We are finally home from the Ohio Beef Expo.
It was an amazing week, but...
I am tired.
I have a huge pile of really stinky laundry...
And we have done the dump and run all week...so my house is a mess!
So, I am going to keep this short and sweet...because I need to sleep...and get caught up.
This is my favorite picture from the week.
This is the mini boys.
These are the boys that showed Miniature Herefords in the B.E.S.T. this season.
There was a girl too, but she wasn't able to show yesterday.
These boys have become fast friends.
To be honest, I think they were a little disappointed yesterday when it was time to show...
They had to quit throwing the football.
Yesterday was a really long day...with lots of waiting. These boys made the best of it and had fun together all day.
This is why we show.
Yes, showing cattle teaches them so many things, and they love to show.
But...the friendships they form is so much more important than any ribbons or awards.
This group of boys have been great together. They are competitive, but they have all lost at some point. They all have great attitudes, congratulate each other, and are genuinely happy when they see one of the others succeed.
Until we move in to the 2018 Ohio Beef Expo.
I can't believe it is already here.
It seems like we were just starting the B.E.S.T. season, and now we are heading to our final show.
But before it ends...
We have two more chances to put our cows through the ring.
This week, Apollo, our 9 month old bull, got his new bull bling.
The vet was out to do health papers for the Ohio Beef Expo and some pregnancy checks, so we had him go ahead and add a bull ring for Apollo.
So what is a bull ring and why do we use them?
With work and school, we are apart all week. When the weekend comes, we try to do as much as we can together as a family.
Show weekends are always family weekends.
Sometimes we have to divide and conquer, so there are some weekends that I will stay home one day to just keep up on the laundry, cleaning and grocery shopping. But, I am always there for show day.
However...the last 2 weekends have not been divide and conquer....but divide and sleep.
I came down with the creeping crud.
It's not the flu...thank goodness!
But, it is the nasty, won't go away, symptoms I haven't had since I was a kid cold.
I am two weeks in, and just when I think I am getting better, I get a new and bizarre symptom.
The last 2 weekends have been back to back Sunday show weekends. We always dread this point of the show season, because we are almost at burnout point, and then we have to push through two weekends in a row.
The only thing that keeps us going is knowing that pushing hard now, means we get to finish our season a couple of weeks earlier than in the past.
I had every intention of being at the shows the last 2 Sundays. I hate to miss my kids showing. I love to watch them and be there to support them.
But, my weekends have just been bad. Bad enough that I don't feel guilty not leaving the couch all day.
It was only a few short years ago that we made our showing debut.
In July of 2012, Isaac showed a Miniature Hereford at the Knox county fair as part of his 4-H project. Boy, were we in over our heads.
It was our vet that encouraged us to show at the Ohio Beef Expo. After being completely overwhelmed at the county fair, there was no way we were going to embarrass ourselves at a show as big as the Beef Expo.
We talked ourselves into it, and in 2013 we attended the Ohio Beef Expo for the first time.
Looking back, it was the best decision we ever made...or the worst.
After a couple of months away from the show ring, we began our new show season the week before Thanksgiving at N.A.I.L.E..
Then, the day after Thanksgiving we started the new B.E.S.T. season.
For those of you that are new here, the B.E.S.T. is a youth program sponsored by the Ohio Cattlemen's Association. The season begins in November and ends in March at the Ohio Beef Expo. We show approximately every 2 weeks at different locations all over Ohio. You accumulate points at each show and then a banquet is held at the end of the year to award the participants with the highest points in each division.
The first show of the season is held in Lima, Ohio. It is one of the most attended shows of the season and it is always fun to see all the new cows. You never know what is going to show up, and it is your first look at your competition for the year.
We spent most of last week in Louisville, Kentucky at the North American International Livestock Expo.
We were planning to take 5 cows to Louisville, but the night before we left, we made the decision to keep two of the younger calves at home.
We knew it was going to be hard to repeat the success of last year, but we were determined to have fun no matter what. After the near fitter catastrophe of last year, we were concerned that Daniel and Nick getting 5 cows into the ring by themselves would make them lose out on the fun.
And....we all know when daddy ain't happy...nobody is happy.
It was the right decision.
Later this week we will be heading to Louisville, Kentucky for the North American International Livestock Expo.
This week is always bitter sweet for us...
It is the start of show season, which is always exciting...
But, it is also the end of the peace and calm...at least until March.
At some point, you are going to lose.
Our goal is always to win, but you can rest assured that all winners have either lost a lot on the road to winning, or they are going to lose at some point down the road.
I think we have learned the most from the times that we have lost. One of the most important things we have learned from losing is how to be a good loser.
We moved out of the Knox County Fair, spent 2 days trying to catch up at home, and then moved right in to The Ohio State Fair.
It has been a whirlwind couple of weeks.
Hello! I am Heather... the city girl turned mom to manure loving country boys. My husband and I both grew up in the city, but spent weekends visiting grandparents in the country. We are first generation farmers who learn best by almost always doing things the hard way. I hope you enjoy following along with our adventures down on the farm.