Sunday, January 29, 2012

Miss Weenie

I have been a little slow to update you on my new dog. A few months ago, shortly after Pearl died, I found an ad for a six-month old female dachshund puppy for sale. The reason? She was killing chickens, and her owner's husband was very serious about his chickens. Now, to many this may be a sign of trouble, and a good reason to stay away. I immediately saw it as a sign of another potentially great dachshund (it's hard to explain if you haven't owned one).
I met the very nice owner of "Stretch," and ended up leaving with her. Since that day she has gone through a variety of trial names, and has settled into being Miss Weenie, officially. Her name is the female version of Mr. Weenie, from Open Season.
Weenie, as I usually call her, is certainly a dachshund. She loves life, kills mice with more efficiency than a cat, cuddles, sniffs and explores everything, and is a total individual. She enjoys going along feeding, is not about to take on any creature larger than herself, and can be seen ripping around the yard with a bone or eating her latest mouse kill (gross I know) at least once a day.
She has also developed her dachshund quirks. These include hating my father, and brother, and a long standing battle involving a few attempts at growling and barking, two things that aren't tolerated by the men of the house. She also has struggled, extensively, with the house training business. Perhaps it's due to the winter weather, perhaps her previous owners weren't overly strict in that area, perhaps she's just stubborn. After several months of dealing with this (she has been the hardest dog to house train I've ever owned) we are gaining serious ground. But, this morning there was yet another mess just after she had been outside. I grabbed her by her scruff, gave her the usual stern talking too, nose rubbing, etc... and packed her to the door and tossed her outside.
The result was a very uncommon howl of pain. Tonight she is hobbling around on three legs, packing one very swollen front leg, and has a vet appointment first thing in the morning.
I feel terrible.
But also hope that maybe this will at the very least permeate her thick German skull in the area of where her restroom is.
 Thankfully we are blessed with some good vets in our area. Case in point - I called and got him, at his office, on a Sunday, and set up the appointment for first thing in the morning. He gave me the pre-appointment directions so he can dive right into whatever he needs to do instead of me having to wait in town half the morning for that stuff. Emmie (you can read about her and my previous dachshund here), has been through a snake bite to the face, a grub in her cheek, a broken foot (not because of me), and a multitude of other minor and serious money costing vet visits to this same man. I like him, Emmie doesn't.
Emmie would also like to point out that being a pint size ranch dog is not for the faint of heart. You have to be quick, smart, entertaining in some way and somewhat obedient because men, and some women, are going to judge and discriminate against you based on your size, name, breed, and any number of other things. On top of that the livestock just don't take you seriously either. Wish Weenie luck on her first health related bump in her new world.

Friday, January 27, 2012

An Award!

The 4R Ranch blog made my day when they listed me as one of their Liebster Blogs (which means something along the lines of dearest or beloved in German). Thank you so much!

Here are the directions that come along with the award:

1. Copy and paste the award on your blog
2. Link back to the blogger who gave you the award
3. Pick your five favorite blogs with less than 200 followers, and leave a comment on their blog to let them know they have received the award.
4. Hope that the five blogs chosen will keep spreading the love and pass it on to five more blogs

So, in no particular order:

dun dun dun music here.....

Life Be Delicious
Anna is expecting her first baby any moment now, and I can't wait to see pictures of him! I love her posts on her life, turquoise and food. This lady also has some great taste in decor and fashin in my opinion, and she is kind enough to share some of her finds on her blog. I also love that she "gets on her soapbox" from time to time and isn't afraid to tell it like it is.

Happily Ever After
I went to middle and high school with Laura, the author of this blog, but that's not the only reason I love her posts. She is a gifted writer, and her stories of motherhood and life in general are hilarious, inspiring and memorable. She is a super mom and talented individual who will touch you with her posts about life, parenthood and projects she takes on!

From My Front Porch
Jent's blog reminds me of my family growing up, and that alone makes it a favorite to read. She lives in the country, covers a huge variety of topics, and is brutally honest and funny! She also uses pictures in most of her posts of the people/topics she's covering, and I do like pictures...

Speaking of pictures, this girl has a lot of them on her blog! She often does a Friday Favorites post, where she puts up a variety photos she liked from that week. She is kind enough to use mine from time to time, and I also love the other amazing pictures she finds. You will see everything from cows to landscapes to high fashion on a given Friday, and she fills in the other days with her personal photography.Very cool!

