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Posts Tagged ‘Cross Creek Cattle Company’

New Video Released

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Here it is! Sibling Rivalry‘s brand-new music video! When you go to view it, please make sure to put it on full screen. I had a little trouble embedding the correct size video.

If you are confused about what I am talking about, please go back and read, “Sibling Rivalry.”

The entire video was not filmed here at Cross Creek Cattle Company, but a good portion of it was. It should be obvious for example that we do not have a race track on the ranch. The woods, the horses, the cows, the old, red bunkhouse, the tall grass, etc are all from here. For people that have visited here, you will see places you recognize.

We were honored to be a part of this promotional video for this music duo. Enjoy their story, their music, and the scenery. If you live relatively close, Sibling Rivalry will be performing October 4 at Bernhardt Winery in Plantersville. It will sure to be fun.

Sibling Rivalry

Thursday, July 24th, 2014
Members of Sibling Rivalry, Mitchell and Olivia Butaud, standing with my dad, Kenton Holliday, and his horses.

Members of Sibling Rivalry, Mitchell and Olivia Butaud, standing with my dad, Kenton Holliday, and his horses.

Cross Creek Cattle Company had the privilege of being the setting of a music video last Saturday. Olivia and Mitchell Butaud form the musical group, Sibling Rivalry. They are from Magnolia, Texas, which is only about 20 minutes south of our ranch.

This brother and sister team makes quite the duo. They both play musical instruments and sing, but Olivia’s unique tone sets them apart.

The music video they were shooting Saturday was a promotional video in the hopes of catching the attention of those in the music business. After listening to several of their songs off of their website, I won’t be surprised when they make it big. They are extremely talented.

Olivia penned a song about bullying that has become the Anti-Bullying Campaign’s theme song for Safe School Helpline. It is called “No Medicine Can Heal.” Listen to it here. Not only is her voice soulful, the lyrics touch the heart.

Olivia and Mitchell Butaud bOn Saturday, they used various backdrops on our ranch for the scenes of their video. One is the old, red bunkhouse on the property. Olivia perches atop of an old deer feeder while Mitchell sits beside her on an old sawhorse playing the guitar. They also rode our horses, Dolly and Commander, across pastures of tall, green grass, including under a picturesque moss-covered oak tree.

I cannot wait to see how the final video turns out. We definitely wish the Butaud family and Sibling Rivalry a successful future. We would wish you luck, but I don’t think y’all will need any. Keep working hard, strive towards your goal, and pray big.

You never know what each day will bring on the ranch. Life is never dull, that’s for sure. Please check out Sibling Rivalry Duo to read up on them, see photographs, read their bios, and of course, listen to their recorded songs. You can purchase their singles from iTunes.

Stellar Review from the Margiottas

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

I received this letter last week. It is from a sweet family from Buda, Texas, who became Cross Creek Cattle Company customers last year. I wanted to share it with you. Jaime gives her reasoning behind choosing grass fed beef. She also gives good information about how long an order lasted for her. It is truly a great review for these reasons. If I was searching for a place to purchase grass fed beef, I would find this letter extremely helpful. I hope you agree with me.

Lara & Family,

We want to take a moment to thank you for your phenomenal beef! What started us on the journey to purchase a whole animal was reading labels. As I prepared a meal with store bought organic, grass fed beef I noticed that it stated the beef was from 4 different countries. This concerned me, I couldn’t track even the country this beef had come from! It was clear on that day we needed to go local. We purchased our first fresh beef 2 years ago from another rancher – the beef, while high quality had a strange fishy aftertaste. We weren’t sure we liked fresh grass fed beef. We decided to try another rancher and purchased a whole cow from Cross Creek Cattle Company and split between 4 families. We were anxious to give this beef a try!

