Friday, February 26, 2010

What is your typical day like?

This weeks show us how you live topic is, What is your typical day like? Well this fits perfectly into my new idea that I will share what life is like on a ranch. At home my day would go something like this; Get up around six, stumble to the kitchen table and listen to the weather (my parents have 300 channels and yet the weather is on five hours a day). Finally wake up enough to eat some breakfast, then get dressed. Dress would include long johns, heavy jeans, t-shirt, long sleeved shirt, sweater and heavy socks. Before going outside I would add carhart coveralls (except, sadly, mine are little kids and green since I'm so short) carhart coat, a silk scarf (mine are usually pink to keep the guys from stealing them), cotton gloves (they're easy to layer and switch out if they get wet) warm boots and a hat. Being short I look like a fat kid or a black and green marshmallow when I exit the house. First on the agenda outside is starting the feeding pickups to let them warm up. Then I would take care of any corral chores, such as chopping ice and feeding the old horse his grain for the morning. Feeding is next. I would select either the 1996 Dodge with the hay feeder on it or the 198? GMC with the cake feeder on it. I prefer the Dodge, but since both have a heater and a working radio I'm fine with either. Let's say I get in the GMC today. That would mean I would drive under the cake storage bin, and weigh 600 pounds of cake into the feeder (It sets on a scales so we can determine how much we're feeding everything). Then I would cruise a couple miles down the road to the Hitchcock pasture and feed our calves. These calves are almost one year old right now and are fed hay and cake every day. I would use a siren that sounds similar to those heard in cities to call the calves and believe me, you want to be ready to feed when you turn on the siren because here they come! Following that I would drive home and re-fill my feeder with another 600 pounds of cake, then drive about 5 miles to the Over East pasture to feed the sheep. They are a little trickier to find sometimes. They come to the siren if they can hear it but sheep travel a lot, so it's difficult to determine where they are in a pasture that is about 2 miles by 2 miles in size.
After finding and feeding them I would probably call the person feeding hay in the Dodge on our CB radio. There is no cell service within 50 miles of the ranch so most people use CB radios to communicate. We would determine who was checking water where. I would probably be checking the calves water since they are on my way back home. Water is a BIG deal to ranchers. I will have a post on it sometime. Since it's so cold I would probably have to chop ice with an ax, then use a shovel or pitchfork to scoop the ice chunks out of the tank. The entire time I am feeding I have the radio blaring and my camera (the nice one) sitting within reach in case a photographic moment presents itself, which is often. I would also most likely have a couple dogs with me and would be entertained by them as well. Upon returning home I would feed anything else around the house that needed cake, such as the bulls or other horses. Then I would return to the house to warm up and probably eat lunch. After lunch I would plan the rest of my day. In the winter I spend a lot of time working on pictures or helping my dad and brother. During the winter months the men spend a lot of time in their shop, working on various equipment, doing maintenance and repairs on our vehicles or designing and building new items. I might help them with something or be given a task by them in the afternoon. There are also the house chores such as laundry, cleaning and cooking supper to be done. Never a dull moment for sure. In the evening I would take a shower and watch House Hunters :) We would sit down as a family to eat dinner. We also eat lunch together and most of the time breakfast too. Dinner is eaten somewhere between six and eight depending on what's going on. After dinner we watch TV and I might read a book and will probably be in bed by ten at the latest. I would be physically exhausted and mentally rejuvenated, it's a wonderful feeling you can't explain to someone.

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