Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Funny Thing Happened....

***WARNING*** Imagination required, because my pictures stink!

That's not the funny thing that happened, it's funny but not what I was referring to. It's Spirit Week at Guffey Community Charter School. Today's theme was Flash from the Past, she was to wear a fashion from a bygone decade. Since I am up on today's fashion, it only makes sense that my closet would be full of hip relics. She wanted a white, 'Saturday Night Fever' suit but it must be at the cleaners, I couldn't find it anywhere. She had to make do with improvised hippie threads. The moccasins are all mine, if you snicker I might slap ya. (Don't worry, I'm non-violent, it was an empty threat.)

On to the funny....

Shelly and I took the steer to Fowler to be processed today. This steer has been a thorn in my side since he strutted into the sale ring. For starters he was 1400 pounds when the boss lady threw up her number to bid on him. I have no need for a 1400 pound steer. He was corn fed too. I'm trying to develop a natural/organic, grass fed beef program. When he arrived, I took one look in the trailer and then went and flushed a handful of Benjamins down the crapper. Okay, not really but that's what it felt like. One day after putting him in green pasture at Phoenix Ranch, the booger jumped the fence and Shelly spent hours and another C note in fuel looking for him. The last couple of months he hasn't been a huge problem other than he's been eating grass that some other steer could have been eating. Since we are all out of steak Shelly decided to go ahead and have him put in pretty little packages. I thought it was a rotten idea. I don't sell corn fed beef and I certainly don't want to eat corn fed beef but I was outvoted. So I called and got him a date with the reaper. A week before his schedule date I called the Brand Inspector in order to get the correct paperwork. The Brand Inspector for our region, referred me to another and instructed me to call the evening before we left. That made my forehead wrinkle but I agreed and went on with my day. Two days before I was working at getting my ducks huddled and try as I might, I could not find any paperwork on the steer. After some research I found out that the bill of sale had been tossed in the trash by someone named, "Idontknow." So I called both Brand Inspectors to tell them of my predicament. Long story, but the steer did not keep his original date at the butcher. Instead he got a date for this morning. Still not the funny part.

Do you know where Toys R Us used to be in Pueblo? If ya don't, don't fret. It's not part of the punchline. It's near the P Town Mall and a relatively busy intersection, just off of Hwy 50. As Shelly and were rolling down the road,passing the old Toys R Us store, chatting about some life altering event (I always chat about life altering events), Shelly suddenly says, "Oh we lost a tire."

Lost a tire?

"Yep," She says. "It's rolling down the highway."

I look in the mirror and see several cars avoiding the tire behind us. Yikes. Shelly pulls off the road and I get to see what I can do about our situation. I look behind the trailer at the traffic and can't see the tire. I look at Shelly and she points to the intersection in front of us. I see the tire rolling through the intersection. It rolls about 25 feet past the stoplight, up the curb and then loses momentum and flops over.

The point at which the tire was returned to the truck!

I run and to retrieve the tire. As I get the tire upright and prepare to return to the truck, I see that Shelly has driven off, taken a turn and left me with a hunk of rubber on the side of Hwy 50, Pueblo CO. Soon enough she pulls around, we load the tire and are off again.

What we don't understand is, how the tire stayed upright and rolled. It fell out from beneath of Tom Truck. I would assume that the bumper pull trailer would have bumped it and ran it over but no so...it even passed us. I'm thankful the the light was green and the tire was able to go with traffic instead of causing and accident. The things that happen. It certainly made me giggle.

Back safe in the truck!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Deep Fried Deviled Eggs

Nothing extraordinary going on. Jolene and I are going to the fire station for a birthday celebration. We need to provide a side dish. Generally we take something boring and everyday like green bean casserole. Shelly likes boring and everyday, Jolene and I not so much.

Jolene and I decided on Deep Fried Deviled Eggs. Shelly LOVES deviled eggs, Jolene really likes the goopy yolk filling, and I hate making them. Of course, I use the eggs that we harvest from the hens. Sometimes fresh eggs don't come out of the shell easily after being boiled. I like pretty deviled eggs, not crater filled deviled eggs.

