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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Monday, January 28, 2013

Muddy Monday

Pierce looks cute even with his mud mask on!

Mud Mask

We have an inch of snow this mornin'...and it's going to be 70 degrees on Thursday...CRAZY!!! It won't last...but with the higher temps, the permafrost is going to make the ground interesting.


Have an awesome week!!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Sunday Stills ~ The Letter "F"

This week's photo challenge for Sunday Stills...The Letter F

FIRST...I have a question. OK...those of you that use Blogger and are uploading your photos directly through Blogger, are you have any clarity issues?

My first photo is "Flooding Fence Posts." There are two copies below...the first through Flickr; the second through Blogger. Look at the clarity, and I had the same problem with every photo that I loaded through Blogger today! I don't know what the deal is, but Blogger seems to be having issues!

Flooding Fenceposts
This photo uploaded to Flickr then imbedded to Blogger

This same photo was uploaded directly to Blogger

If you know what might be going on, please email or leave a comment.


An Orange That Isn't Orange
An Orange That Isn't An Orange.
This is a Moro Blood Orange...juicy, but not too sweet.

Left Behind
Farm Equipment
It's been sitting in the same spot ever since we moved here...over seven years.
I bet it hauled a bunch of hay in its time!

Geraniums in Winter
A surprise from my Geranium in the dead of winter!

Check out the other participants at Sunday Stills...or come along and join in yourself!!


On another subject...flooding from yesterday's post...I need to clarify things a little bit...visuals are best I think!

Flood Water Routes
Flood water routes
The water fall that's created from the berm comes off the rim rock on the right and goes down hill to the pasture gates and on out to the alfalfa field.

The center arrow shows the direction of the water flow from all the snow and rain that drains from that area, my circus pole and round, which goes into the ditch behind the barn.

The arrow on the left is the direction the water flows from that area which goes in front of the barn...and was too frozen to dig a ditch.

The little brown run-in shed located at the middle of the barn is a high spot, so everything drains from about that point toward the barn.

Long story short, builder (before us) didn't put the barn up on a pad like he should have; he built it level with the ground. Time has taken its toll and low spots have been created at the front and back sliding doors.

The hay storage and tack room have been built up to the correct level. The stalls are about half way built up (need to add more fill), but the aisle down the middle needs to come up 6-8 inches, and I want rubber mats wall to wall in the aisle. We'll put a small culvert at the front and the back of the barn...LOL...when we have money and time...so, it's a work in progress!

Today, everything's all froze up again and we've got to decide whether to leave Whiskey out in that rim pasture on the right or try to get him up the a stall in the barn without falling...it's a sheet of VERY slick ice. So far, he's staying off the ice and has a pool of water to drink from. But that pool will be froze in the next day since the forecast is the mid teens for at least the next week. I hate this part of winter.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Flowing, Flowing, Flowing...

...keep those waters flowing...

The worst part about snow is after the snow.

I loved my clean dogs and horses in the snow.

Now they are almost unrecognizable...and definitely NOT photograph worthy...sigh...

And this time around, because we had such a long cold spell, the ground if frozen down many inches, and the melting snow (and yesterday's rain) has no where to go...except where we don't want it to go of course!

There's 6 inches of standing water inside the front of the barn for about the first 12 feet. My Man tried to get a ditch dug for drainage with the tractor, but the ground is too frozen to hardly make a scratch...so we wait...

Yesterday's mornin' feedin'...slick!

It's been about three years since the "water fall" off the rim rock behind the barn has happened. When there's enough melting snow and rain along with the frozen ground, all the water has to go somewhere...downhill of course...

Many years ago, there was a mud slide from a similar situation, and the story we heard is that the mud made it into the house that was standing there at the time (not our house). So, to prevent that from happening again, a berm was dug on the topside of the rim rock and it directs all the water past the back of the house to a spot behind the barn.

The waterfall off the rim rock.

It was getting dark yesterday afternoon when I took these photos...sorry for the blurry focus.

The beginning of the "creek."

The flowing water heads on out behind me through the two horse pastures then into the alfalfa field.
There's about two inches of water where I'm standing.

When we had done what we could to divert water and finished feeding, the water fall was coming down twice as much as the photo.

This morning, it's but a trickle since it's almost freezing again and the rain has stopped. There's been some snow flurries this morning, but I don't think it's going to amount to too much.

