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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Afternoon at the Tractor Pull -- May 14, 2011 Bremond, TX

Tractor "track" in -- digital display for length of the pull

Kudos to the Brazos Valley Antique Tractor and Engine Club; I had a most entertaining afternoon at their first event. This is the first tractor pull I've ever attended. 

The track was finished early this morning and was regularly maintained throughout the day. 


Hitch up to the sled, and make your run!
  We have a 1945 Farm-All H, so I'm partial to Farm-Alls. Many different sizes and shapes, but all International Red.

When the front wheels go up, life gets interesting

Best to keep wheels on the ground


I remember seeing Minneapolis-Molines when I lived in Wisconsin. Usually they smoke a lot more when running hard.

Tractors and drivers vary in size, tractors organised by weight class

Art admires Hot Rod tractor which uses dragster fuel

 The Hot Rods are amazing tractors -- loud as their namesakes, powerful pullers, and fast, too. Top speed today was 19 mph, which looks a lot faster in person.
6000 class tractor and another Hot Rod Tractor

Santa drives a Hot Rod in May

Suddenly "Here Comes Santa Claus" blasted out over the speakers. Santa hitched 
up to the sled, shook his hands out at arms length and settled into his seat to the roars of the crowd. What a great a great run! He fairly flew!

Deafening! Poor kiddo! I was holding my ears, too!

Nothing like the smell of diesel fuel in the afternoon!

Activities for the kids, booths with souveniers, loads of booths with barbecue and other Texas treats, a silent auction, some great emcees, and beautiful weather made the day a pleasure.

By the way, did you know there are Country Western songs about tractors?

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Progress in Preparedness

Apologies for the time lapse, but sometimes life just happens, you know?

Gardens now blooming and setting veggies. I watch them grow daily, chanting " I will not pick yet. I will not pick yet." Those baby squash are looking mighty tasty!
The little green peppers are whispering my name. I must not pick yet!

Scarlet Emperor runner beans are Italian type green beans

Pretty blossoms, but no beans yet.

The drought has seriously affected the dewberries that survived the herbicide applied by the electric company. We'll probably get a handful of berries this year compared to the bounty last year. Have to start watering the pear trees before the fruit drops off.

Last year's dewberry jam burbling away

 I have canning jars waiting to fill with jams and preserves for those emergency shelves. Bought 32 pounds of strawberries to take up some of the slack left by the dewberries. Hubby and I are starting jam production tomorrow.

Things are so dry I'm finding it hard find wild green feed to cut for the rabbits. Have to plant more swiss chard to make up the diffference. Fifty rabbits can eat a LOT of rabbit food-- more than a pound an animal per week with small amounts of greens and handsfulls of hay to supplement. Today two disappointing does will go to the freezer, but none of the younger ones are big enough to process yet. The next group needs another month of growth to qualify as fryers.

Art's been feeding bunny poo to the wild grape vines we're culturing. They've taken off hugely with the extra food and water. We'll actually get some grapes this year.

 He visits the fig trees with buckets of poo and water,too. If he isnt tired enough after that, he hauls compost, and scoops it out into the new raised beds.After that, strewing rabbit poo around established plants gives them a boost in growth and productivity. Bunny poo is nature's time release fertilizer, but he also mixes it into buckets of water for bunny poo tea to water with. 50 bunnies make a lot of poo! Therefore Art makes lots of compost, too.

Hangman and brother-in-Law, Dan,brought another load of dirt. I kid him that it'll take forever if he is going to move his family up here one cubic yard at a time. He'd offered me a choice of dirt or another dead fridgie -- so hard to choose! Two of the fridgies at the shooting range moved up to the garden line-up, so the load of dirt won. A pair of young breeding rabbits left with Dan to form the foundation of his rabbit empire. Two less for us to feed, and cash to buy more rabbit chow.

Matthew and Hangman installed a water meter (found by Mr. H.) for the spigot leading to the gardens and the animal area. Now we have an accurate measure of the water --for farm use only-- to take off on our taxes.

Self sufficiency on the increase,gardens going, canning season beginning, good friends got our back, family pitching in: life is good. Hate to be greedy, but how about some more rain? Please?