Friday, April 29, 2016

Farmers Wife - Working Cows

Take 2
I typed all this out and then lost it :(  So Try try again.

This week was a week full of bovine and bovine mishaps.....  Starting Monday morning and ending Friday!  And we still have a trip to the vet to make tomorrow morning for some preg checks, vaccinations, and lutalizing (that's giving dope to some young heifers to make sure if they are bred the flush the baby, these particular heifers are too young and small to be bred)
These two girls started my Monday off with a ton of work!  They were on the wrong side of the fence with a big black neighbor bull.  What in the world are you heifers thinking!  They are way too young and small to be bred but they are old enough to be cycling.... So, after finding them on the wrong side of the fence Mr. H and I decided to do some bovine shuffling. . . . 
 I went to the other lease to check everyone there and noticed that Cosmo the First has grown a TON this spring!  He's pushing 4 years old and is massive!
 He's almost as big as my car!  (PS Notice my pretty little chauffeur)
 So, after checking everyone I went home to get things ready for the bovine shuffle.  Hooking the trailer up to the pickup is always easier when someone is helping guide you but I'm getting pretty good at doing it by myself.....
   Just a little brute force and uglieness and I got it right where it needed to be!
 Awww, Pistol Annie.  She thinks anytime a door opens to a vehicle she needs to get in and go.  It doesn't matter if it's a door to one of our vehicles or someone else's.  She likes to go!
 Here they are on the right side of the fence!  A feed bucket does wonders!  Now that they are where they're suppose to be I took off walking towards the pens, got all the bovine in that pasture to follow me and got them pinned up so we could move them.  7 total, 5 heifers and 2 steers.... The 5 heifers get the long trip to the house, the 2 steers got dumped in the pasture with our older cows, their calves, and Cosmo the First.
Now, I had to move all the bovine that was at the house to the north lease.... That's why I was hooking up the trailer.  I got them pinned up and got the trailer backed to the chute and tried running them in the trailer, except they didn't want to go.  :(  We do not have the best set up at home for loading.  So after a bit I decided to leave that job for Mr. H when he got home.  I went a head and went out to the home place lease and got everyone situated there and pulled into the north lease to wait on Mr. H.  It was a beautiful spring day and my view was amazing!  I'm pretty sure the Lord made this view just for me to enjoy after a trying day!  Thanks Lord!
 Here he is with a load of heifers, a cow, a calf, and Cosmo the Second.
Let us out of here!  We want solid ground!!!!!  
 A lot happened between the pic of unloading cows and the pic above..... But it included a bit of raised voices, bovine beatings, and frustration.  We got the heifers loaded in the front of the trailer with no trouble, then the steers loaded in the back half, easy peasy.  Got to the other lease about 5ish miles away and unloaded the steers, got all 25 head of bovine at that place in the lots and separated out the 5 we needed to take home and finally after much stress got them loaded.  Jerseys are stubborn!  Once we got 2 of the cows loaded one of the older Jerseys decided she didn't want anyone else in the trailer so she stood at the door head butting the others that needed loaded.  BAH!  Finally got it done and got them home and unloaded in the pasture at the house.  The pic above is my old Jersey with her heifer who is a jersey/angus cross and her adopted jersey bull calf..... They need weened and momma needs preg checked.  I can't believe it's already been 6 months since she calved, time flies!
 Little cow poo never hurt anyone.  Made them stink a little but cow poo is the smell of money, right?
 The only casualty for the day.  :( My work jeans.  I'm running out of work jeans.  I'm going to have to buy new good jeans so I can make some of my good jeans into work jeans..... Farming is tough on a wardrobe!
While we were loading cows at the other lease the guy who owns it was cleaning crappie!  He tossed me a bag when we were leaving.  I'm grateful because I had nothing thawed for supper!  It's pretty awesome when you can cook a meal that is all home grown or harvested.  The only thing that was "bought" was the corn meal on the fish, the seasoning, and the oil to cook it in.  :D that makes me happy!
 While dining on fish the lease guy called and asked if we made it home okay, he found a chunk of trailer floor in his driveway.  Sure enough a piece had rotted out and left a couple holes.  Thankfully I'm married to a handy man who got it fixed up so we can use it tomorrow for the trip to the vet......  And so ended Monday......
Yep, that's an open gate that goes into a hay field with no fences that is right next to where my cows were pastured.....Wednesday 9ish am..... The lease guy calls, your cows are out at the north lease.  UGH!  So, I put my shoes on, gather fence fixing material in case I need it, a bucket of feed, and head that way.  Yep, those are my cows, and they are 3/4 of a mile from where they were suppose to be.  Thanks to Pumper Joe for making the call and waiting with them so they didn't run off any further.  They were on a fairly busy paved road so it could have been bad.....
Pumper Joe asked how I was going to get them back in..... A feed bucket of course.  I jumped in the car, the bovine were gathered around me because I have them spoiled, I hung my hand out the window with the feed bucket it in and shook it a bit to get their attention and then started driving.  They followed just like I hoped! 
I got them in the pasture at the home place lease because it was closer than the north lease, and I didn't know what kind of fence work I was going to have to do..... They finished the bucket of cubes and started on the yummy green grass...  I checked them yesterday and they were still where they were suppose to be, Praise the Lord!
 This is the closed and wired shut gate.  Cows are on a different lease but if I put anything else here they won't be able to get through that gate again unless they grow opposable thumbs.
Fast forward to Friday at home.... Got out of bed, got dressed, walked outside before my cup of coffee was ready, and had 2 calves out.  #67 and #70.  The gate looked like it was opened a little bit so I assumed they got out there.  Got them ran back in and shut the gate, went in got my coffee and a bowl of cereal and sat on the front porch and had breakfast.  I was finishing up my coffee and noticed that #66 was out of the pasture and after walking towards her saw #67 out again.  :( What in the world?  Well, I found a fence wire that was broke, that is probably how they got out the first time but I just didn't notice it, remember I hadn't had coffee at that time, I was a little more alert the 2nd time I had to run calves back in the pasture.....
So, I got the fence fixing stuff and used my newly acquired fence fixing skill.  It's not pretty but it's back together and I'm pretty proud of myself for getting it done!