I've got Colt, Pierce and Whiskey all paddocked separately, and I feel that they are safe from slipping on the ice...that's my main concern.

OK...one more photo...Rastus was bored yesterday...

Hmmmm...flower beds make good dog beds too it seems.

I'm going to have to keep an eye on him when planting season comes...but he is awfully cute!

Friday, January 25, 2013

A Lil' of This ~ A Lil' of That

If you take photos for your blog, I'm sure this happens to you; photos you like didn't get into a blog for one reason or another.

So, here's a miss-matched set of photos in no particular order ~

Cold Paws
Cold Paws
I don't think I've ever seen CS's ears up like this winter...maybe it's the cold...maybe it's her age. She sure loves being out with the "big dogs"...but the wood stove is her best friend, besides me!

Long Ears
Stetson's Long Ears
One frosty Stetson on a chilly morning.

Sunset On The Rim Rock
Sunset on the Rim Rock
My favorite rim rock. This was at 4 o'clock in the afternoon; here from the back side of the barn, the day cools off quickly as the sun disappears.

Water Trough Sauna
Tumbleweed's head looks a little fuzzy...from the steam coming up off of the water. I love tank heaters!

Rastus; Doing what he loves most
Work, work, work...that's all this cow dog wants to do!

Garden Pond in Winter

This year-round water fall/pond is in the yard of the home where I get my hair cut. They tell me they have a heater in it to keep the fish alive during the winter...and the deer come in on a daily basis to water, so they have to fill it up quite often. I'd love to have one of these in my yard...the dogs would love it too, but I don't have the time to take care of it.

I've been researching tabletop water falls...I think something on the deck in the summer would be nice and then bring it into the house for winter. Have any of you made one? I found this "How to make a tabletop water fall"...sounds pretty simple, and Lord knows we have enough rock around here!

Oh yes, welcome to some new readers: Jenny, Wendy, Paula, and Lori! Nice to have you along for the ride.

Hey, Happy Friday!!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Tuesday Tune ~ Adrian Buckaroogirl

A little on the lighter side today...don't ya think after yesterday's coyote discussion?

But, I've got to say that I enjoyed reading everyone's comments and appreciate the understanding of those who have been there and have experienced the cruelty of nature (and shared your stories), and I appreciate the open mindedness of those who hope they never have to live it themselves but are ready to do what's necessary to protect their family.

Like Cindy D. commented "it's their prerogative"...and yes, indeed it is...and we'll just leave it at that.

So, let's get on to some fun!

I haven't done a tune for a while on the blog...not sure if you enjoy them or not, but I do! My Man and I don't listen to "country" music...we favor "cowboy" music.

This song, Old Time Vaquero, is almost haunting when you watch the video with the awesome old photos from way back when. It was written by Adrian and her father, David Brannan; composed by Adrian.

Looking closely at the photos, I'm amazed by how similar the way the cow work was done back then to how it's done today where we live. It gave me a flashback; it's why I was in tears sitting on Colt at the fire with my first calf to brand...I got to live the dream.

You'll want to take note of the horses, their gear, the construction of the corrals...everything in these photos are a treasure.

Adrian and I are nothing alike...she likes horses that buck, and I like mine to keep their feet on the ground...she wears make up and looks like a gorgeous doll, and I don't even own a tube of lipstick. But I love her music and her youthful exuberance for life!

Hope you enjoy!

Adrian Buckaroogirl Blog

Adrian's website with music and concert dates etc.

Have an awesome Tuesday!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Life Is Not Always Just Smelling the Roses

Hmmmmmm...lost a reader yesterday...guess they didn't approve of Cindy Sue's "present."

I can't apologize.

This is about protecting family and livestock.

Paddy, born March 2012

I just have to get this off my chest.

If any one of my readers had been there the day that Cindy Sue was attacked, they would have felt the fear of loosing a loved one to scavengers. I saw the look in those coyotes eyes as they attempted time after time to get underneath Cindy Sue's coat to kill her. Yes, it went through my mind that they could come after me just as easily...that was terrifying in itself, but I had to do what I could to save my girl. God was watching over us that morning.

If any one of my readers had experienced a calf being ripped out of its mother as she was giving birth, they might understand how devastating coyotes can be on the lively hood of a rancher. And it can happen so quickly, the rancher doesn't even have a chance to pull up his gun to shoot the coyote. This happens all the time.

