40 Bales and a Secret Prince


People who read this website regularly and for a long time know that I used to write romance novels. There’s a somewhat amusing little piece I wrote here about typical romance novel storylines, but one of the common plots involves the man who turns up, he’s on the run for some reason–if it’s from the law, he’s innocent, of course. Or sometimes he’s a secret prince!–or a billionaire!–looking for a different life, trying to escape the trap that he’s in. He shows up at the heroine’s little shop in a small town, or sometimes on her farm, and goes to work for her while he figures out his life. They fall in love and she uncovers his secret troubles and things go all kinds of bad and wrong–followed by a happy ending!

Anyway. I’ll get back to that….. Yesterday, what showed up here was hay. Three trailer loads. Forty round bales. (And a 41st bale that wasn’t quite right and got thrown in for free.)
There’s a hay spear on the back of the tractor, but the hay man brought a front spear for us to use to unload, which makes it easier to get the bales off the trailers.
The first bale that comes off is laid down and then speared onto the back.
That makes weight to balance the tractor while unloading bales with the front spear.
I love hay. I love how it smells. The sweet grassy fragrance of winter security. That’s my boyfriend, by the way. The one running the tractor. I didn’t take any pictures of him that showed him because I hadn’t shown a picture of him on my website…. Well, not for awhile. Because you’ve seen him before, those of you who read this website regularly. He asked me if I’d taken any pictures last night that showed him and I told him I hadn’t because I didn’t know if he would be comfortable with that, now. He told me he didn’t care if I showed pictures of him or used his name. You know, again. After all, I’ve posted plenty of pictures of him and written about him by name in the past! Oh! Well then.

Back to what I was talking about in the beginning…. A man did turn up here at the farm and went to work for me–just like a romance plot! He worked for me here all last year. By day, he works for an oil and gas company, but in the evenings as a side job, he came out here and fenced and re-fenced and built and re-built and trimmed goat hooves and gave wormer shots and moved cows and farriered the horses. He installed a new gas line under the house and installed new heaters in the house and the studio. He taught me to drive a four-wheeler and a tractor, and chopped down trees and stacked firewood. He showed me how to skin and gut a deer, how to shoot my new guns, and how to hunt for squirrels. He came up with ideas and solved problems and did more things than I could ever list, and he got to know this farm better than even I do. Over the course of the year, we got to know each other and became friends and I got to where sometimes I even made up reasons for him to come out here. He cleaned out my cellar and reorganized it and turned it into the “woman cave” cellar bar, and spent a lot of time in the cellar bar with me, talking after finishing up work around the farm. And he wasn’t on the run from the law or a secret prince, but he was ready for a change in his life–and for me.

Next time I’m out taking pictures, I won’t hide his face.
His name is Rodney. He was one of my hired men last year. And now? He lives here.

P.S. It was nearly dark by the time we got as much of the hay covered as we had tarps and plastic to cover.
We’ll try to get the rest covered by tonight if it doesn’t start raining on us before then!


  1. Ag Adventure says:

    Congratulations! I found my “Price Charming” (or is it Prince Farming?) on FarmersOnly, and I have to say, using the knowledge and ability to build a fence as a qualifier has led me to the happiest two and a half years of my life.
    There is nothing like having a man around who loves the same things as you do, and who likes to work on the same projects.
    It sounds like you have a great one. So happy for you!

  2. Hlhohnholz says:

    Welcome to the family, Rodney!! Suzanne….Congrats. 🙂

  3. got-2-race says:

    Congratulations. I love the smell of fresh cut hay, people think I am crazy when I roll down the windows and breath it in. I’m a farm girl and the city girls never understand.

  4. doodlebugroad says:

    All in due time – I’m happy for you that your time has come.
    Revel in this blessing!

  5. cabynfevr says:

    Hoping only the best for you and your new (?) beau! I have a question about your round bale feeding. Do you err on the side of caution and give your horse botulism shots? I just recently heard of them and wondered if it was common.

  6. angiemay says:

    So very happy for you and Rodney 🙂 At least you have taken the time and worked together to get to this point. Glad you have someone 🙂

  7. ClaudiaL says:

    Oh! (July 11th post, that I somehow missed) He’s handsome! Welcome Rodney! So glad that you are here, or have been here…We love Suzanne.
    Maybe there’s hope for me…a 62y/o overweight, but farming animal lover…I’ll have to check out farmers only, because I don’t get off the farm much, and that’s to hang out with a bunch of women! :yes:

  8. Joell says:

    “Loves comes softly” :snuggle:

  9. beforethedawn says:

    Oh Suzanne!!! Good for you girl!! He sounds like a keeper! Oh yeah and the hay is wonderful too. :-p

  10. Nancy in Savannah says:

    I’ve had trouble getting back into your blog since I moved to Savannah from Iowa in 2013, but here I finally am! I’ve still followed you, just couldn’t comment. Congratulations on the fantastic man in your life – isn’t that what a helpmate is all about?

  11. sesamekaren says:

    Congratulations on finding your prince! I looked at the July 11th pic……there are three men! Can someone tell me, which is the lucky guy? Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness!!!!

  12. sesamekaren says:

    Joell……those birds remind me of Suzannes guest room!!

  13. yvonnem says:

    :snoopy: :snuggle: :heart:

  14. DeniseS says:

    There were old posts where you would mention that the only good man was a hired man. Now, I think at that time your train of thought was in a different direction making this comment, but in the strange turn of events life can be…. well it turned out that the good man turned out to be the hired man who turned into your beau. This turn of events makes me smile. So happy for you two!

  15. cinderbama says:

    Thank heavens. It’s about time a good guy came riding into your life (on a white horse OR a tractor, whatever it takes!). You sound so happy, and I am so glad for you!

    Now I have a couple of questions. I went home (our family home in Alabama) recently to discover our fields are covered in thistles. Do you have them up there? I have to get rid of them but they are everywhere. Anybody have any suggestions?

  16. cinderbama says:

    Oh, and let me just add that I don’t know any hired men like yours to call. Wish I did! LOL

  17. ticka1 says:

    how many round bales you going to store for winter? and yesvwhen you start poating hay pictuesbi know thatnisnt far away!!!! gald you have a beau and yall were friends first!

    • Suzanne McMinn says:

      That’s it for round bales. We’ll get in some square bales later, not a whole bunch, somewhere between 50 and 100.

      Cinderbama, yes, we have thistles here. I just have them weedeated down before the thistles form, to try to keep them from spreading, but the fields really need to be brush hogged. I’m hoping we can get a brush hog this year.

  18. jodiezoeller says:

    OMG…. sounds great that he knows his way around your farm. BUT listen to your kids and family and friends because they might see something that is off about him before you realize it. YOU MUST BE CAREFUL. Have fun too but I worry about your heart. It’s been hurt a few times. Go gently into this relationship and be sure he’s a good guy that walks the walk not just talks the talk. LOVE all the latest photos of the cows, horses, hay etc. I have been so busy lately that I hadn’t read your posts in a month! Love you all. Hope Morgan is having a fantastic summer home from college. How are the boys (men) doing now? Maybe I’ve missed updates. Ross must be ready to come home from his tour of duty on the sub. And Weston just got started. Good luck!

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