Monday July 25, 2011
Oscar primarily did the morning feeding by himself. Chris came around 9:00 to help finish up. Jeremy hauled hogs for a friend to the Camden locker early this morning and picked up calf feed from Harvestland on his way back. We have tried many different brands of calf feed from different companies but we keep coming back to this one because the calves seem to grow best on it. We use about 500 pounds of this calf feed each week.
The local restaurant we frequent is closed for the week so the owner and workers can take a much-needed vacation, so the guys had lunch at Lee’s in Trenton.At Jeremy’s we finally finished hauling manure to clean out the barn and hauled some rock in preparation for pouring concrete in the barn. Jeremy just purchased this farm last summer and although we have made many improvements in the house and buildings, much more needs to be done.
Chris had to leave at 3:00 to get ready for fair tomorrow so Jeremy helped with the evening feeding.
Tuesday July 26, 2011
The swine show at the fair started at 8:00 so Jeremy had to be there bright and early since he is one of the adult advisors. Chris was showing hogs so he had to be there also. Brad was able to work today and is very flexible having been around farm work in the past. After the feeding was done, Oscar mowed grass and brought the no till soybean drill home from Jeremy’s. We had used the drill to plant soybeans as a second crop after the wheat was harvested. Now it needs to be cleaned out and serviced so it will be ready for the next use.
The tractor pull at the fair started at 1:00 so we left here about noon so we could get some of that junk fair food that we only get once a year! (I have a particular weakness for sugar waffles.) I had to leave to get a new cell phone, so I didn’t stay very long. Oscar watched the antique classes a while then came home to do the feeding. Brad came back to help.We left here around 7:30 to go back to the fair for the evening tractor pull hoping to watch Jeremy compete with the Case 1370 that he had overhauled and had been working on over the winter. We do not have a dedicated “pulling tractor.” The Case hauled manure one day and pulled a sled down the track the next. Unfortunately we did not get there in time. His class had already pulled by the time we took our seats. We did not realize it until an hour or so of head-splitting roar as tractor after tractor and truck after truck barreled their way down the track.
As we got out of the car when we returned home, we could hear the coyotes howling out back. It has been a while since we have heard them so clearly and so close. What an eerie sound!
Wednesday July 27, 2011
Chris was back to work today after showing hogs at the fair yesterday. Today was a “clean-up day”—lots of weed eating, mowing and bush hogging to stay ahead of the grass and weeds growing from the rain on Sunday. The corn has really taken off too.Chris cleaned out the no-till soybean drill and it was put away for the season.Today is the eleventh day in a row that the temperature has been above 90˚. It is really taking its toll on the cattle. One of the youngest ones died today. He was about 8 days old, and had showed no signs of being ill or stressed. He was fine, eating as normal in the morning and we found him dead at the evening feeding. I hope the heat wave breaks soon or we will have done lots of hot, grueling work taking care of the calves for no profit.
Thursday, July 28, 2011
I had to go into town for an appointment and left Oscar and Jeremy doing the feeding. When Chris arrived at 9:00 the three of them went to another farm to load corn from the grain bin onto a truck to bring home for feed. When they got to the farm, Jeremy went to the barn to get the augers out and discovered much to his dismay that they had been stolen. Augers are tubes with electric motors that move the grain up from the bin floor and into the truck. Who wants those old augers of ours? It wasn’t so much the value of them, but it was the inconvenience. We had to go to a friend and borrow his auger. Unfortunately his short auger could not reach to the floor of the bin, so the guys had to stand inside the metal bin and shovel a truckload of grain into the auger, which took it to the truck. Since it was in the 90’s outside, I imagine it was 120 in that bin. With the exertion of shoveling around 300 bushels of corn, it was dangerously hot.Jeremy had another meeting with landowners of one of the farms we rent about the sod waterways we hope to have built. All the paperwork is signed, sealed, and delivered and seems ready to go.We met with the crop adjuster from our insurance company today. Wheat is a dry weather crop and this spring was anything but dry. So the wheat crop was about half what we normally expect. The adjuster will go over the figures and the acreage and file a claim with the insurance company. It is insured for 80% of the average yield. So hopefully we will see a check from them soon.After lunch we hauled water to the various groups of cattle and made sure everything was fed. After the evening feeding here at home, Oscar and I took a ride to Preble County to check out the progress on our friends’ log home they are in the process of building. It is really looking good.I spent some of the day doing laundry and getting ready to leave for the beach. I leave tomorrow morning so this will be my last diary entry. I will be in a beach chair on Myrtle Beach for the next two weeks. Due to some poor planning, Jeremy will also be gone for several days next week. Oscar will be here to hold down the fort alone, but the fair will be over Saturday and he should be able to pick up some guys to help. Here’s hoping the string of 90˚ weather breaks while I am gone.