Sunday Muse

“The calf lay shivering while Ophelia nuzzled and prodded.  Before long – twenty minutes, at most – he was trying to stand up.  I watched as he’d make his way to kneeling, then waver and crash into straw.  Ophelia was patient while he found his balance, his long legs awkward beneath him.  Finally he found a teat.  Not an hour old and he stood strong on his brand new legs, poking his snout into her.  I peered in from behind and saw the seal of his tongue against her skin: a perfect suction cup.  It took her the better part of the day to lick him clean.  By afternoon, snow was dripping from the barn roof and he lay in the straw in his fluffy black coat, fresh as if he’d just come from beneath a blow dryer.”  ~ from “Only Half” by Katie Powers, Taproot Magazine, Issue 14::Wild

In a moment of complete serendipity we stumbled on this much loved article where Katie describes her experience of first time calving and milking.  So timely as we await the spring time arrival of Tilly’s and her daughter, Tansy’s calves.  Spring and the miracle of new birth… so much to look forward to.

If you, also, happen to stumble upon this wonderful article, we were those ‘dairy kids’ she describes getting on the school bus in the second paragraph 🙂

Some Days Are Rough

“Some days I feel like crying
It don’t matter if it’s rain or shine
I feel like my heart was broken
At least a million times’
— from ‘Have it All’ by Jeremy Kay

Yesterday was a rough day.  There are times on the farm when no matter how hard you work, or how hard you try to do things right… bad things happen.  Yesterday we found Betty Lou Moo Moo and Beefcakes lying under a tree together, the apparent victims of a lightning strike.  We are so saddened… we loved those cows.  They really meant a lot to us for so many different reasons.  It is very difficult to talk about… or even think about.
Things did not go very well on the ‘peeps’ front yesterday either.  Everything went pretty well on Saturday, but yesterday morning Erma went off the deep end and had to be removed from the coop.  All but one of the peeps is going to recover.  Erma has been relegated to roosting in the barn.  Things are now going well in the coop, and Erma seem quite content to spend her time with the sheep. 

While finishing this, this advice popped up (at what seems to be just the right moment), “You know those bloggers who say “be blessed”? All fine and good but I admonish you to “be a blessing” instead; we’re all already more blessed than about most of the world’s population.”   Thank you, Sandra, just the words we needed.

‘So I try so hard to keep the rhythm of a train
Rolling right along
When the ride gets rough you got to carry on
Carry on’
— from ‘Have it All’ by Jeremy Kay

Moving to Summer Pasture

We must say that the back paddock has become a very busy and noisy place, having been invaded by 50 lambs and their mamas.  So, much to Betty Lou Moo Moo and Beefcakes relief, they have been moved to the summer pasture on the ‘almost back forty’.


They are now most happily located away from all the noise and confusion that comes with little lambs.  The grass is growing, the spring is going strong, the watering trough is over-flowing… all is now right with their world.

Just Another February Storm

Yesterday began with rain and temperatures in the 50’s but the mid-morning cold front brought gusting winds, sleet and hail.  By late afternoon the wind was gusting, the snow was blowing horizontally and wind chills had dropped to the single digits.  Samson’s buckets and dog house made an unplanned trip over the hill, many of the ewes headed into the barn and Betty Lou and Beef hunkered down in the ram pasture shelter.

The rams didn’t seem to be too concerned about much of anything and were perfectly content to hang out in the pasture despite everything that Mother Nature threw at them.

Bovine Pleasure

Scarcely a day goes by that Beef Cake and Betty Lou Moo Moo fail to bring a smile to our faces.  They now come trotting down the hill to the gate to greet us.  We then all climb back up the hill to the feeder where they are treated to a little sweet feed.  The feeder is placed at the top of the hill so that it is near their wonderful watering trough.  It was in place when we bought this property, and is snuggled into the little shaded gully.  Sometimes the simplest things bring one pleasure – Betty Lou, Beef and this lovely watering trough are often bright spots in the day.