RicelandMeadows


November Snowstorm
November 13, 2019, 11:50 am
Filed under: November 2019 | Tags: , ,

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November 13, 2019

I snapped this photo about noon yesterday. The snow fell at a rate of  over two inches and hour. The storm total for us was 15 inches. That is a pretty good smack of snow, especially this early in the season!

I am actually fairly pleased with myself. Most of the stuff that needed to be done to prepare for winter had been completed. I knew we would get snow soon, I just didn’t expect this much! I had to rush to get feed to the grazing cattle and sheep, because the grass is buried deep under the now melting snow.

The weather is supposed to be cool but very nice for the next ten days. I hope to continue getting our autumn work completed. The corn harvest is still not complete. That job will take much of my focus in the coming days.

After the storm passed, just before sunset, the sun came out and reflected off the snow covered tree branches and the landscape as well. It was a beautiful sight. Winter is bearing down on us. We are almost ready, but in the meantime I will enjoy the beauty that comes with the snow. It is much better to work with Mother Nature and not get upset with her…you can’t change anything anyway.



Writing for Others or Why I do This

Me book 005

November 12, 2019

It is my hope that the things I write, the stories I share and the tales I tell, will help someone.

I hope that someone looking for release from a busy world and busy life, will find a pause and a peace as they read about me and mine. I hope that I can brighten someone’s day, if only for a few minutes. I hope folks looking for information will also find value in this small farming BLOG.

My book, pictured in the photo above, has been well received by many. In the book are many stories from my life growing up in the country and surrounded by farm animals. The stories will make you laugh, as well as, tug at your heart strings. It is written for all audiences and will warm hearts and stir memories in the reader’s mind.

We make movies here for RFD-TV. Several episodes can be found on YouTube. Just type Riceland Meadows into the search bar. I believe there are now 7 shows there. “Rural Heritage” films, edits and promotes my farm in these videos. Again, it is my hope that I can help someone in their quest for information on small farming, draft horses and a host of other topics.

I write for Rural Heritage magazine. I have been writing for them since 2002. I write some “feel good” stuff, but also many ” how-to” articles. I try my best to detail the subject with enough information, based upon my experience, to encourage someone to try it for themselves.

I trust that folks who follow my BLOG have found information, entertainment, and a feeling of well being as they read my words. I thank all of you for following along. The holidays are coming up. If you would like to gift a copy of my book to someone, I will waive the shipping cost for anyone in the continental United States until December 24, 2019. The cost of the book is 15.00 dollars (US) Email me at RicelandMeadows@roadrunner.Com

For copies of my book, my videos and others like it, you can also contact MischkaPress.com    Joe, Susan and Kelly are great people whom have helped me beyond words.

Thank you for following!



Autumn Curtain Call
November 9, 2019, 9:13 am
Filed under: November 2019 | Tags: , , ,

nov19sunset

November 9, 2019

Winter is pushing hard on us. Next week, they are forecasting overnight lows in the single digits and teens (F). The leaves are mostly off the trees and our growing season is over. I have a couple pastures of stockpiled grass for the sheep, but the cows and horses only have a few days of grazing left. I will be feeding hay very soon.

Our weather has been changeable, to say the least. One highlight is that our sunrises and sunsets have been beautiful. I have a breakdown with my corn picker. Thankfully, the parts are in route, so I may get to pick with it yet. So far, I am picking by hand. I like the job, but would have gotten an earlier start if I had realized that this was my option.

They are also predicting lake effect snow for us in the snowbelt for the coming week. It’s not a big deal, but it seems very early. When I was a boy, this weather was more the norm, but in the last few decades, our fall weather has been more warm and wet. I like winter, but I should have made better use of October!

Alas, it will all work out. The weather will be what it will be. The corn will get picked and the animals will come to the barn. Chores will increase as outside work slows down. In the meantime, I will take a little more time to enjoy the beautiful show each morning and evening, as Autumn bows out.



Diamond in the Rough
November 2, 2019, 4:08 pm
Filed under: November 2019 | Tags: , , , ,

pidcockwagon1

November 2, 2019

I recently bought this wagon. I realized that after having sold my old hay wagon with our small baler, I didn’t have a way to give my grandchildren and others a hay ride. A friend bought this wagon at a benefit auction. He didn’t need the wagon himself, but wanted to help the cause of the benefit auction. He offered the wagon to me.

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It is a good wagon, built by Pioneer Equipment in Kidron, Ohio. I could see a diamond in the rough.