When making hamburger patties with this meat, it doesn’t shrink and it produces some of the juiciest burgers we have ever eaten! Our kids even state how much better this meat tastes! The strip steaks are perhaps my favorite cut, although the rib-eyes are a close second! It takes our family of 5 about 7 months to go through ¼ animal. We also appreciate the time Lara took to go over the cut sheet with us, and the processor for doing an excellent job meeting our needs. The packaging was done in a manner that allowed our family not to have waste. The customization of cuts was amazing and beyond our expectations.

When we picked up the beef Lara took the time to take us out to the pasture and meet the cows. Our 3 year old son made the journey with us from Austin and was amazed at the farm animals. Lara took him out to pet the horses, sang to the cows to get them to come out and our son received an invaluable lesson in where food comes from. She took time to explain why they raise their animals in a loving environment, and it shows that happy cows do make better meat.

There are not enough good things to say about the DeHaven family, the quality of beef and the humane way these animals are raised. We tell everyone we know about the beef and recommend the Cross Creek Cattle Company to all!
Kudos to you and your family for doing it the right way! You provide high quality, nutritious beef at an affordable price. You have customers for life with this family.

The Margiotta Family
Buda, Texas

A Family Farm

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

In Drovers Cattle Network this week, an article called “Farming and Ranching-It’s a Family Business” peaked my interest for obvious reasons. Click on the title to read it for yourself.

The article gives many statistics about the farming and ranching business in the United States. The point the editor, Mary Soukup, is trying to make is that agriculture gets a bad wrap sometimes by “anti-modern agriculture distractors.” They use terms like corporate giant or factory farms to describe agriculture today.

Her point is that 97.6 percent of all US farms today are family farms, and they are responsible for producing 85% of what I would assume are available products for consumption. However, that is not explicitly stated. What really interested me is the major products provided by family farms. Corn, cotton, soybeans, and wheat are the major field crops. Poultry, eggs, and hogs are also high on the list. 75% of all dairy products are provided by family farms.

This is so different from my experience. I am not refuting the facts listed in the article. I don’t have any hard evidence. However one glance around here and you will see that there are many Sanderson chicken farms, which I guess technically are owned independently by different families. Most of the local dairies that were in full swing when I was a little girl are all closed. Also almost every pasture is home to cattle of some breed. Cattle and/or beef are not even mentioned in the article.

Now I realize that Grimes County, Texas is not a picture of all agriculture in the United States, but I am explaining my surprise at what this article describes. It also makes me wonder who is then raising all the beef for human consumption if it does not even make the list.

One thing that I cannot argue with is at the end of the article. In the second and third to last paragraph, Ms. Soukup writes,

To be successful in today’s agricultural sector, one has to have a savvy business mind and sharp technical skills. It takes a special knowledge to know when to sell a bin full of corn versus when to hold it or how to skillfully help a mama cow deliver a baby calf coming breach. It also [takes] a special sense of pride, commitment and tradition. It takes both. Family farms and ranches come in all shapes and sizes. They were built on years of sacrifice and hard work. They were maintained by making good business decisions. They live on, in part, because of the tradition.

At Cross Creek Cattle Company, we are proud of the fact that we are a family farm raising grass fed beef for ourselves and our customers. We work hard in perfect weather and less than perfect weather to care for our land and animals. We hope to pass the knowledge and business down through the ages. Without a doubt, it is a true family farm.

A Perfect Day

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

As I stood watching the ol’ red tractor noisily chug across the green pasture, I sighed. A sigh of deep contentment. The sky was as blue as blue could get dotted with white, fluffy clouds here and there. The grass was green from all the rain and sunshine lately. It was quite picturesque.

Soaking up vitamin D as my husband’s chief gate opener, I was not on the clock per se, but was completely in my element. Out-of-doors on one of the most beautiful days of the year. So beautiful, I feel guilty for coming in to write about it.

I watched as my husband put out hay for the herd. Usually they are hindrances to his progress. Curious- they watch closely. Hungry- they cannot wait to get their tongues around the dry, yellow grass. But today they were absent and uninterested.

