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It Takes a Village

We’ve all used the saying “it is really hard to get good help” at least once. The day to day things on the farm really aren’t as time consuming as most people expect them to be. Everyone always wants to know how many people we have helping on a daily basis. It isn’t feeding the horses, scrubbing and filling troughs, putting on blankets, grooming, stall cleaning, or any of the day to day things that are particularly hard or time consuming. We have the daily routine down and get these things done thoroughly and efficiently. It is all of the non-routine things that are the killers. Like maintaining pastures, repairing fence boards, cutting and baling hay, servicing equipment, chain-sawing fallen trees . . . the list could go on. Really, the hands-on daily care of the horses is the easy part! I am really lucky that in addition to having help from my farmer extraordinaire husband Jason, my dad also helps us out a lot. He also happens to have some really nice equipment as well!

It is always a struggle to maintain the pastures as far as having the grass where you want it. It always seems there is either too much grass or not enough. I wish the horses were smart enough just to teach themselves to rotationally graze their pastures! My dad has been extremely helpful the last couple of weeks by bush hogging the pastures. It doesn’t seem like it would be such a hard thing, just sitting on the tractor, but really it is harder than you think. First of all the crick you get in your neck from constantly looking behind you to make sure all is well with the bush hog is no fun. Plus it is hot, you have an amazing amount of pollen and other allergens blowing around you, and the seat of a tractor isn’t exactly engineered for a smooth ride, so you get jarred around as you are driving along.

Dad pictured above returning from bush hogging one of the fieldsOf course Jason does his share of work on the tractor. Our schipperke Bear also likes to assist with anything involving heavy equipment:

They both look quite serious in that last picture, don’t they? If anyone ever has some extra time and wants to stop by with their chain saw, we will be happy to put you to work for a day cutting up some old trees. Really, it is quite fun to cut away at a huge tree, pile it all up, and have a big bonfire – especially when it is hot and humid!

Jason really wanted this to drive around on the farmJason and I visited the Space Center in Huntsville for a weekend trip a few months ago. He really wanted to turn the above-pictured moon buggy into a piece of farm equipment. He thought it would be really neat to zip around in the farm in it! I must say that I agree with him. Plus, we would be the only people on our block that had one! Oh well, I guess we are stuck with our tractors and chain saws.

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