A Little Bit Western Archives


Archive for the “Ranch & Real Life” category

When the Going Gets Tough….

Jul 30, 2021

It’s hard to think about much else right now other than the dry conditions that so many of us are faced with. Across much of the Prairie Provinces and the Northern Great Plains, farmers and ranchers are dealing with drought, water shortages, and pests. Years like ’61 and ’88 are often referenced at the coffee shop and around the kitchen …



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Greener Pastures

Jun 28, 2021

I recently posted a few photos of our kids and their horses roping, loping, and grinning. I included a caption about how horses bring another welcome set of eyes and another brain into a situation to help riders tackle whatever job they might be working on. I added that a good horse is more than just a tool. They are …



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Pasture Lost & Found

May 26, 2021

If you take care of the land, the land will take care of you. It’s a familiar sentiment that stirs feelings of pride and heritage in most farmers and ranchers. It takes an ironic twist though, when we discover – and subsequently have to deal with – the valuable, worthless, and downright weird artifacts and garbage that appear on our …



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Tune Up

Apr 14, 2021

March brings warmer weather, a little mud (if you’re lucky), an awakening of gophers (if you’re less lucky), and the piano tuner.

If you were playing a game of “one of these things is not like the other” and had to select a single item from our camp that fit that criteria, most would look to my beautiful grand piano. …



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Back in the Saddle Again

Jan 21, 2021

Back in 2014, I started writing a column for a quality local newspaper over a three-year period. During that time, I shared a bit about life on our ranch and what it was like to raise our kids among the daily activities of breakdowns, calving cows, and lost dogs. I covered the challenges and triumphs around …



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WFH Woke

Mar 20, 2020

Well friends, these are some unexpected times, aren’t they? Life has changed with #COVID19 and recommendations for social distancing (although for ranchers, self-isolation is a normal and usually welcome practice). Schools and day-cares are closed and employers have transitioned to telework where possible, as society pulls together to minimize the spread of the disease that will potentially overburden our health …



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Beyond Meat is Beyond Me

Aug 7, 2019

It’s hard to beat a beautiful Canadian summer! Fun in the sun, beach time, lake days, and of course, the sizzle of a grill as you barbecue a simple patty comprised of twenty-one ingredients, like bamboo cellulose, vegetable glycerin, gum arabic, and pea protein isolate…just no actual meat. Yeah, I’m talking about the Beyond Meat sensation that is on the …



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Calving Certainties

Apr 11, 2019

People are pretty particular about how they raise their cattle. The breed, colour, size, temperament, horns or no horns, registered or commercial, roped or tabled.… The list of variations, and associated opinions about different methods, can go on for a country mile.

Calving season is one example of how different farms and ranches can be. Do you calve in winter? …



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Deep Freeze

Apr 7, 2018

I’m no weather forecaster, but I am a major weather stakeholder, and follow trends and temperatures regularly. As we enter our fifth (sixth?) winter, it’s hard to deny that this spring has been unseasonably cold. Scratch that, it’s cold as #$%*. However, being the optimist that I am, I’ve picked up a few tips to help even the most soured …



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Gender Bender

Nov 6, 2017

Recently there has been some discussion surrounding women-oriented agricultural events and groups. Organizations like Women in Ag, and national conferences such as Advancing Women in Agriculture, have sparked debate and even inspired a column in the Saskatoon Star Phoenix about this “dicey topic.” Questions have surfaced…Why aren’t there men-only agricultural events? Are women just creating their own barriers? Why …
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