Last chance to jump on a wild pony

Well, the boys almost had a qualifying ride on the wild pony races. We are really proud of them and every go round they did, they got better and better and closer and closer to getting a ride in. Certainly made improvements over the weekend. What a blast!

No running of the bulls this year:(

Pretty bummed that we couldn’t watch the running of the bulls this year, even more bummed that they didn’t even do them. I believe this would have been the 13th year for the event. Oh well, at least the boys got to get their wild pony race in. This time, they almost got on! They had a much better run than they did on Friday evening. But, shortly after that, the rain came down and we were once again, making a mad dash for the mini van. Gotta love Alberta weather.

Strathmore Heritage Days Stampede Day 2 – Parade Day!

1000 feet above the Strathmore Stampede Parade
1000 feet above the Strathmore Stampede Parade

Day 2 of our favourite weekend! Great morning with family and a good old Alberta storm (with nearby tornado) to finish the day.

2016 Strathmore Heritage Days Stampede starts now!

Our favourite weekend of the year is here! So stoked for all the fun and activities and some good ole fashioned visiting with friends and family. We’ll be vlogging the weekend. A highlight for us this year will be the boys trying to get on a pony in the wild pony races. Here’s day one that came with the first attempt to ride. The boys did fairly well for their first attempt and and now they know what to expect, let’s hope night two gets them closer to riding a pony!

Preparing the pasture for the horses and cows

fencingThe little bottle-feeder cows we picked up a few months ago are really starting to fill out. We have completely weened them from the bottle and have been eating just hay for about a month now. With that being the case, it’s time to get them out to pasture.

A few weeks back our neighbour had rented a post pounder for a long weekend. He had  mentioned that he’d only need it for a day at the most and if we wanted to do any fencing, we were welcome to use it as part of the same rental. Sweet! The entire fence on the front of our property was in really rough shape (missing posts, most of wire gone) and we also wanted to get some cross fencing done so we can use our land to feed some of our animals.

The horses are really loving all the open space they now have
The horses are really loving all the open space they now have

So I helped my neighbour with his fence  posts and he, along with my father-in-law, helped put in the fence posts for all of the fencing that we had wanted to do. That was a few weeks maybe even a month ago.

Fast forward to last week: time to finish off the fence. Part of the process was simply stringing and stretching the wire and part of it was to install two gates that we were given and were trying to re-use. Gates are expensive and when someone is just throwing them out; it seems a shame to just let them get tossed. I’ve had this sitting our land for about a year, and it’s great to actually have them put to use.

Lately we’ve had a whole lot of rain here (5 inches in just over a week) and that made for some boggy conditions for fencing. With the quad it wasn’t too bad, but with the bobcat, that things was getting stuck like crazy. Especially with the post auger installed. I ended up having to get quite creative with how I installed the first gate. Working alone usually leads to some interesting/hill-billy solutions.

Getting creative with machines, slings and come-alongs. The joys of working alone...
Getting creative with machines, slings and come-alongs. The joys of working alone…

But, after a concentrated effort last week (I was shocked it took the better part of a week) it’s great to have the cows and horses running around and grazing in the newly fenced pasture.

Here’s a little video from our YouTube channel about it. Cheers!

Spring Bee Hive Maintenance

One item on our spring time to do list was check on the health of our bee hive. We had let proper care and concern for it slip away a little bit in the fall (we never took the honey super off, tapped it late) and were a little concerned as to what we might find now that spring is here. To our relief, the bees have done well over the winter in spite of our lack of proper care. A few days ago we headed out and did some required maintenance (clean the dead bees out, scrape out the mites etc…) and also tried to start another hive. We’ll see how that goes, but at least the one we have did well over the winter and the bees seem quite happy and content.

Whatever it takes

We have 4 little calves running around on the homestead now, and these are just little guys. Bottle feeders that we picked up from a local feedlot. Originally we started with 5, but 3 days ago we lost one. Kind stinks but I guess that how it goes with these types of situations. Sometimes you can do everything in your power, and it just doesn’t work out.

We are at the same point again with Coby’s little calf, Sadie. She was taking the bottle really well, but has now been weakened by Scours, or diarrhea. We are now having to stomach tube her to make sure she gets her nutrients. Both the milk replacer and an electrolyte solution. It’s a pain, but, sometimes that what’s involved when you want to raise your own meat. I could only imagine what it would be like to have 40 or 50 or more calves at one time.

 

Cows and Computers

After the last two days of technical difficulty, I’ve had enough. I picked up a new computer and, we bought 5 little calves! Yesterday was a super busy day and super exciting! Now with bottle feeding these little guys, we’re going to be even busier for the next while.

Hockey in the off-season

Well, regular season might be over, but that doesn’t mean there is no hockey to be had. Actually, it’s pretty much as easy as pie to play year ’round, or to have your kids play year ’round. As Alan Jackson once said, “It just takes money.”

Some people still think that having your kids in spring hockey or summer hockey means that their kid is somehow a better player than “other” kids from his/her team. Nope. Not true. Not anymore. Now, anyone can pretty much make any off-season team if their parents are willing to fork out the cash to make it happen.

We take a different approach to the game. I want to give my kids all the help they can get when they are playing something they love so much. So during the regular season, we make sure they’re at every practice, have good performing and safe equipment, and we even get them into specialty sessions, camps and a little one on one training. But pretty much only during the regular season. Once hockey is over, it’s okay for it to be over for a while. Grass is turning green, the temperature is warming up and the days are getting longer. There are so many things that can be done outside now, and why waste this nice weather stuck in an arena if you don’t have to be. Okay, that sounds different than how I probably mean it. I love hockey. The game, the lifestyle, all of it. But, with anything that we really enjoy being a part of, it’s good to sometimes take a break. A little stroll in another direction for a while.

I’m looking forward to that part of the year right now. But, our one last kick at the cat is a fun little 3 on 3 tournament that is hosted by the Wheatland Athletics Association. It’s a great time (a little disorganized on the minor level of who get’s which dressing room etc…) and all in all a pretty fun weekend.

Both boys finished their semi-final games on the winning side and are going into Sunday playing for the tournament banner. Coby for PeeWee and Isaiah for Atom.

It’s really nice (and rare) that both boys play at the same arena, and even nicer that all games are here in Strathmore. Kind of makes for a nice little hockey wind-up weekend.

And, here’s the second video in the 30 day video challenge. It’s a vlog of yesterday’s hockey-centric activities.

 

It’s a 30 Day YouTube Challenge!

30 Day Challenge titile

It’s a personal challenge. In an effort to do more of what I really enjoy doing, but somehow don’t seem to prioritize and never seem to get around to. Isn’t it a shame that so many of the things we love to do in life are often things we rarely do? Fishing, hiking, a day at the spa for those who are into such things? Well, in effort to do more of what I love doing, I’m going to shoot, edit and upload one video a day to YouTube. I love making videos. I have heaps of ideas of videos I want to shoot, but somehow, just don’t get around to making the videos as much as I would like to.

Enough is enough, personal challenge accepted. It won’t be easy, and I can’t guarantee it will happen flawlessly or that I’ll even end up getting more than 75% of the 30 videos made. But, I’m pretty sure that by at least trying to take this challenge, I will have made more videos that if I don’t. And that’s kinda the whole point.

Stay Tuned.