The Sacramento Bee, Twitter and Red Wattle Hogs

It’s no secret that this ranch girl has embraced social media like my life depended on it. Some might call it a hobby, my Parent’s call it an addiction, I think it’s a necessity in this day in age. Recently, my social media persona and “real” life has collided in some big ways. The result has been some rather amazing and interesting opportunities.

The catalyst for this recent wave of attention was an article by Edward Ortiz in the Sacramento Bee. Randy Pench contributed beautiful photos and awesome video that accompanied the online version.  But first let’s back up just a whisper shall we?

The screen shot!

The screen shot!

Mr. Ortiz started following me on twitter sometime back. Of course, I followed back because I get all kinds of excited when journalists, teachers, and/or people I lurk follow me. These are the people I learn from, these are also the people I want to learn from me. I respect their thoughts and opinions and I know others do too.

Mr. Ortiz emailed me last fall and wanted to talk about my hogs. Since my falls, springs and summers are generally my busiest times, I had to wait until January to have him and Mr. Pench out to see the ranch and hogs. Winter is the time I get to dedicate to my hogs and opening this ranch’s barn doors.

My Dad couldn't stand it and had to be apart of the interview.  So I felfie photo bombed.

My Dad couldn’t stand it and had to be apart of the interview. So I felfie photo bombed.

Opening your farm or ranch “barn doors” can be a terrifying thing to people in production agriculture. Unfortunately, we expect to be attacked for what we do. There is just much mis-information being put out by our opponents, we are forced to play a never-winning game of catch up.

I was just a whisper excited.

I was just a whisper excited.

That is why I take such a transparent stand. I want every reasonable person, who has a thirst for knowledge about their food, to come on out. I want them to know what I do, and why I do it. It really is in my best interest. Having a reputable paper like the Sac Bee come out, makes me accessible to more than a ranch day ever could.

If you get the chance my fellow farmers and ranchers, I urge you to reach out to your local media. Follow their facebook and twitter pages, answer their questions if they ask. I’ve had such wonderful and positive experiences interacting with the media, especially with the Sacramento Bee.

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Wordless Wednesday: Fence Building Helpers

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Cold Blue Mountain: NPR, Tiny Desk and World Domination

Cold Blue Mountain by Michelle Camy

Cold Blue Mountain by Michelle Camy

Do you remember last summer when I posted the blog about my friends in the band Cold Blue Mountain? When they made a video and let me cook AND be in it?

So.much.fun. Beef, beer and bikinis!

So.much.fun. Beef, beer and bikinis!

They did it again! You see NPR is having a contest – the winner gets to play in the NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert Series, so CBM took the plunge and entered! Guess what?

NPR even tweeted at Cold Blue Mountain, it was pretty exciting.

NPR even tweeted at Cold Blue Mountain, it was pretty exciting.

They were the first metal entry and actually made it on NPR’s music page! Talk about fame! I mean, I know I am super bias, but I think they should win (if they do win, I am so leaving the ranch to go with them I can watch! (they don’t know that yet, so shhhhhhh)).

The Tiny Desk video:

Even if they don’t win, they are still doing some pretty exciting stuff! They are about to embark on huge tour! They are leaving the safe and warm embrace of Chico, California to share their musical talents with most of the United States. I am so excited for them, but kinda bummed that they are going to be gone so long! I’m going to be lonely.

If you get the chance, I recommend you catch a show! Or at least go hang out with them. Despite this being pretty heavy screaming music, these are pretty much some of the nicest guys ever. Plus I worry about them and will need updates to make sure they are doing well, washing their socks, underwear and beards.

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Throwback Thursday: The Browns

"Sammie Hazel Samuel & Fletcher Brown

“Sammie Hazel Samuel & Fletcher Brown

I’m excited about this Throwback Thursday. It’s one of the few photo’s that have names on the back and comes from my direct line of relatives. This is Sammie Jr.,  Hazel, Samuel and Fletcher Brown. My Great Uncle, Great Grandparents and Grandfather, respectively. They are standing in front of the family home on Stampfli Lane in Indian Valley. I would say this photo was probably taken in the late 1930’s or early 1940’s, based on Sammie Jr.’s age here.

