Thursday, December 26, 2013

Week 52/52: Andy's finale

Well, this is the week I have been looking for!!  The last week of the Andy saga.  I never did find that little outfit that Mom sewed for Christopher.  I had hoped to have a photo of Christopher all grown up holding Andy and the matching outfit.  Oh well.  (Honestly, I did not look too hard for it either.)

What I did find was a photo of Christopher wearing the outfit while hanging out with some of his second cousins. 
Christopher is there in the front.  He was often seen sucking the two middle fingers of his right hand!
Just so you can see how much he's grown, this is Christopher today. 
Brett, Annette, Mark & Christopher 
(Members of NoDak Herefords)
As for Andy this week, he's going out as an angel - a snow angel that is!!
Thank you for following us in our 52 Week Photo Project.  I will see what next year brings as to whether I do something like this or not.
                                                             Annette & Andy

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Week 51/52: Andy visits the Nativity

I happen to collect nativity sets.  I have over 100 of them.  I selected this one for Andy's photo for a couple of reasons:  first, it is stuffed (just like Andy) and second, it also happens to be made by my Mom (just like Andy).

Andy felt quite lucky to get to hold the Christ Child.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Busy week of deliveries

It was a week of nice deliveries.  I don't mean Christmas gifts either!

Brett purchased a Peterbilt semi about 10 days ago.  He utilized on-line bidding. The auction was taking place in Fargo, ND during a nasty storm.  He purchased it on a Wednesday.  Mark & I were heading that way that weekend so we were able to bring it home to him.  He was pretty excited - until he started to really look it over!  There are just a few things that need repair. 

A couple of looks of the semi tractor.  The second one shows a smiling Brett!

Getting things hooked up.
Mark & I purchased a different loader tractor last week.  It was delivered here this week.
We purchased a New Holland T6050.  It isn't brand new so it is just 'new' to us. 
Mark is backing up to help pull the 'new' semi that spun on the snow until it was hooked up to a trailer.  It just needed some weight for traction!

Both of my guys were up at the feedlot when they needed the tractor,
so I was asked to drive it up north.  My first time driving it. 
So, our last 10 days
Wednesday of last week Brett bought semi. 
Thursday - Mark & I drove to Williston to look at this tractor. 
Friday - Mark & I drove to Fargo to try to get Brett's semi (it was too cold to get it started) so we drove to Valley City were we had meetings and a room to stay. 
Saturday - we drove back to Fargo, purchased some supplies and got the semi to start.  We came home.  Thus starting the deliveries!
Well, that is an update of our last couple of weeks.  I got a new camera last week and it was used to take these photos.  So far I like the Panasonic FZ200 camera too.

Weeks 49 & 50: Andy

Good thing there are only two more weeks left of this as I am slacking more all the time.

Here are my entries for Weeks 49 & 50:

Andy & Ann played Battleship. 
(Okay, really Mark & Brett did then I got to take the picture.  Brett won! 
 I think Ann was sitting by the winning board.)

Andy visited Santa & Mrs. Claus.  They even gave him a bag of candy/peanuts.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Andy - three late entries (46-48/52)

I am behind on my Andy entries.  You know, in the 52 Weeks Photography Project.

Andy traveled with me (& my new camera) on a road trip so here is what he was up to:

While in Valley City, Mark and I stayed at Three Oaks Guest Inn.  It is a lovely, older home along the river.  We did not spend much time there as we were busy with business, but it was nice.  Andy just HAD to try the banister before he could leave!

Andy & I stopped in Jamestown on our way home.  I took a couple of minutes at the World's Largest Buffalo monument.  This concrete bad boy is 26 feet tall and weighs 60 tons.  We didn't walk over there as the gates were to be locked in five minutes! 
Andy did want to 'drive' the stage coach though!
Then on to home.  Mark & I had been gone for a few days so it was nice to get back home.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Fall's Work

We have completed our harvest.  The last crop in was the corn. We had all of our corn chopped for silage.  Christopher's corn was combined.  It was wet but will be rolled (cracked) to be fed to the cattle in the feedlot. 

We have weaned all of the calves.  We do this in a multiple step process.  I thought I had written about it before, but I guess not.  I will have to try to do it next year.  Anyway, weaning, as you probably can guess, is when the calves and cows are separated so the calf will no longer nurse the cow.  We now have the calves in the feedlot.