Dicky Bird's Nest
This gal blogs on a variety of topics, and right now I am particularly hooked on her week of meals based on one key ingredient everyone is likely to have a lot of leftovers when they prepare (ham...), and her posts on the right tool for the job. Several of the people I follow bring their faith into their blogs, and Dicky does this in a unique and memorable way with her right tool for the job posts right now. She also signs off each post with, "Blessing from Wisconsin."  : )

And there you have it, hope you enjoy reading them as much as I do! A couple of these didn't list their actual number of followers, so I apologize if any of you that I listed have 500 followers I didn't know about : )
I could keep going, because there are certainly more than 5 of these amazing blogs with under 200 followers that I enjoy stopping by and reading, and many more with over 200 followers.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

From Start to Finish

Perhaps you've heard that it takes a long time for ranchers to raise the product we sell, which in our case is beef. This post covers the timeline from start to finish for you. I realize some of the photos aren't my best - I wasn't planning this post for the last two years, and my photography has improved since 2009. My hope is to follow this post with one of photos of our calves over this same time period, so you can see how they change and grow.

 Today I am showing you the timeline for the steers we sold in September, 2011. We started planning for them in June of 2009, when we turned the bulls in with our cows. This was the first time we managed specifically for the following year's calf crop.

In late 2009, we poured all our cows for parasites, and preg checked them. All pregnant cows were kept, and given a shot to protect their pregnancy. We fed them every other day all winter to ensure they had enough energy to produce a healthy calf and stay healthy themselves.

Nine months after we turned the bulls in, around late March and April of 2010, the calves were born. We were still feeding at this time because the grass hadn't turned green yet, and the cows were using more energy to produce milk for their calves.
When born the calves weighed between 70 and 80 pounds.

In May, 2010, we branded all our calves, castrated the bull calves, gave everyone an ear tag, and a shot to protect them against common diseases in our area. Then we turned them back out with their mothers on grass for the summer to grow.

Around October 1, 2010, we gathered all our cows and calves back up, and weaned the calves from their mothers. At this time we kept them in the corral for a few days and monitored them closely for sickness. Then we turned them back out on grass, and fed them cake and hay for the winter. Our calves weighed between 500 and 525 pounds when we weaned them.
Lots of ranchers where I'm from market their calves at weaning, or in the months following. Theirs may weigh more than ours at that time because calves are sold by the pound, and ranchers work hard to make as much money as possible, as all good business people do.

Winter, 2010. Here is a photo from feeding over the course of the winter. We fed them every other day, and checked their water every day.

We also weighed every calf when we weaned, and again in January, 2011 to determine how well each calf was gaining. During the second weighing, we sorted the heifers from the steers and turned them back out in separate pastures.
In early 2011 we also bangs vaccinated all our heifers, which is required by law for all replacement heifers (those we kept for breeding)
In March of 2011 the calves were one year old, and weighed between 600 and 700 pounds. Around this time (there's no set date) they went from being "calves," to "yearlings."

In May, 2011, we poured our steers for parasites, counted them and hauled them to their summer pasture.

In June, 2011, the heifers were turned out with a bull for the first time.

Meanwhile, the steers were happily grazing and gaining on grass for the summer.

Then, on September 17 we sold our steers after managing and working with them for 26 months. They weighed just under 1,000 pounds, and went to a feedlot to be fed a high energy diet for a few months prior to entering the food chain.
We received our one and only paycheck for the steers on that day too, after carrying the expense of growing them for those 26 months. During the time we owned them, we saw them almost every day, and never went more than a week without checking on them for their entire life.
Their sisters will take another two years to start earning income, when we sell their first calves. That's four years of time and money invested prior to seeing any return. Now, I don't want to you think I'm complaining, because I love and enjoy what we do. I'm just explaining.
Ranchers all love what they do for the most part. People who are just in a profession for the money don't typically choose this one. It takes a certain mindset and love for your work to put an animal's well being before a regular paycheck. This is also why you'll often hear ranchers call our profession a lifestyle - because it transcends the definition of a job regularly.

So, to recap quickly. We started in June of 2009, when we turned the bull in with the cows.

Nine months later the calves were born.

