Monday, October 11, 2010

Racing Before The Rain…..A Farmer’s Life

Yesterday was a beautiful Indian Summer day; blue skies, very warm, and the sound of farm machinery all throughout the countryside.
No different here; usually I miss the acreage being cut, but had the opportunity to get a few shots. Those big JD’s move fast!

0 harvest 1sm

A glimpse of the trees beyond the corn, in their festive colors. They will be bare fast, I fear---the color seems to change before my eyes. Leaves crunched beneath my feet and gently swirled down in the warm breezes.

0 harvest 1a

And the behemoth comes chugging around the corner, filled with the crop from the field. Swift passes, stalks cut, seed separated…..

0 harvest 2 sm

Hissing and spewing chaff all about…….oh yes….I would LOVE to drive one of these! (think Milo and the small John Deere….uh huh….not good!)

0 harvest 3 sm

And finally, this green giant depositing beautiful, golden corn into the waiting semis.
I romanticize---this is a hard life that requires relentless faith and constant upkeep of what it takes to put the crop in, keep the land healthy, feed and nourish the plants and pray for rain….and then dry for harvest.
My grandfather farmed, and I am sure, if he were alive, it would amaze him as it does me, how the process has become so LARGE. But I thank the families who still do this, one acre at a time, in the proper manner. They are our food source, our health, and our ability to step away from corporate farming and the illness and scars it brings to the land.

To all the family farmers; THANK YOU. A THOUSAND TIMES.



yoborobo said...

Hi Anne! My mom's family farmed, and I agree completely. We should hug every small farmer we meet - lol! It is a hard life, and I tend to romanticize it. My mom sets me straight - haha! She has many good memories of growing up on a family farm, but she'd be the first to tell you it was hard work. :) Farmers in our area lost most of their crops because of the heat and lack of rain we had here this summer. Love the pic of the corn coming out the chute! xoxo Pam

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Pam,

I actually *know* how much work it was from visiting my grandparents and of course being involved (and seeing the physical toll it took) but I often think if I had been given the opportumity much younger, I would have enjoyed the life. Not the money worries, but.....
The cycle of planting to harvest; I watch each time they are out, I watch the seed sprout, I still scythe the area of the field where they drive in (I'm sure they don't know that!)and I am thankful the ground is being used and not filled with trailers or manufactured homes.....
Somehow, even with the weather we had here, the fields seemed to produce well--two semis went out of the small area brimming full and the combine is still parked there this a.m.
Hmmmmmmm.....should I have a Milo Moment??? ;D


Gayle Pritchard said...

THisis a sight I have always loved, having grown up in a rural area. Beautiful pix!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Gayle!!!

Nice to see you pop in, in all your *spare time* (tongue firmly planted in cheek!)
Hope you're doing well--I have been lax at keeping in touch with folks. My bad.


marianne said...

nice shots! love indian summer. it's important to keep the family farms going -the food is so much healthier and people whould be able to make a living providing food for us. husband's dad farms & we were lucky enough to attend farm aid last weekend- which is doing great things to help people stay on their farms.

Ces said...

I thought you were driving it Anne. Hubba Bubba!

My husband's family came from Norway, England and Germany. They farmed in Wisconsin and Illinois and supported themselves during the great depression.

My parents' ancestors were landowners and although my mother's family did not directly farmed the land, they let the other farmers do it.

I would like to own a farm, small farm, with giant bamboo groves.

I don't think we will have a need for that combine, it may cost more than the land!

I love JD green. I love the miniature toys!

Gotta get ready for work.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Marianne,

I remember you mentioning about Farm Aid--I probably missed a post but read on a quick FB trip.
Too bad the media doesn't cover that like they used to; if you don't have farming roots, no one has any idea how hard the work is.


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Ces,

Me driving the combine would have been like letting Milo drive it! LOL!!!
If I knew the farmer wasn't going to be here for a while, I would get my little tiny lawn JD out, park it beside the big one and get a photo! (the size is just MASSIVE)
No, probably better that Anne does not run anything that LARGE, that CUTS things..... ;D


Caio Fern said...

this is a really really really fatastic post .
thank you for saying and showing all this .

