Ridgetop - our place and how we muddle along

Bruce

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I had told him to order last week but he put it off and now of course
Come on Ridge, everyone knows NOW is the time to buy swimsuits. Winter wear is sold in August. Clearly no one would need to buy it when it is cold! I bought my insulated Carhartt overalls at TSC in November (for my in-laws to give me for Christmas).
 

Ridgetop

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Friday:
I will watch for summer sales! If I ever go back to Washington State to visit relatives (not for a while) there is a wonderful thrift store chain that has excellent clothes. Got a lot of great brands still with purchase tags on them! I try to invest in winter wear when I am there. Lots of skiers so lots of good quality ski wear and down vests and jackets.

In the meantime, I won't be delighting Texans by my imitation of a walking eggplant. ;)The winter overalls I bought are black. On the upside they are more slimming. However, since I intend to wear them over a layer of other clothing, they won't slim me enough. Since only the goats, Baymule and DH will witness my unshapely figure while building sheds and stringing fence, no problem!

Yesterday DH worked on taxes. He had me give him the information on the Yelm rental expenses. I put everything together last October, so I had to reread some of the stuff to remember what was included. Finished that part fast. Still have to work on the Texas rentals but are waiting on the info from our manager. Got some of that this am and will compile it for DH. Then I have a box of docs that I have gone through and pulled figures out of that I need to go over with the tax preparer. Some refi stuff, as well as the 1031 figures. We have an appointment.

Yesterday I got the plastic rolling storage box into the house. I put all DH's thermal shirts, his overalls, my thermal shirts and leggings, wool socks, heavy pjs, jackets, and gloves in it ready to load into the trailer. I also got out 2 tool chests and washed them ready for packing with the Skil saw, hand tools, and fence building stuff. Not sure if we will need much in the way of clamps but will toss in a few of them along with the post levels, squares, etc. Our battery tools have their own plastic cases that clip together. Won't need a lot of the tools we would need if we were doing renos on a house but Baymule and her son have beaten us to the punch on that!

Only thing left to do is to bring home the trailer and remove the banquette benches and then start loading folding table, chairs, toolboxes, clothing, food, electric heater (saves on propane costs), and other miscellaneous gear. I also have to remember t bring a lot of yarn so zi can continue knitting banket fr the grandchildren. They really seem to like those cuddly throw size blankies for watching TV. Good thing since that is the only thing I can knit. I really should take some knitting classes. One of the spinners in our wool spinning class taught me to use circular needles to knit socks. I still can't turn a heel though, so they are tube socks. Ugh! Knitting while DH drives is very calming.

Saturday:
Got up to TV footage of terrible storm on east coast. Hope Mini Horses and Farmerjan are ok in Vrginia. Not to mention Bruce in Vermont!!!

DH said the temps in Texas are in the 70's. Told him he was mistaken although they might hit that in some areas. However, not backing out of bringing our woolies. Clothing not sheep. LOL

DH got a haircut yesterday. I had offered to do it, but he refused. I used to cut the boys hair all the time and shear the sheep. One time when the human hair clippers burnt up I had to use the goat clippers on the boys. They were perfectly happy with the job. I don't know why he is afraid of me with scissors in my hand. Anyway, his hair and beard were so long that he looked like a homeless man wandering around in his sweatpants. Very sad. Now he looks really good but is suffering from driving himself and being put for a haircut too soon. He is back in his recliner under a blanket moaning about feeling weak and coughing last night. I told him to have cough medicine before bed but NO! he is a MAN! Testosterone rages in his veins (glands?). Anyway, my big sweet guy is back in his recliner watching the snowstorm on TV. The news for next week is showing a huge snowstorm raging down from the north and sweeping across Texas and up through the mid-eastern states. Might delay our trip another week if there is to much snow on the road. Probably it will have disappeared by the time we leave, but this will give me more time to remove that banquette and pack. Our friends have been travelling fo severa months and just got back. They said there was a lot of snow in Flagstaff AZ on the way home and when they got back to their place in Bear Valley Springs (not too far out of town but higher elevations) their road was snowed in. Nancy walked in and got the tractor to clear the road. Then she hit the water pipes! Massive gusher! They had to turn off the water for several days so they could get it repaired!

It is clouding up here and getting colder too. Not sure if we will get any more rain. I certainly hope so. The hills are already green and you can really see the coyote trails worn into the gully sides approaching our fences.


IMG_6925 (1).jpg
The sheep and Josie the Mule are going into the gully to get the new tender green stuff. The dogs are working on 3 sides of the property every night and the coyotes are singing to annoy them.
 

Baymule

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I'm hoping you won't need the warm clothes, but in February, it's best to be prepared for whatever.

Chris finished my bedroom. For all his good qualities, trim seems NOT to be one of them. I'm sure he is proud of his efforts, especially since it looks like he put maybe a couple hundred thousand nails in each 7' piece! :barnie They are not mitered, not miter joined, just blunt end to end. But I'm going to call it good. There is still trim work to be done and you can show me the finer points of proper trim work.

