Mud, Mud, Mud.

Our feet are growing webs. The rain has rained for days now, maybe weeks  – on and off  – On and off. The land drinks it all up in between squalls. farm in fields

I feel bad for California – you would think that osmosis would enable some of this water to creep across the country. Because we certainly have enough. It is the rainy season here and I know I will be grateful for all the water in the soil later in the season but right now – we need a break from the rain.

The gateways and my brains are turning to mush. farm gates


The flies are coming too, just a hint of warm and up they leap. The flies in Illinois bite, which I find quite unfair.

barn doors

Mud.  The big animals have limited time in the  good fields which is a catch 22.

cow and calf

Good to keep the fields in order, bad for the areas around the barn where the flies are breeding.  Bad for my massively depleted pile of hay.

water in barn

However for today and tomorrow there is no rain in the forecast so back into the gardens we go.

farm house

And later today I  hope that the cows can get back out too. Yesterday they had the afternoon in the fields.

dutch belted cow and calf

kunekune in field

And I really hope that you all have a lovely day.

Your friend on the farm


50 Comments on “Mud, Mud, Mud.

  1. Not sure I would be entirely happy squelching around in all that mud for very long C, then again, it could always be loads of fun.
    Have a lovely farmy day. I have been in the garden as much as possibly lately too – loving the perfect autumn weather.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  2. We haven’t had rain here in weeks! Now that we have planted all our early crops, they need water so badly! We’ve been irrigating, but there’s no substitute for a good drench. Send some our way! Your farm looks green, that’s for sure. Once the sun comes out finally, things are really going to explode! Ah well, Mother Nature has her ways…

  3. Thank God for big mercies tho’ – was saddened and shocked to see in our evening news the huge number of tornadoes right throughout the central US states, Illinois included. At least again you escaped that: the wet will end . . . hope before your hay will run out!

  4. Good morning, darling. Two short questions, c. (1) Do the flies also bite the cows and pigs? (2) My chive and vinegar mixture went cloudy overnight. Is this to be expected, or should I throw it out?

    • Throw it out, mine has never gone cloudy…was it in a dark cupboard? wonder why that happened.. and yes the flies bite the cows.. leaving blood too often.. poor things

  5. The weather is so off in so many parts of the country…the order of things is changing making so much out of whack. We had no snow in our mtns to speak of, which we depend upon for summer water…all of us along the west coast are just going to dry up and blow away come August.

  6. Biting Flies are the worst in my opinion. Okay – maybe chiggers are the worst, but a biting fly is still painful.

    You know that childhood saying “rain rain go away’ -> we need to say that here in North Texas! Flooding is something horrible here! And we have rain in the forecast for the next 7 days. Yesterday was the 1st day in two weeks we did not have any rain! Mold and mosquitoes are going to be BAD!

    • YES! I’m in Tyler and this weather is ridiculous! I think I could grow rice in my back yard right now. And poor Van (just north of Tyler), hit hard by the tornado!

  7. Finally we had some sun yesterday, and fingers crossed we’ll have a bit more today before the rain comes again. All this rain sure makes the sun very, very welcome!!! 🙂

  8. My SIL lives in Texas. They have had a 5 year drought, but the latest rounds of rains has caught them up. That’s a lot of rain, but it was needed badly.\

    My rain barrels are loving the rain and we’re prepared to water the garden if the rains ever end. My garden is too wet to plant anything, but hopefully it will dry out enough that I can get some work done before the next round of rains move in this weekend.

  9. That Tima is sure one fat pig! She certainly looks pregnant. I hope the sun shines for you all soon x

  10. Two things I don’t like… endless rain – and biting flies…. and we had both at times at our farm in Quebec, Canada. Luckily the biting flies, for the most part, don’t last all summer. But they sure can take a chunk out of you, can’t they? And often you don’t realize it until you scratch behind your ear and find blood. About rain, rain…. rain… Once I had to put boards over the mud so I could set in rows of beans…. Wishing you some lovely sunny weather – and hope your supply of hay lasts!!

  11. Sent the rain our way we really need it. I’m in the mountains and we had 6 inches of snow when we arrived. Any moisture is good .

  12. You’ll have to increase your water project to include California. I wonder if there’s something you can farm that will eat those nasty flies… 🙂

  13. Rain here in Minnesota, too, but not as much as you are getting in Illinois. I am thankful for the rain as we need it and, like you, I think of California.

    As for the flies, they were a part of life on the farm in Minnesota, too. Always battling them with fly swatters, fly strips and, I don’t like to write this, spray. That was decades ago.

  14. It is our second year here in Northern CA that we are having to down size our garden. We usually are surrounded by green grass around our house. We are just letting it go. We have the happy face on this morning. It has rained all night. and still is raining. It sounds so good on the roof. Fire season started early this year. We thinki it will be a rough year. Saw pictures on the news of many fruit and almond orchards that have died. We are blessed to get eggs from our neighbors. For most of our married life we had chickens of our own. You would be shocked. Yesterday in the store, for a dozen organic eggs the price was $5.45. Wow. Know you worry about the cost of extra feed, but be thankful for the farm (hard work and all.) For sure because of the drought prices will be going up and up. Just have to add that your pastures look wonderful.

  15. We’re having flies here that we haven’t had in years. Rain is a blessing on so many levels, but everything thrives—even the flies and mosquitoes!

