Agriculture … is our wisest pursuit, because it will in the end contribute most to real wealth, good morals & happiness.– Thomas Jefferson
If the daily dishwashing chores include the paraphernalia from the calf you’re bottle-feeding twice a day… you might be a ranch wife.
If the primary reason you use a dog crate is to shuffle excess roosters to the butchering pen, the older chickens to the chicken tractor and the baby chicks to the big chicken pen (while it’s raining, of course)… you might be a ranch wife.
If you come home from a 4H meeting and hear the backhoe running in the front yard because Papa and The Big One are butchering her first-ever buck in the front yard with Mom holding the flashlight in one hand and the camera in the other… you might be a ranch wife.
If — in addition to the always-present pocketknife, tin of lip salve and Leatherman multi-tool — your Levis pockets frequently contain such things as screws, pieces of string, nuts and bolts, chunks of obsidian, hay, empty seed packets and bits of broken glass or hay twine picked up in the pasture while feeding the cows… you might be a ranch wife.
If your cowboy husband calls sheep “meadow maggots” and considers goats fit only for target practice… you might be a ranch wife.
If your vehicle has a bumper sticker that reads “Eat beef — the West wasn’t won on salad”… you might be a ranch wife.
If you can back up a four-horse trailer without crying, swearing or the use of alcohol… you might be a ranch wife.
If you whip a Leatherman tool out of your purse to fix the bent tines on a restaurant fork… you might be a ranch wife.
If you and the kids can spend 30 minutes or more debating the finer points of watching lambs vs. piglets at play… you might be a ranch wife.
If you usually drive down the middle of a deserted country road at night because you have more maneuvering room when a deer leaps out of the brush… you might be a ranch wife.
If you sink into your favorite chair at night after a hard day and immediately leap back up because the screws you put in your pocket while fixing the sheep pen have stabbed you in the derriere… you might be a ranch wife.
If you are eighty-four years old and walking alone down the highway, in the dark, with a storm coming, because you had to go put in a cow that got out of the pasture… you might be a ranch wife.
If your idea of the perfect Christmas present is a Buck Oldtimer pocket knife (thank you, Dear!)… you might be a ranch wife.
If you have ever grossed out some of your more sheltered friends with “processing” stories… you might be a ranch wife.
If you call your husband asking where the best firearm is to shoot the three very healthy coyotes that just ran in front of the car… you might be a ranch wife.
If, after sending your spouse to the doctor after he tried to cut his thumb off, you end up on speakerphone, using available vehicles for lighting, being walked through how to process (i.e. gut) some kind of animal… you might be a ranch wife.
If your definition of a “flash mob” is the chickens hitting the gate en masse when they hear the rattle of the feed bucket… you might be a ranch wife.
If you have ever pressed your Cusinart food processor into service to grind some feed for the old broodmare because she’s having trouble chewing… you might be a ranch wife.
If you have scrounged around in your pie tins looking for a suitable chicken feeder… you might be a ranch wife.
If you’ve ever jumped up and run outside in your nightgown to chase the deer that are eating your chard… you might be a ranch wife.
If you can predict the weather for the next three days just as well as the local meteorologist… you might be a ranch wife.
If you think watching baby pigs is just as entertaining as going to the movies… you might be a ranch wife.
If you have ever had newborn livestock in your house because it’s too cold, wet or windy outside… you might be a ranch wife.
If your refrigerator contains a big bottle of veterinary penicillin between the raw milk and the free range eggs… you might be a ranch wife.
If you sweep the floor every day and it still always looks as though a herd of very dirty elephants has just been to visit… you might be a ranch wife.
If you’ve ever rigged a temporary pen for baby turkeys out of a cardboard box, covered it with your oven baking racks and weighted it down with a few bricks to keep the cats out… you might be a ranch wife.
If you know that the best way to get fresh pitch off your hands is to use butter… you might be a ranch wife.
If everything in your ornamental garden has to be deer, steer, sheep, goat, chicken, kid, dog and cat proof (cactus is about the best option unless you live in the far north) … you might be a ranch wife.
If in addition to husbands and children you can call chickens, cows, horses and pigs to a meal… you might be a ranch wife.
If your immediate response to a rattlesnake in your garden or a mouse in your kitchen is violence rather than a shrieking retreat… you might be a ranch wife.
If your “town” clothes consist of a clean tee shirt and the least stained jeans you can find… you might be a ranch wife.
If your first reaction to a cow pooping on your front lawn is “Oh, good, now I don’t have to haul fertilizer to the flowerbed” … you might be a ranch wife.
If the integral components of your weight lifting program are small children, buckets of pig slop, firewood and bales of hay… you might be a ranch wife.
If you tell the repairman that the noise your dishwasher is making sounds “just like a fuel-starved John Deere” … you might be a ranch wife.
I just made huckleberry blueberry jam. I did pour hot jam into sterilized jars and used sterilized lids (i boiled them). I did not do water bath. Inverted the jars. A few lids popped right away, and some are taking a while to pop. I’m getting a little nervous. How long does it usually take for the lids to pop? And what if the rest of the lids don’t pop? I made this jam late in the evening, hoping the lids will pop by tomorrow morning. I was happy to have found your web site.
It can take some time for jars to seal. Check them by putting a finger in the center and pushing down slightly, or by lifting them while holding onto the lid. A sealed lid will be indented or will indent and stay there when you press. A sealed lid will stay sealed when you lift by the lid edge (keep the other hand under the jar just in case). If neither of these inidicate a sealed lid, store in the fridge and use within a few weeks.
Fun post, I actually had a good time reading it, keep doing all the good efforts.
You might be my role models. Thanks for that write-up
Loved this! I just had my washer go out and described the sound to my husband (a farmer/rancher): “It sounds like an Thrush spraying a rice field…you know a turbine engine…it’s not suppose to be that loud…”
I’m enjoying your blog. I’ll take the time Sunday after working in the garden to read it from start to hopefully finish.
Lynda, glad to have you with us, and thanks for commenting. Based on your post, I’d say you definitely qualify as a ranch wife!