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Turning out heifers

We turned the heifers out last week. They had been put on feed for a few weeks after breeding, just to keep them growing. We are now in between silage chopping seasons so they went back out to pasture. To say they were excited about their freedom was an understatement!

 

 

By |August 11th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

County Fair Open Cattle Show

The open cattle show was last week. It was a very early day but I will say TOTALLY worth it. Scott and I took heifers in early and then he stayed with them while I came home and got the boys. Nana and Papaw had agreed to keep the little boys at home until just before show time. At the grounds we had lots of time to visit with friends.

The heifers got an early bath.

 

They seemed to enjoy all the fans going in the barn.

 

We enjoyed supporting friends with bucket calves and their first cattle show as well. It was fun to all stall together, have all the kids play together, share camera duty, chat with other adults and know we’ll be doing this for years to come!

Go Rachel & Greta!  Great job girls.

 

It was finally show time for the boys. Aunt Kelly sent a good luck message and we were excited that all 4 grandparents, both younger brothers, Aunt Vicki, cousin Caleb and lots of friends had come to support the boys.

 

Thank goodness Coach Justin was there to do the final prep work on the heifers.   Scott and I just look at each other with amazement at the things he can do with hair! He has done a great job getting the boys excited about showing cattle, teaching them showmanship skills and improving hair coats.

 

 We made the walk down to the holding pens. I did my best to stay behind and not too close to the boys. My stomach was in knots enough for all of us! Being the mom is WAYYY more difficult than being the showman, I have quickly learned.  I wanted this to be a fun experience for them, […]

By |August 4th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Fair is here!

The county fair is finally here! We have been preparing for this event all summer. We were all excited. Some of us knew what to expect – some didn’t. The boys seem to love the fair already. I’m not sure if they love it for the same reasons that Scott and I do, but as of right now we’ll take what we can get!

Owen and Cody are officially Clover Kids thru the 4-H program. They did Chalkboard flower pots as their project this year. They opted to go thru the interview judging where they had to explain their project to a judge. The Big O went first and Cody followed. They both answered a series of questions and then shook the judge’s hand before getting their ribbon. They each received a participation ribbon.

After judging we walked thru the cattle barn. We got an idea of where we wanted our pens and then headed back home for the next project. Papaw and Reed enjoyed the tour of the grounds!

 

Owen, Cody and Levi all entered bread dough animals in the open division of the Baked Goods Department. Nana had come back to town and took care of getting everything made.

Owen made an Octopus

 

Cody made another gator. He eventually painted it green with an egg wash.

 

Levi made a dog. He chose to just use a plain egg wash to make the dog look brown.

 

We rushed the bread into town on Monday morning. I am happy to report that the boys did very well with their dough art. Owen was 1st, Levi 2nd and Cody 4th. Our friend Rachel ended up in 3rd. They all want to try it again next year!

Two out of three posed by the viewing case.

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By |August 2nd, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Fair is close

The county fair starts next week. As I am sure you all have said…’Where is the summer going?  Our county fair, The Great Mississippi Valley Fair, is rather large. Coming from Ohio, I tell people it is similar to the size of our state fair. There is lots of different things to do and lots of exhibits. Owen and Cody are part of the 4-H Clover Kids program. They made chalkboard flowerpots and will have an interview judging. They also chose heifers to take. We have some close friends with bucket calves that will show at the fair the same day. Let the lifelong friendships begin!

 

We have been conditioning the hair for several weeks on the heifers. Every morning we rinse coats and blow them out. I am very impressed at the boys dedication. They give it a good effort everyday.

 

 Cody LOVES wash day!

 

Levi likes to be included in the cattle work.

The Big O is a great blow out guy. We’ve decided he can’t do it with his mouth closed.  🙂

 

Because we love the fair…or we are crazy I’m not sure which…Owen, Cody & Levi have entered the dough art competition at the fair also. They each make a dough project and it will be judged. Thank goodness when we decided to do this Nana was in town. She took ideas that the boys had and helped them created great pieces. They did a trial run a few weeks ago and she will be back to help with the competition pieces!

