Coyote Soup

Bringing life back to the family ranch with three young free range braves and lots of organic elbow grease.

A Belated Monday List October 30, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Piper Long @ 10:33 am
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1. When one gets a dog, one should always take into consideration all possible indirect expenses of caring for them.
e.g. computer cords.

I was all set to jot down my Monday list yesterday when I noticed my computer cord had been chewed almost entirely in half.

I thought I could pick up a new cord for around $20. Turns out cords are more approximately $75.

Needless to say, this was a depressing realization for me.

2. So I made butterscotch pie.
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And the world was a happier place.

3. Then my grandmother called to tell me my brother had left some knives at her house for my boys.
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Because my brother lives so far from me, we often exchange items at her house because her house is the half-way house.

Not to be confused with the halfway house.

“Your brother left some knives here for the boys,” she informed me.

“Knives?” I asked.

“Yeah. He said he told the boys that if they made straight A’s on their report cards, he’d buy them knives. And they’re really big ones too,” she said.


“Like how big? Like machete big? Or Samurai big?” I inquired.

“I dunno, but I do know they’re bigger than a switch blade knife,” she said, “and they’ve got a lifetime warranty.”


That’s all my kids need. Weapons that will last them a lifetime.

“Ok, I’ll be by later to pick them up,” I replied.

4. Speaking of knives, we finally carved our Halloween jack-o-lanterns over the weekend.

We, meaning me.

My children were not allowed to operate the carving knife.

5. However, I did allow my 5-year-old to operate my car.

6. My boys started wrestling yesterday.

Being a wrestler requires special shoes, and because my boys waited until the last-minute to inform me of the need for the shoes until the day of practice, I was forced to buy them while they were at school.

Which means they wouldn’t be able to try them on.

Fortunately, my 9-year-old and I wear the same size shoe.

So there I was in the store with my purse slung across my shoulder, trying on wrestling shoes .

Apparently, this is typical because none of the salesmen said a word.

7. Getting to the bus stop early to pick up your kids can make for a boring wait.
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Unless your brother happens to get your young children dangerously large big game hunting knives in which case your time can be well spent splicing computer cords that have been chewed by dogs.

8. Last night, the sunset was amazing.
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9. Utterly amazing.

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10. Not to be confused with udderly amazing.


The Family Barber October 28, 2011

Filed under: Family — Piper Long @ 1:42 pm
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My 4-year-old has decided that he is going to grow a beard.

He informed me of this fact during his most recent haircut. I was meticulously snipping my way through his precious blonde mane, careful to leave the top a little longer for styling, when I noticed him duck out of the way as I took aim at his sideburns.

“No, Momma!” he protested.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“I want to grow a beard! Don’t cut it off!” he scolded.

“Oh,” I replied. “Ok, then I guess you’re all done!”

And with that my little tow head hopped down and trotted off to the bathroom to admire the progress of his beard.

Giving haircuts to my guys over the years has been challenging, rewarding, frightening, haunting and hilarious.

It all started when my husband, who worked from sun up to sun down as a farmer/fireman/rancher/oil producer, found it increasingly more difficult to squeeze in a haircut during his busy days. And when he came to me, desperate, drained and doomed to dreadlocks, I figured any haircut was better than no haircut.

So I bought some clippers and started cutting. For the next few months, my husband really took to his cowboy hat.
And after a long hunting trip in the mountains, he came home looking like Robert Redford in Jeremiah Johnson. I couldn’t decide if I was more excited to see him or some hair on his head!

From that point on, the scruff of his beard remained, and my haircutting skills improved.

And now, as long as I can get my three little braves to hold still long enough, I can usually get a decent cut and even admit to being their barber.

Although sometimes it means trimming their sideburns in their sleep.

I am the official family barber.

And I work from son up to son down. And sometimes after that.


The Longhorn October 14, 2011

Filed under: ranching — Piper Long @ 9:03 am
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We have one longhorn on the ranch and she happens to be one of the only ones I can consistently identify. We’ve had her for quite some time now and she has won our hearts. Because of this, she has also been given eternal immunity in any and all eliminations.

Speaking of immunity, I’m not sure she has ever been immunized.

In fact, she rarely comes near the corral.

And she has taught her offspring to do the same. That’s her daughter and nursing granddaughter there on the right.

The Hereford-looking cow off to herself is one of her granddaughters.

But her Hereford-looks are just that. Looks. I don’t think there are any Herefords in her family tree. And who would guess her grandmother was a longhorn?

What I find so interesting is that they usually stay together. I will see them in pastures off to themselves having lunch together. They go to water together. They chew cud together. And they sit back and watch as we herd the rest of the herd into the corral… together.

I love a close-knit family.


Flat on Bachelor’s Flat June 28, 2011

Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to live without my cellphone.

I would like to think I would be more attentive to the moment…
Less likely to get brain cancer…
Perhaps I would no longer perform periodically frantic searches for it when I find it’s not presently in my grasp or attached to my ear…
I could do whatever I wanted without answering to anyone as to my whereabouts.

Then I have days like today when it would be nice if someone knew my whereabouts.

Preferably someone who knows how to change a flat tire…. because today when I was on my way home from the store, groceries in tow, a rock viciously slashed my tire causing it to deflate right smack dab in the middle of nowhere. More exactly 4 hilly, windy unpaved miles from my home in one direction and 4 hilly, windy unpaved miles from the nearest neighbor in the opposite direction. The sun was of course situated at its peak. And my children had just devoured the last of my Mocha Carmel Frappe.

Can you guess how many times this has happened to me?

Not only was this my first flat, but this was my first flat on the vehicle I just recently purchased less than a month ago. Thankfully, my children were smart enough to find the secret passageway to the jack. Meanwhile, I was under the dusty car trying to detach the spare I’d never had to use.

By now the boys were devouring the groceries and I was really starting to get concerned. The spare was stuck. I was able to lower it a few inches, but I couldn’t get it to drop. The manual was no help, there was obviously something wrong with the release.

We grabbed a few things and started walking toward home. Shortly thereafter, we came upon a clearing to a nearby pasture. That’s when I noticed an oil truck pumping oil out of the pasture’s tank battery.


When we arrived at the tank battery, I knocked on the door to the diesel powered truck. Startled by the presence of a woman and three children with no vehicle in sight, the man immediately offered us cold water.

Do you have any Frappes?

“No, thank you…” I replied, “…do you uh… do you happen to have a cell phone I could borrow?”

Trying to contain my excitement to be reunited with modern technology, I then proceeded to carefully dial the number to the man who rescues me time after time.


Little Cowboy in Deep Thought March 16, 2011

Filed under: Country Life,Family,Uncategorized — Piper Long @ 12:28 pm
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I LOVE this picture. It’s not posed. It’s not set up. It isn’t staged. It’s real.

I’m not sure what my little cowboy is contemplating at this particular moment.

But he’s definitely got something on his mind.

And while I’m not sure what this little fellow is thinking, I know exactly what I’m thinking.

1. I love this little cowboy.

2. Somebody needs to clean the rear-view mirror.


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