LIFE lessons come early on the farm and today was a particularly enlightening one for our three-year-old farm girl Hattie.
As we were heading into town I noticed a cow was labouring close to the fence.
I stopped to watch because it’s a special thing to do and also because the calf was half way out and if she didn’t progress we would need to step in to help.
After just a couple of minutes, the cow stood up, and with gravity doing its job, the calf fell to the ground with a heart starting thud.
Before the calf had even hit the ground the new mum had flung herself around to start licking and nurturing her new little love.
The natural instinct to remove all the after birth from its face, to get it clean and dry is a wonder to behold.
Hattie was quite enthralled and was happy to tell anyone who would listen that “A baby moo fell out of the cow’s butt - and then she licked and licked it”.
I’m sure the kinder teachers are going to be impressed with this story tomorrow!
We debriefed this afternoon and I asked Hattie where she thought she came from. She thought she was being funny and looked at me and giggled - “out of mummy’s butt”. I was quick to respond that she was right but that I didn’t lick her. Cue more giggles.
When I drove past later the cow was chewing on her placenta - but that’s a whole other blog.
UPDATE: Hattie’s first calf “baby moo” is no longer requiring bottle feeding. The next day, a calf sadly died while it was being born. We were lucky enough to get the mother to take “baby moo” as her own. The adoption arrangement is working beautifully.
As written for Cake Business School.
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Feeding the social media machine can be exhausting. From Facebook, to Twitter, to Instagram and of course the blog. Starting a blog is exciting and you see ideas everywhere at first but sometimes the well runs dry – or worse – you lose motivation to continue because it simply becomes hard work. The exhaustion can come from having to pull an idea from thin air and turning it into something passable. Here are my five tips to keep your blog fresh and inspiration for new topics flowing.
PRO TIP: Write ahead where you can. It really takes the pressure off and makes the whole process far more enjoyable.
I hope these tips keep your bloggers’ block at bay. How do you come up with new topic ideas for your blog?
Natasha Lobban is a freelance journalist and editor and the director of Kilmuir Creative. She is also in the process of starting her own baking and preserving business from her farm in North East Victoria. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to collaborate on the best marketing recipe for your cake business.
It’s been a week of long, cold days and even colder nights.
Farming life isn’t always new growth and adventure. It can be a little heartbreaking at times too.
That was the case when grass tetany hit us on Friday morning. It’s a deadly magnesium deficiency in cattle brought about by lack of sunshine and cold weather.
Blocks had been put out in preparation but it just wasn’t enough in this case. Old cows are particularly susceptible and this old girl didn’t make it through the cold night.
We’ve been feeding out Causmag – a magnesium-rich powder which is spread over hay (and covers everyone and everything with a fine white powder).
Yesterday was also the first time I have witnessed Dean and Dad do a bit of recipe development – making special licks for the cattle containing the Causmag. Apparently the powder is good for the cattle but tastes awful. You can’t reason with them so it takes some sugar to entice them to eat it.
By some sugar I mean big buckets of molasses that has to be warmed to get it moving and mixed. Not an easy feat on a cold day.
There was much discussion on the correct ratio of salt to powder to molasses. Their operation wouldn’t pass a health inspector’s test - the brew was created out the front of the shed and stirred with an old garden fork – but the cows seemed to like to.
And we haven’t lost another cow, which is the most important thing.
Dean’s also been out in the cold spreading urea on the motorbike … brrrrrr! We’ve had so much rain it’s the only way to get across the paddocks.
So when he put in a request for sultana scones on Saturday afternoon, I thought I’d be nice and whip them up.
Sorry for the lack of photographs. The scones went straight from the oven to the table and Dean and Dad scoffed them before I could think to take any pictures.
And thanks for your recipe advice Mum. Apparently I’m a little rough with the dough – so remember if you want light, fluffy scones use your soft indoor hands not your tough farmer hands.
SHORT AND SWEET: Serve straight from the oven with lashings of salty butter and a pot of hot tea. Jam optional. And be sure to break the scone apart with your fingers, not a knife, for the ideal scone experience.
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