Looking Back – 2004

Here’s an old article and our operation has changed a little bit, but we still very much appreciate and use management-intensive grazing (MIG).  All our pastures are subdivided into 20 acres or less paddocks with hi-tensile electric wire.  With the focus on managing the grazing, our animals and soil benefit from good health.

MFGC/GLCI is hosting their 2015 annual conference this week (2-3 Nov) at the Resort at Port Arrowhead, Lake Ozark, Missouri.  

Allen & Tauna Powell Named 2004 “Grasslanders of the Year”
A Linn County farm family was named “grasslanders” at the Missouri Forage and Grassland Council annual meeting at the Lake of the Ozarks in November, 2004.

Allen and Tauna Powell, Laclede, Mo., were named Grasslanders of the Year. The Powells operate a 3000-acre farm stocked with 800 cows that use management-intensive grazing systems. Though the majority of their calves are marketed through traditional commodity channels, the last couple years, they have been finishing calves on grass only and marketing the beef locally and on the Internet.

The Powells learned grass management techniques at grazing schools at the University of Missouri Forage Systems Research Center near Linneus, Mo.

They now serve on the advisory board for the research farm and have been instructors at the grazing schools.

The award was accepted by the family, which includes Jessica, 12; Dallas, 11; and Nathan, 8. The children are home schooled and attended the educational meetings at the MFGC conference after doing their regular homework.

Tauna said, “I thought raising pasture-finished beef was a crazy idea when I first heard it from Fred Martz (former superintendent of MU FSRC.) Now, 12 years later, we are doing it.”

MFGC is an educational association made up of graziers, educators, agency representatives and businesses. It provides support for state and regional grazing schools.

They have also initiated and support a grassland evaluation contest for high school students and travel scholarships for college students attending national meetings.

The Powells were nominated by Fred Martz, retired MU professor and grassland farmer at Columbia, Mo.

Management-intensive grazing improves production and health of pastures, increases livestock gains per acre, and reduces soil erosion. The system is based on dividing large pastures into smaller grazing paddocks. Livestock are moved every few days to give forage time to rest and regrow. Livestock always has fresh pasture to graze.

For more information about the Missouri Forage and Grasslands Council go to their web site athttp://agebb.missouri.edu/mfgc/

Food Waste in the UK

Speak boldly  Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall!

From BBC News Magazine

Viewpoint: The rejected vegetables that aren’t even wonky

There is little doubt this situation is just as bad in the US and around the world.  Yet the big food companies (not food producers) tell us we’ll all starve if we don’t buy their products to produce more food.  It’s a pack of lies.  We waste far too much food.  What we have is a distribution problem and in the first world countries we have so much food that we are incredibly picky.

Food waste is a subject i feel is important – as a cattle rancher and mom, i hear a lot of people complain (in the US) about the high cost of food, yet most producers (meats, eggs, chicken, vegetables, fruit) barely scrape out a living.  The facts are that the cost of production continues to skyrocket, yet, by and large, the producer’s income has remained stagnant while the consumer’s cost has risen only a little.  The margins are very thin and oftentimes only the much aligned farm subsidies provided by the govt are the difference between going another year and losing the farm.  We could utilise our resources much more efficiently and produce a great deal more foodstuffs.  But there is no reason to do so.  Food is so cheap, we would simply lose money.

That huge pile of parsnips that Mr Fearnly-Whittingstall is standing in front of could consumed by cattle or sheep or just returned to the soil to be ploughed back in, but will it?  For sure, the food you throw into your bin at home will go only to the landfill.

Okay, i’ll step off my soapbox now!  😉

Cheers!

tauna

BBC magazine supermarketveg

Sunshine Blogger Award Nomination

Some time ago, a fellow blogger at Life As I Interpret It, nominated me for a Sunshine Blogger Award.  Thank you very much.  I would encourage visiting her blog since she is bold in sharing real life struggles and challenges in cutting back in a realistic manner without sacrificing small pleasures.

However, not really knowing how to go about responding, I kept putting off responding to the nomination, so here goes.

