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Dave: [00:00:01] Welcome back to Making It Work in Montana. My name is David Boye, and I’m here today with Jenna Gilliland.
Jenna: [00:00:08] Hi, Dave. Hi, everyone.
Dave: [00:00:10] And making it work in Montana is about whatever I think is interesting about making it work in Montana. Indeed, we’re up to about 20 episodes now, and this episode is great because it just came to me naturally. But Jenna was featured on our Black Diamond Mortgage videos about homeownership stories, and she offhandedly mentioned something in her story about the property that she had bought that I said, This is a whole show in and of itself. So Jenna and her husband have bought a property in Flathead Valley, Montana, and it came with a gift that they weren’t expecting. And so that’s what we want to talk about today. I want you to think about the movie we bought a zoo from a few years back that I’ve seen. It’s a funny movie about a family that tries to run a zoo and they buy one. And so anyway, Jenna, tell me a little bit about your recent home purchase. You bought a property in Montana. What happen?
Jenna: [00:01:15] Okay. Well, so when we went to look at the house, Dave, we saw that they had chickens, geese, rams and ewes. Okay, tons, like several. And we were presented with the opportunity to adopt some of the Rams. So the gentleman had said, okay, we’ve sold off. My wife has already sold off the used. Do you want any chickens or rams? Well, my husband was like, no chickens. Right.
Dave: [00:01:45] Can I interrupt you real quick? I’m a total livestock rookie. I know nothing. What’s a U?
Jenna: [00:01:52] A U is like a female sheep.
Speaker3: [00:01:54] Okay. A female sheep. Thank you. Yeah.
Jenna: [00:01:57] So the Rams are the males with a bagel.
Speaker3: [00:02:00] Great.
Dave: [00:02:01] Okay, but they’re not coming with the property. And the Rams are? Yes.
Jenna: [00:02:05] So my husband says absolutely no to the chickens, which to me, it’s like they seemed a little bit easier. But nevertheless, he said, okay, we can keep a couple rams if I can have a kitten because they also had kittens.
Dave: [00:02:20] So part of the real estate negotiation is the bartering of the animals. Yes.
Speaker3: [00:02:25] Wow.
Jenna: [00:02:26] So. So we ended up with three rams and a kitten.
Dave: [00:02:30] Just so you know, on the lending side, we don’t consider any value to the animals on the property.
Speaker3: [00:02:36] No. Did but you guys did because you were bartering. We did.
Jenna: [00:02:41] Okay. I was pumped. They actually it was kind of like, hey, we’ll throw a couple in if you want some. And that was my goal, like I wanted to have I do want we are working towards having livestock. So I thought, why not start with three rams? You know.
Speaker3: [00:02:56] It’s something.
Dave: [00:02:57] I would never think of. So I can imagine being so prior to this, had you guys been livestock people or had you owned property with animals? No. Okay. So as a family, you guys are buying this property and one of the goals is to start to experience this. And then just the curveball is and there’s a there’s rams on the property, correct? Okay. Yep. And so when you do buy a property with livestock goals and objectives, just to maybe give us a vision of this property, like how big is the property? What do you think? How much livestock can you keep on the property?
Jenna: [00:03:36] So we have about just over five acres, okay. The front pastures are already all fenced in because they had the Rams. We have a shop and kind of a back barn area with stalls and everything, a big chicken coop, chicken run. And then the neighboring property, actually, this this older gentleman who’s just the best ever. He also has about 5 or 6 acres. And he has said because he loves our family and the kids, that we could also use his back pastures. So.
Speaker3: [00:04:08] Okay, great. So if you guys.
Dave: [00:04:09] Get into it, you have a little support with extra property.
Speaker3: [00:04:12] Yeah.
Jenna: [00:04:13] So our goal so my love is cows. So highland cows, we’re on some waiting lists for some miniature highland cows.
Dave: [00:04:23] So highland cow, just a small diversion here. But how does it differ from another kind of cow?
Jenna: [00:04:29] Well, the Highlands are the ones with the bagel.
Speaker3: [00:04:32] Oh, okay. I’ve seen these.
Jenna: [00:04:33] Yeah, they’re. They’re hairier.
Speaker3: [00:04:37] Yeah, Yeah, I’ve seen these. Okay, so.
Jenna: [00:04:39] We’re not, like, looking to have, like, we couldn’t necessarily have, like, a huge, you know, farm. We don’t have a ton of, of room, but I’d like to have eventually, you know, a highland milking cow some goats. I did not ever think I’d have rams.
Speaker3: [00:04:57] Now.
Dave: [00:04:58] Without the consideration of raising Rams. Is there any other RAM connection in your life prior to the property? Like, did you think Rams were cool or.
Jenna: [00:05:08] I honestly had no. I didn’t even know about them. Okay. I had no.
Speaker3: [00:05:13] Clue.
Dave: [00:05:14] Do you know at this point, because I know you’ve now acquired the Rams and you guys have done basically a winter with Rams where maybe we’re not done with winter yet. This is March of 2023. I know. So it feels like maybe winter’s over, but it’s probably not. So is tell me if you know. If you don’t say I don’t know. Is a bighorn sheep and a ram? Like, what’s the difference?
Speaker3: [00:05:41] I have no clue.
