Saturday, December 1, 2012

" Agenda 21 Education" Day 1: ICLEI and IUCN

            

                                                                   AGENDA 21

Before I begin this journey I would like to ask for prayers of protection not only for myself and my family but for others like myself who are beginning to stand up against this.  Taking a stand against this is a very dangerous thing to do and we need all of your prayers.  I realized I was being watched over a year ago.  My courage to do this comes from my Lord and I know he is here guiding what I'm doing.  Thank You All...

I am going to begin at the end and work backwards.  To absorb what I'll be sharing in the next 30 days you must first understand what the UN Agenda 21 is and why it is  being implemented.  It is a worldwide plan to inventory and control all land, all water, all minerals, all plants, all animals, all construction, all means of production, all information, and all human beings in the world.  .
 While many people support the United Nations for its 'peacemaking' efforts, hardly anyone knows that they have very specific land use policies that they would like to see implemented in every city, county, state and nation.  This specific plan the United Nations Agenda 21 Sustainable Development Plan is being implemented around the globe.

In a nutshell, the plan calls for governments to take control of all land use and not leave any of the decision making in the hands of private property owners. It is assumed that people are not good stewards of their land and the government will do a better job if they are in control. Individual rights will be replaced with the needs of communities, as determined by the governing body. 

The affluence of Americans is considered as being a major problem which needs to be corrected. It calls for lowering the standard of living for Americans so that the people in poorer countries will have more, a redistribution of wealth. 

Agenda 21 policies date back to the 70's but accelerated in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro when President Bush signed onto it.  President Clinton took office the following year and created the President's Council on Sustainable Development to implement it in the United States. Made up of federal agencies, corporations, and non-profit groups, the President's Council on Sustainable Development moved quickly to ensure that all federal agencies would change their policies to comply with UN Agenda 21.

                                                                    ICLEI

A non-governmental organization (NGO) called the International Council of Local Environmental Initiatives, ICLEI, was created by the U.N. for the sole purpose of advancing Agenda 21 around the world. Remember the UN Agenda 21/Sustainable Development is a global plan that is implemented locally. They claim more than 1,200 cities around the globe have joined their organization for assistance in implementing "sustainable development" – defined to be the recommendations contained in Agenda 21. More than 600 of these cities are in the United States.

   This plan is a whole life plan. It involves the educational system, the energy market, the transportation system, the governmental system, the health care system, food production, and more. The plan is to restrict your choices, limit your funds, narrow your freedoms, and take away your
voice.

                                                                   IUCN

                 In a nutshell as I understand it the International Union for the Conservation of Nature is the green arm. This group determines what animals and land are and are not endangered or threatened according to their governing body.  Below is a list of those species they deem threatened:

                                                                IUCN Red List


As I unfold this you will see how the Endangered Species Act is tied to this arm of destroying our Private Property Rights and you will meet Karen Budd Falen who has been working tirelessly to stop it.

This international community – the U.N., the IUCN, and the ICLEI – is working aggressively to get Agenda 21 converted into binding international law. It will happen unless informed Americans stand up against ICLEI and Agenda 21.  We must realize that the use of the term "sustainable development" is nothing more than a sound-good substitute for Agenda 21.

                         Monday we will look at the individuals who are driving this agenda and the power and influence they have in every part of our lives.


                                              

Thursday, November 29, 2012

30 Days to Understanding Agenda 21 - We Own What THEY WANT

For over 9 years I've been trying to make sense of the senseless- understanding the Humane Society of the U.S.  As an animal protein producer I felt compelled to study everything I could get my hands on to educate myself on this destructive organization as I felt this was the main threat to our industry.  I started a blog and invited others to voice their concerns which we did enthusiastically. We discussed and cussed, but solved few problems. Along with HSUS I began to recognize more threats; the EPA and its over reaching regulations that directly affect farming and ranching; the abuse of the Endangered Species Act and a growing intent on the destruction of our ranching industry. Personal encounters gave me more reason for concern.  I studied more, attended conferences and summits learning as much as I could about this growing army of enemies positioning themselves to destroy us.  But just when I would think I had found the reasoning key to unlock the box of bizarre, one more disturbing fact would unveil itself.

