The Farm Report: Spring Already?

      48 Comments on The Farm Report: Spring Already?

Spring is nearly two weeks away, and a few days ago ice blanketed our property.  The temperature that day was, if memory serves, around 10 degrees.  I define that as “winter.”  So when I woke up late on Sunday and Chareva informed me daylight savings time had already kicked in, I expressed my enthusiasm with words like @#$%, and &*$%, and perhaps even %$#@.

I hate daylight savings time.  The last thing someone geared to stay up late and sleep late wants is for the clock to spring forward.  There are cruel people where I work who occasionally schedule meetings for 8:30 AM … which will now feel like 7:30 AM to my night-owl body.

I’ve heard the excuse for daylight savings time:  more daylight during the warm months, more daylight for farmers, blah-blah-blah.  A reader sent me a graphic that perfectly captures my opinion of that one:

I guess the Old Indian didn’t read Paul Krugman and learn about the “multiplier effect.”

Anyway, if you want more daylight in your day, get up earlier.  Don’t make the rest of us pretend the ungodly hour of 7:30 AM is actually 8:30 AM.  Or at least wait until May.

Despite my grumbling about the time change, Sunday did feel like a sudden jolt of spring just three days after a sudden jolt of winter.  It was 60 degrees outside, so I decided to take a walk-around look at the property.  And while I was walking around, I figured I may as well carry some plastic disc things and throw them at baskets placed around the land.

The baby chicks who arrived during the deep-freeze of a few weeks back don’t look much like baby chicks anymore.  I’d swear they’ve tripled in size already.  And we have another 12 due to arrive this week for Alana’s 4-H project. So Chareva was already out back, sketching out how she’s going to build two more hoop houses and create two big chicken yards around her gardens.

After my round of disc golf in the front pastures, I walked around the back of the property to survey the damage caused by two ice storms.  Most of the damage looked like this:

Waste not, want not.  Chareva decided we’ll cut up all the broken branches and use them to create raised beds for the garden.

The mostly-destroyed fence in the picture below was part of our pig-run, which I described in this post.

Probably just as well that we need to rebuild.  We’ve seen the pigs push their way right under a wimpy fence like this, so when it’s time to shoo them into the trailer for real, we’ll want something more substantial.  Chareva already experienced the joy of chasing runaway pigs from her garden (as in the picture below) back to their pen.  I don’t feel the need to experience a repeat.

We’ve had tire-grabbing ruts in our driveway since we moved in, but the ice storms deepened them into tire-ripping canyons.  We’ve been steering around them, which means slipping and sliding in muddy grass after a rain.

So late Sunday afternoon, Sara and I did some road construction.  We took Chareva’s garden cart down to the creek and loaded it up with rocks and stones of various sizes.  (Tennessee’s theme song is “Rocky Top” for good reason.  No shortage of rocks in and around that creek.)  Dragging a cart loaded with rocks and stones up the long, sloping driveway was real exercise – and we did it four times. We filled the canyons in the driveway with bigger stones first, then smaller stones, then rocks, then gravel on top.

Sara earned enough Cabin Cash for her cabin last fall, but now she’s into furnishing it.   She currently has her heart set on a rocking chair for reading. So even though she didn’t ask for it, I told her afterwards that she’d earned more Cabin Cash for her considerable assistance patching the driveway.

Meanwhile, I earned my first-of-the-year taste of working myself into a state of Dog-Tired Satisfied.  With all the plans Chareva has for the property this spring, there’s much more satisfaction on the way.

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48 thoughts on “The Farm Report: Spring Already?

  1. Laurie Lentz-Marino

    a little OT, but not really..Another, young, famous vegan died of cancer yesterday.

    Last night I heard on the news that the 59 year old c0-creator of “The Simpsons” died- Sam Simon. They related that it was cancer that claimed him, and that he was a proud long-time vegan.

    Steve Jobs died of pancreatic cancer, and he was a fruititarian…on purpose.

    Reply
      1. Jim Butler

        There was quite a bit of controversy when a Doctor familiar with Job’s situation stated that had Jobs sought medical attention earlier after diagnosis, he may have enjoyed more years of life.

        Reply
      2. Anna

        That’s not really fair. You make it sound as if there are hardly any meat eaters dying from cancer.

        But I get that vegans like to say that meat causes cancer, which of course it doesn’t.

        Reply
  2. Gerard Pinzone (@GerardPinzone)

    If you’re losing sleep over Daylight Saving Time, then it’s because you’re not following an ancestral sleep pattern. If you’re waking up with the sun, then DST makes no difference. In fact, DST corrects the clock to align with an ancestral sleep pattern.

    When days get longer, the sun sets later AND rises earlier at the same time. All DST does is realign the clock with the sunrise. So no. It’s not cutting a foot off the bottom off a blanket and sewing it to the top. It’s moving the “magically” growing blanket down the bed at night so that it doesn’t cover your head.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      We used to re-align the clock with the sun around the first of May. Now we re-align the clock with sun in early March. Kids around here end up waiting for the morning school bus in the dark, well before sunrise.

      Reply
      1. Bryan Harris

        I saw that either yesterday or today. While pulling out of the apartment complex parking lot I was surprised to see a little kid just standing on the sidewalk. Right next to the kid was the parent. This was around 6:30AM, and it was basically pitch dark. It was kind of awkward seeing these two standing in the dark on the sidewalk.

        In the past I’ve been a little late to work and have seen kids all in a group in that same spot. However, when that happened there was plenty of sun.

        Reply
        1. Jim Butler

          Now that the clocks have changed, it’s pitch black at my house on the Gulf Coast of Florida at 7:30am.

