Well, 2008 hay crop is FINALLY done! Irrigation is off. Equipment is stored away. The cows are free to roam! Talk about spoiled pets! Good grief. You would've thought they were starved to death the way they kept busting through the fences and gates, not that they were the best fences and gates to begin with......... Chasing them around bales, through wind rows and back through gates into their holding pasture in the dark is not my idea of fun. God should've given cows some patience. OR Ma Nature could've cooperated a bit more and given us some great late haying weather! Oh well, now they can eat to their little hearts content. All the fresh alfalfa they could ever want. At least until the snow flies......... and with the weather we've been having lately, that could be tomorrow!!! Oh I hope not! Gotta get that wheat seed in the ground...............
Good grief. Here it is, September already. The boys are back in school, football games have started, and we're STILL doing hay! Yes, 3rd cutting is slowly becoming a reality. This time of year it's slow going. Waiting for enough "warm" days in a row to guarantee a "no rain" window of cutting time. THEN, making sure the hay is actually dry enough to bale so that it won't mold or burn the barn down after being stacked inside. THEN, waiting for the proper amount of DEW to be on the wind rows to that we can actually bale! Oh my. It's a painful waiting game sometimes.
Oh, then you have to factor in FOOTBALL. Yes, we only have 2 boys, but they both play. We have a nephew that plays on the PeeWee team that my Brother In Law coaches and Rich is an assistant. Plus College and Pro Football on TV. So, we have.......... Tim's games on Thursday afternoons, John on Friday nights, Jesse (nephew) on Saturday mornings (sometimes we get to watch his sister's soccer games then too), College ball on Saturday afternoons, Pro on Sundays - all day, JV High school games on Monday afternoons (home games only), Pro on Monday nights. So, that leaves Tuesdays and Wednesdays to "get stuff done". Except for the fact that since Rich helps with the PeeWees, he is at practice Tue, Wed, & Thurs. from 5-7. Soooooooo........... you get the picture.
Fall is just as busy as Spring and Summer. Oh, heck. Winter is busy too. Maybe that's just for me. Rich seems to have more down time during the winter. All we have then is Basketball.
So, yes, we are STILL in Farming mode. For another month or so. Then we can put the tractors, mower, rakes, and balers to bed for the winter. Except for that Fall Wheat that needs to be planted............
Wow! Has it been a long time or what? Well, let's see last I left you, we (I say "we" figuratively) were having baling problems, or I should say tractor problems. All has been taken care of. First cutting is baled, stacked, and sent on it's way to Tillamook! Second cutting is done, baled, stacked, and about 1/4 of it has been trucked out and on it's way to Tillamook. Still have about 6 more semi-truck loads to go. That's not to say 2nd cutting went without it's share of problems. Ended up purchasing a new baler. After breaking more bales than tying, the old baler just had to go! Sad to say good bye to an old friend, but............ The new one is sooooooo cool!!! LOL! Currently watering for 3rd cutting. The ooooollllllld combine was taken out of the barn last night. Unbelievably, it started right up!!! Rich was shocked, as was I. We have 6 whole acres of wheat to cut this year! Prices are still up for the little golden nuggets. Hopefully they will stay that way or even go up more! At least enough to pay for the fuel to run the dang combine!! Oh, yeah, I forgot......... gas prices are falling! Yeah, right. I won't be celebrating until I see $2 something gas again. Aaahhhhhhh........ the good old days. Well, I must leave you now. I'll try to get on here soon to update how the big harvest went.
Who said farming is dull?? They must have never owned farm equipment. Hay is all down, been raked and is drying quickly. Rich and John have been baling every morning and night, even Tim has done some. Yesterday, John blew a tire on the big, good tractor. Of course the tire shop does NOT keep these tires in stock so they have to order one and it will be in next week. UGH. Ok....... the OLD-EST tractor still works so Rich will use it and John can use the Old-er one until the tire comes in. Well............. I guess this morning Rich blew up the OLD-EST tractor. It won't even move! YIKES! So, they're down to 1 tractor and 1 baler and the weather is supposed to change this weekend. Man am I glad I had to go to work today! I'm sure home will not be a fun place to be today. My poor boys. Maybe the outlook will be better by 5:00 this evening when I get home. I should probably have something good planned for supper. Even if nobody is there to eat it.
