Tag Archives: Ranch Life

Beginning Beekeeping: Expanding The Hive

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I are beginning beekeepers learning to raise our own hives of bees using the popular Langstroth hive.  If you’ve been following our Beekeeping Series, you’ll know we’ve already discussed preparation steps before you ever get your bees, then the steps needed when you actually receive your bees and even another post about internal hive inspections needed periodically.  (I’ve added links to all of those posts below)  But now you have your bees, you’ve kept up your periodical hive inspection and are wondering if you need to give your bees room to expand, so today we’re talking about how to tell when it’s time to expand the hive.

Beginning Beekeeping Series: Today we're talking about why and how to expand your bee hives. (We're using Langstroth hives) #TaylorMadeHomestead Continue reading

Sun Protection: Rigid Canopy for Our Mid-Size Tractor

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I work outside every day, rain or shine.  We’re either working cattle or fixing fences.  There’s garden work and tractor work.  Day in, day out – we’re outside working.  Now we LOVE our lives here don’t get me wrong, but sun protection is something we take very seriously.  RancherMan made sure I had a heavy canvas canopy to protect me from the sun when I’m on my small blue Ford 32 hp tractor but his larger tractor didn’t come with a canopy, just a ROPS (roll bar).  Now I hated that he wasn’t protected and constantly nagged I mean reasoned with him to get something to protect himself from the sun.  But he protested mightily, saying: “I’m having trouble finding one that fits the ROPS on my tractor.  Plus I’d want a rigid canopy, and since I work around trees sometimes when I’m mowing or clearing I just don’t know if I should get one for my tractor”

Sun protection is important! We needed a canopy to be properly protected from the sun while on our tractors. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Using Repurposed Denim To make Backyard Game Bags

by Tammy Taylor~

*contains affiliate link

As y’all already know, RancherMan & I wanted a personalized Ranch-Themed Cornhole game for our annual family reunion (ie: RanchFest) that we host each year.  We bought the materials and RancherMan got busy building the customized ranch-themed cornhole game.  Although we could have simply *purchased the bags to go with the game, I wanted to make the cornhole bags myself using my stash of denim scraps from RancherMan’s ripped jeans.  Luckily it was super easy even for a novice seamstress like myself.  (Oh c’mon, I don’t think I can’t call myself a seamstress, even a NOVICE one!)   But if I can do it, ANYONE can!  Come see how easy it is to whip up these cornhole bags yourself.

We needed 8 bags to go with our custom Cornhole Game. Look how easy it is to make your own Cornhole Game Bags - they turned out GREAT! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Homestead Hack: Separating Cream From Fresh Milk

by Tammy Taylor~

As many of you know, recently I had to bring a mama cow into the barn recently.  We had to milk out one of her quads since her newborn calf neglected it long enough for it to get very large.  I didn’t want to risk her getting mastitis.  And the longer the calf neglected it the larger it became.  Although our cows are not a dairy breed, she gave me about a half gallon of fresh milk from just that one quad!  I’d never milked a cow before & I was pretty excited to get that fresh milk, so I sat out to put it all to good use.  I decided to make homemade yogurt with it, but I had trouble skimming the cream easily.  So I turned to my Facebook Followers to find out how they easily skimmed the cream from the milk.

I was looking for an easy way to separate cream from fresh milk. A spoon was too time consuming, a gravy separator was better, but check this Homestead Hack! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How To Build Your Own Cornhole Game

by Tammy Taylor~

*contains affiliate link

Cornhole games – all of a sudden it seems they’re EVERYWHERE!  It’s a fun game where each team stands 27 feet away from a tilted platform with a hole cut in it and tosses a corn-filled bag at the platform trying to make it go into the hole.  The team that reaches 21 points first wins!  RancherMan & I attended a festival recently with my brother & SIL and we saw there was yet another Cornhole game there, so we all joined in on the fun and it was a super-fun evening.  After that experience our wheels started to turn.  We host an annual family reunion at the ranch that we’ve named ‘RanchFest’ and it always involves competitive games.  We always make our games ranch related, so we sat out to make our own customized cornhole game.

We wanted to make our own custom Cornhole Game for our family reunion. Thankfully it was EASY and it turned out way cute! Check it out. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Beginning Beekeeping: Inspecting Bee Hives

~by Tammy Taylor~

Welcome back to the Beginning Beekeeping Series.  We’re still NewBEES but there are many who are interested in raising bees, so we’ve been asked to blog about our experience.  I’ve written about the beekeeping preparation steps that were necessary before we ever obtained our first bees in this Preparation Post, and I’ve written another post about what to do when you actually Obtain your Bees, so if you haven’t read those posts be sure to check them out.  But now that we have our bees we know you don’t just put ’em out there & let them do their thing…  There’s a rhythm to tending to the hives to assure a healthy, thriving, productive hive.

We have the hives, we have the bees - what's next? Come with us as we inspect the inside of the bee hives! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Mother Earth News: Fenceline Weaning

by Tammy Taylor~

I recently wrote a post for Mother Earth News about the benefits of fence-line weaning.  Any animal caregiver knows there’s more to weaning than simply separating mama & baby.  Fenceline weaning helps reduce the stresses on both mama and baby and helps the transition go smoother, but there are important steps to be taken before weaning ever begins for it to be successful.  Come see how we prepare calves and dams for this transition and reduce their stress at the same time.

There are important steps to be taken before weaning ever begins for it to be successful. See our tips on successful fence-line weaning #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Beginning Beekeeping: Obtaining Your Bees

~by Tammy Taylor~

Last week we talked about the beekeeping preparation steps that were necessary before we ever obtained our first bees.  There was lots to do: Educate ourselves on best beekeeping practices, join a local beekeeper’s association, decide where our hives will be located, prepare the location for the hives, obtain the beekeeping protective clothing and the bee hive expansion boxes and frames.  RancherMan even built an elevated stand for the hives.  Then we used heavy-duty cattle panels to section off the hive pen from the cattle pen.  All of these details are listed on last week’s Preparation Post, so if you haven’t read it be sure to check it out.  But now that we’re all ready, let’s get those bees!

We're new to beekeeping and have learned much, with much yet to learn. See what we did when we brought our first hives of bees home! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Beginning Beekeeping: Becoming A NewBee

by Tammy Taylor~

*affiliate link

RancherMan & I love raising cattle, and we added chickens to the mix because they’re so much fun and, you know, EGGS!  But we were wondering what (if anything) we’d like to add to our current barnyard fun.  We’d tried raising goats but that just wasn’t for us, but then RancherMan hit on an idea:  How about BEES?  His thought is that bees will help keep the garden pollinated, and I’ll hopefully finally be able to obtain local honey that includes ragweed pollen to try to treat my allergies naturally.  Sounds like fun – let’s jump in! We’ve never kept bees before so we’re NewBees(groaaaann…)  There’s a lot to do before we actually receive any bees, come see how we prepared.

We've never kept bees before so we're NewBees! There's a lot to do before we actually receive any bees, come see how we prepared. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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