Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Ladies and Gentlemen....

Start Your Engines!


It's time for making hay.  The swather cut the first windrows yesterday, and today it's been full-steam-ahead.  It's sort of like the Indie 500 of the summer for us.  Up and down, round and round.  All the engines and all the moving parts have been checked, repaired, greased and tested before sending the machinery out to the hay fields.  Tire pressure is right, the windshields are clean, the seats are set (my tractor got a new seat!), the radio is on, and we're off to race against the weather and against time as the hay matures a little more as the days tick off.  Every day the hay gets more mature and loses a little more feed value so it's important to keep moving from field to field, getting the very best hay up at the right time.  We're hoping for just a few pit stops and no break-downs.  The faster we can get the hay up, the better the chance for getting quality hay and not losing any of it to hail or extreme heat.

NumberOneSon is turning the windrows over to dry.  Two windrows are raked together into one, and when the moisture is right, the hay will be baled up into big round bales.

This old haying equipment was used back in the old days.  It was horse-drawn.  My FIL recalls the days of making hay with it very well.  All I can say is, "Man, my butt would be sore riding in that seat all day bumping over rough prairie." Of course, they didn't put up nearly the amount of hay we do these days, but golly jee-wiz, would you have butt calluses or what?

I've been laying low this past week and a half and haven't got my turn in the hay field yet.  I'm chomping-at-the-bit to go back to work, but I've been "put out to pasture" for the moment.  I turned up with shingles and have been taking it easy and trying to get myself well.  Let's just say my butt would be sore bouncing on a modern cushy seat all day.  That's all I'm gonna say about it.  I AM improving though, and I give thanks to God for people who promote using supplements and natural remedies that work.

For a splash of summer color, here is a snapshot of my moss roses.  Gosh I love these pretty li'l flowers!  They just love the sunshine and knock themselves out making the garden pots a riot of beautiful color.

All the worrying and fretting we did back in March, April, and up to May about another drought situation was all for naught.  Now it's a new story. We're happily making hay and giving thanks to God who has dealt bountifully with us.

"Return to your rest, O my soul, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you...."  ~Psalm 116:7


  1. Oh I hope you feel better soon....seems to be a more common deal these days......

  2. Well there's a lot here to say hooray to. I am sorry to hear about the shingles. I'm glad you have some remedies that are working for you. Hope it resolves real soon...

  3. That looks like some amazing hay. Hope you get feeling better.

  4. Thank you for such a wonderful blog. I always look forward to reading "A Ranchwife's Journal" ... I do hope you start feeling better ~ Shingles are no fun.

  5. Isn't all the rain this year wonderful? (Although, the mosquitos aren't, but you take the bad with the good I guess.) So much better than the drought last year! I'm so sorry to hear that you're not feeling well -- I hope you'll feel better soon!

  6. So sorry about the shingles, Jody, but so glad that God has blessed you with lovely weather, adequate rain, and hopefully a bountiful crop! Lovely pics.

  7. Oh my goodness, Jody! I'm praying for you!
    Get well, good soldier.

  8. Are moss roses the same as portulaca? I used to love those, too, at our former abode, where they did beautifully as long as the sun was hot.

    Shingles! You poor dear - I know from friends and family how awful that can be, and I got a shingles vaccination just so I didn't have to be in fear of it happening to me.

    1. Yes, Gretchen Joanna, portulaca is the same thing.
      From what I've been reading about shingles, even with the vaccine, you have a 50-50 chance of getting them, but generally the pain/symptoms are less severe.

  9. Your flowers are so pretty...I don't know about
    hay being pretty, but sure looks like you are all
    very busy this time of year! It is always amazing to
    me how our grandparents and great grandparents
    made it through everyday life with the tools and
    machines they had to work with....I guess we are quite
    spoiled today with all our modern stuff. I'm so sorry
    to hear about your shingles.....I hope and pray
    you will be over them soon......Corinne

  10. I have very fond memories of riding on my grandpa's tractor while he cut, raked, and baled hay. I'd help throw the small bales up onto the truck when I was old enough then watch as the men would back the truck up to the barn and throw the bales up into the hay loft. And then when it got cold, I'd make a nest in those bales and read and read. The best times were when the rain would be beating down on the tin roof of the barn, but I'd be all snug and warm in the hay.

  11. Oh, I've heard the shingles are very painful. I am so sorry. The first picture really brings home what a big job the haying must be. I hope you are totally well very soon.

  12. I love moss roses too and plant them every year. They deliver the pretty pastels don't they!

  13. We're in the hay season here too; long days and rough rides over armadillo holes. We don't have such vast fields as you; our fields are bordered on the sides by woods and thickets.

    The old rake is like the one my daddy used with horses. Then when he traded the horses for a little John Deere tractor, I drove the tractor, hitched to the rake, and my cousin rode the rake. That was one of the times I remember almost getting too hot.

    Love your farming stories.


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