Tag: cattle

Saturday Adventures on the Ranch

Around here during the week my husband is off spraying field crops or weeds in the back country and I am busy visiting with ranchers about their nutrition programs, so that leaves most of our cattle working days to the weekend. Since the weather was so nice last fall and grass was plentiful, we were able to leave our herd out on pasture longer, with hay and protein supplementation. All summer and fall my husband Cody, our good friend, Tate, and I, worked on getting our new feeders set up and our corral finished. When we brought the cows home the end of December we were all so very excited to try out our new feeding system. As most things on a ranch go, the corral was near finished by the cows arrival, but not quite. We have never built a corral before. There are lots of ideas out there so we used parts and pieces of other corral plans and between all three of us, came up with a nice, simple design.

Cow desk!! Underneath/ shaded storage as well! Its the small things, right?

Cow desk!! Underneath/ shaded storage as well! Its the small things, right?

A well set-up corral can make working cattle safer and easier for all humans and animals involved. I had a few small requests, one of which was a place to set down vaccine bottles, a notebook, etc.



It was a lot of hard work, but earlier this month Cody sent me a picture of the final product and I was oh so excited! The next picture he sent was what he calls my “cow desk.” It almost brought me to tears! What is happening? Crying over a darn corral? Being a girl is the funniest thing sometimes. I think my excitement just got the best of me. Of course I described this finished product as beautiful and gorgeous, much to Cody’s dismay.

Cattle leisurely headed up to the circular part of the corral.

Cattle leisurely headed up to the circular part of the corral.

We recently gave our cattle a routine vitamin/mineral booster and a worm/parasite preventative and the new corral system worked great. It was an odd feeling to work your own cattle in a corral on your place and have zero previous experience. It was like driving a brand new rig off the dealer’s lot.

Mama cows waiting patiently.

Mama cows waiting patiently.

At the end of the day we gathered a few adjustments to be made, but it was a glorious feeling to have successfully used our new facility and see all our ideas come to life. Also, because I know you are dying to know, my “cow desk” was everything I ever dreamed of!

Cow desk is Mesa approved!  Yes, that is Elsa in her hand. Who doesn't love Frozen?

Cow desk is Mesa approved! And yes, that is Elsa in her hand. Her doesn’t like Frozen?!

She just HAD to have the blue shirt on.....

She just HAD to have the blue shirt on…..
















It’s always a great day when you can work cows safely and efficiently! Is there something you just found that makes your job easier? What are your Saturday adventures? We love to hear from you!

Next time I’ll share about my adventures with the sewing machine!

~ Diana

Categories: Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch kids, Ranch Life

Be Thankful in All Things


My sister-in-law made this neat little banner for our Thanksgiving meal.

Wow, it’s hard to believe it’s Dec. 2, but there really is no denying the calendar. I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving celebrating with family and friends. I always enjoy this season. The sights, smells and sounds of the holidays bring a smile to my face. And while I offer thanks and praises every day; it’s still nice to have a day completely dedicated to showing gratitude for our many blessings.

I am thankful for a strong family. Not only did I grow up with a large, supportive family, but I gained many wonderful people into my life when I married. Through good times and bad, we are in it together and committed to making it all work. It’s like that with so many of Idaho’s ranching families. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and visiting with them over a cup a coffee. They love the land, their animals and their families. And whatever life throws at them, they just get back up and keep fighting for what they believe in.


Our little guy checking out the cows.

I am thankful for my husband and children. You never know how much you can love your spouse until you get all bundled up and go out to check heat on the cows in the middle of the night or help fix a fence in a blizzard because the cows got out (that was really early in our marriage). Our children provide us with moments of joy and laughter daily (and some times minutes of head shaking too). Truly though, I am thankful I get to be their mom because they continually inspire me to be better tomorrow than I am today. They are our future, our legacy.

I am thankful for my health. I know friends and family who are struggling now with various health setbacks, and I do not take for granted being physically fit and healthy. And beef is definitely part of my healthy lifestyle.

I am thankful to be part of a strong agriculture community. Being part of the food and fiber industry is not easy as so much is dependent on factors completely out of our control—like weather, markets and consumer demand. But I can’t think of an industry more noble or rewarding.


Hoping for lots of baby calves to hit the ground next year.

Speaking of what’s unpredictable. It snowed again here. Last week was quite mild, then boom, it’s winter again. Of all the weeks this month this was not the one my husband wanted snow. He’s been planning his schedule for breeding cows and this is the big week. He has done all the prep work, given the shots, synchronized them so they would come into heat at the same time, researched all the pedigrees, calculated the EPDs, purchased the bull semen, and spent many hours studying and planning. The weather is not on our side right now as it can affect the conception rate in cows. I’m hoping all his hard work will still pay off though. There is nothing so rewarding as seeing the new baby calves hit the ground (which will happen 9 months from now if all goes as planned).


But that is one thing with cattlemen and women. Even though the weather is not going as planned, we will still be thankful for the moisture. We will be thankful in all things—both big and small.

~ Maggie

Maggie and her husband raise their four children and registered cattle on his family’s southwest Idaho ranch. As a family, they enjoy sports, showing cattle, 4-H, church and other activities when not working on the ranch. She likes to experiment with recipes in the kitchen, shares her love of sweets through baking with her children, and has been known to start a DIY project every now and then. Sometimes she actually finishes one.

Categories: Idaho Cattlewomen, Lifestyle, Ranch Life

Change and Thankfulness

Every rancher we know has a plan—that outlined picture of what the future holds. Some people have it typed and saved on a hard drive, others pencil it out on paper-—or scribble it on a napkin—and yet others sketch their plans in their mind map. Whatever the case, we are all aware of what we’d like the future to look like. If we are really honest, we often have two plans—the practical plan and the “whoa, I’m dreaming big, baby!” plan. Usually we file the first and tuck away the second in our underwear drawer so no one will see our outlandish thoughts.

