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  • Writer's pictureConstance Wilmoth

Hard Work & Sweat!

I asked my husband yesterday why the summer seems so short and the winter seems so long, and after thinking about it, I realized it was because we try to do all the activities we think up during the winter time and also prepare for the winter during the summer. We have recently had a stretch where it hardly felt like there was time to breathe. Between, both of our full time jobs, the farm and my husband's side job, we just felt like we were running ourselves absolutely ragged. To top it all off, my hay farmer called last week and said that our hay was ready. Thankfully, he loads it on his flat bed trailer, and backs it into a garage for us. This gives us some flexibility as to when we go to get it.This weekend, although we deliberately scheduled no physical work, we were still very busy. We had my parents visit on Friday, Saturday we had a friend's baby's birthday party and Sunday my college friends came to visit and we went to a local park to go horseback riding and we had a cookout at our house. This meant that Monday afternoon is dedicated as hay day.

For anyone that is not familiar we try to buy all of our hay in one fell swoop, not only does this help us to ensure we have enough hay stored before the nasty winter weather, but it also allows us to take advantage of lower prices when hay is plentiful. I cleaned out the barn Monday morning and worked until 1 PM, when we headed the 30 minutes to the hay farm, we added a few straps, bought some produce and headed on our way home. We went extra slow, because we had an issue last year where half of the side of the hay almost fell off of the wagon and we needed to add straps to hold it all in place. So this year I watched our mirrors like a hawk and as soon as we got off the freeway, I saw the hay stop bouncing, Rob was looking for a place to pull over, and before we could pull over we had about 6 bales fly off of the trailer. We pulled over and ran to get the bales out of the road way and then formulated a plan.We had one set of tiny red ratchet straps that we did not use because we did not think it would be helpful. We grabbed the hay from the side of the road, restacked it and Rob climbed on top of the hay to tie the rachet straps together and I racheted it down, along with tightening the other rachet straps on the hay. We hopped back in the truck and said a prayer that they hay would all stay in tact as we crept the remaining 5 miles home.

We arrived home and celebrated that the load stayed in tact and Rob tackled the next task of turning the massive load around and backing it up to our barn. Once we got the load in place we fired up the tractor that we use as our personal hay elevator, and started the task of playing tetris to see how many bales we could fit onto our tractor bucket. Rob's high number was 15! The sky began to look a little dark and we got concerned, so we wanted to condense the load in case we needed to cover it with a tarp. As we removed the bottom layer of hay, Rob fell through the bottom of the hay trailer! I screamed and tried to grab him. Thankfully, he only lost his shoe and scraped his leg, but the old rotten wood on the trailer gave way as he walked across it. Being the trooper he is he got back up, as I retrieved

his shoe and continued to work! After an afternoon of work we were able to get the hay all in the barn for the winter and the trailer back to the hay farmer. It is hard exhausting work, but I appreciate the hay and security it provides us and our animals throughout the rest of the year! Have a wonderful week, and Happy Goating!

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