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Caio,

I wish I could have gotten more photos---it is so fascinating how it all works, but of course they work FAST (this area is 12 acres, very little) and I couldn't go chasing the combine! ;D
It is amazing to watch different from my grandfather's farming.


Magpie's Mumblings said...

Amen to that Anne - thank you indeed. I grew up on a hundred acre mixed farm and the life certainly was hard and not in the least bit profitable. However, we never lacked for food on the table. My dad grew up before the machinery (even tractors) was in use and did everything with horses and by hand. Certainly a different life than today.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Grandpa had 100 acres; raised cows, chickens, I think some pigs, because there was the smoke house and wonderful hams---I don't know where he kept the pigs! There were beehives, a garden.....and he had been both in the pre-machinery age (had a forge for repairs and horse shoes) and the most recent tractor he had was one of the old, tilted front wheel Farm-Alls.
I still don't know how family farms do it.....everything has become so expensive to buy, run, repair, etc.....
However, I still would love to bet to cut loose and run that combine! LOL!!! (it's just sitting there...)


Georgina said...

Just lovely, Anne. Those colours beyond the fields are just amazing. Wish I could take a run up to Santa Fe right now...the high desert is on fire this time of year. I told you, that here in West TX, everything goes from green to brown to dead...not much in between, except our neighbor across the street...that's the only leaf changing I see...his 4 little non-bearing pear trees!! LOL

The farmers out here are doing the same...we go up the old road to Las Cruces, NM, actually to Mesilla and the farmers are busy doing their thing too...also picking lots of green chile and then hanging them up to dry...ristras...many of the residents dry their chiles on their roof tops...great Fall colours.

Love y,

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

I would love to see the different crops coming in there Georgina; especially the chiles!
The color is still good---we had been predicted rain today but it looks like another day in the 80's, so with the cool nights, there is HOPE that I will get one day to shoot some of the colors up close!
In the meantime, I am still diligently working on the green tree on the wall---last section being pieced! WHOO--HOOO!!!


Deborah said...

Love seeing the leaves changing on the trees. Love your writing. That was very beautiful. Yes, a big thanks to the farmers. I love veggies!
**kisses** Deb

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...


Run away till the house gets done and come see the leaves turn! And we can abscond with the big JD!!!
;D (well, you know, just a joy ride....)


Jan said...

These giant machines are like magic, miracle machines. Can't believe what they can do.

Your photos are gorgeous,as usual. Hope you are having another lovely autumn day.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

It was like magic, watching what all was happening. I was explaining to Gary what all the combine does....
It is GORGEOUS today; supposed to get up in the low 80's and I am working away in the studio.
Think I'll do a post of the *in progress mess* of doing fiber art! LOL!!!


Manon Doyle said...

Oooh!! What a great post!! I just love Indian Summer. The air, colors and especially the golden sun. I wish it would stick around for a lot longer than it does.


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

I love it too Manon!
Sometimes we get weeks of it; sometimes the rain starts andthat's the end of everything...grey, wet, and cold.
I'm always antsy at this time of year; trying to transition from yard and outside to more time inside. Hard to put in words.....I think the changing weather and sunlight has a lot to do with it too!


Cathy Bueti said...

Anne this is a great post! Love the photos! And I too love indian summer . . . wish the fall lasted longer!

Although we are not farmers my hubby would just love to ride a tractor! lol


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

I think I have too much *guy* in me Cathy---Dad raised me pretty much a tomboy, so the bigger the machinery, the more interest it holds! LOL!
I did buy a weedeater once that was so big I could not get it into the Buick Roadmaster---it had to hang out the it's not just a guy-thing! LOL!
Got to get out walking with the camera; it is beautiful today!


Bella Sinclair said...

Amen to that! Bless all the farmers.

On a separate note, I've always wanted to go through a cornfield labyrinth. Think he could mow me one?

