Thursday, January 20, 2011

RoaD TrIp

So, I took a road trip (1300 miles round trip).  I was able to stop in Lima and spend some time with Dad, be visited by Tracy and 2 kids, and a overly friendly mouse.  I then went on to Utah where I headed out to the mall with Cali (I know priorities should be shopping) yet, the most I bought were cinnamon rolls and a chocolate milk.  Instead we walked for hours and let the Cinabon Cinnamon roll (it needs to advertise as a labor inducer) do its work of putting her into labor.  That night as Cali was checking into the hospital, Boston, Grandma Cheryl, and I went and visited Steph and Great Grandma Nadine. 

The next morning we welcomed baby Tristin Cash into the world, and as he was crying, watched Boston go crazy at hearing his sad brother.  I was able to spend time with Char and family, as they were nice enough to put me up for a few nights.  Hang out with Mason a little, and just enjoy getting to be an aunt, sister, daughter, granddaughter, cousin, and niece.  Tracy and I even slipped over to one of the best hair stylists ever and got the treatment we were in need of.  And there was this great dinner at Red Lobster too.  Then, it was back to being mom and wife.  I missed my family and was happy to be home to them.  Mike is such a great dad and takes good care of our kids.
Tristin Cash getting ready to go home!

Brotherly Love
It was great to see everyone and have that time.  I miss family being this far away, so the long drive was worth it. 

Saturday, January 8, 2011

That'S NoT thE Way DaDdY DoEs It!

This year I have decided to have a post here and there about our "ranch life".  Mainly, for my memory that seems to be failing.  Just little tid-bits that happen here and there as a snap-shot reminder of our life.  The first is titled "That's Not the Way Daddy Does It."

The other day after a vigorous work out and taking the kids to school, I came back to an empty house.  With no school work for myself, and no house work to do, I felt kind of lost.  Which you should never express in this house, because when you do the "light bulb" effect happens in Mike's mind and instantly he has something to occupy your time.  "Why don't you come and do chores over at the barn and spend some "quality" time with Reed and I?"  Of course soap operas and hidden chocolate were an option, but with the sweat and tears I have put into getting back into better shape, I chose the outdoors option.  Nothing like cow crap and tractor exhaust to deter your cravings of sweet, succulent chocolate.

It didn't take long for me to end up in the drivers seat of the big green tractor, being coached by my ever loving husband, on the art of picking up round bales and ever so carefully (without tearing up the feeder) setting them inside.  I personally love the hand motions that go into these directions, he really believes I know what he means with the sign language that is all his own (or so I thought).  After guiding me through one success, he sends me on my way to retrieve another heavenly giant green alfalfa roll.  His faith in the fact I am a fast learner is quite ego boosting, so off I drive to scoop up another bale and bring it to the balling black mammas. 

As I near the bale that is next on the list to be devoured, it occurs to me that this bale is on its end, where the previous one was on its side. " Hmm, I'll be jiggered, I will have to go at this a little different," I thought to myself.  First I was sure I needed to tip it over on its side, an easy task at best.  As I pull up to this poor innocent unmolested hay, I begin to attack it in a way I am sure will give me the end result I need.  Of course after three unsuccessful tries, there was this tiny voice of reason that with a loud sigh said, "That is not the way daddy does it."  Well, you see, I had a passenger who had been doing a little hemming and hawing during my failed attempts.  So, pushing back frustration and biting my tongue, I replied, "Reed this is my first time, I have never done this before, how does daddy do it?"

Well, that being just the question he was obviously waiting for, he picked up his right hand and began to not only tell me how to go about tipping over this bale, but he used the exact same sign language his father uses.  So my first attempt I pulled up to the bale, lifted the loader head, tipped it to the right angle that satisfied the little side kick, lowered the head while opening the hooks, and closed in on the somewhat mutilated hay.  As he told me to lower and reverse and lower some more, I was so proud of how I was making it work.  Knowing that I had done just enough tipping, I opened the hooks and let it go.  Much to Reed's dismay.  As the bale popped back up onto its end he exclaimed in exasperation, "No, mom I told you to go lower like this (frantically lowering the said hand artfully to the floor) and not let go yet!"  I instantly saw that I had made a mistake and my four year old was there to let me know how once again my not listening and being a touch impatient wasn't working in my favor.  So, the second try came around and as he guided me through the signs, which by now I am starting to understand maybe about 50% of the time, I successfully tip the bale to his satisfaction and let go to see it gently thud on its side. 

I scooped it up at the angle that the first coach instructed me to use so no damage would be done when dropping it in the desired location, and headed to do just that.  When Mike signaled for me to grab one more to feed the starving horses, Reed had a look of disgust in his eyes that simply said he was not wanting to do this with me all over again.  But wouldn't you know it, I was able to get that bale on the first try.  Reed's response was patting me on the back and repeating over and over again, with a touch of shock in his voice, "Good job mom, you did good that time!"
The Side Kick

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Ranch born and raised, we love the lifestyle that ranching offers. We also enjoy the oppurtunity of passing on the tradition to our four children.