Grandchildren at the County Stock Show
Friday, January 15, 2016
I was writing about this tonight on one of my team message boards, but the story ended up so long that I decided I'd just copy and paste and make a blog out of it. It's been over a year since I've posted a blog, anyway, so I guess it's about time.
The question I was answering was "What made you feel happy today?" So here's what I wrote, and I will go back and make a shorter answer on that team page. I don't know how I manage to get so wordy sometimes -- except that when I'm writing about my grandchildren I get a bit carried away. So here's a warning. Just stop here if you don't like to read about grandmothers who brag. I am officially one of those grandmothers.
What Made You Feel Happy Today?
Not that I wasn't happy again today, but I'm going back to yesterday because that's when this took place. I've got to brag on three (of my five) grandkids who raise pigs for several months during the year.
Yesterday was the annual county livestock show that they look forward to the whole year, knowing that they'll get to show their animals and possibly earn scholarship money for college. One of their pigs suddenly dropped dead about two weeks ago (I never did get the answer why), but they still had four animals entered in the contests.
Twelve-year-old 7th-grader Claire showed her medium weight Duroc first yesterday morning. Didn't make the cut, so she was out of the ring in about 30 seconds or less. That's always a disappointment when they're in and out so fast, but that's the way it goes sometimes.
A bit later was nine-year-old 4th-grader Luke's first time ever to be eligible to show. His heavy weight OPB (other pure bred) got 8th place, assuring that he could take his animal to the auction and sell it to the highest bidder. Way to go, Lukie!
Claire was up again that afternoon with her medium weight Yorkshire, and the judge wasn't impressed. He didn't spend any time looking at that one either. (Nothing against the judge; it just wasn't a quality animal.) No chance to sell at auction since it didn't place; it will just bring market prices that don't near cover the cost of the show animal.
My oldest granddaughter Brooke (age 15, a sophomore in high school) showed later with her heavy weight Crossbreed and came in 5th place with it, so she can take it to the big auction on Saturday, too. WooHoo!
Then Miss Claire's name was called to be in the Showmanship contest, one of 20 kids selected from out of the over-300 plus kids who showed hogs yesterday. I was really happy for her, especially since her two hogs were eliminated so quickly. She stuck with the competition to the very end and came in 2nd place. I got tickled because she said all she got was a red ribbon and the boy who won got a silver belt buckle -- and that she r-e-a-l-l-y wanted the silver buckle!
After that excitement, Brooke showed her breeding hog yesterday evening, and it came in 6th place in the show. She purchased this animal with money that she won last year in the San Antonio Livestock Show calf scramble. She's been corresponding with the sponsors all year and has been sending them almost weekly reports ever since she brought her animal home. She'll be taking that one to the San Antonio Livestock Show in February.
Brooke also competed in the FFA Skillathon for Swine, which is "a knowledge based competition designed to enhance the educational experience of exhibiting." She found out last night that she placed 3rd overall. Nice!
I've been sick with a sore throat and cough all week, so I didn't get to go down to the arena to watch them myself this year. Luckily, my daughter sent me text messages throughout the day, beginning before 7 a.m. until the last scores at 8:35 p.m. I was, of course, with phone in hand, anxiously awaiting the rankings the whole day. And I'm sure it was a very long, tiring day for those kids, too.
So there you have the long story of what should have been a short answer to the question, "What made you feel happy today?" I'm happy that my grandchildren had an excellent day yesterday. That makes their Nonna Lou very proud of all three of them!