Tuesday, December 22, 2015

A Muddy Christmas

Wit is the only wall
Between us and the dark.
          Mark VanDoren

“It looks like it is going to be a green Christmas” the weatherman proclaimed. There were probably cheers, from those who knew that they would not have to battle the weather, only to get to where they were heading. Then, those winter sports enthusiasts no doubt gave a loud sigh, at least in this part of Ontario. Merry Muddy Christmas, I thought to myself.

Well, if you are a farmer, this year you may very well have been doing a little cursing instead of wishing, as of late. This December has made it a real “Chore” to do the chores. It must be worse than I even thought it was. Yesterday my conversation with Bossy2 and Red revolved around the possibility of rubber boots to go with their hats. That would be a lot of rubber boots.

Back, to those daily chores. Every morning I don my ‘Pink Cadillac’ rubber boots and a rain jacket over top of my coveralls on those days that it rains. This has turned out to have been most days this December. This morning it was so warm though I did not need rain gear and silly me, did not even bother to roll up those legs of my coveralls.

We are very lucky that we can feed our cattle basically anywhere, so I have always moved them around so that they are never unless they want to, of course, standing in water or mud. That was another reason that I wondered why Bossy2’s pushing for rubber boots.

I fed the cows as usual. This year “swimming” to open the gate to drive in to pick up the round bales of hay. OK maybe not “swimming” but definitely wading. My coverall bottoms were covered in mud in a matter of seconds. Not a good plan. It had rained all last night again, so I should have thought of that. I left a trail of tractor tread ruts, a deep trail to the bales and then back out of the field. Feeding four bales a day means two trips on this muddy trail, every day. Deeper and deeper it gets with every one of these strange winter days. I have to say I am getting a little nervous thinking of the day I am sinking not driving, then sitting and phoning a certain Hero I know. “Help” oh yes I can see it coming.

This morning I had to unload some special salt blocks from the Jeep. We feed our cows these blocks when it is extremely wet. It gives them extra vitamins, including a copper supplement that gives them extra protection. Protection, from getting problems with their hooves which is not something you want them, nor you, to have to deal with. This would be mainly for the ones who choose to stand in the puddles not avoid them.

I finished feeding the girls, and then went to say “Hello” to our very own hat wearing Red and her little gift. There behind her stood a little red bull that she was very anxious to show off. He had just been born so he was still wet. Still “cute as a button” I would say, wouldn’t you?

Anyway, after welcoming him into the world I went to put the salt blocks in the big container for the cows. Driving over to it I could immediately tell that this was not going to be an easy or a dry task. It was sitting in the middle of a lake. I had to move it. I pulled out My Hero’s gloves, and then I climbed down from the tractor.

Well as you can see, that did not turn out as well as I had hoped. I stood in the deep cold muddy water struggling and then finally had that stainless steel container and the old tractor tire loaded on the bucket. I pulled those stuck in the mud Pink Cadillac Boots out and then fished out those floating leather gloves from the water, all the time cursing the weatherman. I do know that was not fair but who else was there to blame? Higher ground was found.

So when you are dancing in the rain, and celebrating the holidays during this green Christmas think of all those farmers who are stuck in the mud. Possibly singing (that may have been me) “We wish you a muddy Christmas”. I was also wondering about, what size of boots Bossy2 and Red would need.

Merry Christmas from all of us here on the farm, to all of you. Enjoy the season. I will see you back here in the New Year.



  1. When having animals this mud is horrendous . Honestly I love the warmer temps but snow would be so much nicer for all kinds of reasons when one has animals . Our Miggs has to be hosed down and towel tryed practically every time she comes in , I can imagine what it must be for your farm in this muck ! Hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year ! Sun is shining here now WOOHOO !!

  2. Sigh. I hope you get some snow.
    And a very Merry Christmas to you and yours.

  3. Oh no, so sorry about all that mud! I love the cow photos, they are all so cute. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  4. sweet little red bull. but i love that last photo. the weather extremes are getting more and more 'the norm'.

  5. Those little one are tough being born outside and all wet. I hope the rain stop and the mud puddles are reabsorbed in the soil. Mud puddles are no fun...

