Friday, July 30, 2010

Time to Share #23

Well it has been along time since I have done a Time to Share with you, but I finally found something that I really do want to share with all my readers and followers.

This week in our mailbox we got a flyer for a company called The Good Food Box. This company buys food from local producers, packages and sells it to consumers in the Edmonton area.

Although the prices are slightly higher, you are receiving a high quality product, and you know that the producers and farmers are receiving a higher dollar amount for their products.

They carry everything from fruit, to meats, cereal grains, and even prepackaged foods. It is like going shopping at the grocery store without having to leave your house!

I would suggest taking a look or looking for a similar company in your area.

The Good Food Box

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Show Circuit

This morning as I was going through my list of blogs that I follow, I found a link to The Show Circuit's online magazine. Typically this magazine is only available through a subscription.

The magazine is full of fun and interesting ads for upcoming call club calf sales. There are also ads for Simmental, Angus, Hereford, and every other breed imaginable. It is a pretty fun read, as majority of the ads are in color, and pretty creative. You can tell right away which is a home made ad, and which one was done by a designer!

The online issue is 566 pages. I can only imagine what it looks like in print. I easily picked out my favorite ad. It is in section 4 is that helps.

Have fun reading, and let me know what ad is your favorite!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sale Selections

The fall is always a busy time around the farm. This year we will be getting ready to go to Brandon, Edmonton, and Regina to show cattle. In between the shows, we also take part in a few sales as well.

This past week Bouchard Livestock was out to select cattle for the sales that they manage. We decided to consign cattle to 3 of their sales; Brandon, Regina, and Checkers.

This year I will be selling an animal of mine. Because of my smaller herd numbers this only happened every couple of years. This is a bred heifer that I raised that will be selling at Checkers this December.She is out of a black Dream On daughter and one of our herd sires that we purchased out of Ontario a few years back named Red Man. Red Man has a real outcross pedigree that can always be an assist to any program.

Minature Donkey Extravaganza

For the past few days I have been in Red Deer running the NMDA Miniature Donkey Extravaganza II at Westerner Days.

I took this contract on as something fun to do, would fill some time at nights, and to relaly push me outside my element.Sure I had organized lots of shows before, but my knowledge of Minature Donkeys was slim.The weekend was a great success, and these tiny animals are pretty impressive too. It was fun to watch them work through their paces.No I am not going to run out a purchase a Miniature Donkey, but I sure do have an appreciation for them now.
During the weekend they competed in halter, jumping, and driving classes. My favorite definitely were the trail classes and the jumping classes.
My favorite class of the day was the Coon Jumping. In this class the donkeys are put into a 10'x10' chalk box and asked to jump without getting a running start. The jump starts are 12" and moves up each round. At the end the winning donkey jumped 32"!
It was an interesting weekend to say the least. I met some great people and got my eyes opened to a new world.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Billboard Fun

I love the days when you are driving down the highway and see a good billboard. It may be funny, it may be educational, but if they are going to be there, they they should be worth reading right?

On my drive to Calgary Friday night, I passed this special billboard just south of Bowden. I had heard rumblings of it, but thought that I should see it for my own 2 eyes.

Yes, that is a picture of a fellow cattleman around the Bowden area. For those of you that cannot read the fine print it says:
What Happens in Mexico...
Sometimes Comes Back to Bowden!!!

This has to be one of my favorite practical jokes that I have seen for a long time. The picture was taken at a Stag in Mexico. I imagine that a few guys pitched in some money to buy this, and it is totally worth it.

We seen Mr. Chalack at the Calgary Stampede, and lets just say that his phone has been pretty busy the last week with random phone calls!

What other good practical jokes have you played? Or have been played on you?

Marina Bay Sands

It seems like every week there is a new hotel or luxury spot opening around the world. Yesterday was no exception with the Marina Bay Sands hotel in Singapore.

It features in the impressive, boat-shaped 'SkyPark' perched atop the three towers that make up the world's most expensive hotel, the £4billion Marina Bay Sands development in Singapore .

The hotel, which has 2,560 rooms costing from £350 a night, was officially opened yesterday with a concert by Diana Ross.

The hotel has a indoor canal, opulent art, casino, outdoor plaza, convention centre, theatre, crystal pavilion and museum shaped like a lotus flower.

The most interesting part of the hotel is at the top though. The infinity pool on the roof which spans the three towers of the hotel. The platform itself is longer than the Eiffel tower laid down and is one of the largest of its kind in the world.

If you fancy a dip in this pool, you'll need a head for heights - it's 55 stories up. But swimming to the edge won't be quite as risky as it looks. While the water in the infinity pool seems to end in a sheer drop, it actually spills into a catchment area where it is pumped back into the main pool. At three times the length of an Olympic pool and 650ft up, it is the largest outdoor pool in the world at that height.

Overall it is a pretty neat place, with the exception of the price tag that goes along with it!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Day at Grandma and Grandpa's Farm

While down at Calgary we always stay at my Grandparents house. They live right along the river by Okotoks.