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I traded the steel wheels, along with a little money, in exchange for these rims and tires. We shortened and narrowed the bed of the wagon. This makes for a nice handy size for all sorts of jobs around the farm. It now measures eleven feet long by six and one half feet wide. It has spring bolsters over the axles for a smooth ride.

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A new steel tongue replaced the wooden one. A little fresh paint increased her eye appeal. The side boards come in handy when picking corn or hauling split firewood. The wagon bed was built from treated lumber, the paint will enhance the lifetime of the wood. We replaced a couple bearings, greased the wheels and auto steering and went over the whole thing to ensure that it is sound and safe.

This “new to me” farm wagon will be fun to use, especially when giving hayrides. It will do many other jobs too. I am glad to have it in our equipment line up. I appreciate my friend for selling it to me at his cost. The wagon, like him, are diamonds in the rough.



Fall, Friends, and Field Trips
October 27, 2019, 2:36 pm
Filed under: October 2019 | Tags: , , , ,

fallsugar2019

October 27, 2019

In this blurry picture of our sugarhouse, you can see the autumn leaves. The color was late in coming this year, but after a couple hard frosts, the trees draped themselves in wonderful colors. I shot this picture on a cool morning at sunrise. Autumn has arrived!

I have just begun to pick our field corn crop. It needed a bit more drying, but now is ready to harvest. We had a rainy weekend, that made me rest and reset. I guess it’s sometimes good for all of us to just be still.

I managed to attend two major draft horse sales in our area. The Lake Erie Draft Colt Sale in Burton, Ohio was the first. The three-year-old filly in the picture below, brought over $6000.00. Great sale, good horses and cool weather.

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Then last Thursday and Friday, I attended the Buckeye Draft Horse sale in Dover, Ohio. I hauled horses and friends as we supported the sale. There were many nice horses to feast your eyes upon. They came in all colors, shapes and sizes. A weanling Percheron filly sold for $24,000.00 in Dover, topping the sale!

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I also visited a friend in southern Ohio last week, who owns this chunky Suffolk Stallion. He is a great horse with a quiet disposition. I had gone to see his owner, because I bought a wagon from him. I plan to convert the old hay wagon into a hayride wagon for the farm.

Corn picking is on my mind and will fill my days in the near future. In the meantime, it was nice to enjoy the autumn splendor, in the company of friends and good draft horses.



The End to a Perfect Day
October 16, 2019, 11:36 am
Filed under: October 2019 | Tags: , , , ,

sunset101519

October 16, 2019

First I should clarify, any day is a good day. Each day we are given the opportunity to reach for our goals, strive for excellence and share our light with the world. It is a choice to be happy, so smile, be kind and give of yourself to others. This positive attitude towards life, will make every day better. Sometimes, you may be the only positive thing others will see that day. You may uplift someone else, by simply smiling, now that my friends, is power!

I have been working on many projects as autumn is making itself known. It’s that last dash of preparation before winter slows down and even stops some outside activities. My biggest push right now, is to get the field corn harvested. The picker is ready to go. The crib needs emptied of the last of last year’s corn. A good clean out, fix a slat or two and the crib will be ready to receive the new crop.

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Abby managed to lose her front shoe. So, yesterday, we ran to get one nailed on. You can’t pick corn with a flat tire on your tractor…or a missing shoe on your draft horse! She was all fixed up in the space of ten minutes. Abby and the geldings are ready and waiting for the corn harvest to begin. The corn is almost dry enough. The last two mornings of hard frost, will help in that effort too.

So, after a day of preparing for winter, equine pedicures and a beautiful sunset, I would say that it is the end to a perfect day.



Feeling Good
October 8, 2019, 2:26 pm
Filed under: October 2019, Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

mary20191stbaby

October 8, 2019

Our weather has been nice. My work list is getting completed. Autumn is making itself known. Our last cow had her calf and things are good. We finished filling the sugarhouse woodshed yesterday. I even delivered a load of firewood for a birthday present.

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I am a little sore today from doing unaccustomed work….I haven’t had this in a long time. Oh sure, do too many sit-ups or ride a horse…and I feel that the next few days, but holy cow!  When did a little extra work start to make my old muscles stiff and sore? This aging stuff is for the birds, but all in all…I feel good!

Honestly, how could a guy not feel good. I’m surrounded by family, friends, great draft horses and farm animals. Sure there is work that comes with those things. Work that is well worth the effort! Heck with feeling good… I feel great!