Friday, December 19, 2014

5 on Friday.

What a week! 

There was a lot going on this week, and while it was a good week - I'm looking forward to a little bit of down time next week during the Christmas holiday.

I only have to work next Monday & Tuesday - woot woot!

With that - I thought I'd share a bit of the craziness!

1. Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Our office had it's official Pendleton Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting on Tuesday, along with an Open House.  The Chamber Ambassadors all show up in their western dusters and cowboy hats, and cut the ribbon.  The picture here shows us all after the ribbon was cut (their photographer was taking the picture during the cutting) and it was neat to get to be a part of that. 
We sure love our new office a lot, and we are very thankful for our new building.

2. ARC/PLC Meetings

We had a series of three meetings this week, one right after another at BMCC in their computer lab.  We're rolling out a new series of farm support programs at work, and have been working really hard to get producers educated about the choices they are having to make.  I've held probably ten meetings prior to this series, but this was our first one in a computer lab where producers could work on the computers and load their own information.  Jordan Maley from OSU Extension was also there to help, and he did a great job leading producers thru the web tools.  We were pleased with the turnout, and I think everyone left with a pretty good idea about how the new programs fit into their farming scenarios.

3. Christmas Goodies.

How fun was it to come home to this on my kitchen counter?  We've been blessed with chocolates (thank you Doc!), caramel corn (thank you Leah!), coffee (thanks Tess!) and a multitude of Christmas cards stuffed in our PO box. 

I just love getting Christmas cards. 

The most relaxing part of my day - or sometimes early morning if I run out of time at night - is opening Christmas cards and getting to see pictures of our friends, and read updates about their lives.  It truly is a gift.

4. Speaking of Christmas cards....

Ours went out on Monday!  I don't know if Costco shorted me, or if I just plain ran out - but I didn't have enough cards this year to go around, so if I missed getting you a card - I apologize.

5. Crazy for Christmas.

Double M had their Christmas party last night (more pictures coming in a post next week), my office had their Christmas party on Wednesday and tonight was our annual "Drunko Bunco" where we do our annual gift of exchange.

Who am I kidding - we call it a gift exchange, but everyone brings a bottle of alcohol.  :)  Hence the name "Drunko Bunco"!

Also - as of today I have zero presents wrapped.

Or shipped.

And the majority of our family lives out of state.

And let's not even talk about the fact that I cannot figure out what to get Clint.

It's been a little crazy here - just work, normal ranch stuff, putting in embryos, & producer meetings - and when you add in the holidays and all of it's gatherings, well it's been a little crazy. But we love it - and wouldn't change this life for anything.

So our gifts may not reach you on Christmas (maybe we can just say we're extending the holidays?!?) but we want you all to know that we are thankful for you in this season.


I hope everyone enjoys their weekend & the remainder of the holiday season.

Keep living the dream!

And have a great weekend!


How fun is it to receive {fun} mail?

Lots of fun, is the correct answer if you were wondering.  ;)

I participated in my third Crystal Cattle Beauty Swap and this time I was paired with Sarah from Texas!  She was so generous, and sent me a package filled with fabulous items!  It was in my box when I got home from NFR and I'l be honest - I tore right into it to see what she had sent.  :)


Sarah was so generous, and in my package she sent me a Younique 3D Fiber Lashes set, two nail polishes in a glittery silver and red (perfect for the holidays!), a Maybelline Baby Lips lip balm in an awesome flavor called "Quenched", a bottle of Bath & Body Works Sweet Pea lotion, Nivea's Express Hydration hand cream and some Christmas candy treats!

Note - There was more Christmas candy.  
Don't blame a girl for being hungry.
And it was delicious! :)
I have heard a lot about the Younique Fiber Lashes and was intrigued.  I'll be honest - I waited until I had a bit of time to play around with them so that if I screwed up I wouldn't look like a raccoon.

This meant I had to wait until I wasn't rushing around in the morning to get to work on time because I had snoozed WAY longer than I should have.


Anyway - I had a bit of free time last night before the Double M Ranch Christmas Party and I thought I'd get my glitz on.  These fibers are SO easy to apply and really made my lashes look full!  I shouldn't have worried about looking like a raccoon - the process is super simple and similar to applying regular mascara.

Before - with only mascara applied from the morning

Halfway thru - the eye on the right has the 3D fibers

Afterwards!  Full eyelashes!  It almost looks like I'm wearing a set of false eyelashes, they're so full.
If you want to know more about the lashes - check out Sarah's site here.

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I also immediately started using the Quenched (it's the blue tube) Maybelline Baby Lips lip balm and it is the bomb dot com.


My lips have been super dry and chapped recently (even with using my EOS) but two days after I started using this balm in the morning they are back in business and as smooth as ever.


I can't wait to try the rest of the items - hopefully I'll have a chance next week to paint my nails during my holiday break - and I know the lotion will get put to good use once we start calving and our hands start cracking.

As often as we wash our hands during calving in the cold weather, we're constantly battling chapped or cracked hands and the Nivea cream Sarah sent looks like it will be put to good use!

Thank you Sarah for all of the items you sent!

Check out more of the Beauty Swaps here on Crystal's blog.

See my Beauty Swap #1 here and Beauty Swap #2 here.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

UCCA Ball.

