Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Hereford Jr National

We survived the Hereford Jr National.  Thank Goodness that is behind us.  I'm all about supporting Jay because this is something that's important to him, but I'm glad I've been off all summer.  If that had been my "vacation" like it was originally going to be I would've been sorely disappointed.  Spending an entire week trapped in a cattle barn is just not my idea of a good time.  Actually I'm quite happy that I had a 9 pound excuse to keep me from being in the barns so much.  It probably worked out even better that we had Camryn.  I feel awkward when we are at these shows.  So many of the other Mom's are doing things....I don't know what to do and quite honestly I'm not that interested in learning.  But then I feel useless because Jay is doing all the work and I'm not doing anything.  I'm just glad I was pushing a stroller and had a great excuse.  I should be able to use her for the next 5-6 years. We were stalled by one mom who told me she grew up on a farm but didn't do anything with showing cattle.  She went on to tell me how she knows nothing about showing.  For a brief second I thought I had a kindred spirit.  Then she went on to tell me how when it was in Tulsa a couple of years ago her husband couldn't go so she loaded up her 7 yr old and 5 yr old and went with one heifer.  She had to wash it every day and and dry it all while keeping an eye on her two kids.  I can't tell you how nervous that would've made me....I must be weak.

I also think Jay realized some things while we were gone.  But in case he forgets I've made some mental post-its to remind him the next time we go back.  I'm afraid the Hereford Jr National may to be Jay like childbirth is to women....you quickly forget the pain you just endured.  I'll be there with my list in case Jay starts to suffer from HJN amnesia

Only 1head of cattle to capable bovine handler.  Three cows to one adult is way way way too much.  I think everyone else had more of a 1 to 1 ratio.  Thank goodness for a family from Miller stalled across the aisle from us.  They were 2 adults and 2 HS age girls to 4 head of cattle.  They saved Jay quite a bit of work.

Never register a heifer that is the oldest that you can possibly show at the HJN.  That means you will be in the absolute last class showing.  Out of 164 classes you will be in the last one.  Which means a long long day for every one. 

We don't plan on going unless it is within a certain radius of home.  I don't have any plans to travel 2 states  over  (or more) for this thing.  There are people who came from California and New England with cattle.  They must be insane.  Or they weren't lucky enough to have a wife making mental notes for them.

I think we made it ok during the week.  Probably the worst time was trying to decide where to eat dinner every night.  At the Royal there just aren't a lot of choices and then it was hard trying to get the timing down.  The heifers had to be fed and watered before tie outs, but they weren't taking them to tie-outs until it cooled down.  If we left to eat dinner around 6 then it put Jay behind on the feeding and watering thing.  Then not to mention we were all tired and hot.  Some of those car rides to eat were not some of the most pleasant in our family history. 

So all in all it was a good experience for us....I know this is all good for Cade...but I don't plan on making this a yearly thing.  I also think family vacations where you actually see something new is a good experience (and thankfully Jay also agrees).  I don't think I have to worry about this becoming our "vacation" every year.  But just in case it starts to I have my mental notes....and if that fails Camryn and I will just hop a plane and take a vacation of our own.  The only problem with that is I'm not sure Jay and Cade would survive a week at the HJN without bloodshed....and I'm really not sure which one would come out the survivor.  They had a kids play area where there were some pillows stacked up and a TV playing movies.  It was a good place for the kids to veg out for awhile.  I walked over to the area and got Cade's attention so I could tell him something.  He got up and another kid took his place on the pillow.  This was Friday and Cade was done.  I couldn't hear what was said between Cade and the pillow stealer, but I could tell Cade was letting this kid know he was coming right back and that kid was not to take his spot.  I didn't feel like breaking up a fight so I told Cade to lay back down and I just yelled to him what I needed to tell him.  Cade and I are so much alike....very mild mannered.  But when we've been pushed to the point of where words are being exchanged we've been pushed to our limit.  Yes, the HJN brought out the best in all of us!

Camryn sporting her JCS Cattle Company attire, complete with Hereford Bull
But she was not pleased about being photographed with her brother in a matching shirt.

Cade snuck in a picture of Jay on my phone when no one was looking.  This was just the first day and Jay was already beat.  This was after driving to KC, unloading everything pretty much by himself, and getting Cade ready to give his speech.  It had been a long day already.

This was the Missouri Jr Marketing Team.  They did really good.  They didn't place at HJN, but at the the Gold Buckle for Ozark Empire they won 1st place.  Cade has a line that cracks me up in the presentation.  They marketed his heifer named Jewels.  His last line was Jewels will make a gem in your herd.  You should see him deliver it. 

This is Cade with Jewels.  Funny story that just happened....I asked Cade to tell me who was in this picture, meaning what cow.  I can't tell them apart.  He put his head right next to the screen and paused for a second.  Then he turned around and said "It's me". 

Why we never want to be in the last class again

And this is how we all felt by the time we got home

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is just the beginning of Jr. Nationals. We went to our 1st one in 2004 and have been every year since. Furthest was 16 hours away. The kids won't let us skip and it is their vacation of choice (much to my dismay). Gelbvieh Jr Nationals are probably a little more fun though b/c we know everyone and it is in a different state every year. A lot smaller breed. Usually only 300-400 head of cattle AND they serve us all our meals. I don't like the barn much either. Good Luck. Janella