Thursday, June 30, 2011

Field Work

As you've probably noticed by our schedule, our family has taken a few months off the road for a 'sabbatical' of sorts. We were earnestly praying for future direction this spring and the Lord was so good to confirm a season of 'home-time' for our family -- a rare occurrence during these past eight years. He also provided an amazing way to make provision for this season: field work!

The past two months have found us spending long, hot hours in the Nebraska sunshine as we've installed in-ground irrigation systems for farmers. There's just something about good, honest, hard work that is refreshing, rewarding, -- and yes, exhausting! And that has been the story of our spring.

A few weeks ago, Kori joined us in the fields to work -- and to capture much of the installation work with her camera. [Thanks, Kori!]

So here's just a glimpse of a typical day in the fields:

First, Josiah digs through the field with a massive trencher, creating a 4ft deep trench just about as far as the eye can see. I wish I had a picture of him with that massive machine. Totally impressive!

Then, we glue miles of water-supply pipe together and lay it in the trenches, ready to attach to the irrigation tapes already run through the field via another big machine.

We lay out the 'goose-necks' which will attach to the pipe and flow the water directly to the irrigation tape.

Ruth drills a hole in the pipe at every irrigation tape...

...and installs the small, rubber grommet.

Elizabeth installs the goose-necks into the pipe.

Stephen hacks away at the trench wall to uncover the irrigation tape.

Yeah, so thankful for such strong, amazing brothers!

I use a handy cutting tool to measure the correct distance, trim if needed, and slide the tape over the goose-neck.

Behind me, Kori or Matthias will attach a metal wire around the splice and tighten it down -- and the trench work is complete!

At various intervals in the field, there are zone spits, drains, and various, intricate pipe-work projects that need assembled. Usually Dad works on these while we're in the trench.

And finally, Matthias is typically the project manager and oversees all the 'zones', 'splits' and supplies. He keeps us motivated and somehow still manages to work faster and harder than the rest of us!

Have you ever noticed that many hands make light work?! Or maybe its just the fact that working with great friends is always fun! *smile*

A few more random pictures:

Andrew drives the mini-excavator across the field.

Yeah, he runs a cool machine, too.

The newlyweds

Nothin' like working together, right?!

Oh yeah!


The best time of the day -- LUNCH!

And this was a unique job. The trench was filled with 2 - 3 feet of water. And mud. And slime. And yes -- we waded through that guck to hook up the pipes. We were a mess and made enough memories to last a long time! [Sadly, it was the day after these pictures were taken, so I don't have pictures of the process. But believe me -- we were MUDDY!]

Trying to measure the mud depth.


Getting ready to head back in the trenches.

Trying on the guys' boots.

Re-filling Ruth's supply apron.

More digging


We so enjoy every opportunity to work together!

And that's a summery of our Spring. Yep, lots of new experiences, but its been good! Installation season is over due to the growing crops, so for the month of July the guys will be working painting jobs as we all practice and prepare to head out on tour again in August. Check out our updated schedule and be watching for updates as we book the remainder of 2011!

"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity."
Psalm 133:1


Joseph said...

Great pictures! You all look like you're having so much fun working together! You're right there is nothing better than working in the dirt with the family. That's when having a large family pays off, many hands make light work! :) I love your blog, keep up the good work!

Arnie said...

Wonderful pictures Miss Rachel! Solomon said the sleep of a working man is sweet. You all must sleep very sweetly after the hard days you have been putting in!!!

guess who said...

I have 1 request for the scheduling. PLLEEAASSEE be home in December!!! ;) Fun post! <3

Spencer Rothfuss said...

What a neat project!
How many acres do you have to lay pipes in?

Can't wait to see you guys on the 3rd!

Trini said...

MAN, ya'll have been busy!!! Great photos! It was so weird seeing the girls in pants...

Rachel said...

Spencer --
I really don't know how many acres we've covered over the summer. You'd have to ask the guys when you see them on Sunday! I do know that we laid over 5 miles of pipe at a single jobsite. So its been *allot* of acres!

Trini --
LoL! Yeah, for us, too. But considering the fact that we spend the days climbing in and out of those trenches, pants were really the best option! *smile*

Thanks for the comments everyone!

JoyfulJewels4Jesus said...

Sounds like you have been very busy and diligent!! It's so neat seeing you all working together as a family, having a nice time together. Blessings!!

With Joy in Christ,

Talitha said...

Wow! Hard work is exhausting, but as you said, so rewarding. I love seeing a job well done!

I totally agree with you about the pants-- they definitely seem more suited for that job. I would definitely put some on for a project as hard and dirty as that.

Good work!

Marjolaine Belley said...

You are such an inspiring family-it's neat to see how much work you all cheerfully do together!
Thanks for the interesting post!

Schumachers said...

WOW! Looks like lots of work. I know what you mean, Work is fun when you do it with friends. Have a good 4th of July and a great rest of the summer.
Love, Mindy

Guinevere said...

Looks like hard work but it's nice to see a family looking so happy working together! You guys look like such good friends!

"just another girl..." said...

Hot, sticky, rewarding business is what it looks like. And you chose to have fun...but who couldn't with all that mud:)

And, you look very *warm* in those jeans. ( I would say "hott", but that isn't really appropriate for this blog I don't

And did Elizabeth really wear the guys' boots? Wouldn't they be too big for her?

And why does Stephen have his hat on backwards? Isn't the purpose of a hat to shade your face from the sun? Someone needs to teach that kid a thing or two...jk!
Thanks for posting:)

Our Army of Six said...

Wow! What a great, great team to work with! I think that would actually make this job "FUN"! I loved this post and learned something new!

Anonymous said...

Wow!!!! That looks like some work!!!!
----Did my eyes just see correctly though??? are you girls actually wearing pants??. Why are none of the younger ones in pictures????!!!!