As Jake threw up the last of the bales from our field yesterday and Amanda was stacking them in strong piles, I said: Lego. Just that one word. Lego. (It is hard work we do not have the puff for more than one word at a time). Her head came up and she looked around and said Yes. Nodding. Lego. The original Lego.
Playing with those old fashioned Lego blocks had trained us to stack hay! And There is another part to the stacking of hay that is important. The barn, as you will remember, is listing badly to port (and dipping in the bow a bit too). So we stack the hay into the center of the barn to try and stabilise it. I have a feel for it. That barn and I have a crossed fingers relationship. We are like this. (holding up two crossed fingers). No-one but me is in charge of which bale goes where. I also stack them so I can retrieve one kind of bale or another during the winter. Not all bales of hay are the same. We must look after that old barn.
While we are stacking the hay, throwing bales onto the clatter box, stomping about in the loft – it gets very noisy. We have been doing this two days in a row. And here is something interesting. Both times I have looked down and found that Poppy had put her babies into their snug and Lain Across the Entrance so they could not get out. (She does this at night too). Yesterday they were wide awake and darting about in the snug taking running leaps at her ample rump, that had turned into a door, trying to get back out. But no, she had closed the door. Soon they gave up and went to sleep and so did she, still with her bottom across their entrance. Interesting isn’t it.
Later we drunk coffee and ate Amanda’s coffee ice-cream.
As a treat.
And now to the The cows. Such good news – I hope.
So Lady Astor started screaming like a banshee all day long yesterday. Mooing and mooing quite aggressively. Obviously in heat. The breeding three weeks ago had not taken. I let Aunty Del in with her to see what was going on and they were both jumping up and riding each other (this is very common and a good way to work out if a cow is in heat but they were riding each other so which cow? – I let Lady Astor into the yards and she tried to jump ME, which is actually pretty frightening not to mention dangerous – well I am not in heat so I concluded that Lady was the one). I had been talking to the Lady Vet anyway (about beginning the process to breed Aunty Del) and told her about this, so after work she drove all the way over with her liquid nitrogen tank full of boyfriend straws. After kitting up and pulling on the orange glove up to her elbows, she examined Lady and looking up, said my two favourite words.
“Oo”, she said “Soft cervix too”. We smiled to each other and she proceeded to breed the cow.
Aunty Del was in the stall next door waiting for the injection that would begin her cycle. I have never been able to judge her cycle. She is the sweetest most laid back cow in the Western world. But she was being moony yesterday. – – lovey with me – not to mention the cow jumping exhibition earlier. So before we gave her the first of the injections I asked the Lady Vet to give her a quick examination.
She got some fresh gloves, examined our heifer, grinned, looked up and said my two favourite words again! “Good mucous”. So I ran inside and found her registration papers, and as she had the tank with all the semen in there already, she quickly ran through the options, looked up her little semen boyfriend book and bred Aunty to a straw called JJ.
I felt high as a kite. I know it is not a sure thing by any means but this is the first time I have been able to gauge two heats and get the animals bred on a natural heat. On the same day!!
And Amanda and Tomoyo were running the kitchen! So dinner was taken care of. A most excellent day.
Today we are picking sweetcorn for the farmers market. And it is going to be another lovely day!
I hope you have a lovely day too.
Love your friend on the farm,
Now we all know how to get Miss C excited: Just say “good mucous”…. Brilliant news about your two girls, and it sounds as if Aunty Del’s First Time was peaceful and pleasant, surrounded by pleased and excited female companions. Poppy continues to impress the pants off me. Such a change from the rackety teenager; a relaxed but careful mother with her chunky, excitable babies, and she is indeed a clever girl.
wow, our little calf Aunty Del all grown up and ready to breed, time flies. I agree with katechiconi, Poppy is the rising star of motherhood on the farmy. Friday and the weekend is nearly here, enjoy. Laura
Good mucous (just to please you). Great news and lovely pictures. Poppy is a sensible mum – she didn’t want those babies getting worn out with jumping around.
Have another great day,
Plus the noise of the clatter box running overhead sounded like danger but how she got them to go to bed like that i have no idea!
That IS good news! Fingers (and hind-legs) crossed for two breedings that take!
The little pea chick looks as though it is wearing little white angel wings!
I thought that, too! It’s the sweetest picture. ❤
Wow – you are building the pyramids! Great news about the cows and Sheila seems to have turned into an Iberian black pig. How’s Manu doing? 🙂
Well, Poppy has turned out to be quite a natural mother: so sweetly protective and yet so firm 🙂 ! And we all know plenty of mucus means the hormones are raging [I better be polite and not bring this down to the human level!!] so the best of British with the breeding programme: wouldn’t it be wonderful . . .
