The Superior Way

As if our life isn’t crazy enough, it’s about to get crazier. I feel like we constantly are living in a whirlwind and as fall approaches that whirlwind is about to be even busier. Tait has been gone so much lately. A couple weeks ago he was in Sheridan, WY selling cattle at the superior sale. Then last week he was in Denver, CO selling more cattle at a different superior sale. This week he leaves to go to Wyoming to gather, ship, and deliver our cattle that he sold on the superior livestock auction. It sounds simple I know, but there is really so much more that goes into it. The whole process takes quite some time.

Superior Livestock Auction is a satellite video that markets cattle to the nation’s livestock industry. It’s amazing because you can sit on the couch in your home and buy or sell cattle that are across the nation. It really is pretty neat, you can read more at http://www.superiorlivestock.com/home/about-us/about-superior-livestock

That being said, Tait is a representative for superior livestock auction. This is what the video looks like on the TV

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Tait begins by videoing the cattle for a customer, which trust me he has down to a science. In order to get a good look at the cattle on the video that he uploads to the tv for the sale, he has to ensure that the cattle are moving at the right pace. They can’t go to fast and they can’t go to slow or be at a stand still. In addition, the lighting is very important. Sometimes Tait waits until the sun is just right. He also has to be certain he has a steady hand. If the video is shaky you can’t see the cattle very well. All these small details and many more are important to Tait because if the cattle buyers can’t see the cattle on the video when watching the auction on their TV they most likely aren’t going to buy them. img_2608

The next step is to sell the cattle, which is what Tait did in both Sheridan and Denver. The cattle are sold on a contract, which includes a delivery date, how many head of cattle are sold, the feeding program the cattle have been on, what breed and sex the cattle are, the base weight of the cattle, the vaccination program the cattle are on, whether they have horns or not, where the cattle are currently located, where the cattle will be delivered to, the brands that are on the cattle, etc. By having such a detailed contract the buyer knows exactly what to expect in their purchase.

img_1573The last steps are to gather the cattle, get brand inspections, ship, and deliver the cattle, which is the step that Tait is currently on.The cattle have to be weighed and weigh in at whatever the contract said they would weigh. To the left is a picture of Tait weighing cattle on our scale. However, the cattle can also be weighed on the truck at semi scales.

Tait just got home from Denver Friday night. We had a day to pack and get him all ready to go and now he’s already off for Wyoming to get the cattle ready for the delivery. It  takes a crew to gather the cattle and get everything ready.  It also takes a lot of gear for a cowboy to be able to do his job. A cowboy needs his cowboy hat, chaps, gloves, coats, clothing, wild rag, boots, spurs, food for the week, bedroll, rain slicker, horse, truck, trailer, saddle, horse tack, horse feed, etc. You have to be prepared for any kind of weather because you never know what mother nature will throw at you. Whether its sunny, or rain, sleet, and snow, the cattle have to be delivered on that contract date.

 

Once the cattle are delivered, the job is considered done. Tait takes pride in his work. His clients come to him for his reputation of integrity and being honest. His customers are satisfied to the point where they’ve started coming back to buy or sell more cattle. He gets the market for both the buyer and the seller. I couldn’t be more proud of the man I get to call my husband. He gets the job done the superior way.

~The Rustic Ranch Wife

 

 

The Biggest Little City in the World

Reno has been such a fun little trip. The Reno rodeo and BFI provide us with a perfect trip in the middle of June. What’s even better is that between Reno and the NFR we get a nice little rodeo vacation every six months that provides lots of opportunities for SHOPPING!!! Oooops, I mean for watching my husband rope! Yay! We also get to spend time with great company.

Tait and I are extremely blessed to be able to do what we love and hit the rodeo trail. We are even more blessed that we have family that travels all over to watch, support, and cheer us on.

Rodeo is a sport that has both ups and downs. This year Reno was a bit more of a down. However, the downs are what define us as cowboys and cowgirls. You have to be able to take that down, learn from it, and carry on. The bad runs provide us with the perfect opportunity to learn our flaws so that we can turn them into our strengths.

The great thing about rodeo is that there is always another one!

~The Rustic Ranch Wife

 

Spring On The Ranch

Spring is a busy time of year for a rancher. Between gathering the winter desert ranges, branding the calves, and turning out on the summer ranges there is hardly a spare second. I know that it sounds simple, but there is really a lot of detail that goes into it. Everybody has their own role.

The thing I love about it is that I got to spend time with my family and friends. It is a family friendly environment. We can all go, laugh, and have fun along the way. Heck, I even took my selfie stick for some extra fun. (My husband rolls his eyes at me for that, but I love pictures and we have to document the memories somehow.) Since I’ve been slacking on my blog lately the photos below are from different times throughout the Spring.

