Monthly Archives: March 2017

A Custom Fit Hat

Back in the fall I finally decided to get a custom made felt hat. I really had no idea there are still a lot of hatters out there that build hats for you. I evidently have a pointed head because I could never get a hat off the store shelf to fit me right, I always had to try and reshape it to get it to fit and mostly had no luck. I picked Buckaroo Hats because they have a really nice looking and easy to navigate website. You really can’t tell much about a hat just by looking at pictures on the computer so it was just a guess on who to use. I wound up being really well pleased with Berry and the way the hat turned out. Be prepared to wait a while because these guys are busy and it takes a while to get one made. Here are some things to expect and look for in case you are ever in the market.

First you go through their order form and choose your colors and styles and accessories. It’s really detailed and you make all your selections right then. They also have a gallery so you can view all the different colors of ribbon and felts and things.

Then they sent me a device to get an accurate measurement of my head.

Ok, brace yourself!

I know it looks like something out of a scary movie! Not to mention my larger than life mug but I wanted you to have an idea what it looked like.

After I sent that back to them they got my felts in and started working on it. Once they had it finished he sent me a picture to make sure it was what I had in mind and then I paid the balance and they shipped it out.

Once it arrived I was surprised and impressed that it came in a hard plastic carry case!

Opening it up was like Christmas.

They also included several pages of instructions on how to care for the hat.

When I put it on it fit like it was made for me.

I was also impressed with the inside.

The leather band was soft and I really could hardly feel it on my head.
I would have preferred to be emailed now and then to tell me where I was on the list and just kept in the loop a bit more, but all in all I was very impressed with the process and the end product!

If you are in the market for a hat I’d sure get in contact with Berry and let him give you a quote on one, you won’t be disappointed.

Til next time, happy trails!


3 Steps to Start Growing Your Own Food

For those of you who are interested knowing where your food comes from and how its produced, you can raise at least some of it yourself. Following these three easy steps is a proven way to go about it.

1. Get to know someone who is doing it right.
Whether you choose chicken, pork, beef, gardening, or some combination find someone who is knowledgeable and see how they do it.
I used to haul my horse to an indoor arena to practice moving cows on him. Come to find out the owner of that arena was rally sharp about handling cattle. It didn’t matter if you were on foot or horseback, he had ways of doing things that were totally foreign to my thinking. That old man taught me more about low stress cattle handling than I could imagine and I thought I knew how to handle cattle! Turns out that even though I’d done it all my life that I didn’t really know what I was doing.

2. Make sure you have the resources.
You’ll want to have a plan about your endeavor before you start. Not only will you need to make sure you have enough money to fund it but you’ll want to be sure you have enough land and feed and time. If you are raising animals they will likely need to be cared for every day! Do you plan on being home every day, no vacation or weekends away? If not do you have a friend or helper who can step in and care for them while your gone? Do you have adequate facilities to house and protect your animals from predators or to keep them from getting out and endangering themselves? Take time plan it all out and you’ll set yourself up for success!

3. Buy your animals or plants from a quality supplier.
This is probably the most important step and it’s often overlooked. Say you’ve decided to buy a calf and feed it out so you can have your own beef. If you go to your local sale barn you are likely buying everything that calf has come in contact with from the auction. The calf may have been healthy when you bought him but was exposed to all kinds of sickness and viruses while he was at the yard. That is a recipe for disaster! Instead find a local cattleman in your area and buy a calf right off their farm. If you don’t have a trailer they will probably deliver it for you and the animal will likely remain healthy. Even with plants for your garden you’ll need to find a quality greenhouse and it will make a world of difference when its time to harvest.

Remember a little extra work going in to your project will really set you up for success and pay off greatly in the end. I hope this helps you and as always if you have a question contact me, I’d be happy to help.


Memory Table

Have you ever had an animal that that you were extremely close to? A horse or a pet of some kind? If so chances are that you have lost one as well. I bought a horse over 20 years ago that really wasn’t much to look at but he was small and had a kind eye and I thought he would be good for my son to learn to ride on. It turns out he was a great horse! Not only did my son learn to ride on him but the whole family and nieces and nephews all had some time with this horse. His name was Dave although I can’t remember if that was his name when we got him or if we named him? You could gather cattle on Dave and sort them. You could ride trails and cross deep water. You could pack on him and he would stay put when you hobbled him. When the kids would ride him every now and then the saddle would get loose or they would be half asleep and start to lean to one side, Dave would walk his hind end over to get back underneath the saddle and keep the kid from falling.

After having the privilege to have Dave in our family for a number of years we lost him a while back. We weren’t certain exactly how old he was but somewhere around 25 which is a long life for a horse. This was really emotional for all of us and I wanted to do something to remember him by. You know how it is when you see someone after you know they have lost something close like Dave. It’s awkward, you are not sure if you should say anything or not. If you decide not to, then you always wonder if you should have? If you decide to your not sure exactly what to say?

I decided to build a table that is dedicated to Dave. I put a picture of him on it that is under the finish so it is a permanent part of the table. I used solid oak hardwood and made it old style with no nails or screws. It’s built like he was, not real fancy but solid and true. It turned out really nice.



The best thing about it is when someone comes over its a great conversation starter, even if they didn’t know Dave when they see the table its likely to spark a comment or a question and I get to share my story with them. If they did know him it will bring back a memory that they have and I might not even have known about which is really cool.