Milking update

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Today Dottie was waiting for us at the fence wanting to be milked. That’s about as good as it gets. Day four and she is in the routine. We got a little less than 2 gallons of milk today which is still in line with her expected production considering all the factors like stage of lactation and season, etc.

Above you see the milk mobile. This is the Goldbergs golf cart that they bring every day rain or shine for morning milking. They debated taking the golf bag holders off originally but they worked out perfectly to hold the milk buckets every day. Plus they occasionally hold a child or two for a ride around the farm.

Today we began a new milk distribution system where instead of splitting each days milk, one family takes the milk one day, the other takes it the next day. So today we got the whole two gallons plus the gallons we already have in the fridge.

Looks like its time for yogurt and butter at the Ninja house.

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Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


Merry Christmas

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And so it begins.

Spork and Bok Bok putting their favorite ornaments on the tree. And when I say tree, I mean redwood because SWMBO picked a 14′ tree. Now I know what you are thinking. Why in the world did she get a 14′ tree?! It’s simple really. It is because they didn’t have 20′ trees.

The kids are having a large time getting in the spirit for Christmas, which really takes no prompting. Your author, who is known as Scrooge, doesn’t get there quite as quickly.

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Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


Milking, day 3

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Dottie, post milking and returned to the pasture. The black cow in the black of pre-dawn is challenging for a picture. This was the best of the lot.

Dottie was fantastic again today, meeting is in the pasture ready to milk and allowing herself to be halter led from pasture a all the way to the milking stanchion. She still balks at entering the stanchion but that will pass quickly as she learns it’s where the food and milking happen.

We got about 2 gallons of milk this morning so all in all things are progressing very nicely.

The inmates were both here this morning and are moving the cows to a new paddock and setting up the weeks paddocks. We still have a lot of logging to do and hopefully we will get some extra time this week to get a few more trees ready to send to the mill.

Dan Moore on EmailDan Moore on FacebookDan Moore on GoogleDan Moore on Twitter

Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


Milking, day 2. And a new name.

20131216-072426.jpgToday we had our second day of milking the new cow. Unlike yesterday where she was in the barn, this morning we had her out in the pasture with the other cows. You never know how that’s going to go but she came right up to is and was very interested in the food bucket. After a few munches I was able to walk her by halter to the milk parlor where she only balked for a few seconds before going in to be milked. 2 1/2 gallons of sweet Jersey milk later and she was done.

Pictured here you see Spork out this morning at 6am. He is part of the morning crew but what made this even more impressive is that he and a bunch of of the rest of us went out to see The Hobbit last night and didn’t get to bed till after 11pm. Not a complaint from the boy this morning. He jumped right on his chores. The girls, not so much.

So we made an executive decision this morning and the new milk cow will be named Dottie. I don’t know if we need to have a renaming ceremony like you do with a boat. After the issues we had with Maggie, I think its sounding like a better and better idea.

Dan Moore on EmailDan Moore on FacebookDan Moore on GoogleDan Moore on Twitter

Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


A new cow

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Today we had our first milking from our new milk cow. Despite the black coat, she is another Jersey. Here you can see the last milking being done at the previous owners place. This is the same guy, Mike, who we bought Maggie from. This was his last milk cow and as you can see by his 5 year old son sitting atop her, she is another gentle cow.

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Here is another shot of her previous situation. She was a little fussy over the new people being involved but overall she seems to be a good cow.

Luckily Mike is just down the road on Penny Road so it was only a 15 minute ride home for our new cow. She is already bred back to an Angus so she shouldn’t get too much attention from Benjamin. Plus she has been bull bred rather than AI so she more used to a bulls attention. She is 3 years old so hopefully we should have many years together Lord willing.

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This morning milking in our milking parlor. Just a few minutes work and she went right into the gate. All things considered milking went well and the reports on the milk quality range from “Fantastic!” to “Mmm that’s like drinking ice cream.”

We have yet to name this cow. I have heard a few suggestions go by, Dottie and Dolly being two suggestions. We’ll have to have a quorum and decide on a final name. I actually like Dottie of the suggestions so far. I am sure that there will be a name soon.

Dan Moore on EmailDan Moore on FacebookDan Moore on GoogleDan Moore on Twitter

Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


Just take a little off the top

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We started a bit of tree trimming here at the farm. And by a bit we only started with 7 acres and by trimming I mean we are clearing out about 60% of the trees. In other words it’s a pretty major job. John, Miguel, and I got a few hours of work in before the rain drove us out of the woods. We put about 20 trees on the deck and cleaned out an old road that well use to skid our logs out to the deck to then load onto trailers and take to the saw mill. The end result will be our first silvopasture paddock which will hopefully give us summer forage of high quality grass and the ability to graze our cows in the shade during the heat of the summer. If this experiment is successful, then I may end up planting a grove in some of our existing pasture which would give us high value trees and keeping the ability to graze thereby doubling our production on the same land. It’s an experiment for now. Next summer well see what type of forage comes up. I already know the cows will love it. The greatly prefer being in the woods.

Here is a bit of John on the skidder.

Dan Moore on EmailDan Moore on FacebookDan Moore on GoogleDan Moore on Twitter

Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.


Just take a little off the top

20131215-060325.jpg
We started a bit of tree trimming here at the farm. And by a bit we only started with 7 acres and by trimming I mean we are clearing out about 60% of the trees. In other words it’s a pretty major job. John, Miguel, and I got a few hours of work in before the rain drove us out of the woods. We put about 20 trees on the deck and cleaned out an old road that well use to skid our logs out to the deck to then load onto trailers and take to the saw mill. The end result will be our first silvopasture paddock which will hopefully give us summer forage of high quality grass and the ability to graze our cows in the shade during the heat of the summer. If this experiment is successful, then I may end up planting a grove in some of our existing pasture which would give us high value trees and keeping the ability to graze thereby doubling our production on the same land. It’s an experiment for now. Next summer well see what type of forage comes up. I already know the cows will love it. The greatly prefer being in the woods.

Here is a bit of John on the skidder.

Dan Moore on EmailDan Moore on FacebookDan Moore on GoogleDan Moore on Twitter

Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he’s a farmer.