The Herd welcomes Naomi

What is the definition of a herd of cows anyway? How many does one need to have a herd?  Because yesterday Lady Astor gave birth to a lovely tiny, tiny heifer. She also has no belt at all, just a tiny bit of white on her side and her belly. But she is so delicate and so small, she weighs as much as a small goat. Her mother is not protective at all. In fact she showed such a huge lack of interest that I had to dry the baby off myself.  Lady A was much more interested in catching up on her dinner. Spraying her calf with dry alfalfa. calf

Which I then had to clean off. Meet Naomi.  Naomi was named straight away. She is very sweet almost mystical.

After about Four hours the baby was still not standing well and had not had a drink so I carried her across to her mother and leaned her on my leg, guiding her head into her mothers udder and literally popping the teat into her mouth. She had a good drink while her mother ate again. Lady lifted her leg up and down a few times but let the baby feed. calf and mother

After that I felt comfortable enough to go to bed myself.  I have decided that I will bottle feed Naomi myself.  We have bonded. And every time I go near Potter her mother barks her danger, danger bark and tries to get rid of me.  Getting close enough to this cow to train her to feed a precious tiny calf seems like a mad idea at this point.

cow and calf

Lady A on the other hand does not  mind me sitting with her calf and did not even mind when Aunty Del reached over the divide trying to see who had arrived.

Ayrshire heifer

Soon I will go out and milk Lady Astor. There will be some resistance but I really don’t expect it to be as bad as Elsie.  The calf will come into the milking shed too. So it will be a bit chaotic. But it is the best way to train the cow to let her milk down for me.

Yesterday I opened up the calf creep (a small pen off the big cow pen designed just for calves) and Potter has immediately decided that this is her perfect sleeping space. No big cows can fit through the door – it is the calf safe space, and a celi safe space, with deep straw bedding,  no enormous cow pats and later this is where the calves will  find their grain.  I was able to go in there with Potter a number of times yesterday and play with her and speak to her.   It works very well.

Good morning. Life just got very interesting.   Two new heifers. Goodness.  No beef.  So I will be buying two beef calves this summer, probably weanlings.  I will start to call around tomorrow.  My job is to feed the families remember. This is not a petting zoo though there is lots of petting. I grow food the old fashioned way.

Join Us, the page above,  is making for some great reading. I love this page and wander through often to remind myself of the power of the Fellowship. (That is you by the way, whether you are a reader or a reader who comments, you are a member of the Fellowship of the Farmy). So if you are new to the Kitchens Garden don’t forget to pop in and introduce yourself.

Which reminds me. I have to do some work on The Cast page. But not ’til after the milking and the chores and visiting the Old Codger who is back from wintering in California.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Your friend on the farm,


85 Comments on “The Herd welcomes Naomi

  1. Welcome, Naomi! The latest addition to (or toward?) the wee farmy herd! Wonderful!

  2. Welcome Naomi! Welcome to the herd! Welcome to the farmy! The fellowship will enjoy watching you and Potter grow!

  3. Oh brought a lump to my throat, what a sweet little baby heifer. How strange that they can be so different. I will look at cows with a completely different slant from now on. So like us, some take to parenthood and some regrettably do not. Take care milking lady Astor. x

  4. It’s starting to seem like cows who like to be around people, aren’t such good Mommies and vice versa. Hmmm. That poor wee thing covered in hay sort of breaks my heart. But that one black eye peering out of the mess has its hold on something big and deep and universal. Mystical as you say. She’s dear. I love the names you’ve chosen as well. Potter and Naomi. Such nice names. Do the cows like to be around each other? How does Aunty Del react to all the newcomers and they to her? Do they have cow conversations? And do you know what they’re saying? That sounds like a daft question, but I’m sort of serious.

    • Aunty says hullo to everyone whilst keeping a weather eye on their mothers. In a few days she will go across to be Lady A’s companion and the calves and Elsie the Wild will hang out together. It is good to have Del to keep the milk cow company.. good training for her.. c

  5. How fantastic! Lady Astor may not be the world’s best mum, but I hope her laid back attitude will help the milking. With that name she expects a nanny for Naomi 😉

  6. Welcome to Naomi. Beautiful. These calves have wonderful faces. In fact they all do. I love Aunty Del! Your busyness is increasing. Two new babies. Girls are good though? Even if you have to buy a couple of boys? Or does the economics not work… Cow mums are just as different as us human mums! I do hope Lady A is happy with you milking her. And well done with the strategy with Potter, and the calves’ safe place. Think like a cow..!

