2013 … Oh What a Year

As we look back on 2013 all I can say is it was a year of dynamic challenges.

January – We rang in the new year with the exciting news of pregnancy #4, a trip to the Doctor and a weeks worth of lab work.  The lab work came back with sad results.  Two days later we lost our good Cow Dog, Roxie.

Jan 6

February – February kicked off with a visit from Miss J, Mark and KJ’s family!  Cattle work included bangs vaccinating heifers, preparing to calve and getting our first calf of the season.  Before calving season started I made a trip to visit Mom and Dad.

Feb 17

March – Early in March we ran the cows through the chute and they started calving towards the end of the month.  It was very dry and dusty.

March 26

AprilCalving and farming pretty much sums up April.  We had two major snow storms during the busiest days of calving.  There were lots of babies born in the barn.  J and I discovered that we can make more calving pens than we ever imagined.

April 27

MayMay is a very busy month with branding and moving cattle to grass.  The stress of a drought was heavy on our minds.  Community conversations were based around “what are your plans if it doesn’t rain?”  On Mother’s Day my optimist Husband planted corn in the dry dirt.

May 9

On May 19th received 1.5” of rain!  On May 25th we got hailed out.  By June 1st our rain total was 4.42”.

May 28

June –  The first weekend of June we celebrated the 90th birthday of J’s Grandma with an open house.  Ashleigh and I went to Iowa to visit Sister and attend the Iowa Sheep Industry Association Sheep and Wool Festival.  J sprayed crops and planted millet.  I spruced things up around the ranch by doing a little painting.

June 13

J and I took in the annual town celebration and we rounded out the month with a visit from J’s Brother and his Family.

July 2

July – We made hay, watched our corn grow and checked cattle.

August – In August J and I took several old trees out of the yard, ultra-sounded bred heifers and had new windows installed.  Cousin T and J built a catch pen at our south pasture and attended Dakota Fest.  Molly and I spent a couple weeks in Nebraska visiting home, showing sheep and taking in the State Fair.

September – September was a blur with preconditioning calves, planting winter wheat, chopping corn and hauling hay.

September 12

October – The beginning of October is one I would rather forget.  It will be in the history books for many generations to come.  Blizzard Atlas blew through western South Dakota, Eastern Montana and dipped down into Nebraska leaving devastation in it’s path.  Following the blizzard we had fall like temperatures and the ground was soaked.  We tried to move hay but had to give up until November.

Late October found us moving cattle home from summer grass and weaning calves at Cousin T’s.

We added a new member to our family, Rosie!

October 31

November – It was November before we got around to weaning and working our calves.  Preg checking cows and hauling hay were big projects we got to check off our list.  J and I enjoyed Thanksgiving in Motorcycle City with his extended family.

December 17

December –  J and I took the first weekend of December visit friends.  A week of frigid cold greeted us with highs well below zero.  J and I celebrated Christmas with family and neighbors.  We enjoyed a few days of nice weather before Old Man Winter blew another cold front in.

2013 was a year of uncertainty and challenge, but we survived.  J and I are very blessed with the the people we have in our lives.  We are healthy, we live in a cozy home,  we have clean water to drink and an abundance of food to eat.  J and I are making a living raising cattle and practicing an agricultural way of life.  We face our challenges one day at a time and end the day thinking about all we are grateful for.

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10 Responses to 2013 … Oh What a Year

  1. Darcy says:

    Happy 2014 (a bit early)! I hope that it brings you as many good memories and more that 2013 did. (And I’m sorry to hear of the hard times, but I’m glad you included them in this recap – without the valleys, we couldn’t celebrate the mountain tops.) Enjoy the rest of 2013! 🙂

  2. Bonnie says:

    Happy New Year Robyn! It looks like 2013 was a busy year. I wish you a happy and healthy 2014.

  3. Linda W says:

    A very nice recap! I loved the photo of the little calf. I like reading your blog, because it has stories and images from my home state. 🙂 Wishing you and your family a wonderful 2014!

  4. Wonderful recap of your year….it always tires me out just reading all you accomplish and so much in a year’s time. Happy New Year, Robyn. All the best for you in 2014!!

  5. Linda R says:

    What a busy year you have had. Such a nice way to remember the year that was. Happy 2014!!

  6. cheri says:

    Your 2013 sounds similar to ours! Cows, calves and new puppies. 2014 will probably be about the same. No new puppies though. 🙂
    Cows and calves.
    Already have 8 babies on the ground.
    Happy New Year to you and J. 🙂

  7. Sandra says:

    Happy New Year Robin!!

  8. Buttons says:

    Happy New Year Robyn and J oh yes a year of challenges and joys all mixed up together but we made it and next year will be better. We farmers always count on that optimism that is what keeps us going. All the best my friend. Hug B

  9. Lisa says:

    Happy 2014! I always enjoy reading your blog.

  10. Kim says:

    Here’s wishing that 2014 is all that you hope it will be! My best to you and J for the new year!

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