Posts Tagged ‘ agriculture ’

Happy Ag Day

Today is NATIONAL AGRICULTURE DAY and an important day to be proud of. This day is not only for farmers and agriculturist, but for the whole nation. Agriculture makes the world go round and this should be shared from ear to ear.

This morning when I was getting ready for class, I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed and it was full of posts about national ag day. People were sharing how proud and fortunate they are to have agriculture in their lives. This makes me happy knowing that I have so many friends that are as passionate about agriculture as I am.

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People have a habit of taking things for granted and everyone is guilty of this. Agriculture provides us with food, clothing, shelter, and many more things under the moon. We are always surrounded by agriculture and will continue to be!

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It’s an Annual Thing

Spring break is over and I am trying to get back into the swing of things of going back to Missouri State University. As you may remember, this past week has consisted of getting both bulls and show cattle ready for their respected events. I was able to devote all of my spring break to that, which I am perfectly ok with.

This past week has been muddy, dirty, tiresome, and all of the above. Monday we spend most of the day clipping and working on our show cattle. Tuesday and Wednesday were bull days. We cleaned up about 13 bulls on Tuesday and washed and clipped 3 bulls on Wednesday. By Wednesday night, all of the sale bulls were at the sale barn on display and were almost ready to be sold. Thursday was another show cattle day where we dyed the black cattle and clipped some more. We loaded one trailer to go to the bull sale and one to go to Columbia for the cattle show. Friday finally rolled around and the show cattle crew loaded up 5 calves and took them to Columbia and got them settled in. The others headed to the bull sale.

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I spend my Friday cleaning up bulls and getting everything ready for the sale that took place at 6 o’clock that night. After all of the cattle were sold, we headed to Columbia to switch to show cattle mode!

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Saturday was the heifer show where we showed a Chianina, Hereford, and a crossbred heifer. I received Reserve Champion crossbred heifer and 5th Overall Heifer. Sunday was the steer show and we showed a Mainetainer and a Shorthorn plus steer. All of our animals were presented to the best of their ability to which we were satisfied with. We made new memories and survived a week of bulls, a sale, and a cattle show!

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Once again this was my idea of a spring break that I am perfectly ok with!

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Getting Prepared

Last time I was with you, I was talking about how much snow was on the ground and it felt like it was never going to leave. Well this week is almost the opposite. Everything is a muddy mess! No cattle shows this week, so that means just taking care of cows. However we have a BIG annual event this weekend!

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This time last year was also a busy, busy week with the bull sale and a cattle show all in the same weekend. So not only do we have to get bulls ready, but also get show cattle prepared. Last year, I wasn’t home the week before all of this and I had my spring break the following week so I spent that week getting rested up from the bull sale and the show.

This year is a little different because I have spring break the week before all of this! So I get to help prepare the bulls for the sale and show cattle as well. We are becoming a well oiled machine for this weekend every year. Next year, if the show doesn’t fall on the same weekend again, we won’t know what to do with ourselves!

Snow, Snow, and More Snow

Just as the snow is starting to melt, home gets hit again with some more. Winter is supposed to be winding down and Spring is suppose to be approaching. What is up with this?

This past weekend we were going to attend a cattle show in Chillicothe, MO, but it got cancelled due to all of the snow and the low temperatures. I am always sad to hear that a cattle show has been cancelled, however, this one was a bit different. I know how tired everyone was of the snow, trying to keep everything going, and getting ready for a cattle show was the last thing on our minds. There are always many more cattle shows that we can be completely prepared for!

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Luckily, this week with all of the snow the calves that were born were in a nice and warm bedded barn. The plan for the next couple weeks are to get caught up on everything, keep our babies healthy, and get ready for the next show!

Sweet Summer Time

School at Missouri State University is almost over, and I am ecstatic. This past week, it has been in the 90’s and summer is quickly approaching. The first thing that comes to my mind when I know the weather is going to be hot that day is my livestock. This gets me thinking about summer and how ready I am for it to arrive.

For my family, summer brings long, hot, busy days. One day during our summer consist of waking up early before it gets too hot and rinsing our cattle and putting them under fans for the day. Then, we start to feed everything and make sure they have water, clean up pens, etc. After my chores are done in the morning at my house, I head over to Murphy Cattle Company, rinse cattle and do whatever tasks that need to be done that day.