Life at the Rough String is real...as it is at every ranch and farm in America or anywhere around the world. There is good and there is bad.

I don't like taking life, but I WILL protect my family and property.

I appreciate those who understand the difference between a TV drama and real life.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

It's MY Gotcha Day~by Cindy Sue

Guest blogger Cindy Sue:

WoWzer...six years ago today, mom 'n dad drove three hours one way to Battle Mountain Nevada to pick me up from the rescue. They had only seen one photo of me on PetFinder...and they wanted me!!!!

Lil' ME with my silly lil' flop ear!

It was luv at first sight!

Mom 'n me...I was learnin' to be a Rattie Ranch Dog!

On the drive home, I sat in mom's lap all the way...just like I'd been there since birth. I was given up for adoption in Elko Nevada and didn't do well in that crazy place...I was so scared!!!

So, they found a small rescue for me to go to, but I still didn't eat well and lost a lot of weight. The vet said I was healthy...I just needed a home!

I remember on the way home, they had to stop at a store and left me in the car...I ripped open the bag of treats they had bought for me and ate them ALL...I was hungry!!! BOL!!

My first day at home...I was terribly skinny.

We'll, it's been quite an exciting 6 years to say the least. I've survived a few mishaps:

The rattlesnake bite on the nose
The Great Horned Owl attack
The two coyotes that attacked me and wanted to eat me for breakfast
The unknown something that tried to get me and ripped a hole in my front leg

Mom says it's my nose that gets me in trouble...but that's the Rat Terrier in me...I just got to stick my nose in every hole!!!

Well, if you've been reading mom's blog, you know that my middle name seems to be Trouble!

On a Mission
I'm on a mission...probably into trouble...BOL!!!

My mom and dad are my heroes though...and I love them dearly.

We had a GREAT day today!!! After mom dressed me up in a cute lil' hoodie that says "100% Loved by Everyone," I got cake!

Applesauce pancake to be exact!

Then mom said it was time for pressies. Pressies???!! For ME?!?!?!

Mom put my coat on me, and we had to go outside to the tractor.

OK...mom says I gots to give you a WARNING...if you don't like dead animal photos...go away now.

Alrighty then, for those of you who stayed for the excitement...

We go outside to the tractor, and dad shows me my pressie...

One dead coyote!!! YEAH!!!  I got my lip all curled up at the nasty sucker.

I HATE coyotes! They caused me lots of pain, and this is dead coyote number two...revenge for ME! Mom got the first one...and dad got this one just after breakfast!

Look at me barkin' 'n givin' him the stink eye...grrrrrrrrrrr!

Mom even did a video...she said I was a tough lil' Rattie Ranch Dog!

Well, that's about all the excitement there was. The rest of the day was good. I laid by the wood stove and kept warm; except when mom was runnin' the devil machine vacuum...I went outside for that. I hate vacuums too, BOL!!

Thanks for sharing my day...love you all!

Cindy Sue xoxox

PS. If you wanna read about the nasty coyotes attacking me, you can click HERE. That was two years ago.

Sunday Stills ~ Big Sky

Boy...it's been a VERY long time since I participated in Sunday Stills...and I'm not sure why. The photo challenges are always interesting, the people are fun, and the photography is good.

So, I'm going to get back into the groove of things.

This week's challenge is photos with Big Sky...head on over and check out the other participants! Their links are in this link.

Riddle Mountain
Riddle Mountain in a blanket of snow.

Friday, January 18, 2013

On the Run

OK...got 5 minutes before I need to get out the door for a day at the Post Office. Just checkin' in to let you know I'm still here...really!

Crystal Lights

Wednesday we had quite a bit of moisture in the mornin" (another 0*F mornin'), but the elm trees looked like they had clear Christmas lights strung through them. This photo picked up a few of them, and you need to look close. They're the spots that almost look like sun reflections off of a dirty lens.

OK...off 'n runnin'!

Have a super Friday!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

I'm In Love With Beer


Beer Bread

I'm in love with beer bread!!!

Where have you been all my life?!?!?

Some days, do you ever feel like you just climbed out from underneath a mushroom...peered at the world with squinty eyes and said "Where am I?"

