Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Down on the Farm

There's nothing better than watching hot, sweaty farmers bale straw. So that's just what we did yesterday. The kids and I sat comfortably in the Gator (much to the Boy's dismay) sipping ice water and taking pictures.

The straw has already been harvested, as you can see. Now the tractor comes through the wind rows to make square bales. They used to have to throw the bales onto a wagon at this point. They've since gotten all fancy and have a little machine that arranges the bales into a tidy square and drops them onto the field, waiting to be picked up.

Here are the kids standing on one of the bale clusters. Right after this shot, the loader came screaming at us to pick this pile up. I've never seen Little Miss move so fast in her life to get back on my lap.

Next comes the empty wagon for the bales to be stacked. This is the part that used to be the most labor intensive (or so I hear.)

But thanks to this little contraption, the bales are easily picked up. The black thing on the loader has spikey grabbers (that is a technical term by the way) that curl into the bales to pick the bales up in a clump and set them on the wagon.

Now the tractor drives the wagon to the barn and the grabber puts them up into the hayloft where 5 VERY hot and VERY sweaty men stack them into place.

Meanwhile, the kids are busy feeding the cows. Yes, Little Miss is in the trough. No, she is not the food.

Notice the pink dress and flip flops. Always the fashionista...even when leaning on manure covered fences.

Here is Tractor Boy in his element. Since he couldn't be involved in the bale work, tending to the cows is the next best thing.

Please note the sensible farm attire on the Boy. I love this shot.

After a long hot day in the hay loft, Farm Guy came home and immediately disrobed down to his underwear. Sorry, no picture. I retired to the computer and went a little Scrapblog crazy.

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Kat said...

Stupid blogger. Or is it stupid beach internet? But I cannot see pictures today...

Rene said...

Those kids are so dern cute!! (Kat the pics really are awesome so you gotta find a different internet!)

Kat said...'s working, it's working. Great pictures. A farm is so very far away from my reality. And I think it might be far away from Little Miss' as well.

And the things you are creating on scrapblog...what do you do with them? Are you making a book? Do you print them? I haven't ventured over there yet. I need to do another scrapbook giveaway.

Rachelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shelle said...

okay seriously...your little girl, I just want to wrap her up and munch on her! She is TOO adorable. Your header with both of your kids is darling also!

I sometimes wish that I could spend sometime on a farm...just because it seems surreal and so peaceful...even thought I KNOW in the back of my head that it is A LOT of hard work! :)

Kate said...

I moved to South Dakota about four years ago, and much to my dismay, have not been invited to watch such a thing as hay baling until this year. My co-worker's husband farms and this fall, I GET TO HELP HARVEST! Her children roll their eyes at me when I jump up and down over it, but that's just because they grew up with it. I'm so excited and what a life to give to your kids. So precious.

Amanda said...

Your blog makes me long for my country roots. I just love your pictures. Beautiful.

Mrs4444 said...

OMGosh-LOVE those photos (and captions)! I also appreciate the blow by blow explanation. I think it's interesting.

Mrs. Parks said...

I love this, and the pictures are the BEST!

Karen said...

Great photos!!!

Brings back memories of hay baling on my Uncle's farm in NZ.

All us older kids used to get pressed into service and yes, it used to be the most labour intensive part of the whole process.

Those bales weigh a ton, or so it seemed at the time. I developed nicely shaped arms, though!!

Insane Mama said...

I remember baling hay on the farm, it was always hard, sweaty work! But also fun!

Merrie said...

I've only climbed all over bales of hay...never seen them made. Nice pictures! Gorgeous children, and I too love the one of your son on the fence. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I love all the pictures....makes me want to bail some hay. Ok, not really....but I'll tend to the cows. :)

scargosun said...

I LOVE the smell of freshly dried hay!

Minyo said...

Brings back memories. I think that new contraption that stacks and picks up the bales in the field is cool. The only times I was ever required to help on the farm was hay baling time. Also makes me think of bologna sandwiches and men with sweaty arms with hay stuck to them.

My favorite smells in the world are freshly mown hay and freshly baled hay.

I love all your pictures, too. Especially the one of your son chatting with cows...they look so intrigued with him.

Danette said...

Great pictures, but where are the beautiful, shiney, green tractors??

John Deere Mom said...

Kat-I haven't done anything more with them than save them to the computer. I am going to try printing them. I will let you know how it goes!

Shelle-You should spend time on the farm like I my flip flops on the Gator watching other people work. It's great!

Kate-You are too funny! I hope it's everything you think it will be! What else do they grow up there in SD?

Amanda-Thanks! And I long for that Starbucks you're least it looks like Starbucks from here.

Danette-I am surprised you are the first person to ask that! The yellow tractor is a John Deere 410. The big tractor is an Allis husband's first love. The 2 main tractors on the farm are OLD Allis Chalmers that his uncle owns. I swear everything else is JD!

Thanks to everyone else for the comments! It is fun to watch the guys work and the kids LOVE it. I also love the smell of freshly cut grass and hay. And one of the best, sweetest smells that I only learned since moving here is the smell of the corn when it is pollinating.

Tiffany said...

Okay, I need to come visit. Between the girl and the farm guys, you are my dream vacation. We can go cow tipppin' and chunky dunkin'.

Rhea said...

corn heads. lol

I'd have run too if a big farm machinery thingy was coming at me.

I love hearing how things work on your farm, thanks for sharing!

I love hay bales. I can remember my dad unloading them for our horses when I was younger. Nice memories.

Love all the pictures, especially the kids.

Mama Dawg said...

Those kids are cute. I've never been on a working farm before. I'd love to.

LINDA said...

I remember the days of old -fashioned baling. So does my DH.
Your scrap pages are adorable.
Where is the Cheeseburger in Paradise?
Great yard sale finds. Goodwill is my favorite place to shop.
My daughter does Redbox so I will for ward info to her. Thanks.
If your little Miss gets any cuter, you'll have to follow her everywhere!

Finding Normal said...

I'm so glad I didn't have to see your hubby in his undies. You had me worried there for a second!
Cute kid pics! Love Miss' outfit and love Boy's almost-crack. LOL