Cowboy Q&A

This is one of the first (of many) photos I took after One Cute Cowboy and I started dating. That grin *swoon* still gets me. I thought it might be fun to do a little Q&A with The Cowboy, himself! So here’s a few things to get to know One Cute Cowboy a little better. So I asked him the questions in bold and his answers are in the italics. Hope y’all enjoy this little Q&A!!

Horses or Cattle?

Cattle

Favorite color & breed of horse?

A dapple grey, Quarter-Horse

Black Angus or Red Angus Cattle?

Black

Herefords or Charlois?

Herefords, they make black baldies

Is it “Leggin’s” or “Chaps”?

Leggins

Is it a rope or lasso?

It’s a rope.

Favorite cut of meat?

Ribeye

Bumper-pull or Gooseneck?

Gooseneck, ’cause you can spin that sucker ’round.

How should it be cooked?

Medium, with lots of juice.

How do you like your potato cut?

French fries.

Favorite Silversmith?

Sam Jenkins.

Favorite leather-maker?

Good buddies, Rem Mosimann and Clay Jackson.

Our wedding gifts to one another, His a new pair of leggins, mine a new guitar strap. Both made by Rem Mosimann.

Favorite breed of dog?

Blue Heeler.

Favorite piece of tac?

Saddle.

Favorite type of saddle?

Seat Rig.

Favorite Cowboy hat?

American.

Straw or Felt hat?

Just depends on the season.

Favorite cold weather garment?

Kanaine Shop Pendleton Cowl.

Branding Season or Calving Season?

Branding

What did you want to be when you were little?

A farmer or rancher.

If you could live anywhere, where would you go?

The Nebraska Sandhills.

What’s your favorite western?

John Wayne’s The Cowboys.

If you weren’t a Cowboy, what would you be doing?

I have no idea. Hopefully something Ag related. (He thought long and hard about this too!)

Whats your favorite part of being a Cowboy?

Getting to work first-hand with God’s creation, daily.

Hope you’ve had a great weekend!

*ASpottedHeart

May on the Ponderosa

Well, here we are starting into June. My oh my, how summer has rushed upon us! It’s been in the upper 80’s low 90’s the last couple weeks, which feels insane to be that warm already. But I will say, we’ve had some nice little thunderstorms! We’re always thankful for rain!!

This month has been full of more brandings for One Cute Cowboy. 2,900 calves in 21 days to be exact!

Started the month off with finishing up the branding at the ranch headquarters and has been gypsy jumping around from ranch to ranch “dayworking” (helping other ranches for a short time), all month!

This time of the year is tough on cowboys because not only are they working long hard days but they have to get their normal jobs completed and cows checked and problems dealt with on their own ranches after “dayworking” for the other ranches. Needless to say, they can turn into VERY long days! No one ever said being a Cowboy’s wife would be easy.

OCC had the yearly branding at my in-laws in New Mexico, just on the other side of Kenton, Oklahoma this month as well. Once again, Lil Cute Cowboy and I decided to stay home since it would be hot, windy, and dusty. This mama bear is still a little overly protective. ☺️

The brand on the calf pictured above is One Cute Cowboy’s great grandpa’s brand. It’s been in his family for 5 generations! Agriculture is all about tradition you know. It’s neat to know that the calves have received this same brand for all of these years.

The bulls of the ranch were finally happy to be placed out in their different pastures for the summer. It’s important to make sure and give the bulls and cows a break from one another. Some of the bulls will be gathered back up in July, and some will get to stay with the cows until October.

Speaking of bulls, we got all of our registered bulls delivered this month as well. It’s a good feeling to have them all placed at good ranches .

One Cute Cowboy and I have our own little herd that got vaccinated and branded this month too. Have I ever told you about Mama, the friendly cow? She’s an older cow that Riley and I got in our first herd right after we got married. She is such a sweetheart, she’ll come right up to eat cake out of your hand (she’s actually usually up in your business trying to see if you actually have any cake in your hands to snatch up!) She always throws us a good little bull calf each year, which we’re always happy to see! She’s talked one of the other mamas into coming up to us too. We call this ‘ol gal Sister.

