Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The cow has landed

Our new Jersey milk cow came home today. She’s a three year old and is pregnant. She is also still in milk. Her name is Fancy and she’s as sweet as can be. It’s been a lot of work getting ready, but the work ahead of time paid off and her homecoming was smooth…more or less. She’s sad to be leaving her barnyard friends at her previous home, but she is always happy to see us when we go out to visit her.

Everything went smoothly until milking time. Milking a goat who is accustomed to you is different from milking a stressed cow. I guess the milking for Fancy went well enough. We didn’t get much milk, but we didn’t get kicked either. The fun started when we tried to finish chores…in the dark.

Whisper, our goat that’s still in milk, was nowhere to be found. She must have gotten scared by the cow, because she had escaped to my neighbor’s wheat field. It took a while, but I finally got her rounded up and headed back to the barn. Problem was, Fancy was in between me and Whisper and Whisper’s milking stall. By shoving Whisper through a gap in the wall of the barn I was finally able to get her into her milking stall. She was still scared of the cow and was bucking and dancing the entire time I tried to milk her. I eventually got her milked and headed for the house.

Oberon and Titania, our two dogs, refused to be put up and disappeared into the night to investigate the new cow. Half an hour later I finally got the dogs rounded up and the milk filtered. I was worried about Fancy and whether the dogs had run her, so I went back out into the dark to find her. Fancy was fine, still lonely though, and I was able to get her to nuzzle me a little bit.

Our chore list for the morning is pretty long, but I am starting to relax and feel more optimistic about it than I felt an hour ago.

We will be applying for our Department of Agriculture small herd milk license tomorrow. Hopefully it will come through soon because we will be swimming in milk if it doesn’t.

I went to a great meeting and focus group put on by our local farmer’s market. We are getting pretty excited to try the market again. We took the year off last year, but I think between eggs, milk, soap, and vegetables we should be able to bring in a few dollars.

I meet with a group of men on Mondays and our meditation was on giving up the illusion that security is possible in this life. Embracing the fact that life is unpredictable and enjoying the journey instead of trying to be in complete control. Life is a wonderful journey. I’ve been acting out of feelings of fear rather than faith for the last few days. Trying to manage all the details instead of enjoying the ride. Tonight I am focusing on letting go and letting God. Letting go and living in faith instead of fear.

On this night of welcoming home are latest barnyard companion, I can’t help feeling incredibly blessed now that I’ve had a chance to relax and reflect. Gratitude for farm, family, and friends.

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