Working things out

So it has been about two weeks since my last post and that post was from Mom. I guess that is because we were having some “growing pains” as most people call them. It isn’t a bad thing it is just taken some adjusting. – RJ has had this start written for days and asked that I step up and help him out filling everyone in. Well, here it goes!

RJ has had one of his spells where he forgets his priorities. Horses that need worked are being put on hold because he wants to rope. And a few days he didn’t even shear. We have been shearing each day that it hasn’t rained to try and get the sheep all done. It is down to about the last dozen. He is working each morning so he is getting in a time crunch on some days and I have to remind him to get it straight and work the horses that need it. Not the ones that are finished. On the weekends he is at rodeos. Most weeks his weekend starts on Thursday.

It got to a point where I stopped working on his room and called him out on it. His reply shocked me as he said that it would be easier if I was meaner and nagged and griped and lined him and his Dad out more. He told me that I make it to easy for them to take advantage of me with all the laundry, dishes, cooking and such that I do. I just shook my head and told him I do unto others as I would want them to do unto me, not as they have done to me. LOL

Anyway, this weekend he says we are going to finish all the shearing. He said he will be shearing all day that day to get it done. He does have to take some time to teach some 4H kids about chickens on Monday as they are coming to get some babies to show and we will be teaching them what they need to know about carrying them and handling them properly. We will also teach them to put them to sleep and hypnotize them … You know all the fun stuff … LOL

Anyway, RJ has even kind of been in a slump with his roping. I do think it is just because he is off with what he is doing in all areas of his life. He is getting back on track so that is a good thing. I went back to working on his room as well as all my other things I am working on. I am sure he will get it together in the next few days as he gets back on track with his sleep, job and roping.

What I want to be when I grow up

So this Wednesday was our second Farmer’s Market.  As many of you know I take our extra eggs and some wool and any herbs that I have in the garden to the market.  This year I have been harvesting walking onion from the gardens too and taking them as well.  At the Market I am kind of known as the weird one because I don’t have traditional veggies and fruits like everyone else.

This week I took Eggs, Soaps made from the garden as well as goat’s milk soap, Chocolate Mint, Lemon Balm, Spearmint, onions and wool.  I had a good time and visited with some others around the market.  I had brought some “give aways” that I passed out to some fellow vendors.   The community garden only had a few bags of mixed greens so I let the kids use my table as I had plenty of room and they would sell out fast at a buck a bag … It wasn’t worth them putting up a tent and table and … well you get the picture.  Besides I had fun hanging out with them.   I even talked to the manager about a “new product” she was gifted the other day … a lotion bar.  I giggled as I used to make them and don’t know why I stopped.

Anyway, As I sat at my table under my little popup tent after the kids had gone, a gentleman walked up and was asking me about my mint.  I stated it was an herb and then started to give him different uses for it.  However, it was at that moment another vendor pipes up and says “Oh that stuff is just a NOXIOUS WEED!” … So we won’t go into how Rude and uncalled for that was.  Or that isn’t how anyone should ever talk about another vendor’s product … and we won’t discuss the fact that what she said wasn’t true in the least as it is an herb and while it can be an invasive grower it is in no way a noxious weed.

At the time it kind of made me mad for anyone would speak out about other’s products that they didn’t know the real value of but I tried to blow it off.  Later that night RJ and I were talking about how the market went and it came up again.  Okay so I really think it did get under my skin.  I tried to just let it go but by Thursday I had decided called the manager of the market and speak with her about it.  She was very understanding as I explained that it just wasn’t right.  I don’t talk about other people’s products in anything but a positive light and I think I deserve the same treatment.  She agreed and she said she would find a nice way to address the issue with all the vendors so that it doesn’t happen again.

As the day wore on and I dealt with everything happening on the farm, I couldn’t put it out of my mind.  Through the flooding and animal moving, those words just kept nagging me.  It wasn’t upsetting me, it was just playing over and over again in my head and I couldn’t figure out why.  Then it hit me like a ton of bricks.  I needed to find a way to put out GOOD information about my herbs.  Education is the Key! Fight fire with fire … cancel all the bad info being put out with good info so that even if people don’t like or purchase my herbs, they will at least judge them on the Correct information.