He was able to put the bales out quickly and we stood at the top of the hill looking down onto the herd spread out over the hilly pasture. Each cow’s head down slowly making progress in the green grass. Some animals were down by the pond getting a drink. Some were sitting down in the sunshine chewing his/her cud. Everyone was happy and content.

“Why can’t every day be like this one?” I wondered to myself. A day formed perfectly. Contentment resonating in my soul. Beauty appearing in the minute details of God’s creation.

I smiled answering my own question. Knowing that I like most everyone else would grow complacent about days like this if it was expected every single day. One enjoys the view from the top of the hill better after struggling through the depths and darkness of the valley.

At the apex of the most beautiful day of the year, I stood hand in hand with my husband taking it in with our senses. Trying to record the scents and sounds and sights mentally for future reference when days are less than perfect. Grateful that this is our life for now. Enjoying life as it comes.

Get out and enjoy today wherever you find yourself.

Basking in Our Blessings

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

Many firsts have happened in the last few weeks. We had our first light freeze, which resulted in our first fire of the winter season in our fireplace. We also had the first flood of any kind last week.

For years, we have been in some stage of a drought condition. Last winter was relatively wet and I believe the moisture we received then enabled us to weather the very dry summer of this year. We just haven’t had to time to recover from the severe drought of the prior four years.

We have been so blessed as of late with rain that one night of steady rain caused enough run-off to rush down the once dry creek beds and flow over the roads. The county literally shut down our county road from traffic due to the minor flooding.

This rain changed things at Cross Creek Cattle Company. First, it illustrated that the soil is saturated, which has been thirsty for years now. Then it filled the ponds and lakes, which had not been up to full-capacity for some time. The level of the water in the lake behind my house rose to just under the overflow drain. That has not been achieved in so long I cannot remember the last time.

As I was reading earlier this week I came across a passage that really spoke to our circumstances.

You visit the earth and cause it to overflow;
You greatly enrich it;
The stream of God is full of water;
You prepare their grain, for thus You prepare the earth.
You water its furrows abundantly,
You settle its ridges,
You soften it with showers,
You bless its growth.
You have crowned the year with Your bounty,
And Your paths drip with fatness.
The pastures of the wilderness drip,
And the hills gird themselves with rejoicing.
The meadows are clothed with flocks
And the valleys are covered with grain;
They shout for joy, yes, they sing. (Psalm 65:9-13)

We are not the only ones shouting for joy. The wild animals, our cattle and horses, the birds of the air, the trees and bushes, the grasses in the fields: everything is refreshed. There is a softness in our surroundings that is hard to describe, but it is tangible. It is as if we have all been bathed and and washed clean. Perhaps, this will be the end of the drought or maybe it is just a respite from the pattern of dryness and heat. Either way, we will enjoy it and bask in the blessings from above.

Out of the Mouth of Country Kids

Thursday, October 31st, 2013

Kids say the darnedest things. Whole television series have been devoted to entertaining us with the things that children say. My children are no exception; they keep me in stitches. Just the other day as we were driving back from a community Trunk or Treat, my seven year old son announced that he was going to sell his candy and make some money. My older son asked, “How much are you going to charge?” Isaac responded without missing a beat, “Boys-six dollars; Girls-free.”

As cute as that was, I realized that many of the things that my children say are based entirely on experience. They know cowboy terms, parts of a horse or cow, and other ranch jargon. They have witnessed the miracle of birth, the breeding process of cattle in a pasture, and watched as animals die for various reasons. As we were studying dragonflies at the lake, we were startled by a huge bass leaping out of the water to swallow the flying insect. The cycle of life is an ever-present part of our daily regimen.

Since our experiences from living on a ranch are somewhat unique to the rest of the United States, I wanted to share two short conversations I have had in just the last week with my children that drew my attention to how unique their life really is.

My only daughter is a dancer. She studies and dances ballet three times a week. She is determined to do very well and pushes herself to progress. When we arrived home after one of her more difficult dance classes. She was stretching and bending her torso while simultaneously grimacing. I asked her if she was alright. Kyla answered, “Yeah, my back-strap is just sore.”