Last fall that all changed.  All the pieces fell into place.  That was the day I was introduced to the United Nation's Agenda 21.  It would soon become clear that the picture being painted by this onerous group revealed more dangers than HSUS...much, much, more.  Everything I had been struggling to explain became crystal clear.-all the pieces fit.

I have tried over the last few months to share the connections I've found with fellow producers. The story is too complicated.  It is impossible to put in a nut shell something that has taken a highly organized group nearly 100 years to implement.  It can't possibly be explained quickly.

Progressive/Socialistic ideals have incrementally been infiltrating our nation for years.  Past presidents have played roles in ushering it in with few citizens paying attention.  Until now.  The door to set these ideas into motion was opened by the Obama administration and today they are quickly becoming part of our lives without our knowing it.  Unless we take this threat seriously our freedom will be cut short. 
We must educate ourselves and learn to recognize the warning signs-the words they are using, ultimately how the plans they are implementing will affect your lives. 
The next 30 days I will explain how this devastating, socialistic plan is finding its way onto our ranches, farms and into our businesses and private lives. 

I will explain HSUS' connection to this agenda and the individuals who are in control; how propaganda is being used to drive their message; how they've utilized Sun Tzu's Art of War strategies to their advantage and much more.
                                                        Tomorrow We Begin The Journey

Sunday, November 4, 2012

A Story About A "Godly" President

   The story is told of U.S. President James Garfield's first Sunday in Washington, D.C. after his inauguration.  A member of the cabinet insisted that a cabinet meeting must be called at 10:00 a.m. the following day (Sunday), to handle a matter that threatened a national crisis.  Garfield refused on the grounds of another appointment.  The cabinet member then insisted that the national matter was of such great importance that the President should break his engagement.
   Garfield refused.  Then the cabinet member remarked, "I would be interested to know with whom you could have an engagement so important that it cannot be broken." Garfield replied, "I will be as frank as you are.  My engagement is with the Lord, to meet Him at His House and at His table at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow, and I shall be there."
   The President was at worship services the next morning.  The nation survived the crisis.  President Garfield was a member of the Lord's church.
   The Lord's statement is still true: "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."
   Has our current President kept his most important appointment?    
On Tuesday vote for a U.S. President who will "Seek God First."

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Red Dirt Feed

The past few weeks we've all been busy getting ready to host the third annual Oklahoma Red Dirt Red Angus Sale  gathering, sorting, tagging AND grilling and baking.  My brother and his wife prepared food for the "big feed" (over 200) at noon on sale day.  Their grilled sirloin roast, homemade cole slaw and potato salad, a large pot of Anasazi beans and fruit cobbler was all delicious.  I offered menial pre-sale food contributions at various times throughout the week, but nothing like the awesome banquet they turned out.

 Unlike most of the cooks around the ranch who follow recipes to a T, I rarely purchase specific items for specific recipes.
  But remember "My Kitchen Is An Ecosystem"  so...
One evening the menu included Chicken Fried Steak, a big pot of buttered rice and brown gravy, fried okra, baked sweet potatoes with coarse salt and freshly preserved Tangy Dilled Green Tomato Slices.  For dessert, an original Bread Pudding with Hot Buttered Brandied Orange Sauce and Dianna's Homemade Bread.  My menu WAS NOT carefully planned, in fact I offered to feed our crew supper (Okie for dinner) at noon.  Twenty some mouths to feed and I was out of white potatoes and didn't have a clue about dessert.  What did I have on hand?  50 pounds of sweet potatoes that I bought from a roadside peddler outside of Choctaw, Oklahoma, 25 pounds of rice from my "end of the world stash", green tomatoes-mine and the neighbors- covering my kitchen table, 1/2 box of glazed donuts leftover from the morning "ranch office council", and a freezer of BEEF.