Dave: [00:05:41] I don’t either. But I see I do a lot of mountain climbing. I feel like I should. So when you. So just to be clear, she mentioned in the home ownership video Jenna did that there’s rams and immediately I’m like, who has rams on their property because all I’m thinking of is I climb mountains and I love climbing mountains. And one of the highlights is occasionally, not very often I will be up high in the mountains and I will come across Rams or Bighorn sheep and I actually don’t really know the difference, but I know the look of the ram horn and so I’ll see them and I’m like, Wow, that’s special. And then not at all thinking that I would have these on my property back when I get home, you know?
Speaker3: [00:06:21] I know.
Dave: [00:06:22] So that’s my I just know that they’re cool and I see them in really rugged terrain and the high country. And then I’m like, wow, people raise brands. Like, never heard of it. I’m 50. I hadn’t heard of it until you mentioned it.
Jenna: [00:06:36] Well, I hadn’t either. Okay. So and these are called Barbados Blackbelly. So they actually aren’t ones that you have to like shear or anything like that. They’re kind of interesting. I had asked the previous owner like, okay, so what do you do with them? Like, you know, so they actually had had gotten them, I think with the goal to eat them because they’re lean meat. However, he said they were great pets and the neighbors like them and they keep all the front pastures, you know, chewed down, obviously. So like you got your own.
Speaker3: [00:07:11] So there’s a little utility.
Dave: [00:07:12] Yeah.
Speaker3: [00:07:13] Okay.
Jenna: [00:07:13] There. And honestly, Dave, I will say they’re actually pretty cool. I think I share this with you a little bit, but I think it’s worth noting that. So you get all excited, right? You’re like, I’m moving into this property, my dream property. I already have livestock, right? That’s the goal. But now I already have some rams. And then you get there, you move in and you’re like, Now what? Like, what do I do with them? And it’s interesting because I equate this to it’s kind of interesting. I equate it to like, you know, you marry someone that has kids and you already have like new children that you don’t know anything about. Like, I didn’t raise them. I don’t know their temperament. Right? And they have those big old horns. So they’re kind of scary. You look at them and you’re like, okay, if I come in here to change their water, like, are they? What do I do? Like, I don’t know. They don’t know me. Should I just don’t turn your back on them Like, okay, you know, it’s kind of an interesting thing.
Speaker3: [00:08:07] So let’s just.
Dave: [00:08:08] Hit that. So are they are they kind nice animals or do they have an attitude like what are these rams like on the property?
Jenna: [00:08:16] So I would say initially. They were just as skeptical of us as I was of them, because I.
Dave: [00:08:22] Will clarify, my wife has recently got into horses and I have two horses and we are like you and the Ram Arena in that we are learning everything. Yes. So I’ve just now come to learn that when the horses are in these they call them paddocks, but you have a bunch of horses and you don’t they don’t get their own piece of property. So they have to learn to get along together. And there’s all these dynamics. Are the Rams like that or how are they on the property?
Jenna: [00:08:49] So they have their they have the whole front pasture and they just kind of live their best life out there. I mean, they’re they get along sometimes they ram each other. There’s definitely a dominant one I call him.
Speaker3: [00:09:01] So the.
Dave: [00:09:02] The ramming each other. So is that playing around or is that them letting the other one know I’m the boss? Yeah.
Jenna: [00:09:10] Asserting dominance.
Speaker3: [00:09:10] For sure. Okay.
Dave: [00:09:11] So even though they’re in a domestic setting, they still do that.
Jenna: [00:09:15] Yes.
Speaker3: [00:09:16] I mean, is.
Dave: [00:09:17] It cool to watch.
Speaker3: [00:09:18] Or. Yeah, they’re.
Jenna: [00:09:19] Cool. I mean, the noise, you’re like, holy crap. Like, that’s that’s like they have huge horns and they.
Speaker3: [00:09:25] It’s and they just.
Dave: [00:09:26] Bang horns against each other. You have this going on at your house.
Speaker3: [00:09:30] Not like.
Jenna: [00:09:30] Yes I do. And they’ll or they’ll ram the side of each other, you know, like it’s like.
Speaker3: [00:09:36] Preparation for the.
Dave: [00:09:37] Kids becoming teenagers. Yes.
Speaker3: [00:09:39] Okay. Because you’re a kid.
Dave: [00:09:41] Your oldest is nine right now.
Jenna: [00:09:42] Yes, my oldest is nine.
Speaker3: [00:09:44] So.
Dave: [00:09:44] So now watching the Rams.
Jenna: [00:09:46] Yeah. This is like the story of my life, actually. My two my two boys are like that. I’m like, here we go. But it’s interesting. I mean, they’re they’re kind of cool at first. I feel like they were leery of us. All right? They kind of look at you. Their eyes are far apart and they look at you through the side of their eye. They have these big yellow eyes.
Speaker3: [00:10:03] So they.
Dave: [00:10:03] Look kind of.
Speaker3: [00:10:04] Out to the side. Okay.
Jenna: [00:10:06] And I think my husband’s I think that’s a. Pray thing, you know, and you’re praying like you have to. I don’t know. Be looking every which way. But anyways, so they’re they’re interesting. But I feel like as the months have gone by, you kind of start to know each other like and so they now when I get home or first thing in the morning before I leave, they start to talk to me. You know, they do their ram noises and.
Speaker3: [00:10:35] Like now you’re they want you to meet them.
Dave: [00:10:37] Can you give me a ram noise?
Jenna: [00:10:39] I think I probably could.
Speaker3: [00:10:43] It might be more. Doesn’t so much might be too.
Dave: [00:10:45] Intimidating on a podcast, but I have no idea what a ram noise is other than it.