I love the area where they live. There are so many beautiful houses and small acreage in that area. They also cost millions of dollars!

When I got there Friday night, no one was home. I decided to take care of some of the cows that were there for the summer.
This area definitely would be my ideal place to live. If only a farmer could afford the land there!

Agtivity In the City

While in Calgary on Saturday I took some time to check out the Alberta Beef booth in Agtivity in the City.

This area is dedicated to agriculture commodities and allows them to interact with the visitors to the stamped. It is a great area for families to come and see what dairy, beef, hogs, canola, eggs, and so many other commodities are all about.

My grandpa Chuck does all of the booths for Alberta Beef. He spends countless hours dreaming up ideas and fun things for people to do in the booths. This year they did a little survey to see what booths were successful in the tent, and his was by far the winner.

Here are a few pictures of the Alberta Beef booth, and the tent. I encourage you to stop in and learn a thing or two about the industries and where your food comes from next time you see the booths out!

Calgary Steer Show 2010

This Saturday was the Calgary Stampede Steer Show. Calgary is always a really fun show as it really is the pinnacle of steer shows in Canada.My family along with some friends of ours the McLeod's bough the Grand Champion Steer out of the 4-H on Parade show. We took him to Drayton a few weeks later and won Grand Champion with him there.We knew that he would have a chance at Calgary, but also that there was a lot of stiff competition as well. He was entered into the Charolais breed division. We came out of the division as reserve champion. The steer that beat us then went on to be Grand Champion.

Congratulations to Soo Line for their Champion Steer, and to Dusty Howell and Curtis Flewelling for their Reserve Champion Steer.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Keeping Our Fingers Crossed

Well I didn’t want to say anything yesterday to jinx it, but it looks like the mess of 2010 may be finally starting to come to a close.

The BP oil situation in the Gulf of Mexico has been 3 months of hell for not only the environment but also the people living along the coast.

Yesterday it was announced that after many attempts to cap the site, the attempt yesterday looks like it may have worked. There are still lots of testing that needs to be done, and a more permanent fix for the problem, but at least for now it is preventing millions of barrels of oil from spilling into the waters.

We have all see the pictures and heard the stories of the animals that have been affected in this mess. Those who have been able to help with the rescue mission of these animals and helping out to save the people and animals that have had to suffer through this should really be proud of themselves.

The ones that should really be ashamed in this situation is BP. Not only did they know that the under water well site was not in great shape, and that there was the risk of something terrible happening at the site, but that it took them 3 months to cap off the well. The environmental damage that this has caused is huge, but I think it will not be until many years from now that we see the real impact this will have on us.

I am keeping my fingers crossed that this cap is going to hold, and that this whole mess will start to get cleaned up. I know that I will never think of BP the same way, and that I hope others remember this situation when filling up at the gas station.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Random Thoughts #1

I always get a series of random thoughts that I want to share with you my blog readers (thanks for reading each week!). The problem is that none of the thoughts really fit together. I have been writing them down and thought that today would be a great day to share them with you.
  • This weekend I am heading down to Calgary Stampede. I am super excited for a few reasons. It is a great time to see everyone and catch up with old friends. It also means the steer show which I find really fun and exciting whether competing or not. This year however, we do have a steer, so I promise to have results of your next week. The third reason I love Calgary is the atmosphere. Everything from the tons of people asking questions about agriculture and where there food comes from, to the rodeo and chuckwagons, and finally the grandstand show. I am hoping to get to watch the grandstand show Friday or Saturday night as a section on it is all Micheal Jackson themed!
  • Public Displays of Affection or PDA- I HATE PDA. I see no reason for you to have to cuddle with your boyfriend during a business meeting, or have to hold your boyfriends hand everywhere you go. Good for you, you found yourself a man, now please do not rub it in my face, and parade it around for everyone to see. Now there are 2 times in life when I do not mind a little PDA. The first is on your wedding day. It's your wedding day, if you are not a little extra cuddly and happy to be around one another, you may have an issue on your hands. The second is when no one is around, or you are not flaunting it. This is much harder to distinguish between, but yes it can be done.
  • City Transit Buses. I swear they are going to be the vain of my existence. I understand the purpose of them, and how they can be very useful to the transportation system within a city. However, what I hate about buses are the rights that they have, or think that they have. The big one is bus lanes. The worst ones are the ones that are in construction zones. I don't know how many times I have been stuck in traffic, not moving, yet a bus whizzes on by and gets to cut in front of me because his bus lane is ending. The other thing that really bothers me about city buses are the drivers. I have no idea where they find these guys, but there are so many accidents, and close calls. I know that if I see a bus I try to get as far away from it as possible. There is no way I want to be driving beside it.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Animal Cruelty or Animal Instinct

We are about 1/2 way through the 2010 Calgary Stampede. Each year there are countless stories that come out of animal cruelty and abuse. Today, yet another story was released about 4 horses that were killed or euthanize yesterday at the Stampede.

