For the small farm owner, who works full time & has horses at home
We bought a small farm in 2006 and brought 2 of our horses home in July, 2007. I love having them at home, but have learned that it is actually much harder than I expected it would be. It's not the feeding/caring of the horses that has consumed our time...it's dealing with the maintenance of our small farm. Caring for our precious horses is the easy part. (Sound familiar?)
Mowing, seeding, fertilizing, dragging the arena, etc etc...There is always a big list of projects that await us. The problem is that I work *almost* full time hours, my hubby works *more* than full time hours, we have two active kids, and so it leaves little time for rest and other household chores. Also, I don't ride nearly as much as I used to when they were boarded.
It sometimes feels like we have a second job. (Again, sound familiar?)
We finally did something about it...I have hired someone to come in and work on the weekends. He works for 5 hours on the weekend and wow, it is already making a big difference! Yesterday, he used the weed eater around my entire fence-line, mowed down an overgrown area, and cleared leaves from a large section where they get all bunched up. He worked hard, he worked fast, and everything that he did looks so nice!
Beyond his salary, we tipped him and I also made him lunch, so it was a good experience for both of us. My hubby and I can't quit talking about what's on our list for upcoming projects...
Next weekend - if it's dry out - I'm going to have him remove all of my jumps out of the arena, paint them, and give the arena a good drag since there will not be anything in it. This would have taken me all day...time away from my family, time that I need to go to the grocery or do some laundry.
In summary, this is making my farm life even better. I love it here, but now I'll be able to better balance my time.
I wanted to share this with other small farm owners to inspire you to do the same! I can't believe we have waited this long. Essentially, for the cost of one decent dinner out for our family of four, I can have someone to really make a difference in our family life every weekend.
Any other small farm owners have farm help and want to weigh in? And what kind of projects/work do you have them to do?