So I sat down to work on making some fact cards I could pass out at the market explaining the uses of each herb.  I started with Mint.  However, when I listed all the ways I use the herb, I had a two page essay!  I tried several times to edit it and cut it down to a 4X6 type index card.  No matter how hard I tried it didn’t work.  There were so many uses and so many ways to use it and I couldn’t figure out what was more important to leave in and what I could take out.  I finally got it down to this …


Digestion: Drink Mint Tea to sooth stomach of indigestion or inflammation. Menthol oil derived from mint can be very soothing motion sickness as well

Nausea & Headache: Use mint oil or Balms rubbed on the forehead and nose

Respiratory Disorders Asthma and Coughs: The aroma is effective in clearing up congestion of the nose, throat, bronchi and lungs, as it is a good relaxant and relieves congestion. That being said, using too much mint in this way can also irritate the nose and throat.

Breast Feeding: Mint oil can reduce the nipple cracks and nipple pain associated with Breastfeeding

Depression and Fatigue: Mint can be ingested, applied topically in a salve form, or inhaled as a vapor

Skin Care and Pimples: Mint oil is a good antiseptic. Mint juice is an excellent skin cleanser. It soothes skin and helps to cure infections and itchiness. Its antipruritic properties can be used for treating insect bites. The cooling sensation will relieve irritating sensation and the constant urge to scratch and the anti-inflammatory nature of mint will bring down swelling

Memory Loss: Mint can raise alertness, retention and cognitive function.

Weight Loss: Mint stimulates the digestive enzymes that absorb nutrients from food and consume fat, and turns it into usable energy.

Oral Care: Mint can be rubbed directly on the teeth and gums to refresh the mouth and eliminate dangerous forms of growth. The easiest way to get these results is to simply chew on the leaves.

Allergies and Hay Fever: Extracts from mint leaves have been shown to inhibit the release of certain chemicals, which have been known to aggravate severe nasal symptoms that are associated with hay fever and seasonal allergies.

I know it is still way to long.  No one is going to read that at the local farmer’s market.  So I was thinking I could give them the page when I sell them the mint but that still doesn’t help sell it.  All I could think was I wish I was allowed to sell it as Tea, infusions and Infused Oils I would do much better.  And just here lately I had started to learn about Tinctures.  However, that would make them processed and processed products aren’t allowed at the farmer’s market.  I can’t even sell my herbs if I dehydrate them.

Ever since we had moved home with RJ and his health issues, Granny had been drilling different uses for these herbs into my head.  She had me dehydrating them to allow me to have them year round.  Then she taught me uses for them.  She had me boiling mint to clear RJ’s lungs.  She had me making infused oils to rub on his chest at night.  She had me making infusions to clear my own sinuses.  She had me drinking infused cold tea and just plain hot tea.  She had more uses for the herbs she gave me to grow in my garden then I can remember.  So why couldn’t I make other people understand the value of my herbs??

That is when I remembered those lotion bars the market manager and I had just been talking about at the market.  Then I had one of those very clear ah-ha moments.  No, I can’t sell my herbs in it’s processed forms but I should be able to sell the lotions, salves, lotion bars and soaps I have made with infused oils and Infusions that I use the herbs for in the first place.  And I already take my goat’s milk soap and Veggie and Fruit soaps.  So why not herb products???

Well, I called the market manager to get clarification on the matter.  Would the soaps, lotions, bars and salves be considered processed herbs or would they be considered sell able products??  With a few more calls on her part, the market manager found out that lotions, bars and salves are acceptable sell able market products. However, I have to disclose any and all ingredients and can make no claims of the healing or medicinal properties of the herbs that I use.  I can only list them as an ingredient and that is it.

I got excited.  Then I felt that crash and burn feeling …. What do I know about herbs.  I only know the herbs I grow and use.  That List would consist of lemon balm and several types of mint.  (Oh and a little potted sage plant that I just got as a gift but I don’t know anything about it yet)

After a bit more thought It hit me … So grow, use and learn about so more herbs.  Yup, it was that simple but for me it was a process!!  I don’t have to know everything about every herb.  However, I can learn everything there is to know about different ones I want to grow.  That I can do … So when I Grow up I can be an herbalist … or at least knowledgeable about herbs … LOL

So today I joined an Herb of the month Club.  I will receive a dried herb each month with lots of information about that herb.  I will then turn around and see if it is something that will grow in my zone or would ever have a call to use in my lotions, soaps and salves.  If they are, I will attempt to grow my own herbs and make products out of them.  If they aren’t I will just learn about them and move on.