The second and more shocking conversation involved my son, Isaac. He is the seven year old. Isaac loves to catch grasshoppers and study their individuality. He’ll show me a green one or a really large one with a more hardened exoskeleton, etc. Isaac likes to keep them for a little while in a glass Mason jar to observe them more thoroughly.

One morning, he ran into the house through the front door excitedly calling, “Mom! Mo-om!” I walked out of the kitchen wiping my wet hands on a towel while asking what was the matter. He assured me nothing was wrong, but that he had found a girl grasshopper. Then I noticed that both of his fists were clenched tightly.

I found his jar and helped him empty his hands of the two new specimens. I inquired how he knew that he had found a girl because between you and me I have no idea how to tell the difference. He looked at me and said most matter-of-fact, “The other grasshopper was on top of her.” I could not help but giggle as the reality of his response dawned on me.

These are true conversations straight out of the mouth of my country kids. I hope they made you smile. If you have one to share, please send it to me via email,

Fall Trail Ride

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

Every October Cross Creek Cattle Company hosts a kick-off trail ride for the Grimes County Jr. Deputy Sheriff Mounted Posse. This year the event was held last Saturday, and we could not have asked for better weather. The skies were clear, the air was cool, and a light rain fell early that morning.

The horses were excited and ready to go. They like to go to new places and meet new horses. They are as ready for the adventure as the kids. We planned a trail that was a little challenging for beginning riders and pure fun for the more experienced. They rode across pastures, through brush and woods, down and up creeks, over logs, etc.

This was the first year that my son, Isaac, rode solo. He did great! His favorite part was coming up the creek bank because he loves to go fast. Most horses do not walk up steep inclines; they prefer to take it at a jog. Wouldn’t you?

Andrew, who is a year younger than Isaac, rode in the saddle controlling the horse with the reins, but my husband rode behind on the horse’s rump. We felt safer with Lane there to stop any bad behavior on the horse’s or Andrew’s part. Next year, Andrew will probably graduate to riding solo like his big brother.

The older kids rode like experts. They blazed the path ahead, leading the group through the home ranch. Both Kyla and Jake enjoyed visiting with their friends.

After the ride, we ate. My husband smoked a brisket and some pork sausage. I heated up some beans, made iced tea, and iced down some sodas. Our guests brought the sides and desserts. It was a joint effort, and everything was delicious. We feasted not only on food, but on good conversation.

Cross Creek Cattle Company is a proud sponsor to the Posse, which is a great youth organization in our county. There are only a handful of similar posses in the state of Texas. Children learn riding and horsemanship skills, but also leadership. They learn to speak to and greet members of the local government. They represent the Sheriff and the county, and are also ambassadors of the Go-Texan Committee. We are thrilled to give them a relaxing time on the trail before their busy season of events begin.

Family Adventures:Dove and Pulled Pork

Thursday, September 26th, 2013

In my circle of friends and family, it is a known fact that I love to eat dove. My birthday was this week and my middle child decided to surprise me with grilled dove for lunch. He began hunting off and on during his free time. As the date drew closer for my birthday, he became more and more determined to bring home dove. So he called my brother for help.

My brother’s family readily agreed to come out to the ranch in order to help. As we made our way to the new ranch, we received a phone call that the hog trap was full. My father, his wife, and their friends had already eliminated the problem animals, but now the hogs had to be removed.

My three sons from twelve to five years of age, my husband, my brother, and my four-year old nephew began the removal process, which is dragging the bodies out of the trap. The job was made more difficult by the uneven ground where the hogs had plowed up the soil in the trap and by the size of the hogs.

Regardless of the difficulty even the youngest member of the hog removal team pulled his weight, quite literally. The smallest hog weighed as much as him. He struggled, he worked, he fell, he got up, he persevered. We were all praising him for completing the task. With a smile he looked up at me and said, “That’s my first time to pull a hog.” It puts a new spin on the term, “pulled pork.”

