July 27, 2011

Storm update and Snakes

I have no pictures today. I had one on Malcolm's cell phone actually, but he took it with him to the hay field and I dont' want to wait to post b/c then I might not post at all!

Sunday evening it had finally died out enough that we could go work on the hay again. Up until that point I'd spent the days at home, running lunch to Malcolm and his Dad. But thanks to Friday night storm, I found a job!
Being that I'm the only one who doesn't know how to run the tractors, I volunteered for pitch fork duty. And so, since Sunday night, I've been picking hay out of fences with a pitch fork.

We heard, through the neighborhood grape vine, that Friday's storm dropped a tornado over there by the hay fields! So that would explain the horrendous wind, the downed tree branches, the wagon rolling across the yard....
...I think we were lucky!

And then yesterday we found out that the neighbors about a mile or so down the road got hailed out. Lost their corn and wheat, and their silage bags are all busted up. They're out there tying to patch them in time to save the silage. What a mess!

Given that, and then being reminded by my blogger buddies about the horrible drought conditions in Texas (and other places too) I feel kind of bad for complaining about our hay issues! It might have been spread hither and yon, but we still had a lot of it once it was gathered back up! It could have been a lot worse.

My mother-in-law, Peggy,  ran the tractor with the rake to gather it back into windrows for baling while I used a pitch fork to pull it out of the fences, and often had to crawl across the fence to drag back huge armloads of hay from neighboring pastures. We wouldn't have bothered except it was an aweful lot of hay. We finally finished cleaning it all up on Monday afternoon.

Peggy and I left the guys to continue swathing and baling while we ran to town to get some groceries. When we left the fields, there were more storm clouds gathering in the southwest. And about an hour after we left, Malcolm called me on the cell phone to tell me he and his dad had just sat in the tractors and watched the storm blow all the newly mown hay all over the place and into the fences. I told him Peggy and I were just going to keep going on past town, maybe to Great Falls or somewhere, and to call us when haying was over.

So, Tuesday evening, around 4:30, after it had had some time to dry out again, back to the hayfields I went, pitch fork in hand! It actually wasn't as bad as last time and I was able to finish picking it out last night. Peggy had to go back and rake some more today, but I got to stay home with the girls and relax.

Thank you for all the comments! I've gathered quite a few new friends since Danni at Critter Farm posted about meeting me. Normally I've been trying to reply to each comment, but due to being gone all day, and tired at night, they've gotten away from me! So I won't be able to get back in touch with everyone, but I appreciate the comments, the encouragment, and all.
Just a few responses:
Several people commented on how bad it is in Texas. Believe me they do not exagerate! We've driven through Texas several times in the last few months, and recently too. Its really bad! I hurt for all the ranchers (and everyone else too) that are having to deal with the heat and drought! And it has made me apprecaite all the more our blessings. Our hay may be scattered, but we have lots of it!

Someone asked what kind of dogs I have. They are Chinese Cresteds, and they are a hoot. If you click on the tab under my title that reads "The Girls" it will pull up all the posts that have pictures or events that the girls were involved in. I'm still working on my organization though. They enrich my life so much. I'd be lost without my girls!

The other night, Malcolm's dad killed a rattle snake out on the road. I swear it was as big around as my wrist, maybe bigger. I wish I'd thought to get my camera. He, of course, brought it home to show us. I think they measured it and it was around 41 inches. That was a huge snake, at least the biggest rattler I've seen so far!
And then today my Mom tells me, "you've got to go read my snake stories on my blog" because I was behind on keeping up with blogs, as seems to be my habbit lately! There are just too many good blogs to read and I can't get them all. But its pretty bad when you neglect your family's blogs! Anyway, so I'm passing on the message...
You have GOT to go to my mom's blog and read her snake stories! Here's the most recent, and here's her other one.


TexWisGirl said...

oh, i'm sorry to hear about your neighbor's damage and that you had to pitchfork the hay twice! but i like how you looked at the bright side of it too. (thanks for the Texas sympathy! truly!)

Louise said...

I'm glad that you were able to salvage as much of the hay as you have. It's been a terrible year, for everyone, and I know that you're tired. Bless you for keeping on, keeping on.

SunnySD said...

Ah, haying - can't say I miss it too terribly, except for the wonderful sweet smell. Not so much the hot sweaty WORK part :)

Glad to hear the damage was at least fairly limited and that you've been able to reclaim some of the hay crop. Seems like there's bad weather no matter where you look these days - which doesn't make it any easier when it and the consequences have settled where you're at!

Michaele said...

Glad you got some hay gathered after all. You are sure a multi-talented girl! A bite from a rattle snake that size is sure to kill. Heebee jeebees!

small farm girl said...

I would have just left the hay. You are a better girl than I am. hehehe. We are doing our hay right now too. As the saying goes, "Got to make hay while the sun shines."

MTWaggin said...

Oh yes, haying - such an adventure isn't it! So hot you don't want to be out in it but you MUST do it when it is hot and dry. Looks like it will be good weather the next few days. You are a trooper with the pitchfork for sure! I don't miss the rattlers (live up high enough they aren't much of an issue) but loved your Mom's stories. Give the girls hugs from the other MT cresteds.