About Me

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I'm a mother of four grandmother of seven and great grandmother of three. I live with my husband in the house that we built with the help of my brothers and will have been married for 57 years this February.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


I checked the weather forecast last evening and I planned my day accordingly. I was going to do routine work at the farm, and cook some Chicken Fettuccine with Sundried tomatoes for lunch and cut my back lawn and do some weeding.

I checked my email and got this picture from my daughter Christine.

Not the best quality but you get the picture. Isn't that precious, little Daniel is such a happy little fella.

When I arrived at the barn there was a new calf born in the calving pen. Just before finishing my job, I found another calf born amongst the dry cows. I called my son Vaughan for help. Either one of us could figure which cow had calved. My husband George came to see if he could find the mother but he couldn't either. There were no visible signs. He called the vet to check which cow had calved so that she could be put in the pen with the calf. I dip the umbilical cord  and gave them each their vaccine, and my son milked both cows and help me feed them.

With two new calves and my 10 calf  pens full, I had to move the two older calves that I had just finished weaned off milk and that meant  two empty pens to clean and scrub after lunch. It's a heavy and stinky job. My son helped me move the two bigger calf down to the other end before going to do something else. Not as easy as moving little calves. Even little one are not easy to move....

I went home and I managed to make my beloved  fettuccine for lunch and after lunch, cleaned the dishes and kitchen and tidied up, swept the floor and  I went back to the farm to clean the pens. I put some fresh bedding in the two cow pens before returning home for a wee snack before returning for the late afternoon feeding and chores.

I'm taking my first bite and my cell rang. My son Vaughan needed my help to deliver yet another calf. This one was a hard pull and needed to use the winch. I got there as fast as I could and helped.  So far, one heifer and two bulls.

With three new calves it always means more work and it takes longer  and three cows to bed and give hay to and freshen up their bedding. Work is endless it seems.

I'm finishing up cleaning this end of the barn and I go down the other end to wash the bottles and nipples and met George, all out of breath. He found another calf in the very back of the barn but her  mother was dead. It was her first calf and she had a hard delivery alone with no one to help her.
Luckily the heifer calf was alive and laying not far from her mother and was very dirty as it was muddy back there. My husband had heard her cry after he was done working  and went to see and found the sad scene and needed my help to bring the calf in the barn. My son Vaughan was gone by then.

Since it was way too far for George  to carry the calf, he went to get the wheelbarrow and put a bit of hay in it but his asthmas got so bad that I sent him home to get his puffer. I was afraid that he would die there along with the dead cow.

The poor guy was barely able to breath, he  came back all the way to the barn because the house was locked up and his keys were in the truck at the farm. His breathing was so laboured by this time that he had a hard time to think. I was really concerned. He got in his truck and drove himself home to use his puffer. It takes about 5 minutes to start to work.

 My grandson Liam just happened to have come to the farm after school and was cleaning the alleyways with the skidstear. I went to the other end of the barn to fetch him and the both of us went out back through a herd of curious heifers  to try to find where this calf was.

 I'm getting braver by the day, I tell you. I used to be so scared of cows and heifers. lol... Now I just plow through them, lol... Well I wouldn't plow through a herd of cows actually. Heifers are so darn curious. You chase them and they keep coming back.

My grandson didn't have a pair of rubber boots on so he couldn't walk in the deep muddy muck like me. We had to open a bunch of  gates here and there to go through and I figured a better way to bring this calf inside. It was longer but easier. The muddy terrain was so bad after all that rain that my grandson had to pull the wheelbarrow backward while I held the calf down in the wheelbarrow.

One way to hold down a calf in a wheelbarrow is to cross one of his front leg and and one back leg so they  can get up. They get pretty feisty those little guys and they are unbelievably strong.

We made it to inside the barn and by then my husband was breathing much better and came to take over for my grandson. I dipped the calf umbilical  cord in iodine and vaccinated her. It was a heifer and I'm calling her L'il Annie. Poor little thing, it's a good thing that she was heard by my husband or she would have been there all by herself all night, prey for the coyotes.