 Chicken Fry was a no-brainer, I don't know a living soul who would turn one down.  But I wasn't so sure about the side dishes.  My "reduce, reuse, recycle, regenerate, refurbish, reinvent tendencies paid off. 
                                                                 Here are the results...

Bread Pudding in a Pinch
5 or 6 donuts
5 or 6 slices of hamburger or hot dog buns, rolls, or bread...whatever you have, torn into small pieces
5 eggs or 6 eggs
1 can evaporated milk (from my "end of the world stash"
1/2 cup milk
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick butter
2 tsp real vanilla
Beat eggs, milk and sugar, salt and vanilla. Melt butter-cool.  Combine and pour over dry ingredients. Let stand and soak in well.  Turn into a greased 9x13 pan  and bake at 350 until golden about 25 minutes.  Serve with sauce below

Hot Buttered Brandied Orange Sauce
1/4 cup flour
1 stick butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup orange juice
Boil 2 minutes or so
Remove from heat
Add 1 Tbsp Brandy
1/2 cup milk or cream
Whip until smooth
Serve warm over Bread Pudding

Buttered Baked Sweet Potatoes with Coarse Ground Salt
Wash 20 potatoes in the dishwasher...yes...without suds, rinse cycle only.  Pat dry, rub with oil, sprinkle with kosher or ground salt.  Wrap in foil, bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until done. 

                      Tangy Dilled Green Tomato Slices
Slice, quarter or chunk tomatoes.  In a large pot  boil 2 parts vinegar to 1 part water.  Sugar,
 mustard seed, salt and dill weed to taste. Chill and serve.  

                                         
             Breakfast consisted of "Make Your Own Egg Burritos"
 Flour tortillas spread with a small amount of bacon drippings and returned to the oven in a heavy skillet to warm.  The guys then filled them with what I had to offer: chopped cook bacon, chopped purple onion, shredded cheese, scrambled eggs and chopped Black Forrest ham.  No Complaints :)
                                                                           also
                                 Old Fashioned Waffles
Made on my $4.00 "retro" Williams- Sonoma $50 equivalent awesome estate find waffle iron.  Remember the ones with the little holes (not Belgium-type large) ?  If you're old enough you do.  I am and I love that I found one that works.
In this recipe you separate the eggs and whip the whites which are folded in at the last.  The guys didn't care that so much work was involved in making them.  But I did. And my dad did. Grandma Grace used to make this very recipe every morning  The sad thing, I could only watch, I'm laying off starches and sugars and just had to drool while they ate them with Kasse's homemade Sand Plum Jelly and maple syrup.  Anyway, here is that delicious recipe


                                           2 large eggs, separated
                                           1 1/2 c milk
                                           2 T sugar
                                           1 tsp salt
                                           2 c flour, sifted
                                           3 tsp baking powder
                                           4 T melted butter
                  
Preheat the waffle iron.  In a medium-sized bowl beat the egg whites until stiff. In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, salt and milk until smooth. Add yolks to the milk and beat until creamy. Mix in flour and baking powder (batter will be lumpy…don't overmix or the waffles will end up tough). Fold in the egg whites until combined.
Pour enough batter to cover the bottom, bake until brown or the waffle stops steaming.

