I have been thinking a lot about all the attention cows have been getting in the media lately. Unfortunately, it hasn't been much positive attention. From cow farts causing global warming to printing 3-D steaks, it feels like cows and those that raise cows are getting a lot of negative attention.
It is also painfully obvious that what is front and center in the news is not always the most accurate information.
There is always more to the story.
I think that one of the big issues is people don't know where to get the other side of the story. From overhearing some of my kids remote learning classes this year, I am all too aware that the top Google search is the information that is presented and believed by many.
As someone who raises cattle, I am obviously slanted toward the side that cows are good for the environment and our health.
It is also my responsibility to help others understand the other side of the story.
We have had more snow this year than we have had in quite a few years. While snow always makes farm life more difficult, it sure adds beauty to a gray winter.
I always love snow pictures...but I never have many because it is just too darn cold to go outside for a photo shoot.
I have braved the cold a few times for some very short photo opportunities...but it only takes a few minutes for my fingers to go numb and then I can't even use my camera.
The farm life is hard. Things rarely go as planned and we are always at the mercy of outside factors...and sometimes our own shortfalls.
To be honest...our jobs are not just about farming...but about being master problem solvers and always adapting to new situations.
Because...nothing ever goes as planned.
Most of you know that on December 27th, we had a late Christmas present of a new little heifer...that we named Christmas.
Everything was going great until her momma stepped on her when she was three days old and fractured her toe.
This started a whole chain of events that we thought we had all under control...until it all went south.
When Christmas was stepped on an ended up with a broken foot, the vet wanted us to give her some medication. We saw signs of stress and we weren't sure if there were any internal injuries, so the vet wanted to take some precautionary measures.
The vet sent us home with a rather large pill that we were supposed to give to the calf twice a day.
Normally, we just use a pill shooter, but Christmas was so small we weren't too thrilled with using the large pill shooter. If you have ever used a pill shooter before, you know the cows aren't always thrilled with it...and especially like to spit the pill right back at you.
So, we found another way to give the calf the pill without causing additional stress...for us or the calf.
Every once in a while, there is a complication and we find the need to bottle feed a calf.
Sometimes the complication is with the momma cow, but sometimes it is with the calf. Either way, the calf needs to eat, so the best option is to bottle feed the calf.
You can buy milk replacer at any farm supply store, but momma's milk is always better. Especially, in the first few days when you want to make sure the calf is getting colostrum.
I want a Miniature Hereford for Christmas
Only a Miniature Hereford will do
Don't want an Angus, no Scottish Highlander
I want a Mini Hereford to play with and enjoy
I want a Miniature Hereford for Christmas
I don't think Santa Claus will mind, do you?
He won't have to walk through our dirty mud room
Just bring him through the barn door
That's the easy thing to do
The holidays will look different for a lot of people this year.
This week, I will be having my company Christmas party via Zoom. I know...weird...but it is what it is.
Daniel may be having a company Christmas party...but maybe not.
The boys are now back to virtual school, so there won't be any Christmas parties or programs.
So why will our Christmas be so much different this year?
Last week we were able to travel to Louisville, Kentucky to attend the North American International Livestock Expo.
That may seem like an ordinary year for us...but this year has been far from ordinary.
After the National Western Stock Show was cancelled, we were pretty sure that NAILE would also be cancelled. However, the show was to go on.
We submitted our entries, ordered all the awards and made plans to head to Louisville. The closer we got to the show, the more the Covid numbers increased.
But, we were fortunate and the numbers in our state were low enough that we were still able to attend.
Not long after we arrived at the show, the rumors started flying that the show was going to be shut down. We had worked too hard and come too far to be shut down...again.
As our boys get older and closer to graduation, thoughts frequently turn to what they want to do with their lives after high school.
Isaac is a senior and is pretty close to pinning down a college and course of study. Isaac has always been adamant that he wants to be a farmer, but as he gets closer and closer to starting his future, he is realizing that it is virtually impossible to be a farmer without another occupation. So, his sights have turned to what he can do in life that he enjoys, but also earns enough to support his dream of farming.
Walker, on the other hand, hasn't always been too focused on a career. He wants to farm, but just hasn't settled on that dream.
Until one day...out of the blue...he said he wants to be a helicopter pilot.
Hello! I am Heather... the city girl turned mom to manure loving country boys. My husband and I both grew up in the city, but spent weekends visiting grandparents in the country. We are first generation farmers who learn best by almost always doing things the hard way. I hope you enjoy following along with our adventures down on the farm.