I've got to drag out all my reciepts and get taxes ready for CPA too. This. Week. If I move my piles, I'll never find them again, so MUST get my act together this week!
 

Ridgetop

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No problem with doing the trim. Don't let him do any more. Trim is easy even if the furniture is already in place in the room. Just move it out from the wall a couple feet and the trim can go in easily. I painted the office, laid the new floor, and installed all new trim in the office by moving the furniture back and forth! With the brad nailer you don't even need room to swing a hammer. super easy! I am just disappointed that we couldn't get there in time to do more and help you move. :hit

The ski pants arrived and I tried them on over my jeans and they fit. Wearing them over just thermal undies they should have lots of room for working. They were less than half the Carhart price too so for the amount of time I will have to wear them in Texas until we move there, I am pleased. Once living in Texas I will invest in a pair of Carharts.

DD2 came over with Baby Annabel yesterday for a visit. She said that her birth sister, Amanda, and husband are moving to Anna, Texas, next month. Amanda is expecting her first baby in April or May. Anna is due north of Dallas although I am not sure how far away that is from us in Yantis. But we will have surrogate grandbabies in Texas. And they will have a surrogate aunt and uncle for holidays in Texas so it will feel like they have some family close to them for emergencies. :D =D DD1 said DSIL2 wants to move to Texas but they need to get their finances in order first. He is also getting a promotion at work so wants to do well there. Time will tell.

Tomorrow we will move Smalley ram back into the breeding pen with the ewes that might have been bred during the time the crayon fell out of the backing on Lewis. The last marked ewe was done on 1/13 and we discovered that the crayon had fallen out or dissolved on 1/24 when we moved him out of the pen. So an 11 day gap during which he might have bred or rebred a couple of the ewes. The ones that were marked on 12/21 and 12/22 and did not remark before 1/13 are probably settled so they can come out of the pen. That will leave 5 ewes in with Smalley. One of the ewes I am wondering about since she has been exposed to many rams and not marked or lambed. She will be 2 years old in May so she may be off to the sales. I bought her mother with her at side. However, her mama is not breeding on the 8 month schedule either. This White Dorper flock are from Oregon and the breeder only breeds on a once a year schedule since he has a large commercial flock as well. He is on the NSIP program and I wanted this ewe in the flock for the import bloodlines, but if she doesn't fit my breeding schedule, I won't be keeping this one. She is larger than my others, and a bit wild too. I love the ram I bought from this flock and his lambs though so will probably confine future purchases to rams. At any rate having the lambings spaced out in this group will be better since Iwas worried about having enough jugs for the lambing ewes. After losing a lamb last month due to having a second ewe in the pen (accidentally stepped on him puncturing a gut) I don't want two ewes penned together in the small jugs. Looks like I will have lambs coming from March 28 through June. The ones in the barn now will rebreed in March/April for January sales, and I will be able to separate groups for production in winter for spring sales. :fl

I have told DH that we need to check with our tax person about this 1031 thing. I want to find out if leasing the pastures wiwthut the house will fulfill the 1031 rental requirement. Then we can move to Texas and live in our trailer while we renovate the house - repairs, painting, new shower in family bath (tub only there), and some drywall repairs, new flooring, etc. Also want to enclose the current roofed rear porch for additional living room space. We will add on a larger screened in deck off the new living space. Screening it in will make the deck more usable and we will add ceiling fans too. That may have to wait since we will use the contractor who was the home inspector on our purchase and according to Texas law we can't use him for construction for 1 or 2 years after the inspection date. DS2 and DDIL2 are fine with renting the house here from us. They will pay the insurance, taxes and mortgage as well as utilities. It will still be cheaper for them than renting a 3 BR apt or house, and they will have a lot more space. It will give us more time to move stuff back to the ranch, and give us time to live in Texas, make friends, and make sure we are happy there without our family. I am getting anxious to move before DH decides we are too old for this new adventure.
 

Ridgetop

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DDIL1 is probably going to home school if the bill passes in California that all children have to be vaxed against Covid. Her kids already had it last summer. She is also thinking about starting her own 4-H club in the area since DS3 went to a meeting and said the people were very cliquish and not welcoming. DDIL1 says that she has heard the same thing from other people that wanted to join and were snooted by current clubs. She did not know that she could start a new club and is excited. Particularly after I counted off 10 projects for which she, DS3, and her sister have experience and contacts for leaders. She did not realize she had so much experience in various areas! She also knows a few other families with kids that would be interested in joining 4-H and both DGS3 and 4 will talk to their friends in school and encourage them to join.

