"If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day." — E.B. White

Monday, May 30, 2011

Big Red and Blue

No parades or BBQ's for us this year.
It may be a holiday but I'd bet most farmers are workin' hard today.
All the rains this spring have made it very difficult to get corn or soybeans planted  or hay baled.
This Memorial Day weekend has found our family in the fields from sunup til sunset.

We call her Big Red. 
Note The Farmers proud creation of a double rake. 
He welded it out of an I-beam and two smaller hay rakes.
My hubby hates to waste time.  ;-P

He took this pic of ME on Big Blue with the round baler.
Note I'm fryin' up in the dust n sun while he rides in comfort in a cab with a.c. n stereo!
This was my first time with the old fussy round baler.
Usually I operate the square baler but we are rushed to get lots of hay made in little time.
I tried to learn and remember the sequence;

  1. Watch for the indicator to get to the (almost) full line
  2. Stop n take Big Blue outta gear, leave rpms up
  3. Play with toggle switch to move baling twine along round bale just right
  4. Disengage PTO
  5. Don't forget to make sure that toggle is really off and twine was cut!
  6. Back up and open baler door.
  7. Drive forward and close door.
  8. Make super sure it locked itself or next bale will fall out too early.  grrr
  9. Slowly engage PTO and drive off watching that new bale starts to form correctly.

Still, much as I fuss n complain (I'm a terrible farmer), I truly love it.
This is Blue's View!
As the sun sets the dreaded event happens... Equipment breaks. 
Bad words are said. Tools are flung. 
You see it's a race to get all the hay we've carefully fluffed, raked n dried up off the field before dew sets in at sunset. Then it's all for naught and we must fluff n rake it out again tomorrow. Hay must be very dry before it's baled. We didn't make it this time. The Farmer drove the baler back to the shop and fixed a chain. Ready for more work as soon as the dew dries in the morning. Now we're a big behind.

But you can bet that at the end of the day we'll stop and drink a toast to all those who've fought to keep this beautiful land free for us.
 My Grandpa. We visited Arlington last year.

Thanks to ALL who serve!!!
Enjoy the holiday everyone!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Keeper Kitten

Can't believe our good fortune...
We'll never replace our sweet "Hello Kitty"  but,
it seems we've been adopted by another special kitty...
Meet S'mores!
Named by Sarah. Jack's first name for her was Sweet Watermelon. But he agreed that didn't roll off the tongue quite as easily!
This pretty kitty came from our neighbors who had adopted her mother...
Momma cat had three kittens.
The neighbors own Jack Russel terrier killed one, then played tug o war with it's buddy on the second.
Poor S'mores musta figured her days were numbered so she announced she was now ours. Loudly.

She seems to enjoy chores and gardening with me too. 
She's a keeper!

Joining my farm friends at Verde Farm and Deborah Jean's blog hop!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Milk it!

 (Barbara L. Salisbury/The Washington Times)
Yesterday there was a rally on Capital Hill that I really wanted to attend but couldn't... It was in support of the right to drink (and sell) raw milk. The cow pictured above is named "Morgan" and lives not too far from me! Liz Reitzig, one of my old friends (and riding student when she was a child) helped organize the event. She is the Secretary of the National Independent Consumers and Farmers Association. 

My family became interested in local food rights after watching Food Inc. and Fresh, the Movie as part of a series hosted by our farmers market friends. We were really inspired us to get involved and talk to our elected representatives. The food safety bill (read comments below the article) which seemed so harmless on the surface, troubled us greatly once we investigated further. Last year The Farmer, Sarah, Jack and I all went to DC and lobbied against the bill as it's written. It was a tremendous learning experience for us all and great fun! We even met my hero Joel Salatin. If you and your family are eager to learn more about local foods, I hope you'll explore and get involved too!

I'm linking here

Monday, May 9, 2011

Farm Fun Giveaway!

F I N A L L Y!

My small THANK YOU to all my bloggie buds.
I'd like to give all one of you a small gift for visitin' with me.

I've put together a bucket o farm fun.
Inside you'll find fun gloves for cleaning etc, cherry dish towel, bee soap, cow lotion, goat potion, chick pens n pads, pony pals n polka dots galore.
Geraniums not included but you may use it for flowers
 or magazines... or toilet tissue.
Or whatever is fun for YOU.

Followers are automatically entered.
Leave a comment and you're entered again.
Since it's taken me a month to get this up, I'll give you a month to enter.
I'll leave this pic on my sidebar 'til it's over on June 6th.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Babies Don't Keep

Cleaning and scrubbing will wait ’till tomorrow, but children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow. So quiet down cobwebs! Dust go to sleep! I’m rocking my baby. Babies don’t keep. 
– Ruth Hamilton

I've always loved this.

I apologize for my lack of postings, but I've been enjoying my babies n fur babies A LOT lately. Tomorrow I WILL post my giveaway and soon fill you in on all the farm activities.

This morning I awoke to the smell of coffee ready and so many happy sounds... No, not pancakes sizzlin'... BETTER (to this farm girl's ears); Rooster crowing, birds gone crazy, kids not far behind makin' noise on their bikes (yes, in their jammies w/sweatshirts)... AND POWER TOOLS!

As I looked out my window I saw the continuation of my gift from The Farmer...

A new barn/run in shed in the WORKs!

This part has taken him under 6 hours. He's just stopped to go ted hay. While it's drying he'll come back and do more here. I can't believe how hard he works. For me. 
How blessed am I?!

Hope you're feeling blessed and able to share this day, your way, with your family! <3