A History in Photos 18 (FGK 175)

The feedlot at Marshall’s
More cows!
I wasn’t sure if the John Grandma referred to here is Dad. If it was and if she wrote “John ‘helping’ at branding” with the air quotes – I’d just like to say – nice shade Grandma. Perhaps they are just ink spots, it’s another John, and I don’t see my dad in this photo at all.
This photo has Dad in it. He didn’t help with this sort of thing much – between being not a rancher and having allergies to all things ranching (animals, smoke, hay..) he could only do this in small doses. Anyway….. Branding calves June/71. Bob Copithorne in foreground. John Ramsay (Glasses on) holding calf to be branded.
Ken Eklund
Lorraine and Marlene Eklund. Daughters of Ken and Delores Eklund.
Lorraine Eklund 63-64

Geese in the sunset

I went out for a walk this evening that turned into a bonus happiness moment. I love where I live. Tonight I felt such peace and bliss as I walked my road with my dog. I feel more secure and stable with every step I make. We are walking  into a fantastic new life. 

A sure sign of spring. Calves in the yard.   

 Cows on the hill 


Geese flying into the sunset  
This one is from last night but it was much the same tonight. God’s beauty reflected in our world. 




Every year out at the ranch  they have community brandings. As a kid I remember looking forward to them for many reasons – the baking and getting the afternoon off of school ranking high among them. Now I look forward to it as a way to spend some time visiting with  family in the community. As the years have gone by, I am no longer as excited to get right on there and wrestle the calves – in fact today I took a great deal of time selecting my outfit  which included completely unpractical sandals so that I would be able to remain on the outside. 

Jacob and Jenna however were right in there. The last time we were at a branding was when I was pregnant with Jenna and Jacob was almost 3. I was commenting to someone that it was Jacob’s first time and as soon as the words were out of my mouth men were called into give them a hand and explain how things were done. 


They got it. 


Help was always close by, but they did their job. 


Jenna’s job was to mark the calves after they’d had their shots. 


It’s a pretty special family experience and a part of their heritage. I was so thankful there were all these patient adults who stepped in showed them how to do things. Including the adult who called out the other adults trying to be lazy saying: don’t you be taking any more of those smaller calves. You need to save those for the kids. Come on!! Be fair man. And then a few good natured hand gestures after that. 

My happiness moment today was being back in the fold of the family, watching the kids learning the same way I had as a child. I stood with my childhood branding partner (my cousin) and we relived our memories of being in the corral trying desperately to grab a hold of a calf (and how rarely they left the small ones for the kids in those days). We had some good chuckles remembering out adventures. 

I missed having my Dad standing beside me taking pictures – I had to actually remember to take some myself. But, I think he would have been happy that we were out there with friends and family having a fun and normal day.