Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year


Carolyn commented on my last post with this...
Non-cattle chick here....
What does it mean to "fit" a steer? Does he have somewhere fancy to go and needs to squeeze into a size 30 pair of slacks?
I figured a post would be more appropriate than a reply so...
Fitting cattle involves washing them and rinsing very good. Leaving any soap/shampoo in will cause flaky skin or hair loss among other things.Rinsing with vinegar helps with skin ailments.
After bath the animal is blown out using  blower that is similar to a giant hair dryer. Some have heat choices and different speeds or power settings. You blow against the natural hair growth pattern which usually means everything is blown forward and slightly up. This promotes more hair growth in the long run but makes hair more workable in the moment.
From here fitting starts with clippers. LN's steer head was clipped down fairly close too and blended in at the neck which was clipped down but a lil less than head. One reason each is clipped is to make rest of body appear bigger/stouter. It also emphasises masculinity in the frame. A females is clipped to show its femininity too. Each in a different way.
Body hair is trimmed of loose, long pieces and shaped and worked to show a boxy, more square frame.
Tail is clipped/shaved part way down to allow butt or rear view to appear bigger and wider.
Tail end is clipped off near knee joint. Why? I don't know just is ;^]
Top line (hair along ridge of back) is trimmed to end slightly up at the back end to create a nice line of sight.
Leg hair is blown out and products used to enhance it's depth to make natural size of legs look even bigger.
Products are used on hooves and hair coats to shape and define everything.
It's a process that takes hours and lots of months of prep.
Cattle are given regular (every day is ideal) washing or at least rinsing  to promote hair growth.
The colder the animal is kept the better it grows and maintains hair needed for fitting.
In winter we leave the side of their pen open but protected from elements like rain and in the summer we put fans turned on them all day.
Colored animals are kept inside during days so their hair color doesn't sunburn.
There is tons more info but this is a very short condensed accounting of the fitting process.
If I didn't bore you to sleep...
Happy New Year!!!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Cold Day Stuff

Think she's bagging up?
Almost time ;]

Bellies are full ... soon

What else to do on a cold, windy day but wash and fit a steer?
Doesn't LN look happy?
Do you like your washing outfit? 

Her BIL S2 and his friend were coming to clip and fit her steer.
Time to see how he's doing.
Gem's in the background eating as usual.

Of course the steer moved as I shot the picture.
S2 and LN were setting him up for C the fitter to assess.
He weighed 770# so I'm doing my job creeping him along slowly.
Plenty of time till July.
Today between few hours cleaning steer pen & helping wash the beast
I set up lambing jugs and most of kidding pens.
S finished his goat door but didn't set up fencing needed.
He did replace the board a steer tore up 2 yrs ago though.
Why rush things ya know?
He also finished washer repairs from last month so I have hot water again if I want it.
He tried to level it but it doesn't seem to be the case.
I hate that washer.
It always throws up codes which shuts itself off mid-load and drives me nuts.
I had to split a regular load the other day and re-wash each one.
The amount was what I normally have been washing for the last 5 years.
It finally finished 2 small loads today w/o issues after S cleaned trap that noone tells you about
but his buddy whose machine genius showed us.
He pulled 3 bobby pins and 2 small metal things so I would think that wasn't it but who knows.
Computer boards are for the birds!

Saturday, December 29, 2012


Nothing makes you feel old like going to the gym with your 13 yr old that is an active sports freak who wears a size 00 or on her fat days maybe a 0.
Seriously who decided to make 00 or 0"s?
Some sadistic man I'll bet since their pant sizes don't have a 0 they start around a 30!
Anyway we went this afternoon and she had to outshow or outwork me without breaking a sweat.
I did go and do my hour of cardio and sweated my *#@ off as usual.
LN wants to go back with me.
Hmmm she is motivation when there isn't a trainer so....?
She loved the elliptical imagine that.
I tend to HATE it, just saying.
But I did 10 min on elliptical, 30 on treadmill, 15 on rower and 12.5 on bike.
She laughed at me and said "lets keep going".
Told you she's crazy.
I'm glad I went and I feel accomplished.
Now I can shower and relax ...
except for animal chores, dinner, laundry and then maybe knit on my new project.
Tomorrow's another day...
Wish this was here but no snow just more rain and mud.
Snow was less than an hour north of us.
Go figure huh?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Checking in

