Monday, October 30

southeast, NE

Hello everyone – thought I would check in and hope that everyone else checks in too.

Weather was absolutely gorgeous this weekend. Did a few outside “get done before snow flies” paint jobs, clean ups, etc.

We’re still waiting for farmer to harvest our corn and beans. He was supposed to get to it last week and then it rained. Have you all noticed what corn prices are doing? Price per bushel is steadily increasing and when I checked this a.m., corn was up to $3 a bushel. That is $1.50 higher than year ago. Supposedly a lot of farmers are holding on and waiting till price gets higher and price is also increasing due to ethanol blend, etc. When ours is harvested, we will probably hang on till at least the end of the year depending on how farm income looks.

DH, neighbor and I moved calves/cows around on Saturday a.m. and dh hauled 11 feeder calves (mostly steers) down to sale barn. No one got hurt, no one screamed, and nothing got loose! Amazing! We also sold a few heifers and steer calves at private treaty club calf sales and were very happy with the results. And Julia also bought a few replacement heifers. She has always wanted a white shorthorn heifer and she finally found one. She calls her “Snowflake”.

Last week Julia and four of her FFA students went to National FFA Convention in Indianapolis. The students (all girls) behaved themselves and they had a great time. Nebraska chartered several buses to haul various chapters. American Express gave each FFA advisor a loaded card $75 to use as they please so she took her students to a “fancy restaurant”. We always chuckle at her though as she is petite and young looking and a lot of people assume she is a student. She was walking through the hotel halls late at night and was chewed out for not being in her room as it was assumed she was a student.

Well better get back to work – you all take care.

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

lol, poor Julia! I can sympathise as I was in the same boat for years. We went to the county fair when the girls were about 9 and 12 and the guy at the ticket booth looked in the car and said, "3 children, 1 adult." My husband didn't correct him! Tell her you do eventually get over it!

Cropping is all done here. We've had so much rain (and snow) that the fields are a mess. Stan is already piling manure - never a good sign. All of the animals are home, 12 heifers still outside. We are selling down cows, heifers, calves and the bull to get everything in. We sold a yearling heifer last week and got a wonderful price. Let's hope the rest go as well.

I had a bad day last Thursday. It was actually a beautiful day and I was just getting ready to go out and do some garden cleaning when my mother's cousin pulled in and said there was a puppy in the road and she was pretty sure it was one of ours. It was Susie, the little female with the half white face that we had decided to keep. She'd been hit and killed. I walked down and carried her home and Stan took her back to the woods. Dogs! What can you do. We had both chased her out of the road or away from the driveway that morning, but she had followed the Amish kids as they were walking by on their way home from school. At least it was quick. It would have been nice if whoever hit her would have stopped, though. If it hadn't been for LouJean, I wouldn't have known as she was out of view of the house down passed the garage.

I hate to leave you on that sad note, but there really isn't much going on here. Stan finished painting the front of the other shed. I'll have to get a picture of it. Not quite as dramatic as the quilted shed, but interesting.

take good care,

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

We have had some nice rain here the last few weeks, but it has kept a few people from getting their last bit of corn and beans out. The guy that leases our crop land hasn't gotten all of his out and our cousins still have their beans out. They have been working frantically to put up another bin..

That bin has been quite the project. They bought it used and have stored it in the corner of a barn for twenty years.. What pieces went where was not marked, So it had to be the world's largest jigsaw puzzle.. But they finished it yesterday..

Our middle daughter always looked younger than her age. We took her to check her in at an airport one time, I think she was 18 - or 19. They asked if she was traveling alone.

Kathleen, So sorry about your dog..

Falls Mills, VA

We had a calf born last week. We hadn't expected this arrival, the cow must have been breed when we bought her last spring.

Thumbnail by Virginian
Benton, KS(Zone 6a)

yes, sorry to hear of your dog....I had 2 hit at the same time when they jumped my fence a couple yrs ago.

As for the kids looking younger, my daughters don't really have that problem, they have a different one. Lynn is 16 and Mandi is 13....both are 6 ft tall! They're awsome girls though. It was kinda funny to listen to their 19 yr old brother talk about how big his 13 yr old sister was....she's not fat but she's not a twig. He said it would certainly hurt if she decided to kick ya! All I could do was laugh when I herd him describe his sister to a friend....

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

Good to hear from everyone. DH went to training in NC but ends up he will not go to Iraq after all - yippeee! So I promptly put him back to work building the fence around the garden area - 15 fence posts in the ground and about 25 more to go. I love fencing - or, maybe more acurately, I love DH fencing :-) The 4 inch welded wire fence will enclose the garden and chicken run & coop - the chicken run will have it's own fence - meaning that canines will have to cross two fences and a line of electric fence down at chipmonk/dog nose diggin level before they can get in at the hens next spring. I hope it's enough.