Speaker3: [00:10:50] Sounds like a goat. No. All kind of like. Kind of like a like a. Okay. Yes. Yes, yes, yes.
Jenna: [00:10:56] So now.
Speaker3: [00:10:57] So they make a noise like that. They do that. And what.
Dave: [00:11:00] Are they conveying when they make that.
Speaker3: [00:11:03] Noise? I mean, I.
Jenna: [00:11:04] Think they’re like, Mom, come feed.
Speaker3: [00:11:05] Me. They want some attention. Yeah, they want attention.
Jenna: [00:11:07] So I go over there and I feed him and yeah, but we didn’t start like that. Dave Like, literally we at first, they look at me, look at them. They didn’t know me, I didn’t know them. You know, we had to kind of get acclimated.
Dave: [00:11:17] So they now recognize you as their provider owner?
Speaker3: [00:11:22] Okay. I think they do.
Dave: [00:11:23] And did you say you have three rams?
Speaker3: [00:11:25] Okay, Dave, why did you have to bring. No, no, I’m sorry. Okay. I had three. Go ahead.
Dave: [00:11:29] And let’s just let’s just face.
Speaker3: [00:11:30] The elephant in the room, okay? We had three the ram in the room.
Jenna: [00:11:34] We now have two. Oh, unfortunately, I know. And it makes me feel like a terrible ram. Mom, thanks for bringing that up.
Dave: [00:11:41] Can you tell us what happened? Because.
Jenna: [00:11:44] Well, so one day I got home from work and they were talking. I went inside to tell my husband that I was going to go feed the Rams in a bit. And he’s like, Oh, I’ll go out and take care of it. I’m like, All right. Then he came in and he’s like, Babe, I’m like, What? He’s like, one of the Rams died. I’m like, What do you say? What do you mean? One of the Rams died? How do you know? He’s like, He’s on the ground. I’m like, okay, but like, what if he’s sleeping? He’s like, He’s not. I lifted up one.
Speaker3: [00:12:09] Of his so he.
Dave: [00:12:10] Checked to see if.
Speaker3: [00:12:11] He was checked.
Jenna: [00:12:12] Okay. He’s an E.R. nurse. Oh, wow. Not a ram doctor, but, I mean, it’s not a veterinary at this point. He he kind of knows, right? So I said, well, how I wonder. And that’s the thing. Like, you don’t really know. Like, how would you know how other than it was right after, it was like super cold again. And during the winter I have found and I’ve kind of heard you really want to feed them even more so that it can, you know, their energy is trying to keep them warm. And so you got to over not over feed them, but feed them more than you normally would. And he was the smaller of the three. And so you almost wonder like, okay, is this survival of the fittest? Like, I don’t know, He didn’t look like any predator had gotten to him, but he did have a weird spot on his side that looked I don’t know if the other one’s random when they were trying to eat, but I did ask my neighbor. I consulted my neighbor because he’s grown up on a farm and he just said, anything with a heartbeat can die. I’m like, okay, Jim.
Speaker3: [00:13:08] Well, so when you think about raising.
Dave: [00:13:10] Animals on your property, it’s like, this is part of it, part of it is the life.
Speaker3: [00:13:15] And death experience.
Jenna: [00:13:16] And actually we were talking to our kiddos about it, okay, my kids are nine, seven and three, and my husband’s like, We’re gonna have to talk to kids about this, right? So he actually asked the big kids to come help him, you know, And we just explained to them like, this is kind of the circle of life and life on a farm. I mean, every animal kind of has its purpose and its job on the farm, and we have to be mindful of that. And it’s hard, right? I mean, it’s sad. My little three year old is like, are you sure you didn’t go to Barb’s house? I’m like, Who’s Barb? He’s like, Remember Mom, when they they got out one time and went and visited the neighbor Barb. I forgot her name, but apparently it’s Barb. And I was like, No, buddy, he’s no longer with us. So he yeah, he kind of was like, huh. And so anyway, I told him the ram went to Ram Heaven, and he’s like, So where’s his body? I’m like, Well, currently it’s still outside. But anyways, so.
Speaker3: [00:14:06] So I have a friend.
Dave: [00:14:07] Who who does the whole thing. They, they do pigs, horses. And so with the pigs, it’s crazy because they name the pigs, they raise them and then they eat them and they actually sit at the table and they’re like, We’re eating, you know?
Speaker3: [00:14:21] Yeah, this is hungry and this is.
Dave: [00:14:23] But they’ve been the kids by the time they go from, you know, all the way to 18, they’ve seen the life cycle a couple times because with enough animals on the property, you know, like they have several horses, occasionally dad has to go out and put a horse down because something happens and it’s like with a horse there, they only they can get injured to the point where they’re not really able to survive. And and then like the other animals, you’re raising them to eat them. Right. And and so, yeah, I can appreciate just the craziness of if you’re not normally if you’re just thinking pets, then it’s a different environment. Right?
Jenna: [00:15:02] It was definitely a learning experience for us, but I think a good one for our kids because I mean, the whole point and I think I’ve shared this with you before, if I haven’t, the whole point of us. Wanting to embark on this journey is that, you know, we want our kids to grow up outside. We want them to understand the value of hard work. We want them to get up and go do their chores with the animals before we sit down to eat. I mean, that’s really a big part of it. So unfortunately, it was sad that the RAM died, but it is kind of part of the process. I think, if anything, you question okay, what could I have done different? I just became a RAM mom. So like I need to figure this out, you know, so.
