Where's the song ~~ "Don't let your daughters grow up to marry a Cowboy" ?

​​​​​​​Life is tough! Requires hard physical work, long, long days of pain, dirt, and broken fingernails.​
​Days of frigid cold & scorching heat; through the dust & mud; daybreak into the darkness of nite~~​
​the heart & body becomes toughened & weathered replicating leather!​
​A forever constant factor for a real Cowboy's Wife is tons of sweat, oceans of tears and a constant 'drought' in the wallet!​
​​​​​​​​​IF​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ she wants to spend anytime at all with her Cowboy, she must do as he does, you become partners!​
​​​​​​Kick off your boots, grab a cup of coffee, sit back and envision yourself in my life!​
​... It really isn't that bad! There are many rewards to be had to make it a great lifestyle! ...​ ​​​​​​​

Saturday, September 20, 2008

T'Was a S.A.D. Saturday...

...on the farm.

(no, this is NOT our farm!)

Unfortunately, it's that time of year that we must think about winter feed.
Ours is tucked neatly, in Kodak colors on the pantry shelves lining the basement walls, and sparkling of a frosty white behind the freezer doors.
*giving myself a nice soft shoulder pat*
But..these four legged, outdoor critters, oh no, they have to be difficult!
They need a completely different supply than ours.

Their preference is to have it packaged in colorful strings, either round or square in configuration; dry in texture with an 'earthy' flavor, and placed at a level low enough to hang their heads over the whole plate, Ala NaturĂ¡l.
They will nuzzle it strewing it around,
toss it upwards into the winds, and munch away.
(Actually, I do know a few humans that prefer that posture also.)
They even think it's fun to trample the strays into mud mash...
being much too wasteful in my opinion!
I was taught to eat what is put on my plate...all of it!
We were not allowed to play in our food, let alone lie in it!
Luckily, I don't have to be their menu planner!
They are content with the same forage day after day,
with possibly some oats or other grains sprinkled about.
Horses and cows are grazers (humans are too in their own way....*snicker) and winters in the northern country does not provide natural grazing grasses for them to survive on, they depend on us!
That is S A D!
Us humans, must find, haul, stack and even pay for their nourishment!
Yes! With our hard earned green backs! Can you believe that?
Not only do we pay for our own, we must pay for theirs too!
Yes, I know, I know...they will pay us back in their own sweet time,
but I'll bet they won't figure the cost of living increases into the matter!
That too is S A D !

~ ~ ~
The economy this year has everyone up in arms.
Hay prices have sky rocketed!
Not only are there horses being turned out in the wilds to fend for themselves, there are many cattlemen cutting back in their herd numbers. They too, are losing the battles.
Will the 'Cowboy way' die a slow & quiet death?

If so, that will be S A D !
~ ~ ~

Yesterday, Cowboy went to fetch some winter feed.
(Not for us, for them!)
We much prefer to support the locals, but when the hay growers cater to the export market and carry their pricing over into the local's pocketbooks...
us locals, struggling to survive and care for the critters,
must weigh our options.

We weighed ours.
The price of hay + fuel = $107.00 per ton CHEAPER!
We went North!
(Actually, only Cowboy went, I stayed back to hold down the fort,
which was a good thing!
I had a stampede!............. JUST TEASING!)

He went North! No, not "North to Alaska" *sing, sing...
Just North!

You know.....to where the Hay is cheaper!

North to the Washington/Canadian border...almost (20 miles shy thereof).

A long-g-g-g-g-g 4 hour drive, empty~heading up.
A long-g-g-g-g-ger 5+ hour drive full ~coming back.
I must say long-g-g-g...as this Cowboy has a problem with sitting
behind a steering wheel and staying awake!
Not real sure how he accomplished this feat, and yes, I do worry!
We don't own cell phones, so for me, it was a wait and hope day.
Hope he didn't find himself in dreamland, deep in the Columbia River somewhere!
That would have been S A D !
But I became HAPPY when the whites of his eyes pulled in the drive late.
I could see from the porch he had toothpicks keeping those eyelids open.
The pain of that alone, had to be what kept him awake...don't you think?