Hay is all down. Being raked as we speak. Looks like a good crop for first cut. We've had temps in the 80's for the last few days. Plus a little wind. Good hay drying weather. I know it's summer because I finally got my first sunburn of the year. Always unintentional...of course. We had a double header baseball game in The Dalles on Saturday. I knew I didn't want to get my legs or shoulders burned so I wore a t-shirt and capris............ flip-flops and had my hair braded. Duh......... I never even thought about my neck and the tops of my feet. YOWCH! Woke up with a headache and felt sick all day Sunday. I'm guessing a slight case of sun poisioning. Felt better about 6:00 last night. I did manage to get a bit of laundry done and made a pineapple upside down cake (Rich's favorite) for Father's Day. Barely saw him yesterday though. He was on a tractor most of the day cutting the rest of the hay. He did come in for a nap in the early afternoon and let John mow for a couple of hours. Tim and I stayed in the house most of the day. We watched movies on the HBO free weekend. Tim actually did do a bit of work outside. He changed the oil on his 4 wheeler and then took Rich's phone out to him in the field. Tim has hay fever really bad, go figure, and by the time he got back to the house, he was a mess. He recently got some medications to help with it though so he used it and was feeling better. John is working on a Demolition Derby car that he and some friends are putting in the derby on the 4th of July this year. He said they almost have it done. Guess I'll have to go this year. Life on the farm is just starting to get busy. We have the whole summer ahead of us. Hope the good weather stays around.
It stopped raining! Rich cut hay like a mad man. I think we have about 150 acres down. And then................ the weather turned bad again. OH NO! Yeah, last night the wind blew so hard I thought the roof was going to come off! I think even the wind mills up on the hills above the river called it quits last night. I thought sure with the black clouds that were coming in last night would open up and just pour on us, but guess what! It barely sprinkled! Well, maybe it did rain, but the wind was blowing so hard, the drops either evaporated or got blown clear to Montana. Very cloudy this morning and praying for NO RAIN today. See, farmers are very fickle. First they want rain then they don't. Crazy people.
It's a sad thing.............. A true farmer is never happy. Rich is chomping at the bit..... ready to cut hay......... AND IT WON'T STOP RAINING! If we were wheat farmers he would be jumping for joy. We do have 6 acres of the golden nuggets, but not enough to warrent all this liquid sunshine. The hay is ready....... the alfalfa weevil is gorging himself on the luscious green leaves and it has become a game of who can clear the field faster......... the bugs or the swather. For now the bugs are in the lead. DARN! As soon at there's a little sunshine icon in the 10 day forcast windows on Weather.com............ the hay will be a-flyin. But until then...... Rich has to have a little patience. Very hard for a man who gets excited about going in circles all day on a tractor.
A little bit anyway. Enough to settle the dust. We could use a LOT more. Crops around here are really suffering. We are lucky enough to be able to make our own 'rain'. Warm today. Thunder storms are in the forecast. Don't doubt it the way it feels outside. Muggy. Rich and Tim worked calves today. John worked on his Junior project. It's an old Dodge flatbed truck that he rebuilt the motor in. He's supposed to take it to school on Tuesday for his final grade. Hope he makes it! LOL. I think Rich is going to follow him in with his pickup.
Rich started the irrigation on Monday. Wind has been blowing hard ever since. I think we watered the road more than the wheat! The boys now have something to do every morning and afternoon........... moving hand line. They're so excited! Yeah, right. Oh, and we had our mini heat wave. High 90's over the weekend and now we're back into the low 60's. Still won't plant any flowers yet. I'm sure we haven't had our last freeze of the year yet. Spent the whole weekend on the road. Tim played in a basketball tournament in Yakima Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and John was at State High School Basketball playoffs in Wenatchee on Saturday. Rich went to Wenatchee and I drove back and forth to Yakima. It was a good weekend, just hot!
High School baseball is over. On to Football. Spring practice starts in a few weeks. Just getting into the meat of Babe Ruth baseball. Had a game last night. Our boys won. It was a good game. Babe Ruth goes through June so we've got a while to go with that.
Memorial Day weekend is coming up this weekend. No real plans. We've been invited to camp with Rich's mom and brother. Might go visit them for a day. We've also been invited to a picnic with Rich's Aunt and Uncles at his Aunt's house on Sunday. Might go to that. We don't really know what we're doing. The only thing we know for sure is Rich will be moving water!