Look at the beautiful penmanship!

Look at the beautiful penmanship on the back of the photo!

After my Grandfather’s death, we briefly lived in this home for a few summers. I can safely tell you it was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life. Between the family history and the varmints living in it, I screamed like a girl often. In addition to that, the water was from a hand-dug well – so it smelled like sulfur and turned my hair and nails red if I showered in it. I either had to bribe neighbors with food or go down to the campground to find a decent shower where I would actually smell better after.

The Brown Family Home today. The window on the left is the background from the top photo.

The Brown Family Home today. The window on the right is the background from the top photo.

Sadly, everyone in this photo has died. I was lucky enough to know my Grandfather and my Dad does have memories of his Grandparents, so stay tuned for some future blogs about them.  This whole family is buried at Memorial Park Cemetery, Oroville, Butte County, CA, 5646 Lincoln Blvd, CA 95966.

  • Hazel (Lucas) Brown     born Feb 2 1890       died May 18 1967     
  • Samuel F. Brown            born Mar 14 1883    died Oct 21 1960             
  • Samuel F. Brown            born Sep 3 1926       died Aug 21 1954
  • Fletcher Lucas Brown    born 1921                  died Nov 9 1995

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Wordless Wednesday: Hog Felfies

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Guest Post: Western Regional Grazing Conference: Grazing for Change

I am ecstatic to share this. I’ve known the Abbey since birth, and her husband, Spencer and I attended Chico State together. The Kingdon’s have been friends with the Brown’s for generations and our ranches also neighbor each other. I have endless happy memories of spending time with this family. They also happen to be cattle people that I deeply respect and learn from often. For these reasons, I can think of no better people to be putting this awesome event on. I’m excited that people like Abbey, Spencer and Maezy are not only continuing their family legacy but improving upon it. I urge you to attend this conference, I know you will learn much.

 ******************************************************

JoinUs.GrowMore.

Join us for the first Western Regional Grazing Conference: Grazing for Change on February 27 and 28, 2015 at the Chico State University College of Agriculture Farm Pavilion.

The Jefferson Center for Holistic Management is owned and operated by the Smiths: Spencer, Abbey and Maezy Rae

The Jefferson Center for Holistic Management is owned and operated by the Smiths: Spencer, Abbey and Maezy Rae

Farmers and ranchers face enormous challenges today: from the drought conditions in the Western US to rising costs of production, regulations, family succession hurdles and feed availability for livestock. As livestock producers, we seek lasting solutions to these issues—as do our neighbors throughout California, Oregon, Idaho and Nevada.

Allan Savory will be speaking at the Grazing for Change Conference

Allan Savory will be speaking at the Grazing for Change Conference

We need a way to increase production of the land we have instead of seeking more production ground, which puts us deeper in debt. We need a way for families to plan together for generations so ranches and farms remain ranches and farms. We need rich, fertile soil to lessen our dependence on highly-coveted irrigation water and make the most of the rainfall and moisture we receive in the arid West. We need rivers to run, soil to stay and communities to grow.

Dr. Christine Jones will be speaking at the Grazing for Change Conference

Dr. Christine Jones will be speaking at the Grazing for Change Conference

We call this regenerative agriculture and holistic management makes it possible. We are excited to report that our conference caught the attention of the international community; however, we do not want our local producers to miss this great opportunity to learn from some of the world’s most respected farmers.
Enter the promotional code Local2015 when registering to receive 15 percent off now through January 15.

Here is a sneak peek of the topics covered by the leaders of regenerative agriculture at Grazing for Change. This is just a taste of the great content and conversation provided by the conference. Speaking of taste—experience the North State terroir with lunch provided by local caterers, Bacios, meat donated by Llano Seco and Belcampo and greens grown locally especially for this event. Engage in conversation with the speakers, meet leading authors covering the topics of regenerative agriculture, soil cultivation, holistic management and more, and make new friends in fellow attendees during a social hour on Saturday afternoon. Enjoy the local food scene with Chico’s finest microbrewery beer, wine, cheese and sausages.