After our feral hog adventure, we returned to the purpose of our outing. We set our sights on the sky. We saw many dove, but they were all flying just out of range. My brother did bring down one that dared to get a little closer. I don’t blame the birds for avoiding us. We were hardly incognito.

We had the whole crew. Children outnumbered the adults and the former could not sit still or be quiet to save their lives. My seven year old son discontent with sitting in a chair began standing near the trunk of the tree. We thought this was better since he was more hidden. That is until I heard my sister-in-law say, “I think we have a monkey in the tree.” I turned around to see half of the tree swaying back and forth with my son at the root of the problem.

Well, we all learned a lesson or two. My nephew jumped in with the men and pulled his own weight. My son was able to not only bring home some dove, but he also marinated it and grilled it for lunch. Even though dove hunting is considered a social event by most, we learned the kids are still too young.

I was reminded once again the importance of family. Working as a team, we make quick work of a hard task. Including our children in work and fun allows us enjoy each other and pass down knowledge to the next generation. Cross Creek Cattle Company is a family-owned and operated ranch with roots deeply planted in Texas for seven generations now. It is fun to see adventures, stories, memories, knowledge, and skills being written on our children’s hearts as they too grow to love the land, each other, and God, who has blessed us abundantly.

A Smoking Hot Roast

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

The quintessential Sunday meal following the morning worship service at the local church has to be pot roast, potatoes, carrots, and rolls. The addition of any other vegetable or salad depends on how far one needs the meal to stretch or how many people are feasting with you. My grandmother, who I affectionately called Mama, was an excellent cook with a tremendous gift for hospitality.

I cannot tell you how many Sunday afternoons our extended family gathered around my grandmother’s two long tables to feast on her cooking and good conversation. As a child, these meals became a staple in my life. They attached and held my heart to hers. Even though my Mama is no longer with me on this earth, my mouth still waters when I smell roast cooking and see yeast rolls rising in well-greased pans.

Most people cook roast in a Crock pot or in covered pan in the oven. They employ the wet cooking method, which means simply that the beef is left to cook in its own juices slowly or in another liquid. Braising is another name for this cooking method. Regardless which name you use to describe how you cook your roast, the roast beef cooks at a lower temperature for a longer time to ensure tenderness and juiciness.

In my house, I’m not the only one who cooks. My husband also does his share, and he mainly relies on more manly methods of cooking, like an outdoor grill. He also has an electric smoker, which I call the man’s answer to the Crock pot. He sets the temperature, adds water and some wood chips to the pan, and can almost forget it until the food is ready.

Yesterday he was smoking pork ribs and surprised me by also adding a grass fed beef chuck roast. He sprinkled some Cajun-style seasoning on it as his only preparation. Then he placed it on a rack in his electric smoker at 225 degrees Fahrenheit for about 4 hours, or until the internal temperature hit 160 degrees. I sliced it up thinly and served it with cold pea salad. It was delicious!

Although nothing like my Mama’s roast from my childhood, smoking the roast delivered a new texture and new flavor to the beef. As tasty as her roast was, it was difficult to slice. Using a fork, her roast fell in chunks of moist threads of beef. The smoked roast sliced perfectly in thick ribbons. These ribbons of beef were slightly more dry in comparison to the wet cooking method, but not dry at all and the slices were no less tender. The smoke from the wood chips imparted a good flavor and the seasoning gave the beef a bit of heat. All in all, smoking the chuck roast was a great idea.

I have so much sentimentality attached to my Mama’s roast that I would choose it over smoked roast if presented with the two options, but honestly that is the only reason. Smoking a grass fed roast resulted in a delicious dinner, easy preparation, and easy cleanup. It is definitely a viable option for the home cook. My children loved it and who knows? They might think back fondly on Daddy’s smoked roast on Sunday afternoons. If you try it, please let me know what you think.

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