We got up early this morning for the normal routine....
not the same normal as the past 4 months,
but the normal for the next 8 months.

Today ended my front porch mornings, quietly sipping my coffee wrapped in the blanket (yes..blanket, not robe.. because dear, procrastinating "Hydro" called today to say my robe wasn't mailed until today! She promised it was, but we will see.)

Bring on the chores! I can only do so much, I'm out of barnyard shape!
I can quench the thirsts, visit with the chickens
and woo them into a few more eggs;
I can toss some forage, and sweep the planks.
But, tth-tth-that's all folks! for today....

While I shed my jacket and worked up a dew,
Cowboy positioned the rig and grabbed the tractor for off loading the hay.

Now this is where the S A D really begins.

So... S A D
Since his return of the night before, he's done nothing but rant and rave...
about the comforts of the ride, the gadgets galore.

He wants his old Jalopy~no more!
S..... So Sorry Charlie (oops, I mean Cowboy!)

I know you'd prefer the shiny new wheels, such as you borrowed.
Easy on the fuel and the power to pull.
Just be glad we have a verrrry nice 'neighbor' who would lend his to you!
(Just say it was yours for a day, who will know!)

A..... Already spent.. the allotment and then some...
(We need to find a way to fill our wallets, not deplete them!)

D..... Dollars...are gone
(too, too many! )

Quit being a Cowboy, then maybe you could afford those wheels!

(Oooops...but then you wouldn't need them... right?)
This HAY expenditure is a huge PITFALL to our Cowboy life!

Or is that Pit Full?
It does go in one end and comes out the other...
to fill a Pit....... Full!

It seems to Burn a hole in our pocketbooks,
As fast as The Hay Burners can chow it down!
(and that is pretty fast!)

That is S A D !

Hence, filling the Pit........Full!

.....But HAY! That's OK. I will recycle it next year...in my compost!

~ ~ ~

I know, you will always be a Cowboy,
and we will always be buying hay,
So forgot about those shiny new wheels
until another day!
I'm so sorry...

So S. A. D. !


Sage said...

The economy is bad over here as well, but I guess you never know quite how much it impacts every day life.

Will hope Cowboy understands about his shiny new wheels not happening.


RazorFamilyFarms.com said...

When I had my horses, I had to travel for hay (not REALLY far but far enough that gas was an issue). The irony of having to travel for hay did not escape me. My farm was surrounded by other farms with HUGE hay fields with timothy/orchard grass or alfalfa. They all sold their hay to racing farms in Florida. I was SOL.


terri said...

Poor Cowboy! I wish he could have those new wheels. Tell him, if it makes him feel any better, my hubby is still driving his '99 Silverado.

The Blonde Duck said...

That's a shame. A rancher buddy of ours had folks stealing his hay out of his barn! I hope that doesn't happen to ya'll....

Rue said...

Good morning Barb :)

I'm glad Cowboy made it back safely. I had no idea you had to go get hay for the animals. For some reason I thought you grew it.

I hope he gets his truck one day and I hope you get your robe back! ;)

Yep, the fair opened again 2 days after the storm. Crazy, huh? LOL


Linda said...

Here's to winter, always with us even in summer:(

Janice Thomson said...

We always grew our own hay but I do remember traveling south to the USA border a few times to buy hay when the droughts did us in...
As always it's a special treat visiting your blog :)

Cactus Jack Splash said...

Glad you got your hay. It is expensive this year. I bought mine early and have seen the price continue to rise.
I worry about all of the horses whose DORs don't think their animals are worth the extra cost of feed.

DesertHen said...

We have watched the hay market continue to rise. Hayman's boss has sold all of his dairy hay at record prices this year. The dairy men are complaining, the truck drivers are complaining.....the hay we grow here is hauled to Idaho to a dairy farm. The economy is bad, bad, bad....if only the wages for the working man/hayman/cowboy would rise too!!