Sorry to hear about the puppy. And glad to hear about the new calf. The ying and yang of life.

Duke, our Weimaraner from the rescue has succeded in solving the rabbit problem... but I'm not sure who is more destructive - a bunch of rabbits or one of him! He knocked the baby peach tree to a 45 degree angle the other day as he ran after a bird, head in the air, eyes on the bird - body at a dead run - I don't think he even noticed the tree, the little fence around it, or the stake that nearly impaled him. He certainly didn't notice me chasing him and yelling like a banshee! He stopped when he crashed full force into the chainlink fence that boarders the property. He's a little slow to learn - or very focused - although this is the first time he ran through a (small) tree, he's crashed into the fence a few times when his eye was on a bird. He's very loving, though and brings me all kinds of avian presents - like a cat would. The bird feeder empties when he goes outside now.

Peach and Nectarine leaves are turning orange; apples trees are still green. Autumn Blaze maples are blazing. Fairview maples and the Cimaron (sp?) Ash are all bare. I supposedly dead virbirnum looks like it might be alive. Sweet gums are starting to change to their autumn coats of orange and red. It's almost time to put holiday ribbons on the pine trees.

A few hundred more spring bulbs to plant, and I'm ready for winter!

Ice in the water buckets and hoses at night, but the days are spectacular - bright, clear, cloudless and blue. A touch of a breeze and 65-70 degrees. Good fence building weather!

You all take care now. Many blessings to you. Karla

Benton, KS(Zone 6a)

Karla, I love your dog story! We have Vizlas which are also bird hunters. Yes, they get VERY focused but can be trained to listen while working with the birds. I've included a pic of 3 of our pups (115 days old when pic taken) and this was after less then an hour of working on their 1st day of training.

Thumbnail by mmistyrose
Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

Virginian, Neat calf. I find it interesting that the calf has what I call goggle eyes... So many of the hereford breeders ( as you probably already know) are breeding for that to help against cancer eye.

We bought our hereford bull without that kind of marking, but all the of the calves from him have goggle eyes. I'm still getting used to it.. I am assuming he had that in his backround.

Karla, How old is your weimaraner ? Sounds like a puppy.. Our cousins went from owning an old farm dog, well behaved to a big puppy with lots of energy.. She is laughable, but gets into soooo much trouble.

Falls Mills, VA

Kathy Jo:
Tell me more about this 'google-eye'. How does it prevent eye cancer? Does it act like the black smudge you used to see under football players eyes? Does it keep too bright sunlight from hitting the eye? Hmmmmm...I had never thought of this as something useful. The kids had been calling this calf 'panda calf'.

It was still tame enough to let me pet its head today but it is getting quicker at evading your grasp.


Falls Mills, VA

Glad to hear your DH is not going to Iraq. I hope they bring everyone home soon. I was in the reserves for 10 years and trained in NC at Camp Lejeune. Was this the same place your DH trained?


Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Hi farmers. Our overnight temperatures have dropped to 7 degrees, and there are willow, cottonwood and poplar leaves all over the ground looking like gold coins. My hubby and son trimmed a lot of big limbs off the trees in our yard this weekend, using a boom truck and a chainsaw, so I have been trimming the smaller branches off them and hauling them to burn piles. Some of them came down in pieces, some whole limbs and a lot of them landed in flower beds. I'm trying to remove them carefully and hubby will get into it with his chainsaw and cut the big ones into firewood. This weekend they also replaced the last 4 windows in the house, so now we have low E, gas filled, real insulated windows in the whole house. Hubby still has to replace the trim around these last 4, both inside and out. Outside first of course, the inside can be done in stormy weather.

My vegie garden still has the beets, some carrots and potatoes to get out of the ground. I can work on that today along with snipping branches. Rain/snow are forecast soon, but the real winter shouldn't set in for another 3 weeks. We still want to get some firewood, but fire season kept us out of the woods when we had time to do it, and now I'm not sure we can get in there because of snow. It's a good thing we stay a year ahead of the firewood because this year we are burning the last that we have. Hubby is planning to have a propane furnace installed in the basement so we at least have a backup system.

Kathleen, I'm sorry to hear about the puppy getting killed on the road. It's sad to loose them anyway that it happens, but as you said, at least it was quick. I'll be looking for the picture of the shed.

Keith, that's a nice surprise calf. You didn't say if it is a bull or a heifer. The dark pigment around the eyes does help prevent cancer eye. Usually when we see a cow with a cancer eye it is one with light pigment around the eyes, like whitefaced Herefords. The calf you have looks like it might be about 1/4 Hereford. The first cross with angus usually produces a solid colored calf with a white head, and the next cross gives a lot of panda faced markings. What does the mother look like? As for petting the head of a calf, it seems to encourage butting, so scratching them on the back is better and they are more comfortable with that than having their heads petted anyhow.