Our cattle have been enjoying fall grazing.  There are some grazing a barley field and others are in the corn, pea & canola fields.  After we harvest these crops there is still some waste.  There are ears of corn & pea pods laying in the fields that fell off the plant for some reason, the barley & canola seeds that did the same and have now started growing again making for lush, green grazing.  This is a great way to add value to the crop (that would have otherwise been wasted) and to extend the amount of time that we do not have to feed them hay.  We did get a couple of inches of snow Saturday/Saturday night but that was not enough to end this "aftermath grazing".    Some of the snow has settled away and I hope for a bit of sunshine to take care of the rest that is out in the open areas. 

The men have been busy working on fence repair. There are some new fences being built and others are mended.  Some of this fence was around a field of Sudan Grass that was planted as a cover crop (to help dry out soil that did not get planted in the spring).  We had to wait until after November 1 (government regulation) to utilize this crop.  We plan to let the cattle graze this field as another way to help preserve our winter hay supply.  Our hay supply is a little short this year due to all of the rain we've had.  Most years we can cut hay in sloughs (marshy ponds) and get quite a bit of hay, but this year they still had water in them. 

The forecast sounds like the ground will freeze up this week.  Once that happens we will get busy hauling the hay and straw home.  

No photos this time, but it was time for a farm update instead of Andy!!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Andy: Week 45/52

Spotted this knight at Badlands Grill, a nice spot to get a steak in Minot. 

 Maybe Andy wants to be knighted?

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Andy: Week 44/52

I hoped Andy would dress up for Halloween.  The trouble was that I didn't have anything for him to wear.  I was going to dress him up as a cowboy but we will have to settle for this:

a "boy" sitting on a cow!
Hmmm, it seems Andy has a little theme of riding fake animals! 
Last entry was a duck and this time a cow.

Andy: Week 43/52

A closer view of Andy and the "Ugly Duckling"

Monday, October 21, 2013

Andy: 42/52

Andy spent a bit of time with his maker.

Here he is with my parents.  Mom made Andy for our eldest son about 23 years ago. 
My parents have been married for 52 years.  Dad is 85 and Mom is 75. 
They are in basically good health.  I am thrilled to call them Dad & Mom.

Andy: 41/52

Andy and his own Pumpkin Patch
Or should I said Gourd Patch?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Andy 40/52

This week Andy travelled with me to volunteer at a Pediatric Dental Days event. 
He was hanging from the chandelier at our hotel!

Pediatric Dental Days at Standing Rock Reservation

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Pediatric Dental Days on Standing Rock Reservation.  Standing Rock is in south central North Dakota and north central South Dakota.  Along with four other people representing Children of the Harvest in our conference of the United Methodist Church, I volunteered to help with this event.  We helped over 300 children with their dental care on Friday and Saturday.   

There were about 40 stations where dentists and their assistants were able to work.  They were able to do cleanings, fillings and tooth removal, perhaps they could do more but I don't know for sure.  The doctors did need to refer some children to get work done elsewhere if there was too much to do at this location.
This is the working area before we started.  Most were for the dentists but some were for dental hygienists.  Some of the children had been pre-screened to help direct them to the proper people back here.
There was coloring, movies and 
games for the children while they waited.
When chairs were available we moved the next person (first come, first served) to
the 'on deck' area.  There was a movie there too. 
Moving about the various waiting areas were hygienists sharing tooth care information and stickers with the children.  This area, and the adult waiting area, were separated by a wall.  It was nice to have that division so nobody had to see (or hear) what happened on the other side and get even more anxious.  You see some of these children have never been to a dentist before.
This dentist had such a fun shirt on the first day that I just had to share it with you!  The front said something about Dr. Seuss and Green Eggs.
The back said '...and Ham.'

Another dentist wore brightly colored canvas shoes.  He happened to have bright pinkish/purplish shoes this weekend.  He also has a pair with 'Green Eggs and Ham' (guess that is a dental theme).  A pair with his name embroidered on them and some others that are other bright colors.  This man's shoe collection matched his wonderful personality.
Of course there was a need for supplies.  This was the supply area.  Tools, cleaning supplies, crowns, and many other items that this non-dentist person didn't know the use of.

This is where all of the work was done.  It was a busy area and only a few upset children.  These folks were great with the kids. 
Pastor Kathy, me, Mike & Libby who head up Spirit Lake Ministry Center, and Marilyn. 
The "Purple Shirt People" as we were called!  We helped guide the families, worked with the adult family members as needed and generally had a nice time!  We were given the purple shirts so folks could easily find us and by the end of the first day we'd gained a title!