Wow! Been a few days. Well things are going........ Weather is still wierd. Still cold in the mornings. Getting warmer. Mid week is showing 90's!
The trees are really starting to bud out now. My lilacs are getting more and more buds on them all the time. I'm just hoping they have a chance to bloom and we don't get a major freeze in the next few weeks. I look at all the pretty flowers in the stores and want to get out and get some planted, but I know that if I did, we would get a killing frost and they would all be gone! I just need to be more patient. I look at all the pretty trees and flowers blooming down on the river and long to see them at our house, but it's just a different world up here! We're like 2-3 weeks behind.
The cows have decided that the grass is definitely greener on the other side of the fence. They have escaped their little pasture 6 times in the last 2 weeks! Now that they have had a taste of the sweet new grass in the fields, THAT'S where they think they need to be. They do go back to their designated area pretty easily still. They must wait until the grass has been harvested for hay before they can have the run of that field. NAUGHTY COWS!
Hay truck was coming up the driveway at 5:30 this morning. Rich was ready for it. Sure is hard to go back to sleep with a loader running right outside the windows and you only have another 1/2 hour to sleep anyway.
Got the boys up and off to school. Thought Tim was gonna miss the bus. It's like he has no concept of time! Is this a common 13 year old trait? I'm thinking yes. He went out to feed the 4-H steers at 7:10, had to tie up the dog and be out to catch the bus by 7:15. Thankfully the bus was late and didn't show up until 7:25 because he didn't make it out to the bus until 7:20! Kids! And people wonder why moms are stressed!!! It's because they have teenagers!
My kitchen is FINALLY getting done........ Maybe. The lower cabinets are in. The counter is being installed today. Was supposed to be Saturday, but the counter guy almost cut his thumb off while making the final cut on the back splash Friday night! YIKES! He's ok and is at the house today. I'm hoping that Rich has enough motivation to install the sink and dishwasher today too. Then it's on to installing the upper cabinets so I can get all of my dishes off of the dining room table!
No baseball today! I'm thinking I can actually cook a proper supper! Pork chops, potatoes and peas sound good.
OH! There is a nest of mice that have decided to take up residence in my stove. More precisely, under the oven. I baked some cupcakes Saturday night and the heat from the oven must have warmed them up and woke them up! They peeped and chirped all night long then. Also sounded like the mother was trying to tear apart the whole unit. Scratching and chewing all night. My guess is she was ripping out insulation to make more nest. Gonna have to get some more bait! I think they're coming in from the hay stacks. Rich has really been disturbing their homes among the bales for the last few weeks in order to feed the cows. Yes, the same cows that seem to think they're starved to death! Anyway, I didn't hear the mice last night so either the mother decided that the oven wasn't a proper place to raise young'uns or they didn't wake up because I didn't turn the oven on. It was a peaceful sleep last night. Aaaaahhhhhhh..................
Got home last night about 10:30 after Tim's game. Went to bed about 11:30. Last time I looked at the clock was about 11:45. About 12:30 AM I heard cows....... Loud.... which means they are not out in the pasture....... no...... They are right outside the bedroom window!!!! Up we go! Throw on some clothes.... get John up (let Tim sleep)... Out the door we go... John and I with flashlights and Rich jumps on the 4 wheeler. Sure enough....... There they all are (thank God there's only about 30 of them... each with a calf) standing in my back yard and in the Wheat field! Of course the moon is not out so it's pitch black. Here we go....... running through the field and yard trying to get these 4 legged beasts turned around and headed back to the pasture in the dark. It's almost a miracle I didn't run into something (no contacts in just my glasses on and they're not very good). Ok, so they get turned around and of course there's no casual walking to the gate, they take off on a dead run in John's direction. He thought he was a gonner. But... they decide to head for the gate... good cows... except..... they didn't get out through the gate so it wasn't open for them to go through. Again, John has to wade through them, carefully so as not to spook them into another stampede, and open the gate. Ok, gate's open.... Rich and I shoo them through and he closes the gate. Oh no! They're heading back around the barn to the place where they got out in the first place! Rich takes off on the 4 wheeler at Mach 7.... barely misses the dog, who by the way, isn't much of a cow dog when it really matters. Rich gets to the back of the barn just as the ring leader gets to the hole. They had pushed through some panels that were tied shut with the ever indestructable baling twine. Rich was able to keep them from going through again and got the panels closed. All back in, safe and sound....EXCEPT... 2 rogue, naughty calves that decided they didn't want to head back with their mothers. They got stuck, or so they thought, behind a fence and hung out there ALL NIGHT... crying and whining when they realized they were alone. Of course all they had to do was turn around and go back through the yard and over to the gate and they would be fine. But NOOOOOO........... So.... not only were they bawling all night, so were their mothers (trying to get their babies to come to them), and because of all the noise they were making... the dog, who originally didn't even notice the cows were out, decided he needed to bark at them all night, or what was left of it. As it started getting lighter, the birds and quail started making their morning wake up calls. The alarm went off at 5:50 AM. Why even try to hit the snooze. Up and at'em. Short night..... long day...... 20 oz mocha required. Ahhhh....... Life on the farm.