 

 
                                                                         
A small bit of apprehension loomed after serving these "thrown together" meals to our hard working cowboys. But an exclamation from one of my biggest critics, a six year old grandson put me at ease, "you're the best cook in the ho wide world". 
                   BTW...today we had Rice Pudding with Walnuts and Raisins from you guessed it, the leftover rice from Friday's meal.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Fall Gathering Favorites

              ...and yet another Fall Favorite,
          a 4-H Favorite! 
I was a 4-Her,
my husband was a 4-Her
 and our kids were all very active.  We showed and judged cattle, horses, sheep and hogs, gave demonstrations, sewed aprons, "fringed" headscarves, canned veggies, fruits, jams and jellies, entered biscuits, sugar cookies and bread...even the boys.  Today, 20 years and 10 grand kids later,  I've gone full circle and I'm proudly wearing the title "4-H Leader" again.  I love the program and what it stands for.  This recipe came from my kid's 4-H era.  Dewey County 4-H is known for its stiff competition when it comes to fair exhibits.  The "Pickering" girls from Dewey county shared this yummy fall recipe  20 plus years ago during a teen leadership meeting. We still make it today. Thanks Sheila, Shelly and Felicia wherever you are! 

4-H Day at Oakwood Mall 2011
                                                 Caramel Apple Krispies
4 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup Grape Nuts cereal
6 oz dried apple slices, chopped fine
1 pkg (14 oz) caramels
2 Tbsp water
Mix cereals and apples in a large bowl.  Heat caramels and water in top of double boiler over hot water -low heat (today you can use the microwave but watch closely as the caramel will quickly burn) Stir occasionally until melted and smooth.  Pour over cereal mixture.  Using 2 spatulas or wooden spoons, toss  3 to 4 minutes or until blended good.  Let stand 20 minutes.  Dip hands in cold water and shape mixture into balls or during Christmas time trees or wreaths.  You can press candies for decorations.  Let stand til set.  You can also press mixture into a greased cake pan.  Refrigerate 15 minutes then cut.
"Double Your Pleasure...Join 4-H" Seiling Jr 4-H Club float entry at Oakwood Mall



 
I found the recipe  below in an old 70's cookbook. It seems like these old recipes called for way too much oil and sugar. I experiment with these recipes and usually try to cut the sugars down and replace with applesauce or other ingredients. I had a can of pumpkin opened from the night before (Pumpkin Soup) so decided to use it and also some of my homemade apple butter. I doubled this recipe as I was feeding a large crowd. The only problem...I had leftover batter, but just baked the extra in a small cake pan. I frosted the cake in thirds...no frosting...frosting with nuts...frosting without nuts.
Every one's Happy


Oatmeal Cake
3 cups water
2 cups oatmeal
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
¾ cup oil
3 eggs beaten
2 ¼ - 2 ½ cup flour
2 tsp soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 ½ tsp salt
½ cup pumpkin
¼ cup apple butter
Combine oats and hot water. Let stand while mixing remaining ingredients. Cream sugars, oil , pumpkin, apple butter. Add eggs and beat well. Sift dry ingredients. Add to mixture. Add oatmeal and beat well. Pour into a greased sheet pan and bake for 25 minutes on 350


Second time I made the recipe I used my homegrown pumpkin puree from my freezer and crockpot apple butter to replace much of the sugar
Frosting
1 ½ stick butter
1 ¼ cup brown
2 Tbsp cream or milk
1 ½ cup pecans

1 ½ flaked coconut
Boil sugar, butter and milk 1 minute. Add coconut and nuts. Pour on cake. You can brown in oven for five minutes or not. I like it unbrowned.


During the fall I remember my mom baking these cookies. I absolutely love them. The recipe came from the Dewey County News Cookbook and were submitted by Mrs.Louis Dvorak.

Caramel Nut-Date Slices

1 cup softened Crisco (1/2 butter)
2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
3 ½ cups sifted flour
½ tsp salt
1 tsp soda
2 tsp vanilla
½ cup finely chopped nuts
½ cup finely chopped dates
Cream first three ingredients. Add vanilla, dates and nuts, mix well. Sift flour, salt, and soda. Mix with first ingredients. Shape into rolls, 2 or 3 depending on size. Wrap in wax paper and chill. Slice about ¼ inch thick. Bake in 350 degrees 8 minutes on ungreased cookie sheet

They speak Traeger, Yoder, Weber and Cook Shack...

