Buster · Family · On The Ranch · Wacey

First Branding of the Season

Saturday morning I loaded up the boys for the maiden voyage of the double stroller and we moseyed on down to the barn to brand our first set of calves! It was Wacey’s first year to get to “help” (in past years he’s been strapped to me in a carrier or in his stroller) and he had an absolute ball.  In between M&M breaks, he helped me take down numbers on his own notepad, and helped his daddy wrestle calves.

Buster spent the morning snoozing in my Solly wrap, which has occurred so often with Wace and now Buster that it’s a ranch joke that my kids could sleep through Armageddon. I don’t know if it’s the wrap, or genetics, or a combination of both, but the ability of both my boys to nap through the din of branding with cows and calves bawling, everyone talking and carrying on, horses snorting is absolutely uncanny. I love it, though. They get to snooze, I get to work, and we’re all happy!

Branding season is one of my favorite times. The first (and last, haha) ones are always kind of festive, and Saturday was no exception. We had the whole crew there, plus some neighbors, and a delicious brisket lunch in the barn. It was warm, but not hot, and not windy, so it was a lovely morning and a great start to the spring season.

I can already tell that ranch life with two boys is going to be so fun. Messy, sticky, hilarious fun. It’s also going to keep me on my toes–Wacey has no fear when it comes to calves and horses, so the minute he’s allowed to be horseback by himself we are in for some wild west adventures, let me tell you.

PS–doesn’t that little cowboy hat just kill you?! He’s starting to insist upon wearing it almost all the time, including with pajamas.

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Happy Monday! I’ve got a mountain of work (and laundry) to get done this week, which I’ll be doing in between wrangling babes, sweeping the floor that is now apparently applying for the position of Wacey’s Second Sandbox, and pumping. #momlife.

Speaking of #momlife, get thee to the nearest place wherest thou gets thine audiobooks (that was weird, remind me no more Olde English), and get Jim Gaffigan’s Dad Is Fat. SO GOOD.

On The Ranch · Wacey

Baby Calves

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Yesterday after we got back from the office, Wace and I took the stroller down to the barn to soak up all 65 degrees of the gorgeous afternoon and, of course, to go see daddy. We came home and stopped at the pivot behind the house to check out our baby calves! These mamas are a little protective, so I brought my bigger lens (and Gaucho) because they don’t always especially appreciate company, especially company in the form of an oddly-shaped lady and a tiny human.

There are about a hundred pairs (mamas + babies) out here right now, and other than a couple sick ones that Bert has been tending to, they’re all doing really well! I’m glad it’s been warm because although calves do just fine in the cold and snow, it’s nice to see them play in the sun.

One thing that cracks me up about baby calves is how silly they are. They run and play and jump and chase each other, and it’s hilarious, especially when they’re just learning how. During the day, everyone tends to spread out and play and lay in the sun, but as the evening comes on, the calves start to retreat to the tall grass. I also love the “it takes a village” mindset of the cows–often, you’ll see one or a few cows hanging out with a bunch of babies while their mamas graze or go to water. I hope they switch it up, or that the nursery cows like to mind all those crazy little bovines. Every now and then, you’ll see a calf that’s just had enough and needs to find mama now, and he’ll go trotting out into the pivot, bawling like he’s on fire, until his mama takes pity on him and comes to the rescue. The calves still get all their nutrition from milk, but some are starting to pretend graze, and it’s so funny to see them acting like big cows. They’re just like human toddlers– they can’t wait to be big. They’re also very dramatic, very hungry, and very much in love with their mamas, and like to throw fits.

We also spotted the geldings from way out–Bert hasn’t been riding as much, and the horses have been getting a break since their only job right now is to eat, which means we hardly see them. They’re going to be fat fat fat when it’s time to start spring work in the next month or two!