Recently, something happened in our own little world that defied both plans and made us stop and think: “What do we do with this?”

It isn’t on the plan—not even the wild plan. It feels like it’ll really make things better or spiral us toward the polar opposite.

Will it be like the time I lost my rope or saved a calf?

Gathering the girls

Gathering the girls


Often things come into our lives that we aren’t sure what to do with—and somehow our uncertainty seems to make us think we’ve failed. There should always be a plan, whether it is the normal one or the big one, right? Plans have always helped us, but they just can’t always be concrete. Life is bound to change; surprises happen. Sometimes it isn’t exactly a cut and dry answer that’s needed (Unless it can be fixed with duct tape or baling twine), as much as it is a process.

One year we were surprised with twins—a red one and a black one!

One year we were surprised with twins—a red one and a black one!

Truly ranching is a process and one that I’m thankful for regularly. As we celebrated Thanksgiving this week, thankfulness is on my mind. I love how producers help each other and share information. I treasure how friendships can be formed easily. I’m thankful for fresh air and animals. I’m grateful that even though plans change or get flipped upside down, we still have ranching. I’m thankful for everyday ideas and “Whoa, baby” big plans—and for the people in my life who appreciate both. As producers, we have a lot to be thankful for—both in industry standards and in each other. Here’s to dreaming big and flexible plans!

I am thankful for cows!

I am thankful for cows!

~ Marci

Marci is a city girl gone country. She married her cowboy and never looked back. While life may be different than what she first imagined, it’s also better than she expected as well. She and her husband are raising their three kids on the ranch, and she has grown used to all the boots by the door.

Categories: Blogging, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch Life

Sunrise Reminder


I couldn’t get anything done this morning. . .the kid’s breakfast was put on hold, lunch ingredients stayed on the counter, coffee cooled. This sunrise made me stop in my tracks as I silently watched the sky explode in colors and dimensions. The cows started their morning movements of grazing, finding calves, moving from their bed ground. The fall ground fog hinted at much needed moisture seeping into the ground. It was spectacular.



So, why is this “blog worthy”?

Because it reminded me that much of this life remains out of my control. I worried fitfully in my sleep of cows coming in from the desert thinner than expected as a result of a dry summer. I felt my mind not turning off, but thinking through the night of things that needed “fixed”. I find that much of the time in this livestock business, one continually finds things to be “fixed”; some are individual, some are regional, some are international, some are intentional, some are perceptional.

And then, I witness something tangible that says, “Things are in control; no need to worry.”


~ Julie

Julie and her family own a cow-calf, yearling operation and custom feedlot in southwest Idaho. She and her husband were raised on livestock ranches and their industry roots run deep. Their children have been very active and involved in the ranch and feedlot, and are developing their own herds of quality cattle.

Categories: Blogging, Lifestyle, Ranch Life

Fall Colors, Cowboy Style

As the leaves begin to turn their beautiful orange and yellow colors, you can begin to feel the chill in the early morning air. Fall approaches us this year with more items added to our “to do list.” Along with our horse and cattle operation and saddle business, my husband Matt, is a rep for Western Video Market. As per the customer’s request, he will travel to the location of where the cattle are, and video calves, yearlings or breeding stock. You can watch the sale on satellite TV or the Internet. When the seller and buyer agree on price and delivery date, the rep will go to location of cattle and help sort and load them. It is the reps responsibility to make sure the trucks are at the location to load, the cattle are the right weight, and all paper work is taken care of.

cattlewoman on horseback

The boys and I have had the opportunity to go with Matt and help. On one of our most recent video sales, we went to a beautiful ranch in Wyoming. It required us to stay the night so we decided to stay at a hotel so the boys could swim. The owner of the cattle asked us to help him gather the critters in a large field above his house. So we loaded our horses, kids and swim suits. It was the later part of the morning as we pulled into the corral, saddled our horses, and put on the extra coat we didn’t think we would need.

Fall gathering on a good horse.

We head out across the field aiming for the pine trees and mountains that lie ahead of us. The cattle are waiting in the mist, slowly milling around. The field turned out to be a rather large one. It took a large part of the day, the sun warming us up enough to take a few layers off. It was a great gather, the calves running and bucking, and cows bawling for their own, and we even got to rope a few stragglers that decided to turn back on us. No complaining here. It was a beautiful day, spent riding with my family, getting our young horses rode, and being reminded how blessed we truly are. We left them in a corral overnight so they would be easy to get to in the early morning to sort and ship. We had a nice evening, and the boys swam until their hearts were content.

The next morning came fast, a rather chilly one in fact! Matt and I sorted the calves from cows, making sure our counts each matched. The truckers were there, waiting patiently for their turn to load. The brand inspector looked the cows and calves over. Matt takes care of the paper work transactions, and we load the trucks. Away they go…

That job is complete, and now we go onto the next one…gathering our own cows. Happy Fall Y’all!

~ Jayme

Jayme lives in Shelley, Idaho, with her husband Matt, and their three sons. She was daddy’s little cowgirl being raised horseback on the family cattle ranch. Matt and Jayme have known each other since their early junior rodeo days. They are both 4th generation ranchers and have a cow-calf and horse operation. Jayme drives school bus, and helps Matt on the ranch in addition to chauffeuring kids. Matt is also a custom saddle maker.

Jayme also blogs at www.cavvysavvy.com where this post first appeared.

Categories: Blogging, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch kids, Ranch Life