"Smoked Sirloin Roast"
 

Compliments of my brother, Monte Chain. This was one of the best pieces of meat I've ever tasted. He smoked it on his Yoder Pellet Smoker. Here at the ranch the guys do most of the grilling. I'm not kidding. I don't speak their language but I sure love their food!

He'll be serving it at the Chain Ranch Red Dirt Red Angus Sale October 27, 2012 here at the ranch.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Lost In A Blog

This is a repost from Thanksgiving 2010. My Grandmother Hazel was an amazing women and we all miss her. Pictures are so important to me, I'm always gathering everyone up for "one more" photo shoot, something that drives my family nuts.  I'm so glad they agreed to gather for this one. 


Five Generations
My mom, my daughters and granddaughters and my Grandma Hazel. My 97 year old grandmother was able to spend all Thanksgiving day with us. For over 50 years she operated our local grocery store and was voted Seiling, Oklahoma's Business Woman of The Year. She's still witty, sharp and feisty


Well...now I AM confused. I've been sick for a few days. I hit a brick wall after Thanksgiving dinner, limply slithered into my recliner Friday and have been sitting here contemplating my social media skills. While surfing blog and websites I've concluded that I'm in need of a facelift. My blog needs it, my facebook page needs it, my website needs it, and I'm pretty sure my mug could use one too after sitting in front of the computer for hours, but I'm just not sure where to start. Do I keep GoDaddy? Do I switch to Wordpress? Our guys were "BRANDING" yesterday, I learned I need one too-maybe I should have got in line. Do I tweek my own design or hire another done? Maybe the latter because some of the conversations between the elite SMers were in the 400 or 500 level. I've been complacently comfortable residing at "introduction to___"level. If you're one of my "10's of readers" just bear with me until I get all of this figured out. My SM skills at this point: not pretty, but functionable- Telling A Positive Animal Ag/Beef Story To Anyone Who'll Listen.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Back In The Saddle...Almost


I’m back…for a while, barring I don’t slip on another tutu or fall over another tombstone.  

The morning after Easter 5:45 a.m. to be exact, I slipped on a princess tutu and tore my rotator cuff.  In June I had surgery and spent the summer going to physical therapy three times a week 60 miles away.   In August my Grandmother Hazel passed away.  She had lived a long, happy, successful, life.   She was 96 years old and it was hard to say goodbye to one of my best friends. 

My shoulder was on the mend,  but at Grandma’s graveside service I fell over a tombstone.  During the service I’d been watching near misses and worried about someone tripping over the one on my end of the tent.  I didn’t realize there was another on the other end.  Remember I have 10 grandkids, 7 of them under the age of 7.  I had my hands full of water bottles, mine and theirs. As I hurried out of the tent to speak to some relatives I fell head, neck and face first over the tombstone my rear and high heels in the air and my mouth full of dirt and grass.  Needless to say, I hurt my shoulder again, among other things, including my ego.    My “audience” watched in awe as I staggered to my feet, grass in my hair, spitting dirt out of my mouth.  All eyes were on me, then suddenly all heads turned away in unison like they’d not witnessed a thing.  I guess they were embarrassed…for me.  I was in too much pain to be embarrassed.  This is the first time I have been able to sit on the couch, watch television, do my nails, eat bon bons and be waited on.  I felt like a princess.   That was short lived.  Last week I graduated from physical therapy and returned to the barn only to leave with a limp after being kicked by an unhappy show heifer.  Returning to my running program is looking like a distant dream. 

