Regionals Recap

Well, for the past few weeks my family, calves, and I have been traveling around the country attending the AJSA Regional and National Classics. In late June, we traveled to Louisville, Kentucky to the Eastern Regional. It was a great event with the top notch facilities of the Kentucky Fair and Expo Center, and the “Hoosier Hospitality” of the Indiana Simmental Association.

We traveled up with another family from Alabama. This was their first regional show, so they were very excited. This also happened to be my last regional as a participant, so I felt a mix of excitement and sadness. We arrived the afternoon before the event began and set up tie outs.

The next morning, we arrived early to the grounds and began the laborious task of setting up the inside beds. We were in for a pleasant surprise, as the air conditioning was already on and we were able to comfortably set up. We had lots of room, and enjoyed being out of the heat.

Soon after, we started contests. We did a lot of “Sarah, how do you do this,” over the course of the week. I loved helping my two shadows with their contests, and they seemed to enjoy their time competing. We had a few interesting moments. I substituted my heifer’s price for one of our new junior’s heifer’s price in Sales Talk. We had been practicing so much, and his price just came out!! The buyers got an extremely good deal as they were offered my bred heifer for the price of his October baby. Nevertheless, we made it through the show with much success and many memories.

I got to practice fitting “race car style.” Our little group showed a Simbrah, followed by my big Percentage Bred and Owned, followed by a February 2013 Percentage, followed by and October Percentage. Needless to say, I think the Simbrah got the best fit job, and the February got the verdict of “she’s clean, let’s go.” Nevertheless, the little February made her way into overall Percentage drive, and her showman showed her like a champ! They will just have to wait a few months, and I’m sure she will start getting a piece of the pie in Grand Drive.

Next came the awards banquet, and its ice cream social and awesome prizes. Let me tell you, we had some cool stuff at Easterns this year. There were: Leather bootbags for Sales Talk, showheifer cutout wall hangings for the Quiz, blacked out show halters for Showmanship, ice chests for Judging, cash for Public Speaking, and a vast array of decorations, furniture, blowers, and showboxes for the Overall Awards.

Indiana did a great job with the event, and now I’m going to put in a huge plug for next year’s Nationals. They will be hosted by the Illinois Simmental Association in Louisville at the Expo Center. We all know how great those facilities are, and I’m sure Illinois will do an awesome job!!

Until next time,
Sarah

Last Week’s Blog

Yes, that’s right. This is LAST WEEK’s blog. I have been driving, riding, showing, quizzing, judging, and socializing with my Simmy and 4-H friends.

Let’s see, I think two Saturdays ago I was in Seminary, Mississippi at the Mississippi Simmental Simbrah Field Day. I love my Mississippi Simmental family, and always look forward to field day. This year, we were hosted by JRW Farms, and let me tell you…they have a super nice show barn. We were fortunate enough to stall and show under the turbo-fan cooled barn. The major topic of the day was Eastern Regionals…. 7 families were attending. That’s big numbers for us southern states!! Everyone was excited for the upcoming event, and two of our members were attending South Centrals as well!!

Four days later brought the actual Eastern Regional and the 12 hour drive to Kentucky. We were glad to finally arrive and set up in the humidity free parking lot. Easterns were great,and before I knew it my last regional had passed. Don’t worry; a complete recap is coming soon. I just don’t want to steal my thunder for this week’s blog.

We drove home on Monday, and on Wednesday, I was Auburn bound. Thursday soon came and a short drive sent me to the 4-H Regional Livestock Judging Contest. I served as an official, and enjoyed sorting through the classes of hogs, heifers, and doe goats. I also enjoyed listening to a set of heifer reasons. I always enjoy hearing junior reasons, and love the “descriptions” that come with 9 year olds and just about any class of creature.

I drove home Thursday night, and was up Saturday morning to head to the County 4-H club’s steer weigh in. I was the tag/EID/tattoo gun loader, and earned a quick respect for the job. We processed about 25 calves in a little under two hours. This doesn’t sound impressive, but I assure you, we were flying!!

Now, you may be wondering when the heifers were rinsed, when we practiced for the ring, when I studied for the quiz….and when I wrote my blog. Well, let’s just say the blue heifer’s white belly is a little yellowed, the Simbrah is a little ornery, and the quiz hasn’t been glanced at. Nevertheless, at least I have practiced driving. I will surely be a pro by the time we arrive in Lincoln!