I have found a method that works for 10 of a dozen eggs. I bring my water to a rolling boil and gently place my eggs inside. I make sure my eggs are room temperature. If I take them right out of the fridge, peeling them will be a disaster. I let the water come back to a hard boil and leave the eggs in it for 3-4 minutes, COVERED! When my timer beeps, I simply shut off the burner and leave the eggs COVERED in the pot for 10 - 12 minutes. No peeking, don't lift the lid or all will be ruined. After letting the residual steam and heat cook the eggs, I place them into an ice bath for a couple of minutes and then start peeling.

After I make deviled eggs the usual way, I dredge them through some seasoned flour, dip them in a couple of beaten eggs and then slide them through breadcrumbs. I fry three or four at a time in my ultra healthy deep fryer at 350 degrees for a couple of minutes. Viola! Fried Deviled Eggs.
Hopefully they will all be eaten the birthday bash, as I really I'm fairly certain they aren't the best for my heart.

I was really busy this morning replacing the door handle on the sliding glass door upstairs. I must have superhuman strength because I break that handle off a lot. I went for a change in color this time. I don't know if it matches the decor but change is good.

Jolene spent a good part of Saturday afternoon running around the ranch with her dog Tara. I'm not sure how long she spent picking out her outfit for the day, but by the looks of it not long.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Twilight Zone

Mama Ewe

I'm sure stranger things have happened, I guess I'm just hanging around the ranch too much!

Guess what this item is!

Yesterday Dr. Hill paid a visit to Rolling Thunder to test some new sheep. While she was chitchatting at the barn door, she noticed Mama Ewe limping around. It's not an uncommon thing to see Mama Ewe limping around. She's notorious for overgrown hooves. Trim them Monday, and they need it again on Sunday. An overgrown pedicure was not the problem. As the investigation continued, Shelly discovered that poor Mama Ewe's foot had sloughed off! Her foot! I'm not kidding. We aren't sure why this happened, frostbite is the primary suspect. Sheep are funny things. We've had some that take a nap in the sunshine and wake up in the shade and for some reason decide they have no desire to continue on, so they simply die. I've often heard, and I repeat it frequently that, 'Sheep are born looking for a place to die.' Mama Ewe is on the opposite end of the sheep vitality spectrum. She's been trapped behind hay bales, left out in the snow, had baby after baby even though she's ancient, been bitten and run over by dogs, and now it seems is an amputee. She still thrives. She is adjusting well to her stub although it seems sensitive. She continues to nurse her lamb and hobbles to the gate for her daily peppermint. She was scheduled for retirement last year but somehow ended up keeping Nubie the Ram occupied, hence the lamb. Nubie will have to learn to get along with some other ewe or wether as Mama Ewe is officially retired. I've promised extra beet pulp and peppermints as disability pay.

Stump GirlMama Ewe and Baby

Other strange things have occurred. The child started 6th grade. She refused my offer for a new dress for the first day of school. How odd! She actually lost a wager and refused to pay up by wearing a dress and curling her hair for the first day of school. I told her not to worry, I will get even! She did surprise me with some obscure factoid, of which I don't even remember now! It was so unlike her but I was able ask with a snicker if she was regurgitating useless information. I'm accused of doing so often.

1st day of school

The cows are still holding on to babies. I'm assuming the vet was wrong when she preg checked Jenny as Jenny's due date was the 1st of August. Jersey was due on the 23rd of August and Brownie not until September 3rd. In the meantime, my neighbor Brenda is keeping me and a few select friends in milk. I've just swallowed my third afternoon glass. I'm trying to be patient with the bovine but I LOVE milk so much.
The chickens are still in peak production. We continue to have problems with skunks, in fact I'm missing two bronze turkey poults. The hens run amok during the day and genuinely seem happy. We may start seeing chicks in about a week. Jolene candled eggs for the second time this summer and the broody girls are still busy sitting. We have 12 chicks in the brood stall from the last hatch.
Russell Crow and few girls!

The goats are busy landscaping. I'm afraid most of the larger goats are pregnant. Pregnant goats are good and bad. Good point--milk, milk and milk. Bad--Babies are SOOO Cute and I can't have anymore goats!

The Nigerian Dwarf Goats are lovely as ever. Gaston has been singing and singing and singing. We did allow him an afternoon date with Pokey, so we may have little, little ones coming too!

The Nigerians have completed their Bonsai Tree in the backyard too. At least until one of them gets a step stool or grows taller so that they might be able to reach the green!

Otherwise, life on the rancho is normal busy.