Although I’ve been slack on posting, I’ve never lagged on my Facebook conversations.  Our animal ag and pet industries continue to be attacked on a daily basis and at this moment in time I have been compelled to share the facts of these attacks with women's groups across the country. Extreme activists are undermining us in all directions and will not be satisfied until their goal of abolishing animal agriculture and animal ownership is reached.  This sounds like a crazy absurd statement.  I wish it were.  I wish that I was able to devote all my days to writing and sharing my recipes and daily happenings but our business depends on owning and raising animals and when an entity, group or individual sets out to destroy your business you must stand up and defend that business.  That is what I’ve been focused on for nearly a year when our ranch realized extremists were making their way onto America's ranches under a deceptive guise.  For more information about the onerous programs and groups that are destroying our animal ag and pet industries visit  Animal Ag Armed

I will try to return to sharing more in-depth daily activities on our ranch.  For those of you who are revisiting this site please go to My Kitchen Is an Ecosystem  I ‘ve added new recipes and ideas for saving on your food bill by reducing, reusing and recycling in the kitchen, something I’ve done for years. and something that all of us are going to need to do during these difficult economic times.  

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Chain Ranch History


This past year the American National Cattlewomen chose several women to serve as conversation leaders in our beef industry through the United States Farmer's and Rancher's Alliance I was one of those women.and have enjoyed the training through this program which is striving to form a bond between consumers and their food producers.  This video was taken as part of USFRA's competition, Become The Face of Agriculture.  We are trying our luck, but if we don't make the cut, it was something I've been wanting to do with my dad for several years.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Catching Up...

Apologies once again.  I refuse to say that I'll do better at posting because I will not.  My blessed life revolves around my family which today includes 10 grand kids, my husband, my folks, my children and their spouses and a host of in-laws, friends and acquaintances.  I love this life and I wish it were all I had to do- cook, play and visit.

 But fortunately it's not, because if it were I might not ever leave the house.  just revel in this splendid chaos, a scene that resembles Cheaper By The Dozen on most days. I do have the responsibility of helping manage our ranching operations. The blessings of my big family include the fact that now the physical labor is left up to my husband, dad (yes, he's 85 but still climbs aboard his 850 John Deere bulldozer everyday and levels things),brother, sons, son-in-laws, nephew...and now two grandsons that are always ready and willing to jump in the cab of a tractor or combine to pull their share of the load. I've even relinquished my swathing, raking and baling duties which I do miss at times.

My focus over the past eight months has been on the numerous attacks on our industry.  It has been so much of a concern that I've designed (with the help of other concerned animal ag producers) two other blogs: animalagarmed.blogspot.com. and agvoicesunited.blogspot.com  So this explains why I've left my "first love"...my personal blog and website...for a time.

Animal ag producers are under attack like no other time in history.  We are not only having to tell our story to consumers who know little about where their food comes from, but are now having to  stand up against covert attacks within our own industry.   After an incident on our ranch in October it became apparent that some individuals in our own industry have caved to greed. It has left  me confused and now skeptical, groups and individuals who had my complete trust have now lost that trust.

But that's for the other sites.  I will try to keep Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde separate and keep this site carefree and cheerful...but I'm not promising anything.
Catching Up... 
On Ranching
All of the heifers finished calving around the last of March.  Those calves were gathered and worked  (castrated, ear-notched and vaccinated)  this month and turned out on grass.
The grandsons have been to numerous stock shows; won some lost some, always having a great time meeting new friends.
We're cutting canola, getting ready to cut wheat and putting up alfalfa.

 Hmm I'm sounding like those Christmas cards with letters in them that I have trouble reading... (sorry I know some of you send them but if they're longer than two pages...you've lost me)