Wow, that is amazing! And Poppy is such a good mother, that is really sweet, I am happy that you got to witness it.
Lots of good news – a good day indeed!
Well! Didn’t you and all the “girls” have a stellar day! Cheers!
Your happiness shines through in this post Miss C. It makes me smile to read your words and feel your joy 🙂
I love the cat pose!
I’ve read that it’s not uncommon for women living together in close quarters for their monthly cycles to re-align and all start at roughly the same time. Do you think this happens also with cows?
That last photo of the cat. Love it. the position, the smirk…
Are the dogs and cat guarding the turkeys or dreaming about turkey dinners?
BEAUTIFUL picture of Mr. Flowers on your header. Great news about Lady Astor & Aunty Del and it’s nice to see Poppy changed into a good Mom instead of being like Charlotte (yikes!) Good news all around from the farmy today. Wonderful to be a part of it all. Enjoy your sharing it with us.
I’m looking forward to hearing the news of successful breeding, and seeing those calves when the time comes!
YAY! It is such a relief to finally have it all come together in a BIG way!
Visiting the farm every morning and getting the animal news is such a lovely respite from the world’s awful news. Thanks C. xoxox
Suddenly Mr. Rogers is in my head, singing “It’s a Beautiful day in the neighborhood”—!! What a glorious batch of grand news. SO glad for you! xoxoxo to all the farmy.
Poppy is such a good mother! I love how she turns her own body into a door. It’s that nonverbal method that works so well with children. Be the example. Show the you love them. Prop them up to grow straight as opposed to crooked. Such an excellent pig-Mom. And I LOVE the “good mucous” tale!!! Fantastic. Two for the price of one. Fingers toes and all available appendages crossed.
She is certainly doing marvellously – nothing like what we expected!
Straw 33 great title; you blog site is my daily tranquilizer!
Straw 33 – most excellent!!
Good mucous! Good mucous is what we all need in one way or the other to keep our ‘lego’ stacked in the correct order. A wonderful positive post to come home to. My day is good and I hope today will be busy and fruitful.
What an educational post, Celi! I am referring to the breeding process as it is in the modern world. We were not livestock farmers (my growing up years), and of course now it’s all changed with artificial insemination. I learned about stacking hay though, in an old, slanting barn when I was a teenager. I find it interesting that I had not considered stacking hay in years… nor how to stack certain kinds of hay for feed or bedding or whatever. I suppose my Dad or Grandpa taught me these things, but today it feels like knowledge I was born with. I just KNOW! It’s that common sense factor. And, I’ve realized that not everyone has common sense. 🙂
Well, wonderful news about Lady Astor and Aunty Del. I did wonder about how Poppy would do with motherhood, proud of her excellent care to her piglets. A grand and glorious day for sure.
I’m late today – your evening has started already. – I like the bird’s cage being surounded by the gardians: Left and right dogs and a cat on the roof – very well protected birds. Oh, Poppy is a true mother, it is such a gift to be able to watch her behaviour, isn’t it? And it comes from deep inside her, no one has taught her to act like this.
And you “High as a kite” – I laughed when I visualized that mentally. And the “tank full of boyfriend straws” made me laugh again. – Oh yes, it is a great experience with the cows and you have been telling it so nicely. – It will be a tantalizing wait whether they got it or not. And then you will have two baby cows all of a sudden…
We are here waiting for an anounced heavy thunderstorm what caused already a lot of damage in several parts of the country…
Have a good night, Celi and all.
Especially beautiful photos, today. Thank you.
Seems to me life in general is somewhat like Lego… stacking and fitting things together so they make form & function… and don’t fall over!
It’s happened that way in offices I’ve worked in – so many people pregnant at the same time, you start thinking about what’s in the water 😉
‘Good mucous’; ‘lego’. I think I’m beginning to understand why the Taranaki farmers are blokes of very few words.
Fingers crossed for the breeding. It’s very funny the way you describe the procedures and the antics.
So lovely to share your day full of honest hard work and joyful beginnings, not to mention ice cream. Thank you.
Wow, THAT is a day when Things Went Well! Very satisfying 🙂
I never knew young turkeys are so adorable! Yay on heat–and breeding! Auntie Del has grown up so fast. Poppy is such a good mommy! Who knew!