Behind Door Number 3 - Home on the Range Blog at - 291925

Home on the Range

Behind Door Number 3 
Dec. 12, 2012 1:49 pm 
Updated: Dec. 24, 2012 1:36 am

I seem to be able to find excitement in the most unlikely places. I was too tired to fix dinner the other night, so I talked Randyman into “Frito boats” which is just Fritos covered with canned chili, you know, gourmet stuff like you’d find at a Little League game. True to form, the lid would NOT come off the can and multiple attempts with the can opener were no help. I grabbed a spoon and started trying to PRY the lid off and my hand slipped. The tin lid sliced through the flesh on my trigger finger like a hot knife through butter. It cut from the center on top, around almost to the center bottom. Luckily, I don’t think it hit bone and rather than spurting, the blood just flowed freely, so no arteries or anything had been cut. It was time to find out how tough I really am. 

Driving 5 hours to an emergency hospital and spending outrageous amounts of money on fuel and medical bills over a finger was NOT an option.
So, I could choose to visit the cowboss over at the next ranch who has all the equipment to suture wounds on dogs, horses and the like, WITHOUT the benefit of anesthetic, or I could just doctor it myself and beg Randy to wrap it up.

You learn a lot about yourself in situations such as this. I learned that I am a big coward and I opted to douse it with peroxide, seal it with superglue and have Randy wrap it heavily, with a splint, so it cannot bend and break open. It’s doing okay and I am tenaciously learning how to work around not having the use of my right trigger finger which, apparently is the only one that works efficiently with an opposable thumb. The damaged digit does get in the way, but so far I have been fairly successful in most of my undertakings, with a little help.

Luckily I had already made bread and the peach pie was ready to go in the oven. 

Two stalks of celery have already been dehydrated and put in a jar for use in stews, soups and other dishes later in the year...or even next year, although I will be dehydrating a LOT more before then.

Yes, amazingly this is what 2 stalks of celery look like once they are dehydrated.

It got very cold and windy and looked as though it might storm again last night so I fed everyone early. I have to separate EmmaLou and give her extra hay and grain because she is lactating and will lose weight. To do this, the sheep have to be out of sight, preferably out in the big milk pasture, or they steal all her food. They are like 'pasture piranhas'. I had shut the gate to the alley so they couldn't get in, although they usually stay out until their normal feed time so I figured they would be clueless about Emma getting extra rations. Unfortunately, last night they wanted in early. I made them wait while EmmaLou stood next to me eating her goodies on my side of the fence. 

The offended woolies (technically, they are ‘hairies’ but that just doesn’t sound right) stood behind a gate glaring at us with Cletus looking on and loudly voiced their displeasure until I put Em back in her pasture. I had NO idea sheep were so vindictive, but after I let them in and opened the gate to the first corral, they mobbed said gate and knocked me down in the mud on their way over the top of me. Somewhat irritated, I pushed my way past them and opened one of the 3 big doors on the solid panels by the milkroom/feedroom, craftily slipping through without any sheep leaking in. I grabbed a little  grain and put it in their feeder in the next corral over, through a third door, so they wouldn’t knock me down by rushing me while I walked there with it to the feed bucket. I then carefully  let them in and stood behind the solid door where I would, in theory, remain safe and undetected.


 500+ lb of sheep all hit the door at the same time, causing said door to make full body contact with me, at about the speed of light and sandwich me into the fence behind. I broke 3 fingernails below the quick and found myself too breathless to holler at them. After I recovered somewhat, I finished my outside chores and headed to the house to fix dinner.

When Randyman came home, I was relating the hair raising and death defying experience I’d had and he had the nerve to burst out laughing, resulting in no pie for him.

I see little humor in imagining a tombstone left on a working cattle ranch proclaiming the occupant below had been killed in a stampede...of sheep. It could happen.

There has still been no romance between EmmaLouMoo and BennytheBull, but at least they are finally on speaking terms. There has been quite a bit of rain and it has made the pasture they are in very muddy and slippery, so, for fear of one or both of them being injured when and if she finally DOES come into heat, we had to move everyone and I do mean, everyone! Mister is less than favorably impressed with the new accomodations, but found the mini-bar in the adjoining room to be a nice feature.

