Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A Fair Week

When I married a cattle farmer, and learned how to help with the cows, I knew there would be a lot of things I'd do that I never imagined I'd do.  This week at the fair has been no exception.  There's been a lot of experiences I didn't see myself in 10 years ago.  I'll share a list of those things....

  • I've had the side of my foot stomped by the steer...hard!  I've been stepped on before the this one HURT
  • I was peed on
  • I was pooped on
  • I got drenched with the hose "accidentally" while my husband was washing calves.  Stay away from our wash will get wet.
  • I fell off the tractor
  • My new boots gave me blisters
  • I sat in the cattle barn in the heat
  • I shared the fans with the heifers, who were fine with that if it meant chin scratches for them
  • The farmers tan returned!  ugh
  • I got to teach my nephew how to play Tetris on my smartphone
  • I was able to spend lots of time with my husband, nephew, and brother-in-laws
  • I got to buy my nephew ice cream
  • I experienced the fair in a whole new way
  • I sat in the stands with my dad and my in-laws and was a nervous wreck.  I love going to livestock shows with my Dad.  He used to do livestock judging so I learn a lot
  • I got the "#1" sign from my nephew when his heifer won Champion Angus Heifer and glares from the show ring because I was taking his picture...a lot
It's been a really fun week!  I've learned a lot, and so has my nephew.  I love this life, and even though I do things all the time I never dreamed I'd be doing, I wouldn't trade it for anything.  I can't wait for next year.

I'll post pictures from tonight's show for Wordless Wednesday tomorrow.

Monday, July 18, 2011

One Hot Show

I hate hot weather.  I always have.  If Indiana stayed in the 50-70 degree range all year long I would be one happy girl.  Unfortunately, July in Southern Indiana has had an insane number of 90 degree days, and as I'm typing this, my husband told me that the heat index could be 110 degrees tomorrow.  Normally, I would choose the coolest day of the week to mow the yard, prune my roses in the early morning before it gets too hot and stay in the air conditioning as much as possible.

It's a good plan in theory, but not this week.  It's fair week here, and our nephew is showing calves for the first time.  Getting the calves ready for all these months has been a true family affair.  Nick and I halter broke them (and several others) back in the fall when they were still relatively small.  We've spent countless hours walking them and making sure they were gentle enough for our nephew to handle them as he's not been too sure about this whole cattle show thing.  My brother-in-law has spent most mornings since school got out washing the calves and teaching our nephew how to set them up.

Unfortunately, my brother-in-law hurt his knee last Thursday and could hardly walk on Saturday when it came time to move the calves and get them ready for the 4H show.  That meant a 14 hour day for me and Nick that started a little before 6 am thanks to my Mom's dog who was staying with us.

It was a hot experience, although tomorrow promises to be worse.  Nick and I spent the morning (after we got everything unloaded and weighed in) washing all three calves while my brother-in-law dried them with the blower since that required the least amount of movement on his part.  We had to make another trip to the farm, I fell off the tractor and scraped up the palm of my hand, finished getting the calves ready, made a quick trip home to shower and change, and then went back to the fairgrounds to get things ready to my nephew to show.  He did a great job for his first year, and one of our heifers won Champion Angus Heifer, and the steer won Champion Angus Steer.  My nephew was thrilled he won some ribbons and a trophy or two, and is already making plans for what he's taking next year.  Now if we can just survive the County Born and Raised Show tomorrow night.

I'll leave you with a few pictures of my nephew and his calves.  Stay cool, and for those of you NOT working with livestock at the fair, enjoy your a/c!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

4th on the Farm

Last year, the 4th of July became a big deal for my husband's family.  Nick and his brother bought fireworks, we had a cookout, and Nick and his brothers had a great time embracing their inner teenager setting off fireworks.

Our nieces and nephews LOVED the fireworks, and have been looking forward to this year's celebration since the last one ended.  Our oldest niece is 6, and asked Nick almost every time she saw him if he would set off more fireworks for the 4th of July.

If the kids thought that last year was fun, this year would've been more fun x 10.  This year's festivities included a trip to Tennessee (our vacation with a stop at the fireworks superstore), A LOT more people, and TONS more food.  My husband likes to smoke things his smoker...with wood chips and such.  There's really no way to word that sentence that doesn't make him seem a little suspect.  =)  Anyway, there were 2 pork shoulders, a pork loin, some smoked sausage, and 12! whole chickens, plus all kinds of other stuff.  I made homemade BBQ sauce...3 was ridiculous, and the sad thing was there wasn't much left over.

When  we left Tennessee, Nick put all of our luggage in the back seat of my car.  Why, you ask?  I'll show you why...

Unfortunately, Mother Nature did not cooperate with our plans, and the fireworks show had to be postponed to our county fair week when the family will all be home again.  I'm sure the cattle can't wait for the noise!