Karla, good news that your hubby won't be deployed to Iraq. Where will he be instead? I had to laugh when I read the description of Duke running over your poor little tree. I guess you could say he has a one track mind.

KathyJo, maybe the goggle eyes on your calves are just the result of cross breeding. Is the bull a purebred? What breed are the cows?

I hope all of the beans and corn get harvested/stored before the weather makes that impossible, and sold for a good price. Do the fields get turned in the fall or will you wait for spring? I always rototill my vegie garden in the fall and again in the spring. Last year I was turning the crop residue under when the snow was falling all around me. My hubby laughed but didn't think about taking my picture.

The northwest region endurance season finished up last week with a ride in the central Oregon high desert that started out with ice on the water buckets and about 25 degrees and got to near 80 by mid afternoon. Breezy already had grown his winter coat so I had to work to try to keep him cool, but then as soon as the sun went down it got cold again. We finished about a half hour after dark and I was getting cold already. As soon as he got unsaddled he got a warm blanket for the night. I don't blanket my horses at home because they can move around to stay warm enough, but at a ride he is tied to the trailer. I was also thankful that my living quarters furnace worked so I could get warm again in the evening. The temp was about 30 again by bedtime and there was ice in the buckets again the next morning.

Well folks, I'd better get myself moving. I've had my oatmeal with dried cranberries and raw sunflower seeds on top, and now need to get dressed and get my horses fed. I also need to go pick up my bulb order from my neighbor, why did the company send them out so late? Two neighbors and I ordered our bulbs together to get a discount and split the shipping charge. I've forgotten now what I ordered, but I do remember that they were things I didn't already have. Hmmm, where to put them?

Falls Mills, VA

The calf is a heifer. Her mother is a white faced Angus. I don't know what the father was. She was breed before we got the cow. When first born the calf was a deep red color but by the next day her fur had turned black. She is getting frisky now, today she was running and kicking up her heels.


Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

Thanks, everyone, for your concern. I guess I should explain that DH was going to to over as a civilian contractor - again. (My website on the topic if you're interested: ) DH has been out of The Corps for over 10 years, but apparently that didn't improve his IQ (I can say that because he is My Jar Head ;-) I am just beginning to realize that when I said "I do" 18 years ago, that I married The Corps for life, even if DH isn't active duty any more. We have lots of sand, sand storms, sand brown-outs, tripple digit temps for months on end in the summer - and I've got lots of fences, a chicken coop and a goat barn to build to entertain him if he's looking for hard labor - not sure why he prefers the Sand Box in the Middle East to the one in the back yard! Anyhow, yes, Keith, he's been to Camp Lejeune - but I think it was 29 Palms that fried his brain. He LIKEs the desert... Well, last time I pitched a fit because it was a cut in pay, and after the summer, I had had enough of penny pinching and told him it was time to come home from Summer Camp. Spoiled I am. Anyway, I digress...

Duke (the Weim) is barely over a year old - grew up in a pet store and has had 4 owners before us and then spent several months at a foster home. He understands "sit" and how to walk on a leash, but he really doesn't have any maners or self control - probably stemming from being from a broken home. I don't think he was ever allowed to indulge his chasing instinct before. I know his previous owners were not ready for a 70 lb dog with endless energy - and he's going to be bigger than breed standard when full grown, so he'll probably be closer to 90 lbs of bouncing energy. I can't bring him in the house until he's run the perimeter of our 4.77 acres at least 2 or 3 times - about 350 feet each circuit. He's a sweetie, though. Starting to have a personality other than timid and worried. Even seems to enjoy himself. We miss Jake, our Weim who passed away several months ago, but it'll be worth the energy to provide Duke with a forever home after all he's been through. I'm glad we decided to find a rescue dog... mmistyrose, your dogs are beautiful.

Always learn something interesting here - had no idea about the cows and eye cancer. I love watching the baby cows running and jumping around like very large puppies. I used to commute through hills that had cows and I would watch the cycle of birth and growing up and then going away (to be packaged up for dinner, I'm supposing). They always seemed so happy and enjoying a good cow-type existance with thousands of acres to roam (and an occational highway to go on walk-about). I always felt a little sad when the older ones disappeared, but at least they got to be raised on open range and act like cows.

We're still in double digits here at night - a mere 24 *F the other morning - but I hear that the first snow is just a few days away - meaning it'll probably warm up some. 60s during the day. All these weather changes are very exciting to one from the San Francisco Bay Area. Even when I lived in GA there weren't really seasons. This is our second winter here, and it already feels like we're settling into a rhythm and a harmony with the cycles of the world. It's a really good feeling. I know I can never go back to the suburbs or the city ever again.

Many blessings to you. Karla

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