Two steps forward and one step back


That is towards building the farm vacation cabin rental. The reason being is that we’ve decided to get into the dairy business and buy a couple dairy cows. These aren’t just any old cows, these are cows from our neighbors the Browns, and we have been drinking these cows milk for about four years. The Browns decided to sell the cows so we figured this might be the best time to begin our journey into raising dairy cows. For those who have been following our journal, you might be aware that at one time we were raising goats for fresh milk, but decided that it was much easier to buy milk from the Browns than deal with adventurous diary goats. We’ve decided that Dairy Cows are much easier to contain while goats are smart and are forever trying to escape their fencing. At one point in time the goats ate our entire greenhouse swiss chard crop because our guard dog led them into the greenhouse.
Sylvest requested that he would like to undertake a “project” for just another learning experience during his apprenticeship here at MHO so we suggested either bees or dairy cows. His first choice was beekeeping; however, we were unable to secure a bee nucleus because the beekeeper we were hoping to purchase it from was sold out rather quickly this season.. So Slyvest said he would love fresh milk and would be more than happy to work on the cow fencing and milking during his spare time. So we thought, OK, a diary cow might be a good mix for this highly diversified farm.
Just a couple days after the discussion of dairy cows with Sylvest, while Alvin was visiting, Alvin mentioned to Carl that the Browns were selling their cows. Carl made a call to the Browns. We worked out a deal. We devised a fencing strategy that might work for a month or two. We then moved the cows to their new home here at MHO. Just a few days after their arrival Daisy May calved and out came an EXTREMELY CUTE little baby girl. We worried like any new parents as to whether the baby was getting enough milk so we called a couple of our neighbors who suggested that perhaps we need to restrain Daisy May allowing her baby to nurse. They say sometimes first time mothers, which is what Daisy May is, won’t let their youngun nurse.  So that we did, which wasn’t a very comfortable for us, the bit about restraining Daisy May so that her baby could nurse. Little Daisy May happens to be very healthy and playful. All of this happened in a little over three weeks. It is still hard to believe we are on this new journey all because of little dreams in our head of warm milk directly from the cow, soft mozzarella that melts in your mouth, freshly churned butter, frozen custard, feta cheese, cream cheese, aged moldy cheeses. It is not just because of these dreams, but also because Sylvest is taking his job seriously in helping with the cows, making sure they are healthy and happy. SO THANK SYLVEST if you happen to taste our wonderful milk!
So here we are in the bovine diary milk business. This new journey is taking time away from progress towards the Farm Vacation Cabin Rental, but we feel it is the right direction for the farm, especially since we will be offering Agri-Tourism (or Eco-Tourism). How can you go to a farm and not expect to find cows in the pasture? Our next step is to build a small little Milking Parlor and Stanchion so that this milking thing can become a one person job.  At the moment it is taking a couple of us to milk.
First we installed the electric fence around the barn. Carl, Chris and George started this one Saturday. Syl and George completed it the following Tuesday. This fence allows the cows free access to the barn.

First we installed the electric fence around the barn. Carl, Chris and George started this one Saturday. Syl and George completed it the following Tuesday. This fence allows the cows free access to the barn.

We then moved the cows from the Browns farm to MHO. Luckily the cows only needed to travel in the livestock trailer about 5 miles down the mountain to their new home at MHO.

We then moved the cows from the Browns farm to MHO. Luckily the cows only needed to travel in the livestock trailer about 5 miles down the mountain to their new home at MHO.

Daisy May moved to MHO on Monday then Calved on Wednesday. Little Daisy May is trying to stand up after a quick birth.

Daisy May moved to MHO on Monday then Calved on Wednesday. Little Daisy May is trying to stand up after a quick birth.

Precious Little Daisy May just after a quick birth!

Precious Little Daisy May just after a quick birth!

Little Daisy May getting her first drink of milk! We worried that the little girl wasn't nursing enough so we restrained Mother Daisy May so her little one could drink a bit of milk while we were watching. Silly and nervous first time parents we are!

Little Daisy May getting her first drink of milk! We worried that the little girl wasn't nursing enough so we restrained Mother Daisy May so her little one could drink a bit of milk while we were watching. Silly and nervous first time parents we are!

Production Note to Self:Sassy was born May 8th to Daisy May.

About Farmer

About Us: We are mostly market gardeners and sell our offerings at local markets; however, in addition to preserving our harvest for winter, we raise egg laying chickens, chickens for meat and dairy goats. We can’t claim to do all these things alone - we normally have a farm apprentice living on the far – who helps us with all the farm chores. .

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