I had no pens left  to put her in so I made a bed and put a halter on her head and tethered her for the night. She laid down in a nice bed of fresh hay and a full belly of colestrum warm milk.

I could possibly have another calf by morning. Oh God, I hope not... It's the harvest moon after all. Did you see the big full moon?

My back lawn didn't get mowed, I didn't pulled a weed and didn't absorbed much beautiful sunshine rays today.

I now have two new bulls and two new heifer calves today. So now I have 12 little baby calves, and 11 little bigger ones. Enough to keep me occupied.
I hope that tomorrow will be less eventful.

Thanks for stopping by and for reading my farm adventures. I'm honoured that you bother to comment.
God bless,


  1. I wonder if the hospital delivery ward is as busy as your barn! I love reading your stories but they wear me out and put me to shame. I do not known where you get the energy! I am sorry for the loss of your cow I know it must be hard when you loose one. Thanks for taking the time to share.

  2. can't read about the calves... but oh boy! did I gander at little Daniel! such a happy little guy... that's just the best when they're smiling and laughing...

    Your daughter looks great!

    glad you got to eat that luscious Chicken Fettuccine with Sundried tomatoes ... sounds deeeeelicious

  3. You must be one strong gal and a determined one also.Congrats on all the new life in the barn

  4. Wow! I'm constantly amazed at your adventures! You're amazing...I don't know how you get it all done. Congrats on all the new additions and I'm sorry you lost one along the way. Take care of yourself if you can catch your breath!

  5. I don't now how you had time to tidy your kitchen or even get lunch! I would love to see those calves and stroke them but I expect the novelty wears off with so much hard work to be done. I hope your hubby is ok and that you can both manage the workload. I love reading about your day - by comparison, it's my day off work today (call centre) so I did light housework, laundry and have my paint set out! what a contrast! I would like to think you have some time together in the evening for a glass of wine, a log fire and a good book or tv! Betty x

  6. Farming especially dairy farms are hard work. 24/7, rain, shine or snow. Sometimes I miss it but after reading about all the calves and muck, I don't! lol.
    Little Daniel is so sweet and happy. Great picture of the two of them. I wonder is I will ever have grand babies? So far no one is interested in having kids.
    Hope you have a quieter day today!

  7. It's a good thing you have such cute grandkids to make you smile each day! Running a farm sounds a lot like working in an Emergency Room with all those calves popping at once. I'm so glad your hubby was able to get to his puffer on time and is breathing easier. Hugs to you!

  8. you never have a boring day, do you. LOL

  9. As always Julia you amaze me. You work so hard I hope you get to enjoy the sunshine.

  10. You, my dear, are Wonder Woman!! I can't believe all you do, Julia! And yet, you always take time to say something nice and uplifting to all of us bloggers!! If there was a Blogger Woman's Hall of Fame ~ you'd be the first inductee!!! Thanks for sharing your stories ~ a lesser woman would have wilted under all that calf chaos!!

  11. I always love reading your adventures on here. Welcome to the world little calf - how precious that must be. And now I'm craving Chicken Fettuccine :)

  12. Oh my....wonder woman step aside! You are my new heroine. You go girl!!!

  13. Daniel is such a sweetheart! Love your daughters dimples! I'll bet you slept very well after the day you had....hope you get a little R&R soon.
    Take care,

  14. it certainly WAS the full moon pulling on all those calves to be delivered! i'm glad you saved little annie. poor scared first-mom. really sorry. farming is hard work. livestock farming is harder. dairy farming has to be the hardest of all...

  15. See what I mean, Julia? Once again you stopped by and left a very nice comment ~ wish you were my neighbor! You're a very uplifting soul!!

  16. Daniel is so precious as I am sure all those baby calves are too. I just had a take a deep breathe after reading your post. Poor girl I know you hold your breathe when harvest moon comes around....I just can't image all you do but I sure do enjoy your post....