Dave: [00:15:44] I we’re allowed to be you and I on this podcast are allowed to get any of the answers wrong. I just became a horse owner in the last couple of years and I say the dumbest things around people that have been raising horses their whole life. Yeah, but I do own two horses and I am in the game trying to. I’m a man in the arena, trying to figure it out.
Speaker3: [00:16:04] Yes, exactly.
Dave: [00:16:06] And I don’t even keep them on my property. So I have that little bit of buffer. So there’s like a barn and all that. But so let me ask you, so if the do you know at this point, do the Rams are there basically two categories domesticated and wild, or do people that start to bring do they get a wild ram and domesticate it? Do you know how it works?
Jenna: [00:16:32] I don’t think they take a wild and domesticated. So I think there.
Speaker3: [00:16:36] There’s just like a culture.
Dave: [00:16:37] Of rams that people keep on their property and they barter and get them.
Speaker3: [00:16:43] From what I.
Jenna: [00:16:44] Understand. And when when we catch those three, he made it seem like there were others in town that. Do this for a living. So I have not plugged into all of those areas. But yeah, I do.
Speaker3: [00:17:00] Understand Googled it because you are.
Dave: [00:17:02] Coming to do this podcast.
Speaker3: [00:17:04] That’s awesome. And I.
Dave: [00:17:05] Found other people talking about it and prior to you mentioning it.
Speaker3: [00:17:09] I lived 50 years.
Dave: [00:17:10] On this earth. I did not know Rams were domesticated on people’s property. So now that I think about it, I feel like a lot of animals have been domesticated and there’s always niche people doing niche things, but it just hadn’t occurred to me. All right. Crazy question. And you can say you don’t know or you can tell me the answer. Do you milk rams?
Speaker3: [00:17:31] I just don’t know. Because the reason I’m asking is because I have a friend who has goats. Oh, yeah.
Dave: [00:17:37] And they milk goats and they.
Speaker3: [00:17:39] So rams. They’re only males.
Jenna: [00:17:43] Oh no, there’s ewes and there’s rams, but I only have rams.
Speaker3: [00:17:46] Okay. So I have right there.
Dave: [00:17:48] So rams are the guys.
Speaker3: [00:17:50] Yes. Okay. Good to know. So yeah.
Dave: [00:17:53] I wouldn’t milk one.
Jenna: [00:17:54] That reminds me of the Meet the Fockers. Like you can milk anything with nipples like, I don’t know, we have rams. I don’t milk the Rams.
Speaker3: [00:18:01] Okay, so you’re not in it. So then I’m not in it to milk these. You’re nice.
Dave: [00:18:05] You’re not trying to get some people that when they have the goats on the property, like milk is part of the agenda.
Speaker3: [00:18:11] And I do want.
Jenna: [00:18:12] When you get a cow eventually.
Speaker3: [00:18:14] So when you get the.
Dave: [00:18:15] Cows that you’re going to get, you’ll you’ll get into the routine of milking the cows. Okay. Yes. But for the Rams, they’re they’re basically an animal that’s providing little utility on the property. Yes. Do you guys intend to eat the Rams at the end?
Speaker3: [00:18:30] I don’t think so.
Dave: [00:18:31] Will you will you have somebody that wants to eat the ram, eat it?
Speaker3: [00:18:37] I mean, maybe.
Dave: [00:18:38] Maybe. Okay. So you haven’t got that far. You haven’t got that far yet. And but from what you understand, the people that had the Rams before you got the property were thinking about eating them someday.
Speaker3: [00:18:50] Okay.
Jenna: [00:18:50] Like they legitimately purchased them with that intent because they’re a lean protein. Okay.
Speaker3: [00:18:57] Yeah.
Dave: [00:18:58] Do you have any idea what they taste like?
Jenna: [00:19:00] I have no clue, but I feel like lamb chops. People eat that all the time.
Dave: [00:19:03] Sure, that would make sense.
Speaker3: [00:19:05] Yeah.
Jenna: [00:19:05] I like. I’ve never been into lamb to eat, so honestly, like, the thought of eating them is just not a thing for me.
Dave: [00:19:11] Now, since you’re mentioning that you might try to get what are those cows you’re trying to get again?
Speaker3: [00:19:17] Highlands The.
Dave: [00:19:17] Highland cows? Yes. Will you try to co-exist them with the Rams?
Jenna: [00:19:23] So no, we’d probably have them on our pasture. Has the. It is separated, but there’s a way to go back and forth. We would keep them separate.
Dave: [00:19:32] Okay. And then are they are they likely to get into confrontations with each other or is it just easier to manage having them on separate pieces of grass or. I know what the horse is. One of the things that I didn’t think about until I got horses is they battle each other for the food.
Jenna: [00:19:52] Yeah, I just kind of wonder what that would look like. One, because I feel like typically when and I don’t know, I’m not an expert, right? I’m still figuring this out. But I think a lot of the times when you have like cows and things that are co-existing, they’ve grown up together. These rams like that has been their territory for the last several years. So I really feel like if I brought in a new cat, I just don’t know how that would work.
Speaker3: [00:20:15] Yeah, I don’t either. So what about, like, do you have a dog?
Jenna: [00:20:19] Okay. Yes, I have four dogs.
Dave: [00:20:21] How does the dog interact with the RAM?