One of the biggest changes this month on the Ponderosa is I went back to work at my 9 to 5. It’s been incredibly hard leaving Little Bear everyday, but we’re getting more of a routine down and learning and growing. I try to remind myself to just be in the moment and not to dwell on not being with him all day. It’s definitely hard on this mama!

This Lil Ranch Kid is growing like crazy and smiling and laughing and just so much dang fun! Our hearts are full here on the Ponderosa.

Happy June!

*ASpottedHeart

February on the Ponderosa

February started out moving a few of the cattle off of corn stalks back to the ranch. Luckily we’ve got these portable pens. This comes in super handy, and saves a lot of time not having to load, haul, and set up panels. It’s all right there and you just “unpack” it.

We’ve continued into calving season and having babies left and right it seems. The cowboys are still checking all through the day and night. One particular night, when it was frigidly cold, I heard One Cute Cowboy coming back inside from his 2:00 a.m. check, and I heard him call my name once he came in the back door. I thought, “Oh crap! He wants me to come help him pull a calf. Should I act like I didn’t hear him?” But I got up out of bed anyhow to see if he needed my help, when I rounded the corner, this is what I saw…

This little guy was probably about an hour old when OCC went out to check heifers. Said he was just shivering, and mama hadn’t cleaned him off very good, so he brought him in the house to warm him up a bit. We gave him some colostrum and wrapped him in a blanket, put a heat lamp on him, and went back to bed while Nurse Hershey kept watch on him through the night. She is absolutely infatuated with the baby calves.

The cowboys have stayed busy to say the least. There’s a lot to pay attention to during calving season. You’re not only watching new heifers, but you’re having to watch the cows too as their calving. Just because they’ve already had one or two, doesn’t mean there still can’t be different things to watch for and complications.

One Cute Cowboy tries to ride through the cows that are calving, on horseback at least 4 days a week. You are more apt to notice if there are problems if you see the cow in her natural state, rather than chasing the feed wagon, wanting to be fed. You get a better sense of how she and her baby are getting along and if all is well. One afternoon, One Cute Cowboy called to ask if I’d bring out the drench with some colostrum. There was a mama who had had a hard labor with a pretty big calf, and the calf was real lethargic either from being so big, or the labor being so rough, so it was detrimental to get some nutrients in him to give him the energy to nurse by himself. So I drove out to the ranch and we drove out to the mama and her calf. He then told me, when he rode up on him and his mama, he looked out and there were 4 coyotes laying down in the taller grass, waiting for that mama to leave, thinking the calf would be easy prey. The smart cookie he is, he got the cows closest to them to come up and he fed them some cake near the new baby and mama, knowing good and well, that many cows wouldn’t let those coyotes anywhere near this new baby (or their own babies staying at their sides.) That can be something really cool about cattle, they really are “pack” or “family” oriented with one another. This little guy was so dang cute and he was big! He drank the colostrum right up and you could start to tell almost immediately in his eyes that he was starting to perk up some! I love the hair on a newborn calf, they’re so silky and soft. This guy was so sweet. Luckily he had a good protective mama too. If OCC hadn’t been horseback, he might not have ever seen him and unfortunately, he probably would have ended up dying from lack of protein and electrolytes to get up and have that first nursing of colostrum. A couple days later, One Cute Cowboy rode up on him sunnin’ just as content as can be! Pretty cool to know we helped save a life!

The last couple weeks the cowboys have been consolidating wheat pasture cattle in anticipation for shipping in March.

As for me, I can’t believe it’s already March!! Won’t be long now until this heifer calves out! Haha!

Hope you’ve enjoyed this month’s ranching series! I’m always appreciative of my readers, and always glad to hear from y’all or answer any questions! Thanks for reading!

*ASpottedHeart

December on the Ponderosa

This month started out unusually warm for December. We kept hearing colder weather was coming, but it was hard to believe when you didn’t really need anything but a light jacket to go outside. But then, let me tell you, when the cold hit, it hit! The last few days haven’t gotten above 16-18 degrees, finally the sun is starting to poke out today. If you follow One Cute Cowboy’s instagram, I’ m sure you’ve seen how thrilled he’s been about the colder temperatures.