Here are the instructions:

The rules for this award are below (copied and pasted from the nominator’s site):

  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Answer the questions from the person who has nominated you.
  • Nominate some other bloggers for this award.
  • Write the same amount of questions for the bloggers you have nominated.
  • Notify the bloggers you have nominated

My questions to the nominees are as follows:

  1. What is the most interesting blogging experience you have had?  Hmm – really haven’t had any interesting experiences blogging, but when my son posted a dual credit course paper about his great aunt and uncle’s Charolais business, it busted way off the charts!  that was exciting.  Lonely Statues                                                            
  2. If you were to be given an extraordinary amount of cash, what would be the first thing that appear in your mind?  How much income tax am i going to have to pay!!!???
  3. What do you think about frugality and what are your best advice to achieve it?  I‘m all for frugality!  It goes along with thankfulness in my mind.  But unless you are driven to live frugally or must because of finances, go ahead and live it up!  Somebody’s gotta buy a $1000 pair of shoes, don’t they?  How to achieve it?  
    Found tw 100% wool coats for working in - total cost was $7 for both.
    Found two 100% wool coats for working in – total cost was $7 for both.

    For us, it is buying second hand clothing for the most part, buying organic food in bulk (not prepared foods – but flour, sugar, cases of frozen veggies, etc and hold out for when it’s on sale). If we want to read a new book, we get it through inter-library loan rather than purchasing.  And, in general, just really consider whether or not we need to make a purchase. 

  4. Have you ever had a pet? What is your most cherished memory about it? Yes, many since i was very young.  They are treasured memories.  My most memorable that is gone now is my Quarter horse, See Sum Hum.  
    Here's my old horse, See Sum Hum and me.  We are both clearly past our prime, but we were having fun that day running the barrels.
    Here’s my old horse, See Sum Hum and me several years ago. We are both clearly past our prime, but we were having fun that day running the barrels. He always wanted to drop a shoulder into that second barrel and knocking it over, so i had a tendency to take him a bit wide and pick him up a bit. Added about a second to our time, but that was better than the 5 second penalty of knocking over the barrel. He was the best horse i will ever own.

    My grandparents bought him for me (when i was 16) at auction as a burnt out barrel racing horse – i loved him to pieces.  We raced barrels, pole bending, flag racing and whatever else i put in front of him -he was game.  Didn’t have a lick of cow sense, but he would always do what i asked, so we were a great team.  He was four when he came home with me, but died a few years back at the ripe old age of 29 – we were mates.  (i’m gonna cry now.)

    Thunder relaxing on the porch table.
    Thunder relaxing on the porch table.

      Currently, we have an old farm cat we call Thunder.  He is 15 years old and still going strong.  Still quite the hunter and frequently brings his prey to the door for our approval.  Pretty much an outdoor cat, except he likes to come in when it’s cold now.A beautiful stray kitten showed up at the seed plant last fall and we were able to save him.  My son named him ‘Ashes.’Ashes 2015

  5. What else do you think can be done to reduce the burden of cancer in our communities/countries/world?  By and large, many cancers can be avoided with proper diet and environment.  Not all, but a good many.  So if that is the case, individuals have to be accountable – i can’t change anyone or anything.
  6. Which is more annoying?  rain or snow? a bone chilling rain is worse than a dry snow, but a gentle warm spring rain is better than any snow.Misty Rain

Now, for the questions I pass on to bloggers I nominate.

  1.  What country or city do you want to visit the most?  What makes it so appealing?
  2.  Your favourite vacation would be adventure? history? relaxation? other? or all of these?
  3. Do you buy organic or locally grown food when you can?  or do you grow your own?
  4. What magazine or newspaper do you read the most?
  5. Do you drive a car, pickup, motorcycle, or something else as your regular vehicle?
  6. What would you like to learn more about?

Passing on the nomination to:

Cheryl “Cheffie Cooks” Wiser– Now, she actually manages and writes several blogs!  Check them out for great ideas on cooking and living!

Faithful Homestead – Jennifer tells a great story of day to day homeschooling, farming, and homesteading.

Grace In Torah – VERY insightful and thoughtful teachings about living in Torah.

Sale Day or “What’s Wrong with my Shirt?”

