Rain at last!

We have had some pretty extreme weather over the past several months…from record snowfall over the winter, to record high temperatures for the month of May and record low amounts of rainfall for our spring…it sure makes farming that much trickier!  The pastures have been crispy, and the baking sheep looked at us a week ago as if to say, “What happened to spring?!”

This week temperatures are dipping into the 50’s, perhaps in an effort to average out the temperatures from last week.  We actually turned the heat on briefly in the car this morning!  Rainfall is plentiful so far this week, and we are watching for the pastures to start to return to their normal “spring” green vs. the recent “peak of summer” browns we’ve been seeing…

The seeds and seedlings in the garden don’t know quite what to do.  It seemed like it took a while for our spring to warm up, and then BAM!  We got hit with summer heat and humidity.  We were waiting for the soil to warm up to plant seeds, then suddenly it was almost too warm for the cool crops – peas, spinach, etc.!

But for now we are getting a much needed soaking, and with that comes a need for raingear for everyone.

Umbrellas just DO NOT survive long around here.  The winds that usually accompany the rain just rip them apart, and it’s hard to do chores while holding onto an umbrella to begin with, let alone one that is trying to take flight!

Gortex is expensive, and only lasts so long.  This is where the Aussies really got things right.

Before we left Australia over 20 years ago, we invested in three Drizabone oilskin coats.  We bought them more for the “Aussie” look vs. for practical reasons at the time.  Little did we realize back then that eventually our sons (or anyone else who needs them!) would be putting them to good use on our very own sheep farm!

These coats rank right up there with Carhartt as far as excellent workwear goes!  They are a waterproof canvas coat, impregnated with a waxy, oily protectant.  The oil wears off over time, and today it was time to re-proof one of the short coats we own because it just wasn’t holding back the rain anymore.

First I heated the can in a pan of boiling water to liquify the waxy protectant.  Then it was just a matter of spreading it liberally over the exterior of the coat, especially applying it to seams.  Then I just heated up the coat with a hair dryer (the sun would have been nice, but there was none of that to be had today!) while I rubbed it in to make it uniformly black and oily.
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Voila!

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One down, two more to go!

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