Monday, July 11, 2016

Gathering Wheat (With A Cradle)- Make Hay While The Sun Shines





When I saw my Dad recently, we went for a drive.  He lives out in the country and there were lots of fields with fresh bales of hay.  "Make hay while the sun shines", I said.  He replied, "That's right! You can't make hay in the rain!"   Funny, if you look this up, you will find that many pithy proverbs are in other languages but this one seems to be limited to English, it is noted from 1546!

Whan the sunne shinth make hay. Whiche is to say.
Take time whan time cometh, lest time steale away.



One thing that truly surprised him, we saw several fields of wheat and the wheat had been rolled up just like the bales of hay!  He told me that he had never seen anything like that in his life. 

Later, I reminded him of the wheat and he told me the following:
When he was ten years old, it is was his job to collect the wheat from a five acre field.  He used a wheat cradle and he said it took him a couple of weeks to collect it all. (You might think I typed his age incorrectly but 10 years old would be correct. Farming is very hard work and the children were put to work early. Daddy has always been a very hard worker.)  
These yellow flowers turn into yellow squash! 


We have finally talked our Dad into having a smaller garden this year! When you get to your late 80's, it might be time to take it a little easier! This year, he planted a whole acre of sunflowers! Since we had very little rain at the beginning of the growing season, they didn't grow very tall, but their sunny faces are blooming now. 
Beautiful!  (Must tell you though, Daddy still has a "small" garden, by his standards anyway, growing cherry tomatoes "tommy toes!",
yellow squash and onions!)  He might not be growing his potatoes this year but I still have some that he canned, and they taste so very good!




My Dad has taken that expression to heart, "Make hay while the sun shines"!



29 comments:

  1. You know your Dad is the best!!
    Good idea to downsize a little, he truly deserves some rest, having worked (and still working) so hard all his life. But it also does keep him going, doesn't it.
    I like the idea of him planting so many sunflowers, especially since the Sunflower Festival you wrote about in the past seems not to have come back.

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    1. You know I agree with you, my Dad IS the best!
      We knew he would have to still grow a few things but we are really glad he downsized his garden. We have had so little rain, it would have been really hard to keep all his plants watered!
      You know, I really miss the Sunflower Festival. I am working on getting a video on my YouTube channel, so I can share it on my blog!

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  2. It is definitely good to make hay in many ways isn't it! I hope that your Dad enjoys making lots of hay! xx

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    1. We do wonder about the bales of wheat, why are they done that way now? See, that is what my Dad is like, he is very curious!

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  3. Yep you do have to take advantage of a good day while it's here. I love sunflowers. We usually have a few volunteers show up here but it would be great to see a whole field of them.

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    1. Funny you should mention volunteers! My Dad had bought several squash plants and they were doing just fine, but he had some volunteers that came up from last year, and they did better than the ones that he bought! It tickled him!
      I hope to get a photo of his sunflowers but they didn't grow very tall because of very little rain.

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  4. Your father is amazing. My father began life as a farmer, and only gave up gardening at age 91 when he went into residential care. It sure keeps them healthy and fit!

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    1. There must be something to it, out in the open air and growing things in the earth. Hard work, I know, but something to be proud of, I am sure.
      OH! And I have gotten my Dad interested in feeding the birds on his deck. He loves his "redbirds", so I had to tell you that! xx

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  5. Gardening is great exercise for those who can grow things, i'm glad he is still active!

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    1. He seems to have a good attitude about aging. He should give lessons!

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  6. Love those squash blossoms!

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    1. Stands to reason that such a flower would turn into something that tastes good! I love okra flowers too!

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  7. Your Dad is an inspiration. And it is not only in agriculture that "make hay while the sun shines" applies. It's good to not pass up opportunities when they present themselves.

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    1. Oh yes! Did you see the bit I had by itself...Take time when time cometh, lest time steale away. Don't you love that!
      But I also love that the expression itself comes from a truism from farming!

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  8. Yes, farm kids in those days started working young! My Dad (who, if living, would be about 10 years older than your Dad) grew up on a family farm too in the Depression.

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    1. The Depression was very hard on those who lived through it but it also made them very strong, don't you think? I admire them so much, if you remember my posts about Louis Zamperini, he said we should call his generation, the HARDY generation.
      I really miss Mr. Zamperini!

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  9. Your Dad certainly sounds like a real worker. He also sound "very lovely."
    Oh my - the trouble I had with the word Squash when I first went to America many years ago. All I wanted was a glass of orange squash! I can tell you I got some very weird looks. Bear in mind this was some 40 years ago and I was in Georgia. I finally asked our Georgian friend - "Why dont they understand? All I want is a glass of orange squash. She cracked up and said it was a bit difficult to get a whole squash in a glass - try Gatoraid!! I am sure the spelling is wrong - but I am sure you understand.
    And we are both supposed to speak English!

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    1. My Dad would laugh at being called "lovely", but you are exactly right, he certainly is!!
      So funny! I was just the same when I was first in England and laughed when I found out squash was a nice little orange drink (no alcohol) that I could get in a pub. Oh yes, I know Gatorade, it is not as good as the orange squash you have over there! xx

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  10. Replies
    1. And if you notice, my Dad PAYS ATTENTION. He was the one who noticed the bales of wheat, not me. Once he pointed it out to me, I realized he was right, we had never seen that in the fields in the area. Daddy also keeps up with the latest news, he is quite the interesting guy!

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  11. I would love to see his field of sunflowers.

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    1. I hope to take a photo of his sunflowers. If I make him stand in the middle of them, he will be outstanding in his field!
      HA!!!

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  12. Kay, It would be so nice if you show a picture of your father's sunflowers. I love to see fields of them. I have seen a few around here. I like when you talk of your father. Blessings to all, xoxo, Susie

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    1. I was just there last week and wouldn't you know it, I didn't have my camera! Hopefully, I will get some to share on here for you! Hope all is well with you and you are having a lovely summer xx

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  13. It's what I say when I have let my lawn go too long without mowing. I like old stories like the one's your dad has. When I was a young pastor my people in their 80's and 90's always liked me, because I could sit for as long as they wanted to tell me their stories.

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    1. Sadly, many of my older friends and relatives are no longer with us and I miss them and their stories.

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  14. There are a few variations of that saying. I think the one I know best is "strike while the iron is hot". To be honest I'd never really heard the sunshine one before. I hope your dad enjoys his smaller garden and still gets a lot of use out of it.

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    1. I guess I come from a country background and that is why I have heard it so often. You must be descended from royalty or something, not common like me! :-)

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