And a year and half after that, we sold the steers.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Let Them Eat Cake

I've been busy feeding:

and chopping ice:

for our livestock in recent weeks. Also have several writing/photography irons in the fire, as usual.
Hope everyone else is staying busy at tasks they love!

It's a couple days after I first posted this, but I am linking it up to Farm Photo Friday!

P.S. If the title didn't make sense to you. The crumbs on the top cows nose are cake crumbs. Cake is a protein/energy supplement we feed our livestock in the winter months to keep them healthy and at an appropriate weight level.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Factoring Farming

I had never heard of factoring farming until I saw it toted by an extreme anti-agriculture group a few years ago. I wasn't buying it as being anything a person would believe, and I was reminded of this initial response again today.

Here are our yearling and two-year-old's on the feedground today. Certainly not in a closed in, dirty, confined space.

And that's them again, over on the left. The little black circle. You can see why I had neither heard of this concept of all animals being housed in cramped, dirty, overpopulated environments, or bought into it. This is how livestock are "housed" where I live, and what you see is just the pasture they are living in for the winter. This isn't their year-round home, but rather one part of the total acres they live, roam and eat on over the course of a year.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Livestock Auctioneering Contest

Have you ever been to a livestock auctioneering contest? Ever been to a livestock salebarn?Livestock markets are where cattle are sold in a live setting, with an auctioneer calling the price, and buyers bidding until the cattle are sold for the highest possible price (assuming the auctioneer doesn't miss a bid). Buyers can bid live in the salebarn, or from the phone or Internet in some instances. 
The contest I attended was an LMA (Livestock Marketing Association) World Livestock Auctioneer Championship Quarterfinal Contest.  
There were 20 men competing, and the top 8 moved on to the semi-final round of competition, which will be held this summer. This was one of four quarterfinal rounds held across the country, and the top 8 from each of those moves to the semi-final round. The Canadian Champion is also allowed to compete, starting in the semi-final round.
Contestants are judged on clarity of chant, ability to catch bids, whether judges would hire the guy, and if they believe he would be a good representative of the livestock industry. The stakes are high in this contest, and if you win the world it is like winning the world series. The world champion wins $5,000, a custom belt buckle, diamond ring, use of a new pickup for their year of reign, and numerous other prizes. Perhaps more notable is the impact it has on their career. If you're named a world champion auctioneer, it will give you opportunities never seen otherwise, and you will meet more people than you can count within the livestock industry. You can also only win once. So, once you're named the World Champion Auctioneer of 2009, 2010, etc..., you will always be the World Champion for that year.
It's a big deal to these men, and you hear the best of the best in the profession at these contests.

 This contest was in Colorado. This is an actual salebarn, which hosted the event. The contest was held on a normal sale day, and the guys sold actual cattle to actual buyers. The barn worked extra hard to have a good string of feeders for the guys to sell. What I mean by that is there were over 4,000 weaned calves weighing between 400 and 800 pounds that were sold during the contest.
The contestants go one at a time, and sell eight lots of cattle apiece. One lot is one group, and can be anywhere from a single animal to over 100. Cattle are sorted by owner (no mixing cattle of different owners), sex (steers and heifers), weight, and quality. Each guy sold eight lots because that way the judges get a feel for how he sounds, how clear his voice is, and various other things.
The judges are mixed among the crowd you see, as are the buyers. Usually there aren't this many people at a normal sale, but the contest drew family, friends and observers that normally wouldn't attend. This adds to the competition as the auctioneers have to spot the buyers, and get their bids, without much help.

Before anything happened, a prayer was said, the Canadian National anthem was played out of respect for the Canadian competitor, and the American National Anthem was sung by a local high schooler.
Each contestant would enter the block, which is the box area with the people in it on the far side of the photo. The auctioneer always sells from the block, and there are also a couple clerks, who make sure the cattle are weighed and counted correctly, and penned correctly after being sold based on how whoever buys them wants them penned. Buyers are identified by numbers. So one buyer might be number 105, then he will add additional numbers to sort how his cattle are penned after he buys them. So, he will likely have 105-4, 105-6, 105-7 pens to sort his purchases. I clerked at a salebarn for a year, and it can be a stressful job at times. The barn owner or manager is also usually on the block to set prices, answer the phone, make decision about cattle, etc... These people are all on the block so they can readily see the cattle, and so the auctioneer and owner can see all the buyers, who sit in the stands.
The cattle are sold in what is called the ring. The ring is the pen you see, and it's actually all on a set of scales. Most cattle of this size and age are sold by the pound, so everything is weighed. You can see the information on weight, headcount and price on the computer screen above the ring and block. One of the clerks is who enters this information for every lot.
There is also an entire crew working outside to sort cattle and move them to the ring to be sold, then moving them to the various buyers pens after they're sold. These people also unload and load out cattle all day as they arrive and leave throughout the course of the sale. The running of a salebarn is a complex, intricate thing that requires a lot of precise work by a lot of people for however long the sale lasts.
Anyway, each contestant entered the block, sat down, and gave a brief introduction. Then he would jump right into selling. The barn manager would set the price, and the guy would sell them.

