Monday, July 15, 2013

MONDAY MUSINGS--Sweating The Mañana List

I'm mostly on  vacation this month. You may have noticed I haven't visited as much or even posted. The truth is I've barely been on the computer or online. I will be getting back to all that but July will be hit and miss.

I'd love to tell you it was for writing but, no. It's a working vacation. 

We've had projects pending around the ranch for sometime and July has been earmarked as the month to get them done. I've been working outside daily since the first of July. I don't mind telling you I'm sore and tired. But, it feels good to see progress made. Things need repairing and there are areas that have been in dire need of cutting and clearing, fences worked on, and accumulated clutter sorted and gone. 

A lot of stuff has accumulated over the past 3 years and with my being so very ill and and unable to do much of anything but hobble from bed to the recliner, the doctor, or brief times at the computer. Hubs works full time. Then last year, when I was in remission, and feeling much better, I went to work so we could knock out bills from that time. So these things got moved to the Mañana list (as in En el día del mañana or sometime in the future). 

So July is devoted to clearing as much of the Mañana list as possible. After the tornado the down trees were cut and loaded on trucks and sent to the mill. The remaining brush piles of unwanted limbs, fence posts, and old wood and roofing of the barns and sheds were piled in various areas around the property. They're out of the way but need to be disposed of.

We (that would be hubs since he's working only 4 days a week until October, kid, and I) have made a lot of progress on the immediate yard as well. It actually looks good again. The jungle in the Dane's pens (and these aren't little pens, they're 200' wide and 300' long) have been cleared and it almost looks pretty and that was last week's project. Still need to go over all the pens with the weed-eater. There is still several boundary areas of the yard that need brush cleared around fences and some of the trees--I have a miniature forest growing under several oak trees. That's this weeks project. 

Even though July has remained relatively cool, compared to last year, that sun is still hot. So this child is up very early in the morning and outside until about lunch and then back out about 4-ish. Still hot and sweaty work and the AC is godsend on these days when I'm done.  I slither into a wobbly pile of goo and rest. I am pacing myself and taking lots of small breaks and drinking tons of water. I've resorted to wearing a name tag because I'm usually too tired to recall my name or the day. I have mush brain. Ice packs and muscle ointments and I are really, really good friends. By 8 p.m. I'm usually crawling into bed.

I'll be back to normal blogging, erm, mañana.


Unknown said...

Look at that pile of brush! Talk about a bonfire.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Stay hydrated! At least you can see progress being made in the yard.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sia .. I can imagine your land takes lots of looking after - but how lovely to be able to get out and about and enjoy it ... then get to see it looking tidier etc ..

Thank goodness for one hubby helping out and one young lad providing some extra muscle ..

July looks like a good month .. and you're obviously pacing yourself well .. lots of water and small breaks .. enjoy - Hilary

~Sia McKye~ said...

Melanie, lol! Yeah, it makes quite a bonfire and hot. We have several piles we're burning. :-)

Alex, I'm definitely staying hydrated. Water is a must when working, especially outside in the heat, although it's not too bad today, only 81 degrees with 60% humidity. Wednesday-Friday are going to be the hot days, mid 90's. Those are the days I'll be knocking off early--depending upon how it feels.

Hilary, yes, land takes quite a bit of work. It's all good though. It feels good to look at what has been accomplished. Just wish we had the means to get a front end loader to dig a trench to lay another water line to the Dane pens. Make it so much easier for winter watering. No way are we attempting a 60 foot trench by hand in July with the ground becoming hard like it is. We have lots of rocks, too. That's back breaking work and since I've already fractured mine once, no thanks.

Yes Ma'am, I'm being very sensible and careful with this work.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

That's the sort of thing we try to do early spring or late fall. It's just too humid here and the bushes are full of wasps. I can see them buzzing outside my window even as i type this.

Ciara said...

I've always dreamed of living on a ranch, but I'm glad I don't have to work on one. That looks like some hard labor. I'm glad you're hydrating and taking lots of breaks.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Diane, it's been unseasonably cool here this year--mostly in the 80's and not the 95 plus, whew! We really get major humidity here, too. Not so bad the beginning of July but by the end and into August and September, it's brutal. We get a lot of wasps, too, and seed ticks are awful. We load up on Deep Woods Off.

