Last week I got a call from my parents asking what we were going to be doing over Memorial Day weekend. We were planning on going to Des Moines to pick up some things we found on Craigs List, but when they threw out the offer to help do some work on the farm - coming armed with two chainsaws and a rototiller, we quickly changed our plans!
The forecast for the weekend was great weather on Saturday and rain and storms on Sunday and Monday. I called up my cousin, Tim, who has graciously been offering help every time we see him, to let him know what we were up to. He said he would be around Saturday morning to pitch in too.
Unfortunately, the weather forecast was quite wrong, and we woke up with rain on Saturday. Since Tim had plans in the afternoon, he had to take a rain check. The rain did clear up eventually, however, and our family and my parents were able to go out and work from 3 until 7. With the forecast of rain all day also being wrong for Sunday and Monday, we were able to go out again today for another long morning of work that ended around 1.
Here is a summary of what we got accomplished:
Saturday, Ethan worked on tearing out the last of the woven and barbed wire that was left on the farm. My dad took his chainsaw to the trees and bushes that had grown in and around the fence line, and I threw what was cut into the ditch. (We hope to clear out the ditch next fall, but until then there will be some good wildlife habitat!) Also, my mom helped out by playing with the kids on top of the hill where we have mowed.
Today my dad cut down some rather large trees that were along the fence line, along with more bushes and smaller trees. Ethan and I followed to clean up the trimmings. My mom had bought some fun new toys for the kids at the dollar store and played with them again on the hill top.
With the two days of work, we were able to get the entire overgrown fence line cleared. Now we just need to pull out the last of the posts, run the mower along the line, and the farm is ready for new fence!
We did try to plow up a spot for the garden, and my mom would have helped plant it - but it was just too wet with the unexpected rain Saturday morning. Hopefully it will dry soon, and we can get that garden in.
It was a great two days of work, however, I did run into a couple of things that weren't that enjoyable - seeing the unexpected things that can happen with chainsaws, continuing to flick ticks off and pull them off of our kids, and the welts and blisters that come from poison ivy. (I saw I was working in large patches of it, but how can I let others work through it who don't even own the land if I'm not willing to.) Thankfully, it seems if I am the only one who has reactions to it. (Tim- I bet you're glad you didn't have to find out if you do or not!)
Even with the more uncomfortable parts of farm work, I do really enjoy hard work outside, and I find it refreshing to work up a sweat doing physical work (as long as I know a shower is coming!).
I am extremely thankful for all of the hard work my dad put in helping us and that my mom was able to play with the kids so I could pitch in easier too. Also, I have to send Tim a thanks for offering his help even if it didn't work out.