The effects of holistic management in the Karoo, South Africa.

The effects of holistic management in the Karoo, South Africa.

Grazing in Nature’s Image, the role of Holistic Management (HM);
Mr. Allan Savory, President and Co-Founder of the Savory Institute

An Australian perspective on managing rangelands for drought: what you can do to improve your water holding capacity on-farm.
Dr. Christine Jones, Australian Grasslands Ecologist and Soil Scientist. Co-Founder Amazing Carbon Project.

How to run more livestock on public land; Mr. Tony Malmberg, Rancher & Consultant for Grasslands, LLC

Regenerating landscapes with cover crop cocktails and planned grazing; applications to California grasslands. Mr. Gabe Brown – Owns and operates a 5,400 acre diversified livestock and cropping operation in Bismark, North Dakota.

Holistic management helps families work together and build profitable ranches.

Holistic management helps families work together and build profitable ranches.

Dig into the principles and practices of holistic management in hands-on workshops, roundtable discussions and talks led by accredited holistic management educators including Allan Savory, Jason Rowntree, Rob Rutherford, Bill Burrows, Dr. Christine Jones, Tony Malmberg and Gabe Brown. Learn more about all our speakers. Spend an extra day with us on the land on a ranch tour, on March 1, led by Chico State professor Dr. Cyndi Daley, Gabe Brown and innovative holistic management practitioners.
Grazing for Change is an essential event for farmers and ranchers seeking new tools and practices to cope with drought, rising costs of production, and pasture availability. Small scale and urban farmers, consumers, students and anyone working to make sustainable decisions in their lives will benefit. Grazing for Change is hosted by Chico State University College of Agriculture, the Jefferson Center for Holistic Management and the Savory Institute.
Register today to save your seat!

 

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Throwback Thursday: March 2, 1952

For this week’s Throwback Thursday, I selected a picture from the Table Mountain Ranch. I thought this picture was interesting because it was taken before the ranch house had it’s additions. Several rooms were added to the original house during the 50’s or 60’s.

Wes Neer, Barbara Johnson, Jody Ann, Sheryl Sarsoli, Sonny Sarsoli, Pat Johnson, Hal Grild March 2, 1952

Wes Neer, Barbara Johnson, Jody Ann, Sheryl Sarsoli, Sonny Sarsoli, Pat Johnson, Hal Grild March 2, 1952

I recognize the last names of several of the people in this photo. The Neer’s and Brown’s are still friends. In fact, Wes Neer is my second cousin, Jenna’s, (or something like that like) Grandfather. If you recall, she is responsible for getting the best pickle recipe ever back in rotation. 

January 2015

January 2015

I love that I have this connection and history to these ranches and these people. It makes me that much more eager to protect my way of life.

 

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Throwback Thursday: July 20, 1947

Hi! Welcome to a new series on The Beef Jar! Throwback Thursday! I’m going to post an old photo and hopefully a story, at least the story I know, to go with it. For my inaugural post, I picked this photo:

In front of the Ranch on Stampfli Lane.

In front of the Ranch on Stampfli Lane.

The writing on the back identified these people and horses:

  • Ernest Learner, Prince
  • Martha Learner, Balu
  • ‘           ‘ Learner, Star
  • Lona Jean Nagler, Balie (Sp?)
  • Barbara Conklin, Star Dust
  • David Vice, Baley
  • Sammie Brown, Dusty
  • Lloyd Goultee (Sp?), Kiluertone (Sp?)
  • Shirley Bolick, Handy
  • Millard Gale, Vern
  • Bill Trull, Popeye

The photo itself was taken on our ranch in Indian Valley. In front of the old ranch house on Stampfli Lane. Sammie Brown was my Great Uncle. He died of polio in 1954, the day my father was born. Look here to see my Dad’s birth announcement in the same paper.  Could you imagine what a week it must have been for my family? I know Sammie was a expert horseman that dedicated a lot of his time to teaching others. I ended up with some of Sammie’s pictures, a school book of his, and his death book from his funeral.

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Wordless Wednesday: December 29, 2014

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Happy Friday

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