And thus ends the week of working with cows.  Tomorrows trip to the vet should be a breeze, at least I'm praying it is.  I always enjoy getting to visit with Mr. and Mrs. Doc, there's a lot I can learn from just a short visit with them.  Doc has been doing this longer than I have been alive and it's always a learning experience for me!  We are really blessed to have a good vet!

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Fishing Story

            The year was about 1990. I was about 10 years old, depending on the day of the trip.  My birthday is in June, and around that time we would normally spend a week or two at Texoma Lake.  This particular year it was our family in a travel trailer, my aunt and uncle in a tent, and close friends in yet another tent.  One trailer, two tents, and three boats. 
Every time we went out on the water we would load up with limits of striper,*
Now about our boat.  We had an old green fiberglass boat that had a platform built on the front with a bar stool bolted to the platform.  We used this boat for striper fishing by day and bow fishing or fishing under the railroad bridge by night.  The old boat had seen better days.  I remember going across Lake Texoma one morning after catching a mess of striper with my dad and water started coming in the boat. . .because a split had appeared split straight up the middle of the boat about a foot long.  Dad had to keep the boat on plane so that water wouldn’t come in, while ignoring some of the no wake bouys.  We did, however, make it to shore without sinking!  Dad got the old boat loaded up on the boat trailer and pulled into our camp site so it could dry out and we made a run to the local store for supplies to fix the crack.  I’m pretty sure we ended up with a fiberglass repair kit and duct tape (yes, we used both), and yes we finished out the week fishing out of the old green boat! 
Now, like I said, there were 3 boats in camp, but there were enough people that we really needed all 3 so we weren’t in each other’s way during the heat of the moment catching massive striper.  We couldn’t just leave old green behind.  Me, being a daddy’s girl didn’t mind the duct taped boat.  I mean, my daddy fixed it and says it’ll be fine so I know it’ll be fine, right?  I’m pretty sure I recall my sister opting to stay in camp with my mom or riding with someone else.  Scaredy cat.
On to the fishing story.  My place on the boat was that bar stool I mentioned earlier.  I claimed it and was pretty much tied to it for the duration of our trip.  For striper fishing, I used a long handled rods with Zebco 888 reels on it and blue and silver pencil poppers to catch those big striper on top water, I would lodge the rod against my belly button and get to fishing.  Now, I was a pretty small girl so I had a pretty good fight with some of the bigger fish, my dad is fun to watch when he tells this story, because he gets pretty animated.  I’ll try to do it justice with words, and you can use your imaginations, a small 10 year old girl with big glasses and bright red hair, on the platform of a worn out green boat striper fishing. 
I would stand up and cast my pencil popper in the middle of the shad school we would see and then I’d lean against the barstool and start reeling, when I’d get one on the line, and it was about every other cast if not every cast*, I would pull as hard as I could and reel, while reeling the fish, if it was any size at all would pull me forward off the bar stool.  I’d have to pull back again and reel some more.  It was kind of like a feisty game of tug of war, but I won every time. 
One afternoon the weather was turning off bad.  You know, Oklahoma in May and early June.  There were tornadoes being spotted and rain, lightening, and thunder all around us.  This is when the fish were biting the best.  The men in the group had gone out earlier to fish and scarcely made it back before things started going sideways, literally.  While we all huddled in our travel trailer, the storm raged around us.  The guys started telling fish stories.  This, they said, was the absolute best striper fishing they had ever experienced, the storm had brought the really big striper to the top and they were having a blast catching them.  Oddly enough, one of them actually had enough sense to get them back to shore before the tornadoes and high winds hit. 
And in the words of Jimmy Buffet…. “It’s a semi-true story believe it or not I made up a few things and there’s some I forgot.  But the life and the tellin’ are both real to me and they all run together and turn out to be a semi-true story.”
Many moons later and my dad still tries to take me on a fishing trip every year for my birthday and those are memories I will always cherish.