    • Yes I will buy two steers. Beef cows. And raise them in the fields. As much as economics I want to eat good clean food raised on sunshine grass. It is healthier for everyone.. c

  7. Naomi….what a beautiful little heifer. Lady A was so big, I thought there might be twins. Another successful birth. Sad that she is so ambivalent about mothering, but good for you that you are allowed so close. Is Naomi peering up at Aunty Del in that picture? Good, good luck with the milking. Good to hear about the Old Codger. I was wondering about him the other day and how he was doing. Pet Naomi and Potter for me. They are gorgeous new additions to the farmy.

    • In a way she is a perfect Milk cow, she is not agitated very much about her baby being tucked out of sight in a warm corner.. and it is cold and windy today!

  8. Welcome Naomi 🙂 A perfect playmate for Potter. It almost seems like Lady Astor is going out of her way to make up for Elsies’ rudeness the other day. I really hope milking Lady A is a happier experience than last time. Good Luck miss c with your two new babies. Laura

    • The milking was easy. She stood perfectly then I took a bottle of hot milk to Naomi and she slowly drunk the whole thing without very much encouragement at all. So it was a very successful morning.. I am pleased.. though not finished with the chores yet, I had to come in for my jacket!.. c

  9. Well she does look like a tiny little thing. Lady Astor is such a lovely gentle cow, and Aunt Del so sweet peeking to see.

  10. Welcome Naomi!
    My Naomi is going to be excited to hear that you have a new calf named Naomi.

    Too bad momma isn’t interested in being a momma, but little Naomi is in good hands. Although it certainly sounds like Lady A is going to be the one to milk out of the herd. And yes, I would say you have a herd.

  11. Indeed, life just got interesting. Hope the milking goes well.
    Oh…and please give our best to the old codger. I have missed him.

  12. The name Naomi means Beautiful and Pleasant. She is Beautiful already, and we have great hopes for Pleasant! Welcome, Beautiful little girl, to the Farmy Family!

  13. All of these surprises when I open my blogs lately. One must wonder if Poppy will be the next in line for a surprise morning read. Congratulations to you and Lady Astor, although I hope that she takes some interest in her girl for your sake so your work load remains at chaotic but not overwhelming.

    • It works out fine if she leaves the baby to me. I will bottle feed her. And now we can milk Lady A twice a day and have milk for the pigs and calves and chickens and ice-cream and butter too! Life is definitely getting better! c

  14. Wow, surprise surprise surprise….. Two calves within the same week! That worked out well I guess. And now you have MILK and CREAM!!! And two heifers at that! So that makes your dairy operation in the future very productive. Maybe the rathouse needs to turned into a milking dairy barn…. But let’s not count our gallons before they age.

    And for any of the Fellowship that were in the path of the storms yesterday – I hope all are okay….. Let us know if you need anything, praying for everyone.

  15. YAHOOO!!!!! So exciting to hear about Naomi, and that Lady Astor is letting you milk her! Milk for all from now on!!! So wonderful!!! I am anxiously awaiting for our goats to kid in May, as we have been missing their milk like crazy! xoxoxo

  16. Hallo sweet Naomi and congratulations to momma and nursemaid alike! I’m also glad to hear of the Ild Codger’s return. Stay warm, Celi!

  17. Yippee. Bravo Lady A and Naomi. You probably have the best of both worlds to be milking Lady A and bottle-feeding Naomi. Do you have to feed her at night as well? If so, I hope you can catch a bit of sleep some time. What an exciting place your farmy is. I hope Elsie calms down a bit, otherwise life could get difficult for you. I’d been wondering about Codger – lucky chap missing the Illinois winter! Give him my regardes and welcome back.

    Love, Viv in sunny warm Normandy.

  18. Spring is about new beginnings . Lady Astor’s laissez-faire attitude towards mothering is okay since she has you as a nanny.

  19. A great big Congratulations to the latest new arrival. The name Naomi was in my thoughts yesterday, I was thinking of a friends daughter who has that name and drifted on to other Naomis I have known, Enjoy the milking, bottle feeding and building up the trust with the littleones!