I also took the time to harvest enough herbs to make Tinctures and oils from the herbs I have.  I also dehydrated some for use in infusions.  This also has me thinking of expanding our herb garden and not worrying so much about my food garden that never really seems to grow much.  After all there are some herbs I know I need that I used to get from Granny ….

Rodeo Weekend

Well, this weekend didn’t go anywhere near how I wanted it to. So Thursday I was one out of the money, Friday All my headers Missed, Saturday I missed my calf, was long in the team roping and was one out of the money in another rodeo and by Sunday I just wasn’t roping very well at all. So the weekend was a bust.

On top of how my Sunday went, a friend asked Dad to go pick up a few steers. That was all fine and dandy … Until the trailer had a blow out. We figured out our spare tire and one rim on that trailer were the wrong size. We will be fixing that soon but Dad got it to work and limped the trailer home.

Monday I was back to working in the morning. Mom wanted to go to a Seed festival but that didn’t happen as some of the roads in the area of the festival were washed out. So she spent her days working around the farm. One of the things she did was she put the man pen turn out back up. After she got the posts in I did help her get the wire up.

Other then that I spent the last two days getting my roping right. I even went to a team roping practice last night. I hope this weekend will go better though. As for today I am headed out to ride and then I am going to get a bit of shearing done while Mom goes to the farmer’s market. As for Dad he is on nights!! So he is just being the plain old Grumpy old man!

Dang Old Goats …

So it has been kind of crazy around here. This here J.O.B. is cutting into my riding time … LOL Oh not to bad but losing the mornings does take some adjusting to. Wednesday I actually didn’t get much done because it Rained … AGAIN! Then Thursday All the horses got their nails done and that night I was up at Southwest City Mo. in both the team roping and the calf roping. Then today it was kind of going to be a repeat of yesterday without the horse shoer.

So Each morning I start out my day working. I an normally home by about Noon. However, when you have to leave about 4 each day for a rodeo, I really am not getting much done. Wednesday I didn’t get much done as it rained again. Mom and I did work in the barn a bit and get a few things cleaned up but nothing to terrible. Dad was only on Nights for Tuesday and then they changed their minds and said they would do the resets next week so that played with his schedule and made him even worse on the grouchy scale.

Mom on the other hand decided to stay out of Dad’s way by working in my room painting walls and putting up shelves and such. I love it. I can’t wait until she is done though. It is going to be sharp. I might even have to ask a few friends to come hang out with me.

Anyway, Thursday was our busiest day. I worked that morning and got home just in time to round up all the horses and get them ready for the horse shoer. All the horses got their hooves trimmed and Coop got her shoes Changed and Storm got her shoes back. Anytime we have a horse off to heal up their shoes are pulled so they can just be a horse on the pasture. After that I got ready to head to Southwest City Mo. for the slack in the rodeo. My partner and I were flagged out in the team roping. They said I didn’t wait for my partner to turn the steer. It was a bad call because I have it on video and he did turn it. However, we did break out so bad call or not we wouldn’t have done any good anyway. As for the Calf roping I was sitting third but they have two performances to go so I will pray that I can stay in it and draw a paycheck.

This morning I worked and then came home to get lunch and then head out to meet up with my partner again and head to a team roping. Now there is one thing that I have left out that I need to add in that has made us even busier. You see the triplets, Holly and Gonzo have all been escaping. And I mean no more then you get everyone where they are suppose to be then the one you got in first is already out where it shouldn’t be.

We will start with Gonzo. He has been in every pen from the Man pen to the pasture and he always finds a way to get out, get into the garden or get on the road. Mom fixed his little red wagon though. He is now calling the time out pen home. Until he can learn to stay in he will be in that pen. Mom says that we will tie him out from time to time and then we are going to try the cinder block to keep him in. However, for now Mom isn’t feeling well and he is grounded.