I headed out to the back pasture and brought Mister in while Randyman risked his life putting the sheep behind the milk shed. We (he) tied panels together and filled the wheelbarrow up with hay and we (he) let the cows out so they would follow him down the alley and out to the pasture Mister HAD been residing in. The footing out there is much safer. Instead of following him, EmmaLou, Sushi and Benny gleefully headed over to the hay stack to see if they could get through the barrier we (he) put up and have themselves a buffet breakfast. We (me) grabbed a bucket of grain and a shepherds hook and headed their way. Emma was the first to realize her error. She obediently followed the wheelbarrow, sampling the contents all the way to the new pasture, while I walked behind the bull with my long hook, without which I am not very courageous. All the while Sushi ran around us in circles, bucking and kicking up her heels. She, unlike her mother, is quite enamored of the bull. She only pays attention to Emma long enough to fill up with milk, then goes back to making ‘big cow eyes’ at Benny. She is going to be a handful as a teenager. I thank the good Lord she’s not human or I would have to lock her up for years on end.  The good news is, she WILL be ready to breed by this time next year, providing she sweetens up and shows promise of making a decent milk cow. 

We got the hungry little trio into Mister’s pasture and hopefully Benny and Em will consummate their relationship and remain there instead of jumping the fence and leaving the country. We shall see.

