The Little Queen

Yesterday for the first time since she gave birth to her little daughter Txiki, Alex stood at the gate looking at the other cows and mooed with longing to them. It was a long soft sound. She was ready to go out and join her herd.  So I opened her gate and she slipped through the gap without hesitation,  her calf leaping ahead silently and fearlessly her head waving gaily like a little queen on a float.  The other cows ambled slowly across and sniffed the new addition,  then they all inhaled the sweet milky new mother fragrance that swirled around Alex, then they sniffed at the air, checked the direction of the wind and back they went to grazing and generally lying about.  cows

Alex and her baby slipped seamlessly into her usual position in the group. And for the moment all was right with the bovine world.
cows and calf

Like all toddlers in a group of adults Txiki trotted to and fro playing with everyone getting treats and kisses from all her new Aunties before collapsing into a heap to sleep. cow and calf

Her mother watching over her with that long breath of patience.

Carlos the Tiny will have to leave in a few days and go to the other side of course. I do not want Alex bred back too early so he will have to go into seclusion for a few months so there are no accidents.

lady astor

I don’t think Lady will be calving early, her udder has a ways to go yet.

Same with Poppy. I think we will be waiting for another four weeks.  Nothing happening here.


I am sorry about the cut off head. When shooting for an image of Hop ‘n Pop Poppy one has to work very fast  – below is the shot I usually get.

She is an In Your Face kind of pig.  “In a pigs eye.” she says wondering what the hell that could mean. And what it has to do with pigs.

pig's eye

Conor worked extremely hard yesterday.  He and Inaki got piles of work done. The first garden is now completely finished and today we move to Garden Number Two which has the blackberries and raspberries and blueberries in it. I have collected our 25 new meat chickens and they are now in Conors capable care. He is also working on building them a new chicken tractor as the old one is showing serious signs of wear and tear.  After finishing the planting Inaki spent the better part of the day turning our enormous mountain of compost with the tractor. And with the help of Conor that mountain will continue to grow daily.

Last night we had our first feed of asparagus with hollandaise sauce.  Though neither of our visiting young men like asparagus particularly they loved it with the hollandaise.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi




43 Comments on “The Little Queen

  1. Hollandaise does make everything taste better! We have gorgeous white asparagus everywhere at the market and today I spotted the first green ones. Will buy some next week.

  2. I just love that you could see that Alex wanted to return to her herd and that she communicated it to you. The animals are so lucky to have you. Hollandaise does make everything better 🙂

  3. My first comment went AWOL. Yummy … farm fresh asparagus and happy cows and babies. Over here Poppy need only worry when she hears “in a pigs ear” 🙂 Laura

  4. Jock doesn’t like asparagus, so I don’t get to eat it except in the occasional restaurant. You feed your Woofers on the fat of the land.
    I love that picture of Alex standing over Tziki to give her some shade. Clever Mum.
    What I thought was the farmer cutting silage was in fact making hay (on 17th April?). He tured it yesterday and again today,
    and the sun has beamed down on it. So I dare say it will be baled tomorrow. There are still night frosts, but I assume he knows what he’s doing!
    Enjoy your day,
    ViV xox

  5. Asparagus freshly snapped off from the garden!!! Nothing better!!! We are eating ours too!!! 🙂

  6. Everything is better with BUTTER on it, right? I would have eaten you out of asparagus and been growling at anyone even looking at my plate! It’s one of the few vegetables that I can make myself sick on. Southern cooked greens is another one….. The picture of Alex with a sleeping baby makes me think of a new Mom, exhausted but yet so happy. She has that ‘new mom’ hair!

  7. I would work very hard too for a treat of fresh asparagus with hollandaise 😀

  8. Mmmmm…. Asparagus. Our favorite way to eat Asparagus is to generously drizzle it with olive oil, salt & pepper, then oven-roast until the tips are slightly crispy. Sometimes we’ll add a sprinkling of freshly chopped rosemary, if we happen to have any on hand. (Rosemary is the ONE herb I can’t seem to grow.)

    • Where do you live? Here in Sacramento, California, one takes a sprig of rosemary and sticks it in dirt and waters it. Love, Gayle

    • Love roasted asparagus! I add a squeeze of lemon juice and sliced crimini mushrooms. I got high praise for it from my chef son-in-law, made my day!

  9. Nice that the cows accepted Alex and her baby so nicely. Lucky to have strong, willing help. I love asparagus any way I can get it.