          Reply
  3. Scott Burgess

    Tom, I knew I liked you! I absolutely love the graphic.

    My family is heartily sick of hearing me complain about that insane thing they do around here called Daylight Savings. Around about June in this neck of the woods, Daylight Savings means it’s still daylight @ 10pm.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Some people cheer the idea of daylight at 10:00 PM. I think it’s nuts, but that’s probably because I do my best thinking after the sun goes down.

      Reply
  4. Barbara

    I agree with you, Daylight Saving Time is stupid and makes no sense. I don’t buy that we do this for the farmers because when I was younger (many decades ago) the providence of Alberta, Canada did not go on DST mostly because the farmers did not like it, something about the cows not adjusting to the new schedule. I seem to remember that the farmers of Montana complained about it too.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Farmers of all people should be able to just get up and start working earlier if they want “more” daylight. It’s not as if they have to punch the timeclock at the office.

      Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      My guess is that having it switch over in the wee hours of a Sunday is less disruptive to work schedules.

      Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Interesting. If I went to bed two hours after sunset, I’d probably be up for awhile in the middle of the night.

      Reply
      1. Firebird

        To think that if this our normal biorhythm, doctors are prescribing a lot of medications for insomnia, a disease which two sleeps seems to indicate does not exist.

        Reply
  5. Charlene Kunold

    DST always strikes me as the height of arrogance, just deciding that it’s 8:00am when it’s really 7:00am.

    Reply
    1. Walter Bushell

      We already have divided the world into hourly segments, except of China which is on a one time zone system worse. India and perhaps another company are shifted 1/2 hour from most countries.

      The one hour zones are clearly artificial and perhaps we should have 1/2 wide time zones to better match Sun time which would give the US 6 time zones or perhaps 5, but with only 1/2 hour between them.

      IIRC, accident rates go up at every transition.

      Reply
  6. Charlene Kunold

    DST always strikes me as the height of arrogance, just deciding that it’s 8:00am when it’s really 7:00am.

    Reply
    1. Walter Bushell

      We already have divided the world into hourly segments, except of China which is on a one time zone system worse. India and perhaps another company are shifted 1/2 hour from most countries.

      The one hour zones are clearly artificial and perhaps we should have 1/2 wide time zones to better match Sun time which would give the US 6 time zones or perhaps 5, but with only 1/2 hour between them.

      IIRC, accident rates go up at every transition.

      Reply
  7. Nads

    We fortunately don’t have daylight savings (in a subtropical state in Australia). All the other states do, and they say we are backward and stupid because we don’t vote for it, sheesh! The most opposition comes from the farmers. They hate daylight savings. I agree, why is it still a thing?

    Reply
  8. Nads

    We fortunately don’t have daylight savings (in a subtropical state in Australia). All the other states do, and they say we are backward and stupid because we don’t vote for it, sheesh! The most opposition comes from the farmers. They hate daylight savings. I agree, why is it still a thing?

    Reply
  9. Linda

    I definitely think, at least for me, that the two sleeps idea is the way it’s supposed to be. I’m a retired RN, and that didn’t work when I was working the ER at the hospital, but once I retired, I got rid of alarms unless absolutely necessary for a specific event. Now, I go to bed when I’m tired, and almost always wake after three or four hours. I usually grab the book on my bedside table and read for a couple of hours or till my system says it’s sleepy again. Then I sleep again for maybe three hours. I always wake refreshed and ready for the day, so obvously, my body isn’t reacting badly to this pattern. I definitely don’t like DST, so for the most part, I ignore it because I can.

    Reply
  10. Linda

    I definitely think, at least for me, that the two sleeps idea is the way it’s supposed to be. I’m a retired RN, and that didn’t work when I was working the ER at the hospital, but once I retired, I got rid of alarms unless absolutely necessary for a specific event. Now, I go to bed when I’m tired, and almost always wake after three or four hours. I usually grab the book on my bedside table and read for a couple of hours or till my system says it’s sleepy again. Then I sleep again for maybe three hours. I always wake refreshed and ready for the day, so obvously, my body isn’t reacting badly to this pattern. I definitely don’t like DST, so for the most part, I ignore it because I can.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton

      DST is clearly a plot to harass minorities. And I’m pretty sure “middle-aged guy, mostly Irish with a slice of German, difficulty sleeping until at least midnight” qualifies as minority status.

      Reply
  11. Laura

    I hate daylight saving time as well. I’m a morning person and I like having daylight earlier and I like going to sleep when it gets dark, which should be around 9 pm. As it is, I get up at 4 am and leave for work by 5:30 am and it was just starting to get light outside. Now, we are back to pitch black.

    You are going to have quite the collection of chickens. LOL. Good for you; nothing beats fresh eggs.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      DST is clearly a plot to harass minorities. And I’m pretty sure “middle-aged guy, mostly Irish with a slice of German, difficulty sleeping until at least midnight” qualifies as minority status.

      Reply
  12. Laura

    I hate daylight saving time as well. I’m a morning person and I like having daylight earlier and I like going to sleep when it gets dark, which should be around 9 pm. As it is, I get up at 4 am and leave for work by 5:30 am and it was just starting to get light outside. Now, we are back to pitch black.

    You are going to have quite the collection of chickens. LOL. Good for you; nothing beats fresh eggs.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      We beat fresh eggs all the time, usually into an omelet. I guess Chareva will be doing quite a business with her roadside egg stand.

      Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Wow, that looks appetizing. On the other hand, Squealer & Co. may have a new killer product on their hands. The amazing JULIAN … it wipes, it swipes, it holds up to detergent!

      Reply

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