Come With Me For A Day At The Homestead

by Texas Homesteader~

I’ve had many people tell me they wonder what a typical day at a Texas ranch might be like.  So last year I published a post detailing a day in our lives here in our NE Texas paradise.  But that was during the heat & drought of summer, a very different kind of day than in the cold of winter.

So I thought it would be fun to let you walk around with us today to see what a day at the ranch is like when it’s c-c-c-cold outside!  C’mon, put on your mud boots, bundle up in your heaviest coveralls, grab your gloves & follow me – it’ll be a blast!

Walk around with us today to see what a day at the homestead is like! Put on your mud boots, grab your gloves & follow me - it'll be a blast! #TexasHomesteader

Well even though winters are pretty temperate this far south we’ve been dealing with some bitter cold lately.  It seems every winter we get at least one batch of ice & snow and this winter has been no different.  We also got a couple of rain/sleet showers earlier in the week. So not only is it cold but it’s also good & muddy outside.  This morning a reinforcing cold front came barreling through on top of the cold front that was already here. That brought even colder temps & blustery bone-chilling winds up to 30 MPH to bring that wind child way, way down.  Now remember what we learned before?  What does weather like this mean, kids?  That’s riiiight…  newborn CALF time! (unspoken ranch law apparently)

This heifer wasn’t due to throw her first calf until next week. But since we’ve got inclement weather today, well due to unspoken rancher’s law, today it is!  This unexpected calf surprise changes the work schedule right off the bat.  So we bundle up in our insulated coveralls, mud boots, heavy gloves & ear muffs. RancherMan & I just about did the back-stroke across the swampy pastures all the way to the far side of the east pasture to check on things.  Looks like the calf is fine but mama is still passing quite a bit of afterbirth. That’s  not unusual but we’ll keep an eye on her for a few days.

New baby calf. Walk around with us today to see what a day at the homestead is like! Put on your mud boots, grab your gloves & follow me - it'll be a blast! #TexasHomesteader

After we got the calf checked over and attached her official ear bling we raced back to the house to warm up a bit.  Bbbbrrrrrr it’s so cold out there. That the icy wind will suck the air right out of your lungs.  My cheeks stung and my hands burned as they began to slowly warm. I really don’t deal well with the cold!  But the warm-up didn’t last long…

You see, we recently sold our bull yearling and we need to get him tested per Texas Animal Health Commission regulations. We also want to run a fertility test on him while we’re there so we can assure the new buyer he’s getting a clean, quality breeder.  The forecast has rain, snow, sleet and more rain in the foreseeable future. So we need to take this tiny window of opportunity & get this boy loaded up and hauled to the vet for his day-o-fun.

But the temps are still in the 20’s and the trailer hookups on the truck are frozen into a solid sheet of ice.  RancherMan had to get a hatchet & gingerly break the ice around the hitch to expose it. And then he had to thaw the brake outlet so that we could plug in the electronics. But at last that was complete. Thankfully we were able to get the trailer hooked up & backed to the chute without sinking too deep in mud.

We also have an A.I. job scheduled for a nearby rancher soon, So we’ll need meds to sync the rancher’s heifers for a hopefully successful breeding session.  Since those meds have to be purchased at a vet’s office we asked about their availability.  The vet arranged to get the meds for us so we can pick them up while we’re there with this bull.  Multi-tasking – the true country way of life!  We finally get the bull to the vet, the tests run, the meds for our A.I. job picked up & soon we’re speeding back home.

It’s mid to late afternoon by the time we get home & there’s not going to be much daylight left today so we need to hurry & get some hay out to refill all the hay rings.  This cold, wet, blustery weather means we’ll need to keep the cattle well fed so they can keep their energy levels up. And like I said earlier, there’s MORE NASTINESS COMING!

So once again we don our heavy insulated coveralls, leather gloves, mud boots & ear muffs to brave that cold wind.  Of course the tractor bogs down with the weight of these still-frozen bales in the wet cold mud. But ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

Now that the calf has been tended to, the bull has been tested, meds have been obtained for a future job and all the cattle have been fed, it’s (THANKFULLY) time to do some work inside.  I must enter the new calf’s information in our database, noting dam & sire information, birth date, identifying information, photograph, etc.  Baily’s none too pleased that my laptop’s taking up HER rightful place in my lap…  LOL.  Patience little girl, patience.

Thankfully as busy as it’s been today, supper tonight will be a snap. Y’all know I love the Cook-Once, Eat-Twice method of cooking! I’ve got Salisbury steaks already made up in the fridge and some leftover gravy to ladle on top of them.  I’ll just whip up a couple of sides and a hot supper will be ready quickly and with little effort.  After we eat, my handsome RancherMan builds a fire to finally completely warm this tired body of mine.