Until next time,
Sarah

A Fun Sale

This past week, we sent a few of our early spring calves to their new homes. One of which was a heifer I called Cindy. I told you about her great personality a few weeks ago in one of my blog posts. Needless to say, Cindy has gone through some major transformations during the past few days.

We sold Cindy to a first time showman named Emma. She is a petite young girl who is very excited about her heifer. Cindy was chosen for her because of her sweet demeanor and “cute” markings. When Cindy was born, we fretted about her excessive white markings, but they have proven to give her character and make her the perfect calf for Emma.

Now, back to my talk of transformations. First, Cindy is now called Sara….wonder where that name came from!?!?! I’ve never shared my name with a cow, but Emma is proud to have named her and I’m going to take it as a compliment of the highest sort.

Secondly, Cindy-Sara had some difficulties grasping the concept that people come in all sizes. She was used to working with me. I’m tall, calm, and in control. Emma is small, excited, and learning to be in charge. Sara was shocked to learn that someone other than me was brushing, leading, and scratching her. She wasn’t too pleased with the idea at first either.

Now Sara is at her new home, and I have received great news that Sara is doing well, and many pictures to back this up. Sara has learned that little people do not bite; they actually are quite safe and fun to be around. In fact, I have pictures of Sara with Emma leaning over her back with a brush in hand. Sara has learned that life as a first time showman’s heifer comes with plenty of love and lots of care, and Emma is learning how to consistently provide that care. All in all, this has been a very fun sale, and I know showman and heifer will experience some good times over the next year.

Until next time,
Sarah

Meet the Gang

Nationals entries are in, and I’m sure everyone is anxiously preparing their showstring for this summer’s show season. This year, my family and I are hauling three heifers to Eastern Regionals and the National Classic. I figure I will introduce you to each heifer and share some of their personality traits.

Heifer #1: SDSF Joy’s Serenade aka:Lucy

Lucy is my Purebred Bred and Owned for this year. She is solid black and sired by Mo Better. Her dam is our Joy’s Harmony cow. She is my Sales Talk heifer this year because of the rich pedigree. Lucy is a bit of an interesting specimen because she was created from sexed heifer semen. Then, when the embryologist ultrasounded her dam, he thought Lucy was a bull!! So we went the rest of the pregnancy expecting a bull calf, and out popped Lucy. Lucy is your typical Simmental pig being big and broody, fat and hungry. She’s the first to the feed trough, the first to finish eating, and the first to look for seconds. She’s fairly agreeable; but would prefer eating to practicing showmanship. Lucy sets up very well, but she is an infamous head drooper. As she relaxes her head goes down, down, down. She is our heaviest heifer, but she tends to be the odd girl out as the other two gang up on her for the best spots in the fan room. Even tempered and sweet, she’s our mellow, no drama heifer this year.

Heifer #2: SDSF Dottie Sue

Dottie Sue is a show heifer and she knows it. The diva of the bunch, she loves being brushed, rinsed, blown, and shown. She gets it honest being half Shorthorn and a bright blue roan. She loves attention and has a cocky, look-at-me attitude. Dottie Sue is my Percentage bred and owned. She’s sired by Grandmaster and is out of our Dottie cow. Dottie Sue always hogs the fan; she feels it is her “right” to have the best spot. When we travel to shows, many juniors fall in love with her unique markings. Everyone seems to love a blue roan. The common comment is “We always try for blues, and they always come out black.” I personally wish she was black!! She sticks out like a sore thumb in the Simmental show ring. I have even had judges at smaller shows question her parentage. She’s half Simmental, maternal in her type, and sired by a purebred bull. I wish everyone could see her as what she is, versus how she is colored. Dottie Sue is my showmanship heifer this year. She likes to show and sets up well. She will be easy to spot this summer as she’s the sassy heifer that stares at everything and hams it up for the judge when she enters the ring.