Actually got a bit of a tan line on my arms. Went from watching Babe Ruth baseball Thursday and Friday nights in 35° to watching High School Baseball on Saturday in 73°!
Today has been nice.... or what I've seen of it. Haven't been outside since 7:15 this morning when I went from the house to the car to go to work. Sun is shining, sky is clear and blue, but the wind is blowing - typical spring in the Columbia River Gorge.
Hay truck came in at 6:00 again this morning. Gotta get last years crop out of the barn so we can start on the 2008 crop! Hubby and the driver were done with the first trailer and just starting on the 2nd when I left.
Off to another baseball game tonight - Babe Ruth. Tomorrow is another one - Babe Ruth, but it is at home for a change! This traveling stuff is getting quite expensive what with the price of gas and all! Sheesh!
Better sign off...... Gotta go pay my property taxes!
Good grief! What happened to spring? We actually had a skiff of snow on the ground. It was 23° when I left for work at 7:00 this morning and the high for today is supposed to be about 50°. This is not good for the crops! Calf crop is good though! Only one left to arrive! No hay truck this morning. Thank goodness! Too cold to load. Rich's new flat bed 5th wheel trailer arrived last week. Since he was at baseball practice, as was DS#1, I was the only one available to meet the guy out on the highway. He arrived amidst multiple sherrif vehicles, state patrol vehicles, and an ambulance flying by. I was getting worried something had happened with the trailer! I was relieved when he actually showed. He unhooked the trailer from his rig and I proceeded to back up to it myself. It only took twice!! After his few instructions on what NOT to do and receiving the paperwork, I was hooked up and on the road in less than 10 minutes. Got home just fine, parked the trailer and headed back into town for practice. Ahhh...... the life of a farm wife.
Hay truck came in at the crack of dawn (well, 6:00 AM anyway). Looks like the one above. Thank goodness hubby is the one that has to load it. Well, he runs the loader anyway, the truck driver is the one that actually handles the bales. Whew..... was it ever windy too! Thought the poor guy was gonna blow clean off the truck! I left for work at 7:15 and they were almost half done! They move fast when it's cold. We had temps in the mid 70's over the weekend. Back to the low to mid 50's today. Sun is shining though and at least it's not raining.....today.
What a gorgeous day! Up at 5:30 to get Tim up and off with a friend for a mini baseball clinic in Yakima. Back to bed. Up at 8:00 to get John up and off to baseball pre-game. Back to bed. Up at 9. No wind this morning so the crop dusters were flying as soon as the frost was off. Our new bull was delivered today. He young so he looks small next to the cows. But he should get the job done! Wind was picking up by 10:00 am. Rich felt better about going to John's game since he wouldn't be able to spray. Went to the Double header vs. Zillah. Our boys won both games. John played well and had a couple of good hits. Was a looooooong couple of games. Some coaches just have a hard time controlling themselves when it comes to calls made by the umpires. Makes you wonder sometimes. Mowed the lawn when we got home this evening. John is working on the Dodge truck he's fixing for his Junior project. It hasn't run in a couple of years and he's bound and determined to drive it to school..... soon! It's a good project for him. He's learning all kinds of stuff about motors and such. Well, suppertime. What to have........ Hmmmmmm.............. why is it always such a chore to figure this out? Maybe grilled burgers.