Come on my mini-tour!

Greetings from Minnesota! The temperature climbed above 32 today, and the smell of spring is faintly in the air. I know we probably haven’t seen the last of snow and cold, but I’m pretty certain we might be done with below zero temperatures for this winter.

Bet you’ll never guess what I did on Sunday…

Well, I’ll tell you! I put my rather novice video and narration skills into action at the farm. The first video gives a look at some of our baby calves in hutches. You even get to hear a few animal sound effects. The second video shows the grown-up gals in one of our milking cow barns. I tried to offer a few helpful comments about animal care and descriptions of what you’re seeing, but you can always mute me if I get too boring 😉

Calf Video

Cow Video



If you have any questions about what you see in the videos I would love to talk more about them. Just leave me a comment, and I’ll respond as soon as I can.

Running Tales

So on this Valentine’s Day (bet you thought you were going to escape today’s post without a v-day reference, didn’t you??). On this Valentine’s Day, I knew I wouldn’t have time to run unless I created time. “Creating time” is code for just getting up earlier. I crawled out of bed way before I wanted to, wished my sleeping husband a happy valentine’s day, and headed off to the gym.

My legs weren’t really sore from my long run this weekend, but they were definitely more tired than usual. I did an easy first mile by necessity and then kept increasing the speed as I went. Final stats of 3.75 miles @ 9:25. A good run for a Monday, but I wish it would have felt a little easier. I hopped off the treadmill a few minutes early because I knew I needed some extra time to stretch.

Today was yet another reminder of why I like to run in the morning. It’s a great way to start the day! ( if only it didn’t involve getting out of bed so early…)

Happy Valentine’s Day to all. I don’t mean to sound mushy, but hopefully you think of all your loved ones today and have a happy reminder of how blessed you are. I will definitely be saying a little extra prayer of thanks tonight.

Any questions on my first-ever farm videos?

Do you have a hot date for tonight? 🙂

About Lisa

Hi, I'm Lisa. Dairy farmer's wife and Minnesotan to the core, I write about rural farm life, running down country roads, and the food, faith, and family that bind everything together. Follow along on my journey.
This entry was posted in Baby Calf Care, Cows, Running and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Come on my mini-tour!

  1. Heidi Nicole says:

    I’m assuming that the cows are in a free stall style barn – how is it that some of them are up higher, the ones walking around in the background? That was odd to me, but it has been a while since I have been on a farm so it might be normal nowadays…

    Great videos…it makes me miss farming! I think the best time of year to be farming is in the spring – just before everything becomes a muddy mess!

    • Lisa says:

      The barn I filmed in is actually a compost barn. We use a powered rake behind a tractor to mix in sawdust everyday, and it creates a soft, dry, bedding mixture that just builds up – higher and higher so that’s why the cows look so high up! We haul everything out several times per year to the field to use as fertilizer, so sometimes the pack is much lower, but because as spring gets closer it’s high like this. This post talks more about compost barns – https://cowspotsandtales.wordpress.com/2010/10/01/our-soon-to-be-mother-cows/ Our other barn is a freestall, so I may have to film in there next!

  2. Brit says:

    Great videos. I still think you have an accent. 😉

    No hot dates for V-Day for me. We developed a leaky hot water heater yesterday, so Chris and I got eachother a new hot water heater for V-Day. Sweet. Just we really wanted.

  3. I can’t believe how big a 1 day old calf is. I would love you to video the birth of a calf.

    So, do you just dairy farm?

    And the hutches – do the calves stay in hutches or is it just because it is so cold there?

    Thanks for sharing… This video was much better than the farm video I saw over the weekend – the one Lisa Ling took for Opra touring the slaughterhouse 😦 I wanted to ask you what you thought about it. Have yous seen this? http://eater.com/archives/2011/02/03/oprah-tours-a-colorado-slaughterhouse.php

    I don’t eat meat for health reason… I am not so much an animal rights person, but watching the tour of the slaughterhouse was really upsetting for me. What are your thoughts around this?

    Sorry to start debate, but after watching the video I thought of you and wanted your opinion. 🙂

    Be well,
    Carolyn

    • Lisa says:

      I think debate can be great – no need to appologize! I hadn’t seen this video before, but did watch it now. The only thing that surprised me was the cattle were a bit dirtier than I normally see. I wonder if it had recently been really muddy/rainy and then dried up again? As to my other thoughts, I think it was a pretty accurate video, which I appreciate. I do recognize it may be hard for some people to watch, and it’s certainly okay to feel that way.

      I’ve toured meat processing plants, and I also took an animal science class in college where we graded carcasses for quality. We looked at everything from beef to hogs to lamb. Obviously our college meat lab was a much smaller scale than this plant, but I have seen a fair amount of what the video shows so I know I have a different perspective than the average person. I’ve pretty much been at peace with the circle of life idea since I was a little girl. I think the vast majority of farmers really care for their animals well, and then the animals have an important purpose to provide nutrition for us at the end of their life. Very simillar to the animal kingdom where some animals eat plants and these animals become food for other animals. I do respect the fact that not everyone feels this way.

      As to your calf hutch question, we raise calves in hutches most of the year. In the spring – fall months and even into winter we usually have yards on the hutches so the calves can be inside or outside. This row that I filmed got put outside when there was still a lot of snow, so they don’t have yards yet. Things have started to melt off more (yippee!) so they’ll get yards soon. Raising calves in hutches help stop the spread of germs between calves, keeps them from sucking on each other and also keeps the calves from having to compete with each other for milk and feed. We move them into grouped pens when they’re a little bit older. This post shows some more hutch pictures. https://cowspotsandtales.wordpress.com/2010/09/23/rain-rain-go-away/
      You can also check out the “baby calf care” category. We dairy farm, raise corn and hay for feed and also raise several steers for beef.

      Edit: Forgot this question
      Video a birth? Hmm.. maybe. It seems like if all goes well I usually miss seeing most of the birth, and if it doesn’t go well I’m too busy assisting to video. I’ll have to think about that one!

      Thanks for your questions!

  4. Great videos! I love seeing the baby cows, they are too cute!

  5. sweatykid says:

    I love how 35* becomes warm (comparatively). The cows must be loving it! What a sweet little thing that calf is. Very cool animals. I like your narrations.

  6. i like the euphemism for getting up earlier: “creating time” i should use it. it’ll make me feel better when my alarm goes off before the sun!

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