Oct. 15 update:  The final numbers are in for Dental Days in Fort Yates on the Standing Rock Reservation in North and South Dakota. 367 children were seen with over $150,000 in dental work performed.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Promoting Beef (Andy 39/52)

I spent a couple of days promoting Certified Hereford Beef at a new grocery store in our big town.  The only place to purchase Certified Hereford Beef in North & South Dakota and Minnesota is at Cash Wise and other Corborn family stores.  We served samples of grilled beef.   I helped as a representative of the local Hereford breeders and North Dakota Hereford Association

The grilling and sampling area

My little buddy Andy got to meet Harry the Hereford bull. 
(you can barely see him by the bull's hoof)

Here is a closer view of Andy.

Showcase full of Certified Hereford Beef
A couple of closer photos of the beef case


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sunday Scenery

Okay, I know this is being posted on a Thursday.  I am a little slow, but the photos were taken on Sunday.

This past Sunday we moved about 130 cow/calf pairs and 4 bulls home from their summer pasture.  They had been out on the Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge for the summer.  It is a beautiful location which I had never visited before. 

The refuge headquarters are about 35 miles away from our place.  We had four stocktrailers for hauling cattle.  Three of them are shown here.  Each trailer took at least 4 loads.

The cattle were happy in their pasture.  Here a few are resting before we put them in the working corral.  This pasture had our black cows with their calves (most of them whitish, some black).  Our black cows are bred by Charolais bulls.  Charolais bulls are white.  The calves grow up to be great feeder calves and then beef for you!
This is the working corral that we rented.  We could move the panels around to make one huge pen or two pens of varying size.  We had two pens plus the built-in alley way.  One pen was smaller so we could load the trailers and the other, larger, pen kept us well stocked (no pun intended) with more cattle to load. 
On the drive to their new pasture, I saw these two adult moose.  The photo is not great as it was with my cell phone but I just had to share!  These moose were only about three miles from our place.  Some trips when I went past they were laying down in this soy bean field. 

This was the view out my window.  (Before you discipline me for taking photos while driving you need to know I have already gotten a tongue lashing from our 22 year old son.)  In this photo you can see a cow nose peeking out of the trailer (sometimes it was an ear), the oil wells that are now plentiful just west of us and the green grass.  Green grass is rare this time of year. 

Then there was this crazy thing.  A couple of weeks ago C&P were out checking cattle along with her parents and saw this sheep in with our cattle.  It is not ours.  We think he was a stray and was just happy to find company as he has been with our cattle ever since.  Poor guy has not been sheered in a few years.  We'd like to find the rightful owner, but in the meantime we have a woolly cow!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Week 37/52: Andy again

I think I am a bit behind on my Andy weekly photos and posts.  Oh well, I will try to catch up!

This week Andy spent a little time in the yard.  He liked the pile of leaves - like any kid!!

The leaves are not pretty any more like when they were on the trees and turning.  

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Week 36/52: Hang in there Andy

Andy visited the Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge.  Here he is checking out what I thought was a bird house but it had electronics in it!!  Oh well, perhaps it was a thrill for the refuge staff to see Andy peeking in at them.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Week 35/52: Yellow Field Pea Harvest

The grain harvest has finally begun at NoDak Herefords.  With spring planting being late, so too is the harvest.  Brett is a farmer through and through.  He did a majority of the planting, all of the spraying and now is running the combine.  (Hmmm, reminds me of the story of Chicken Little!)   Don't worry, others on the farm have kept quite busy too.  Christopher seems to be a full time rancher.  There are always cattle to check and fences to repair.  He is running here and there all of the time!  Mark has been swathing canola.  I am the "go-fer"  which means I try to help any of the guys when they ask.

I did get a few photos to share with you.

Andy thinks he can drive the big combine.  Brett is not so sure!

Here is a view of the combine.  It is in a field of Yellow Field Peas.  The plants look just like the peas you can grow in a garden.  We wait for them to dry down.  When the peas are hard and dry enough it is time to combine.  The front part of this combine has a special type of header.  It is called a flex head.  A flex head is designed to skim across the ground and be flexible enough to (hopefully) go over any rocks and just "scoop up" the pea plants & pods.  All of this goes through the combine.  The seeds end up in the hopper (holding tank) and the rest gets spat out the back.  If we are lucky, our cattle will get to come into these fields this fall.  They will love to eat the seeds that got away!  Also any green plants that will be there.  This is called "after grazing".
Brett had filled the hopper on the combine with peas so it was time to dump them into the semi.  Once the semi gets full it will be taken to a storage building (grain bin) on our farm.  The peas will stay in storage until we decide it is time to sell them.  Marketing is vital to running a profitable farm and is quite time consuming.  It is one thing that we always need to improve on.  We hope the peas are 'food quality' which means you could end up eating peas raised at NoDak Herefords!