Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bo Meets Jackson

Today was a pretty big day around the small town of Fairview. This time last year our state and community was devastated by the tornadoes that ripped across the South.

  Homes and businesses in our county had extensive damage and some areas are still under construction.  In a fundraising effort to spread awareness of the damage done on April 27, 2011, former Auburn football player, Bo Jackson is biking across the state in a "Bo Bikes Bama" campaign. People can donate money to ride along different sections of the state with Bo and other "celebrities".  The entire group stopped at our high school today.  The entire school (k-12) and it seemed like a lot of the community was there as well.

Ben and I were talking to some of the students and they were not sure who Bo was, but they were still pretty excited to meet him (unfortunately, this made me and Ben feel pretty old). Not sure either?

Some of my sweet students...

Back in the day...
We got there a little too early and had to wait a little longer than we thought, so the kids were given out before the bikers got there.

Jack found shade under a tree
 To tell you how big of a deal this was - Ben left the farm and stayed for Bo and the rest of the bikers to ride in. 

Bo knows bikes?

Ben put Jack on his shoulders and I could tell he was determined to get Jack's picture made with Bo Jackson.

*note* Jack just recently grew out of his Bo jersey so he wore Cam instead

So for an Auburn graduate and life-long Auburn fan, this was a pretty big deal -

This boy has done a lot of neat things in his four years...

A good day...

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

cattle on the loose

So the Sunday before Easter we were getting ready for church when Ben got a call that we had cows out. These calls usually come at very inconvenient times - Christmas eve night, the middle of a downpour, or just as we are sitting down to eat. It doesn't really matter when it happens we have to immediately drop what we are doing to check things out - OR we could have cows all over the east side of the county.
This particular morning 50 heifers somehow got out of their pasture. The kids and I went on to church while Ben, Darrel, and Bart tried to round everything back up.
Unfortunately we don't live in an area that I consider "range land". Our cattle ground consists of lots of herds on different pastures within a 15 mile range. So basically we have to be extra mindful because we have lots of neighbors and roads that we come in contact with. When we have cows out, they can quickly be on someone else's land, etc.
By the time Ben got there, part of the heifers were on their way to a big area of dense woods and the other group was making it's way to a major state highway - on a Sunday morning. LONG story short (or semi-short anyway) they all ended up back in the pasture together except this one -

One heifer broke her leg before making it back into the pasture, so she was taken to the meat processor. We always finish calves off in the feed lot with grain. However, in this case we had to make an exception and just turned everything into hamburger meat.

Monday, April 23, 2012

stand back - hen litter

I posted a few days ago that Bart has been spreading litter. Well, I have a few pictures, but I won't get too close while the spreader is in action for fear of being hit :) SO - a spreader chain broke and had to be brought to the farm so Ben could put it back together. I helped as much as I could and shot a few pictures so you could see what we're working with.
This litter comes from hen/layer houses. It stinks to high heaven, but makes the grass almost black it gets so green!
And then there's this pic of Jack and Ava - Grandpa and grandmomma's glasses...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

easter 2012

Ok, so I am pretty much two weeks (or more) behind about posting Easter pictures. These are mostly pictures from the house, dying eggs, and at mom and dad's barn hunting eggs with friends and family.
Dying eggs is a pretty big childhood memory for me. I always loved the preparation and time spent together, dressing up and going to mamaw and papaw's house to hunt eggs with all of my cousins. So here are some sweet pictures of my kids dying eggs...and yes we use coffee cups to dye our eggs in because that's what we did when I was a kid. I almost bought the little egg dying cups, but then thought no, the coffee cups have to stay. I distinctly remember my dad drinking a cup of blue egg dye instead of his coffee one year, precious!
These are the few pictures I have of the kids dressed up in their Easter outfits before the virus hit once we were at church (LOVELY)...
The last picture is of Jack with his wheat. He came home one day with a sock (yes, off his foot) full of wheat seed which he insisted on planting in this broken flowerpot. Of course we HAD to have a picture of him with his wheat on Easter morning.:) Sweet boy..
Jack talk -
Oh yeah, here is the conversation I heard Easter morning when Ben was dressing Jack - "Dad, boys don't wear white pants, pants aren't white they are blue or brown." " I know son." "Dad, I don't like this blue sweater." "It looks good Jack, you look nice." "But dad, the blue covers up my white shirt and I like my white shirt. Can I wear my white shirt over my blue sweater?" AHHH - like father, like son.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

East Coast Steaks

I missed loading steers Thursday. We always try and load early before it gets too hot and the driver can get on the road. Ben left the house pretty early to meet the truck at the scales, so I didn't wake the kids. He did take a picture of the cab-over truck that loaded them up and took them on a trip up the east coast...
These steers are going up the east coast to New York. They are being marketed in Whole Foods Stores as all-natural beef, so it's a pretty good deal. ALSO - after lunch Sunday we rode around looking at different fields and made this beautiful discovery - little shoots of corn poking up out of the ground. Look close...can you see them?
We no-till plant all of our corn and wheat and 95% of our soybeans. In other words, we don't disk or plow the ground to prepare a seedbed prior to planting. All we do before we plant is spray a burndown herbicide to kill the winter weeds and plant into that undisturbed surface. This saves lots of trips over the fields, saves fuel, and greatly decreases the potential for erosion. Ben says we dont have enough topsoil anyway, we can't allow what we do have to wash away.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Moving steers

We started the morning moving a group of steers across the road and closer to the barn. They were sold several weeks ago through Superior Livestock Auctions and are going to be loaded Thursday morning.
This group will be going to an all-natural farm in New York. A pretty long trip ...
I love this time of year when the grass is newly green and the calves are fat and shiny...
Moving calves went pretty well, then Ben had to doctor a bull with foot rot...
What is foot rot? Click here.
The green is KoperTox, it protects and seals the infected parts of the foot to keep it from getting worse. He gives anitbiotics to heal the foot and infection. Then we had to find and doctor a sick calf...calves get pneumonia, too. This one was pretty sick -
Ben was able to get a rope around it and doctor it from the four-wheeler. It had a pretty good momma that stayed close by.
All is well... After lunch Ben sprayed pastures and the kids and I went to track practice. This is a picture Ben took yesterday while he and Jack were spraying a field. They had stopped to refill and Jack washed his hands in the foam marker...

Monday, April 9, 2012

Just a weekend...

This is a post I had started several weeks ago, but had trouble with my camera - Mom cooked lunch Sunday after church for the family, mamaw and papaw included. It was so nice to visit together. If any more babies are born they will need a bigger table, mom says it's a blessing, I agree. Dad and the kids played in the basement before we had to go back to church for night service.
It's strange because growing up the pool table was not to be abused at any time.... now there is a grown man and two kids playing with a LEGO collection on top! Isn' it funny how the rules change for two sweet kids?! Nursery friends. I have a picture very similar to this of Jack and Amos.
Little kids singing (and Elli).
Sweet baby Lola and her daddy
Jack spent the afternoon putting out hay with Ben. I stopped by the farm to pick him and they drove up on the four-wheeler, like father like son eh? At some point we will have to have the you-can't-drive-that-fast discussion.