One of my favorite quotes from Joel is “Make hay while the sun shines.” I think about this quote often. While the underlying idea can be applied to many aspects of life, it can also be taken quite literally. Over the past 3 weeks we’ve taken Joel’s advice quite literally.
We’ve been blessed with great weather and have been making hay like it’s going out of style!
Making hay is a multi-step process. This year I’ve gotten to do or help with every step along the way! It’s exciting and fulfilling to see a field with shoulder high grass be turned into something that will help feed our animals over the winter.
First step: mowing. In my opinion mowing is the most exciting of the entire process. Running the mower was a new experience for me this year. It requires strategy, concentration, precision, and, sometimes, quick reflexes. There’s just something thrilling and satisfying about watching a waving green pasture turn into even rows behind the mower.
Step two: (optional) tedding. Tedding the hay just flips/spreads it so that it can dry faster and more evenly.
Step three: raking. This is the last step before baling. Raking a tedded field is pretty fun. It also takes strategy. If you’re raking, you know that you’re the last person to move the hay before the baler comes through. So it’s your job to think about how the person baling is going to want to divide up the field to most efficiently bale. I love driving through a field of tedded hay and making nice clean windrows. I’ve decided that there are windrows, and then there are windrows. Most of what I raked this year windrows.
We’ve made a LOT of hay already, and we’re still not done!