While I am gone during the day, my sister takes care of the cattle that we have at home and the show pigs. She makes sure everything stays cool and comfortable, has water, and stays clean for the most part. When I get home, my sister and I usually feed first, depending on how hot it is at the time. After that is complete, we walk our pigs when the sun starts to go down and it starts to cool off, and give them a bath. The daily skin care of our pigs consists of cocoanut conditioner about 2 times a day because it doesn’t have a lot of oils in it which allows our pigs to stay cool.

Once our pigs are walked, bathed, and conditioned, it is cool enough to turn our cattle outside for the night. We walk one time through the barn to make sure everything has water and we then head inside and go to bed ourselves. We wake up the next morning and do it all over again.

Having show livestock requires a lot of hard work and dedication. We wouldn’t do it if we didn’t love it! It can be exhausting at times, but we just have to keep in mind what we want to accomplish and what we’re doing all of this for. My sister and I have our own way of telling ourselves this.  That is a countdown to the Missouri State Fair on a dry erase board in our tack room. This keeps us motivated to always try our best to get our livestock presented to the best of their ability when it comes show time!

Results of past summers…

Every Other Memory

We all survived our eighteen hour voyage on Saturday with tired bodies and content hearts. We did pretty well for ourselves at a small show. We came home with the Reserve Champion Chi heifer, the Champion Hereford heifer, and the 4th overall steer on the back of our trailer.

Saturday morning came quite early. We left the house at 4:30 AM. We made it to Nevada around 7 o’clock and started setting up camp. For a while there, it seemed like we were all running around like chickens with our heads cut off. Once we got everything organized, cattle washed, fed and laid down; we had some down time before the show started. Once the show had started, we weren’t as busy as we’ve been in previous shows due to this being a smaller show.

Our cattle were content and hadn’t gotten too hot yet. We’ve trained them well enough to calm down and actually lay down at the show. However, now our next goal is to teach them to NOT lie on their show sides.

There is always something you can do to improve yourself at a cattle show. This may be something as small as clipping something a little tighter, loining your calf at a certain time while you’re in the ring, or moving your calf up a half a step to better present them to the judge. If we all did it perfect every time, what would be the point of going to another cattle show if you already had it mastered. The most important thing to remember when showing livestock is that it’s just one person’s opinion on one certain day. Whether you lose or win, it shouldn’t keep you from trucking along and going to the next one. I think in my head after every show of something I can improve to better the way I present an animal to the judge or even something as small as maybe my heifer needed one more flake of hay to look just a tick fuller.

As I have mentioned before, showing livestock is about the connections and memories you make and the fun you have while doing so. This past weekend was enjoyable and fun with friends and family, and we are all ready for the next one!

Just A Weekend at Home

This past weekend I was able to travel back to the central part of Missouri.  It wasn’t because I had a cattle show, a wedding, or like I had too. It was because I wanted too.  It seems like for the past month or so every time I have been home it was because we had a cattle show, or we had one coming up.

This weekend I was just able to do some dirty work… ok I washed my show cattle once!  The winter time is my favorite time of the year when working with cattle. However, this “winter” is somewhat of an exception considering it only snowed once. You may call me lame, but I enjoy feeding hay in the pastures and just being around them when I don’t have to worry about 100 degree weather.  My show cattle don’t have to be rinsed constantly and be under fans just about 24/7 either.

For quite some time now, we have been getting ready for an annual bull sale. It’s almost here!…  The first step in this process is picking out the better bulls to start getting ready. We brought them up closer to us and started halter breaking them. After we thought they could handle the wash rack, we started washing them and then clipped the bulls. These boys are filthy, mainly DUSTY, when they get their first bath. The wash rack is usually somewhat white (haha), but when we get done with the bull sale, it is just about black.

When the bulls have been tamed, washed, and clipped, it is now picture time.  A vast majority of the bulls are pictured so they can be put in the sale catalog. Then before you know it, it is sale day. Sometimes it is not fast enough, but it is all worth it in the end!

This coming weekend, not only do we have a bull sale, but we have a cattle show in Columbia. This is the MU Block and Bridle’s annual show. This past weekend and week has been and is being spent getting bulls and show calves ready for their events. Once again, this couldn’t be pulled off without the great team we have!