During the course of the year, we sell our calves as they reach a weight that is valuable in the marketplace – this may mean we’ll have 3 or 4 days which we sell groups of calves.  Monday was such a day with 200 head going to market at North Missouri Livestock Auction in Milan, MO.  (also find them on facebook)

Calves resting in the shade. These will be sold on Monday.
Calves resting in the shade. These will be sold on Monday.  Description:  200 Hd mixed Steers and Heifers, Red, RWF, Black, BWF 500-650 lbs, 2 Rd Shots of IBR-BVD-PI3 & 7-way. Steers cut with knife, Heifers Calfhood vaccinated. All work done by Brookfield Vet Clinic. Weaned and growing on grass. No grain, NO IMPLANTS

The calves had already been sorted, so Monday morning just meant gouping into trailer load lots.  The number in each lot varied by trailer size.

John brought the Ford up earlier and I pulled in here with the Dodge. Once the white pickup trailer was loaded, I took it on up to Milan.
John brought the Ford up earlier and I pulled in here with the Dodge and trailer that is almost identical to the one shown here. Once the white pickup trailer was loaded, I took it on up to Milan.

Our little stock trailers are 7ft by 24 ft, so we can haul about 25 head of the five weight calves.  I was the first one to load out for the trip to Milan and would return for a second load.  Roundtrip is about an hour and 15 minutes.

Now that my husband has sold some of his calves, he’s offered to buy me a new shirt.  WHAT!  Aint’ nuthin’ wrong with my shirt?! 😉

2015 summer work shirt. 100% cotton - Second hand price $1.00. Yup, i'll toss it at the end of the season.
2015 summer work shirt. 100% cotton – Second hand price $1.00. Yup, i’ll toss it at the end of the season.

Joel Salatin – Farm Marketer Extraordinaire!

Joel Salatin of Polyface Farmshttp://www.polyfacefarms.com/speaking-protocol/joels-bio/ is recognised around the world as a no nonsense, say it the way it is kind of farmer and marketer.  His ideas are proven to work in his area (highly populated with customers), but the ground rules can work anywhere and even in the commodity markets.  Some of his advice here needs more explanation, but most are just cut-to-the-chase, get ‘er done stuff.  GO!

Here’s a quick interview with a reporter from Modern Farmer

Five-Minute Mentor: Farming Advice from Joel Salatin

Walt Disney – Marceline, Missouri

Most people know that Walt Disney was born in Chicago, but was raised in Marceline, Missouri (just 15 minutes down the road from us) and that some of his famous parks include memories from his boyhood home.  Keep updated on the Walt Disney Hometown Museum facebook page.  What I just read about is that, on 3 Oct 2015, he was inducted into the International Space Hall of Fame as a U.S. entrepreneur, animator , and producer.  According to the article in Group Tour Western magazine,  “The Inductee Class of 2015 embodies the true spirit of space exploration by a group of men who, although they never went to space themselves, believed in the future and possibilities of exploring the universe.” (Chris Orwoll, New Mexico Museum of Space History executive director).

New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo, NM

“Best known for his work in animation and popular entertainment, Walt Disney created what is today the largest entertainment empire in history. In the mid-1950s, he worked with Werner von Braun on several iconic, “science factual,” animated films on science and science fiction subjects, most notably Man in Space, Man and the Moon, and Mars and Beyond. These were designed to be both educational and entertaining, which not only led to millions of people around the world learning about the future of space exploration, but also impacted the development of the United States space program and initiatives. Disney built several futuristic attractions to be included in Tomorrowland at his amusement park, Disneyland. His enduring interest in the future of space exploration was recognized in 1980, when a minor planet, 4017 Disneya, was named in his honor.

On July 22, The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco will open a new exhibition titledTomorrowland: Walt’s Vision for Today. The exhibition showcases Walt Disney as a “technological innovator, science fiction storyteller, and futurologist by spotlighting his vision of Disneyland’s groundbreaking Tomorrowland and its complete and revolutionary 1967 rebuild.” Academy Award-winning director, writer, and producer Brad Bird (The Incredibles,Ratatouille, and Tomorrowland) guest-curated the exhibit.”

Additionally, on view through 3 Jan 2016 at The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco is “Disney and Dali: Architects of the Imagination.”    Check out more information at the Walt Disney Family Museum.  Or call them for bookings (415) 345.6853.