This month has been all about wheat pasture cattle. Every. Single. Day. OCC loads up a trusty horse, a fueled 4 wheeler, charged fence batteries, his medicine bag, and hot coffee, 7 Days a week to go check the cattle on wheat pasture and corn stalks. He makes his rounds through 6 pastures at one location, then 2 other separate fields, then checks the bull calves that are also on wheat. While he’s at these pastures he also has to break the inch thick ice in the tanks, and check the hot wire fences to make sure they’re keeping their charge. Cowboy roping a steer

This guy wasn’t sick, just in the wrong pasture and had to be moved.

He checks for anything that might be sick, or not looking healthy. Cowboys wear many hats, and one of those hats is unfortunately, Doctor. One has to know what medicine is good for what ailment, they have to keep track of which ones they’ve already doctored, and what medicine they gave them. Some medicines are so strong they can only be doctored once with that particular kind and it’s imperative for the Cowboy to remember what calf the medicine was distributed to.

During wheat pasture season, calves can get bloated on the wheat really easily and really fast. There are several things the cowboys do to help fight bloat. They put out a block called a “bloat” block and they also add soap to their water and keep hay out. The blocks and soap help the stomach continue to bubble and break down the foam which helps the gas escape. The hay offers dry matter which allows the rumen to operate correctly.

Besides checking wheat pasture cattle, the cowboys have also been feeding cake and hay to the ranch cattle. They definitely keep a full schedule in the winter months!

We also got to get away for an overnight trip to see some of OCC’s family for Christmas, and also had a nice Christmas with my whole family once we got back. Christmas was here and gone in the blink of an eye, which always makes me a little sad. But it’s exciting to think this time next year we’ll have a little pup around to unwrap gifts and start some new family traditions.

The cake my niece made all by herself, “Frosty.”

I hope you all have had a wonderful December, and are ready to jump into the New Year with lots of hope, love, and excitement!

Happy New Year! 🍾

*ASpottedHeart

November on the Ponderosa

Wheat pasture month. This is the beginning of once again, a busy season. (It’s all one big busy season really…) This month we started moving some of our cattle to wheat pasture. But not only our cattle, One Cute Cowboy also takes care of a couple of ranchers cattle for them on wheat in the winter time. Usually they want to put their smaller cattle on the wheat pasture, 400-550lb calves, this way some of the smaller cattle are gaining good, healthy weight, and the rancher doesn’t have to take care of them in the winter months.

This guy is ready for the winter, he’s got it figured out–Cow house! Haha!

Most ranchers will have wheat pasture cattle from November through March. So for the next 4 months, OCC will be checking pastures, doctoring sick cattle, checking water, feeding cattle on wheat, and feeding the cows on grass and corn stalks.

One thing a lot of people don’t think about when it comes to ranching is the time it takes to do upkeep on our fences. One thing One Cute Cowboy has done a lot of this month (and will continue to do) is fix fence, build fence, and continue upkeep on fence. What I mean by that is constantly making sure the fence stays hot enough to keep the cattle in, and that means taking a new battery out to the charger every day depending on the fence. A battery will keep its charge for 3 to 4 days. You have to think about keeping your batteries charged when they’re not on the fence as well.

This month we’ve also shipped calves, along with getting some cattle shipped in (to go on wheat pasture and corn stalks.) These are a few of the good-looking steers we got from eastern Oklahoma to go on wheat pasture. One Cute Cowboy and my dad also raise registered bulls, so our little bulls also went to wheat pasture for the winter where they’ll get big for the spring.

We also had a really nice Thanksgiving at my parents. All my dad’s side of the family got together, which doesn’t happen very often. There was lots of food eaten, dominos played, and my personal favorite Scattegories! We played 13 rounds of it, it was so much fun!

My favorite part of Thanksgiving, the cranberry salad. Yum! We are incredibly blessed to live the life we do. One of our biggest blessings this year will be out baby boy in March! We had so much to be thankful for this year!

Hope you all have had a blessed November and I hope you’ve enjoyed November on the Ponderosa!

