February 20th

Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

Seven and one half inches later, the system has officially moved through.

I love a good snowstorm, especially when I can plan for it and not have to leave my house. Today’s storm was nearly perfect; little wind, large fluffy flakes, and even amounts throughout the day. I was able to go out and shovel out the chicken’s run periodically throughout the day and keep up on it which is always helpful.

Even still, having a driveway a third of a mile long is close to impossible to shovel.

Luckily, I have a super neat dad that brings his tractor over to plow us out. With the amount of snow over the past few weeks, dad loaded the blower on the back of the tractor to try and throw the snow out into the fields surrounding our house (and theirs) to help keep our snow piles at a manageable size.

Thanks, dad!

August 6th

Monday, August 6th, 2018

Todays image is edgier than my normal style, but it’s a fun change!

My dad gifted Paul this tractor after we got married. It doesn’t run, but is in great shape, just needs some minor engine work. However, after talking with our friend, Tanner, Paul is hoping to completely restore it.

So today, Paul pulled it out and washed it down.

When I saw the spray from the pressure washer, I came running with my camera. I grabbed my wide angle knowing it would help give me a funky look, and it did what I was hoping!

August 4th

Saturday, August 4th, 2018

Smalls towns can get a bad rap, but I love this one.

Paul and I live in the very far corner of Rogers, the side that borders Corcoran and Hanover. When I tell people we live in Rogers, they automatically think the interstate side of town, so it never fails that I have to explain that we live in old Hassan Township, the “still rural” side of Rogers.

We live in an area that is serviced by a few school districts – Elk River (Rogers), STMA, and Buffalo. I completed kindergarten at Rogers Elementary, in the Elk River school system, but after that my parents open-enrolled my sisters and me in the Buffalo school district. The closest elementary school was Hanover, so that is where we went.

Although it is growing, Hanover is a small town of less than 1,500 people. No grocery store, no movie theater, no auto mechanics. Just a school, gas station, a couple restaurants, liquor store, some miscellaneous small businesses, post office, and 3+ churches.

So every summer, when they host the Hanover Harvest Festival (always the first Saturday in August), Paul and I always try to attend.

This year, our friends Tanner and Christine (by wifely default 😉 ), were a part of the lawn tractor pull event. I had never watched such an event, and was super intrigued, so we wouldn’t have missed it!

Tanner isn’t pictured here (I evidently was too busy cheering when Tanner would pull), but one contestant is hooking up, while another waits in line for their turn.

It was really fun to watch, and it added to the charm of the harvest fest for me. Small town, Minnesota, USA. Where the beer is sold out of the back of a Gator, the kids play on a pile of dirt (See the kid standing on top behind the crowd?), the local farming families wear matching shirts, and we soup up lawn tractors to pull a bob sled.

That makes some people roll their eyes I suppose, but I love it.

July 10th

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

My dad was my super hero today.

I hadn’t been home for long this afternoon when my dad pulled up with the tractor. I knew he had taken the day off today, but was puzzled by why he came over with the tractor.

Paul had tried to till our pumpkin patch over the weekend, but we could only do half the rows because of how wet the field still was. He has been on a trip this week, so he hasn’t been home to finish the rest of the rows now that the field is dry enough. While he comes home tomorrow, and could’ve easily done it then, our window for tilling between rows is closing rapidly. Our plants are flourishing and beginning to vine out. Once they do that, we can’t get between the rows anymore.

The goal is to get in the field right before vining, so that all of the weeds get chopped up, making a clean row for pumpkins to expand into. It also eliminates competition for water and soil nutrients for the pumpkin plants. It also helps make the field look cleaner too.

Dad had just finished tilling our outdoor arena, and was going to finish tilling the pumpkin field for us.

On his day off, he came to help us check this task off our list.

So I ran the rows and moved plants that had already started to vine out while he tilled. It only took us about an hour, but that hour will help tremendously with weed control and pumpkin yield.

If you’re reading this, thank you Dad! I love you!

June 15th

Friday, June 15th, 2018

We were up with the sun today to beat the heat.

With a heat advisory that started at one this afternoon, and a field full of pumpkins to till, we wanted to be done as soon as possible.

When I took this picture, we were about three quarters done when the tiller needed a break to cool down. We walked up to the house for a water break, and looked back. The three acre field doesn’t seem that big until you see the tractor out in it.

June 10th

Sunday, June 10th, 2018

You know it’s summer time when the hay equipment comes out.

It’s between that and when the hundreds of barn swallows hatch their babies. But really, over thirty nests under this overhang alone. We’ve had a crazy amount of them around this year.

Anyway, it’s hay season! Even with the questionable weather tomorrow, the haybine went out today. Hopefully we don’t get as much rain as they’re saying we may get. After tomorrow, the weather looks great – sunshine with low dew points, so if we can get through tomorrow we’ll be golden.

Dad cut most of the field yesterday, but Paul finished the inside rounds. Here, Paul and Dad are switching places.

On an unrelated note, my phone died on Friday, so I finally upgraded (iPhone 5s to 8), and the camera clarity is awesome! Both this image and the image from Joyful Noise were taken on my phone.

Sometimes it’s the little things 🙂

May 13th

Sunday, May 13th, 2018

I know I said I’d start limiting the personal images, but it was dusty today.

If you live, or have lived, anywhere with a clay-based outdoor riding arena, you understand the significance of that statement. Our arena is like a sponge; it holds water like crazy. The past couple of summers it’s been so wet that we haven’t gotten much riding time, so the dust is a welcome change.

It was our first “big ride” of the year, and it was so lovely! The boys were SO GOOD, and we all enjoyed ourselves. If you remember from last summer, we had been having a lot of trouble with Junior being sore, and we weren’t sure where it was originating. It made for a frustrated horse, and even more frustrated humans. It made rides stressful, and they almost always ended in a fight.

Our farrier suggested that he had sore stifles (they are the same as knees in humans), and that physical therapy or chiropractic work could help alleviate the stiffness. We worked on physical therapy at home on our own, with very little luck, and we were having some trouble getting an appointment with a highly recommended chiropractor suggested to us by trusted friends, so for the interim we took the leap and put him on an MSM supplement (a joint anti-inflammatory) to see if that would give him any relief.

A few weeks later, and he’s moving like an entirely different horse.

He couldn’t hold a trot for more than four or five strides last summer, and today he trotted a full lap around our outdoor (both directions!) with no issues. He was fluid and balanced, driving from his back end, his headset was so much lower (showing his comfort level), and he was excited to move out. He was more willing to flex both directions, and he wasn’t chewing his bit nearly as aggressively as he had last summer.

I felt like crying, if we’re being honest.

It was Paul’s best ride with him yet, and that was so encouraging.