Welcome to JKs Rough String Ranch

Welcome to the Rough String, and thanks for stoppin' by!! Grab a hot cup of coffee and sit a spell!
10/22/18 You will see a name change on the blog. Lots of things have changed in my life in the past few years, and I feel compelled to share my story.

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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Back in Training

Well, it couldn't last forever...even though Colt would love to be retired at the ripe ol' age of 3 (coming 4)!! Neither of us have ridden since the What an Awesome Day post on November 14. That's enough time off don't you think?

It usually works this way from Thanksgiving to the New Year; the weather gets bad and I'm busy getting ready for all the celebrations. So, it's really perfect timing...but the New Year is just around the corner and there's lots of stuff we've got to work on. My first cutting competition will probably be in April.

I don't think I ever explained about Colt, so I'll do that soon. But, in a nut shell, I bought him when he was just coming 2 as a reined cow horse prospect; started him under saddle; have done all of his training myself; showed him last year in the 3 year old division at the Harney County Stock Horse Futurity against 9 horses and took 3rd. I'm real proud of him. He's Cal Bar/King Fritz bred.

Anyhow...back to the day...

I knew he would be a lil' fresh, so I brushed him out and warmed him up in the round pen before I even saddled him. He was snortin' like some big stud! LOL...

We've still got patches of snow where the large drifts were, but look at my round pen!! I'm shocked at how dry it is. 6 days ago there was 6 inches of snow on it! One spot had some water, but it's really sandy soil so it wasn't slick.

While I was saddling him, I came to the realization that he's grown!! He's not only a lil' taller but wider too! I had to let out my breast collar a hole on each side. He can stop growing tall any time now. I haven't measured him, but I think he's over 15 hands now. I'm only 5 foot, so he's just right for me at 15 hands.

Think he needs a clip? Cute lil' Mohawk he's got goin'...I'll have to trim him up tomorrow.

So, I got him flexing and bending...soft, soft, soft. Trotted some, loped some, did some turn arounds...it gets pretty boring in the round pen, so I opted to take him out for a ride to the other end of the property.

I had to ride past the arena...and look!!! It's dry enough to ride in too!!! WhoooHoooo!!!

I had to test it out of course!

It was great!!! I still can't believe it's dry enough to ride in after all the snow we had. It probably won't last for long, so I better take advantage of it while I can. When the weather gets bad again, I'll take Colt over to my friend Todd's place and board him for a while. He's got an indoor round pen...it's the closest thing I've got.

Well, Colt did real well for his first day back. Onward we go!!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

So, ya wanna know some scraps 'bout me???

I've been Scrapped!

Well, I've been "Scrapped" by purdy lil' Vaquerogirl at California Cowgirl. Yep, I gotta spill the beans about me...10 tidbits of interest. Well, I don't know how interesting any of this could be, but it's always fun to play blogger games!

1. It's a sad story, I got my first pony for my 6th birthday and she foundered so bad we had to put her down.

2. Then the first horse my mom bought me was a total two-in-one surprise...I came home from school and there was this cute lil' filly! WoW did my eyes get big!

3. I've been married more than once...or twice...But, I've been married for almost 10 years to my best friend and the best, most sincere man on earth. He spoils me rotten and loves doing it! What more could there be?

4. Bling? I hate bling! I'm NOT a bling person. I don't follow fashion...at the Columbia Circuit Finals rodeo I went looking at the booths to find something good to bring home...bling, bling, bling, everywhere I went...blagh!!! I can't wait for the Jordon Valley Big Loop rodeo in May...now that's my kind of shoppin'...rawhide, wool 'n leather. I even wear the same style of Wranglers from 20 years ago. And I like to wear Packers...period.

5. When I was in high school, I worked at the local A & W with my good buddy Rick Dancer as a car hop...change belt and the whole bit...well, not the roller skates. Rick was the cook...love that man!

6. Dancing is my second favorite pastime after horses...two-step, waltz, west-coast swing, east-coast swing, cha cha...love them all...I'd take more ballroom dancing if it were available locally. Dancin's the one time I like to wear high heels and a dress ;~)

7. I love all types of music rock, alternative, country, but my favorite is "Cowboy" music...Ian Tyson, Wylie Gustafson, Dan Roberts, R.W. Hampton, Bren Hill, Red Stegall. I play a lil' bit of guitar and sing a lil' too...but haven't for years...the guitar is in the back of the spare closet.

8. We haven't had TV for over 3 years...we decided we don't have time for it and it's all crap anyhow. We have NetFlix and Sirius radio...love the new "Willie's Place" on Sirius...Honky Tonk 24/7 Yahoo!!! We dance in the kitchen when the mood strikes!