Heifer #3: LMC Red Doll aka: Dolly

Yes, that’s right. LMC. She’s a Simbrah!! I worked to find a Simbrah show heifer for four months before finding Dolly. I think I have talked to every Simbrah breeder in Texas, and let me tell you…they are just about the nicest bunch of breeders I have ever dealt with. We called Mr. Guerra about a heifer named Lively, but after his warning that she earned her name we decided on Dolly, who also earned her name. She is the sweetest heifer in my showstring this year. She follows me around in the pasture and fan room begging to be brushed. She loves having her dewlap rubbed and will sneak up behind you to put her head on your back and beg for more scratching. This one is a character, both physically and personality wise. She’s a fawn color with huge, droopy ears with black highlights. She has big eyes and a long face. This combined with her inquisitive nature make her a hoot to be around. Most heifers will drink when led to our big water bucket at a show. Not Dolly! She looks around and tries to find anything worthy of investigation. One time, she found a loosely tied square bale. Needless to say, Dolly dug right into the middle of that bale and slung hay everywhere. Dolly has been a joy to work with, but she can be a handful. I try to make her behave like the other heifers, but she is just a different beast. When you see my dad running to tieouts with a huge yellow cow in tow, you will know it’s Dolly!

I hope you enjoyed my account of our showstring. I’m sure you each have characters of your own and enjoy each animal’s unusual personality. See you soon, with my three amigos in tow!!

Until next time,
Sarah

Throwback Thursday…The Register!

This week, we are going to celebrate Throwback Thursday Simmental style. While I was in Sedalia, Missouri at the 2011 National Classic, I was fortunate enough to pick up some old Registers. I have enjoyed reading these archives of our breed and wish to share with you some of the highlights of each magazine.

Simmental Shield: May 1978

This was a special polled emphasis issue. Gracing the front cover was the polled head of a red goggle eyed fullblood calf. The first interesting article involved a dun colored blaze faced bull with the caption, “Docile and Easy…to Keep, Breed, and Calve…Brahmental.” Yes, that’s correct. This Register, or well Simmental Shield, was published in a time when Simbrah were called Brahmental. Moving forward, many adds featured polled bulls. Sometimes just the head was pictured! Into the meat of the magazine, I found two black bulls pictured over a headline stating” The first black, polled, purebred Simmental bulls available in North America.” And let me tell you, they were some pretty interesting specimens. A specific add that caught my eye was from Bar5, a name we hear today. Their page featured Bar5 Dutch Mark pictured fully and with just a head shot. In large letters read the statement, “Far MORE Than Just Polled.” This add speaks to me because it epitomizes good breeding sense. Be it the polled chasers, the black chasers, or more presently the hair chasers or the style chasers; Simmental breeders need to remember that superior breeding stock must be far more than exceptional in the current fad. They must be easy doing, productive animals who make their owners profit. All in all, the Simmentals of this time span were fair looking cattle. We had large, growthy individuals that still had enough body.

Moving forward, my next magazine was from the late 1980s.

The Register: October 1988, Serving the Simmental and Simbrah Breeds

Times had already changed as Simbrah were now recognized by their current namesake. The cattle in this issue were more diverse than in the previous decade. Now, some of the featured animals appealed to me; however, many were taller, tighter, and far too extreme for my likings. Welcome to the frame race!! These cattle were tall. The advantages of fitting had also been recognized, and the tail switches were by far the largest part of each animal. This was the sire summary issue, and the EPDs were far different than those of today’s Simmental. Remember these numbers don’t compare with our animals’. They are on a different base, but trait leaders numbers were as follows: CE: 103; BW:-4; WW:13; YW:41.4; and MM: 6.6. API and TI were not even dreamed about, and we apparently also lacked carcass EPDs. However, one of the last pages showed an add that featured the carcass merit of an operation’s animals. A ribeye was pictured. It was huge, practically devoid of marbling, and slim on fat. It was big and lean….a great example of this era’s cattle.

My next register was from October of 1997.

Here, I began to recognize people and animals. Desa Rae was pictured as a yearling heifer in a Silver Towne Farms add. Dr. Lipsey was pictured beside his Viewpoint article, and guys he was as insightful and ever and looked so very young! This Register recapped the 1997 Junior Nationals, and the results were as follows: AJSA President: Ryan Altenburg. Overall Junior: Ellen Tom; Overall Senior: Ryan Rash who also exhibited the Champion Purebred female. Many of the cattle in adds were black, and many were solid marked. The cattle were looking better, and I greatly enjoyed the Sweepstakes recap. Triple C had a great show, and Peter Courtney was pictured happily accepting the premier breeder and exhibitor banners, purchasing a “cow” tie from Steve Sellers in the fun auction, and enjoying a huge ice cream cone. Times were changing and Simmentals were evolving into the cattle we know today.

My final “old Register” was the January 2000 issue.