  16. The photograph of what I think of as early morning mist, with a couple of white chicks, has me mesmerized; with the muted colours, I can almost smell the soil and humidity. Good to hear it’s beginning to rain at least in northern California. Let’s hope it works its way south.
    Everything looks so lush and green on the farm… that freshness that only happens in spring. I love it. The flies, however, take away some of the joy of spring, am sure… lol… I remember, as a kid at the cottage, the ‘little black flies’ that were so tiny that they got through any kind of barrier and painfully bit… and then there were the huge ‘deer flies’ that would take a chunk out too but they were only around mid-summer, as I recall. For working in the gardens can you get your hands on a few of those hats with the netting that comes down over your face and neck to protect? (I think mainly from mosquitoes)
    Hope you can keep dry! Have you too have a lovely day — Mame

    • Thy’re easy enough to make – just make a tube of fine net, thread elastic through the hem top and bottom and put it on over any wide-brimmed hat. Failing that, wear a nylon shopping bag on your head!

  17. The biting flies are the worst. I feel bad for the animals Wish there was some essential oil you could dab on you and them to keep the flies at bay. The rain held off just long enough yesterday to get my daughter’s apartment loaded and unloaded at her new one. As the last box came in, the rain let loose. The drive home was like paddling a canoe. I know that squish, squish, squish sound your feet made walking through the muddy yard. I don’t complain much though because when the heat comes, I melt into a non functioning puddle. I hope you get a bit of dry at least. I’d love to sit on the porch a bit and watch.

  18. Very funny–growing webbed feet! Raining here too, off and on, but so far we haven’t been deluged, which would mean the entire day spent disinfecting the basement. Ugh

  19. You are describing exactly what we are dealing with here in Oklahoma with the onslaughts of rain. After 5 consecutive days of rain, yesterday I got on the mower and got a very little done – trying to mow around low areas where water had not receded. Today there isn’t any sun, not a puff of breeze, and of course wet grass so I can’t mow until it’s dried. Tonight more rain arrives and will continue on into the weekend. We might be brush hogging the yard instead of mowing if this continues!! Gads!! Just keep swimming just keep swimming… (from Finding Nemo).

  20. We’ve actually had lovely weather up until Sunday and since then it’s chilly, overcast and a little rainy. It really gets me down too and I only realize it when I wake up to sunshine and feel so incredibly happy, it’s the contrast that brings it home for me. Flies bite here too but only when it’s going to rain. We have mosquitos and blackflies (at the cottage) and they are brutal. Hoping they die soon.

  21. Here in Upper Northern California we have been getting oodles of rain the past few days …supposed to keep up all week maybe ….yay! Cheers!

  22. I have been reading about different remedies for biting flies….a lot of recipes call for essential oils mixed together with water or alchohol. But you have to keep spraying and it could be expensive after awhile…however the one thing that keeps popping up is Apple cider vinegar alone or with garlic mixed in a spray bottle with water and spray your animals avoiding spraying their eyes directly of course. Also some people say they put a 1/2 cup of ACV in the water barrel it works as a fly repellent in the urine. Another remedy was a large plastic baggy filled 1/2 way with water and a penny in it, hung around door entrances and random places in your barn, this one sounds odd but a lot of people swear by it. Good luck with fly season…nasty buggers.
    Have a great day Celi !
    Robin 🐥

    • Lady Astor rears like a wild horse (incredibly dangerous when it is slippery) if anything sprays close to her but i keep forgetting to try the penny in a baggy. must try that one.. c

      • Didn’t you have something strung up in bags many posts back, a year or more maybe……in the trees near where the cows ate, they walked into them and were …..dusted?….to keep the flies off…….could do it themselves. Sunny and quite hot here one the morning chill burns off, lovely, lovely autumn, no humidity.

  23. Yup, I would say by that last photo that Tima is definitely preggers! Wonder if Lady A would just let you stroke her with a vinegar soaked sponge or cloth? She probably wouldn’t like the smell and run away or rear up anyway, so maybe not a good idea. Let me know how that penny in a baggy works..sounds crazy but you never know! Luckily we don’t have flies here…well a few but nothing like you guys have and ours don’t bite, so I feel extremely fortunate! I hate flies!

  24. Have you moved the farmy to Ireland, you know the bit that belongs to ‘themuns’ over the little pond. We had a showery day here but the rain was crazy and icy when it reached hands and faces. Celi, I think you are missing a shot….. You should be able to find a market for home grown organic mud packs. I am sure with all the nourishment it might even make my leathery skin look youthful! 😉 😉

  25. We finally got almost a half inch of rain yesterday, it was needed as the farmer’s crops are up but now there is a frost warning for tonight! Even without the rain the black flies have started. Winston came running to me, handing me his ears so I could wipe the beggars out, he’s a donkey, that’s a lot of ear and I had bloody thumbs! Last year I bought a solar fly trap from Arbico organics, it’s mostly for the house/stable flies and works so well I bought another this year. Best thing is the flies dry up and I empty it for the league of lady layers and the ducks and they have a feast!

  26. Despite the mud the last 2 photos had lovely light. Beautiful portraits of Lady A & Naomi and Tima.

  27. I do not understand why we cannot move water from here to there. It’s possible, hopefully soon it will be done.
    We had over 11 inches of rain in about 3 hours last night – then the storms began. We are lucky we live on higher lump of ground and the water quickly drains to the lake 2 blocks away. Molly was quite disturbed the neighbors black garbage bags were floating down the street and would not stop barking at them. (not a good idea to put those bags out late at night in tis sort of weather. You’ll be up early anyway with all the weather alerts going off…bleary, but up) Looks like more rain on the way. Molly fortunately is ready to hibernate for a bit.
    Hope the weather moderates a bit for you!

  28. We had a really wet spring in Italy last year, it was horrible. This year we have had little rain, which means I spend hours watering to get my plants to grow…a happy medium would be nice wouldn’t it?

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