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A new calf brought in from the cold to find warmth.

Drifts and blowing snow by the machine shed.

The sun finally came out to begin to melt some of the snow around our house.
I can watch the calves from my kitchen window.
The new red angus bulls are trying to warm themselves in the sun.
The cows are being fed at their bunks ten miles east of WaKeeney.
The new calves at the
home pasture.
Cows at the bunks feeding ten miles east of WaKeeney.

Hixson Diaries

March 8, 1998

The wind came up late yesterday afternoon and the snow increased so we woke up to a raging blizzard. Larry and I went out early to see if we needed to rescue any new calves. We did find a couple that needed to be warmed. One we took to the garage and warmed. It is doing fine. The other was several days old so Larry put him in a barn, but I think he had been stepped on and injured. He did not survive. When a storm hits, the cows all crowd next to the windbreak and often a calf gets down and can't get up. Another very new calf died yesterday in the snow--just too cold. We hope that is all the calves we lose to this storm. We still haven't been able to see all the cows and calves. The roads going east were closed all day. Larry took a big tractor with a blade on it and to open the roads but the wind blew snow in his tracks about as fast as he made them. We did have sunshine this afternoon but the wind is still blowing. We hope everything can begin to get back to normal tomorrow.

March 9, 1998

What a snowstorm we had Saturday and Sunday. Today we finally could get everywhere to check and feed cattle. The storm resulted in three calves dying and one bull. The calves we can understand but the bull is a little surprising. He just didn't get in a sheltered place--and shelter was available to him. This has been a very cold blizzard.

March 10, 1998

It is still bitterly cold. Larry and Milo fed cattle all day. I worked on books then in the afternoon I drove to Topeka to attend a meeting of the Kansas Hospital Association. I am a new board member so went early to attend an orientation at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow. I left about 4 p.m.--and the temperature was at about 24 degrees.

March 11, 1998

It was another cold night. O to 5 degrees was predicted for the low temperature. I spent the day at the KHA meeting in Topeka. The meeting was over at 2:30 and everyone was anxious to head home because of the cold weather. Topeka received another 2 inches of snow last night. Larry spent the morning feeding and checking for new calves. In the afternoon he went to Ness City for parts for the planter. He has Joe rebuilding the planter so we will be ready to plant corn in April.

March 12, 1998

We are still in our cold weather pattern. Larry left early to be in Salina by 8:30 to attend a meeting with KCIA concerning white wheat. The world market seems to be very interested in white wheat for its milling quality and its noodle making quality. He arrived home around 4 p.m. and spent the rest of the day working in the office.

March 13, 1998

Finally a beautiful day. The temperature reached in the low 60's. That is quite a change from the past few days. I feel like all I have written about this week is the weather--but it has a very strong impact on our lives--especially when we are having calves. Lots of snow melted today. Larry spent all morning feeding and taking care of the cattle east of town. He has a calf he is bottle-feeding. It came backwards and hasn't been able to stand. Yesterday Milo but splints on its back legs so it could stand. It is doing better but still can't suck enough to nurse the cow.

The snow in the drifts is starting to melt and in the process is so heavy that it pulled the wires in the fences to the ground and breaks them. Larry started to fix fences today.

March 14, 1998

Larry finally got the calf to suck a bottle today. Maybe there is hope for it yet.

We had an interesting afternoon. A group of promotion people from Hyundai accepted a challenge from David Letterman to have fun driving a Hyundai from Missoula Montana to Manhattan New York. They picked WaKeeney, the Christmas City of the High Plains, as a place to stop and have lunch. Santa in a sleigh greeted them, a local group sang Christmas Carols, and everyone enjoyed a good time for about 45-minutes. Then they came to our house to eat lunch. I used my Christmas china and my friends made them a German meal for their lunch. They had a good time and appreciated a good home cooked meal. We hope they left with good feelings for WaKeeney and if we are lucky we will get mentioned on the Letterman Show.


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