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Our neighbor tells us this was a mud wallow for pigs a few years back.  That explains a lot.

It should have been obvious.  Clayton, our new town, literally translates to “tons of clay” and after a weekend like ours, I have nothing nice to say about the soil composition.  I could tell our land was mainly composed of clay while I tilled a spot for the garden.  It stuck to my shoes and the blades while I fought to tear through it.  Still, I was hopeful that the horses’ pasture would be made of a little more firm tilth.

To give you an idea just how much water is trapped in the clay, this post hole was almost full of water within an hour of being drilled.  Geesh!

We enjoyed Jack’s four day Easter weekend by getting a good start on the pasture fence.  We have been anxious to get the horses to our house now that we’ve settled in (it’s one of the main reasons we bought an acreage after all).  I made a few calls, had rock, posts and fencing dropped off and we were ready to get to work.

Jack going at it with the hand auger.

Taking cookies to our neighbors to introduce ourselves resulted in a few miraculous blessings.  One of our neighbors let us borrow their gas powered one-man auger.  It was hard work but we aren’t afraid of that.  The auger was though.  Seven posts in, a small piece on the throttle broke.  So, we decided not to waste time.  We started throwing posts out of the truck bed along the fence line so we could race to the store, get the auger fixed and continue working on the fence.

Then, the truck got stuck.

We went in for lunch, fumed a bit about the impossibly slick, sticky mud and went back out to practically pave a new driveway before getting out.

Then we pulled out the heavy machinery.

Before we were married, Jack worked long hours in concrete so not only is he a rocket scientist, he’s a rocket scientist that’s a master skid loader operator (I know–I got the best of both worlds).  In half a day, we were down to the final three post holes.  He backed up from a spot he’d briefly been trapped in before and maneuvered around it only to suddenly sink eighteen inches straight into the mud.

Having fun while daddy gets the skid loader detached from the earth.

I wasn’t much help wrangling kids while trying to push the helpless Bobcat out of the sinkhole.  Our elderly neighbor strode over and with a bit of effort and wisdom, the Bobcat popped out of the muck.

At least the girls thought it was fun playing in the ruts.

The clay gave us lots of grief this weekend but in our defense, we were unaware  In the end, however, we were victorious.  As for next time, we won’t let it get the best of us.  I sure hope.

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Welcome to the farm!

True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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