As for Holly she has lost all time out on the pasture until she can remember to stay in or I can find the hole she keeps going through to get on the road. She also take the trips with her and Mom doesn’t like it. So she was put in the milking pen and not allowed to go to the pasture. That just left the trips that kept getting out. You would think that Holly would call them back in but she didn’t

So Mom worked all the fence between the pasture and the goat pen. Turns out the three had several spots that they were using to go UNDER the fence. Then they would go out to the hole that Holly showed them and be out faster then Mom could get them back in and through the house to go do anything else. So as of this afternoon Mom had managed to keep them in the milk pen … I am praying that they will stay in the rest of the evening. Mom even sealed up the gates to keep them from going through them.

In Mom’s defense she did wake up with a terrible headache and chasing goats isn’t exactly what you want to do when you have a headache that hurts so bad it is making you throw up ….

WOW …. Thank Goodness I missed that!

So today was interesting. I started out going to work. Last night Dad said that since he is starting on Nights this week He would do chores in the morning. Nights ALWAYS puts Dad in a bad Mood so I should have known better then to take him up on it. Somehow, From what I can figure, Mom made Dad breakfast while he did chores. He took twice as long to do chores then either Mom or I so his breakfast got cold and wasn’t very good. When Mom asked what took him so long things went really south as Dad remarked something about the Caballo. When Mom defended the horse Dad some how ended up arguing with Mom about “the good horse” (that is what he calls Coop) and him saying all the others were junk.

So if any of you know Mom and most of you do … you know that she says every horse has potential and no horse is junk. Not to mention the Mustangs are Mom’s dream. By the time I got home Mom was super mad and Dad was sulking. Mom had made me lunch so I ate in silence before Mom announced that she would be working the horses with me until all are broke and Dad eats his words.

I have bad news for Dad … Mom is right about this one. There isn’t a bad horse on the place. Anyway, Mom took to horse training for the day. So today Mom started with her Mustangs. Caballo not only got a good brushing and de-tangling of his mane but he also too the weight of a saddle up on his back. Not to mention he even learned he could move around with it on. Then Star not only got a good grooming but she also took a saddle but she was cinched up with a front cinch.

Then when she went to work Derf and get a Saddle on him … She found he had a rib out. Sometimes a horse can pop a rib out rolling or just bucking. In time it will go back in the same way it came out. The only thing it effected today was that he only got to take a pad and not a saddle.

After she worked the three horses she left me to ride the others while she went and looked things over in the garden. She found that the Beehive had taken a hit.

It all went back together just fine but it does have a huge crack in one side of the bottom tank.

Mom says for now it will be fine but she will start looking for another old on at garage sales and junk sales. She Also said that she may have to build some sort of protection for it in the future.

John Wayne and Pizza

So yesterday wasn’t much of a special day as it rained most the day and it was cold and windy. So after work I hung around the house and watched some old John Wayne movies. Then today I had some catching up to do. After work and lunch I worked the horses.

With the rain there really isn’t much I can get done out side. And let’s face it outside is where I want to be. Me and house work really don’t go together … Okay, so we can go together but I don’t want us to … LOL Anyway, yesterday the whole family kind of took it easy. With the storms and rain keeping Mom up for the last few days she was dragging. Dad is having to go on nights this coming week starting tomorrow so his schedule is all messed up and as for me … I was up at 5am to take care of Kevin’s horses as he is at a show in Oklahoma City this weekend. So what does all that mean?

It means the family popped in The Cowboys starring John Wayne and ordered up a Pizza for dinner … LOL. I know that isn’t exciting to most but in our house that is a real treat. As for today that means I had to play catch up. Not really I just had to fit in Riding the horses and getting Storm back in shape.

There was one thing that happened today that was pretty cool. Bathroom Chick officially rejoined the flock in the barn. When we put her in she blended right in and you couldn’t tell her apart once we looked away. Buttercup is also learning to go outside with the dogs but we have learned that she doesn’t make it through the night without accidents. It seems every night she has an accident in her kennel on her pillow. Mom washes it up each morning but Mom can’t wait for her to be able to make it through the night …