I hope someday "cowboy" can have his shiny new wheels.....=)

Amanda said...

Hay hay hay!! Where did he go up there? We are back from Montana, out trip cut short by the company we work for. We came back via the Okanogan and had a great time. We have decided we like it up there waaaay more than Montana which has turned into Yuppieville. Our hearts were broken as we drove through Montana and saw all the progress and "growth" lots of faux cowboys from somewhere else. Do you know what the rarest creature in Montana is?? A native Montanan, they have been run off by the Googlers and Yahooers. Sad but true.

Sarah said...

Now I have North to Alaska stuck in my head!

I'll never get to sleep tonight!

Theresa @ Take A Sentimental Journey said...

The economy is BAD here too in the south. And we ain't seen nothin yet!

Pearl said...

Hi Barb... very creative post, even though it was SAD... it never ceases to amaze me; the amount of work that goes into farming and raising animals, etc. May God bless all who do such hard work...

I hope you'll soon get your robe back! Keeping my fingers crossed for you... God bless...

~hugs 'n prayers~


Mrs Mom said...

I love it WOW. You summed it up Oh So Well, what you all go through to live The Cowboy Way. (One of my favorite movies BTW.)

Chin up there wonderful woman, and get your barn chore muscles back! ;)

Alex said...

so glad your cowboy made it back safely. Hang in there..unfortuanately, everyone is feeling the shock of the economy right now...in some sort of fashion.

Renie Burghardt said...

Oh, poor cowboy! But he managed to get the hay. Yep, the economy is spiraling downward more and more. I'm glad I don't have to buy hay, but I do buy chops, chopped corn for those that are not familiar with the term, and it has also skyrocketed! It is sad about people who just let their horses go to fend for themselves. And here I am buying chops for the deer!

Have a great week, Barb. I am trying to sign on as your follower and keep getting error messages. I will keep trying until I succeed!



JennyLu said...

Well Barb, I hate to say it, but I had the coggins pulled on my horses (the two remaining) just so I could sell them and not buy feed this winter! I just don't know. I've got some cash on Reserve to buy hay if I need to, BUT... there is so much more I could spend it on!

Mountain Woman said...

Hay here in the Northeast is very expensive and it's a long snowy winter too.
We started putting our hay fields back in shape this year in order to try to get the costs under control but it's so expensive running a farm. We're a vanishing breed.
I have something for you over on my blog when you have time to visit.

oregontribal1 said...

I feel for you lady! DodgeMan1 and I are pretty much in the same boat. We buy feed for H.A.C., and the little twerp eats our food instead! I hope I never hear of anyone around here turning their own horses out in the wild to "fend" for themselves! I just couldn't do that!! They depend on us so much and to abandon them like that makes me shudder and want to string 'em up!! They should be held accountable.
My dad always said,"feed your family first, then worry bout your critters. And don't have so many critters that you can't care for them."
Take care! Teresa *P.S. The music thing is easy, but took me FOREVER to figure it out.

Train Wreck said...

Look at what a great friend you are! You make me sound so good!! I love how you worded that! You are hired! I read it to my husband he was amazed, he wanted to know if you were a writer!! (See I told you!!) Thank you so much for your support! You know I would do the same for you! You are the best far away friend ever!! Love you!

Egghead said...

Oh I feel bad for you. My mother buys hay for her horses and she struggles with it every year. We don't have cows this year but when we do again I am not looking forward to the cost of the hay. I love the truck and my farmer would also love to have one like that. So now cowboy and farmer can cry over that truck while they sit in their old ones that just keep on running. With gas prices and the economy I don't think it will be any time soon for farmer.

Anonymous said...

Well, I guess this shows us where our virtual limits are. We've had too much hay this year! Even to the extend where it has stayed on the field because that was cheaper then baling and selling it. No buyers! And no way I could send you some. I like your point of view however on us working hard and paying lots of money and them spilling it in the mud and trampling all over it! So ungrateful!