view sourceprint? 01 Ramblings from a Ranch Wife: January 2015

Random Thought:

"The darkest nights produce the brightest stars"

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Winter Break

The boys went back to school on Monday after a good winter break.  TR was ready to go back, QT was reluctant, and I was definitely not ready for my boys to go back to school!  TR is our social butterfly, he lives for recess and being with his friends.  I worry about QT.  As excited as he was for kindergarten, formal school hasn’t been his thing so far.  Most days moving cows in a blizzard sounds like a better idea to him than going to school.  As for me, I prefer having my boys’ home with me.  I spend most of my afternoon counting down the minutes until they come home.  It is pretty quiet around our house without my wild little boys.

That first day back, QT and I were waiting outside the school for his teacher to come and collect him and his classmates.  I felt like we had done a pretty good job keeping up with where his teacher left off for the break, and really wasn’t too worried about him forgetting anything he had learned in school up until now.  I was listening to other parents talk with each other about what school work they did with their kids over the break. Those parents were busy!  They were working on their letters, numbers, and coloring all break long.

Other than bedtime stories, we never cracked a book all vacation.  While QT’s classmates were watching cartoons, he was sledding behind the feed wagon.  While other kindergartners were practicing writing their numbers to 30, QT was counting cows to 50 on the feed ground.  While they were practicing their letters and sounds, QT was recognizing his cow’s name on her ear tag and reading animal tracks, or looking for “M” words like muskrat, mountain, and mud.  We hunted coyotes, set traps, shot our bb guns, and explored a good part of our big backyard.

QT may write his 3’s backwards, or not always color inside the lines and we need to work on that, but he can find his way home from anywhere within a 5 mile radius of the house, can tell the difference between most of our cows and tell you their names (better than I can anyway!), and tell you the difference between a coyote’s and raccoon’s tracks.  Listening to these parents made me think about my teaching choices over the break.

Should I have spent more time working on more traditional school type activities?  Maybe, but at this point I feel that having a son who is aware of his surroundings and has the tools to navigate this world is just as important as being able to color inside the lines.  Education is important, but I want him to experience life from the outside, not based on what he sees on a video game or reads about in a book about someone else’s experiences.  I want him to know how to work, get outside, get dirty, and play.  Let’s face it.  He’s only going to be little once, and he will have plenty of time later to write a book for someone else to read about growing up on a cattle ranch in northern Nevada.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Frosty Cows

Ever take a really cool picture, then get it home and realize there is one of the Cowboss's friend's stupid Corriente cows right in the middle?  Yeah, it sucks.  But I am slightly  jaded because the Corrientes make me crazy.  If there is an open gate, or wrong direction to go, they will do it, and it is usually when you are trying to get the tractor through the gate and keep the Corrientes in and you are by yourself.  You will spend an hour getting out of the tractor, chasing the Corrientes off, opening the gate, running back to the tractor, get almost though the gate before the Corrientes get to it, have to jump out, run them off and try again.  It is a vicious cycle.  Hopefully a neighbor driving by will take pity on you and watch the gate as you drive through.  Most likely, it will be on a day you are hurrying to make it to an appointment in town.  You will be late.  True story.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Out With the Old, in With the New


Where did 2014 go?  It feels like just last week I was sitting down to write my 2014 resolutions and making a plan for the coming year.  Now here we are and it is 2015 and I am trying to figure out where I am and what I want to do for the next year.  I think there will be some big changes for me, and I'm not sure where I want to start.

2014 won't go down as my best year ever.  In March I lost my best horse.  (Yeah, I know it was just a horse and if it doesn't get any closer than the barn, we're alright).  It was a partnership developed over 13 years and I really expected him to be the horse to teach my boys how to rope.  It hurt.  In May, the Cowboss, QT, a couple of cowboys, and I along with a trailer load of horses were in a frightening car accident that we are so blessed (horses included) to have all walked away from.  (Yes, I believe in guardian angels).  Both QT and I can scratch riding in an ambulance off our bucket lists!  Not to be out done, in July we had a 4th ER trip with TR to get stitches in his armpit.  For a bit it felt like we weren't going to catch a break!

Along with the not so great, a lot of great things happened in 2014.  We survived first grade.  That was huge.  At this time last year, we weren't really sure we were going to make it!  QT started Kindergarten and my world didn't end.  Both boys had horses buck with them and they rode them.  I got bucked off, but got back on.  We saw amazing cattle prices and were able to pay off all of our cows.  I got a new dog.  I'm still working on finding the horse that fits me.

As 2014 ends I am happy to report that we survived!  We have made some new friends along the way, learned many lessons (some the hard way!), and are anxious to see what 2015 throws our way because I'm pretty sure we can handle it!  My goals for 2015 are to focus more on myself.  Selfish I know, but I want to be the best wife, mom, and person I can be.  I want to be healthier and happier, so I can be the best person I can.

Happy New Year!  Hope 2015 brings you great things!