  20. Lots of females on The Farmy miss c! Congratulatins to you all on the growing herd (and it’s most definitely a herd now). I guess like us women, cows are all different temperments too – earth mothers and rock chicks, you have them all 😉

  21. Naomi, very biblical…You have got some strange cows…One cow is difficult but loves her baby, the other cow is easy going but not interested in Motherhood or is it Cowhood….Best of luck with milking etc rather you than me!

  22. We had a new calf too yesterday morning! First calf heifer literally popped the little thing out. Such a good mama though. Good luck with Lady A and the milking adventure. I too, will try milking my Maggie. She is so docile, always has been and is really just a large dog. We raise Dexters and love their dispositions.

  23. Naomi was the name of my best friend in Kindergarten. It brought up a nice memory. Welcome, little one! And please give my (our) regards to the Old Codger – so pleased he’s back. Stay safe from the weather, dear miss C.

  24. I love the matter-of-fact way you write about everyday happenings… and not so every day events. Life just unfolds and we deal with it as best we can. We make decisions based on what we feel in our guts and what we observe. Plain and simple. Welcome Naomi… and sorry about Lady Astor not being such a doting mother. You will give little Naomi the nurturing she needs. We all survive this life somehow!

  25. Ah so cute! Glad she came out okay! Do you have to tag your cows?

  26. Oh so sweet! This little Naomi. Another surprise so quickly. When will you introduce the little heifers to each other?

    • When Naomi is big enough to fend for herself amongst the feet of the bigger cows. Not for a while I think, though I will be sleeping her in a pen right next to Potter so they will at least know each others smell.

  27. Oh C. Little Naomi is just beautiful…such a tiny, replica of her mama! And yes, I have to agree with Mad…Lady Astor fully expected a nanny for her baby…she just didn’t let you know that until Naomi was born! 🙂

  28. You and The Cadet are going to be busy. Aren’t you still feeding all the goats as well? Amazed at all the babies that arrived at once.

    • I have decided to wean the kids. we are on the last bag of milk and I have already cut them down to twice a day. They are all eating grass and doing very well.. c

  29. Two beautiful calves, congratulations. I love bottle feeding calves, the way their little tails flick back and forth. I’m looking forward to reading about how they grow, they all have such unique personalities and you describe them so well.
    Naomi looks adorable, so tiny. I hope her mother minds where she puts her feet, I lost one because of a clumsy mother once, heartbreaking. Is Aunty Del head cow now? Will they all graze together when it warms up? You definitely have a herd there. Maybe Elsie will settle once she gets into a group outdoors.

    • Her mother is out in the field and Baby is on the barn with me. How awful for that cow and calf. I must admit to being terrified for the first few hours.. c

  30. What a cutie. I find it interesting that there are indifferent mothers in every species. Time will tell what will become of them. How exciting to have 2 new babies on the farm.

  31. Lovely surprise. Gorgeous baby…and all yours it seems. Lady A obviously heard the talk going round that you needed a milk cow and has graciously handed her baby over to you.

  32. Congratulations on the babies. I’m constantly amazed at all you have to know to raise animals and live mostly sustainably. Even though I used to stay at my grandparents farm as a little girl, I realise now, I had no idea what all went on. You are a wonder.

  33. All males one year, and females the next, have created your own dairy herd that you can nurture in the Farmy Way. A very good outcome. I’m so pleased you are able to milk Lady A. I had a thought that made me smile to myself… given no-one else is here to see it… other than Del’s colouring it’s quite the Kiwi herd, they could all have silver fern tatts…

  34. Well, the milk supply has arrived after all this time! Naomi so tiny but is she empties her bottles daresay that will rapidly change – but no more cold weather your way please!! Glad you have two girls: future baby and milk supplies guaranteed under your roof . . . even if you have to buy boys. Our newscasts last night frightened the bejesus out of me re the twisters which had torn quite a few townships apart in: oh boy do I know the map of Illinois backwards now . . . and all of the tornadoes were not to your south but within 80 or so kms W/NW of Chicago . . . . with the passage of that front hopefully it is all over awhile!!

  35. Welcome little Naomi! (That’s my Hebrew name!). Gorgeous girl babies. So glad your calving is over, now you can concentrate on milk and lots of babies!

  36. How did I miss this post!?? Congratulations on your new baby and congratulations that you have gotten hands on Potter a few times, despite her mother’s protests.

  37. Naomi is so cute! Thanks for cleaning the straw off that wee one.

  38. Goodness, I looked away for a day or two and then I discover someone called Potter has arrived. Naomi is a perfect name for this little heifer.

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