Friday, October 9, 2015

A week in review

A lot has happened since the phone call from Bruce one week ago about the combine fire, we've spent a lot of money, traveled a lot of miles, and sweated bullets trying to retrofit our aging cornhead to fit the beautiful new combine.

Kind of looks like poor relation mounted on it but it works well.

But first news from the coop, the Serama romantic triangle turned into the band of four when the little hen from last year joined Larry the third and his two women on their high perch. Larry took to her.

"Hey, Sweet Thing!"

But the girls did not put up with that and the next night, she was kicked back to the outside.

"Beat it, hussy!"

Monday morning, with Grassy's help, Bruce and I started the weaning process by inserting the plastic, Quiet Wean, tags into the calves noses.

"This really sucks!"

They do not appreciate the hard yellow plastic tags that prevent them from nursing, cutting the bond between their mothers.

They huff and puff and toss their head, but the tags stay put.

I bought hunting vests for the dogs to try and control the amount of number of stick tights and burdock that ends up lodged in their coats. Mollie was not sure she liked it but Murphy took to her's right away, raising her paws when I bring them out, ready to get dressed. I was just sorry they didn't have pink camo for my girls, but I did get them from a Hunting Dog website, I guess hunters don't go for such foolishness.

We finally got the new combine home from Tom's Repair late Tuesday afternoon, with only 2 1/2 rounds of beans at the Ehlers farm, Bruce was anxious to finish. But it was a learning experience as this combine has so many more bells and whistles. I was in the companion seat trying to make sense of the huge book with Bruce asking me what 'this' and 'that', pointing to monitors on the control panel.

I didn't end up being a lot of help but I was there for moral support as he figured out all the icons and finished the field.

Bruce had to retrofit the combine to the corn head, it was another trip to ICON at Paullina and shelled out more $$$$$ for a magic box of everything he needed. If it was only that easy. Nothing fit, Bruce cut and drilled, welded and screwed, bolting things on and taking things off to refit. I again wasn't much help, I could hold stuff but I was mainly there for moral support.

I don't know how he figured it all out but late in the evening, just as it was getting dark, the worst was over. Bruce quit for the night and finished the odds and ends on Thursday morning and soon it was ready for the maiden voyage!!

Excitement abounds!!

It works!!!

Great joy spread throughout the Kingdom!!

What a beautiful machine!

My farmer loves his new machine.

It gobbles up the corn....

....but where deer trampled wide swathes, it still plugged up.

Darn deer!

It's fun to sit in the seat and see the corn pour into the bin through the back window.

Bruce's good buddy, Grassy, showed up to help, he kept me from having to run to try and keep up. He also had an update on all the rumors flying around, one that made us laugh was that the "Deal fell through, Bruce didn't get the combine!" We have no idea where that would have come from but that is small town living, everyone knows your business. That can also be a blessing so we don't take offense.

Our neighboring farmers moved into their corn field and when I looked at our field with the three of us, a combine, two tractors and five wagons, I thought we were just like the Pruntys.

Except that they had two combines, two semis and two big grain carts, other than that we were exactly alike.

We filled the drying bin in one short day, actually we overfilled the bin and had to take some out, I guess I better keep a closer eye on it from now on, Bruce had to pull a wagon load back out but no one was hurt. It was time to head home for a shower and a bite to eat before bed.

I shut up the chicken house, my war on rats has either eradicated the scurvy vermin or greatly diminished them but I don't take any chances with the baby chicks. One little girl was peeking out from under her mother who was giving me the stink eye. 

I have started letting them free range in the afternoons when I decided I could trust Murphy. Last year she killed some of my chicks so I was very hesitant this year. She seems to have grown up a lot and pays absolutely no attention to them. Last year she got her butt paddled if I caught her in the coop but she has proved her worth with the rat infestation and has killed some in there. I've watched Murphy go in, check for rats, and come right back out.

It's a beautiful Friday afternoon, the sun is out, the sky is blue with puffy clouds, it's a great day to be a farmer. I had some errands to run so Grassy was called into service again. Don't tell Bruce but I'm getting a little spoiled. So I better get my work clothes out and head to the field, over and out!

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