I'm still upset over goat and kids deaths,
The ewes and other nannies are due Jan 1 until ???
I put buck and ram in on August 1st.
I know 1 nanny that looks ready to explode. I'm betting on triplets from her.
She isn't a "friendly" nanny, more like "leave me alone I'll get the job done".
Sounds like her primary caretaker to be honest :^}
She is a seasoned vet so I'm not worried just anticipating.
Another nanny is Wendy our 1st nanny , she is 10 yr old.
The best Mom ever but this will be her last kids.
Mary is the last  nanny but has never kidded, she's 2 so I'll watch her pretty close .
I did make decisions about the older 3 nannies but S decided he would breed 3 young ones against my wishes. I do better than 90% of the work with animals but that didn't matter.
Can you tell I'm a little bitter?  Senseless deaths piss me off.
Anyhow the ewes are all due but I don't have much individual bits on them.
Sheep are more independent and although I walk through them and feed and care for them
they could care less about me. I still like sheep best though. Again like their owner!
Thankfully all lambing and kidding will be over before cattle deliver in March and June.
I have some prep work to do to get ready but I started with LN putting the sides on ewes inside pen.
I lock them in at night if I suspect someone is close although they prefer to stay out.
It makes night time checking easier and I have caught a few in time to jug them before delivery.
I have a few jugs in a stall that I put if-y looking ewes in at night just to separate a bit
and give  community pen more room for remaining ones to spread out.
If noone delivers I turn them all out each day.
S cut a hole in the barn to the goat area we use at kidding time.
Before we had to lock up steer/heifers to move nannies and kids outside during days and reverse process at night. I ask him to cut a hole and create an alleyway so there is a more direct route the goats can come and go. He started it and cut hole but stalled after that.
Hopefully this weekend he'll finish up before kidding starts.
For now goats have 2 calf hutches in the front lot where I can see them during the day.
I don't like those finicky creatures there at night if they kid.
They don't seem smart enough to bring kids in and I don't want frozen kids.
I'll lock them in pen at night starting Sunday or Monday I think.
Getting up during night stinks but necessary. I can't afford cameras but am considering a baby monitor if they are powerful enough. I wonder if they come with 2 sets besides base?
I could put one in goats and other in sheep.
Hmmmm I wonder??? 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Quick but Not

I bought 3 skeins of varigated yarn a few months ago.
After finishing the orange lacey nightmare of a scarf (sorry no pics on Christmas of R with it)
I pulled this out..
Looks are deceiving but pretty right?
I was thinking a chunky scarf.
Note to self- self you should def read labels.
I could not cast on because it actually looks like this...

It opens to lattice work with a tighter band or ribbon at bottom.
I was stumped.
Again note to self- self read label NOW.
I did and you don't "cast" on you weave through the upper row of lattice work to begin
then turn and knit using loops pulled through another opening as you knit.
Get it? I didn't so I read again then Eureka!

Look it's a Beethoven era cravat fall type of scarve.
Fast but annoying.
I didn't have bamboo needles in this size 7 and the metal ones slipped yarn quick.
I had a hard time holding it together.
I could have finished in 1 day but I took 3 because it was Christmas Eve morning
when I started . I knit maybe 3 hours.
Christmas day maybe another hour and today another hour.
Pretty quick results I thought.
LN was happy.

She tried different styles.
After present openings she has begun her 1st day back to school outfit designs.
Not sure if this will make the cut but it should make the 1st week back choices.


                                                     I now have to decide what's next???

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

25th part 2

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care.
Except in LN's case it was ...
The stockings socks were given in CHEER.
She received 13 pairs of cheerful socks this Christmas.
She is the Queen of Socks!
The 12 and 13th  (if you're counting) is 2 pairs of Bright NEON Green soccer socks.
Here's a few close-ups.

These are mis-matched Christmas socks. Don't you love the toe icons?

Thick sports socks as well as crazy colors

I think these came with the Partridge Family bus, do you agree?

LN said she doesn't even need shoes with these.

Aztec anyone?

                                           Boo or should we say Hoo with these 2 pairs?

Always have room for sheep feet. I'm trying to talk her out of this pair.