*Possible “fishing story”.
 A lot of fish to hold for such a little girl!  Yep, that's me flaming red hair and all!
This is me and my dad on that fishing trip so long ago.  (The green boat is just to the right of the picture)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

It's the Little Things in Marriage

Warning: Might be offensive to some, might be mushy, might be PG13 in places.

Next Saturday, April 16, we will be married 17 years! (As John says, I was 12 when we got married ;-))  SEVENTEEN YEARS!!!!
That's a long time but it's also such a short time, I'm looking forward to 50+ years ahead of us! Anyway, this blog is going to be about the simple things that make a marriage.....Maybe it will help someone see that your spouse doesn't have to do big things all the time to keep your love going strong...  I think those little things can fill you up and make all the difference in the world.
First off, I can't imagine my life without John.  He's my best friend.  He's my lover.  He's my sounding board for crazy ideas.  He keeps me grounded and on a level path.  He provides everything I need.
So, this morning I needed help putting a necklace on that has a short chain and John happened down the hall to watch me get dressed and stepped up and helped me with the clasp.  His hands grazed the back of my neck and gave me chills.  It also made me realize that I would have been fighting with the clasp for who knows how long if I wouldn't have had his help.  That made me realize there are a million "little things" that he does every day to show me his love without saying it.  Yes, I love to hear him tell me he loves me but the acts and touches and whispered words are also as endearing and needed just as much....
Here's my list, albeit, no where near complete, it would take pages and pages, and like I said, some mushy, some PG13 but maybe they'll make you think about your spouse and your relationship.......

His arm around me at church
Holding hands driving down the road
A soft kiss on my closed eyes
His giant manly hands caressing any part of me
Him scratching my head and/or back
His smile
Helping me undress after church every week
Laying naked in bed talking about random things
Sitting on the porch talking about random things
Sitting together reading a book in the quiet of the day knowing we're together
Walking across the yard hand in hand
Doing chores together
His support of my totally random ideas and projects
How proud he is of me when thos random ideas/projects are complete and/or working
Sitting by the pond during his lunch hour enjoying each others company along with lunch
Being woken up with a light hand and soft kiss and whisper in my ear
Random messages asking how things are going
Sitting in the same room sending kinky messages to each via IM just because we can
The smile on  his face every time he sees me after a time away from each other
The excitement I see on  his face when I tell him I'm going to be in town to have lunch with him
Small random gifts
A note left on the mirror
The smell of his cologne on his pillow that I snuggle after he gets out of bed
Cards left on the counter with sweet notes and cash for shopping for specific things I've mentioned
Folded and put away laundry
Loading the dishwasher
Laying in the grass looking up at the sky
Flowers, picked in yard, on the side of the road, or from the florist
An out of the blue compliment about my make up
An admiration about specific parts of my body, not always my chest or backside ;-)
Showers together
His lies to people around about how I'm a better shot than he is
Foot massages
Bringing me coffee in bed
A whisper in my ear of I love you when there is no reason to whisper
Kisses on my neck
Making out like a teenager, I'm not going to lie, they usually end way further than a teenager should go but they're a fun start

Okay, I think I better stop.  Like I said there are so many little things that make our marriage great and I'll not bore you with anymore, if you happened to even make it past the first couple....

So, here's to 17+ more years of a great marriage and all the little things that make us smile about each other.
The love of my life, my best friend, my companion, my lover
Awww one of my favorite views