  10. So often I find that foods I did not care for in the past (especially as a child), I have a renewed desire to try and actually like when simply prepared in a different manner perhaps by incorporating a different spice or sauce. I love how you described Alex’s longing to be with the herd family again, and how Txiki was quite social and readily accepted by her new family. And finally, the gift of scent. Isn’t it just beautiful to observe any animal “catching scent”? The wild mammals do it often… it carries so much importance in survival and sensing danger.

    • I have found that I like most veggies now where I didn’t like hardly any as a child. I believe it’s because my mom’s method of cooking them was ‘boil them to mush’. In general they are ever so much better roasted or lightly sautee’d.

  11. Oh C! Please do share your hollandaise sauce recipe with us. I have never made it! GASP! 🙂 That little queen is quite adorable!

  12. Another wonderfully rendered story with pictures. Just so touching the way you pay close attention. And so interesting that Alex actually wanted back into the fold, even though she was/is pretty stand-offish–and that she was willing to trust them to welcome her baby. Amazing creatures, aren’t they.

  13. Ahhh poor Carlos — well, and Alex too, when he goes. That first photo under your header seems to show the two being closer with each other than with the others. I wonder if that has to do with size and feeling more comfortable with one’s kind.
    Oh my, asparagus already! I will have to check out the supermarket for it… I am envious! No hollandaise for me, just melted butter dripping from it. Does that make me a purist? lol
    I notice Ton in the field with the herd… is he watching over the wee calf too? Or is that just the border collie in him making sure that all are alright?
    Hope you have a lovely day too. ~ Mame 🙂

  14. I am soooooooooooooo happy to be “back in the saddle” of the farmy after three weeks away from home with not enough data! Much love, Your Gayle

  15. Driving down one of the side roads here, past a dairy farm, my sister and I saw a cow giving birth in the field. We stopped the car on the side of the road to see better. One by one, all the other cows in that field came over and lined up between us and the new mom, forming a protective wall. They simply stood and stared at us until we left the vicinity.

  16. Ooh, envy you your asparagus – we have four months to go to the first spring crops! Doing my monthly on line food shopping last week noticed some v cheap for Australia – thought some must be growing in the northern part of the continent? Oh, it looked good and tasted alright: but I surely hated to see the ‘Grown in Mexico’ label! Far too big a footprint for this greenie!!! [So glad Chickie is accepted by all her aunties!]

    • I’m with you Eha – too big a footprint and I’m only in Canada, not nearly as far as you are. And on top of it, I’m never sure of the quality, it never tastes as good as local. Also there has been enough in the news about their growing practices and food contamination that I don’t buy anything from there. Another couple of weeks and I’ll get local asparagus that I can eat to my heart’s content. steamed, roasted, raw, salt, butter, hollandaise, olive oil, sundried tomatoes, lemon juice – bring it on, I have no limits to ideas for those green sticks!!!
      Chris S in Canada

      • Enjoy!!!! I have to be a wee diplomatic here as I have a number of wonderful foodie blogfriends, mostly US expats, in the country *huge smile* 🙂 🙂 !! Australia so far is much better as far the contaminants are concerned . . . our consumption is less with smaller health scares . . . but I sure got an unpleasant shock when I read that label . . . kept thinking of all those poor stalks in some freighter’s hold forever . . . .thanks for your comment!! And I surely will read more carefully before spending my moneys . . .

        • Yes, I get the “diplomatic” thing. It’s just a little too scary when I read about some of their ways. And really, local stuff always tastes better. Unfortunately for me, that means not many avocados because most of them in my grocery stores also come from Mexico. Sometimes I find them from California, now and again from (I think) Peru or somewhere else. I try hard to keep tabs on how different countries manage their agriculture, but I’m sure we don’t always get it right. I am wondering if your “foodie” friends are buying local – as opposed to what is grown commercially for export? Could make a difference in the end product they get. I’ll bet everyone who reads this blog is careful with their money, we try to balance good value with good values – right?
          Chris S in Canada

  17. Absolutely! That’s just how the new mama knows it’s time to return and just how the herd treats the new baby and how the aunties indulge it. You’ve captured a small part of my world on your farm, so beautifully. Again.

  18. Such peace. I think I could live that life, breathe that air. i think…How to you pronounce Txiki? The picture of her lying (it appears under but I’m thinking she’s actually) next to her mother is a beauty.

  19. Sweet baby! Alex is a good mama, apparently. So glad you have extra hands helping out.

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