Tuesday, December 30, 2008


As usual going into a New Year, I plan my goals for the following year. This year it's much harder for some reason, maybe the general apathy I feel after my Dad's death this year has made me less driven. Anyway, I have decided to paint animals this year, Herefords in honor of my Dad. He loved his Herefords and he picked them for their "conformation", something I never quite got the feeling of. So, this year I am going to study our cattle from old photos and paint some of them grazing and at their winter feeding station.
Feeding them in Southwestern North Dakota in the winter was a challenge that most people will never know. Lucky them! Sometimes it took us as long to get dressed to go out to feed the cattle as it did to feed them. I can remember my Mom and I getting dressed up in our "storm coats" as she called them. My arms would barely bend with all the layers. The scarf around your mouth would immediately freeze at 30 to 38 below zero. It was a real scary time, the water in the tank had to be heated and broken through for the cows and the calves. We had to haul out the bales, some of which were pretty tightly frozen and packed together. The great life of a farmer/rancher in North Dakota! Wow.

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