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Heehee! Not now Bella!
It is all cut, though I will say with the way he was slinging that big green monster around, the answer would be YES! (I've never been through one either and they do seem like fun, and we have them not too far from us....)
Make Ces draw us one...yes??? :D


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...


Thank you so much for following up on my concern about our Tristan...I am so glad to hear that he is up and well and working! I must catch him up! AWESOME STUFF HERE DEAREST! WOWOOWOWWW!


Silke said...

Oh, that brings back memories - I spent many summer vacations working on farms - I've done much of everything, even driven the big tractors. I used to love it, but I'm too flitty have a farm of my own... You know what I mean - maybe I feel like harvesting the corn, maybe I don't... Love, TSUP!! Silke

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Thanks Anita!
I have to redo that jazz player all the time--lost tracks--some of the old ones are my favorites and cannot find them now.(Coltrane, Dizzy, Miles, etc...)
Yep, Tristan is a man on the move!
I need to write him and ask if he remembers who the heck I am....hahaha!!!


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Ah Silke!

I am thoroughly jealous you got to drive a big tractor! LOL!
I hear you---I flit too. It is like joining the convent; you devote your life to the land and animals and they always come first.
I don't think at this point I would even have the focus for a hobby farm......oh look! A butterfly! ;D


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Thanks ANNE! Oh, you are making want to add some jazz to my playlist now! HAVE FUN DEAREST....Anita

studio lolo said...

My husband has been an editor for a produce publication for years now. He knows first hand how hard farmers work. Bless their hearts!

Nice shots of the before and after plowed-dom.

I'm home sicker than I have been in at least ten years. Nasty virus got a damn good hold of me!!
I'm visiting blogs in fits and starts as the energy allows.

Back to bed. Oy...


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Ah geez Lolo...sorry to hear you are under the weather. I know whatever I had knocked me for a loop. Lasted a bit over a week and everyday I thought I was *oaky* until I moved.
So just REST!
And get well soon!!!


Ces said...

Hahahah! drive it! Drive it!

Hey Anne, read this:

it's my brother's blog. He is very techie but it's interesting what he is planning to do.

chickory said...

it is a hard life, but i believe a good life. it beats the hell out of sitting in some cubicle in a high rise! I love being outside with the colors and rhythm of the seasons. Beautiful to see the corn too. We had similar posts today. Our colors seemed to pop over night. and our indian summer? its going away by the weekend i heard....

*Ulrike* said...

You have to admire farmers because it is hard work with long days too. The leaf colors are so pretty. Ours have not changed that much yet, but soon. Hope you are feeling much better!
Take Care,

Gloria said...

What a great post with all the beautiful photos to go with it. It's a good life, farming is. I come from that era of tractors, the tractor my dad had when he tilled the soil. Those were the good days and I try to relive them in my own yard. We don't have a tractor but we have almost an acre on which to grow our foods. Thanks for this heartwarming post, it's right up my alley. Have a great Tuesday.

Ima Weed said...

I thought I would die before the age of 16 from all the work my sister and I did on the farm (no boys in this family) but, today I wish all children could know farm life as it was. It's the best way to learn about responsibility, working with others, accepting that you don't always get what you want and you'll end up with a work ethic that will get you through life.

Elena said...

Oh Anne this was beautiful. Moving from city life to country life a year ago I've been enthralled by the farmers and the combines. My mom and her family were farmers in Mexico. I truly admire these hard workers. And yep, I had no clue about Farm Aid.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey all,

Thanks for the kind replies on this post. When I put it up, I wasn't sure if it would resonate with others outside the midwest.
I am pleased and amazed at how many folks had farming in their life in some manner (or still do). I too agree that it produces a work ethic and love of nature that can't come any other way. It binds us to this planet and makes one know how precious the production of a crop is.
I also wish the guys who were working would have been around long enough that I could have told them they were the *Star Post* on the blog! Let them know thata there is appreciation for their occupation....far and wide!


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