Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I am going to be gone for a couple of days. One of the people who started this whole obession with agriculture and politics both is turning 80- My grandfather who owned one of the largest greenhouses in the Midwest.

I am also hoping to see the other portion of my family- the ones who gave me one of my first horses, showed me what hard work really is by owning a dairy. I am excited.

It goes back to the whole nature vs. nurture. Or in this case the combination of nature and nurture. I was born in ag and will probably die in it too (hopefully later rather than sooner) :) I have to bring the next generation up in agriculutre whether the Department of Labor says it is OK or not.

I will try and get on and maybe post something.
Have a great weekend ALL!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Possible good news

For all of you who haven't commented on the Department of Labor's ridiculous proposed rules-- they may extend the deadline.  Many groups have been leaning on the DOL to make sure the public comment period is open for another 60-90 days. 

Just a reminder- the picture you see would be considered illegal under the new laws.  A small child, feeding hay, in a feedlot situation, not on a property owned by her parents!  The thought of such child abuse allowed to continue. 
Of course this one would be illegal also.  Riding on horseback and moving cows.  She wasn't even 16 months let alone the required 16 years.  Shocking isn't it!  Seriously, get your comments in.  Give rural kids the break they need to continue traditions, learn how to care for animals, and continue supplying food to the country.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Corner Post- conundrums

I enjoy writing this blog.  There are times I put out information on laws, rules, regulations etc.  There are times I just want to type about what is going on in my life.  I don't know what people want to read about.  I think my life is exciting.  I mean, with two kids how could it not be?

I laugh because sometimes it is the only thing that keeps me from going crazy.  We now have 8 barn cats, a year ago we had one (Blackjack)!  The neighbor thought she should share one of our offspring (Two) with us.  Then, the nice ladies at one of the county offices found a stray (Boots), "That we just don't know what to do with!"  Then, my husband's boss shows up with five more (Meow, Yowl, Pus, Chavez, and Homer)!  You can guess which ones the two year old named.

The funny part was, I was happy with just Blackjack.  He was a special tomcat.  Not like any other I had been around.  Blackjack didn't tomcat.  The ladies came to him.  We would find him with a female out in the barn, showing her the best "mousing" and how to get the free handout.

The good news about the cats is Tay's chores have gone up exponentially.  She must now feed all the cats and get them water.  Well, at least they will be chores until the Department of Labor makes that illegal too.

Hope you are having a great day.  I am going to get a bag of cat food, some hay twine, and laugh.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

More information on posting comments on proposed rules

You may submit comments, identified by RIN 1235-AA06, by either one of the following methods: Electronic comments: through the Federal eRulemaking Portal: Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Mail: Wage and Hour Division, U.S. Department of Labor, Room S- 3502, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210.

Instructions: Please submit one copy of your comments by only one method. All submissions received must include the agency name (Wage and Hour Division) and Regulatory Information Number identified above for this rulemaking (1235-AA06). All comments received will be posted without change to, including any personal information provided. Consequently, prior to including any individual's personal information such as Social Security Number, home address, telephone number, e-mail addresses and medical data in a comment, the Department urges commenters carefully to consider that their submissions are a matter of public record and will be publicly accessible on the Internet. It is the commenter's responsibility to safeguard his or her information. Because we continue to experience delays in receiving mail in the Washington, DC area, commenters are strongly encouraged to transmit their comments electronically via the Federal eRulemaking Portal at or to submit them by mail early. For additional information on submitting comments and the rulemaking process, see the "Public Participation" heading of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal at

Department of Labor Proposed Rule

The government is at it again... Trying to micromanage every part of life.  The newest is 29 CFR parts 570 and 579.  It is a proposed rule to limit the amount of work kids can do on a farm/ranch not soley owned by there parents.  Strictly parents- grandparents don't count.

This rule would make it illegal for anyone under the age of 16 to:

1.  Herd livestock on horseback
2. Sort livestock on horseback
3. Operate equipment 
4.  Operate any vehicle, tractor, feed truck, or ATV
5.  Operate any tool that is not powered by hand- no cordless or corded screwdrivers, no sewing machines operated by foot pedal etc.
6. Move hay bales

And the riduculousness continues.

The implications could be outstanding when looking at 4-H, FFA, Grange or other youth organizations.  Not to mention, it doesn't just apply to paid children but also those who work without pay.  No helping the neighbor, no brandings, no nothing!  No work on the farm or ranch by kids under 16.

I encourage everyone to tell the DOL what they think of their proposed rules:

or Write your comment to:

U.S. Dept. of Labor

200 Constitution Ave.

Washington, DC 20210

1-866-487-2365 (4USADOL)

This needs to be stopped!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Life

Now this is the life for man and beast.  A gorgeous fall day, grass up to your belly, and humble family time.

A little background on this pasture...  Five years ago, this was a degrade stream.  The channel itself had been incised (cut down into the ground) and the crossing (not seen) under the road had made fish passage impossible. 

This poor stream was the result of the government coming in and straightening it- NOT IMPROPER GRAZING.  Back in the middle of the 20th century, the army corps of engineers thought streams should be straight without the meanders and curves.  Doing so, increases the amount of power behind large water events, like spring run off.  Thus, they take out large portions of the bank and dig deeper into the soil, reducing the water table.

Putting the stream back on top of the meadow, and increasing the amount of curves in it, reduces the power of the water and rises the water table.  As you can see here, vegetation is abundant.  This pasture actually needs to be grazed much harder than it is.  The grass is starting to mat and the vegetation is getting decadent, reducing its potential for wildlife habitat.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Applied Reproductive Strategies Conference

Headed to Boise last week for a Conference on applied strategies for Reproduction in beef cows.  It was fun.  I got to see how the other side lived.  Those who can run to the grocery store or actually go shopping and are able to try things on.

All and all I learned some stuff- not related to social aspects.  Calves are high, inputs are high.  BUT... we did have an interesting talk by Larry Corah- Certified Angus Beef.

Larry is optimistic about how the cattle market is going to be.  He is optimistic about the changes cattlemen have made in the last 25-30 years and he is optimistic about the changes we can make to continue producing a product that consumers love so much.

Larry discussed how quality grades (amount of marbling) have gone up and how yield grades have gone down (amount of trim), generally speaking.  He was very pleased with the increase in people who have said "I have had a pleasant experience eating this product"  He was also pleased with the grilling market.

So, to cattle producers- I tip my hat.  To beef consumers- keep at it!  It is a wholesome nutritious product that is made locally.  :)