June 26, 2014

Teaching the Next Generation

Kids love to go to work with their parents every now and then, but every day gets old. One of the main reasons we bought this place was so we could teach our kids the value of good hard work. Some are more receptive than others, but we believe that in the end they will always have fond memories of working alongside Mom and Dad on the ranch. Hopefully they will want to come back and ranch too.

 Today we had a few things to do before we moved our cows. We had to drain a water tank so we could move it to the new pasture. These plugs are not the easiest to remove, but we got it done. I used some small pliers to grip the inside steel and turned hard. Most of the water drained on it's own, then we lifted it up and dumped the rest out.

I told my daughter to stop taking pictures of my backside, but she speaks a different dialect of English.  We loaded the tank on the flat bed, put 150 pounds of salt and mineral inside to keep it down and headed out to the pasture.

There's always some leveling to do when setting up a water tank. 

 Then I strap it to the post so the cattle can't push it around if it gets low on water. I've never been good with ratcheting devices, but am starting to get them. You just need to identify where the locking mechanism is, how to use it and loosen it. Then practice ratcheting and loosening.

Filling up the tank before we get the float on.

I had to remove a float from another tank to put on this one. Sometimes I hate to undo things my husband tightens. Today was one of those times. I'm hanging on a tiny island surrounded by mucky water because it rained last night. The float screws that hold it to the tank are SO tight I can't loosen them at all. I had to go back to the truck for a tool. Meanwhile children are fighting and goofing around waiting for me. I finally get it and it's time to let the cows into the other side of the pasture.

Then I discover this. Some small child has drawn all over the door of my truck with a marker. I almost lose it. Fortunately it wasn't permanent and came off with some water on a napkin.

Some calves are usually at the back of the pack when they move through the electric fence. Sometimes they don't make it through with everyone else and end up running down the fence line to try and catch up. My photographer decided to go chase them back, but just chased them away, through another electric fence, pulling out posts and causing a lot of slack and more work. Geometry plays a big role in ranching. The angle at which you approach cattle will determine the direction they move. If I ever home school that will be a geometry lesson I will include.

Then one of my wires to jump the electricity from one fence to another had the insulated clamp on the end missing. So I wrap it around the wire that isn't hot and clamp the other end to the hot wire.

To finish up we set out some salt and mineral. In the end the fence is hot, the water is cold, and the cows and crew are hungry. Teaching this next generation how to work is a lot of work on it's own. If I survive teaching them, I can survive anything.

 photo summersigyellow2_zpsf38de9a2.jpg

1 comment:

  1. So glad it wasn't permanent marker! I would have lost it if it was!


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