Sunday, October 19, 2014
31 Days from a Tractor Seat Questions Answered
The kids are in bed after a full day of Sunday School, working in the field and baths, but before I indulge in some ice cream and Food Network Sunday night programming, I thought I'd continue my 31 Days of writing adventure by answering some of your questions I have received through this blog series.
What things do you see from your tractor seat besides just fields and rows? We see wildlife (which I'll be talking about more in a future question), traffic (those that wave and those that don't), and we have a nice above ground view that allows us to see for miles. The most exciting (and scary) thing we've seen this year so far is a car fire.
Do animals and birds know to leave the field during harvest time? Just like if there was a vehicle coming down the road, birds and animals run out of the way of tractors. In fact, I think they move a little faster since we are a lot bigger than a car. We don't worry about running over any wildlife.
What animals do you typically get in your fields? Typically we see birds, pheasants, ducks, deer, rabbits, and ground squirrels. The corn and soybean fields are great hiding areas for these animals so we scare them out of the field when we come through. They then run to a neighboring buffer strip or waterway for protection.
How do you deal with your kids while you're in the tractor (naps, play time, feeding them, etc.)? The kids do a pretty good job in the field all day. Our day typically starts mid-morning so the kids are able to eat breakfast and get some playtime done before we head to the field. Each kid gets to pick out some toys and books to bring in the tractor. Think of packing a busy bag for church, except it is for the tractor :) The kids enjoy playing with the things they bring with them throughout the day but also simply enjoy watching out the window, singing songs, having a conversation, playing peek-a-boo, telling stories, etc. I guess one way to think about our day in the tractor is the same you'd think about a day in the car traveling on vacation. The kids eat, sleep and play in their seats.
As for food, we eat dinner around noon, then usually have snacks in the late afternoon and eat supper at the end of the night from the comfort for our tractor seats. I keep a cooler with waters and juice boxes for the kids with me so they are always able to eat or drink when they'd like to throughout the day. We usually end our day in the field after supper, and every once in awhile, we will take our supper home to eat, rather than eat it in the field.
As for naps, the kids naturally take naps in the afternoon when they usually would. However, I'd say that MP naps shorter in the tractor then she does at home and LP, who usually naps only once or twice a week while at home, probably naps four or five times a week while in the tractor. The hardest part for the kids in the tractor all day is that they have to sit for long hours. Anytime we have a breakdown in the field I let the kids out to run around and usually after their afternoon naps I'll let them have a break while I have some wait time before needing to get back to catch the combine with my tractor and catch cart.
When is the best time for your family to vacation? Our busiest times in the field are during the spring when we plant and during the fall when we harvest, so those are out for vacation time. And there is usually quite a bit of field work done during the beginning of the summer, so that too is usually not an option. We also raise pigs who need attention all year long, so we have to make sure whenever we do go on a vacation, that someone (aka my father-in-law) is available to do our chores for us. We typically enjoy going on family vacations in the late summer and My Farmer and I like to get away for a weekend in the winter.
What other questions do you have about my life in a tractor seat or as a farmer and farm wife? Remember to Comment for a Cause!
(This post is a part of a 31 Days from a Tractor Seat series. The best way to keep up with this series is to follow via email on the right sidebar of this post or by following on Bloglovin. Also be sure to like the Corn, Beans, Pigs and Kids Facebook page for daily updates from the field.)