Goose was unimpressed by the activities.
We ate enchiladas and MIL brought pretzel salad with her.
A few things were not cheerful today.
One of the young goats went into premature labor and I had to pull 2 dead huge kids.
We gave her meds and hope she lives.
I hate that part of animal husbandry and it is someones fault for breeding such a young goat.
She seems to be drinking and nibbling and seems to have turned around in the pen I put her in.
I came inside from that fiasco and had to shower from well you know ...
I went down to kitchen to wash dishes and start dinner prep.
A few dishes into it the water cut off.
Great so S goes into pump room in basement and he hears water flowly loudly.
Seems sink supply pvc pipe broke in 2 pieces and flooded corner of basement.
That required stopping S's project of cutting small goat door in side of barn wall and becoming plumber right quick. After hour of cleanup and repair prep continued.
In the chaos and mental frustration of remainder of day I did not take any pictures of R & Z's visits.
R was happy with her 3 scarves, book, & TOMS shoes.
Her hubby S2 liked his hunting underduds.
S received a new truck seatcover, his is in bad shape and overworked on deliveries.
Z accepted his money gifts and talked awhile with me and LN (a rare occurrence).
He doesn't take to attention directly or accepting gifts but he tries with me.
It seems he is trying to qualify for a mortgage as a 1st time home owner and purchase a small starter home. He is only 22 yr old but if he can he will.
He said he can pay mortgage as well as rent.
We'll see what plays out but more power to him and I'll help as I can.
All and all not a bad day.
I received clothes from R she's the best at stocking me up.
LN & S gave me Amazon cards as well as a friend so I'm set on my Kindle and otherwise. 

25th 1st part

Merry Christmas
from Mine to Yours
LN never stop smiling. She got up and went to feed all her animals
then came upstairs to get us up.
So dang thoughtful she was.

Even happy about the  requisite books.

Her squirrel necklace thats a watch :}

Owl shirts are banging I'm told.

I'm so not impressed, I could be napping.

LN made and decorated butter cookies yesterday. She's the only one who eats them.
Hope she's hungry!
Funniest thing ever was LN cleaning up the crumbs and icing under the racks on the table and she bumped a tray . It ended in the floor and I about peed my pants laughing.
It make me rethink my bad mood and ended up laughing and happy.

My pathetic decorating skills after a frustrating baking attempt seen below.
Cinnamon rolls that were an epic fail.

I know why, I didn't let mixture cool off enough and yeast didn't set or take well.
I also think the whole wheat flour was dense and strong.
I baked 4 dozen , they didn't rise much and were chewy.
I'll attempt again later and will master it.
I'm stubborn , remember?
Be back with other 2 youngins and updates as they occur ;]
Enchiladas for Christmas supper, yummy!
Have a Wonderful Christmas.

Friday, December 21, 2012

a few more

here's a few more of my favorite ornaments
 this is LN's new giraffe with a touch of sparkle
I cross stitched this toy soldier many moons ago

LN cross stitched this sign 3 yrs ago

This was a fair project for LN this yr in latch hook

the drum was made using toilet paper tube and match sticks as a homemade ornament
when my kids had a recycled tree for a 4-H contest 

R made this for me 15 yrs ago
Gosh I'm old

the picture doesn't show how vibrantly red Santa is
he's made of wax
each yr I cross my fingers he doesn't melt in the heat of the storage area under the roof eaves
It's a rainy blah day in DE.
I don't wanna move.
Can I go back to bed?
Yea I didn't think so.
Oops it's end of the world day.
I forgot.
I'll let you know tomorrow how I make out.
A little Mayan humor

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Umm I just realized it's the 20th of December.
I'm slow like that.
I need to find all the gifts I hid from LN.
She's a tad upset that nothing is under the tree but the gifts she bought and wrapped for us.
I have never allowed my kids to believe in Santa and that crap stuff.
I was raised in the church and it was not an option then or now.
I remember Christmas being on a Sunday and being allowed to open my gifts but I was not allowed to play with them because it was a day to worship Christ and we had to adher to that.
I do not do that to my kids but I never started make believe with them because I don't like when the bubble/lie bursts wide open and kids are mad and hurt about it.
If I am nothing I am brutally honest with people like it or not. My sister doesn't like it but if it's a spade it's a spade. I've raised the kids the same way and they are just like me in that respect.
Sometimes I have to call them back or temper what they say because of it.
I still believe if you don't want an honest answer don't ask the question.
Sometimes my sister starts a conversation with me by saying, "ok don't talk, just listen and don't say I told you so. I know your opinion".
Back to Christmas
I just believe in it being Jesus' birthday period.
We give gifts to kids and they have always known that with no ill effects.
We give them gifts to celebrate Jesus' birthday.
I collect santas and snowmen just like I collect sheep and livestock things.
It fun but not real.
Am I a meany? Maybe, probably but that's fine with me.
This world is too gray and pc for my liking.
Make a stand and stop straddling the fence or you'll have a sore you know what.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Maybe MamaPea infected me?
I have the no posting flu.
I have lots to say ... always!
I just don't feel like posting.
Guess I am posting right now though.
My muscles ache and I'm tried.
I'm not ready for Christmas with gifts or meal preparations.
It'll just be 4 of us on Christmas Eve and MIL requested Ham and I'm out in freezer.
I don't wanna pay for processed ham crap that I can't or should not eat anyway.
I will though , she doesn't ask for much and at 87 she could and should.
Christmas evening I'll make Enchiladas.
There may be 5 or 6 people so fairly small cept one eats for 2 but that's fine as well.
I won't be working with trainer from Saturday to Tuesday so I have to police myself.
He can be a crutch ...that makes me sweat and body burn but still...
He remeasured me yesterday it had been 21 days since 1st time.
I only lost 2 # but 5 % body fat and gained 12# muscle wt.
Weird and I don't get it.
At least all the numbers I want down did go down.
He warned me not to expect much wt loss in pounds and I honestly don't give a darn what number scale says. I care about how I feel and how my clothes fit.
I'm still feeling sad and odd about CT incident.
I really don't get why or the ensuing aftermath the media is doing.
Let the families mourn in privacy please.
I have views too on gun control and school safety but now is NOT the time to spew them.
Nothing will bring those children and adults back.
I am refraining from furthur comment on those issues.
I wish more would do the same.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


