La Petite Tronconneuse (The Little Chain Saw)

It seems smart, when one has free fuel, to use it.  The free fuel here at Blue Rock Horses & Farm is wood.  With a wood stove in the  basement and fireplace on the main floor, this fuel is welcome heat.  The one thing not free about it though is gathering it.  Oh well, just another reason to be beckoned out-of-doors into beautiful fresh air and thoughts.

Moving out to this 14 acre farm last summer made two tools obviously necessary for this PFO.  First things first, a Z-trac John Deere mower was purchased.  Before the ink dried on that sales ticket, the baby chain saw arrived.  Every working farm around has a ‘farm boss’ chain saw or similar.  These are for the men to operate.  This PFO can hardly pick it up, much less start the engine and carry it!   That is why we brought the baby home. The blade is the smallest one made.  It truly looks like the toy ones the boys used to play with as kids—it’s just far more fun!


We brought the baby home!

A word of caution to all those PFO gals that think they may like one:  Know what you are doing before ever using one yourself.   I have spent hours watching my husband, mother (Yes!  Mom had her own), and other knowledgable operators working these machines.  Safety is the priority always on the farm.  There is little room for error with a chain saw.  One must be comfortable and educated to use it. Proper safety equipment must be worn.  But what fun it is once learned!


Soon to be a pile of firewood!

Also, do not be surprised at possibly getting a marriage proposal when purchasing your new baby.  Once the sales guy finds out you are purchasing this saw for yourself, he may just mention that he is available for marriage should your current one fail!


I have spent hours watching safe operators run them.

So here is a photo of the work ‘the baby’ and this PFO got done before the rains came this week.


A nice little start on the wood pile.  Before the rains came.

Man-uel Labor

This cart is the most handy, hard working thing out here on the farm.  I call it my man-uel labor.  It does all the heavy work for me, and helps make my life all the more easy and fun out here at Blue Rock Horses & Farm.    Every PFO should have one of these fun pieces of machinery.


Every PFO should have one of these carts.  Here it carried tools out for tractor repair.

It came from my mother’s farm.  She has always had one on her place, and when we closed up Tag-Along Farm, I brought man-uel home to our place.  It actually is a golf cart and it is listed as an Easy Go Cart.  Mom dubbed it the ‘Hard-to-Go’ because it is hard (really slow) to get going.  I call it my Man-uel labor because it does every heavy thing I ask of it, when I ask, goes where I want when I want, and cleans off with a water hose.  This is a dream come true!


Man-uel labor.  It does every heavy thing I ask of it.  It goes all over the farm working hard.

Truth is life would be pretty hard for this PFO without it.  The bed dumps, which is a huge plus as well.  It carries hay, wood, gravel, manure, straw, rocks, lumber, tools, compost, garden plants and happy grandchildren!  Toot it’s little horn and it has even rounded up the horses!  And when the grandkids turn 11 years old and pass the Hard-to-Go drivers test, they can drive it themselves!  So long as they act responsibly.  Have to take good care of good farm equipment.


It carries hay, wood, gravel, straw, garden supplies, tools, lumber, compost and even happy grandchildren!  Toot it’s little horn and it will round up the horses too!

Thirsty Birds


Ready for ice skating??


It is hard to enjoy a good, cold drink of water when it is frozen.  This is especially problematic for the birds.  We feed the them year ’round out here at Blue Rock Horses & Farm.  It is a well known fact that this PFO (Primary Farm Operator) is not happy unless she is feeding something!  The idea of another electrical cord running over the frozen ground is not very appealing though, so it has not been done.  It has been so cold that the floating heaters keep only a part of the water thawed.  The heaters in the bottom on our tanks do a better job.  This is FAR from a complaint though.  Years and years ago when I was the kid of the PFO (my mom), I had to break ice daily and wrap pipes with heated wires to keep them from freezing!  Times, they have gotten better at least in this regard.


Sometimes the floating heaters keep only part of the water thawed.

However, a little discovery was made quite by accident while out feeding this freezing 12^ morning .  Our water troughs tend to get lower than usual when it is so bitter cold outside.  Who wants to stand in the freezing weather waiting for icy water to fill the trough?   The trough in the Littles’ paddock was too low and needed filling—ugh.  Here is the scenario;  run to put hose is trough; run to turn it on;  hurry! hurry! to be sure hose is in trough and not pouring out to freeze all over ground (sometimes they pop out of trough when water is turned on); run back to unhook and drain hose as quickly as possible before water freezes inside the hose itself.Whew!  Job done, hopefully it will be warmer in next couple days.  If not, the heated trough itself has thawed many a hoses—just drop it in for a couple hours!


A little Titmouse was on the rim taking a sip!

Something caught the corner of my eye as I was working around the barn.  I realized it was a little Titmouse that had quickly noticed the full trough and was more than happy to oblige its’ offer of water.  Unfortunately camera was not in hand.


Now this PFO has to be more careful to keep the water full to the rim, so the little birdies may come and have a satisfying sip!  Another little job here at the farm…


You, Whoopie-pie, will have to come inside for your water!

The Steers are Gone

The hardest part of owning beef cattle came this past Thursday morning.  They are gone.  We had them picked up.  They were too large to haul in our two-horse trailer.

This PFO (Principle Farm Operator) knew this day would come, that did not make it any easier.  And yet, we will raise more again.  It is good, satisfying work, though not profitable in the purse, but rather in the heart.


The hardest part of owning beef cattle has come…

As fate would have it, we fed them and now they are feeding us.  We have a new outlook on the meat we consume now because of raising these steers.  It matters how our food is grown and processed.  Our cattle had good days everyday except for one.


…we fed them, now they are feeding us…

“Give us this day our daily bread,” has taken all full meaning now.  Beef does not come from the grocery store.  It has a face, it moves, runs, is curious, eats, sleeps, grows and dies so we can live.   This is a driving force for us here at Blue Rock Horses & Farm.  We strive to be good stewards of what we have been given and taken on.  If this matters to you, you may be interested in our beef.


Beef does not come from a grocery store.  It has a face…

This PFO is looking forward to the next round of beautiful steers to grow and live here for awhile on this place.


We strive to be good stewards of what we have been given and taken on.


This PFO is looking forward to the next round of beautiful Hereford steers…