Wednesday, January 26, 2011


" Winding up days with toil and nights with sleep."
                                     William Shakespeare

  It is 4 am; usually I am sleeping till 6. Not today. I am sitting here with hot packs warming in the microwave. The extreme cold and busyness have caught up with me.
 My arms and chest are aching. My chest feels like a vise tightening around it. The Fibro has let me know it has not gone away; again.
 I have probably been doing too much "lugging and lifting" as my Mom always says. It is impossible not to in this line of work, especially at calving time.
 Calves wandering off the bedding, heading to the bush, usually following their Mothers. I have to find them, get them up, and push them back to the others.
 Sometimes this is very easy, other times like Tuesday this is not. He was a stubborn, strong one and he fought me all the way.
 He had followed his Mother back when she went to get a drink, I found him lying in the deep snow in the bush.
 I pick him up; (he weighs about 80 lbs.) and get behind him and direct him to his Mom.I push he runs back, we play this game for quite awhile.
 I know you are thinking,"Why?"

  Sometimes especially with the young Mothers, they do not realize they have forgotten their calf. Not a problem when it is warm, but in this extreme cold it is not a good thing. He would have been fine for a little while but he could freeze and starve. Just like us they need more food in the cold.
 There are a couple of coyote tracks all around, we have not had any problems and I want to keep it that way. I check them every four hours, sometimes more if I am expecting a problem.
 Anyway; I get the calf closer to the bedding; he sees his Mom and runs to her. I watch him be greeted with lots of licks and mooing, then right to lunch.
 I keep watch; he finally finishes then finds a nice pile of thick bedding to lie on. All is well. (Your Welcome).
  I see another calf lying on not enough bedding, so I peel off some layers of the round bale and throw around her.
 Yes farming is hard work, I usually can handle it but the cold is taking its toll.

 When the sun comes up I will head back, hoping everything is going well.I will check the bush.
 I will come back to the house, hopefully get a little rest, and then head back to do it all over again.



  1. Poor calf! We do not have such bitter cold here but I remember having to go and count the cattle, put out some hay and chop a hole in the ice when the weather was well below freezing for awhile. It is very hard work.

  2. You take care now Buttons and rest when you can. Everything that's not essential can wait. do you ever get a massage? a really gentle one with nice warming essential oils?

  3. OMG - that is amazing! Our calves are tonguing from the heat, and yours are in snow!!!!!

    Truly incredible... thanks so much for visiting me at Granite Glen.


  4. ahhh 80 lbs in weight!! that's heavy, but I can see the reason for having to get the calf on its feet.
    Hope the coyotes keep away.

  5. I know this sounds mean but if you grab the calf's ear that is furthest away from you and twist it at the same time you grab it's tail and pull it straight up it's back towards it's ears it will move,usually quickly, and hopefully towards it's mother. Ignore it's bellows and use the ear to steer it if you have to but 5 mins of just enough pain to move it to where it should be will save it's life and hopefully save your back. Good luck and you'll soon know the calves tolerance levels like I know our Brahman calves' levels.


The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

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