LN had two 4-H community service events on Saturday.
Her club filled 25 baskets for the elderly with homemade goods.
This meant we needed 25 donations.
Hence Friday I baked 225 small loaves of Lemon-Blueberry Bread.
It took all day.
I made the same recipe 7 times over.
7 sticks of butter
7 cups of sugar
about 9 cups of blueberries (I added extra)
a dozen lemons
alot of stuff, so much I ran out and had to go for supplies 2/3 of the way through
LN wrapped them after they cooled. I hope the recipients enjoy a bit of Christmas cheer.
This cheered me...
It's ceramic and heavy and fun.
Keeps my tea warm alot longer. Yes it's regular black but I drink alot of green tea as well.
Working out and diet modifying is continuing.
I walk as fast as I can on treadmill (w/o running-knees) for an hour and do cardio exercises each day
 if I don't go to the gym with my trainer.
So far so good.
Food stinks. I don't care for chicken breast or fish but I eat it.
Still yuck!
A few family members are opposed to my working out.
Seems it interferes with their expectations of what I should spend my energy and time on.
Not gonna stop me just pisses, yes I said piss, me off and makes me work harder.
I may never be bikini ready or win Mrs. America but that isn't my goal.
I'll go till I'm ready to say, "I like me".  

I'm trying

I'm trying to adjust after Connecticut.
It's devastating news and brings things into perspective clearly.
I will try to never seperate from my children while angry with them.
I'll get mad and yell cause I do but I will remember to make it ok when we part.
They have to always know I love them and will try to do whatever I can to protect them.
I may not be able but I'll try.
Life does go on albeit with great sadness.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Love your child

On this sad day I would like everyone to love your child tonight.
Hug them long and hard and don't let go for awhile.
Every child deserves love regardless.
It won't bring back the 20 children and 6 adult Connecticut victims
but it will re-enforce your love for your child.
They need to know...
I wish I knew.
It's a hard time for me because of my parents but
 In NO WAY as hard as the families in Connecticut will have to deal with as they grieve.
No sense at all
No excuse

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


I love older people, ie. my parents age or older.
They have so much to teach s if we listen.
I try to listen.
Hence... Hopki!
Hopki is a Japanese citizen living in the US since about 1970.
She is in her late 70's .
She is so interesting to talk to if I can understand her.
She met and married a US serviceman in Japan where he was stationed in the late 60's.
He tried to re enlist and stay in Japan as long as possible but inevitably he had to come home.
Hopki came with him against her wishes but she loved him.
Her husband passed away about 12 yrs ago.
She remained her all alone with no family or children here.
She says it's familiar now so she isn't going back since her parents and siblings are gone.
She loves animals and will spend her money to feed all of them very well.
She feels that each opussum, racoon, shunk, squirrel, bird and dog needs love and feed
She brings our dog biscuits and bones by the pound.
I remind her that we are a feed and livestock business and sell those products.
She brings us food like shrimp chips, candy and peanuts in shell.
Again I sell 50# bags of peanuts in our business.
She is so generous and thoughtful now I  just said Thank-you and accept.
She lives alone and drives herself.
She needed her license renewed to the federal type.
At DMV they gave her the requirements and she told them she was born in Japan.
Again they gave her the requirements, ya know your 1st born and multiple copies of everything?
She again told them I was born in Japan.
They insisted so...
Miss Hopki brought her Japanese birth certificate all 6-7 ft of it.
Written in Japanese and never translated.
DMV actually went and hired a translator to authenticate she was telling the truth.
They eventually gave her the federal license.
If you could have heard her heavily Japanese accented story you would have busted a gut like I did.
I wish I would have been there to watch the bureaucracy being given their comeuppance by a 4'6" Japanese lady who just wants to drive to buy animal feed, bird seed and dog bones. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Another Tuesday

