Tag Archives: ranchlife
Working dogs are essential to our way of life. Unfortunately, we lost one of our girls this winter and another needs to be retired soon. It’s not easy for us or the dog when it’s time for them to slow down or retire. The dog’s live to work, their greatest joy is just going. We usually end up spending more time with our dogs than we do any other person or animal. Our dogs are more than pets, they are our coworkers, our protectors, our companions and a part of our family.
We often joke that a good cowdog is worth two good cowboys or one cowgirl!
We’ve known it was time for another pup for a while. I’ve been looking for the perfect pup to replace my Dad’s soon to be retired dog, Ranchie, for about a year. I paraded adorable puppy picture after puppy picture in front of my Dad, hoping he would be interested in one. My Aunt even brought one of her red queensland pups over around Christmastime, but to no avail. My Dad had a specific pup in mind, and after a year I finally found her.
My friend, Mindi, has a dog named Lady, that looks an awful lot like my Dad’s dog, Ranchie. I asked Mindi if she knew of anyone that had some good working pups, that looked like Lady, looking for homes. As fate would have it she did, and I immediately sent an e-mail inquiring about female pups. Mindi’s neighbor, June, e-mailed me right back. Turned out she had one female kelpie pup left. Fate. She sent me a picture of the pup. I walked over to my Dad’s house and flashed him the picture of the cutest little kelpie pup, I’d ever seen. Dad agreed. I found his new dog.
A few weeks after that I was able to pick the pup up for my Dad. It had been decided that I would care for and socialize the pup until she was old enough to start working. We generally start working dogs at a year. That means I am looking at a good six months of puppy sitting full time and another six of part time puppy sitting, only to turn her over to my Dad.
The great thing is, I work with my Dad so I’ll still see her and work with her everyday! But usually after a few months of working full time with my Dad a dog’s allegiance changes. You see these cowdogs are bred and born work, and they love and respect whoever the work with the most, in this case it will be my Dad.
I’ve had this dog for a little over a month now, I spend a lot of time with her. I have to say, I am impressed with this dog and am seriously considering not giving her up. The force is strong with this one.
Of course, I’ll give Boo to my Dad when she is ready. I still have a few good years left with my dog, Hoot, and I can tell how excited and proud he already is of Boo. I know how hard it is to watch a dog you love and depend on grow old and retire and am deeply pleased to be able to mitigate that for my Dad a whisper. I know Boo is the beginning of a long line of excellent Brown Ranch cattledogs.
My Mom made me these sandwiches this past summer to take with me to the summer ranch. You see, my Dad is notorious for making us work all day, by his side, then when it comes to dinner, he expects us to cook it for everyone. My Mom did her best to mitigate this for me by sending casseroles, sandwiches and other lovely and delicious pre-cooked food so I wouldn’t flip out when my Dad expected me to cook for the camp after doing the same work he did.
This is one of the recipes I asked her to make again and again, because it was really easy and sooooooo gooooood. She assembled everything for me, I took it with me to the summer ranch, and popped it in the oven when we got hungry.
1 package of Kings Hawaiian rolls
1 lb deli ham (thin sliced)
1 lb havarti cheese, thinly sliced
1/2 cup butter, melted
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons mustard
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Dash of onion soup mix
Slice the rolls in half, place in a 9x 13 dish. Fold the ham and cheese and place on top of your sliced rolls. Cover with the top half of your rolls.
Mix the sugar, butter, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and soup mix together until smooth. Cover your sandwiches with that awesome sauce.
Cover tightly, refrigerate, and let marinade anywhere from 4-24 hours.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until they are crispy and melty to your liking. Enjoy!
P.S. You can also use turkey and swiss, beef and cheddar, I mean, go crazy!
I am excited about this. My friend Brian Drake is doing a Horsemanship Clinic. And guess what? He’s gonna use Sue horse! I am super exited about this and I urge you to attend if you have any interest. I’ve had the privilege to ride with Brian, and it was a life altering experience. Seriously, do it!
Over the past few months I have started working a lot more on the Ranch, in addition to my fulltime town job and my blog and writing. I am exhausted. Working on the Ranch is physically exhausting and working in town is mentally exhausting, I need a nap. All this work has started to affect how I feel and interact with the world. I miss my friends, I miss having a life, I miss cooking and having free time
That being said, I’ve got some pretty big news for you all. I’ve given my notice at my town job and will soon be working for my Parents fulltime. To say I’m freaking out would be a slight understatement. I loved my town job so very much. It taught me so many skills that have benefited both the Ranch and my own life. But since I’ve been working fulltime on both the ranch and in the office, I’ve realized I am spread too thin and something had to give.
Since my legacy and passion is the Ranch, I decided that it was time to return to it. It was a hard decision to make. I have become accustomed to a certain lifestyle, one where I can buy myself new boots, take myself to a fancy dinner if I feel like it or spend a fortune at the plant and flower store. Needless to say that time is ending. Since I will not have a steady income anymore, I will continue to freelance write, probably substitute teach in the winter and hopefully pick up a few part-time, odd jobs (I cook, I clean, kids love me, I drive tractors!).
My ultimate goal is in addition to my grass fed beef is to start raising heritage pastured pigs, quail for eggs and chickens for eggs. Hopefully I can start a CSA or some type of program like that and find financial independence there. I would also love to become more involved with my community. I will finally have the time and the professional demeanor (skills I learned in the law office!) to become involved with local politics and boards (I’m looking at you Fair Boards and Ca Beef Council).
I will greatly miss my boss, my co-workers and the community I work in and around. I loved getting dressed up for work, it was a change to put on a dress, make-up and do my hair, every day. On the Ranch the cows could care less what I look like or what I wear. In a way, I am completely doing an 180, from a fancy, salaried, air conditioned, classy, 9 to 5, office, to dirt, blood, sunshine and freedom. Know what? I couldn’t be happier! I’m going to be living the dream!