Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Things We Do Before Breakfast

Irrigation 101
There are different types of irrigating. Flood or
sprinkler, and under sprinkler you have wheel lines, hand lines, big guns, and pivots.
On our place we flood irrigate, and have hand lines and wheel lines.

West End of Pipeline (Wheel Line)
It's about 7am.
We are in the field south of the house. This field is perhaps 200 acres.
We have a total of 1170 acres of 'grass' and pasture.
Our summer job is to grow grass for the critters aka sheep and cattle.
We water the grass, grow the grass, put the animals in,
let them graze and move them to more grass.

My husband leaves at 6am, and comes home at 8pm.
Well, he also comes in at noon for lunch.
He usually irrigates until about 10 am, then works livestock, or fence,
or other 'ranch stuff'. Then, he starts irrigating again about 5pm.

Farther Down the line
Now you are looking at hand line that is attached to the wheel line

The Entire AM Crew
Dick on the quad, about 5 dogs, and 2 kids
Sami & Jake move the hand line segments
at 7 am and 7 pm

Draining the Line
The line gets drained first, before moving pipe
That's my casa in the background

Moving Pipe
Team Sami & Jake
The real reason why most ranch kids don't get into trouble
They don't have time!

Sami At the Front of Pipe Segment
Sami has the sprinkler end
The kids are moving 23 segments of pipe

Jake at the End of Pipe Segment
Jake unhooks the pipe from the other segment, holds up the pipe
and drains any water.
Then they move to the next spot where the line
will be running for the next 12 hour set

A View of the Other End of the Line
The water line extends East & West in the field.
We are looking East
(but you knew that, right? It's morning, the sun is right over there, East)

Look West
Here comes the boss and two other crew members!
Dick meets the kids at 7am. He gets them started,
then takes off and comes back to see how they are doing


Just thought I would share our summer morning routine:
  • 5 am: Dick & I wakeup. I prep the kitchen (make coffee, put out juice and fruit for the kids) - Dick does his stretches, eats, I stretch, I wander off - fold laundry, dust, get sidetracked (let's call this my zombee hour!)
  • 6:15 am: I wake the kids - they put on their work clothes and eat their fruit
  • 7 am: Kids go irrigate, I do my outdoor chores (free the chickens, trash, today I went out and took photos)
  • 7:30 am: I come back - Make the remainder of breakfast for the kids (today is French toast, with French bread) - put it into the oven. Do some housework (or blog, or get sidetracked with some other project!). This morning I am doing laundry, dusting, changed one light bulb, and uh, blogging. I did manage to get tonight's dinner into the Crockpot! Tip: a Crockpot does not put off as much heat as the oven!
  • 8:15 am: Kids come back from irrigating, then prep bottles and go feed the bummer lambs
  • 9:15am: An hour has gone by. I go looking for the kids. This morning I found them saving a baby gopher from the cats. They took the baby out into a field. I remind them that breakfast is waiting and they still have to do their other outdoor chores (cats, chickens, dogs)
  • 9:20 ish: Kids eat
Now it's 9:35 am.

My goals for today: Housework 2 hours, yardwork 2 hours, office work 2 hours, and a trip to town (if I get the recycling loaded up!)

I also took photos of the beef and some rotational grazing shots. I'll share those later!


Lauren said...

Wow! What a busy time before breakfast! I knew I was sedentary... but jeesh!!! Thanks for sharing this glimpse into your life... I find it fascinating! :)

noble pig said...

Holy cow, you are dang busy with a hard days work...when do you scrap woman?

Lisa Renéa said...

Girl, I don't know how you get a minute to ink a stamp! You must be Super Woman! :) I lived on a small farm as a teen, so I truly respect and appreciate the before sun up until after sun down routine. Makes me tired thinking about it!! Love your photos! What a beautiful ranch you have, the view is breathtaking!

Dawn said...

I need a nap now!!!!!

Arlene said...

I used to spend summers in Pennsylvania at a farm in the rolling hills, forest, grassland, garden, applce orchards, trees for climbing and milking the cows in the evening. We were going all the time. It is truly beautiful where you live. (Clarian's Hawk)

Sue McGettigan said...

Andi you ARE Superwoman!! I love hearing about your life on the ranch, and your kiddos are certainly growing up with a sense of responsibility that will make them wonderful citizens - way to go Mom!

Sandy said...

You're like the navy---more done in your life before my alarm clock even goes off! lol.

Thanks for sharing all this---I always wondered about the irrigation and how that kind of thing works. I guess I thought it was all automated...but it's CHILD-automated, lol!

Kerilou said...

That is quite a schedule! Those kids must sleep at night. Refreshing to see kids who know what work is, that is for sure!! Loved seeing all the photos-irrigation is definitely an education for me!! Kerilou