Reeses is 3/4 Mini Jersey (100% Jersey) and oh so cute!

Random information from a blogger who post randomly posts!  That pretty much describes my blog over the last year or more.  It's not that I don't love blogging because the truth is, I love to write.  I have just found myself either too busy or too tired in the past year to keep up with my blog as I would like.  I also find that since I am actively updating our farming Facebook page, to post the same information here seems redundant.  In addition, I have not bee able to give time to keeping up with the blogs of others and I think that this might be true for a lot of folks.  I sometimes wonder if blogging will go the way of the annual Christmas Letter.  There was a time when I looked forward to receiving Christmas Letters and sending one of my own.  Now I find that because of email, facebook and other means of instant communication, the Christmas Letter seems kind of archaic.  Yet, I feel drawn to continue on with the blog even though it might be sporadic and the topics might be so random that they discourage followers.  I enjoy looking back at the stats on my blog and seeing that many people are still discovering and using my Cottage Cheese recipe among others.  I also enjoy it when the stats show a high volume of traffic to one of my informational posts about the animals that we are raising.  If nothing else, I guess the blog will serve as some sort of journal for my daughter someday and she can look back and read about our farming and other ventures even after we are gone. 

Just a random update on what is going on here on the farm and in our lives:

The winter has been very mild and pleasant for the most part.  The warmer temps mean that we have had rain rather than snow and this had left us with a lot of mud to deal with.  For the first time ever, I have had to deal with chronic mastitis in a cow and that has not been fun.  I think the mud and the fact she insists on laying in the slop rather than the clean shelter has something to do with it.  We did everything we could think of to remedy the situation.  We had her milk cultured and it did not show anything terrible (like staph).  We changed inflations, changed vacuum pumps, made sure our equipment was thoroughly cleaned after each milking and began hand stripping.  We would get her cleared up and it would come back again.  Very frustrating and also meant that we were dumping milk making things tight around here on the milk supply.  Thankfully, she seems to be cleared up now and we are hoping she stays that way but are not holding our breath.  Should she come back with mastitis again, we are going to dry her off and put her in with the beef herd. 

In addition to the mastitis issues, we also had a cow that either has not bred back or slipped a calf.  Tori is a Mini Jersey and she slipped her first calf at seven months gestation.  We thought she was bred back and due in February only to find she is open.  I have had her vet checked and blood work run and there does not seem to be any known reason why she is not able to conceive/carry a calf.   We are going to give her about a year and if she doesn't conceive, then we will just have to butcher her.  It's heartbreaking and a big financial loss but it is part of farming. 

Upcoming news includes the fact that we should be receiving 100 Speckled Sussex chicks at the end of this coming week or beginning of next week.  After having a variety of birds over the years, I have finally settled on the Speckled Sussex as being my favorite.  I love their size, their productivity and their temperament.  I am ordering 25 roosters to fatten and butcher and the rest will be hens.  I need to totally replace my flock as all my other birds are between 2-5 years of age. 

It looks like all my goat does are bred to our new buck (who has a very nice temperament) and we should be having kids in May.  I know a lot of folks like to have their goats kid earlier but I am looking forward to having kids when the weather is warm and I don't have to worry about bringing them inside or keeping them warm. 

We had our very first beef calf of the year born today and should have many more in the coming weeks and months.  Four of our Jersey girls will be calving in March and I will have my hands full with new babies and mommas who will be back in production and need to be milked twice a day. 

Mike is gearing up to plant the garden and looking forward to that as gardening is his passion.  (I prefer to take care of the animals.)

I think that news pretty much gets us up to date and I would love to be able to promise that I will make frequent updates here to my blog, but as much as I want to do that, the truth is the posts will probably continue to be sporadic.............................and random. 

Rosie turned a year old this month.  I will be breeding her later in the summer.  She is a Foundation Pure Miniature and well under 40 inches. 

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