going with the flow

Summer is slipping by at a rapid pace.

Our weather is not normal this season. Hay continues growing and going to seed quickly. Area corn is growing higher than I've ever seen it. The bugs are 
pesky and take the fun out of everything. Big flies, little flies, gnats, mosquitos ~ we have them all. In quantity. I think this is the worst bug year to date. We also have had a lot of strong wind, from all directions. Wind cools us off and gives us bug relief, yet rapidly dries up the land. Everything takes a beating.

You gotta go with the flow.

I purchase a head net in a feeble effort to enjoy (?) walking the dogs during bug season. It isn't as fun when you can't stop to look at anything in the woods. You have to walk on fast forward, or get eaten alive.

Blogger Val wears a head net when needed, so do other outdoorsy friends. They are inexpensive and easy to carry along. I can't say I love mine, but I can say I have been able to keep walking the dogs daily. I look like an idiot, good thing dogs don't care. They are just happy to stretch their legs and sniff.

my net

Last week was all about finishing hay, so we didn't ride. If you ever wonder why hay costs so much, there are an incredible amount of days, steps and hours that go into making bales. All weather dependent.

fluffy hay

We had a bumper first crop of hay. Brad mentioned one of our small fields max yield to date was 6 large square bales. This cutting we got 17.

equipment malfunction makes everything take longer

78 bales gone, all gone!!

Very productive for our small property.

(93 bales if you count a couple small fields we rent)

This week we tried riding in the outdoor arena, but it was too buggy. Even with the wind. Under the fans we went. I never thought I would appreciate riding inside during warmer months, but I love it!! So grateful for our big sandbox, we wouldn't be riding otherwise. 

We've ridden 8 times this month (yes, I am counting) and only two rides were completely outside. We tried many other days. Far from the amount of riding we would like to do, but better than recent years.

Ma! A little help here

When you rub your fly mask off somewhere in the pasture, you temporarily get to wear old pieced together stuff. Like ears cut off torn fly masks. I fixed a different mask and saved Koda until his good one was found.

I will look forward to trail riding in Fall. Sooner if the bugs slow down. However, trees on our existing trails still need to be trimmed before that can happen at horse height. Never a lack of things to do.

We continue making progress shaping our land this year. Mostly Brad. He finished moving the south pasture fence!! We will be able to walk/ride a loop that includes the south side of our property now. I tried it out with the dogs this morning.

upper half

horses were so surprised

lower half

Our area usually gets fog in early Spring or later in August. It is still June, at least for today. 

yesterday morning, after some fog cleared

We look forward to a quiet longer holiday weekend.

With whatever summer weather.


Linda said...

Wow. We are also having bumper crops this year, and a lot of horses are foundering. I have always appreciated what goes into my hay, and am so thankful we have a good supplier who is pretty reasonably priced. He delivers and stacks for 390/ton and a $20 surcharge this year because of gas prices. I imagine that means 20 per ton. We always tipped him at least that, anyway, to help with his gas costs. Before last year, that same hay delivered was 275/ton. So, when I see the costs of meat going up, I’m not surprised. Of course, it is.

Oh bugs. We finally get summer, and we have to compete with them. Here’s an odd development around our place. Last year we had a robin family nest in the eave of our back deck. They were right outside our window, and in our outdoor seating area. The father was killed by the barn cats, but the mother got them safely out of the nest. This year we had several nest around our house, in every nook and cranny, and I wonder if it’s not then returning to their old home. They’re keeping our bugs down and I wish they’d stay forever.

The big hat is one of those things you just have to do, I guess. They don’t look fun. I have to wear long sleeves this time of year. I shared an Orvis shirt in one of my blog posts, and it arrived and is like second skin. Breathes well. Dries fast. Keeps you almost cool. It has helped me continue to wear long sleeves without feeling hot. I ended up buying two more and wear them everyday. It’s summer, but we’re finding ways to cover up our bodies. Lol!!

Linda said...

I forgot to say that your indoor arena is awesome! That is turning out to be such a wise investment. You’re getting a lot of rides in!! What’s even more wonderful, you can keep it up all year. I wish I could say the same.

aurora said...

Very true. When one person has a bumper crop so does everyone else in the general vicinity. You are fortunate to have a regular provider, and they stack! When we bought hay, we were always searching for providers. It was unsettling. Not sure what hay is going for around here. I know Brad charges under market per bale, to a repeat buyer who takes the whole crop right off the field.

Yikes, on the foundering. We are being very careful when switching pastures this year. Robins do return to the same nesting area, as do many birds. Looks like yours brought the whole family :)

I remember your wonderful Orvis shirt. I wear a tank under my old cotton button downs, with them open. Not ideal, but they work for my walks.

It seems we are always battling some seasonal factor.

I had my hesitation on building an indoor arena. We had a long time to save & think about it. Brad really did a great job. So far this Summer our arena feels like it is air conditioned. Insulation is so important in buildings. Many people skimp, or skip it all together. Big mistake.

Koda is such a hot body, bugs love him. He has a hard time getting bit non-stop outside. It's not fun for me either, while he tries to get them off. Right now we can't just go faster to get away from them either.

Perhaps there is an indoor arena nearby you can rent, even if per ride. I wish every horse owner had one, or at least access to one!

Grey Horse Matters said...

I can't tell you how many fly masks go missing! We're constantly looking through the fields for them. They wear the masks everyday and Rosie and Sami usually have grazing muzzles on, which Hanz helps Sami take off on a regular basis! The bugs really do ruin everything. I like your head net, I told my daughter I was considering wearing a fly mask myself!

Good to hear you're getting to ride. I like the indoor in the summer too, it just seems cooler and the footing is better. The outside arenas seem very hard if we don't drag them all the time. Your property looks beautiful it will be so nice to ride around it when you can, weather and bugs permitting.

Far Side of Fifty said...

Yeah for your hay! Yes it is buggy here too! I hate the biting flies and the skeeters! Stay cool! It looks to be a nice weekend here just in the 70's...love it!!

aurora said...

My net was only $11.99 at REI. They likely sell them at all sporting good stores. I've been popping it on/off in the buggier areas, which includes my butterfly garden.

Silly horses! How is Blue? I miss hearing about his antics. Wish I could put a grazing muzzle on Koda. Just not willing to risk it with the hay bunk. We cut way back on everyones evening hay & trying to ride more.

When it seems like not enough is getting done, we try to remind ourselves where we started with this property (completely undeveloped). It is very much a work in progress & labor of love.

Thank you :)

Val Ewing said...

You've done a great job on your place! It looks beautiful.
Hubby built us a huge shed that was supposed to be an indoor riding area. Hmmm, filled it with 'stuff'. I can ride in the pastures and do once in a while still.

I purchased one of those long sleeve shirts that are nice and light and breathable. However when in our wild woods I wear an old cotton shirt like you over a tank. Too many berry briers!

Just call me jealous of your indoor riding! :)