I haven’t written in a while. Not since the cattle have been dry-lotted on pasture hay. Which was as soon as I rounded them up and sold the last of the bulls. I may have a couple four hundred pounders left. I was out of good pasture here at home and I didn’t want the cows to overgraze so I confined them to the barn yard. Well, two barnyards to be exact. Last summer I rearranged the cement feed bunks and divided the one yard into two. It makes sorting the cattle much easier. If one gets by me it doesn’t disappear around the barn so the others think there’s a way out. Now it has to stand by the divide fence where all the others can still see it. That usually leads to it wanting to rejoin the others for a safer feeling. No herding animal wants what is perceived as a predator between them and the herd. Separation from the herd is the first step in stalking/killing and they sense that. A noble instinct.

The bulls brought good money. Even slim Jim with the frozen off tail. If it’s beef the market wants it. I’m still tempted to off the whole herd. Call the trucker and send them to the sale barn. Or at least all but maybe sixteen. The number I started out with back in the eighties. I’d be back up to a hundred before I knew it. I seem to have more girls born than boys. Not just the human kind. When I sold off the northern herd a year and a half ago I had eighty five percent heifer calves in the calf crop. Which was handy since I had told my brother who’d bought them that I would except the heifer price (usually lower) than the steer price for the calves. He was going to have to cut (castrate) the bulls to make steers. That adds labor and may set the calves back while they heal. It also increases the chance for illness and some have even died from the procedure. I know I would. I’m not that noble.

I am a father however. Six times as far as I know. A full bull. On a full pull. I hope. I’m not out of the gate yet. I still have one aged seven. Eleven to go. I think I can make it. Barring any fatal accidents. Or the complications that can arise from such. I have five of the most wonderful daughters and had one of the most wonderful sons any father could ask for. I know we all say that but that’s because it’s true. To us they are. To them we are. Even though it’s not perfect no one treats us better than our immediate family. Especially when we then they get moved out on their own. Brothers and sisters are much easier to get along with after they’ve moved away from home. I saw it in my siblings. Now I’m seeing it in the kids. Every gent in his own tent. But then the buck stops there. No one else allowed. I’m all for family. One per house. A noble idea?


Post Script,

I missed the opportunity to bring this up on Mother’s Day and almost forgot today.

The real reasons for Mother’s and Father’s Days.

In the spring when showers are plentiful and days are getting longer more grass and other vegetative growth is increasing daily. Given all other odds against it spring is the time in nature when one of the best windows of opportunity for bringing into this world and raising up a grazing animal opens up. So if you are an owner of these animals and tasked with their dependency on you to thrive a potential mother should have given birth by the day with the date designated Mother’s Day. If not she’s to be sold. She’s no mother you want to own/manage from here on out since she won’t cycle to be re bred in time for a spring calving next year. If you want to make sure that is going to happen in a herd of cattle you need to refrain the bulls from breeding the herd until nine months prior. If you turn in the bulls in the middle of June on the day with the designation Father’s Day you’ll start to have the potential to calve in the middle of march. Just in time for spring. So your Mother’s/Father’s day present is the right to be present. It’s time to breed.



As of sundown last evening. The rain was minimal. Around five o’clock as I drove up north to see how dry it was getting everybody and there dog was out planting something. The next door neighbor was planting in the cornstalks. I should say both next door neighbors. One up north and one down home. The one up north was planting beans but the other next door neighbor up north running a grain drill was running in bean stubble. Beans on beans? The third next door neighbor was still planting corn in bean stubble. CO-OP was just finishing up there too as I headed home. The two youngest daughters were along for the ride so we stopped in town at the park to let them play a while.

It doesn’t look like the tile line guys work on Saturdays. The welder guy does. He was over west hiding from a shower in his truck cab when I pulled up. The Vacuum’s ready to roll. The CO-OP boys were applying the corn weed and feed there as we finished up welding the guy wires (chains) to the auger tube bracket. That’s my patent to reenforce the self supporting auger better. I’ve seldom met a machine that didn’t need a tweak here and there. It should be good to go for another hundred thousand bushels. Given a little duct tape and baling wire. My older brother is planting corn for the guy that sold me the vacuum so as long as they get along it sounds like I can have used parts cheap.

If I don’t log on tomorrow have a happy Mom’s day.

See you then, see you there.