Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Concealed Carry Woes

I am not someone who generally complains about my lot in life.  I think I have it pretty good, and work hard to maintain said status because I like it. However, today has been rather frustrating for me so please pardon this rant.

Some kids go on a bar run for their 21st birthday - I happen to have applied for, and received, my firearm concealed carry permit for my 21st birthday. This makes me an 11 year veteran *gasp* for concealed carry, and never once have I had to use my firearm. Praise Jesus!

Promptly upon moving to Idaho, I took advantage of the reciprocity agreement between Washington and Idaho, and received a firearm concealed carry permit in The Gem State. I am now licensed to carry in two states, and am working on becoming licensed in Oregon because living on the state line sees me frequently there. This will result in being licensed and trained to conceal carry a firearm in three states, with 11 years of experience.

No follow along closely from here because it gets very confusing! I am a University of Idaho employee, stationed in a county owned building, duly licensed and experienced to carry a firearm concealed on my person. Simple right? Ha! (sarcasm)

The University of Idaho passed a controversial statute allowing for concealed carry on campuses for Idaho Enhanced Conceal Carry licenses. My Washington license is the equivalent of the Idaho Enhanced license, however, I was not granted this level. I am enrolling in a course as soon as this entry is complete!

My county has a policy (pg. 100-101) stating no county employee but an on-duty law enforcement officer may carry a firearm (or pocket knife - which I am routinely guilty of, what farm kid isn't?). Remember, I am a University employee not a county employee.

The State of Idaho has preformed the required background checks into my life, previous licenses and residences and known alias' (which I don't have) and granted me the basic license to carry a firearm concealed in public areas (County ID # 1P3181). To add another level to the insanity, Idaho is also an open carry state: Meaning if I wanted to carry a loaded weapon around town I could.

I am running in circles and chasing my tail, watching the question of whether I can legally carry a firearm concealed in my office being pushed higher and higher up the ladder. Meanwhile, my frustration level is ratcheting up at a steady pace as I feel my 2nd Amendment rights being restricted.

Another anomaly I've encountered during this inquiry process is everyone seems to think something is wrong. As in I am fearful for my life, someone is threatening me, or I am going to go bat-shit (that one hasn't been voiced but it's there). Why does every one assume that? I wonder if I exude the weak and scared female vibe? I can honestly say if that's what people are picking up, it would literally be the first time in 32 years. Ha!

I will keep you all posted, but I don't look for this to be resolved at any time in the near future. I thought I'd include my philosophy on life today! :)

Monday, October 27, 2014

As some of you may know, I keep a small herd of Saanen milking goats, and these lovely ladies provide me with yogurt, cheese, ice cream, meat and of course milk! I currently have four full-sized milking does and two miniature milking does: Now when each one of the big girls produces rough a gallon and a half of milk per day you end up with a lot of milk! I use it all, but that's another story for another day.

In order for these lovely ladies to produce their copious amounts of milk, they have to kid, or have babies. Well, my rental property is backed up against the freeway, and on a flat area in the valley that gets quite a bit of wind, so I needed some way to keep these ladies and their babies safe, draft free and warm during kidding season. I couldn't afford a nice barn and those rent-to-own deals all have floors so I wasn't left with too many options.

Enter the West Virginia side of the family - AKA my dad's side. All the siblings were born, and with the exception of my father, raised on the multi-generational farm in West Virginia where everything from tail to snout (animal, vegetable, and mineral) was used, and then re-used! These ideals were never abandoned, and to this day I have one uncle who keeps a "museum" of old stuff for self-reliance, or because he thinks it's cool, or when SHTF.

Lord love my uncles and father, because they all came to the rescue when they heard my predicament about the goat barn. Salvaged lumber from previous projects was furnished, old
greenhouse siding was unearthed from the back-40 and given, posts from our sustainably harvested range/forest land were cut and gifted, and tin sheet-metal, which has seen the side of more than one building was compiled and donated to the cause.

Dad collected and loaded all these materials up and headed the five hours down to my house on a
Thursday after work, and by Sunday we had a functional shed for the ladies to utilize. We started with bare ground and went to a post-in-the-dirt, roof and sides covered and LOTS of "ventilation" holes from previous projects. This past Sunday I put up the very last pieces of the siding to close in the barn from weather. There are a few things I'm planning on adding when kidding season gets closer, but until then the ladies are enjoying their space out of the wind!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The beautiful bride!
Ok - obviously I've been neglectful in my blogging. I have excuses I promise! :) September and October have become akin to the April I had this year, which was busy let me tell you. I was on the interview trail during April, so much so that I was only "home" 17 days out of the whole month. Yowza!

September was chock full of meetings, fields days, Mom's birthday (the big 6-0), more meetings, beef harvesting (butchering), the Lost Rivers grazing Academy in beautiful Salmon, Idaho and the wedding of an amazing lady to an amazing guy! I was home for half of the weekends in September. Again, yowza!