9. I like to bake and cook when I have time...when I don't, and am in a hurry I hate it!

10. My first truck & trailer was a Toyota 5 speed with a 1 horse trailer that was rebuilt (numerous times). I've grown since then...I'm on my 2nd 1 ton and have two trailers; a 4 horse gooseneck stock trailer and a 3 horse with living quarters.

Well there ya be!

Let's see...I get to "Scrap" a few other of my blogger friends. I'm choosin'...

My Pard Tracey at Mustang Diaries

The lovely Lisa at Laughing Orca Ranch

Mr. Ed (pun intended) a fantastic photographer
at Thoughts from the Road

And PrairieRunner Linda, the lady I would truly love to meet at
Just Another Day on the Prairie

So blogger friends...tell me what'cha got!

Sunday Stills

This week's challenge is "What brings you luck". If you want to play next week, visit Sunday Stills and follow along!

I thought the toughest part of this challenge was to answer the question! What does bring me luck? Well, I don't really believe in all the luck or bad luck stuff. So, I don't have a lucky rabbit's foot or horseshoe or hat. After discussing the question with My Man...I figured out that the best thing that has ever happened to me is meeting My Man and marrying him! He's brought me to the happiest time in my life...that's pretty lucky!

Whew! Ok that was on Friday...now I have to photograph him...eek!!! I've never done a portrait...intentionally. The weather has been pretty uncooperative and I opted for an indoor shoot...I'm NO GOOD at this!!! I quit after 50 shots and didn't get anything I liked.

Ok, let's try again this mornin'...the winds blowin' like a son of a gun, but the sun is shining. That shoot turned out just as bad as the indoor shoot...I don't know crap about photography and it's very frustrating...all my reading is for not...sigh.

Well, I picked one photo from the indoor and one from the outdoor shoots...please give me some pointers...signed "in need of a lot of help" ;~)

I liked this one because of the silhouette on the wall behind him.

This one has a lil' bit of an angle to it that made it more interesting.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

A Beautiful White Christmas

I know, I know...many of you are really tired of the white stuff. Recently you've had an overdose of the stuff. But, we had a nice lil' storm blow through last night and give us 4-6 inches of new, powdery stuff...then the sun broke through the clouds about mid morning and the world was right!

Christmas with just My Man and I is a pretty quiet affair. We're up at the usual 6 a.m. and having coffee by the wood stove; this mornin' there's a lil' Baileys in it...Yum! After the first cup, My Man headed out to feed the herd, and I popped the French Toast Casserole in the oven and caught up on some blogs and Dogster.

Then, it's time for presents!! My Man was way too good to me...as usual.

Lets see a couple of books, a Montana Silversmiths belt buckle, a set of western plates for the horse trailer, and the biggie~~~a hackamore and mecate rein (similar to the one in the photo). Well, Dan Fowler is the maker and is really backed up; I won't actually get it until February.

The hackamore in the photo I won with the cutting club last year and was made by Dan...it's the softest, smoothest kangaroo hide. He's a true craftsman with leather braiding. But, I need a larger one (bigger around) to start Colt and show him in. The one I have is for when I ride him in the two rein the following year.
So, I'm really excited to get started on this new phase of his training!!

As we're eating breakfast, here comes the Wild Bunch down the hill for breakfast. Look at the snow on Catnip & Stetson!

It's time to get outside to check out the snow and see what I can find interesting.

Coyote is the first to the fence..."Take my picture!"

Stetson is like a woolly mammoth...him & Catnip have snow
on their backs (and their heads) all the time...their undercoat is really thick.

My Man is playing with his tractor...plowing snow is one of his favorites!

We walked up the hill behind the house...nice horse trail through
the snow heading toward the west hill.

Cindy Sue's in hot pursuit of some Chuckers...she's really
a big dog in a small body!

Cowboy is checking over the edge...he's scaring
me there...it's straight down a good 50 feet!

There's the Wild Bunch running across their paddock.

Ok, I had to step on the edge where
Cowboy did to get this shot!

Ok, we're off the hill..that was fun!

Brego's trying to get a lil' attention.

But Colt won't get away from me far enough to take any pics!
He's such a clown...playin' with a weed.

Whiskey says he likes the sunshine and is ready for spring!

Are you?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

I'm Ready...but I'm Not...Merry Christmas Anyway!

You would think that without having children Christmas would be a snap...well, for me it's not! I'm ready enough to get by...

The lil' Juniper tree is lit...and there are wrapped gifts under it.
Yep, that's John Wayne with a Santa hat watching over our
expensive gifts (LOL) with his shotgun!

The apple pie came out perfect this morning!
The recipe can be found in your own Betty Crocker cook book.

The English Toffee also came out delicious!

Here's the recipe if you want...it's super easy...

Butter a cookie sheet and sprinkle with your favorite chopped nuts.