 Meanwhile, the guys in the ring, who are called ringmen, would turn the cattle a couple times so the buyers could inspect them and determine if they wanted to buy them, and at what price.

 For each new owner who was selling, the auctioneer would provide any information of note on the cattle to the crowd. This information might include how long they have been weaned, the diet they've been fed, what shot's they've had, and any other health or nutritional information that may help them sell. Here is my boyfriend reading about this group of steers. Each owner typically has multiple lots, so it's a toss up as to whether a contestant will have to read about one, or several, owner's livestock.

 Then off they go again, chanting away, gesturing for bids, and talking with the crowd.

Here's what it looks like from the auctioneer's viewpoint.

 Roughly two-thirds of the way through selling a lot of cattle, they are let out of the ring, and the next bunch is let in. This keeps things flowing, and prevents a loss of time between each lot. With over 4,000 head to sell, you don't want to waste time between lots. This perfect timing doesn't happen with every lot, but in general a good salebarn can really move through the cattle.
After each guy was done, he would thank the crowd, and the next guy would come up. If it wasn't a contest, the barn's auctioneer would just continue on all day, until every last head was sold.
As I said, there were a lot of great guys at the contest, and I heard a lot of different styles descriptive phrases and comments, and methods of getting bids from the buyers. Of the guys at this contest, around 15 have qualified for the semi-finals, and just under half have placed in the top 10 in the world before. It was pretty stacked, and interesting to watch.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Cows of Note, Number 2

I am back with some more Cows of Note this winter. In case you weren't reading my blog last winter, and don't have any idea what I'm talking about, here is a link to the first Cows of Note post I did.
Well, the link isn't working for me, so in case it isn't working for you either - The reason I do these is because I read in PETA that all rancher's animals are anonymous and that we don't care about them at all. This is simply untrue, very untrue, and these posts show examples of knowing our animals individually. We know them because we care about them, enjoy caring for them as a profession, and are around them with so much frequency that we know most of them at glance, and can recite a slew of general informatin about her and her offspring, any health related issues she's had, etc....
Specific cows stand out more than others for the various reasons I listed above, both good and bad. Sometimes it's how they look, or act, or the calves they raise. Other times it's a specific event she was involved in. Whatever the reason, these specific cows become Cows of Note, and I share some of them with you here.
The first Cow of Note for this year is number 9/2 (read 9 over 2). The 9 represents the year she was born, and the 2 is her number.
Number 2, as we call her, is everyones favorite cow of her generation. She is a beauty, a sweetheart, and she had a heifer calf her first time around. She's an eye-catching cow, and we've all noticed her since she was a baby calf around here.

She epitomizes what we want in a cow as far as how she's built and how she acts. She's moderate in size, pleasant to be around without constantly being in the way, and a good mother.

 As everyones favorite, she has also been given a little special attention, which she enjoys. Cows that will eat cake right out of your hand are called cake munchers, and Number 2 is one of our cake munchers.

And here she is with her first calf last spring, which will likely also be a Cow of Note when she grows up.
For more of our Cows of Note, you can go here or here.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Winter Water

Kerstin asked another question a few weeks ago:
Here's another consumer question: How does the water 'system' (the one with the tire) work? Is there a trick to keep it ice in the winter and alga/bacteria free in the summer? How do you fill it? Thank you! K.
Thank you for the question Kerstin! I didn't have the pictures I needed when you asked, but I got them all snapped, and here we go.
Our water system is all based on about 30 miles of underground, PVC pipeline, that transports water from multiple water wells to more than 20 water tanks, most of which are recycled tractor tires, like the one below. We also use a couple windmills to pump water, and have a solar well on our place that we pump water with also. The system is kind of like a town's water system, where water is piped to various residents (water tanks) from a large well (several wells in our case).
We put in all the pipeline and tanks ourselves, do the maintenance on them, and specifically designed our water system so that every pasture has water that comes from at least two sources. That way if one well/water tank/ pipeline/etc.. breaks, our livestock will still have water from a different source.