Happy December!

*ASpottedHeart

Fall works on the Ponderosa


In case you’re not used to cowboy slang, “Fall Works” is when it’s time to work/wean cattle in the Fall. One Cute Cowboy and the rest of the cowboys have spent the last couple months prepping for Fall works. Getting fence fixed, built, and making sure the mamas and calves are ready for weaning season. Docotoring anything that seems to need it, and making sure all is healthy enough to happen.

One Cute Cowboy roped a cow that needed doctoring.

One Cute Cowboy welding on some pens.


One Cute Cowboy had the idea a few weeks ago about a new monthly series I could try. I’m going to start a monthly ranching series where at the end of each month I’ll talk about what’s been going on on the ranch (or the Ponderosa as I like to call it.) I’ll still be doing my mood boards here and there, but starting at the end of this month, I’ll kick it off with October on the Ponderosa. So be looking for it towards the end of the month! I hope this is something y’all enjoy!

Happy Columbus Day!

*ASpottedHeart

Branding Season

I’m a few weeks late on this and I apologize. Hope you enjoy!


Let me be honest, I’ve never been a big fan of branding season. When I was a kid, being the youngest, I guess you’d say I had….ahem…certain privileges. Ha! I didn’t have to go out in the early morning when the rest of the crew went out, I was able to go stay with my Grandma Smith, and help her get lunch ready to take to the crew at noon. 

I loved to watch her pack her pretty picnic basket with homemade sweet pickles, homemade ground beef sandwiches, chips, and always some kind of yummy dessert, homemade of course. We’d go out and they’d gather around sitting on buckets, barrels, and tailgates ready for lunch. That was always fun to me, sitting in the shade, eating lunch with everyone.

After everyone was done eating, it was time to continue branding. Grandma always wanted to stay and “watch them brand a few.” Much to my dismay, we’d watch them brand for a little while. 

 As I got older I was enlisted to help. I did things like drive the feed pick up to help gather, fill the shots with medicine, and every now and then try to give the shots. 

As most of you are aware, I’m an animal lover, and it’s more than just an “oh I love how cute and fun animals are,” I almost feel like it’s a sort of calling. My depth of compassion for four legged creatures is deep. So you can probably imagine that branding isn’t always the easiest road for me.  There’s a lot of calves bawling, sometimes blood, and a pretty terrible smell to top it off! But branding  involves a lot more than that. There’s of course branding and tagging the cattle but also making sure they have their vaccinations and it also gives the chance to look over each animal to make sure their over-all being is doing well. The vaccinations we give helps fight disease and bacteria in each calf. It helps boost their immune systems and helps them stay healthy. In all reality, it’s one of the best things we could do for our cattle; making sure they’re at their best and none of them need any special attention. 


These days I usually end up giving part of the shots and helping make sure the syringes stay full of medicine. On occasions I get to stay at the Ponderosa making lunch and taking it out just like Grandma used to. 


Something occurred to me this year at our branding– I end up physically touching every single one of our calves during this yearly occurrence, why not try to say a quick prayer of well-being over each calf as I quickly lay my hands upon them? These animals are a vital part of our daily lives, so why not?

As I’ve grown older I’ve realized branding isn’t just something we go through the motions of each year. There’s a reason why One Cute Cowboy gets so excited when branding season rolls around, it’s because it’s a time of gathering together and all pitching in to help. It’s a time for family and friends and working hard and laughing and making traditions while practicing the old ones. It’s living out our heritages. For centuries cowboys have gathered together to do this very same thing. So it is amazing to think we’re just doing what our great-great-great-great grandfathers and grandmothers did before us. It’s pretty cool to think about being a part of something big like that. 

Maybe I’ve found some silver lining in branding season after all. 
*ASpottedHeart

May Inspiration 

May has been such a weird month. We started out with snow and have had lots of rain and wind. It’s flown by and I feel like it’s been a complete whirlwind of a month, yet it’s lasted forever. I realized I hadn’t posted a mood/inspiration board for this month! So here are some things that have been in my mind’s eye this month, keeping me motivated and inspired.