~The Rustic Ranch Wife

My Decorating Style

When I think of how to explain my decorating style it’s hard because I love the western/rustic look, but I also love the farmhouse style mixed with some vintage, shabby chic, and antiques. My house includes a combination of all of these themes. I guess you could say I’ve created my own style. Now if only I had a name for it. Any ideas?

My entryway has lots of cowboy boots (we may have a slight addiction, especially because this isn’t all of them), an old barn wood mirror, and a cow hide table runner, which fit the rustic/western theme. However, I’m sure you can spot touches of vintage, farmhouse and shabby chic. My favorite antique is my great grandmas cowbell.

My dining room has a cow hide and cow hide placemats, which fit my western theme, but then most of the decor fits more of the farmhouse/antique style.

I love to incorporate antiques into my decor, especially when they have meaning and belonged to a family member like my great grandpas journals in the bird cage.

My kitchen goes along with a farmhouse theme. However, there are some antiques tucked away too. The pots and pans on top of my top cupboard belonged to my husbands great grandma and the oil lamp on top of my other cupboard belonged to my great grandma.

My living room has touches of farmhouse with the old window, crates, tin, and barn wood.  The barn wood also fits the rustic theme along with my cow hide and cowboy fringe pillows, old cow bells, horse harness, the saddle my grandpa gave me when I was a baby, and a pair of old chaps.

My family room is definitely more western, but I’m sure you can still spot touches from the other themes.

The family room includes our trophy saddles and belt buckles and has old barn wood frames of rodeo pictures. It also includes an old scale and an old window with a picture of my husband and I. One of my favorite pieces is the old wood table, crates, and pullies because they came out of my husbands great grandmas house.

In decorating my house I’ve enjoyed designing my own style. I love being able to incorporate bits and pieces of my husband and my ancestors into the design.

I guess you could say I’m a bit of a “junktiquering” queen. But, hey one man’s junk is another man’s treasure.

A special thanks to my grandma Woodward for blessing me with my decorating skills.

~The Rustic Ranch Wife

A day in the life of a ranch wife…

You’ll get used to mud. It covers your your driveway, you’ll never have a clean truck, it dirties your wood floor from his cowboy boots tracking it in (I could seriously sweep and mop every day), clumps in your entryway, and stains and ruins pants that cover the laundry room. Then there is the constant battle of brushing it off your horse before you can saddle and pushing cow pens at the feed yard so that the cattle aren’t knee deep in it.

 

Dinner before dark? Yeah right! However, the freezer is always full of meat. There is beef, beef, and more beef.

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You’ll get used to cowboy gear landing where it falls. Cowboy hats, spurs, boots, and wild rags among other gear will be strewn all over your house. Just put them away so he can find them the next day. He can’t help it after a long hard day.

You learn to resolve conflicts because cattle mix in the pastures and never stay where they are supposed to be, the hired help doesn’t show up for a day of work, the market is down, or the cattle aren’t the weight you desire.

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Patience… You learn patience… Trailing the cows up the mountain is an all day process. A day after day process. There may be that one cow that keeps giving you trouble and trying to go astray, or an old cow that isn’t as fast. Those old cows are sure beneficial when gathering time comes around. They know the way home and show the others. They may be slow, but they are consistent.

The cattle get on the highway at 2 a.m., or in this case they get in your neighbors front yard. It’d be to easy to get out during the day, or even better to not get out at all. It’s part of it, you just take the officers call, get out of bed, and go get your cows.

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Holidays…. What are those? Cows require care every day whether it’s a holiday or not. They need to be fed on Christmas, birthdays, and mothers day. You learn to plan around and make it work.

You get to spend date nights in the tractor feeding the cattle at the feed yard. Yes, I think his tractor is sexy, ……! You know the next part lol

Family pictures are all instantly cute. There is always an old fence, cattle, horses, old barns, weathered equipment, wild flowers, creeks, sprinklers, or an insanely beautiful view.

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You learn to work hard, ride for the brand, and pay attention to detail. The calf that’s droopy today may not be here tomorrow if not attended to in the right way at the right time.

You learn to be honest and reliable. A job that is half done isn’t worth doing. A half built fence will still let the cows out. Hard work when done right pays off.

Ranchers build friendships that last a life time. A day of branding, pushing cows, taking in the views, or any time spent on the ranch brings people together.

Ranch life is hard work. It’s our way of life. You learn to love it. It becomes unimaginable to picture life any other way. The long days, late nights, and early mornings are suddenly worth it when you begin to see your dedication paying off.

I can’t tell you how proud I am of my ranch guy. He devotes his life to ride for the brand. Not many people can hack it. A full day of work on the ranch can be overwhelming, but he works every day in a precise, efficient manner. I tell you what, good or bad, I wouldn’t trade my life I’m a ranchers wife!

~ The Rustic Ranch Wife