Sunday, August 7, 2011

Rainy Weekend

It was a really pleasant weekend with off and on rain on both Saturday and Sunday. During this time of year we always appreciate any and all rain that we get. For most of the southeast rain can be hit or miss from mid June through mid September. The pastures can look like springtime and be overrun with grass at this time of the year (as they are this year), or things can be looking pretty dry. Even in a dry year though the pastures have good grass, it just does not look like perpetual springtime. So far this year our pastures have been blessed with plenty of moisture. It will be time to do a third cutting of hay and another round of bush hogging in the pastures soon. No complaints here.

One year I will never forget is 2007. In 2007 Tennessee, and all of the southeast, experienced a record setting drought. 2007 set the record as the driest year ever recorded for Tennessee in 117 years of weather records. I hope to never live through setting such a record again. By mid-July we were having hay shipped in from out west and paying outrageous prices for it. The creeks were dry, ponds shrank to the size of puddles, and wells ran dry. Cattle were sold off in record numbers to the point where many livestock auctions were turning cattle away.

2007 is a year that is forever emblazoned in my memory and no doubt the memory of any farmer in the southeast. We got through it and the horses stuffed their faces with outrageously expensive hay instead of grass.

When I look at what is happening in parts of Texas and Oklahoma right now it makes our drought of 2007 look like nothing. I simply cannot imagine living through their current nightmare. In addition to the drought some areas are also dealing with day after day after day of 100+ degree temperatures.

As we enjoyed some down time during the rain this weekend I was more appreciative than normal for our rain, thinking about how badly other parts of the country need moisture. 2007 scarred me enough that I still am unable to take rain for granted anymore. When you live in an area that normally has abundant rainfall (no one ever gave a passing thought to their well going dry prior to 2007) and then you experience the opposite it does change your perspective on many things. I hope our friends in Texas and Oklahoma get some relief very soon.


Renny and Sebastian

B-Rad, Alex, Darby and Sam

Silky is napping, Missy and MyLight are hanging out nearby, Cuffie is under the tree, Fonzi is hanging out behind the fence and Silver is rolling. A busy picture!

Lily and Maisie hanging out in the shade

Cuffie in the shade

Fonzi and George having a grooming session

Silver and Gus were also grooming each other

Sebastian and Wiz

Mina, one of the World's Cutest Fainting Goats

Kennedy, Rocky, Toledo, Clayton and Stormy


Calm, Forward, Straight said...

We're having the worst drought anyone here can remember (s.e. coast), although thank goodness we have had a few (3) little rains in the last couple of weeks. Our water table was getting so low that our wells were failing as well.

Also sending good wishes for rain out to Texas and Oklahoma!

hammerhorses said...

My thoughts go out to those suffering through extreme weather right now. If you'd like a break, come to the western side of washington, we haven't broke the 80degree threshold yet in our area. While not normally a heat zone, we normally have at least 1 or 2 days of 100+ weather and at least a month of 90+... alas, early August and no heat. I will count my blessings, keep waering my sweatshirts, and be glad for our abundant green grass (although my yearling looks like a piglet right now and is on nothing but grass, ugh).

Funder said...

That's about all my dad has to say about his weather - "we're not in a drought!" He's an optimist :)

2007 was awful. I was lucky to have a handshake deal with a good hay farmer, and he kept my four horses fed with decent round bales at $60/bale. That was high for the area, but way cheaper and nicer than the feed store hay. I feel so bad for my friends in Texas!