Dan is the designated wasp hunter. They like to make nests in the dog feeders or in their houses. They're fast workers too. So, he's been knocking them down as we find them. So far, so good on not finding or stumbling over any yellow jacket ground nests. God, I hate yellow jackets.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Ciara--yes, the work can be hard but the finished product is great! Truthfully,the work evens out. It wouldn't be so bad now if we had been able to do some of the stuff last year. We concentrated just keeping things mowed the last couple of years. But these chores have to be done. Once we catch up, then it's much easier to maintain. Thankfully.

Stephen Tremp said...

I do all my yard work early in the morning. I may only have an hour though as it heats up fast and I don't like working in the blazing hot sun.

Luanne G. Smith said...

Do take care of yourself and don't over do it. That's why we have husbands and offspring. :P

Also, as I read this I was thinking it was going to lead to a metaphor on revision. Your description of clearing and burning the brush and junk is very similar to my revision process.

Good luck with all that work! See more of you in August I hope. :)

Jo said...

Look after yourself Sia, don't overdo it. I know there is a lot to do, but watch it. Glad you are hydrating, but I think next time you had better designate a cooler month for this kind of work.

Tammy Theriault said...

good luck on your manana list!!

Mark Koopmans said...


No, seriously... wow... what a task y'all have taken on - but I suppose you have no other choice, with it being your land - but I am mightily impressed nonetheless :)

(I can barely - I swear - mow our little backyard more than once a month :)

GOOD LUCK the rest of the way - and don't push yourself, young lady :)

PS... we *did* get new orders, but we get to stay in HI, so if you've ever over here (before Sept. '15)... let me know :)

~Sia McKye~ said...

Steve--I'm careful with working in the hot sun. We've had a several cool days this month--80 degrees max. When it's hot, I start early too, and knock off about 10/11 and take a siesta until the late afternoon and early evening. Fortunately it's still light here at 8:30/9:00.

Jo-I'm taking care not to overdo and pacing myself and lots of breaks. It's not that hot yet here but, you do the work when you need to do it. It has to be done so we've been working a bit everyday.

~Sia McKye~ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
~Sia McKye~ said...

LG--lol! I do use a lot of metaphors. I actually considered it but refrained. :-)

I'm not doing this job by myself, both hubs and kid (and some his buddies) have all helped. There are some projects that are mine alone as I'm the *husband* of the land, if you will. There are things I want done, things I feel are important that don't matter one way or another to my guys. lol!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Tammy--List is shortening each day. Yay!

Mark--it wouldn't be such a big wow job had we been keeping up. But...sick and all that. And working the land brings me peace. Seeing it look good, does the same.

As for new orders...Good that you can stay there another two years. I'd love to visit. If we do,I for sure will let you know!

Gina Gao said...

I've always wanted to live/work on a ranch. Might not be too fun in the summer though.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Sia,

I AM IMPRESSED. You are a true survivor. I admire a strong spirit, and you certainly have that.

Keep up the amazing work! It feels so great when our projects are accomplished.

ENJOY your downtown and DON'T overdo it...

~Sia McKye~ said...

Gina, Through my life, I've lived in suburbia and in some pretty big cities. I love living in the country and having my own land. I'm not big but I love raising table food and the peace and beauty of the land. Y'don't mind the work.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Michael--thank you for that recognition. Yes, I am a survivor and I believe in doing it with a flair and lots of laughter along the way.

It does feel good to see projects done, no matter how nasty they are. I used to tell my son and foster daughter and son when they had to do chores they didn't like. Look at this messy kitchen (for instance,and all three hated kitchen duty). Take a good look at all.

Now, tackle it.

And when they were done, I'd have them turn around and look it again--floors swept, dishes done and put away, table wiped and tablecloth reset, all the counters and appliances wiped down.

I wanted them to see what they accomplished and feel satisfied with a job well done.

Good job guys!

nutschell said...

Oh wow! Lots of manual labor. I hope you get it all sorted soon--and find time to rest, too!

Hart Johnson said...

Sounds like you are being productive! We could use a week or two like that, but this year we traveled, so it was not meant to be. And now I am writing, so it certainly isn't going to get done after work... grrr

Hope you get all you want to accomplished!

randi lee said...

I lived on a decent sized farm as a kid and I remember the lot of us working on it 24/7 (even though I was just a pup, I was still put to work!) Lots of respect for you!