Each tank has a center cement ring, seen here. Some of them are covered, and some are uncovered. All the "guts" of the tank are located in this ring. Having a ring around the guts keeps the cows from breaking everything when they crawl into the tank (yes, they do this), and reduces the risk of the guts freezing even more.

Here are the guts. Our water tanks work exactly like the tank on your toilet. The water is piped up into the tank from the pipeline, windmill, or solar well, and the big black ball is a float that controls a valve on the water pipe. The float floats on the water, and when the tank is full it turns the water pipe valve off. As cows drink, the water level drops. This is like when you flush the toilet. The float drops with the water level, and opens the valve it controls more and more as it drops, which refills the tank. There are holes in the bottom of the cement ring that feeds the water into the entire tank.
We set each float to shut the valve off at a certain level, and that's what keeps the tank from spilling over the sides. This is done in a very high tech fashion: we bend the metal stem the float attaches to the valve with until it stops at the right spot : )
That white PVC pipe is what we call an overflow. This is a key part in reducing the amount of ice, and freezing, that occurs on a tank. The little part that is sticking out to the left is a nipple, with a hole in the end. That allows water to constantly flow out of the tank in a small volume, which also keeps water flowing in very slowly.
This is based on the science that atoms in motion are warmer than atoms not in motion. The continual movement of water within the tank created by the continuous flow in, and out, keeps it from freezing, or freezing as bad, as it would without any flowing motion.
The overflow also doubles as a drain for the tank. You can pull out the part you see above. Then the water can flow out a pipe the same size as the visible overflow pipe.
When we drain a tank, we use a specially designed key to turn off a valve that controls water flow to the tank. The valve you turn on or off is called a stop and waste valve. It stops water from flowing to the tank, and "wastes" any water left in the pipe by allowing it to seep back into the ground, thus preventing the pipe from freezing. The key we use is several feet in length, because pipelines are several feet (5 feet for us) below ground. You drop the key down a pipe that "T's" onto the pipeline, work it onto the valve, and turn it to turn the valve on or off.

Where does this water that's flowing out go? Downhill. Here is one overflow example. The water flows out, away from the tank. Sometimes it creates ice, which can be bad in the winter for cattle, but we design each tank in a way that cattle can get to it with ease, and without crossing the ice.

Here it is a little closer. The board is sitting there so we can see the overflow, and don't accidentally drive over it. The pipe "cage" on this tank is to keep livestock from crawling into the tank.

Here is a different tank's overflow. It goes down a little draw. The amount of water coming out of the pipe is about what we want to flow out of the overflow. This one doesn't ice up near the tank, and basically irrigates this little draw and provides additional water to a number of small and medium wildlife species that can't reach the tank, in addition to reducing how much ice we have to chop every day. Win win!

Here is a tank where the overflow wasn't working. We turned it on a while before we turned some cows into the pasture it's in, then didn't check it until the cows were turned in. The ice was 8-10 inches thick, and the cement ring was frozen solid. In these cases we get a bar, and pound all the ice out of the ring, then fix whatever we broke (and by "we," I mean my brother in this instance), then get it up and running again.

In contrast, here is how thick the ice is on a tank with a working overflow, in similar temperatures. Having cattle drinking out of a tank also reduces freezing, because the more water they drink, the more the tank has to refill, and the more movement of water that occurs.
Using tires for tanks also helps with ice because they're black, and absorb more heat than light colored tanks would.
As you've probably noticed, there is still ice to chop. In addition to the ideas we've implemented to reduce ice, we also check our livestock's water every day, and always have an ax and a shovel with us so we can chop ice and make sure they have water to drink. Where I'm from is considered very mild winter country, and in other parts of the state and country, ranchers have to chop a lot of ice every day, no matter what they do, because the weather is so cold.
As for algae/bacteria, yes we do have both, algae especially. Not as much in our black tire tanks, but the one I showed that wasn't a tire gets a lot of algae in it. We think this also has something to do with the colors of the tanks , and amount of sunlight the algae gets. My mom puts about a gallon of vinegar in it every so often to kill the algae.
We also empty most of our tanks when cattle aren't using them, and that controls algae and bacteria too.We use our water system to control the areas of a pasture that our cattle graze in, and turn tanks on and off to maximize the use of our grass, without overgrazing any specific area.
Thanks for asking, and I hope that helps answer your question!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Top 2011 Posts