Jenna: [00:20:24] So my lab just she’ll run around and she’s kind of like they’re cool. Whatever. My shepherd is like, I’m going to eat those things. She has a high prey drive, so that’s interesting. And then we have a hound and he’s just the cutest. But he’s a baby and he’s still figuring out. So I have not put him with them. He’ll go over to look at them, but I’ve not put him in their pasture. And then I have a little old dog who could care less. He’ll go over to see him but doesn’t want to be around him.
Dave: [00:20:54] So my my dogs have occasionally gotten with a deer to the point where it wasn’t them chasing the deer because we have deer in whitefish that just kind of hang out in town. And so then the relationship starts to change where the dog’s like, I’m going to chase you. And the deer is like, Well, I’m just going to hang out right here. And then they’re like, Oh, well. And so there might be barking or there might be like, maybe I’ll change the relationship. So is that kind of how it looks like they’re figuring it out.
Speaker3: [00:21:24] How to deal with each other?
Jenna: [00:21:25] I would say with my shepherd, though, like she is such a high prey drive and. There was one time she went towards them and they’ll turn and they’ll look. You know, they put their head down like they’re going to come for you. And she I’ve never seen her run so far, so fast. But I could see her. I don’t ever really see them. Like, I don’t know, maybe as she gets older. But she’s young and she’s definitely like, oh, these guys look fun. And they’re kind of like, No, thank you. So they will definitely turn and try to ram. It stresses me out, but my lab, they seem to all kind of just go around each other. Okay, okay, enough. Yeah.
Speaker3: [00:22:00] So it’s a five acre property.
Dave: [00:22:02] Do the Rams keep all the grass mowed or is it more grass than they can handle?
Speaker3: [00:22:10] No, they keep.
Jenna: [00:22:11] It all all up in the front. Our backyard is, is like a for the kids. So the Rams don’t go back there. We mow that but all in the front pastures, they keep it all maintained which is really nice.
Dave: [00:22:24] So if you were guessing, just what do you think? Like how many rams can be on a five acre parcel?
Jenna: [00:22:34] Okay. So I think they had upwards of ten total. Okay. They don’t require like you can have several on each parcel. It’s not like a coward. Is that like.
Speaker3: [00:22:47] What’s.
Dave: [00:22:48] That guideline that you’re referring to, The ten per.
Speaker3: [00:22:51] Parcel, I.
Jenna: [00:22:52] Think. Well, that’s what they had.
Speaker3: [00:22:54] That’s what the seller sold the property to you.
Dave: [00:22:56] So they, they had ten.
Speaker3: [00:22:59] Rams, they had.
Jenna: [00:23:00] Ten, they had four Rams and six ewes.
Speaker3: [00:23:04] And then.
Dave: [00:23:05] Were they exclusively ram people or did they have other things going.
Speaker3: [00:23:09] On? And then they just had the chickens. The chickens? Yeah. Okay. Did you guys.
Dave: [00:23:13] Keep the.
Speaker3: [00:23:13] Chickens? We did not keep the chickens. Are you going to add chickens?
Jenna: [00:23:16] So Kyle says no, but obviously I’m adding chickens. I have a whole chicken. Do you want.
Speaker3: [00:23:20] To go get eggs.
Dave: [00:23:21] In the morning? Is that a big deal?
Speaker3: [00:23:23] Okay. Yeah.
Jenna: [00:23:23] So we have a whole chicken coop. In fact, the other day I walked the property, Dave and I. Okay, so another thing I’ve had to realize, like, I’m going to have to take off at least a week come like, true spring to get the barn reorganized the coop ready. You know, this is just one week. I mean, at least a week. I work hard, you know. Okay, I can do this, but.
Speaker3: [00:23:43] I’m just imagine.
Jenna: [00:23:44] It might take some time off and come help me.
Speaker3: [00:23:45] Right? I might.
Jenna: [00:23:46] Recruit you.
Speaker3: [00:23:47] You can probably work on your property endlessly.
Dave: [00:23:49] It’s a normal piece of property.
Jenna: [00:23:50] Yes, but, I mean, just to kind of get, you know, from the winter. And there’s definitely things that I’ve realized, okay, that I would want to do different with the barn. But sure, the chicken coop after they left with the chickens, I mean, I haven’t really gone in there. There’s nothing in there. But I opened it the other day and I was like, okay, I’m going to have to mask up and clean this whole thing out and then maybe secretly start taking chickens in there. So Kyle doesn’t notice because he says no. And I’m like.
Speaker3: [00:24:15] I think.
Dave: [00:24:16] You’ll probably notice pretty.
Speaker3: [00:24:17] Quickly. You think, Yeah, darn. But yeah.
Dave: [00:24:22] That’s. It seems like a lot of people. I mean, even in Whitefish where I live, they’ve had a few city council meetings that were entertaining because in the guidelines you can have chickens and neighbors are like, I’m living in town, Why do you have. But but because the laws were written back when you would want to have eggs, right? It is written into the code of the City of Whitefish that you can have chickens and they can make noise in the morning and you can you know, so it’s normal. So, you know, I think I think you’re on good, solid ground to hold the line with the chickens with your husband.
Speaker3: [00:24:58] I know.
Jenna: [00:24:58] I mean, an eggs these days are really expensive.
Speaker3: [00:25:01] Yeah.
Dave: [00:25:01] The other day they were getting outrageous, right?
Jenna: [00:25:04] I know. So.
