Monday, June 6, 2011

In a rut

I've been in a bit of rut when it comes to updating the blog. My days are filled with the same tasks and chores. Ranch life is so seasonally repetitive, sometimes it is hard to find something to write about that is interesting, inspiring or educational. What was I doing this time last year? Writing about pigs, chickens, garden work, wildflowers, moving cattle, ranch visitors.


I could write about the lovely Indian paintbrush that was in bloom last week. Or the one white lupine in a sea of purple. Or how the poppies in the yard just started to bloom and how much I love their intense orange color and crepe petals. Or about how the lilacs are in full swing and about how that delicate floral scent is so welcome. Or maybe I write about how we finally took out the dead side of the apple tree and now there is so much light in the flower bed.


I could write about how much the pigs have grown in the last month or so. Or how they still manage to escape their pen. Or how I need to improvise a wallow for them so they can cool off in the summer heat. About how they splash water from their trough and wallow around in the mud, making themselves and the whole pen smell like anaerobic decay. I could write about how fussy I am about the pig pen looking and smelling nice for when we have guests. About how unrealistic that is and that a pig pen smells like a pig pen not a rose garden.


I could write about my frustrations with planting the garden. How the soil crusts over and the seeds can't poke through the dirt. Or how I can never get the rows to run properly downhill when we flood irrigate. Or how there is already a pocket gopher hole in the very middle of both potato rows even though the garden has just been planted.


I could write about how we moved the cattle around the house to mow down the grass and eliminate potential fire fuels. Or about how Nathan went to all the work to dig one of the cattle guards that silted in with all the winter storms and the cattle just jump over it anyway. I could write about chasing the escapees out of the alfalfa and running them back through the gate into the pasture only to have the rest of the contained herd barrel out the gate once it was opened. I could write about our two late season calves. I could write about the cow we ran through the chute yesterday and about how when she shed her winter coat on her bag, some hairs wrapped around one of her teats. How relieved she must have been when we cut it off and how I hope she doesn't lose that tit. Or I could write about the bulls headbutting each other until they crashed through the fence on the way home from the York place. Or how we still haven't had a chance to fix up the fence. I could write about moving the herd and leaving False M behind and yet she always knows exactly where we went and shows up a few hours later at her own arthritic pace.

I could write about the abundance of wildlife we have seen at the ranch the spring. About the chukar that moved into the rim rock around the house. Or the Hungarian partridge that I saw in the pig pasture cleaning up leftover grain. I could write about several wild turkey sightings including a hen near the old apple tree. She must have a nest nearby. We've seen plenty of deer and elk, barbary sheep even stories of an antelope napping in the road. I could write about the return of the cliff swallows this week and how they are busily building their mud-jug nests.


I could write about our flock of chickens. The creative places they stash their eggs. Our ongoing war with egg eating hens. About how this winter the dog learned to filch eggs from the nests and bury them for later. How unpleasant it is to find one of these buried treasures with a hoe in the garden. I could write about how Freda the turkey has a sinus infection and how I scrambled around to find some medicine, any medicine that would help her. About how worried I was that she would die. I could write about Pa-Pa the peacock and how he strutted, shimmied and fanned his tail for every hen that walked by yesterday and how he also dances for quail and a yellow feed bucket and for nobody in particular. About how much I love his calls and even though he roosts on Lloyd's porch and poops everywhere, I think Lloyd enjoys him too. About how the chickens and turkey have taken to dusting in the flower bed in front of his sunroom window. About how I don't think he cares for that much. I could write about our new techniques for raising pastured poultry this year or about the hoop house we built with the help of several weekend's worth of ranch guests.

If only I could find something to write about...


Anonymous said...

I love your dull, tedious and repetitious days.

Katia said...

Thank goodness because I have so many of them I will never run out of something to write about. Whether or not it is interesting is something else entirely!

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