Spring work on the ranch is nearly done. These little guys have worked their tails off, so it's time for some fun. We have had our few big brandings and helped the neighbors with theirs. There were only 15 or so calves left to be done, so we made a party out of it.
Rylee was strategic help in rounding up and sorting off. I thought she deserved an old-timey cowboy picture for being so dang punchy. Auntie Tayler is riding Outlaw, Seth is on Johnny Boy, and Ry is riding the sweetest tempered horse I've ever seen, Hiedi.
Before we could get started, the corral needed some tidying up to make room for the ropers.
Then Rylee thought she'd just head out and rope one of the babies. She was after the white one, but he proved pretty wily. I don't know what she would have done had she actually got the loop around it.
Tayler invited her friend Taylor, and 2T's make an excellent ground crew.
The best part of this branding are our first two ropers, roping for the first time. Dax hopped on Rainbow, his favorite horse, and drug a baby calf to the fire. He has been looking forward to this ever since he got his special blue rope for Christmas, and practicing on rocking horses and a little brother.
What big brother does little brother does too, only with his special yellow rope. Seth roped the calves a foot then tied off to their tiny saddle horn. Peyton is probably the most cowboy of all our kids, only wearing wranglers and boots, wanting to go to work every day, and never taking off his hat. He has a natural seat on a horse and even though his feet don't quite reach the stirrups knows how to ride. It took us all morning to brand these few calves, we were busy teaching Rylee how to give a shot the right way, Dax how to kneel on a calf, and trying to keep Peyton out from under the horses. This little crew of mine has got to be one of the best ever.