Starting our Herd-- an exciting 24 hours


first minutes of cows- May 2010.jpg
Our first cows- May 7, 2010

I came home from St. Paul to a great sight last night-- our very first cows. Five of them. As you can imagine, the farm was in an a state -- the cows running around the lush green pasture for the first time in a long time and the kids running around "with" them. They are a breed of cattle called Dexters. Compact, triple duty cattle- milk, meat, and draft animals.

This morning while the family slept I made coffee and walked out the door to go for a walk. I wanted to get up close to the cattle. I noticed something wasn't right. One of the cows was down. I thought it was the smallest one who had suffered from bloat before we bought her. Then I looked again and counted 1-2-3-4-5-6. Huh? 1-2-3-4-5-6! We have our very first calf.

So now I am working very hard on my dairyman husband to start milking that momma for me. Oh- think of the fresh milk, butter, yogurt, cheeses!!! I talked to one of my colleagues yesterday about getting my breast pump back. Think that will work?

May 2010 baby calf 013.JPG
Our first calf May 8, 2010


Cool! No, lawn mowing for you. Or I should say Mike.

What fun, what JOY! Is it okay if I have a bit of envy for your solice on the farm?
Beware, sometimes Mother cows are very protective of their babies....Bev

Kell- Mike has mentioned in passing that they are expensive lawn mowers.

Bev-- Yes- it is such joy and solice to be on this farm and building a farm life for our family.

Yesterday I was in the laundry room getting ready for company and the reflection in the mirror showed not just my face, but my beehives and the six cows in the pasture. It was such a warm and happy feeling.

Last night just before putting the kids to bed I stood out on the front porch. The geese were honking, pheasants calling, the cows were close (the pasture is right up to our front porch!), the sun was setting brilliant on the western prairie. I walked back in the house, kissed Mike and said "this is the life I've always dreamed of."

Nice to feel so content-- at least for a few hours :-)


I started milk feeding newborn calves that I bought from the sale barn or from neighbors during the 80's (when everything was bad) and I swear this having cattle and calves around depending on you does somthing to you. There so calming to be around. Teaching a newborn calf how to drink from a pail is a real reward.
One time this buyer (Edwin M.) dropped some off-Just got them soo cheap-. I was feeding milk replacer in the front end and when I turned around it was coming out the other end the same color. Not Good!! (Keep the Electrolites handy!!)

There you go. Beth's Dad Orrin used to raise 4-5 head a year with neighbor Earl Weinman, who had enough grass around his farmsite. Then some grain near the end to add marbling. My neighbor here in Eastern MN names his few feeders "T-Bone" and "Filet" to avoid sentimentality and keep the function in focus. Last Memorial Day when we stopped by I visualized this scene and here it is. More Sweet Land.

Congratulations!! What a fabulous surprise.
We are novice farmers and acquired our first cows last spring (a Dexter and her steer calf, and a Jersey steer calf.) Last week we got a family milk cow (Jersey-nilking shorthorn mix) and have been learning to hand milk. We are so slow but she is so patient). We have dived into making make butter and cheese; next is ice cream. I LOVE LOVE LOVE these cows.

What fun for you and Mike, and for the kids! I'll bet they are excited! Always loved cows...enjoyed the milking (except the times I got a tail swish in the face)... and loved the calves and their wonderful, scratchy tongues!

Couldn't have said it better. Nice to see someone who knows what they're talking about.

Now that's some lush grass, right up to the belly of that young'un!
What kind of grass did you seed in your pastures?

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This page contains a single entry by Kathryn Draeger published on May 8, 2010 3:48 PM.

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