Bring 1 Cup butter and 1 Cup brown sugar to a boil stirring constantly for 8-10 minutes (300 degrees).

Spread the butter/sugar mixture with a spatula over the nuts to make a thin layer.

Melt 1 Hershey chocolate bar over the warm top.

Sprinkle with more chopped nuts. Cool and break into bite size pieces. ENJOY~~

Is that too simple or what!

But, I didn't get two of my leather projects done...so My Man will be missing a gift in the morning as will be one of my best riding buddies. All I can say is that the wait will be worth it! ;~)

I want to wish all of my new blogger friends a very
blessed Christmas with family, friends and critters.

And for those of you who have horses, I wish the following~~

May all the lil' Cowgirls...

and all the lil' Cowboys...

Laugh with a horse with the personality of Elmer...

Ride a horse that's fat, healthy and happy...

Be blessed with an angel watching over you as you ride...

And experience the Joy of the Horse like never before.

Merry Christmas Pilgrim!

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Secret Santa Paws came!!!

Cowboy and Cindy Sue have been waiting with bated dog breath for many days for this day to arrive.

Secret Santa Paws came!!!

If you don't know about Dogster.com, it's a dog web community...yep, much like FaceBook or MySpace...but for dogs!! Cindy Sue and Cowboy have their own pages (and they have more friends than I do!!!). I've (we've) met a lot of really nice dogs and their owners over the past couple of years...it's a lot of fun.

So anyhoo...my pups belong to a small group called The Dog House and they draw names every year for a gift exchange...hence "Secret Santa Paws"! I put my two in as a single. So, their package came via mail yesterday and we picked it up today. (Teresa the Post Mistress called yesterday to let us know we had a package...is that small town service or what!)

Our Post Mistress knows Cindy Sue & Cowboy...
They get more mail than we do!

Oh my gosh!!! This package smells like dogs... & treats!!!

Hurry up mom!!! What's the problem?!? Ok, Ok...here we go...

Wasn't that fun?!?!?! We all thought it was!

Look at all the lovely pressies from Primo and Mona Lisa!!

Cindy Sue took her treat over to the wood stove...
she daintily chewed to her heart's content.

Cowboy enjoyed his on the kitchen floor.

(Abby, no photo available!)

Abby took off to the out of doors to body slam hers and probably bury it!

Who had more entertainment...dogs or humans? Well, we all had a great time and will look forward to Secret Santa Paws next year.

Merry Christmas to everyone's critters!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sunday Stills

Here we are again with another production of Sunday Stills! Ed chose "Food" as the challenge of the week.

My menu for the week was not photogenic quality...well, the liver and onions looked good to me, but may turn many the other way! So, cookies seemed a lil' safer. Now, I couldn't decide which one photo to use, so I made the executive decision that I would use three! All three shots are set at "Natural Light" on my camera, and I had the ceiling lights on.

My first shot is "baked vs cookie dough"...both tasted really good!

My second shot I like, but I was having trouble getting rid of the reflection off of the cookie jar. This one was the best of the 10 shots or so I took.

My last shot is for Santa himself. I thought a lil' practice for the big night wouldn't hurt. Of course I taste tasted the milk and cookies after the photo shoot and gave the flavor an A+ ;~)

Merry Christmas to y'all!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Cold~Snow~Cold...more Snow and Cold coming

It's been a little busy around here with the cold spell and trying to get ready for Christmas too. We've only had 4-6 inches of snow since Tuesday, but the wind has moved it in drifts strategically placed around the barn and house...usually where it makes walking the hardest!

Wednesday morning we woke to -16 degrees...definitely a record for us here...we get cold, but not quite that cold on a regular basis. The high that day was a balmy 14 degrees. Thank goodness the wind wasn't blowing.

Some photos from the past few days~~

The welcome sign at the rail fence coming up to the house.
This is the first lil' skiff of snow we got.

Colt waiting for breakfast...he loves to drag his nose through the snow.

Our barn is pretty drafty...a lil' snow drift inside the barn.

My hollyhocks at the back door longing for spring to arrive.

These photos are starting at sunrise Tuesday morning after we had most of the snow fall.

One of the stall doors at the barn.

Warming???? GOOD!!!

I do have a lil' bit of a fascination with the rock cliffs...I always love the color contrast.

The neighbor's horses with Hat Butte in the background.

Cindy Sue is really loving her new winter coat.
She dives her nose into it when we get ready to go outside.
I was out fixing the hot wire fence here. The afternoon was beautiful...no wind!

Cowboy helping me clean stalls...having himself a shitsicle for a snack!

Our handy dandy lil' tractor.
I use it to feed when the snow is too deep to push a
wheel barrow in and it gets lots of snow plowing too!

Cowboy watching the sun going down on Hat Butte and Anderson Valley.