Friday, March 30, 2012


Hank had a good workout today.  
 I had to ride him across the river to check the water gaps that we had just repaired because it rained hard again and we were needed to move some cattle to this section. (that's the house and barn way over on the hill)  Luckily, all of the repairs held and my next chore was to round up 24 cow calf pairs to move onto the new grass.
 They actually did well.  This was a little hold up while the calf figured out how to get back out of the mud.  Hank was hoping he wasn't going to have to go in after him. 
Then there were two that didn't want to go through the gate.  The cows had all gone in so I was sure the calves would go eventually which they did.  J said he might have to hire me and Hank all summer since we did so well.  This has been the earliest we have ever been able to start turning the cattle out and stop feeding hay. YEA!
Update on Hank's biopsy.  2 pathologists read it as squamous cell carcinoma in situ (very early stage without invasion into deeper tissue) and 1 read it as squamous metaplasia ( abnormal tissue that may or may not develop further into squamous cell carcinoma.)
So now it is wait and see.  If more abnormal tissue develops then it is more aggressive removal followed by cyrotherapy.  I'm glad I went ahead with the biopsy.  Just because they are specialists doesn't mean they are always right.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

E had her second tennis match Tuesday.  This season is the first time she has ever played tennis.
 Her first match she was an alternate but did to play a match. She lost by 2 points.
 Tuesday she played a doubles match and won.
 She also won her singles match.  It was very close and tied for most of the game.  They even had to play a tie breaker which she finally won.  I think it probable lasted over an hour and was getting dark.
This was my favorite picture that I got during warm-ups. I didn't see her ducking any balls during the games.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Hank had his appointment at the Vet School for the ophthalmologist to check out his eye.  Growing up I had a horse that had squamous cell carcinoma and we lost the horse because of it.  So I am very leery of the problem and may be a little irrational concerning my own horse.   
 Hank however was very calm and collected.
 They did give him a mild sedative.
 And they did a nerve block and topical anesthetic.
 The ophthalmologist thought the lesion might be inflammation from an immune mediated condition and not squamous cell carcinoma.
To make sure he went ahead and removed the visible abnormal conjunctiva (connective tissue around the eye) and sent it for histopath.  I should know the results in a day or two.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chris Cox Ride the Journey

V, E and sister L went with me to the Chris Cox- Ride the Journey clinic Saturday.  It was a 2 day clinic but we were not able to go back on Sunday.
V had her picture taken with Chris,
and E bought his book (with L) and had it signed and a picture.  I took the opportunity to ask about Pep's head set and unwillingness to go forward readily.  From my description he pretty much said she was sour and E was probably just picking at her with the riding crop.  I looked a E and said, "will you listen now that it's coming from Chris Cox!"
We saw an excellent colt starting demonstration.  I've done everything with Otoelene that he did only it took me 6 months and he did it in 1 hour.  
He also had a session on head sets which was more about horsemanship and consistency.  
We all thoroughly enjoyed the day and wished we could have gone back for day two.  There is always more to learn with horses and it helps seeing different techniques.  I highly recommend going if he has a clinic near you.  

Monday, March 26, 2012

First Kids

The goats weren't due to start kidding until April 1, but Tickle decided to go a little early.  
 They were still out roaming over most of the farm but J's excellent checking skills saw her in this wooded section.  V's boyfriend volunteered to help get them to the barn.
 Of course it was raining so everyone was wet and muddy but at least it wasn't cold.  Tickle is one of E's bottle goats from several years ago so because she is more of a pet she was pretty easy to work with.  Her triplets are all doing fine.
 So now the rest of the herd is in the lot near the barn.
Looks like this one might be next.

Friday, March 23, 2012

We had a beautiful foggy morning to gather in the yearlings.
 J already had Hank in the lot for me last night so I could help.
 He also did some prep work around the barn lot putting up a temporary electric wire.
 The calves were feeling frisky.
This group hasn't had much exposure to the horses.  They were more interested in coming up to us and checking Hank out than they were in being herded to the barn.
 With J on the tractor with a bale of hay and Hank the Wonder Horse doing his thing, we finally got the 83 head going in the right direction.
 Then into the barn lot to be sorted.
J cut out 20 small heifers to haul to some rented land and 25 heifers to maybe breed.  The rest were dewormed, vaccinated and implanted and turned back out to graze.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Today's Extra

This is a quiz.
 What's missing in this first picture?
 That right, the water gap.  All of the water gaps have washed out this winter.
 J had to but on his waders to string the wire back across the creek.
You'd be surprised the places you have to fence cattle out of. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Never Ending

Extra projects are part of life on the farm.  J has to schedule time to do these extras in between all of the daily chores he has. 
 This tree over the fence was today's extra.
 His first comment was, "the fence is ruined."
 But he got to work sawing, then putting a new post in, then tightening.
 Good as new.
I wonder when this one will fall.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Oh No!

Hank the Wonder horse has a problem.  He was trying to get through the gate Monday and while I was trying to hold him back his eye flicked forward and I saw this. 
 A little tumor at the edge of the cornea.
He wouldn't let me look at it so I had to get my camera to take a picture so I could see it better.  I am afraid it  is a squamous cell carcinoma.  But because of the location an small size it should have a good prognosis.  He has an appointment with an opthamologist at the vet school in 10 days.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Here We Go Again

Otoelene has been coming along so well I had an idea that maybe E would like to train a yearling as a 4-H project and maybe sell it in a couple of years for college money.  Surprisingly, she liked the idea.  She said if it kept her from having to show a steer she would do it.  But then she said, "when would I find the time."  I reminded her that she had just watched 13 episodes of Monk on our free Netflix trial.
 So we're back at the farm where we got Otoelene.
 Looking at the yearlings again.  But since we're considering resale I think a gelding might work out better.
 This one has a cute head.
 Not the best picture, but I think this was my favorite.  He's a quarter horse.
 This is his 2 year old full brother.
 This bay is a solid paint, I think J's favorite.
 I thought this filly looked a lot like Otoelene.
 E studied on them all.  I hope her horse judging skills are being put to good use.
This is the creamello stallion that is the sire of all of them.
 I'm still not certain E is going through with this project yet.  But if she does you all can pick after we do.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

First Calf

Calving season has started here at 4R Ranch.  Most other farmers around here start calving in January but J has decided to go against the "herd" and calve more in sync with nature.  The weather was perfect yesterday. 
 This first calf heifer was actually about a week early.
 She had a cute heifer calf.
She probably doesn't weigh over 50 pounds but that's ok.  It just means that the heifer calved successfully on her own and has a better chance of continuing on the farm and becoming a productive cow.
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