What else is there to say on another Tuesday?
I'm still working out and have changed my food choices.
That doesn't interest me but I am trying.
There's something about dry chicken breast I do not like based on texture mostly.
I am sticking though.
S went to Vegas to visit with his oldest son for a week.
His son is roping in the National Team Roping going on simultaneously in Vegas
with National Finals Rodeo about 1/2 hr apart in the city.
Both events are filling the city of sin up with cowboys.
With S away I am home bound and have to work with my trainer at night.
I must be part bear because dark winter nights are for hibernating.
Regardless I am going after I close the store.
I leave LN list of chores and supper and I'm off.
I haven't reach "good feelings" others warn me of when they exercise but I'm hopeful.
I think the whole time of what else I need to do and how much time is left.
That's why Yoga never worked for me.
I could never shut my mind off to "relax".
I still have Christmas decorations to put up but I'm stalled  at 50%.
I did get to porch lights and barn wreath so I think that's enough, don't you?
I have given away things I have sorted and don't use anymore.
I'll go through the rest and purge at least.
The tree and window candles are pretty at night so that helps my mood.
Come on Wednesday (I have a rest day with trainer) lol.
I just want metabolism.
Is that too much to ask for?
Hello Santa ...???

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Teaser

Remember the teaser? A bolt of shiny polyester mix fabric?

I cut 20" across the width of bolt and sewed it together to form a tube.
Pinned and sewed a 1 1/4" top sleeve and a 1/2" bottom hem.

Insert elastic in the sleeve and sew shut.

Waalaaa... do it 8 times over and you have ...
A Candy Cane skirt for the float for 8 girls last Friday night.
No pictures of the parade or float because
it POURED cats and dogs and Mama ain't ruining her new camera.
I will try to find a picture from another parent.
As for Picasa issues...
If I download my pictures to Google (plus) then I can upload them to Blogger without paying.
It takes longer but doesn't cost me to download.
This blog was to be an online diary/blog .
 I will not pay to add  photos and I think a blog without pics is boring.
I don't care wether anyone else reads it or just me I like pictures.
I tried to copy/paste but can't so I'll see how this goes. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Help me PLEASE

I believe others have had this issue but I can't find the answer now, go figure.
I can't download pictures anymore.
Google which took over Blogger says I've maxed out the Picasso file and have to pay.
Does anyone have advice as to how to fix this issue?

The Tree

LN & I picked out, set up and decorated our tree today.
Umm small issue, tiny , miniscule really.
After finishing before putting on my burlap tree skirt I filled the stand
and guess what??? Surprise, Surprise, Surprise !!!
The stand cracked and leaked all over .
I had a temper tantrum that was un-Christmas like to say the least.
A temporary bowl under the stand with a towel under the whole soaking mess
will suffice until S brings home a new tree stand.
Tomorrow the 3 of us will work in tantum to move the decorated tree to a new home.
Sounds easy and fun right?

I think it came out pretty but hard to see even with flash.
I need to take daylight pictures.

LN snapped some of her favorite ornaments such as her giraffe, she's obsessed.

One of her several soccer ornaments. Think it looks like her?

I believe this is her 1st grade ornament.
I try to add one each year for her future collection.
She has never seen the Jetsons but loves this set .

LN loved Bob the Builder when she was young so Wendy is always used.
LN named her 1st market goat Wendy when she was 3 yr old.
Wendy is still with us at 10 yrs old now.

Who doesn't love Arthur? Another younger childhood memory.

Gotta have a 4-H nod of course.

My new addition to the flock.

A few other ewes .

A cutie patootie

I made this Santa in multiples as a teacher's gift a few years ago.

I don't even remeber this friendly snowman but I like it.

A sparkily 3D snowflake that's vintage. I have 2 of these sparklers.
I love me some peanut butter cups so LN thought this was a good gift last year.

I love this handpainted light bulb I scored at a craft show a long time ago.
Well doesn't everyone have a naked Santa on their tree?

Again LN thought this was so me one year.

I was not amused but grew to like it a little.
This is just a teeny tiny sample of out wacky tree.
No color coordinated yuppy tree for us.
LN told me about her friends tree like that, she said "it's so impersonal".