Oh my...it happens to me quite often!

I was simply looking for something to serve with my homemade bean soup...and found this post from seven years ago. Seven years!

Warm or cold. With or without butter. Delicious!!!

Three simple ingredients...how could it go wrong?!

Quoted from TheKitchn.com

Eula's Beer Bread

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a bread pan w/ cooking spray. If it's the new non-stick pan, don't grease at all.

In a large bowl, stir together w/ a wooden spoon:
  • 3 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • Add 1 can room temperature, not flat, beer.
Stir just until moistened & dump into the pan. Bake 1 hour 15 minutes, buttering the top after the first 45 minutes w/ butter or margarine, and then again in 15 minutes, and again when you pull it out of the oven. I use soft margarine & a paint brush. Cool 5 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

DON'T try to make this "healthy" by cutting down on the sugar. That's the secret, the sweet/salty thing going on w/ the sugar & the beer & the butter!

This is a "quick bread" that shouldn't be over-mixed. We've found the new non-stick pans will burn on the bottom when the butter melts down the sides.

It's HEAVENLY! And, I just used a cheap can of My Man's pi$$-water beer. Me? I prefer an Amber Ale if you please ;~)

We ate it warm with butter, the soup and a salad. My Man insisted on a couple of slices for breakfast. And, I had to have a slice before I went out to feed the herd in the mornin'!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Meltdown

With 42 degrees and sunshine yesterday, the snow is melting away. It was a gorgeous day for a quick walk with the pups, so we went down to the old building of Princeton which is on our property at the end of the driveway.

I posted a couple of photos in my Photo a Day blog for day #8 of Old Princeton. Slowly the building seems to be blowing away...literally. I find shingles in the alfalfa field quite often, and the insides are falling in and the insulation of newspapers and magazines on the walls are becoming very sparse.

Cindy Sue of course...bundled in sweater and her infamous red coat.

This door to Old Princeton made a nice frame for the photos. Red Dog was too busy sniffin' for varmints to capture him!

Rastus with his "look." His eyes are my favorite.

After wasting time in the sunshine...even though it felt Oh So Good...I decided that I better go check the main barn. Dang, it was not good.

The usual flood behind the barn...which flowed into the barn at the front and the back...sigh.

So, I spent the next hour and a half, digging (chipping ice) ditches for water to drain, shoveling some of the remaining snow away from the barn in the runs and scooping water out of the aisle and one of the stalls with a large flat shovel.

Every year, My Man and I say we're going to fix the problem, but finances are always needed somewhere else...so the project gets put lower on the priority list...and we get to do this every year when we have a large amount of snow. Fun! Not.

It's already drying up inside the barn, so it'll be back to normal soon. Nothing is ever damaged; it's just a pain.

And life goes on...with a beautiful sunset...

Shadows at Sunset
Shadows from the hill behind our place cast its outline on Hat Butte.

Pocket of Sunset
A Pocket of Sunset

More snow is forecast for today and tonight...but not enough to amount to much.

Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Fun in the Snow!

WoW...a balmy 42 degrees right now! The thaw is well underway, but by tomorrow night, it'll be 19 degrees with snow again...highs in the 20's. So, the heat wave is going to be short lived.

But, I'm being VERY cautious of spots of ice. We lost Carina a few years back to an accident on ice, and I don't want to experience that again.

Yesterday afternoon was a good day to take a hike with the pups. And, it's time to get started working Rastus with the cows again too!

That's Rastus in the flying snow! He was more than anxious to work cows!!

Where the cows are, it doesn't get much sun, so the snow is still pretty deep. But the footing was good, so Rastus and I worked on commands. We haven't worked cows since last fall...we both need work!

The look of satisfaction. Rastus says "I did good!!"

Red Dog has his fun too running up and down the hill side in the snow!

Find the Dog
On the look out...checkin' for varmints of course.

Lots of melting...

I took this photo yesterday knowing that the icicles wouldn't be their today...in fact, the whole section slid off the roof about the time I went out to feed last evening.

Pierce is really doing good too! His legs have lost most of their swelling and if the ground would cooperate, I'd let him out with Colt again (we think we have any corners "Pierce proof"). But, for now, I'll leave him alone with the stall, run and round pen...I prefer to play it safe right now.

The plan is to go out and work cows again this afternoon...off we go!