Friday, December 8, 2017

In the Wide-Open

What Wyoming lacks in trees and population, it more than makes up for in sky.

On our run, Hubby and I scanned the hills for wild horses--only saw tracks this time--but the dogs hunted for antelope and rabbits.

Ellie's grown a lot, but the big country made her look tiny. (Hmm, I probably should have posed for a photo here.)

From this hill, we could see the Big Horn, Absaroka, Owl Creek, and Bridger mountain ranges. 


"Your eyes are windows into your body. If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. " ~Matthew 6:22 The Message

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Under New Management

We used to have Nigerian dwarf dairy goats, but Ellie has appropriated them for herself. Yes, we still feed, water, bed, move, milk, and clean up after our little herd, but only under Ellie's extremely-close supervision. The goats aren't that thrilled with their new shepherd. She runs a tighter ship than did the previous administration. 


"I never lose sight of the fact that just being is fun." ~Katharine Hepburn

Monday, November 27, 2017

Ellie's First Hike

The dogs and I were finally able to drag Hubby away from his Sunday afternoon football games to go for a hike. (Truthfully, I would've stayed home to watch the Seattle Seahawks except that they weren't playing on our network. Hubby said that we're not close enough to Seattle, so we usually get the Denver Broncos games instead. I suggested that we move slightly west.) Remarkable weather, amazing terrain, and joyful dogs made him almost forget about wild card teams and playoff standings.


"The beauty of the world is Christ's tender smile coming to us through matter." ~Simone Weil

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Open Enrollment

I put our two senior citizen cows, Princess and Daisy Mae, in the small pasture behind the house where they can get better feed and shelter this winter. They're in good shape but, like other people around here, their joints are a bit creaky in the cold mornings. 

Princess, shown here, has celebrated 13 birthdays and raised 10 big, beautiful calves. Eight of those have been our top-selling steers; one was a heifer whose first calf this year was a genuine hunk. So, if Princess wants to graze the greenish grass in my back yard, she's more than welcome. She's earned it.


"There shall be an eternal summer in the grateful heart." ~Celia Thaxter

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Good-bye autumn. We'll miss you!

Here are a few September and October shots you may have missed, unless you get the Hayseed Files on Facebook. If you do, thanks so much! If you prefer books and nature to social media, hooray for you!

Quaking aspen between our house and barn.

Sugar's fuzzy winter face.

A last-minute pollen shopper.

It's like shopping with a toddler, complete with whining.

Camera-hog. (Taken before the winter fuzz grew in.)


"Our faith doesn't begin until our ability ends." ~Nicole Crank

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The "Fluffy" Ones

I almost forgot to show you how much the heifer calves have grown these past seven months. (See last month's 575 Pounds Later for then-and-now snapshots of some of the steers.) Here are five of our not-so-little darlings, all bundled up in their heavy winter coats. 

Tell the people that we're not fat, we're just fluffy, they told me. 

Roll your eyes if you want. I'm just relaying the message.







"The leading cause of death among fashion models is falling through street grates." ~Dave Barry

Thursday, November 2, 2017

A Study in Contrasts

We went to bed in autumn but woke up in winter. It happens every year but still amazes me.

It's Ellie's first winter and Bodie's thirteenth.

The snow was pretty, wet, and pretty wet! Mud beneath the soggy snow made for slipping and sliding.

Ellie romped in the snow most of the day.

Quaking aspen, gorgeous in every season.

Bodie is gradually warming up to his new sister, but he thinks she gets way too much attention.

"Those who look to [the Lord] for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces." ~Psalm 34:5 NLT

Friday, October 27, 2017

On the Brink of Winter

Sugar's people have been trying to get in as many rides as they can before the snow flies. In Wyoming, snow is more likely to fly in the wind than fall gently to the ground. 

Neighboring towns and mountains have already had snow. To date, we've seen only a few stray snowflakes bouncing and spiraling horizontally, struggling against the gale to make landfall. (The sun came out later that day; the light rays reached us but the radiant heat blew away, probably to Nebraska.) 

Please comment below: I'd love to hear where you're from and what your winters are like! 


"When the storms of life come, if they come to me personally, to my family or to the world, I want to be strong enough to stand and be a strength to somebody else, be shelter for somebody else." ~Anne Graham Lotz

Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Golden Girls

I think October's buttery sunbeams flatter nearly everyone, even goats. Ariel, Mindy, and Calico look expecially lovely when framed by honey-colored cottonwood leaves.


"Ah, Hope! what would life be, stripped of thy encouraging smiles, that teach us to look beyond the dark clouds of today, for the golden beams that are to gild the morrow." ~Susanna Moodie

Monday, October 16, 2017

"Evermore Joy Ye"

Ellie's deliriously happy around little kids. "She's so excited," one mom said, "she's practically wriggling herself inside out." 

Maybe it's because she's a bit tired of her fuddy-duddy parents. All day long, poor Ellie hears, No, you can't chew that! and, Let go of that! and, No chasing cats! and, Come on, Ellie. Time to go outside and go to the potty. 

But kids, like puppies, are all about the fun. 


"Evermore joy ye." ~1 Thessalonians 5:16 (Wycliffe Translation)

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

575 Lbs Later

My, how the time has flown and the calves have grown! I can hardly believe that it's already time for the steer calves to go to market. Talk about a bittersweet day! On the one hand, it's such a sad goodbye; on the other, the money they bring is our long-awaited, sorely-needed paycheck.  


Anyway, I hope you enjoy these then-and-now photos of some of the boys. 

Big Jake




Little Ikey




"Whoso is wise...will diligently consider the mercy and loving-kindness of the Lord." ~Psalm 107:43

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Blush and Glow

Sandwiched between summer's swelter and winter's bitter, Indian summer in the Bighorn Basin is all kinds of delightful--and it's just begun.

Mosquitoes and wildfire smoke are nowhere to be seen. Flies that aggravate the stock are almost gone. Golden sunshine and crispy coolness add zip to work and walks. Honking geese, flashing mountain bluebirds, and swarming starlings punctuate the sky. Snow gleams on the mountains. Pumpkins permeate stores and steps in town.  Potato soup, made with creamy goat milk and just-dug carrots, onions, and russets simmers in the slow cooker. Best of all, the edges of the countryside have begun to blush and glow!  

Our little apricot tree always puts on a big show.

Miss Ellie loves our walks, even on a drizzly day.

 Quaking aspen shimmer in our front yard.


"Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint on it you can." ~Danny Kaye