On the cover, it stated “2000: A New Era in Beef Production.” And by golly, the first two adds featured spotted fullbloods!!!! Desa Rae was now pictured as a lactating cow, and Momentum was featured in a write-up about Sunset View Farm. Power Drive, Black Joker, and Powerstroke were in the semen company adds. Summer Sister, Breath Taker, Honeysuckle Rose, and Miss Pep 101H were heifers shown in sale adds for in Denver. The North American was recapped in this issue, and I actually recognized the pictured champions. BTS Brandi was the Champion heifer, followed by Drake Spice Girl. I’m telling you what, I’d buy either of those heifers and happily haul them anywhere today. Wesner Livestock Enterprises won Premier Breeder and Premier Exhibitor, and the Wesner girls we current AJSA members know and show with were slightly taller than the banners they held. Times were certainly changing, and our breed was ever so close to its current state. Many of the people we know today were out and about promoting Simmental cattle.

Twenty years from now, I hope some young AJSA member digs up and old Register and reads all about our current thinkers and movers. I hope they view our cattle and feel as though we raised functional, profitable livestock. I hope they see the faces of breed greats and huge supporters and smile in their memory. I hope they really think and reflect on our past and our future…and on all things that make us Simmental.

Until next time,
Sarah

Calf Breaking Time

My showbarn is currently overrun by baby calves. I am in the process of weaning, breaking, or weaning and breaking four diverse little creatures. Each calf is very different and presents a different challenge.

First, we have Susanna. She is a Purebred who is out of our Sierra cow and Explorer. If you remember the big yellow Sophia heifer we showed last year, then that’s her sister. This heifer is proving to be nothing like her big sis. Sophia was a sweet girl and even helped little kids learn showmanship. Susanna is a rascal. She’s easy to catch as she comes running whenever she thinks I may have feed, but past that she has a mind of her own. It’s not that she’s scared or nutty, but she is rotten. She likes to have her way and she lets you know when she’s not happy. After being tied, she proceeds to stomp the ground, sling her head, swish her tail, and make this weird aggravated noise. She’s not keen on leading and does not like the show stick….at all.

Following Susanna, and also always eager to eat, is Reese. She is a Chi heifer sired by Eye Candy and is an absolute doll. She loves to be scratched and enjoys being brushed, bathed, and blown. She is a joy to work with and is being broke to sell. Here’s the problem. I’d rather keep her!! She is such a sweetheart and is out of one of our best steer producing mamas. It seems like every year I find one that I just hate to part with. Last year, it was a sweet blue steer; this year it’s Reese. The steer went, so maybe Reese can stay!

Finally, I am working with two younger calves who are still nursing their mamas at night. They are both sweet and easy going, but their mamas are a different story. Since they aren’t weaned, both mamas currently reside in the show pasture…..both EX-SHOWHEIFER mammas. Both ex-showheifer mamas who remember when and where I feed and would love nothing more than to run into the barn and into a stall with a full feed trough. The babies are fun since they are still cute and little. They are also marked up neat and already sold; which makes them even more enjoyable. The heifer is black with full white socks and a white belly and tail. She’s super sweet and took about 10 minutes to break. The steer is also a doll. He is a cherry red roan and out of our Harmony cow who raised our cow calf pair from last year and my purebred heifer for this year. He’s a far cry from his sisters, being chubby and clubby, but he still has their head, squareness, and quality look… even if it is a very different look!

As you can see, I’m keeping busy doing what I enjoy most. I must say I’ll be glad when these sweet babies go to their new homes, or to my replacement pen, but I always enjoy playing with the youngsters and getting them ready for their show career or productive life. It’s neat to see the actual calves, big and grown, that I planned for so many months ago.

Until next time,
Sarah

Judging 101

“Do the big things first!” That’s what my livestock evaluation professor has drilled into my class for the past 4 months. I began ANSC 3300, Livestock Evaluation and Marketing, this past January with the hopes of improving my livestock judging and reasons skills. Now that the semester has officially ended, I can honestly say I have accomplished my goal.

Before my AJSA career, I never competed in livestock judging contests. I remember my first regionals, and the judging contest that came with it. I was excited to begin the contest but didn’t really understand the reasons part of the competition. So, I asked an older AJSA member how reasons went, and was given an excellent explanation as we walked to the first class of the contest. Fortunately, she was a great “fast explainer” and I placed well in the contest.

Since then, I have consistently not placed at Nationals and been front row at regionals. Hence, I have decided that my livestock judging skills are strongly influenced by location!! I have always blamed my failures at the national contest on my lack of proper reasons training.

