Monday July 25, 2011
I choose to start this week like I did the last: HOT. HOT. HOT. And add to that DRRRRY.
We pulled all the bulls away from the breeding pastures, so our spring calving will end about May 1 next year. We tried putting our 0810 bull with the 11 fall yearlings, but they all ganged up on him. So, we rescued him from the mob of young bulls. We penned him in a wooded area to recover and cool down. In the evening, we put him in a spare pasture with our 2-year-old 9622. 9622 gave him the big broadside stance “I am king” look, and they never even butted heads. The other 2 yearlings we had out with cows, we penned separately in the barn area. It is also too hot to combine the cows.
We are waiting anxiously for cooler temps and rain to work cattle. I killed 18 horse flies off of our 9622 bull late this morning. I guess I had a blood-thirsty streak in me and just couldn’t stop. My nephew said if I put dish soap in a tub of water, the horse flies will land and drown (guess the soap downs their wings). I will try anything for those monster flies.
Tuesday July 26, 2011
With the ugly weather, the positive note is the great progress the guys are making on the new compost barn. We want to set trusses in one week. So that is the goal. Bill and Michael love to build and engineer stuff. But the heat is so hard on them.
Tuesday night is our “Take Mom to Liberty Bell” night. The crops this week have deteriorated. We feel bad for the farmers.
Wednesday July 27, 2011
I spotted a cattle trailer for sale when I was returning from Bill’s Mom’s house last night. Bill went to check it out. It is an almost new Eby 20-foot. Perfect for us. We have wanted an aluminum trailer for several years. But when the old Ponderosa works, it never made sense to buy another. But this newer trailer sets higher at the hitch and will work on our new pickup.
I spend all afternoon dragging hoses to water water water the garden, flowers and trees.
Thursday July 28, 2011
A prospective bull buyer stops in and purchases one of our spring yearlings 0204. He was born late last year, and was overlooked by earlier buyers.
With all the bulls in lots, it takes a LOT longer for me to do morning chores. The raccoons dirty the small water tubs so I empty, clean and refill every morning. I have discovered that emptying them in the barn works. It gives the cattle a cooler place to lie down.
Today, I cannot put off a job I detest – quarterly payroll taxes. As I feared, my Peachtree program will not download the updates that I need, so I am stuck. After striking out all afternoon, I call support. The download included some new Microsoft stuff and I failed to click correctly. One little click… isn’t that the story of our lives?
Friday July 29, 2011
When Bill delivered the yearling bull 0204 this morning (in our nice shiny aluminum trailer) he was given about 10 dozen sweet corn. It is wonderful, and I am suddenly in the sweet corn freezing business.
Saturday July 30, 2011
Today I drive to my Mom’s near Fremont. I need to do some much needed yard work for her. She is 92 and still lives on the old farm house where my father was born. I drive north on State Route 127 to Celina, then east to I-75. When I exit at Findlay, the crops improve. They have received rain. In some areas water is standing – in the same low spots where it did this spring. But the crops look wonderful compared to Butler County.
Bill and Michael bring in a cow that is lame and they discover she also has a high fever. We have run out of barn spots and shade spots for all these little groups and somehow the 2 orphans get in with Momma 830 and her lame calf. We think orphan 1803 was kicked by the 830 cow. He is acting very uncoordinated (almost like a case of grass tetany). He develops a fever so Bill is nursing a cow and calf, and I am not there to help. We are so blessed because there are almost always 2 people on our farm to work together between Bill, Michael and me.
Sunday July 31, 2011
Bill is busy caring for cow and calf fighting high temperatures in this heat. He has hung all our house fans on the 2 sick animals. Wetting and giving meds to reduce fever at noon to help them fight the afternoon heat. We are not sure that either animal will survive.
I am still at Mom’s weeding and trimming and visiting family. I chuckle as I am weeding Mom’s peonies. They are very important to her and though, they are done flowering, they need to be weeded now to prepare for next year. They were a gift from her youngest sister, who has been dead for several years. The peonies are a memory of Aunt Hazel, so precious to Mom. Thinking for those memories, makes the weeding more enjoyable.
I pick up a slinger manure spreader that we rent from my nephew. We hope to spread the composted manure and then get the forecast rains next week. It is a long slow drive back to Hamilton at 50 mph, staying off the interstates. One tire seems to be getting hot, so I slow down to 45. I would rather take an extra hour driving, rather than roadside with a flat.