Romantic Western

Often times The West, cowboys, and ranch life are overly romanticized.  People watch Legends of the Fall and suddenly they want to move out west and live in seclusion and be a cowboy (P.S. I've never seen Brad Pitt or anyone close to him working on a ranch).

Or they read The Pioneer Woman's blog & think that ranch life would really be the way to go.  P.S. most ranch houses don't look as nice as her's- especially the kitchen.  For example this is my kitchen, most ranches/farms I've been to have kitchens more like this.  And most ranchers aren't pulling in the kind of revenue she is- just something to think about.  That family has worked for generations to get an established ranch, & her website I think brings in some good coin.  P.S.S I personally love reading her blog :)

 Today I want to bring you to the harsh reality of living on a ranch.  During this keep in mind I live on a very small ranch, so you can only imagine how much more a large scale ranch would require.  One major aspect to running a ranch is tending to livestock.  This must be done every day routinely, despite the weather or how you feel.  And this need increases in the winter time, just when you don't want to be outside.

Yesterday JoJo & I had to feed the horses & tend to the chickens.  This must be done in the morning so we waited until 9:30am until it warmed up a little.  When we walked out the door is was a warming five degrees!

First we feed the "little guys" which includes our year-lings, two year olds & one mare.  They get one and a half bales.

JoJo was freezing (so was I), and was not happy after feeding the little guys.  So I put him in the car to warm up a bit.

Don't worry, his demeanor changed after a few minutes of heat.  Then we were off to the "big guys" (our grown-up geldings & mares).

The big guys require two bales of hay.  "I'm hungry, is somebody going to feed me... like today!"

Let me explain something to you about hay bales.  While a brutish man could probably grab a quarter of a bale at a time, I can only do a couple of flicks at a time.  See each of those little sections, those are flicks.

I can throw two or three at once, but that's it.  So it takes me a while to get two bales of hay strewn about the corral.
Hello Ike!  Ike is our oldest & my most favorite horse on the ranch.  He's the last of the Tennessee Walkers that we have; and though he's huge he is the most gentle & faithful horse ever.  He also always has a rainbow strewn about his neck.  But he eats a lot of hay which means more work for me today.

Now everyone is fed & happy.  On to the chickens.

First give the hens some fresh straw for their nests and give them water & feed.

And then this guy tries to attack my camera... or maybe he just couldn't see where he's going.

And we collect the eggs.  I know what your thinking, mmmm... farm fresh eggs.  But what people fail to think about is someone has to wash those farm fresh eggs.  Trust me, they don't come out all clean and shiny.

Finally you get home & slip off your boots & they look like this inside.  This is also how your jeans, coat, gloves, and hair look- coated with hay; hope there's some left in the corral for the livestock!

So, those were my chores for the morning.  It took me 45 minutes, slightly long because I have to drag little ones along.  And guess what, I get to do it all over again today!

I would like to mention that living on a ranch is also very wonderful and fulfilling.  But it comes with a lot of hard work.  So if your thinking that you want to live in the country on a ranch, or if your little one wants to grow up to be a cowboy, come on out for a visit.  I'll show you the true ups and down of ranch living; we always welcome free labor around here.  I might be able to make you think twice... unless Brad Pitt comes riding up on a horse.

1 comment:

  1. Asher would like to take you up on your offer of learning ranch life! I'm sure he wouldn't add any time to your chores!! Haha.