If she starts a club, I told her that I would give the grandsons lambs for market classes. They might not win champion since they will be White Dorpers and not black faced long legged stylish lambs, but they will make some money on them without having to spend a ridiculous amount on a club lamb. Also for the first couple years they will be learning lamb care and showmanship so getting free lambs is a good way to start. I also told her that if she has a few more kids for the market lamb project I would donate lambs to the club and the kids could pay the club a minimal amount for the lambs. That makes money for the club, the first timer kids get lambs cheaply, and they can exhibit at the fair. I will claim it on our taxes as a donation to 4-H. Later when the project kids are experienced, they can decide to buy black faced lambs to go after the championship. Our entire family will go up to watch them show and bid on their animals - or put on "add on" $$. She was very excited since she did not know you could start your own club with just a minimum of members. Also told her that I would learn any new requirements in record books, do a record book workshop for the club, and help her know how to put together a medal winning record book so she can teach the club members. Also, will sew up green collars for the girls in the club. Another small moneymaker for the club getting started. Maybe my grandsons will be in 4-H before we move back to Texas. I would like to see them compete. :love
 

Ridgetop

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Also heard that our niece's daughter is marrying a Texas boy and will be living in Allen TX. Or possibly Athens TX - DH's hearing is getting worse. Allen is north of Dallas while Athens is south. Ether is on the eastern side so not too far from us in Texas miles. She is getting married in Tyler next year or this summer (again DH's hearing) and is sending us an invitation. We'll see at that time. At any rate, a couple of relatives and DH's sister and BIL will be coming to see her.

Wednesday - Another HISSY FIT! :he:he:he:barnie:barnie:barnie:somad:somad:somad:rant:rant:rant
Truck is back in the shop for oil spraying out from underneath when brought 5th wheel home and parked it. :mad::mad::oops::th

Then sadness :hit:hit:hit:(:(:(

A young ewe that we separated out from breeding pen was bred and almost due and got injured when separating them. She was bleeding bright red when we put her in the barn and next day had a dead lamb born feet first. The lamb was full term, so I missed writing her down somewhere along the line which is weird because I keep a white board in the office and out everyone on it when in the breeding pen. However, since a lot of same age ewelings have the same color ear tags (sire's color) it is often easy to misread one. She had a pretty little udder so we knew she was pregnant just not how far along or we would not have messed with her so close to lambing. Anyway, nice size ewe lamb born dead. If I had known she was due I would have tried to pull the lamb when she started bleeding but I didn't want to mess with her if she was only a few months along. My fault regardless for not having proper records.

We also seem to have an extra ewe on the field. DS1 counted one extra than I hve papers in my book. It is possible that I pulled a ewe's papers from my book thinking she was sold so now have to go back and write down all the ear numbers so we can double check and identify the extra ewe. :idunno
 

Ridgetop

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Thursday - Another HISSY FIT!!! :barnie:barnie:barnie:somad:somad:somad:rant:rant:rant:he:he:he:th
Trailer finally back from shop so went to set up to prep trailer for trip and remove Banquette seating. Batteries are bad so replaced them.
!!! No electrical hookups are working even though plugged into house current. Turned on batteries and the slide out worked and the jacks. They should work on AC current too. So checked inside - no lights on either AC or DC then the fridge won't work, the stove won't work (electric ignition, hood fan and lights) the outlets work on AC current but the whole ACDC is not working. I pulled out all fuses and double checked them - good. Checked everything - the converter is making a small, odd sound, and is getting hot as well. Might need new converter or when the shop pulled off the siding on the rear, they may have messed up some wiring. Anyway, trailer has to go back to the shop but can't because no truck to tow it!!! Why no truck? IT IS IN THE OTHER SHOP!!! :barnie:barnie:he:he:rant:rant:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad:somad

Only good thing is that 18323 - ewe I was worried about because she never bred or lambed actually lambed last night in the field pen. Happened when DS1 was bringing in sheep to feed. She was already in night fold lambing. Had a ewe lamb and DGD1 rushed out to dry it off and carry it to barn with mama following. Within an hour she produced a ram lamb as well. :) Day endedon a happier note.

She was destined for the sale yard because she will be 2 in May and never lambed. Also never marked in the breeding pen! However, when we separated them out, I saw that she had a nice udder too so was hopeful. But again, no marking so no idea when she was due. These are the last of Smalley's lambs. Anything born after March 28 is sired by Lewis. Hope I didn't miss anyone else. Nothing on the board, but went back in my calendar and sure enough, 332 marked exactly on September 11. Just was never put on the board, or was accidentally removed. The lambs are very small, and she is a large ewe. She was bought as a newborn with her mother so am glad that she has produced lambs so she can stay along with her ewe lamb.

DH and I are now considering just driving back in our SUV with our tools, winter clothes, and staying in motels. DS1 is helping me remove the banquette which is good since it seems not as easily done as I originally thought. However, once started, got to continue and finish the job. Or replace the paneling. No! Not an option! DH can't fit in the banquette anymore (I barely fit ;)). The benches are not comfortable, and the table is too high for comfortable eating. It's gotta go.
 

Ridgetop

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Talking with DS1 and DH about trip. Hope to be on the road by Tuesday in either the SUV or possibly DS2's Black Dragon. Have to talk to him about whether he wants us to make a long trip in his truck though. Also, I don't like the Black Dragon. It sits higher than our 4WD truck and sometimes I tend to fall out of it!!!

Will pack this weekend and get everything ready to load. :weeeComing to Texas.
 
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