I'm maintaining at a week behind schedule on the blog so far this year. Here are the top posts by page views of 2011 for everyone to look back on again. If you're new to Double H Photography this year, welcome! These posts will give you a good idea of how things roll on here for the most part.

Based on the overwhelming presence of posts that explain what we do on our ranch, with photos to help tell the stories, I think I'll continue doing that as much as possible this year : )
Since I started my blog in  May of 2009, it has received the most views from people within the USA, with Canada and Germany coming in second and third, respectively. All tallied, 18,282 page views have occurred on Double H since it's beginning, with a huge increase in traffic in 2011.
Thank you to everyone for stopping by once, every day, or somewhere in between!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


In moving home, I transitioned from having my own 980 square foot, 3 bedroom, 1 bath house with a garage, plus working in an office where all my work related "stuff" was comfortably housed, to my childhood bedroom, which is a fraction of the space.
It's been tight, cramped, flat out messy at times - okay, a lot of the time, and it drives me nuts.
Add to that my helpful mom and sister fold my clothes part of the time, then stack them on my desk, along with my mail, usually some of their mail, and about anything else of mine, and theirs on some days, that has traveled beyond my personal domain, and the situation is compounded, fast.
Did I mention that the "desk" I'm referring to is a plastic, fold-up table. One of the smaller ones that is a rectangle in shape. I didn't want to purchase a desk when I moved home, because I didn't know if it was a permanent or temporary situation, and I already owned a lot of furniture that has been moved about once a year for the last six years. I wasn't really wanting to add to the mess, so to speak.
I do have a "real" desk too, which is also in my room. This desk was built by my great-great grandfather, or uncle...I think. It was built by someone in my family several generations ago, I know that. It is very cool, solid wood, small, with very little storage. Not a huge help.
I've been in dire search of a solution, some improvement, just about anything. I started looking for a desk to purchase, since this whole freelancing thing is working out better than I ever imagined, and is definitely not "temporary."
Then, my wonderful boyfriend built me this desk for Christmas:

I picked out a stain, and we stained it together. Then I freaked out because it was BLACK with blonde highlights, and I was convinced I had ruined this beautiful piece of furniture. Now it has settled into a medium brown color that is much better. Big sigh of relief. I also asked that he trim down the antlers, as I will undoubtedly skewer myself on them if they're that long. He does good work!
This will definitely be a better, and much more beautiful, workspace for me than a plastic table. He has also told me he will build another piece of office furniture of my choosing to go along with this, so I have a set. I'm haggling for two pieces : )
Then, this week I bought bed risers. One half of my problem is I need file folder/paper storage, and that has previously been under my old desk. I looked like a hoarder.
With the bed risers my bed is waaay up there, but, there is room underneath it for the file folder storage boxes I use. Yesterday I moved them all from under the desk/on the floor in the open, to under the bed. I even had room for a lot of my photography stuff that isn't used every day, and various other things that have been adding to the messiness. I kept the files I use most and put them in a smaller organizer and left them under the desk, along with my huge photo printer.
So much better already, and I don't even have the desk at my house yet. That's part of what I've been dedicating my time to this week.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Winter in Wyoming

Here are some cattle pictures from the last few weeks, taken in Eastern Wyoming and the Bighorn Basin. Hope your week is going great!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year

Where have I been? Well I got snowed in at my boyfriends, who doesn't have Internet. Then we went to the very disapointing Denver Broncos game for his birthday and New Years (my surprise gift to him). I had a post scheduled for about four days ago, but apparently my limited technology abilities prohibited that from happening, somehow.
Anyway, Happy New Year!
The above photo is some of my photography and writing from the last year. A big THANK YOU to everyone for all the support, business, compliments and suggestions. 2011 was a great year for me, and all of you had a big part of making it that way. I really appreciate it!
Very excited to dive into 2012 full tilt, and make it an even better year!