Anyway

On Other Things
In April I attended the Animal Ag Alliance Summit in D.C. a summit that I will not miss as it  covers issues that will determine whether our family will be able to continue to provide safe, affordable animal protein for the world.
 I hate to fly so I took the train like I have the past two times I've attended.  I love doing this.  I drive three hours from our home, catch Amtrak to Chicago, transfer, go to sleep and wind up in Union Station around noon. I have this down pat as I did it often when our youngest daughter and family lived in D.C. 
Everyone worries about me when I take this trip but I assure them I NEVER let myself get into compromising situations.  That was until this time.  My 2:30 a.m. train was three hours late.  Generally there are several others boarding the train at this time, so I'm never alone.  However this time I was alone...or so I thought.  The quaint little station is tidy; renovated, houses a cute coffee/shop which isn't open at 2:30 a.m. It's relatively safe. I was unaware that my train was going to be three hours late (that's how train travel is) I called to check on arrival times and each time I called it became later and later.   I stayed in my car as long as I could, but after two cups of coffee I had to make my way inside.  As I opened the door to the station a man was lying on the floor under the trendy coffee shop counter.  I immediately did an about face and hurried back to my car.  After sitting/floating I had to try once more.  I thought maybe he'd left.  No, he was still there, but he hadn't moved, so I thought he's either dead or asleep.  So I tippy-toed in and hurried past him.  I just prayed to God that he would protect me ( I shared this story with my husband and told him not to tell my folks because they would worry and he said,  "The Lord always watches out for you; he knows you can't take care of yourself."  So anyway I hurry into the bathroom; hurry out and as I pass a long clothes closet down the hall I hear snoring.  It's another person.  I hurry out and get in my car.  My heart is pounding. There were two of them.  I lock the doors and wait.  But now I must think about getting my cargo into the station (when the train arrives there is no waiting, you either get on or you get left) I had to have everything out and ready to board.  So I just pray again. I get out drag my luggage to the entrance, slip pass the (dead/sleeping?) man, and with snoring coming opposite of him  I hurry and push all my belongings into a corner.  Then I hurry back out to the car/ lock the doors and wait.
I'm then pulled between watching my belongings and getting killed.  "What if they take my stuff?", "No, it's too heavy". "But what if they take the little bag, the one with my laptop?".  So I go back; peek in the door and the man under the trendy coffee shop counter is still laying in the same position.  I'm really thinking he might be dead at this point.  So I open the door and slowly step inside.  It's 5:30 a.m. by now and as I start to walk in I hear rustling coming from the closet.  A disheveled man in khaki shorts, hiking boots and a jean jacket about my age appears.  He said, "We're harmless"  "That's my brother down there and I'm Joe".  I could do nothing more than smile and introduce myself.  By now I could see other cars in the parking lot with folks getting ready to board the train, so I was somewhat more at ease. 
Joe offered me a seat at his table and I accepted. As he was pouring out his life to me another man stepped in with a cup of coffee and a newspaper for Joe.  I'd seen this guy before as he had been in the station when I'd boarded the train on previous trips.  I always thought he worked there.  He didn't.  He was homeless also and Joe's friend. And he had connections with the night shift at Burger King, which explained the coffee.
In the end this homeless man who'd lost his job was a true gentlemen.  He shared his paper (wanted to share his coffee-had to refuse that), and helped me get my bags on the train.
I said a prayer for those three men.  It was such a sad eye-opening experience, but one I feel truly blessed to have encountered.

Season's Greetings-Past, Present and Future
  Andy

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Beautiful Bovine Birth


A Full Moon Plus...



The Duty of Calving Out 300 Synchronized Bred 1st Calf Heifers...




Is Not...

 
For The Weak...

 




Or Faint of Heart.




Witnessing the Beauty of Birth...PRICELESS


So to clarify some things if you're new to bovine births.  Synchronizing heifers, in our case, means bringing their heat cycles closer  together through a fairly complicated process and then artificially inseminating the animal.  What it all boils down to: approximately 300 first calf heifers start having their calves within a 10 day period.  This gets pretty intense as you can have several heifers calving at the same time.
It is important to use bulls with low birth weights on first calf heifers.  EPD's or  Expected Progeny Differences allow  producers to pick sires that fit their programs.
In most cases if a low birth weight bull is used, the heifer will not need assistance in calving, however; there are always a few that need help.  This certain night we were up until 2:00 a.m. delivering.





Identifying Bad Actors

This past Saturday night a few Oklahoma cattlemen gathered to listen to R CALF USA's Bill Bullard speak on Making America's Beef In...