    I've had 5 new calves this past week and I have two more heifers in the calving pens. I was baking my Christmas meat turnovers and had to go check on a cow and I had a gut feeling she was calving around 10:00 PM. When I got there she had just given birth and wouldn't get up. We were in the barn till 11:30 that night and I came home, washed up and continued my baking till 1:00A.M. Farming is a tough job.

    Wishing you a Merry Christmas.

  6. Ugh, mud! I' glad we aren't pushing snow or thawing water pipes,but mud and warm weather aren't great either! Merry Christmas to you and your family, and welcome to the world, little one! He's a cutie!

  7. Mud!! Yes, I remember how much I hated the stuff when I had my ponies! Have a wonderful Christmas B!

  8. I have been wondering how you and your Pink Cadillacs have been faring. They must be several shades of Muddy Brown. I hope that in spite of it all, you, your Hero and the Girls (and new Young Bull) have a wonderful Christmas. It was likely a little muddy in that stable on the First Christmas all those years ago. You'll get through it. Hugs, C.

  9. Muddy is not good. Stay safe.

    Merry Christmas.

  10. No snow, oh dear!
    Merry Christmas my friend. Hugs M xoxox

  11. Oh dear, mucking around in mud does not sound great for you or your critters.

    Love your new little bull and the sweet one in the last photo. Plus your hats perched on heads, a real hoot and gives them such character.

    Have a lovely Christmas ~ FlowerLady

  12. You end up on a cheerful note. Merry Christmas to you. Maybe you're looking for some frost to harden up the ground. Maybe that's what you want for Christmas.

  13. i know we both want snow for christmas, we are getting tee shirts here at the jersey shore. but it's ok, in my heart, it will be snowing and i always have the dvd i can watch!!!!

    merry christmas buttons, have a joy filled holiday!!!!

  14. B,

    Merry Christmas To You and Your Hero, and a Happy 2016!!!

  15. Merry Christmas to you Buttons. I hope we get into more normal weather patterns soon.

  16. Oh my! That does look like a mess. Better get those girls some boots! I bet they'd like Pink Cadillacs, too. Enjoyed your previous "Scrabble" post. It is a favorite game of mine, daughter and some of her kids. We've made lots of fun memories over that board, as well. It's amazing the things kids can remember YEARS later.

  17. Yup, brown and green here too. Wishing you bright, white merry days ahead so you can dust off your snow shoes! Happy Christmas to you and yours!!

  18. Merry Christmas to you too and all your hat wearing critters and their babies.
    We have been having RAIN and then more RAIN. It is miserable and squishy here. But we live through it because we CAN!
    Happy New Year too.

  19. Just stopping by to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas!

  20. Sounds like more of a Brown Christmas! I am more of a White Christmas person, given I love the quiet and brilliance of a snow-covered landscape. However, it is nice to not have to worry about heating the house. Still...hoping you have a white winter, Buttons! LOVE that darling red bull calf!

  21. Sorry to hear the reports of your torments. In Saskatchewan, it has been cold and relatively dry, though we do have some snow. (I'm reliably informed you may be getting some of that today. But maybe not.)

    Blessings and Bear hugs to you, Buttons, your Hero, the girls, and the young bull. (Thats no bull on my part!)

  22. This weather is crazy! I hope it freezes or dries up soon. I hope your Christmas was cozy. I wish you a happy and less muddy new year.

  23. I'm stuck in the mud too, I don't think I can even get out of here, except to put the Jeep in the lowest 4WD, which is a drive I am not strong enough to get out of. On the shift box, I mean, so I'm staying in. After reading this though, I said to myself, I will not complain, I will think of Buttons and the rest of the farmers who have to deal with this on so much a deeper and more difficult level than I. All the best for the New Year to you and your Hero!

  24. Our weather has been so cold. Then in different parts of the world it's warm. That El Nino is changing things up a bit this year eh? I feel for you and the mud. Don't work to hard, remember safety first girl and I'd hate to see you hurt yourself or get sick....

  25. Hi Buttons!!! I hear you got some nasty weather today - hope all is well! I missed you - I will be making a more concerted effort to visit more often :) Hugs!!!!! Mandi

  26. I hope the rain has let up and that it is drying up a little bit..

  27. Hope you dry out! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! :)


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