Dave: [00:25:05] Hey, so would you classify yourself as a as a hobby farmer? Hobby rancher? The reason I mention it is like I’m in the mortgage lending business and we have farms that will come up as something you can buy. And then we have hobby farms and then we have like homes and they’re kind of three different brackets. And the idea behind the hobby farm is it’s it’s like a higher quality version of farming. It’s not to just really be making your living farming and stuff. It’s more just a lifestyle and culture that actually adds value to the property. So these properties tend to be worth a little more because people are seeking this out.
Jenna: [00:25:47] Yes. So yes, I would say for sure. More of a hobby farm ranch. I if I had it my way, Dave, I would have told me the dream.
Speaker3: [00:25:58] That.
Dave: [00:25:59] You have this property in Flathead, it’s five acres. You’re going to maybe get some of these cows, these highland cows out there. Like, what’s the dream of it all? Like, what’s it look like?
Speaker3: [00:26:10] Paint the picture. Yeah.
Jenna: [00:26:11] Okay. So if I had it my way, I’d have 100 acres, I’d have tons of animals and like, that would be my job full time.
Speaker3: [00:26:20] So this could be a step up.
Dave: [00:26:22] It could be the dream. Okay. But while you’re fulfilling it here.
Jenna: [00:26:25] But we got to start small, right? Because I. We’ve not done this before. You know, like I came became a. Mom overnight. But yes, I would say the biggest thing for us is just having that. I don’t know. I think just working the land, working with the animals, it’s just a different lifestyle, you know, having the chickens to provide our eggs and the milking cow and the highland is a little bit selfish just because I love them so that I don’t want to say is a pet, but kind of but would love to have goats and every every animal on the little farm or ranch that would serve a purpose. Like they are there to do a job. Right. The Rams, even though I don’t plan to eat them, they keep the pastures, you know, down. So that really is our dream. I think now that we’re here living that out because we’ve never done that before. I mean, gosh, I would love having a ton more property and having a ton more animals.
Dave: [00:27:23] So this concept is you started it and now it’s growing on you.
Speaker3: [00:27:28] Oh, yeah, I love it. You want it more? I want.
Jenna: [00:27:30] It more. Okay.
Speaker3: [00:27:30] My husband would I noticed with.
Dave: [00:27:32] My wife and the horses as she spends more time with it, it definitely is growing on her. So yeah.
Jenna: [00:27:39] I mean, it’s just fun. You’re. You’re constantly learning new things. You’re outside. Like, there’s just so much reward to it. Like, I love nothing more than getting home, throwing on my boots and going out there and being with the animals and it’s just great.
Dave: [00:27:53] Are you motivated by healthier eating and having like eggs on the property and maybe an animal that you occasionally will you ever eat one of your animals or is that too weird for you?
Jenna: [00:28:06] No, it’s not too weird for me. Okay. I don’t know that I would want a ram just because I’m not a huge.
Dave: [00:28:10] But like if you raised a cow and then you could, you know, have a year’s worth of meat, potentially. So, yeah. Will that be something your family does?
Speaker3: [00:28:18] Potentially.
Jenna: [00:28:19] Okay. Yeah.
Speaker3: [00:28:21] So there’s a combination of.
Dave: [00:28:22] It’s not totally motivated in food, though, for you guys. It’s more of the experience of raising the animals. Yeah, Yeah. And then with the acreage, that’s probably max utilization of the acreage, you’re probably not going to grow corn and stuff out there or are you going to take a section of the property and grow food to eat?
Jenna: [00:28:42] So we do actually have a section of our property that is an organic garden. We didn’t start it. It was started years and years ago, but it’s a very mature garden actually, so it has all sorts of things. When we moved in, it was kind of overgrown like between when they listed it and when we when we actually moved in, they didn’t really keep up with it. But it has all sorts of things. We have several raised beds, there’s vegetables and fruit and we actually have fruit trees. And so I think way back when, I think when they started that property, it really started off as having organic food, like living off of the land. So that is something that definitely appeals to us and it is a lot of work and I work full time. But so this.
Speaker3: [00:29:30] Spring you.
Dave: [00:29:31] Might start getting into that.
Speaker3: [00:29:33] Okay.
Jenna: [00:29:33] That’s why I got to take time off. I’ve got to get my garden ready. I’ve got to get my animals all organized and.
Speaker3: [00:29:38] So now.
Dave: [00:29:39] That you’ve you’ve acquired Rams and you are in the process of learning how to raise rams, would you recommend Rams to people or is it just kind of a niche thing that you’re like, I don’t even know what to say?
Jenna: [00:29:53] I definitely wouldn’t say it’s a bad thing. I would. It’s definitely different when you don’t raise them. I would say if you’re going to do it, do it when they’re young. Because I think raising them, there’s there’s so much more to it than how.
Dave: [00:30:06] Old are the.
Speaker3: [00:30:07] Rams that have zero clue. Okay.
Jenna: [00:30:10] And honestly, they didn’t.
Speaker3: [00:30:11] Even do you know.
Dave: [00:30:12] How old they.
Speaker3: [00:30:12] Get? I don’t okay.
Dave: [00:30:15] Like I know horses get into their 30s. Yeah. And I don’t know what goats and rams.
Speaker3: [00:30:19] Do, but I.
Jenna: [00:30:20] Don’t know actually about.
Speaker3: [00:30:21] That. You’re going to find out. I’m going to find out.
Jenna: [00:30:24] I’m going to be an expert in Rams. Okay.
Dave: [00:30:26] And then so you guys sought out a hobby farm and then you ended up with one that had rams, Right. So having gone through the experience of seeking out a hobby farm, any advice, anything you learned that you’re like good and bad for? I know a lot of people want to do this.
