About Me

My photo
I'm a mother of four grandmother of seven and great grandmother of one. I have many hobbies and interests but gardening and rug hooking are my main interest at the moment. I live with my husband in the house that we built with the help of my brothers and have been married for 51years.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

HOW COLD IS -27°C?

Yesterday morning was colder than usual. I didn't need a thermometer to tell me that it was very cold. My hands and feet were getting painfully frozen, all the pipes near the sink was frozen as well as all the water in the bowls and pails. At -27 °C.  or -16.6 °F. it's very cold.

By the time I had the pipes and faucets thawed, my husband already had  finished milking the cows and was gone to a dentist appointment.... With 25 calves to care for it can get pretty hectic. I was at the barn from 5:30 am to 9:50 am and my feet were feeling the cold pretty badly. I was getting desperate. I used the blow dryer inside my boots and on my socks but as soon as I would put my foot back in my boots, they felt very cold again.  I had to put my hands in hot water too. What misery. The feed auger was frozen too so I couldn't give the grain to the 5 bigger calves. They got extra hay though.  They got their grain later when my son got the auger going again...



This is me, preparing the milk, hahaha, I didn't really copied the plumbing accurately but you get the idea of the set up. You can click on the pictures to make them bigger as I reduced the size of my pictures this year...

I had to warm my feet in a big bucket of hot water, one foot at a time as I prepared mixing the milk replacement for the older calves.  My steel toe boots can get pretty cold at that temperature.This will become my new method from now on. It worked like a charm for me.

The calves were so eager for their warm milk as I was getting late in feeding them. They are like clocks and knows when it's feeding time.

When it's colder than usual, they need lots of fresh bedding to ensure they have a dry bed but it's not always easy to keep their bedding clean and dry, especially when they are starting to eat all their grain as they sometimes get diarrhea and their pens quickly gets dirty. Some are pretty clean and others are hopeless. What normally takes me a few hours took me 4 hours and 15 minutes to do, from preparing and carrying the milk, feeding milk, hay, grain, water, bedding and cleaning up, washing bottles and pails  and filling the bottles for the next feeding all takes time especially when I have a bunch of new born calves.


These three calves are three weeks old now and the white one is huge and long as compared to the normal size. She was about 130 lbs when she was born and the average size are 90 lbs  at birth.  I have to put a halters on them to tie them down for feeding as they all want to eat at the same time, this way I can feed two at a time by holding the bottles.  The white on is super strong and feisty. Now I only tie two as one has learned to behave. I had 7 newborn but now I have only 6 as a bull was sold.


I have 10 calves in these littles pens and three are weaned off milk and are getting cold water. They are ready to move but have to wait till the new water bowl is install as the old one got a hole in it this week.  As soon as there three are moved out, their pens will be cleaned and the three bigger new born will be moved here. It's very difficult to take good pictures as the other 6 pens are behind a short retain wall.



This is Tigger, he just hates having his picture taken and I had to take about 6 shots before he agreed to look at the camera for a split second... He doesn't look too happy with me but still was waiting for his back scratch and a little sweet baby talk.



This is  the wood  that keeps the house toasty warm in these cold temperatures

.
This is my selfie.  Tigger said that he would only allow me to post his picture if I posted a selfie of me so here it is...  Notice the dust in my glasses when I get home from the barn. Foggy glasses are not fun either. Anyone wants my job?

So if your feet gets cold stick your boots in hot water.
Stay warm and safe.

JB