2014 Umatilla Cattlemen's Annual Meeting & Ball
Pendleton, OR

Every year on the second Saturday in December, the Umatilla Cattlemen get together for their annual meeting and Cattlemen's Ball.
The morning is filled with meetings & committee reports, lunch is served at noon and the scholarship & award winners are announced, informational sessions fill the afternoon and then we all head to the convention center for the evening ball.

Clint and Mike have been talking about putting together a group of donated heifers for sale as bred heifers for awhile now, and presented their idea to the cattlemen on Saturday morning.  It was approved as a fundraiser for the Scholarship Committee, and their goal is to have 40-45 heifers donated by February.  Those heifers will be put on feed donated by Double M, bred and then sold in as a lot of bred heifers. 
The funds raised will be put into the scholarship fund, and the goal is to raise $100,000 - $125,000 so that we can have a larger sum of money earning interest.  That money is then put towards awarding scholarships each year.
Everyone was on board with the idea - so now it's just a matter of getting letters out and heifers committed.  Exciting!

New OCA Exec. Director Jerome Rosa gave us an update on state actions.

Thank you Shevon for ALL that you do!

Melinda Platt giving an update on the Scholarship Committee

Each year, the Scholarship Committee awards one or two scholarships to youth involved in the beef industry from Umatilla or Morrow County, and the scholarship is named in memory of a past Umatilla Cattleman.  This year there were two scholarships presented - one in memory of Ty Hansell and one in memory of Larry Rew.
Francie Hansell (Ty's widow) and her family were at the luncheon, and spoke about Ty and his love of the cattle industry before the scholarship was award to Kylee Jensen (below).

Judy Rew was also at the luncheon, and spoke about her deceased husband Larry Rew and how much he loved the cattle industry as well.  Patrick Linnell was the recipient of that scholarship, but he is at school at CSU and wasn't able to be in attendance, although his family was.

Mr. Hansell & Mr. Rew were both upstanding, fine men and it was an honor to get to hear about their legacy as scholarships were awarded in their memory. 

  Brady Linnell (above) was also presented with the Allied Beef Industry award for the carcass merit of his steer at county fair, and Macy Machado (below) gave a presentation and update about her heifer that was awarded to her and donated by Terry Hamby.
The UCCA started a new award where they gift a replacement heifer to a 4-H or FFA youth, and they use that heifer to start their breeding project.  Macy was the first recipient, and the project was approved for 2014 so another youth will have a heifer donated by a UCCA cattleman to begin their project!

We enjoyed hearing from Kirby as he gave us an update from Representative Walden's office.

After lunch, we headed back to the conference room for a phone conversation with Dr. Tom Field about the future of the beef industry.

Todd Nash, OCA Wolf Committee Chair also gave us an update on the wolf situation and we heard from a representative from Oregon Fish & Wildlife.
Once the meetings were over, we headed to the Pendleton Convention Center for a prime rib dinner & entertainment!
So each year, the UCCA hire entertainment for the ball. Some years it has been a band, last year it was a hilarious and entertaining performance by Cara Ayres and her partner.  All have been great, but ever since we've been involved I've thought it'd be fun to watch the final performance of the NFR since the UCCA Ball always falls in Night 10 of the NFR.
There are perks to being the President's wife (wink, wink) and so this year my wish came true.  We streamed the NFR in from our DVR at home and after a little bit of a learning curve - we got it figured out and it was fun to watch the rodeo!
Clint also thought up a 50/50 raffle that raised funds for the scholarship committee and that went so well!  We just wrote the name of every rodeo contestant on an index card and dropped them into a bucket.  People there at the ball could buy a name for $10.  Once everyone had bought their names, we divided the money up in 7 pools, one for each event.  Then we split that money 50/50 and whoever drew the name of the cowboy (or cowgirl) who won the event that night won 50% of the pot!  So if you drew the cowboy who won the tie-down roping, you won $60 and the scholarship fund received $60.  We raised over $500 for the fun that night (no one drew the bull rider's name, so all $120 went to the scholarship fund) and it was a fun way to stay involved with the rodeo and bet a little.  If we couldn't be in Vegas, we figured we'd might as well bring a little bit of the Vegas atmosphere to Pendleton!

But the best part of the WHOLE day was getting to spend time with good people who love and live the cattle industry.  I am so thankful for this group of people who supports us, loves us, cheers us on - and hopefully we can do the same for them in return.

It's a great life we get to lead, and it's made better by all of the people you've seen in the pictures of this post.

Success is reason enough!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

We meet their expectations.


It's one of my favorite times right now at the ranch to take pictures of the spring cows.
They're soggy from the weight of a calf just entering the third trimester and big barreled around their middle.
Because they're being fed daily, they associate humans with good things and usually don't run away when I head out to the fields to take their pictures.
They're expecting.
In more ways than one.


They're expecting us to feed them.
They're expecting us to care for them.
They're expecting a calf, that we'll help care for.
But hopefully they'll do the brunt of the work.  ;)
They're expecting us to fulfill needs that they cannot, because they're animals.

And that's what ranchers do.
We fulfill their expectations.
Every day.  Every way.  As much as is possible.

Ranchers chain up in the ice and snow to feed.

Ranchers wake up early to check cows while others are sleeping in on weekends.

Ranchers don't know 8-5, but we do know 5-8.

And for as long as we're able - we'll meet their expectations.

Monday, December 15, 2014

In the early morning light.


In the early morning light;
Feed trucks are loaded.
Hay is unloaded & stacked.
Cows are fed & trucks are turned around.
And the great life we get to lead here keeps on moving along.