Jenna: [00:30:43] So I would say the biggest thing, like for starters, we were looking more for the land and the ability to have animals versus having it set up. So as we were looking at areas, though, I will say we would look at like maybe one that had a ten acre parcel, but if it wasn’t utilized well, where you could easily fence it in for animals or if it had no fencing, it was like, we’re going to do the fencing, we’re going to have to build a barn, we’re going to have to you know, there’s so many other things that you start to notice this property. Really everything fell into place for it. It already had it all fenced in. And while it’s only five acres, it’s not huge. The way the house is positioned, it definitely feels like a lot more property. And then just having it fenced in and having the barn and the barn stalls, it makes it a lot easier. So I would just say like, you definitely need to know where you’re at with it. Like, are you wanting to just try it out or are you wanting to go? All in, because it is a lot for sure. I mean, even during the summer they they graze and they’re keeping the pastures down. But in the winter you have to get hay. They can’t, you know, like you have to figure out getting hay and how much are you going to need and getting that well ahead of time before the snow flies. So there’s just so many things. I think even with the Rams, I thought this is going to be so easy. And then you move in and you’re like, now what? So obviously there’s probably areas you can be better prepared for. But I would say if you’re looking for a hobby farm, definitely start looking for an area that you think is going to fit your needs best. Unless you’re planning to start from the ground up, you know.
Speaker3: [00:32:20] Like.
Dave: [00:32:20] Think about the care of the property. And the I noticed in Whitefish there have been a couple like little trophy ranches bought where you can kind of tell that they didn’t know what to do next because I saw one where they like got the hay done too late and then they just left it sitting out there all winter and then probably just got like, I don’t even know what they did with it. But it’s a beautiful house. But the property, I think they were like, Oh, that, right.
Speaker3: [00:32:47] We don’t just look at it.
Jenna: [00:32:48] Right. Well, and I think that’s I think that’s honestly like one of the things that like you it is a lot of work like it’s not like you just like come home and say hi to the ram and go to bed. I mean, you really do. There are more components to it, you know, when you have more land, especially our back area, like there’s more to mow, there’s more to maintain, you really do have to kind of plan out seasonally. Could could we have done it a little bit better? Yeah. But I almost feel like jumping into it forces you to really figure out some of those pieces. I think I told you it was interesting. It was like late fall before the snow. My husband was working. It was at night and it was thundering and lightning and our dogs were outside and my shepherd was in she was in a crate out back and she was freaking out. And I’m like, What is going on? So I go out there and I turn and this like yellow eyeball is staring at me and I’m like, Oh, what in the heck is that? And I realized it was the ram in my back yard. So I’m thinking like, one, how did they get out? Right? And two, how do you get rams back in? Like, I don’t know, they have these.
Speaker3: [00:33:50] That’s true. With horses.
Dave: [00:33:51] You, you know, you put a halter on them and you walk like, what do you do with the ram? Do you just throw a lasso around its neck or do you do you just encourage it to go where it’s supposed to go?
Speaker3: [00:34:01] Or.
Jenna: [00:34:01] So I actually it was literally like 11 at night and I had just jumped out of bed. So I threw on my boots and I grabbed a broom because that was like the only thing near me that I thought, okay, at least if they turned around me, I have like something in between. This is when we were still getting to know each other, right? So I, I went out and I started walking toward where the barn is. They had one of the interior barn doors had been left open. And so they got, they got through. So anyway, they, they were following me. So I’m like, all right, this is good. Whatever. All right, we’re going. They were my lab was with me, too. And so they started to follow her. Well, then she turned fast and it scared them. So then they ran back out into my back yard, and I’m like, Oh, my gosh, okay, Like, this is going to be ridiculous. So I go back in and she goes into their area, the dog. So they follow her in. Well, then she turns again and one goes to ram her and I’m screaming, I have the stupid broom. I’m thinking, if they ran me like no one’s going to know, my kids are asleep, my husband’s at work like this only happens to me, like, what the heck is this? So I finally decide like, okay, maybe I’ll just go put the dog away. That way she’s not, you know, getting in the way of it. And I grabbed some, like, alfalfa pellets and I just put them in, like, a little basin. And I was, like, shaking it, trying to guide them in. They’re all looking at me. And it was just the weirdest thing. Dave I swear the thunder’s cracking in the background, so that’s scary. And then I finally get them in there and I’m like, Oh my gosh, like that. Was this just the things you never thought you’d do? You know.
Speaker3: [00:35:34] You have to figure it out. You got to figure it out.
Jenna: [00:35:36] So there’s just so many things.
Speaker3: [00:35:38] That’s what we do.
Dave: [00:35:39] In the mortgage business. We figure stuff out. We always find things that we’re. But that’s that’s classic. All right. Well, any final things that you want to make sure people know about Rams or Hobby Farms? And then I’ve got a closing thing that’s a little different. Okay. Just to surprise you.
Speaker3: [00:35:56] Oh, it’s easy. Okay.
Jenna: [00:35:58] I would say, you know, if your dream is to do the hobby farm, like go for it, you should do it. Obviously, the more you can research ahead of time, the better equipped you’re going to be. But I feel like even even with all of the things we’ve read about you, just you never really know until you’re living it. You know, find find people that you can ask for advice. Our neighbor is amazing. Like I said, he grew up on a farm, so he’s so helpful.
Speaker3: [00:36:27] But so one.
Dave: [00:36:28] Thing you mentioned is if you can buy this type of property with cool neighbors, that’s a big.