This past semester, I learned the art of oral reasons and hope to share some of my new knowledge with you. Here are my top 4 tips if you are feeling a little rocky on reasons giving:

1. Be confident. Yes, it gets you points. The purpose of giving reasons is to defend your decisions in placing the class. In order to be convincing, it is imperative that you are confident and radiate this confidence as you speak.

2. Say what you mean, and mean what you say. If a heifer was placed forth because she was the pounds lightest, frailest constructed, and most narrow designed; nail her. Don’t sugar coat your reasons or sit the fence on close pairs. If you placed 2 ahead of 3 for structural soundness and femininity, even though 3 was stouter, talk the pair as such…and stick with it. Never second guess or hesitate; even on close pairs.

3. Get the easy points. If 1 is a red baldy, say it. If 4 has a split ear, mention it. Remember the format and stick to it. Memorize your opening statement so you are already set up for a good first impression. Make sure you remember your placing.

4. Don’t “lie.” Take accurate notes as you view the class. Describe each animal as it truly is, not how you imagine or wish it looks. Make sure you are objective in your note taking. I have been guilty of focusing only on the close pairs. If 4 obviously goes last, sometimes I forget to truly evaluate her and write notes. Then, I find myself trying to think up grants in the reasons prep room. Make sure you really look at each animal.

It is sometimes scary to give reasons for the first time, or after a long break. However, I have learned first-hand that the judges really want you to succeed. This past weekend, I served as an official at our Block and Bridle judging contest. I listened to juniors discuss an Angus heifer class. I will tell you, I was nervous. I wanted to fairly and accurately judge the contestants. I listened to each kid and silently willed them to do well and make the correct statements. I listened to kids struggle and wanted with all my heart to put the right words into their mouths. I heard others enter the room and nail it. I was so excited for them and excited to score them high. The officials are not scary. They may seem that way to some, but trust me. Each official really wants you to do well and doesn’t think poorly of you if you get mixed up or forget what you need to say. They have all been in your shoes and know that you may someday be in theirs. Happy judging!

Until next time,
Sarah

Sales Talk

After a long day in the classroom, I returned home and obviously logged onto Facebook. As I was scrolling down my newsfeed, I came across a post from the AJSA asking what was everyone’s favorite AJSA contest. Without the slightest hesitation, I replied: “Sales Talk!”

I love the Sales Talk competition. However, I began my AJSA career with a limited understanding of the contest. Through the years, I have learned the ins and outs of this very fun, important, and educational event.
In 2008, I began preparations for my first ever Sales Talk competition. I began by memorizing my heifer’s information. Good Move!! It is always important to know your sale animal’s pedigree and performance data. The judges will want to know the animal’s parentage and genetic profile; especially any noteworthy ancestors or breed leading EPDs.

Here is where I started to stumble. I memorized and told the judge EVERYTHING. While it is great to mention a leading donor cow dam or a breed leading BW EPD; there is no need to point out that less that average YW number. Tell the judges the high points of your animal, and if they want to talk about the less desirables…well let them start that conversation.

Another error I made in my first Sales Talk was spending countless hours to memorize my entire talk. This is not the way to go. It is very important to go into the talk with a good outline of what you want to say. However, you need to interact with the judges and find out about their operation’s needs. Then, take their needs and sell them the animal based on its qualities that meet those specific needs.

Over the years, I have overcome my first year errors to become a successful Sales Talk contestant. I have helped younger juniors learn the art of Sales Talk and given talks to some of my friends in the cattle industry.

Here are a few of the more humorous incidents of my Sales Talk career:

1) Awesome pedigreed, great heifer. I was excited to sell her for the talk… Me:” Do you utilize embryo transfer in your herd? Do you need a great donor cow?”…..Judge: “No, we just raise feeder calves.”

2) At a contest with Alabama Junior Cattlemen. My prized Shorthorn heifer. Once again I was excited to use her…. Me: “Tell me more about your operation.”….Judge: “We raise Brahmans.”

3) Team Sales Contest. Our youngest member: “We will provide free transportation.”…”Judge: “Why thank you; I live in Hawaii.”

4) Recently this year, I used my cow calf pair for Sales Talk at Regionals and Nationals.

