What’s it like to be a mother and a ranch wife? It’s not so different than moms everywhere. Kim Brackett recently blogged about her life: “Chauffeur. That is my most recent job title. I have been shuttling kids back and forth nearly every day this month. Guitar lessons, karate lessons, hair cuts, and my near weekly trip to pick up my son’s glasses from being repaired. Ten year old boys + eye glasses + recess = many broken frames!”
Of course suburban moms don’t have to help with spring calving and very few urban moms can saddle up a few horses and go out riding with the kids. Making sure the cattle are fed, doing preg-checks, warming up a nearly frozen calf born in the middle of the night – in the middle of an Idaho winter - are a few other chores unique to ranch wives.
“So there I was,” she blogged, showing her ranch wife side again, “folding laundry and deciding what to cook for dinner when my daughter popped her head around the corner asking permission to go outside. She informed me she planned to take her little brother on a field trip.”
Chantry is that adventurous 5-year-old daughter who wanted to show 3-year-old Rhett the world that was just outside the front porch. Kim chases after two more boys when they’re home from school; Cade, who’s 10 and 8 year old Zane.
Why did Chantry want to go on that field trip? Kim’s blog gave the answer: “After several moments spent hiking through the field, I finally spied what I thought might be the eventual destination of our little outing. The horses. More specifically, this horse. Her horse. Mack.”
Brackett’s blog is called Beef Matters and she’s one of the Cattleman’s Beef Board's active agvocates, reaching thousands of people through social media. She has 1,200 Facebook friends and 2,500 more regularly check out her blog, making for a lot of people who are developing a better understanding of ranch life and the cattle business.
“This is a family ranch,” she told me. “It was originally owned by my husband’s family. It’s a cow/calf operation and we have about 2,000 stockers.” The ranch is about two hours southeast of Boise State University where she earned her MBA.
“I grew up on a cow/calf operation in Wyoming,” she said, “and met my husband Ira at Utah State.” She was working on a political science degree with a minor in animal science. Ira was an animal science major.