Speaker3: [00:36:35] Win. It’s such a big win.
Jenna: [00:36:37] That makes sense if you can already get it fenced in and you know, because you kind.
Speaker3: [00:36:41] Of need your.
Dave: [00:36:41] Neighbors a little bit like your animal might go on a jailbreak over.
Speaker3: [00:36:45] There.
Jenna: [00:36:46] We had ours on a jailbreak. And man, you just never know. And honestly, like, it’s so good to have great neighbors and to just kind of I don’t know. And I will say a lot of this was things that I’ve dreamed up and God bless my husband because he is just like, all right. And he he does such a good job. I mean, he really, I feel like, had formed a relationship with the Rams even quicker than I did.
Speaker3: [00:37:11] So he enjoys the ride. Yes.
Jenna: [00:37:13] And you have to have that buy in from everyone. I mean, honestly, because it’s a lot of work by yourself.
Speaker3: [00:37:17] Yeah.
Dave: [00:37:17] This is not suburban America. This is the other end of the spectrum.
Speaker3: [00:37:21] That’s right. Yeah. Well, I think well.
Dave: [00:37:24] First of all, congratulations for taking the risk. Thank you. And being vulnerable to tell other people that you did this without having been properly trained in ram management skills.
Speaker3: [00:37:35] Yes, but.
Dave: [00:37:36] You’re figuring it out.
Speaker3: [00:37:37] We’re figuring it out.
Dave: [00:37:38] I think a lot of people figure things out and do just fine.
Speaker3: [00:37:41] Yeah. Yeah.
Dave: [00:37:43] Thank you. I think that’s a montana thing too, is to just go for it, you know, get it, get here and figure it out. Yeah, I when my wife and I moved here, we moved here, figured out how to get jobs, and then we figured out how to do everything. And then it sounded crazy to the people that where we came from. But we went and did that. But everybody we meet in Montana, that’s what they all do. They just get in here and they’re like, All right, figure it out because I want to be in Montana.
Speaker3: [00:38:11] Exactly.
Jenna: [00:38:12] Well, you know, my dad was a marine or was a marine, and he raised us really just you got to grab life by the horns. You got to figure it out, bite the bullet, literally.
Speaker3: [00:38:22] Grab it by the horns. Literally grab it by the horns. Ram horns.
Jenna: [00:38:26] Yes. So, you know, I don’t know. I think anyone that knows me knows me well, even though they know, you know, that this is not anything I’ve ever done. They’re like, if anyone can do it, Jenna, like, you would go buy a house with Rams. I’m like, why not? Life is short. You know, you got to do this thing.
Speaker3: [00:38:45] All right, I’m going to take you on a.
Dave: [00:38:46] Little diversion, okay? Fasten your seatbelt. There’s only one right answer, and you may get the wrong answer, but just hang in there. So.
Speaker3: [00:38:53] Oh, gosh.
Dave: [00:38:54] So where I went to college, I went to the University of Colorado, and I actually grew up in Fort Collins, which was home of the Colorado State University Rams. Oh, so just a heads up when if you do need to part with one of the Rams, you could contact them and see if they would like a mascot.
Speaker3: [00:39:14] Oh, my God.
Dave: [00:39:14] Because they have a ram on the side of the field during the games. But at Colorado University, University of Colorado, we are the Buffaloes. And we had a buffalo.
Speaker3: [00:39:24] That’s cool.
Dave: [00:39:25] So in the context of football, which is what it’s all about when you’re having these mascots and stuff, who’s who’s going to win the RAM or the buffalo?
Jenna: [00:39:37] I feel like the buffalo.
Speaker3: [00:39:38] Yeah I mean but you’re a decent.
Dave: [00:39:41] On your rams.
Speaker3: [00:39:42] But yeah.
Jenna: [00:39:42] But you know it’s nothing.
Speaker3: [00:39:43] Personal right So we we.
Dave: [00:39:45] All believe at the University of Colorado what you believe which is that the buffalo is superior to the Rams. So I appreciate your humility and not taking the Rams position just because you own one.
Speaker3: [00:39:58] Yeah.
Jenna: [00:39:58] No, I totally I actually would love to get a buffalo.
Speaker3: [00:40:04] How cool. You know what.
Dave: [00:40:06] That property me that would be probably you could do a buffalo or.
Speaker3: [00:40:09] Two out there could have like.
Dave: [00:40:10] One. Yeah. I have no idea. Just down across the lake they have, they have a wild buffalo herd. You can go check them out and see what they’re all about.
Speaker3: [00:40:20] But.
Dave: [00:40:21] But people do raise buffalo domestically.
Speaker3: [00:40:24] Yeah it’s awesome. That could.
Dave: [00:40:26] Be. So the other thing was when you find that property, you might just go ahead and find yourself raising something that the seller is like here. The property. Exactly. It comes with a buffalo or a ram.
Speaker3: [00:40:37] Or exactly a goat. You never know.
Jenna: [00:40:39] What you’re going to get. Right.
Dave: [00:40:41] Well, Jana, thanks for being here. Thanks for sharing your story. I think people will find it interesting. I know I had never heard of a ram raising in a domesticated sense. And so now I feel like I’ve learned something new. And I appreciate you bringing it to us.
Jenna: [00:40:57] Yeah, thanks for having me. It was a lot of fun. I’ll be back when I have more animals.
Speaker3: [00:41:02] All right. We’ll do a follow up.
Jenna: [00:41:04] Awesome. Thank you.