* There are still some nice soaps on hand for Christmas gifting :)
Dec. 12, 2012 2:01 pm
hope the finger heals quickly- and the nails- i just love your stories- i always feel as though i am right in the pasture along with you-judy-
Dec. 12, 2012 2:36 pm
After Randyman's reaction, to your near crushing by sheep, I would think he might have something in common with Bennythebull. Hope that is the end of misadventures for some time.
Dec. 12, 2012 3:10 pm
Oh, Petey, heal well and quickly. And thank you thank you for not showing photos of your fingers!
Dec. 12, 2012 3:12 pm
OuCh! I can feel the pain ... This summer I stupidly stuck my fingers in the blades of an immersion blender (to clean it with a paper towel) but the stupid thing was still plugged in and I turned it on. Thank goodness the hospital is only 5 minutes aways. Take care of those fingers, hope they heal well.
Dec. 12, 2012 3:16 pm
Petey your stories are always an adventure that I love to read. I could just picture you slicing your finger open and getting smushed by the sheep. I am sorry has been a rough time for you. I hope that you heal quickly!
Dec. 12, 2012 3:30 pm
OUCH!! Love your stories got to admit I also laughed with Randyman! lol heal qickly so you can get back at it! :)
Dec. 12, 2012 3:32 pm
Thanks :) The finger is doing infection. Just gonna take awhile. As for the sheep...well...two of them are going in the freezer soon and maybe that will even the odds more if not the score! haha
Dec. 12, 2012 4:49 pm
just great paint with words pictures in my head! of course the pictures themselves resonate wit great pride. the 1st picture of the fog is terrific! i hope all your fingers get back in better shape. gal, you were built for a farm...but better yet as a writer. you truly do paint a beautiful picture with words.
Dec. 12, 2012 5:27 pm
thanks, gderr, that is really nice to say! :)
Dec. 12, 2012 5:29 pm
That was a good one petey! Laughed a lot, but I am sorry about your digit. I hope you get better fast and have full use!
Dec. 12, 2012 6:10 pm
It seems the sheep are'nt the only vindictive life at your ranch, Petey. Denying Randyman pie? Just for seeing a little humor in your misadventure? ... (My wife would have been far more vindictive, though. Far more.
Dec. 12, 2012 7:52 pm
Really love your stories.I hope your finger and nails heal fast.I still think you should write a book. Thank you and have a very Merry Christmas.
Dec. 13, 2012 5:02 am
Petey, your written words and beautiful photography always touch my heart and soul like no other writer on Allrecipes. I am sorry that you have been injured and it is my sincere prayer that you will heal quickly. Thank you for sharing just a small glimpse into your life. You are such a blessing - Merry Christmas Petey! PS tell Randyman that I have the official word - he has now been removed from Santa's NICE list and placed on the NAUGHTY list for laughing :)
Dec. 13, 2012 7:16 am
haha! You guys are great! He is officially on the naughty list now! LOL Thanks so much for the well wishes and the finger appears to be healing nicely :)
Dec. 13, 2012 7:44 am
Petey-no one can ever say you live a boring life. I hope you are healing up from all the excitement and injuries. I love the dried celery-Now I want a food dehydrator. Be Well,my friend!
Dec. 13, 2012 7:58 am
You ARE a tough Petey! I would be such a big baby had I cut my finger like you did. Life on a ranch is not for sissies, that's for sure. I'm hoping your finger heals without any lingering problems. BTW, the top picture truly depicts our beautiful and wonderous Oregon in late fall. Simply beautiful!
Dec. 13, 2012 8:49 am
Yikes! Sounds like you have had too much fun of late! I can relate with the hand pain. My DH watched me pull a wood loaded wheelbarrow backsward into the log splitter, pinching one hand between the handle and the immovable splitter. No blood just pain, bruising and a lot of GLARING with under the breath comments! Get well soon!
Dec. 13, 2012 11:01 am
petey, one of your greatest talents is making lemonade of life's lemons! Love the mist-softened picture of the barn--it looks as if it came from a long-past memory. Hope your finger heals quickly, and with minimal scarring or loss of sensation!
Dec. 13, 2012 12:48 pm
Another great blog - as always. And just in case anyone is looking for a great Christmas gift - either for yourself or someone else - Petey's soaps are wonderful - silky paradise!
Dec. 13, 2012 1:19 pm
I have been avoiding posting a comment to your blog as I am trying to think of a witty, smart@ss comment about dodging rams. A chrysler girl for the most part-and it is not coming to me at all. All I can think of is Dodge the Randyman, Ram the Petey and that just does not seem witty enough....will contemplate some more.
Dec. 13, 2012 4:34 pm
The animals are getting restless . . . just an initial foray by the sheep before all the animals launch a full blown attack in a take over of the ranch. Randyman and you will be working for them . . . Animal Farm-George Orwell *** *** hope that itchy trigger finger heals quickly!
Dec. 13, 2012 5:47 pm
So sorry to hear about your bad luck, but glad it is all temporary. I love to read your blogs and feel like I am "there" while it is all happening! Keep it coming and heal quickly!
Dec. 13, 2012 6:19 pm
Wonderful/tragic/humorous/witty- You've got it all! Recover quickly, and Merry Christmas to you and Randyman!
Dec. 14, 2012 6:34 am about being stuck between a rock and a hard spot. Hope you heal quickly and keep those typng fingers from harm. Your blog readers would miss you so much! Mele Kalikimaka Petey!
Dec. 14, 2012 1:52 pm
I am fairly new to this site and decided to look at the blogs. Yours is the first I read! And just goes to show you ya learn something new everyday! I never KNEW you could use superglue! I was so surprised I had to read it aloud to my hubby. "Sure, people do it all the time." he said. Huh? Well, it's good to know. Hopefully I won't ever need it but good to know! And I hear ya about the medical bills, grrrrr! Thanks!
Dec. 14, 2012 7:25 pm
Well, Petey, as always, I was out there with you through your wonderful words. I gasped when your fingernails were broken. My husband asked what was wrong... like I said, I was right there with you. Each "installment" is a wonderful adventure and I truly thank you for taking us along for the ride!!
Dec. 15, 2012 8:48 am
Thanks "y'all". The finger is healing nicely and unbeknownst to Randyman I cut a hole in the fence and made a sheepie 'dog door'. Works good!
J. Dub 
Dec. 17, 2012 12:52 pm
Love your blogs...everytime! Hope your finger doesn't give you anymore problems.
Dec. 18, 2012 7:13 am
You're a riot!! Thanks for the post!!
Dec. 18, 2012 1:39 pm
You made your story make me feel like I was there watching the whole thing. Glad you weren't hurt any worse by the sheep. I have a scar on a finger from doing the same thing you did with the can also. Just a thin line scar now. Hardly noticeable. Hopefully yours will heal as nicely. I hope you and Randyman have a wonderful Christmas and New year. Charlotte B.
Dec. 18, 2012 6:44 pm
So happy to read a new post from you. Wishing you and all yours, from Randyman down to Emma, a very Happy Holidays!
Dec. 19, 2012 11:03 am
Thanks to all, and Merry Christmas!
Dec. 19, 2012 1:33 pm
roflmao - Happy Holidays.
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About Me
Kids are raised, we are ranchhands on a 250,000 acre working cattle ranch 110 miles from the nearest small town, so we raise a lot of our own food, vegetables, fruits, milk,eggs and meat. Love riding and working cattle, but find myself spending a lot more time in the kitchen, and the garden.
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Having 2 Jersey cows as well as milk goats, playing with fresh milk is a hobby, making our own butter, yogurt, sour cream, cheeses, soap and all the other great stuff you can do with fresh raw milk.
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A layered Jello dessert...the middle layer never set, so it did the 'ooze-wiggle'...and...well..I liquified a couple of chickens on 2 different occasions, turning them into a black gel. Moral of that story is, don't start cooking then go clean barns!...and there was the time that my kids were helping me make Thanksgiving dinner and SOMEbody (who resembled my youngest son) forgot to put the sugar in the pie!!!
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