Not-so-wordless Wednesday – Ag Book of the Day 3

Since it’s Reading Month at the school, I figured that it wouldn’t serve my purpose very well to go wordless today. But I am featuring a book that doesn’t have a LOT of words to it. It’s one of George’s favorites, and it is:

Large Slide and Find Trucks: Large Slide and Find Trucks

“Trucks” by Priddy Books. It’s a board book, with slide and find panels. And it’s GREAT! Most board books/lift-the-flap/slide-panels don’t last in our house. They are usually destroyed very quickly by little hands that aren’t careful, patient, etc. Not this one.

George can look at this book for HOURS and I do mean hours. It covers colors, different types of transportation, different kind of workers (not just farmers, although there are definitely tractors in it!). Again, it’s just another great book.

Today at school it was Bandana Day, “wrap up with a good book.” Big Bro was excited to wear a bandana to school. Scooter decided that he was to old for that stuff (which is totally unlike him). Oh well, to each their own.

There it is…my book of the day. But in keeping with the Wordless Wednesday theme, here’s some of my favorite George shots. Enjoy!

Don't mind my dirty face, I'm still cute!

Smile!

Look into my eyes...

Boxes aren't the only cheap toy!

Guess who will be 2 soon?

You might not be able to put Baby in a corner, but you can put George in a bucket!

Yeah, they call me Grace

Uh oh. I think I’ve really done a number now. Yeah, I went almost all winter without a problem. In fact, I think the last time I saw a doctor was my check-up after George was born. But I’m guessing I’ll be heading in soon.

I can’t lift my left arm. As in, it hurts to put on my jacket. Lifting George is almost impossible. Typing is OK, but only because I use my fingers, and don’t move my arm.

You see, it’s winter here in North Dakota. And with winter comes snow…and ice. With ice comes quick trips to meet the ground. But the problem was that I didn’t let myself fall gracefully. Nope, I had to go “Val” it up and make it painful. I somehow jammed my shoulder. The silver lining? It’s my left arm, not my right. (You see? There’s a silver lining in EVERY situation, you just have to look a little harder sometimes.)

I’m guessing I have some tears in there. I’m guessing it’ll be a bit before it feels better. And I’m guessing that this is going to be a long spring.

Maybe, if I’m lucky enough, I’ll fall again and knock it back to normal? Hey, a gal can dream, can’t she?

It’s time to go out again and check cows. My wishes are that 1) #70 hasn’t calved and I can actually get her to the barn this time, 2) if I DO fall, that I don’t break anything, and 3) it’s 70 degrees outside. (Hey, as long as I’m wishing here, I might as well throw in one big one, just to make the others seem more plausible.)

Good night! And if I don’t wave to you tomorrow, it’s not because I don’t want to, it’s because I can’t! 😉

Post of destruction

I’m not sure that words are necessary…so just watch the slide show.

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I didn’t take the picture of the Game and Fish official who stopped and had picked up a pick-up load of the carcasses. (He did give me permission to take a photo.) These were just the ones left behind, or the ones not picked up yet. It makes me sad, frustrated and wondering.

To quote the Game and Fish website, the department’s mission statement is:

“The mission of the North Dakota Game and Fish Department is to protect, conserve and enhance fish and wildlife populations and their habitat for sustained public consumptive and appreciative use.”

Well, they’re failing.

Ever increasing problem

We have a “small” problem on our farm. I call it a small problem, because the animals themselves aren’t all that large, but the number in which they are here…that’s where the issue lies.

Last year it started as a nuisance. I warned Boss Man that I thought the deer around our house seemed to be getting closer and closer, and seemed to bring their extended families with them. At first, he kind of brushed off my concerns, saying that they had never really bothered the hay before and that they would probably move on shortly.

They didn’t.

In fact, they seemed to rather enjoy themselves, and made themselves right at home. As you can see here: (Warning, this is the first video I had ever shot, so please excuse the nausea-inducing zooming and movement…I’ve learned…well, at least a little.)

This year is a whole new ballgame. We have already enrolled the help of our state Game and Fish, who have come up with some interesting tactics. (For instance, a really neat gun-looking, bottle-rocket-on-steroids type thing!)

To explain it from my husband’s point of view, I’ll just give you the run-down of a conversation we had:

“It’s a double-edged sword. If they eat my hay, they won’t starve. They’ll be stronger and healthier, but then they’ll also survive winter and there will be more next year.

“If they don’t eat my hay, they’ll starve. But they’ll be weak and more susceptible to disease, exposing my herd to who-knows-what.”

And this is what we’re talking about for this year:

So, you see, we’re in a tough spot. If we don’t feed the deer, they will get sick and die. But may expose our cows to all sorts of unwanted stuff.

If we feed the deer, they won’t leave, and could still get sick and die. And we will still have exposure to whatever it is they are carrying.

We have already spent money on buying panels to place all around our feed, such as the silage that we cut and the freshly-ground hay. Game and Fish suggest that we space our hay stacks closer together, but our insurance insists that our hay stays further apart. I personally don’t believe that where our hay is located would make much difference to this large number of animals.

The amount of money that has been lost through the hay and feed that has been destroyed is almost nauseating. But the danger to the health of our herd is what has us the most concerned. We are doing all we can to protect our livestock, but it would be nice if there was a better system in place to assist producers that come across these issues.

Trust me, this is something that Boss Man and I will be working on.

Living with royalty

Well, it was another busy weekend…which will lead to more busy weekends, but I’m OK with that.

This weekend was our local Applefest. Part of the celebration is a pageant-like activity that is called Lil’ Miss and Mr. Ellendale. It’s open to 5-6 year old’s and is kind of a mixer/social activity that gives local kids a chance to be on a parade float, play some games and bring home a cool lunch box/cooler.

Well, this year’s Lil’ Mr. Ellendale is none other than Scooter! He’s so excited! He can’t believe that he gets to wear a crown, a cape and ride on parade floats. Yeah, he’s even talking about learning cursive so he can sign autographs.

It’s been quite the deal. But as much fun as the weekend was, tomorrow will bring back our regular routine…whatever that is.

And I invite you to check out this great video…of the best 3-year-old mechanic in town. EJ’s calendar is filling up fast, so if you need some work done, you better schedule it soon!

Fish are patient

Big brother was invited to have a sleepover at Grandma B’s house last night, so that he could go fishing with my family today. Scooter was a little peeved about this, so I promised him that we would go fishing this afternoon. Little did I know what it would all take to get there. Here’s the rundown:

$45 – money spent on snacks, drinks, etc.

$11 – money spent on in-state fishing license

25 – number of minutes spent waiting for someone able to sell me a license, since apparently they wouldn’t just let me fill it out myself and leave them the correct money

2 – number of children I took with

3 – number of poles that I took with

1 1/2 – number of worms used…don’t ask about the 1/2

15 – number of minutes spent fishing before I was told it was too cold, they were too tired, they were too hungry, etc., etc.

26 – number of minutes spent on the road, driving to and from the lake

1,376 – number of times I had to recast after both kids reeling in the fishing line as soon as I gave them their rods

1,377 – number of times I told them not to reel in the line as soon as I gave them their rod

Oh well, a good day fishing…you know the rest of the saying. The quote of the evening goes to Scooter, who looked at me after about 27 seconds of fishing and said, “Boy, these fish must have lots of patience.” Yes, my son, they must…and it’s a good thing your mom does too!