Tag Archives: Ranch Life

Environmental Awareness On The Homestead: No-Spill Fuel Can Eliminates Spilled Fuel

by Tammy Taylor~

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Living and working on a NE Texas ranch means RancherMan & I spend lots of time on our tractors.  He has a heavy-duty red beast and I have a smaller one that we affectionately call ‘Ole Blue’ .  She’s very reliable older-model Ford tractor.  When I became a breast cancer survivor, RancherMan painted the wheels of Ole Blue bright pink in celebration!  (How much do I love him??) 

Aaaaanyway he often prepares for the day’s tasks by fueling both tractors.  As much as I love ‘Ole Blue’ it always made my crunchy-green heart CRINGE when RancherMan would put fuel in her.  Almost every time the fuel would spill all along the top, drip down the sides and onto the grass. Of course I’d never say anything to him.  He knows how I hate it and he tries his best to deliver the fuel without spilling but…  With the design of the typical 5-gallon fuel can it was always hard to get the fuel from the can to my tractor’s fuel tank without splashing corrosive diesel on my tractor and even spilling some onto the pasture grass.  OOHHHH, my heart!  There just had to be a better way!

Hard as he may try, RancherMan would always splash fuel when filling my tractor's tank. Let's try this No-Spill can & see how it works! Pink Wheels On Ford Tractor #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Sun Protection: How To Protect Your Skin Without Sunscreen

by Tammy Taylor~

Working on a ranch means that RancherMan & I are outside day in & day out each & every day working on fences, immunizing calves, mowing the pastures, gardening and more!  Since our jobs require us to be outside all day long we take sun protection very seriously.  Sunscreen is touted to be a safe and effective way to protect your skin from the sun but I don’t like the feel of it on my skin, I don’t like the cost of it and since we’d have to use it so often I don’t like the trash that constantly buying sunscreen would create. (And to be perfectly honest I don’t know how I feel about slathering chemicals on my skin each and every day)  Although sunscreen still has its place in my sun protection arsenal, I recently wrote a piece for Mother Earth News outlining the 7 easy ways that we protect our skin without resorting to sunblock.

Sun Protection: A Mother Earth News article outlining the 7 easy ways to protect your skin from the sun without resorting to sunblock. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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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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