Fire in cast iron fireplace. Walk around with us today to see what a day at the homestead is like! Put on your mud boots, grab your gloves & follow me - it'll be a blast! #TexasHomesteader

It’s been a cold one today and when you’re a rancher that inclement weather actually means you’re out in the weather more, You don’t get to stay inside.  Let me tell ya, we earned our keep today that’s for sure!  But that’s ok, I love this life we live.  The work we’ve done today has been meaningful to us – work that speaks to our hearts.  You can’t ask for more than that!

I hope you’ve enjoyed spending the day with us here at the ranch.  Y’all come back now, ya hear??


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17 thoughts on “Come With Me For A Day At The Homestead

  1. Dee

    We’re city folk, so I think a glimpse into your day is truly fascinating. I love that calf, too! Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday. 🙂

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I was always fascinated about my grandmother’s life. She lived through the great depression and years later after she retired she lived a very quiet unassuming life in the county. The things she did were just normal to her even into her later years – growing and preserving a large garden, hanging her clothes on the line to dry, cooking simple (yet DELICIOUS) meals from scratch. I try to follow in her footsteps the best I can but oh to be half the woman she was! ~TxH~

  2. Sue Mosier

    Hi Tammy,
    My husband and I live in Virginia. We used to live in Denton, Tx. When my husband retires we are looking at South Carolina or east of Denton. Is there anything you do not like living where you are? I remember when living in Denton how little rain we received in the summer. Thank you, Sue

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I’ve lived in the NE Texas area almost all my life Sue so I don’t have a lot to compare to, but I’ve also never considered moving to a different location – I love it that much! The summers are hot & dry, but the winters are (relatively) mild and short lived here. I’m not a big fan of the cold. This part of NE Texas speaks to my heart and it’s the only place I want to live. ~TxH~

      1. Sue Mosier

        Thank you very much, Tammy.

  3. Margy

    There’s nothing like a fire to end the day. Sometimes I hate to see summer come because it is too warm for evening fires. But summer has other rewards. – Margy

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I hear ya Margy, each season has its own reward. The fire certainly helped comfort the chill from this day. ~TxH~

  4. Stephanie

    I so love hearing about the farm. I live and breathe by the farm. It’s in my blood and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else! It’s so fun hearing what’s going on in other’s farms too. Thanks for sharing! I can not wait for the day my hubby can be home farming full time, but I’m thankful I’m able to be here full time! Theres always something going on the farm, its so exciting!!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I agree Stephanie, there’s no place I’d rather be either. It’s a lifestyle not understood by all, but it’s absolute bliss to us. ~TxH~

  5. Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti

    I admire all the hard work and dedication ranchers put into caring for and maintaining their animals. I’m glad their are people like you who do this valuable job!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      What kind words Pat – thank you! (but the truth is I love it & won’t have it any other way. shhhhh…. 😉 ~TxH~

  6. Connie Sartain

    Thanks for the tour today. I don’t envy you your cold weather ‘have to’s’ but you are so right about tending your heart while you tend your chores. We are just a small organic farm and a show, tour,learning garden so we get to spend our old bones time indoors during the winter doing everything we’re too tired to do in the summer. No livestock here though I long for chickens again. Then I remember thawing their water all winter and I just buy my eggs from a neighbor! She is younger than I ! We do some rescue dog work but only in the nice weather. Biggest question I get is……. ” how can you stay home all the time? Don’t you get bored? Some things are just too hard to explain. Thanks for your posts and recipes and beautiful cow baby pictures.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      “Don’t you get bored?” Yeah, we’ve gotten that one before too, as well as “If both of you are together all day, won’t you get sick of each other”. Some things really are too hard to explain. LOL ~TxH~

  7. ColleenB.

    Come rain and shine; sleet and snow, there’s always work on the farm to bestow.
    Pouring down rain here but must say, your fire sure does look nice and cozy

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Oh yeah Colleen, nothing like a blazing fire to finally be able to get cozy warm on a blustery cold day. 🙂 ~TxH~

  8. Terry

    Ranch life is very difficult at times and the weather certainly doesn’t help. Nice to have the big fire at the end of the day.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      You’re so right there Terry. But I absolutely love this life we live, weather woes & all. This morning I’m listening to the radio droning on about how bad the wrecks are along my previous commute, and I praise God I’ve been able to make this leap into a life that touches my heart. ~TxH~


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