    You have a work ethic that is unbelievable....

  17. Precious picture of Daniel!

    Wow! What an experience! Our simple garden harvest pales with this story!

    Incidentally, the red okra turns green when it is cooked, and our favorite way to have it is to fry it. That seems to be the story of food prep in the south.:-) Okra is also used in gumbo, though that isn't something I cook.

    Take care of all those calves! It is definitely hard work!

    Try to work in some time to rest!

    Thank you for your visits to my blog.

  18. Julia ~
    You are the hardest worker I know. You make me tired just reading all you've done. I hope you've gotten a bit of much needed rest.
    Hugs :)

  19. I don't know how you have time to do everything!
    I am so sorry about your heifer! It is so painful to lose an animal.

    Love the picture of that sweet grandbaby! Don't you love technology?

  20. Oh my gosh Julia, it must be that moon. I remember that it would happen when there was a full moon. Poor heifer to die giving birth I bet it broke your heart, I can tell you have been so busy and your plate is so full right now.
    That is a bunch of baby calves. How close are you to being finished calving or did you just start. You made me laugh that you are afraid of cows. That is so cute. I know what that is like though.
    I hope you get some rest soon. It sounds like your weather is like our weather in late November. I can't imagine it being that muddy this time of year.
    It is a good thing your grand son was there.
    Great post!

  21. Oh, Lordy, Julia, you do work hard! Calves all over the place! Sorry you lost the heifer, but that sweet little Daniel will cheer you up. Sarah

  22. Again Julia, you never have a dull day! Ever! I looked at the full harvest Moon & thought of the stats that more babies are born on a full moon...must be true for animals too! Baby Daniel sure is enjoying his life, sweet boy. With so much to deal with you are the best at multi-tasking & would run circles around me! You do live each day to the fullest & are a blessing to your family & the animals at your farm. Their truly are angels among being one!


  23. Julia, honestly there is never a dull moment on a dairy farm...or any farm for that have more energy...please share your secret with us...your blog readers...Daniel is just adorable...looking more and more like (handsome) big brother James...Happy first day of Fall to you...sending hugs from Maine, Julie...

  24. So sad about the mama cow who died in "calf-birth", all alone back there. So glad you were able to save her babe. Twelve are one busy bovine midwife! And one remarkable woman:)
    Hope your plate fills up with some pasta with sundried tomatoes
    along with all the other chores that keep you hopping. You're a good mama to living creatures and I'm cheering you on;)

  25. Julia, Your like a lady out of the bible you do everything! I am exhausted just reading your story. Holy Molee your how old and doing all that. My gosh I need to sit down and have a cup of tea after that post, Big Hugs and the baby and your daughter are darling, Cheri

  26. What a remarkable lady you are, never getting tired and doing multitasking work with joy. After reading your post i also want to be active like you. Your grandson Daniel will surely enjoy with you. He looks so smart.

  27. You wore me out just reading about your day. Y'all work hard, that's easy to see. Good luck with the newborns.

  28. OH my goodness! This post is exactly why I told my sister-in-law Linda the other day that she was the hardest working woman I know besides my friend Julia. If I show this post to her she will understand why I chose you over her. hahaha
    Never do you have a boring day! Next time I start feeling sorry for myself on the tractor I will think of your day during Harvest Moon.
    Hope your having a restful weekend but something tells me different.
    Love ya

  29. sorry its been so long since i have stopped by! i always think of you being so busy with the cows.. and boy it sounds like you have been BUSY!! your daughter and babe are beautiful! hes a cutie like his brother! enjoy your evening ( i hope you are sleeping!)

  30. Also, i know how scary that darn asthma can be as son Jason has had it all 27 yrs of his life.. Not fun. Glad your husband did better after his inhalers..

  31. Oh my gosh! What a busy day you had!! I'll never ever complain again!