Archive for July, 2012

Stop the Flood of Regulations – the EPA’s new “guidance” document

A great overview of another attempt by government to overstep its bounds.


The Boys of Summer

 “Put me in coach…I’m ready to play…”? We just put our boys of summer in the game and out of the bull pen….literally. We turned the bulls out with the cows on the 8th. They get to play for 3 months and then they’ll be out of the game for the rest of the year. That allows us to know which cows are fertile, which are having trouble, which bulls are performing, and have calves that are all born around the same time and a more consistent size. For our direct market customers, this doesn’t matter too much, but for the buyers at the sale barns, it makes a difference. We have 8 bulls, one with a white or bald face, and the rest solid black. They are named Clint Eastwood (baldy), Angus, Cochise (born in the Stronghold), Wart aka King Arthur, Little Bull, and the rest are 110, 111, and 112. They are black because the market buyers, and customers, prefer “black angus” cows. I personally like my red cows but you go with what the market wants.  The picture is of 112 and 113 following the Polaris very slowly….they only move quickly around the cows or to fight (like regular boys eh?).

Monsoon Mania

If you live in Arizona, Thanksgiving really happens in July when the rain starts. “Hip, Hip, Hooray, It’s Monsoon Day!” is not only the title of a charming bilingual children’s book, but the general sentiment in my neck of the woods. If you live in a wet area you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. I submit for your consideration, we haven’t had measureable moisture since January….until the 4th of July! Here’s my favorite things about the summer monsoons:

The natural fireworks

The smell – there is nothing like the scent of rain on the wind in the desert

Huge, gray thunderheads heavy with rain piled up over the mountains

The anticipation – just because it’s raining across the valley does not mean we’ll get any

Dust settled

The world is freshly washed

It’s cool and the air is sweet after the rain – no mugginess

The sight of running water down the ditches

The sound of frogs carrying over 1/2 a mile away from the replenished stock tanks

mud puddles

Everyone whispering and just plain announcing in church – “it’s raining, it’s raining” and not because their car windows are down

feeling of releif

the blush of green that comes over the hills, practically overnight

truly getting the meaning of phrases in the Bible like streams of water in the desert, a dry thirsty land, a tree planted by streams of living water,and how our souls should long for God like longing for rain

While we long for and pray for rain every year, we are thankful when it comes and never, ever, complain about too much!



Diary of a dogie -June moves

We recently moved June into a new pen, aka the garden that didn’t grow, so the goats wouldn’t grow fat on her feed. She is happy because she shares a fence with them. As she grows we will move her into a more permanent pen again. It struck me as we were walking 100 feet how like her we are….she willingly followed as long as the bottle was in her mouth and has never noticed the fences are flimsy and she could get out if she really wanted to. How Satan tempts us with “goodie” and how often do we live in and with fences of our own making?

Dog Days

We all love our dogs, wether they are strictly pets or work for a living. However, any and all dogs will, will, will revert to pack behavior with other dogs. Even if they come home from a stroll with an innocent look on their face, they may have feathers in their mouth! We recently had two dogs come through our yard early in the morning. My son’s pet chicken, the one we intended to use for 4H showmanship at the fair this fall, got snatched. She was still flapping as they ran out the gate so I was shouting drop it! no effect! jumped in the car to follow and hubby grabbed the shot gun. Yes, the dog was shot and killed. Drastic? Yes, but necessary. Once a dog starts killing for sport they don’t stop. The inner wolf comes out. In Arizona you may pursue and dispatch an animal that kills or harasses livestock. We didn’t want to. Would have liked to warn the owner. But now I have a sad little guy on my hands, may have to buy a new chicken, and an angry neighbor who we still don’t know. Pleeease, for everyone’s sake, keep your dogs at home.

June baby

June the dogie calf is growing well and is about twice the size of the photo now. We will move her out of the goat pen and into another calf proof pen this week, as she is big enough to start on a regular feed ration along with milk. The goats like her feed. I still think she’s stealing from the dairy goat too.