RicelandMeadows


Summer in Full Swing
June 20, 2021, 3:50 pm
Filed under: June 2021 | Tags: , , , ,

June 20, 2021

The other night, as I sat on the patio after a long work filled day, I was treated to this beautiful sunset. I sat a while soaking up the beauty. I thought of my middle sister who loved sunsets of all kinds. She has passed from this world now, but scenes like this often remind me of her. It is not a sad time for me, but rather a time of celebration, just to remember her.

I have been helping a farming friend. He has some very large equipment that chews up ground on a scale that amazes me. The other day, I sat down inside of one of the tractor tires for a short break.

I’m not much of a “selfie” guy, but you get the idea…these tractors are mammoth!

Our barn renovation is complete. Thanks to my dear wife, friends and family it went very well in spite of several delays waiting on materials as we built. It is a striking difference in the barn. The air flow and light found in the new stalls and even out into the old part of the barn, is wonderful. I am sure that we will enjoy it for years to come.

Pasture mowing and hay making is in full swing. The crops are growing quite well. Last night we received almost 2 inches of rain. Things are damp and humid on this Father’s Day, but a day of rest is welcomed.

So, as I enjoy this day off, I will reflect on the barn build, sisters and sunsets and the busy days of summer coming fast.



Autumn Bounty
November 3, 2020, 1:12 pm
Filed under: November 2020 | Tags: , , , , , ,
Yum

November 3, 2020

Autumn brings much bounty. The last of the harvest is gathered. I accidently tripped the breaker on our freezer, causing some chicken parts to thaw. We spent a day cooking chicken and making broth. The shredded chicken will be nice too, but I am sure that it wasn’t on my wife’s agenda for that day. Oops!

Our apple order came in last week. We are busy getting them put up. The eating part is wonderful, but I look forward to pies and applesauce. It makes for a few long days in the kitchen, but it is well worth it! I pitch in quite a bit. My wife even praises me, telling me she wonders how she ever got along without me…telling her how to do everything!

A few jars of pie filling hot off the stove

The deer are starting to move, as their breeding time is here. Hunting season is in full swing for archery. Hunters are bagging a few. We haven’t been out much, but we hope to get some venison for the freezer this fall.

We had a skiff of snow on the ground yesterday. My great grandpa called it “squaw winter” and now we should get some very nice “Indian summer” days. The days for putting the lawn and porch furniture away, rolling up hoses and tipping unused water troughs over. All in preparation for the coming winter.

We have had a very rainy period. We got 7.25 inches of rain in 15 days. We are wet now for sure. I am glad to have our fall harvest all in. The blessings abound and for that we are thankful.



Bird’s Eye View
December 22, 2017, 12:03 pm
Filed under: December 2017 | Tags: , , , , , ,

Dronefarmblds

December 22, 2017

Last October during a family harvest party, our grandson Jonathan brought his drone and took pictures of the farm. As I look at the pictures, I am very pleased. The harvest is complete. The compost has been spread on the fields where needed. The speltz crop is up and growing well. The pastures have all been clipped and stand ready for winter.

I am very thankful to family and friends who helped to get the farm ready for winter. My knee replacements are healing and doing well. It helps me mentally to know that things are well, jobs are complete and the promise of spring can be seen all over the farm.

The back of the farm too shows the work that has been done and the beauty that is this farm. A pile of lumber in the photo, is now a barn addition that houses the last of the equipment that once had to sit outside all winter long. Again, friends and family pitched in to make this all happen.

drone 2

As we close in on Christmas and the end of the year, I am very happy to share the gift of this farm with everyone. We are blessed, I, most certainly am! I pray that this farm and the example I set here, helps not only the people closest to me, but reaches out to others too. These photos are not meant to brag, but rather to say thank you to many and to show that anything is possible….Dream, Believe, Achieve!



Tank You, Tank You Very Much!
July 30, 2015, 9:23 pm
Filed under: July 2015 | Tags: , , , ,

1,100 Gallon Tank Ready for Install

1,100 Gallon Tank Ready for Install

July 30, 2015

Can you see my lip curling as you read the title? I am very happy to be bringing home my maple sap storage tank. It has been constructed three months ahead of schedule. I am very glad that we built the sugarhouse addition during the rainy days of June. Now, when the cold autumn winds are whipping across the farm, I can be snug in the sugarhouse plumbing up this awesome addition to our operation.

The tank was built by H&M Fabricating on Jug road in Burton, Ohio. These men build all sorts of maple equipment. They are very good at their craft. The use the equipment that they build. They understand the maple business from the tree to the bottle. Their welds are top shelf. Their products are tested before leaving the shop. I have known these men for years now and will recommend them highly.

It seems funny to be thinking about maple syrup season in mid-summer, but I think about it often. I am looking forward to the ease of cleaning this big tank. It will reduce many hours for me, compared to our old set up. I am very grateful to have saved the money for this key piece of equipment. It not only holds 1,100 gallons of sap, but it also will feed the evaporator in my gravity set up.

This reminds me of the recent speltz harvest. It too was gained by hard work, good weather and a blessing from Heaven.

Horse fuel!

Horse fuel!



Friends
February 28, 2015, 12:53 am
Filed under: February 2015 | Tags: , , , ,

Two pals share a meal

Two pals share a meal

February 28, 2015

Last night I broke bread with some great men. They are not famous, but neither am I. They are just regular guys who love their families. They work regular jobs, drive plain old cars and work and worry about life’s events. They lead by example, seek God’s blessings in all they do and lean on one another. It was an honor to get to know them.

Life can be rough. It is a wonderful thing to have friends. Each of us has something to offer another. It may be a skill or perhaps just a hand up. Sometimes, it is just nice to have someone to talk with and share problems, plans and ideas. I am thankful for my friends. My hope is that I am a good friend to others!

As February comes to a close and the temperature once again dips low, I will reflect on the value of friends, dream about warmer days…and make plans for maple syrup making!

 



What a Year! 2013
December 31, 2013, 9:37 pm
Filed under: December 2013 | Tags: , , ,

The Speltz I didn't get

The Speltz I didn’t get

  December 31, 2013   

   What a wet year is was for us in 2013! It is without a doubt the wettest year that I can ever remember. I will never forget making my first cutting hay at the end of August almost three months behind. I left some speltz in the field and the corn crop almost drowned. The woodshed at the sugarhouse didn’t get filled until November, again several months later than usual.   

   The most outstanding thing is, however, all of the success we had in 2013. The pastures stayed lush and green way after frost. The hay made late was still not bad and plentiful to boot. The lambs and calves grew well. The sows gleaned the field saving me many dollars in fuel costs harvesting a poor crop.   

   The woodshed got filled and we spent a wonderful days of fellowship cutting and splitting with family and friends. A small crop of oats was mowed and baled to keep the weeds from taking over. Those bales of oats are feeding sheep and steers as I write. The straw from the speltz that I did get harvested, is providing a warm blanket for a barn full of baby piglets.   

    Our health is good. The gardens produced enough food for our needs and our sugarbush produced the best year so far … of course we also tapped more trees than ever before too 😮   We watched our youngest son and his wife move into their new house….then got the news that we will be grandparents again! We also welcomed great grandbabies into the family and shared many happy times with them and friends alike.   

   Yes, I could go on about all the unfortunate things, but it is so much more fun to share all the good things instead! 2013 will go down as a wet one, but I will celebrate the lessons learned, the good times shared and the blessings enjoyed!