Life of a Farm Blog

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Archive for June, 2007


Monday, June 11th, 2007

Another busy week here on the farm. Still no rain to speak of. We did get a small shower one evening, but it was barely enough to settle the dust. There has been rain all around us, but it seems to split and go around us. Most farmers in the area are reporting their hay crop as about half what it usually is. Ours was down a little, but not too much.

The 6000 has really earned it’s keep the past few weeks. It’s been going non stop except for having to replace the battery. That’s my fault, I have a bad habit of leaving the key on. I’ve run the battery dead 3 times that way. This last time did it in. I was pleasantly surprised that an almost exact replacement at Napa was only $74.95. I expected much worse. I’m hoping to find time to give the 6000 and hay roller a bath this week.

I’ve got to stay away from Tractor Supply Company. We went on Friday and before I got out of there I’d spent a thousand bucks. I’ve been wanting a toolbox and a fuel tank for the back of the truck. They had a one time offer on a combo for a little under $700 so I grabbed it. Also picked up a 12 volt pump and some halters for the horses.

Tractor Supply continues to add to their selection of John Deere merchandise. Garett jumped on the bandwagon with the girls and grabbed a shirt that reads “Can You Dig It” and has the Deere logo on it. Kaylee found the best one yet though. Her new one is pink and says “Silly Boys, John Deeres Are For Girls”. I here that Mahindra will be releasing some new T shirts, including some for kids, soon.

BJ and the kids helped me give the truck a bath this week. It’s funny they call the truck “old blue”. We are still wrestling with whether we should replace old blue or just keep it going. I need to spend at least a thousand on the truck to get it back in shape. I’m tired of being without a CD player and air conditioning and wonder if the money wouldn’t be better spent on a down payment on something newer.

We are still shopping for a good square baler and tossing around what’s best new or used, New Holland or Massey ferguson or Case IH, Inline or traditional. There are so many choices it’s unreal. I can see advantages in all. I located a used needle for the old IH 46. Cost including shipping will be $70. I guess I’ll go ahead and order it.

Last night was rodeo night here. They had it at the South Ky Horseman’s Arena in Strunk Ky. It was a different promoter this year and I was very dissapointed. While the bulls were better, the promoter doesn’t have a clue what the environment is supposed to be like at a rodeo. There was no clown, they played nothing but rock and roll music, and the anouncer didn’t introduce the riders before or during their ride. Add to that the fact that the whole thing was in about a 20 ft circle and well it just wasn’t very exciting. They did keep telling us all about the sponsors though. At least the girls and John Thomas had a good time. Garett had a stomach ache so he stayed home with my mom.

The excavator continues to clear land. It kind of makes me sad to think that this beautiful land that I’ve dreamed of having as pasture someday is going to have a commercial chickenhouse on it. My dad keeps telling me not to get discouraged that the income will allow us to buy even more land. We picked up a couple acres of land that we will need to widen the county road this week. That means more work for me. The land had 2 trailers on it, but one was in too bad of shape to salvage. The other we plan to rent to Alan who shoes my horses and give him a job in the chickenhouses. That means we’ve got to get it in shape.

Well I better get at it……lots to do…… be sure to check out the pics I’ve added to the site. Thanks for reading and check back soon!

Excavation Begins

Wednesday, June 6th, 2007

All the kids and animals seem to standing the heat. It has been several days since a drop of rain. This is the first year I can remember being able to get a substantial amount of the hay done so early. The hay has cost me though. I dropped the wheel of the old IH square baler into a hole causing the needles to come up into the bale chamber and bend one. I had high hopes of getting a bunch of square bales, but just my luck. Seems if the weather cooperates the equipment doesn’t. I’m hoping to find a needle used and save the old baler. Wouldn’t make a lot of sense to put much money in the old baler given it’s value. Gonna have to buy some blades for the disc mower too. I’ve got one broken and a couple more bent. I guess it could be a lot worse, but it sure gets me down having to work on this stuff. We got a lot accomplished around the farm in addition to the hay. I replaced the hinges that were broken on the doors to the barn. It’s so much easier with the pallet forks and the 6000. I used to have to block and jack the doors up, but with the 6000 4wd I can just get the forks under the door and lift it into place. Then I just put the bolts back in the new hinges.

I’m not crazy about this heat, but at least the garden is starting to produce. We’ve gotten several pickings of brocolli, onions, and lettuce. I’m sure there are some small potatoes there, but we haven’t gotten any yet. We finally got the corn and beans out this week too. It won’t be long until we’ll be able to have a “find me” dinner. We started calling a dinner completely from the garden a “find me” about 3 years ago after I got hurt at Kingsford. Some people working about 15 ft above me dropped a pry bar on my back. We literally lived out of the garden for about a month. That’s when I figured out just how badly folks who work for Clorox/Kingsford need a union. I was out of work for over a month and the company treated me really badly. In fact the HR Manager tried to tell me it wasn’t workers compensation. No one from the company called to check on me, but the union called at least weekly and stood up to the company to get things right. On a sad note I noticed a press release from Clorox last week saying they will be closing 2 plants. Both the Jackson Mississippi plant and the Cleveland Ohio plants will close. As usual with Clorox, both these plants are union as was the Glad plant they closed last year. Seems they have a track record of closing the union plants and moving the production to non union locations.

We finally got started on clearing some land this week. It will take several weeks to get it all done. The farm should be much more productive with the extra land though. I’d like to lease some more land next year too. The kids love to go watch the trackhoe and dozer. The size of the stumps is amazing. Just check out the pics. My dad wants to save a couple and try to make some bowls out of them.

We picked up the kids a Bonzai Falls to keep them occupied this summer. They haven’t slowed down since we aired it up. We have a wiffle ball game scheduled for when the sun goes down a little so I better go for now.

Be sure to check out the pics I’ve added to the site and thanks for reading!

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