While I was taking pictures (I was using my 120mm lens which I kind of really suck with, so I was concentrating pretty hard), I heard all this giggling, and I look over and see this:

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I mean seriously. And Gaucho didn’t even care! What a silly situation; I about died laughing. If this is how the rest of my life is going to be with being a boy mama, oh my gosh bring it on because it’s so much fun! Although I so hope the boys refrain from sitting on Gaucho as they get older.

Wace has been telling me for the last ten minutes that a) the trash is gross and b) “Boxboxboxboxboxboxboxbox hathathathathathat” which means that there are coffee grounds in the trash can and it’s time for us to go get a hat on (he has to wear a hat outside) and go play in his sandbox.

May your Thursday be lovely, may your coffee be strong, may your Valentine’s treats still be in existence, and may you get a chance to be one of the free-grazing mamas at some point today!

Family · On The Ranch · Wacey

Weekend Update

I never thought of February as a busy month, but apparently it is. Here’s what we (okay, mostly me and Wace) were up to last week (because Bert was at the barn, doing Barn Things. Imagine).

The only way to describe last week’s weather was epic, which is partly to blame for my lack of posting. We’re talking sixties, y’all. In February. In Colorado. So we spend the grand majority of our time outside, going on walks, and I did a lot of sitting/working out on the porch while Wacey played. There is no better seat in the house to work on my computer than out on the porch in the morning sunshine with a happy toddler–so happy, in fact, that he can’t always wait to change his clothes to play, so we just slap a jacket on over his jammies. Priorities, right?

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Tuesday, of course, was Wacey’s birthday, so he spent the day at the barn with daddy, guzzling donuts, hollering excitedly about the balloons, and playing in his sandbox.

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Wednesday, Wace and I both had doctor’s appointments, but they were a few hours apart so we spent time in between getting lunch at Panera, going shopping for a couple of outfits for Little Brother including a coming-home outfit, playing at the park, waving for selfies, and treating ourselves after a long day with some chocolate for Wace (the ratio to ingested vs. smeared on face was pretty low, I think) and a Starbucks for me (God bless the Starbucks drive-through).

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The boys fed cows while I failed to take a single picture of any of the calves born last week (no more twins, though) and we visited the Turkey Farm (just kidding, that’s Headquarters).

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We also got some awesome mail, not to mention the beautiful gifts from friends and family for Wace, which were not photographed because Wacey knows what presents are now and who am I to ask the birthday boy to wait while I take a picture? I love getting mail, even if it’s just boring stuff I ordered!

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I didn’t end up getting to go on the tour of the packing plant that was supposed to happen Friday, but we’ll reschedule–things came up, not the least of which was some major water trouble down at the calving barn. Bert was uncertain about keeping Wacey while I was gone because the aforementioned water trouble required shutting all the water off, and hurrying to try and fix the problem with a backhoe and some pretty serious equipment, none of which is baby-friendly, and it was too late to make other arrangements. But, c’est la vie, and in calving the girls take precedence over everything, so we expect things to get a little glitchy sometimes.

And it’s totally okay, because we got to play outside in seventy degrees. 

And yesterday, I made it to 35 weeks! Things are getting so real, and I’m stuck between prepare all the things and hey, you got this, it’s just a baby. I do need to at least make a list of what to bring to the hospital, though!

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Happy Monday (or pre-Valentines, if that’s more your style). Hopefully I can get my act together a little better this week, even though we’re in for another week of gorgeous weather! I hope to go out and snag some pictures of the pairs so you can see how big our babes are getting–when they’re bitty, Bert can doctor by going out and grabbing them by a hind leg with a hand, but yesterday he had to come home and saddle because they’re officially too big and fast! Most of my plans revolve around administrative Ranch Things and tying up loose ends–I’m just going to be operating for the next several weeks as if I might go into labor, because I’m a control freak and I want to make sure everything is neat and tidy (both literally and figuratively) so I can relax and enjoy Bub when we get home, and so the guys aren’t like, getting tickets for expired license plates.

It’s a glamorous life, and someone’s got to live it.