 

Ah, the memories we are making!!

By |July 24th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Champion Steer

A big congratulations goes to Carly Bates!! She exhibited the Champion Hereford Steer at the 2014 Muscatine County Fair. She chose this steer from our group last fall and worked with him all season. Great job, Carly!!

By |July 22nd, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

The young group

 

 

I snuck away the other evening for a ride. I took one of the horses and went to check the young heifers and the bull that is with them. He is a new sire to us. We call him, Rocky, but he is a 719T son. We are excited about the calves to come next spring.

 

The heifers were very interested to know what we were up to.

 

Most of them seemed to approve of our check. They also enjoyed watching the boys climb the gate 🙂

 

 

As we were leaving, even the feed lots calves decided to pose!

 

I will try to get a few photos of the calves soon. There are a few that we will keep back as bull prospects. Several to choose from for show steers as well!

By |June 26th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Summer is here!

It is officially summer! The boys are so excited. They are sporting new haircuts.   The Dad played barber and gave the older three mohawks! The mom drew the line at the baby’s hair.   We have also found a few strawberries.   Our usual place, Pride of the Wapsi, had to close earlier than expected so we went with plan B. Although they were small, the jam still tastes yummy.   So far this summer, making hay has been rather difficult. We need at least 3 good dry days to make hay properly. It has been raining about every other day for the past month. The moisture is great for the row crops, but our hay production is behind. Scott has mowed a few fields and is hoping for nice weather this week.     We hope you are excited about the start of summer.

By |June 23rd, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Horses

Although we don’t ride as much as Scott and I would like, we are happy the boys have the occasional interest in riding. I tried to sneak out the other evening and Owen decided to come along. He chose Scott’s horse. Big Reno is 16.3H tall. He is certainly our gentle giant.

 

 

Sharing a sunset ride was a beautiful thing.

 

Of course, when we got back there were two others that insisted they get to ride as well!

 

Jim and Reno were thrilled!

 

Catching cows

The last month has been quite a blur, but such the life of any farm family. Everything happens at the same time!  We finished planting, celebrated two birthdays, worked cows several times for AI breeding, the older boys finished up school and we traveled to Ohio to watch niece, Lori, graduate from high school. When we returned we were to sort cows and turn out bulls for summer clean up breeding. The bulls were close to the barns and on feed…they were ready to visit the ladies! We turn out and pull bulls on specific dates to control calving. Scott prefers to be done calving before we take off to the crop fields.

 

    

 

The cows were caught in a small lot and were to spend the night until we could sort in the cool of the morning with Cowboy Dean’s assistance. It was to be a easy morning of sorting with the kids and I just watching from a distance.

 

The plan sounded great.

 

However, we awoke to  all the cows …gone. They hadn’t left the property, just turned themselves back out on 50acres of pasture/timber. Evidently that were not as excited to see the bulls. So much for the easy morning!

The boys drove out to the far side of the pasture and I walked the north side of the pasture. After we found the cow we  started walking the cows back to the corral.

 

Well, Dean, Scott, Owen, Cody and two of the dogs started walking. Levi, Reed and I followed with the RTV to keep the ladies and calves moving. It all  started pretty well.

 

 

We used to work cows via horseback, but we have discovered it is often easier on foot. We have lots of timber and steep hills. The cows know the horses can’t […]

The Creek

The weather in Eastern Iowa has finally turned beautiful! One of the best things about spring for the boys is that we can go back to the creek. They love riding in the RTV going anywhere, but going to the creek is a super fun treat. Scott has been gone a lot in the fields so we  have snuck away to play in the creek a time or two already this year.

 

Of course we have to have pictures. “Take our picture mom!”

 

 

Searching for rocks and tossing them into the creek makes them all so happy.

 

 

Two of the dogs always come along. They like to water, too!

 

 

Sam likes to check on Reed.

 

 

The Big O always tells us a story  from ‘the old days’ or what scientist would look for when studying our creek.

 

 

Ah, these moments are priceless!

 

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