In all 4 of these situations these animals were doing what they love to do and were born to do. Two of the incidents happened because of heart attacks, another because of a shoulder injury and the fourth was a horse that suffered a broken back.

In the case of the 2 chuckwagon horses that were put down these animals are lucky to be where they are. Most chuckwagon horses come from the race track after a few years of running. Drivers will purchase horses off the track and train them to be wagon horses. If they do not make a wagon horse, they will then use them for an outriding horse. In both situations, the horses are doing what they were bred and love to do. RUN! Majority of these horses would be sent to the slaughter house, and their lives ended years earlier if it was not for the chuckwagon drivers taking them into their care.

The same goes for the horse that suffered a heart attack in the cattle penning. These horses are bred to work cattle and livestock. They love to do that. This situation is extremely unfortunate in that a young woman was hurt in this accident.

The final situation of a horse having to be euthanize at the Stampede is really a fluke situation. In the Novice Saddlebronc riding, a young horse had lost his rider and continued to buck. The horse bucked so hard that he broke his back. This is yet another case of an animal doing what he is born, bred, and loves to do. How many times have we all seen a horse bucking in the field. It is a natural thing for these animals to do.

Yes the loss of these animals are unfortunate but I think that there are a few things that the articles have been missing.

The first is that these animals are athletes. Like any other athlete in the world, they are given the best care possible. Many of them are worth tens of thousands of dollars. Not only that but they are irreplaceable, and become part of your family. Now if I had something that valuble, and emotionally meant the world to me, why would I subject that animal to anything but the very best care in the world?

I remember one year while we were showing cattle at the Calgary Stampede, my grandpa, who was the barn boss at the time, was asked to do an interview with a major news outlet. During the Stampede, it can get extremely hot, especially out on the cement. This day was no exception, having temperatures into the high 30's (90-100 F). They started the interview outside in the heat. The journalist was probing asking about the unfair conditions of the animals, how cruel we treat the animals, and how we should be ashamed for doing this to our animals.

After 20 minutes in the heat, they proceeded into the cattle barn. The barn was shaded, cattle were under fans, getting bathed daily, and under spa like conditions. They were fed and watered better then most people on the midway, comfortable and not hot, basically living the dream. Lets just say that it did not take the journalist long to see that her point of view might have been wrong.

I have no problem with people standing up for animal welfare. I am a strong believer that animals should be treated fairly, and receive the best care possible. In saying that, I also believe that animals should be able to take part in what is natural to them. This includes running, bucking, and sorting cattle.

I strongly encourage people to look beyond that messages that are flooded to the masses during a rodeo or livestock show. Do some research for yourself. Find out what is really happening, and how these animals are being treated. Majority of the time you may be surprised just how good they have it.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Painting the Town Red

This weekend Brett and I were both in the city. This is a rare occurrence so we thought we would make the most of it.

We had both been wanting to head to the piano bar in West Edmonton Mall, and thought it would be the perfect night to do it. We got all dressed up and headed to West Ed.

The night started off with a stop at Hudson's to watch the first 1/2 of the Rider game. Brett is a rider fan, and I wanted to watch my friend Keith play.We then headed over to The Red Piano. This place is hands down my favorite place in Edmonton. It has a great crowd, and is just a ton of fun!The singers and performers are amazing! We sang everything from AC/DC to Eminem to Cyndi Lauper! We spend about 4 hours there, and it seemed like just a few minutes. We are already making plans to go back!
We didn't get any pictures of us girls there, as Brett would not let me take any pictures. Lets just say that there was bit of a height difference! More on that to come this week!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Life In A Day

Last night I found this really neat YouTube video. I encourage you to check it out and take part in the challenge.

I think it would be great to try and get an agriculture prespective and snip it into this film! I will be at a Minautre Donkey Show that day, but am going to do my best to film a few minutes of my life.

DIY Project #1

I was in Ikea last night continuing my dresser seach whe I seen this little craft project. I decided to pick up to hides and try my best at this.

I think they turned out great and only cost about $50 each. Now I just have to figure out where I want to hang them!

World Cup 2010

So the World Cup is just about over. 1 more game and World Cup 2010 will be in the books.... Thank God!!

I don't know about you, but I just don't get the whole soccer thing. I think that it is boring, dry, nonathletic, extremely overrated!

Just think what would happen if a hockey player, or football player fell down and started to cry because he "hurt his ankle"? Suck it up, and either get up and play again or get off the field.

I also think that it has to be one of the slowest, most painful sports to watch. Yes, ok some of the men are extremely good looking, however, the field is so big that you can't even get a close up of them. In some games there is not even any goals scored. At least with hockey, you get to see a few chances, and some good hits in a 1-0 game.

And then there are those stupid horns. I cannot stand those things! Why would someone invent those to start of with and then give them to 20,000 fans to blow during a game.

All I know is that I am extremely thankful that there is only one game left, and it will be another 4 years before I have to hear about soccer.