Tag: winter

Be Thankful in All Things

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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.

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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.

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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).

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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

Categories: Idaho Cattlewomen, Lifestyle, Ranch Life

Don’t Let Winter Get You Down

It’s probably no surprise to you when I say, “I absolutely love working outside.” Every day brings something different from the last, and always leaves me thinking about how blessed I really am. Everybody jokes that their ranch is God’s Country, but let me be the first to say, I am constantly blown away at the beauty of this place I get to call home.

Unfortunately when you’re outside 8+ hours a day, seven days a week, those elements can start to take a toll on your body—especially if you’re a woman. For a man, sunburns and cracked hands are just part of the job; but for me, those are things I try to stay away from. Just to make things clear, I don’t spend an hour before work putting on my makeup and making sure my hair has the perfect pouf. Very rarely is my hair styled in something other than a braid, and chapstick is surely all you’ll find on these lips. But at the end of the day, I want it to be extremely apparent that I am a Jessie, not a Jesse.

Because I know that women are always looking for new beauty products, I’ve taken the liberty to share a few of my favorites that help keep me feeling like a lady, even when I am out working with the guys. You can find links to all of the products I talk about within this post, but if you have any questions be sure to leave a comment so I can get back to you! Also, please know that this is not a sponsored post. I use all of these products on a daily basis, do not get paid for it (unfortunately, because wouldn’t that be nice), and wouldn’t suggest them to others if I didn’t believe in their quality.

It's only November 17, and its already setting in to be a cold winter! Hopefully a few of my favorite products will help keep you looking fresh throughout these chilling months!

It’s only November 17, and its already setting in to be a cold winter! Hopefully a few of my favorite products will help keep you looking fresh throughout these chilling months!

Body:  I will be the first to tell you, if you only put one thing on your body, be sure that is sunscreen. I would rather tell me dad that I wrecked my car, than tell my dermatologist that I don’t regularly wear sunscreen. This is not a lie. And she (my dermatologist) is right. Regardless of what month it is, sunscreen is a must. Melanoma (skin cancer) has been on the rise for the last 30 years, and it won’t be going away any time soon. Sunscreen is your best defense against this killer; and let me be the first to tell you, tan skin is not worth it. There are tons of faux tanners out there that will give you the perfect sun-kissed glow in no time, without the harsh effects of too much sun. My favorite facial sunscreen is a mineral stick that I brush on over my makeup. As for the rest of my skin, I use anything with an SPF of 45 or higher and a decent smell. This Hawaiian Tropic stuff is my favorite!

As much as I love Idaho, its dry climate is not a friend to skin—especially anytime November-March. Combine the cold with a 10-20mph breeze, and your skin really has something to complain about. When it comes to a general lotion, I live by Cetaphil products. They have a really great moisturizing lotion that’s perfect for all-over use. However, when things start getting really cold and dry I always add some Bio Oil in with my lotion. It adds in a lot of moisture without being extra greasy. Coconut oil also works great, except it stays solid above 72 degrees, so you have to put a little more work into getting it in oil form. I generally buy these products at Costco because that’s where I’ve found them to be cheapest.

Face:  My facial ritual is extremely simple. Morning and night, I moisturize with Cetaphil’s Moisturizing Cream. On those days when the wind is really howling, I mix equal parts hydrocortisone cream and Neosporin, applying it to my nose and cheeks. This mixture really helps to keep redness and wind burn at bay. As for lips, I always try to keep them protected with an SPF lip balm. ChapStick brand is a great go-to, but I also really like Eos’ Sphere Lip Balm. The shape makes it super easy to apply, although it’s not made to be put in one’s hind pocket.

Hands: More often than not, my hands take the worst hit from Mother Nature. I love getting a manicure just as much as every other girl, but unfortunately they just aren’t built to outlast ranch work. Instead, I will be forever plagued with hang nails, cracked knuckles, and jammed-so-often-they’re-crooked thumbs. Luckily enough, I’ve found a product that works just a good at keeping my hands looking as ladylike, as possible. This Just a Minute Hand Scrub from Bath and Body Works is something I absolutely swear by. It always manages to get rid of whatever grime I have underneath my fingernails, removes cuticle like a champ, and leaves my hands feeling oh-so soft. Afterwards, I use a combination of Bio Oil and Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream (both linked above), to really lock in moisture.

Hair: In an effort to keep hat hair at bay, I’ve found a miracle product. Josie Maran Argan Hair Serum. Yes, it’s a mouthful—but never have I found something better at protecting my locks. One pump of this stuff, and I’m ready to take on the day! Now, when I say one pump I truly mean it—anymore than that and looking like you swam in a bacon fryer. I will be the first to warn you, at first glance this stuff is expensive. But it lasts forever and is absolutely worth it. I’m still working at a two-ounce bottle that I’ve had since last Christmas, which pencils out to $0.14/day.

So whether you work outside all day or are just looking for some new beauty products to pamper yourself this winter, I hope you check them out.

~ J

Jessie has returned to her roots on her family’s commercial Black Angus cattle ranch in southern Idaho after time away at college and working on behalf of the state’s cattle producers. She’s passionate about agriculture and the western way of life. When she isn’t doing ranch work or writing, Jessie enjoys baking, golfing and drinking coffee. As a newlywed, she’s also turning a little cabin on the ranch into a home.

Categories: Blogging, Idaho Cattlewomen, Lifestyle