Turkey number 1 of 3:56 lbs of meat overall.
October has been a bit more laid back than September - I'll be home three out of four weekends. Ha! Meetings, coaching team members from Idaho's state 4H livestock judging team, again with more meetings, a full week of new employee orientation in Moscow on the University of Idaho's campus, poultry harvesting, and my first evaluation as a UI Extension Educator are all on the docket for October. By this time yowza might not cover it. :)

However, my freezer is full, my pantry is going to be full once I get all the produce I picked up in the Yakima Valley canned-up, I've gotten to visit with my equally as busy brother and sister-in-law and parents. My girls (goats) are bred and in 4.5 months the babies will arrive, milk will flow, cheese and yogurt will be made and the bottle feeding of day-old calves will begin. My other girls (dogs) are very happy I'm home (and so am I!) that they want to cuddle all the time. I get a temporary roommate in December (I'm hosting a local ag student teacher).

I am very thankful for the opportunities I've had to re-establish relationships with friends and family, as well as begin new friendships with people in the area. As busy, and a yowza, as my life gets, I enjoy it. But I need a nap! ;)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Times they are a changin'.....

Three years! It has been three years since I posted on this blog, and let me tell you it has brought some big changes.

1) I took a job that moved me back to the Yakima Valley in Washington. I worked in a completely new career (agronomy) for a year and a half. Everything was going well, my custom livestock raising business was beginning to take off, I was asked to be a panelist for a Women in Ag conference, I found a place to rent in the country that was perfect and had an easy going landlord, and I finally graduated with my Masters degree! Then I was called into the boss' office one morning prior to a conference and was told I was being laid off. Holy crap! So I took some time to regroup and began a new job search.

2) I decided I didn't like the sales portion of my previous agronomy job and started searching for a position in Extension once again. After all, it has been a dream of mine since I was 16! So I claimed unemployment, raised animals to fulfill the contracts I had in progress and for my freezer, and applied for jobs. Once the interview processes began, I was ping-ponging all over the Western United States! In the month of April 2014, I was only home for 17 nights. I was one tired lady!

3) I accepted a position with the University of Idaho as the Small Acreage & Production Livestock Extension Educator for Canyon county. I am in my 2nd month of the job and so far I'm loving it! It's the perfect blend of concepts to satisfy my inner hippy and yet also my practical side by working with area dairymen and cattlemen. I have kept my goat herd and one breeding pair of sheep and plan to begin anew with my custom livestock raising project. I have been laying out breeding plans, and tracking down bottle calves and hay for the winter.

I am happy to be working again and be able to follow my personal vision to operate Cherryview Creek Custom Livestock in Fruitland, ID and I promise to do a much better job blogging! :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Chickens...Clucking Brilliant!

If you've been keeping up with my blog you know I've had wretched luck with chickens this year! So I decided to bite the bullet and buy one of those per-fabricated coops online. The Chicken Saloon received my business and shipped "The Corral" in a timely manner. Everything arrived intact and all the parts were there. Yippee! The FedEx guy brings me wonderful things. :)

This is supposed to house 3-4 full-sized chickens. I always like the animals to have plenty of room so I've got only two chicks in there. Later on I might add one more hen, probably a banty. I like it for the nest boxes and it looks like a little barn. Cute! Those are some happy little hen chicks. I'm looking forward to seeing those beautiful Silver Laced Wyandottes and their yummy eggs, hopefully in the spring! :)

We've also ad some bad luck concerning dogs. Yotee got away from me the other day and went to chase cars. He was hit by one which didn't slow down or stop to see if he was still alive. I was not happy about that! What if it was their dog? Wouldn't they want someone to do that for them? Anyways, Yotee came out of it with only a tibial fracture and will be in a rigid splint for roughly 8 weeks. He just had his wrappings changed and is now sporting a hot pink right, rear leg! He is ashamed. This is a picture a few days after it happened. That's the new guy, Kooper, in the background. Yotee's a bit crabby at the moment, but they play and have fun when they can. Kooper is currently upstairs barking at himself in the mirror...see what I'm working with? :)

We had our first hard frost last night, which is one whole month PAST the average frost dates for this area. I have to say I've enjoyed it immensely, but alas, winter is definitely on its way. *sigh* I decided to clean-up my little garden since there won't be anymore growing weather. I had a pleasant surprise at the amount of food I was able to get. I'm already planning on what I want to do next year. *teehee* What you see here are parsley, chives, rosemary, pumpkins, and tomatoes. Pretty good haul for being a bad year and learning how to garden in a whole new climate! Kinda proud. :)

And look at all food for my goaties! Glorious because they really, really like their forages! They're not really sure how they feel about the pumpkin plants yet, but I'm confident it wall get eaten! They love green things to eat! :)

I was able to mulch my strawberries before the frost. Thanks to purchasing a "bale" of cedar chips for the chickens, I ended up with a ton of extra and put it to good use!

I did way better with the pumpkin growing than I thought I would and now will have some for decoration at home and work. I'm hoping they ripen up though I have no idea if that will happen. Anyone out there know?
                                                  Happy Fall Ya'll! :)