Monday, March 15, 2010

Our herd

I did get some calves bought Saturday at Muleshoe. I only bought 28 heifers. I was wanting at least 40, but that is how it goes sometimes. I brought them to the house today, and it is a yucky day. Cold drizzly, rainy. I have them coralled in the goat pen for now training them to a hot fence. I will try to turn them out on the wheat in the morning.If you would permit a short visual explanation why I seem to have gone cattle crazy this winter here is why. The first chart is what wheat prices have done the past few months, wheat has lost more than $1 a bushel or about 20%, and cattle have gone up roughly 15%. Coulda, shoulda, woulda made a killing if I had bought my own last fall when they were cheaper, but hey, if I was that good at guessing the market I would be a millionaire.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Mmmmm, the smell of money.

They are both green, both don't smell very good, both have value, you don't want it in your mouth. But you keep money it in your pocket. Sloppy wheat pasture manure, no. Today I hauled 3 loads of wheat pasture cattle and it was so messy and sloppy and stinky. I had it all over my coveralls, on my face and in my hair. When I got done it was so soupy and sloppy in the trailer I just pushed it all out with a broom. I wish I had a video of that to show you guys. Not to gain sympathy, but because I find it a little humorous. And for the great yuck factor.

I wasn't done getting dirty after all that. I decided since I was filthy, and my tractor hydraulic parts came in I would go ahead and fix that. That wasn't stinky, just greasy and oily. Working above my head so the oil tended to run down my arms into my armpits. I did get that done too. It was a busy day.

Gonna go to the cattle auction in Muleshoe tomorrow to take a goat to the sale, and maybe buy a bunch of cattle to put on some wheat and "graze it out". Cattle prices are zooming up, and wheat prices are going down. We'll see if it works out.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Random thoughts from a java junkie

I am addicted to coffee. Not caffeinated coffee, just coffee. I don't know if it is all the cold damp weather we have been having or what. Seems like I want a cup ALL the time. Usually make a pot of decaf in the morning, and a lot of the afternoons do it again if I am home. And I have been home a lot in the afternoons.

We are wet again. We had some light showers last night, so everything is kinda sticky and messy again. 99% of the snow is melted. Only a few little spots from the big drifts are left. When they are gone we will have had snow on the ground somewhere since before Christmas. Unusual for us no doubt.

Why are some habits so easy for children to break, and others are so hard? Couple weeks ago I was getting tired of wiping the milk off D's chin when he was drinking. I told him a couple times to drink more careful, and he did. And kept it up, and does a pretty good job of drinking carefully. The other day we switched M. to the other side of the table for our meals and she adapted after only a couple meals, meanwhile Amanda and myself keep setting the table with her plate on the wrong side. But when it comes to bad habits we wish they would break, like asking the same stupid questions and getting the same response from us (silence) for months they just can't stop.

Interesting story: We were in Vega, TX Sunday eating at Dairy Queen, and we ran into M and D's grandmother! The one M. remembers and mentions from time to time. This grandmother was coming to the visits with bio-mom last summer until rights were terminated. Thankfully the grandma used discretion and did not jump out and make contact with the kids. She got my attention and visited with me a moment and said she realized she couldn't be the kids "grandma" anymore but would like to have some pictures or something. She also said she was glad the kids got to stay with us. (huh?) We talked it over and decided it would be alright if the kids could say hi to her right then. Anyway it was a very strange situation in a way. We had talked about trying to make contact with her anyway to just keep her updated on the kids, so we got her email and will send her pictures and stuff. Amanda is going to set them up a private facebook account so their bio-mom can see pictures too. (we know she has an account)

D. acted very strange around this grandmother, like he was kinda mad at her. I don't know how he could hardly remember her, but he wouldn't hardly look at her for a while. Very different behavior for him.

I know everybody is tired of hearing about it............
I am thinking my bargain Steiger tractor may be like my old Ford pickup. Fix Or Repair Daily will be it's motto. I have been having fits trying to fix a problem with the hydraulic system. It is getting air in the system and I am not sure where. I have changed some hose couplers, changed the oil and filter, and now I am working on the hydraulic pump itself. I have a $190 seal kit ordered for it, hope that will be it! I really think after I get all these little problems fixed it will be a good tractor. Oh and I think it needs engine injectors too! I think I will see if I can get a year put on it first as that could be couple thousand dollars for that repair job. So far it has had:

4 new tires $$$

Shop fixed:
new turbocharger
valves set
exhaust manifold fixed(after they messed it up)

And I have worked on:
new fuel gauge and sender
new hour-meter
new a/c hoses and charged up system
put in used radio
hydraulic valves overhauled
windows tinted to help cut down on heat, not for style! (But it does look cool!)
started working on brakes
put in autosteer kit