010

Working Sunday

Sorry I missed a post for Saturday. After the emotional toll of Friday I decided a 24 hour hiatus from the computer was in order. Friday actually turned out great and now all the cows are back home. My friends Scott and Loren helped gather and haul on Friday and keeping busy most of the day kept my mind from straying too far. By the time I finished hauling and checked and fed everything I ended up not drinking too much and actually went to bed pretty early. It was a very productive and good week but a stressful and tiring one as well. I have much to do this week too but it won’t be at near the frantic pace of last week thankfully.

Today my friend Scott and his wife and girls came up and helped us work the yearling heifers and a few fall calving cows I recently bought. I grew up without any brothers but from sixth grade forward Scott has been very much like one to me. His wife Rose and my wife Chris are friends too and we always enjoy their company. Their daughter Kyra is 6 weeks older than Dakota and has been friends for life. They also have a younger daughter Shelby, who I teasingly call “Fishstick” because of an early life incident who is a great kid too. Thanks again to the Courneya family for spending part of the day with us and helping. The morning started with Shelby giving me a “sign” at her Dads insistence. I about ran off the road from laughing.

Each heifer today received two injections of two vaccines, a mineral/vitamin injection, and an injection for internal and external parasites. They also were given a spray of intranasal vaccine. They will be worked once again in a few weeks and then turned out with bulls to be bred for the first time. If things go correctly the majority of the heifers will be raising their first calf a year from now and then be called cows. Things went pretty smoothly today except for one small heifer that fell in love with Scott. This is not a replacement heifer but one that injured one eye early in life. She will be fed out and will be a locker beef next fall. She is pretty small but she was on the fight with Scott today. Maybe she knew that he lets his children show pigs at the fair. Everyone is a bit suspicious of “pig barn people”.

We also put halters on three of the four show steers of Dakotas for the first time today. The other steer is at the neighbors and I am going to return two of his calves this week and bring “Homer” back home and halter him. The steers actually did not fight the halters much which is a good early sign. I took a picture of Dakota standing next to one of them holding the halter today but the picture did not turn out. I will have to get another one to show the differences between now and a picture of her with her first steer 5 years ago. Noticing things like that make me smile but also really make me feel old. Luckily Chris is just a bit older than I and someday I will get to revel in her Social Security check. That seems a fair trade for the years of abuse I have suffered being referred to as her “boy toy”!

Today’s real environmentalist species found on the ranch is Kentucky bluegrass aka Poa pratensis.

Today’s picture is of Scott climbing the gate to escape the kisses of a heifer calf today. His kids wanted to make sure this made the blog!