Regionals in South Mississippi: Judge: “I see your cow is slick haired. How nice. Did she shed out on her own, or did you have to shear her?”….Me:” I did shear her, but she had already started shedding really well. Her dam is slick right now as well. Her bull calf is also shedding out nicely on his own. This family grows hair in the winter but sheds out well in the summer”

Nationals in Ohio: Judge: “I see your cow is slick haired. Did you shear her? We raise show cattle and need good hair quality.”….Me: “Oh, we sheared her. She has really good hair in the winter, but it is hot in Alabama. She was shedding and it just needed to come on out. Her dam also had really good hair as a show heifer. This family grows really good hair in the winter.”

You have to love the situations that come with a good contestant and a great judge!

Until next time,
Sarah

Long Live the Percentage Simmental

Define the following: Percentage Simmental. What do these words mean to you? Obviously, the word Simmental should stand out immediately. We all love and breed Simmental cattle. But take things a step further. Analyze the “Percentage” part.

What does it mean to be a Percentage Simmental? To me, these words describe an animal who is sound and rugged; a good mama who has the genetics to produce a fast growing, product filled market animal. Percentage Simmental describes a bull who is easy calving but produces offspring who excel on the rail and generate dollars for their owners. Furthermore, Percentage Simmental describes a bovine who carries a certain degree of Simmental genetics and the “trustworthiness” that only comes from a breed with many years of data collection and research.

But still, what are the qualifications for an animal to be called Percentage Simmental? How much Simmental blood does the animal need to carry? From what other breeds can the animal be comprised? Where do you draw the line?
We all likely agree that ½ and ¾ blood Simmentals are definitely Percentage Simmys. But what about ¼ bloods; or 1/8 bloods? Is an animal a Percentage Simmental if it is ¾ something else?

Maybe two heifers, both of which are ½ Simmental walk into a pen. One is ½ Simmental and ½ Angus. The other is ½ Simmental and ½ Charolais, or ½ Shorthorn, or maybe ½ Brahman. Is one heifer more or less of a Percentage Simmental? Maybe one heifer is black with a bald face; but the other is yellow, or blue roan, or maybe even tigerstriped. Is the black baldy more of a Percentage Simmental?

To me these heifers are equal in their claim to “Percentage Simmental-ism.” That’s the great thing about the Simmental breed. Many other breeds can be successfully crossed with ours, and the result is usually an incredible individual. We as Simmental breeders should be proud to accept that our breed can appeal to various crossbreeding programs from our fellow cattle producers.

Long live the percentage Simmental and its many shapes, forms, and colors.

Until next time,
Sarah

That time of year

Fat pones, fat pones, everywhere! Fat pones, fat pones, and no hair! Yes, spring has definitely sprung. This warmer weather brings a close to the winter show season and the beginning of the necessary preparation time for the summer shows. I don’t know about you, but this time of the year always consists of two big management decisions for me.

First, my heifers are always fairly fat coming out of the winter season. My Simmentals are extremely easy keeping, and every effort to diet during the show season is usually done in vain. Those fat pones just seem to spring up, briskets start filling in, and I start fretting. It’s not that the heifers are too fat. They are “just right.” The problem is, they are just right and it is March. They need to stay just right for June and July! How in the world can this be accomplished?? For me, keeping the girls fresh means turning them out onto pasture from mid-March to late April. Nevertheless, I always seem to show the fatty who gained weight while on her grass diet. This year is no different, and as always I am fretting away. Yes, I do believe this heifer would gain weight on pinestraw!

My second big management decision is shucking out my heifers’ winter coats. I live in south Alabama, so this is a fairly easy task. Considering the heifers are already out on pasture, shedding comes pretty easily at my house. We try to rinse them a few times a week and shed comb the fire out of them. We have slicked a few of our more stubborn shedders, but I always procrastinate as I do not like to look at freshly slicked show heifers. It is always hard to see that fluffy winter hair go. I think we all sigh in disappointment when it starts falling out. Here’s the thing. It needs to leave. Make it your mission to get it out and you will be a much happier person when the inevitable happens. If you try to keep it, you will lose the battle.

Here’s my point. I know many of you are pros at summer preparation. But for you beginners, don’t be like I was. I learned the hard way! Go ahead and diet that fat heifer. She won’t get too thin. Go ahead and work to get that winter hair out. It will grow back; and if not, she’s still going to look much better with short new hair than with dead, brown, spotty hair.

I wish each of you the best of luck as you prepare your cattle for the summer shows. I can’t wait to pull my girls back in and begin prettying them up for our state field day, regionals, and nationals. See you and your fresh conditioned, fresh haired heifers soon!

Until next time,
Sarah