Weekend loader-tractor-tiller rental

Mike’s parents sponsored the rental of a loader-tractor-tiller to work up our big garden, and to perform a few yearly chores that we don’t have the “tools” to do throughout the year. We are so grateful! πŸ™‚

There are some things a large tractor just can’t do. And we don’t have a front loader, so this one we rent does some annual chores we save up for this annual rental… πŸ™‚

Mike had scheduled it for earlier last week, but the forecast was for rain/storms, so we cancelled it. Turned out to be a blessing in disguise, though… Learned that since Monday was a holiday, we could rent it after 11am on Saturday, and have it until 9am on TUESDAY!! When you rent a tractor, it is for 8 hours of “use”. In the past, it has always been difficult to use all 8 of the hours when it has to be back the next day (without completely exhausting Mike), and we try to not purposely schedule extra work for Sundays. So, the additional day that came as a result of the holiday was so wonderful! Here are some pics of what got accomplished:

Tilling up the big garden…

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It’s a good thing the garden is ready for planting now – just had our plants delivered from Skipper’s Nursery! They started our plants for us last year, too. I’ll do a future post on those as we get them planted. So glad we have friends who are willing to barter with us! This saved me many hours of labor & frustrations since we just don’t have a good setup/location to grow our own plants. πŸ™‚

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Next was the removal of the old satellite dish by our house. One of the best things we’ve ever done was cancel our TV. Did that almost 5 years ago. We have a DVD player, so that suffices for our media. I, for one don’t miss it AT ALL! I am soooo excited to finally have that ugly dish gone, lol! πŸ™‚

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Next was the attempt to smooth out the dip at the end of our driveway. We have a scary driveway – in a low spot between two hills. A left turn is a “blind turn” – and a right turn is not quite as hazardous, but can be if you don’t wait long enough for cars to clear a low area. In other words, when you pull out of our driveway, rocks will SPIN, because you need to be accelerating quickly – hence a hole grows larger as the year goes by…

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Next stop, pulling up feed troughs that got buried this winter from hay-feedings… (Um – yeah – don’t do that! Much better to carry in bales or slices and place them in different spots. Laziness never produces a good ending…)

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Lol – the calves were VERY interested!

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This trough was a little trickier because there was no easy way to get into this side of the barnyard. Fortunately, overtop of the fence worked out fine. πŸ™‚

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I got to help on this one, since Mike was on the other side of the fence…

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On to the milking barn next door. Time for the annual “clean out/scrape away” from the cow’s entrance…

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Next up was trying to fix Mike’s parents’ driveway. It washes out in spots, so this was an effort to patch it up for now. Mike’s brother got to “play” with the tractor, too… πŸ™‚

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Next Mike headed across the road to begin the “end phase” of the last part of our EQIP grant. Can’t wait to be done with our contract – it’s been a l-o-n-g six years. This phase entails creating a filter area to catch the water from our milkhouse drain. When a road crew came through a few years ago to replace a culvert, we asked if they would bury a conduit for us. Thankfully, they agreed! Since our contract is up this summer, it’s time to wrap things up. πŸ™‚

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These rocks by the milking barn have been causing water to leak into the corner of the barn. A better place for them is across the road, lining the trench… (Killing two birds with one stone ? Ha!) πŸ™‚

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And back & forth they went…

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Can’t resist – “the three muskateers” or “pied piper” ? πŸ™‚

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And last-but-not-least… A fun treat! Something Mike’s never had enough time to do, but has often talked about over the years, is to see if an old small brush hog would fit and work on this smaller tractor. This brush hog is leftover from when the farm was leased out as a Christmas tree farm. It has been in the way sat in the barn for years, without the right sized tractor to pull it… Mike & Ben were able to get it to attach & work!

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Oh my – this little cutter worked so well!! Mike was able to go around the entire perimeter of Gray Heaven – saved him HOURS of weed whipping fencelines!

And then he was able to clear more area around Mordor – something he’s wanted to do for a long time! πŸ™‚

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Now that we know this mower works so well, no doubt we’ll add more paths to cut on our future to-do lists… πŸ™‚

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Thank You, Lord, for this productive weekend!

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