Can you tell I’ve been day dreaming about a new bathroom? 🙂 I enjoy doing this inspiration/mood posts, because it helps me express my mood and feelings and inspirations of that month. It helps give me a vision for the month at hand. Do you, my followrs, enjoy them or would you rather see me do a different type of “monthly series?” Let me know in the comments below! Or e-mail me at aspottedheart@gmail.com

I’d love to hear from you!!

Snow Days…in April/May


So I don’t know if any of you lovelies have heard, but my part of the country has been under about 12-14inches of snow. Yup, you read that right. A blizzard rolled in on April 29th, and we’ve been without power since. Luckily One Cute Cowboy is a smart cookie and wired our house up where we could hook up his welder for electricity. Thank the Lord for cowboys! 


So yesterday he and I blazed a trail from our house to my parent’s house, him in the front-end loader and me in my car behind him. A 5 minute drive, took us a little past 2 hours to make. There were drifts 7-8ft high on the road. We made it over there so he and my dad could go to our cattle with babies (and my donkey Izzy–she’s been on baby patrol) that’s about 25 miles North of town. Luckily a lot of the highway was fairly cleared off, but there’s 10 miles of dirt road that took some time. It took them all of 6 hours to get it all done, and praise God all the mamas, babies, and Izzy were doing good. They left a bale of hay for them and headed back. 


Today the cowboys are out looking for/checking all of our cattle and babies. You see, here in the OK Panhandle, when snow comes in and then the wind blows across the plains at 45mph, it causes huge drifts on fences and the cattle just simply walk over. They can get as turned around in a snow storm as we can. So there have been cattle out all over the place, and in different pastures so they’re making sure all are accounted for. 


On the electricity, town and country run on different lines, but the same company. Ours went out about 6:00 Saturday evening, and town’s went out around 10:00 that same night. The winds blew so hard and the rain and snow made the lines so heavy, that over 600 poles were down and they’re predicting to be without electricity for the next few days. So with that said, my mom and I drove to a near-by town, about 45 minutes away and filled up gas cans for our welder and the pickups (no electricity=no gas pumps in town) and got some groceries and dog/cat food, and headed home. 

I got home to see a baby calf had been born in our pens (Yes we’re still in calving season, read all about it here.) Keep in mind we got near 2 in. Of rain before the snow, so our pens are pure mud, and I’m not talking a little muddy, I’m talking almost over my Muck boots, muddy! So this baby is standing (thankfully) and is stuck in mud. So I go in, and you know how mud can just suck you down in, like a vacuum affect, that’s what this little calves’ legs were doing, so I put one arm under his neck and the other around his bottom and pulled with all my might. He’s about a 60lb little calf. I got him out, much to his mama’s disapproval, but got him to a cleared off little paddock and let the mama out there with it. After that I hopped on our 4-wheeler (it’s now 65 degrees, what in the world is happening?!) and came to check on our bulls. I drove down here, and all were here, but there’s a baby sunning in the corner. So I call the cowboys, and they said that’s one that we’re missing in another pasture. (Once again, Praise the Lord!) 


So now, I’m just lounging on the 4-wheeler, waiting for the cowboys to come from headquarters to get the baby and take it to its mama. It’s been an eventful few days.

**Update**

The cowboys came and we loaded the calf up and we had to load the calf on the 4-wheeler because it’s too muddy to get a trailer to it.



I bring to you, the calf wagon! Happy Monday, friends! 

*ASpottedHeart

Spring on the Ponderosa 

I’ve got a couple of different posts in the works, and hopefully one about some of my favorite oils that’ll be done soon. In the mean time, here’s what life’s looked like lately on the Ponderosa.

Siamese cat smelling a lilac bush

Bumper is obsessed with the lilac bushes and the little critters that flutter around them.

One Cute Cowboy feeding the bulls.

My niece cut me some lilacs from her house.

The Cowboys doing cowboy things.

Angus babies!

We planted 49 saplings the past two days.

He’ll always be my lapdog.

There’s a little glimpse into my life lately. I’ll have some new posts up soon! Happy Friday!

*ASpottedHeart