Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Butter is the Best!

Butter is the real deal. You can't beat the taste of real butter for cooking and baking. It's a very simple food, the ingredient in butter is cream (and sometimes salt). It's real food. Maybe that's why butter consumption has increased across the country.

Butter has received lots of attention lately, check out these articles featuring the delicious golden gem:
Ending the War on Fat, Time Magazine
This article substantiates the fact that whole milk and butter is good for you.

“Changing views of nutrition are turning butter into one of the great comeback stories in U.S. food history. Humans have been eating butter for millennia, valuing its ability to store longer than most meat and its utility as a flavoring.” 

7 Reasons Why Butter is Good For You, Authority Nutrition  
This article lists the attributes of butter including some of its health benefits.

Speaking of butter, tomorrow is the first day of the Ohio State Fair where the famous butter cow display will be revealed. The American Dairy Association Mideast, an organization supported by Ohio dairy farmers, has done a butter cow display since 1903. For many, a highlight of the fair is seeing what unique display will be carved out of butter each year. 
The Butter Cow display at the 2014 Ohio State Fair

This year there was a contest to name the butter cow and calf. Submissions were made via Twitter using the hashtag #ButterCowNameGame. The winning names are Scarlet for the cow, and Grayce for the calf. For those not from Ohio, scarlet and gray are The Ohio State University colors.

The 2014 display features symbols of Ohio

The cow and calf watch over the display

The stars of the display Grayce and Scarlet
If you are going the Ohio State Fair, be sure to visit the butter cow display, take a selfie and tweet it with the hashtag #ButterCowSelfieContest. This year’s display features 15 symbols representing the history, character and spirit of Ohio, including a carnation, cardinal, whitetail deer, and tomato among others. This display was created using 2,033 pounds of butter.

In addition to this wonderful butter display, the American Dairy Association Mideast building offers ice cream, streams dairy farmer videos, has an Ag Is Cool Station for kids and more. It’s worth your time to stop in.

Click here to see a video featuring the butter cow display.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Coming Soon. . . Rowdy Cow Creamery

Rowdy Cow Creamery, our new on-farm milk processing facility, is progressing. The equipment installation is almost complete and we’re excited to start bottling milk soon! We have a few more steps before we’re ready to go, but I wanted to give you a progress report.

Here’s a look at the recent happenings. . .
The bottle filler equipment was delivered and unloaded
Lad moves the bottle filler onto the porch
The bottle filler arrives in the Creamery
This equipment will fill bottles with our fresh milk
The pipeline transports fresh milk from our cows to the vat pasteurizer
The Creamery is almost ready to bottle milk!
The Rowdy Cow Creamery crates are ready to be filled with bottles of milk
Soon, I hope to be sharing photos of us bottling milk! Stay tuned. . . .

Thursday, June 19, 2014

June at the Dairy – Crops, Tours, Parties, 4-H & Kittens

The last few weeks have been full of action at our farm. These images share the activity we’ve enjoyed during the last few weeks.  

Garrett and the other Geauga Dairymen 4-H club members started working with their animals. This involves petting and brushing them. Then getting a halter on to lead them around when they are ready.

Garrett with Lucy (the black & white heifer) and Vanessa (red & white heifer)
Garrett and Jack brush the heifers
Jack connects with Lucy, the heifer Garrett showed at the Fair in 2013
Jack and Garrett hold two of the new kittens at the farm
Jack loves the kittens!
Farm cat, Peaches, with her babies
The 4-H boys play with the kittens while the cows watch
The planting of our corn and Sudan grass crops is complete for 2014! These crops are emerging from the soil. It's a great feeling to see the crops growing. The weather is cooperating this year!

Corn emerging from the soil
The corn crop
We've been busy with tours. In the last few weeks, we've hosted nine groups on our farm.

Students watch cows in the milking parlor, the cows are curious about the students too!
Jack shows the students a milking machine while they observe the milking process
Students watching the cows milking
A Day Camp group having lunch in the Parlor Room
Visitors interacting with the calves
My Dad gives visitors a ride around the farm
College Dietetic Interns say hello to the heifers
Young visitors enjoy the tractor on the playground
Fun on the tire snake
My sons are out of school for the summer. They invited some of their friends to the farm to celebrate the last day of school.

My Dad gives another wagon ride through the barn. Thanks Dad!
Jack and his buddies in the corn box
Rowdy boys on the parlor balcony
This calf really likes Ben!
Jack's buddies are ready for a ride on the train
The celebration of June Dairy Month continues!

The boys climbing on the hay bales
The center of our farm . . . the cows. We love our cows!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

What's Happening on the Farm?

We been experiencing beautiful weather all week. The sunshine allowed lots of field work and corn planting. It's a great start to June Dairy Month! In honor of celebrating dairy, here's a glimpse of what's happening at the farm. . .

The calves come to greet me when I enter their pen
Heifers relax in their open air barn
Content cows
A newborn calf with her mom in the maternity pen
The milk truck taking milk to the processing plant where it will become cheese
Fixing a tractor; busy field work = equipment repairs & flat tires
I love this picture of my husband, Lad, & sons, Jack and Garrett
Filling the planter with corn seed
Heading out to the field to continue corn planting
The vat pasteurizer; equipment installation continues in the new milk processing plant
A group of Kindergartners had fun at the farm during their tour
There is lots of activity at the farm. It's busy but rewarding. Help us celebrate June Dairy Month by enjoying delicious dairy products!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Dry Spring Days = Perfect Farming Conditions

The last week has been dry and warm which is great weather for farming. This spring has been wet in Northeast Ohio, so there hasn’t been much field work happening until about a week ago.

When the weather provides a window of opportunity, it’s necessary to spend longer hours than normal at the farm. Over the last week, many hours have been spent mowing & raking rye grass, hauling manure, plowing, disking, cultimulching, repairing equipment, and planting corn.

Taylor rakes rye grass that will be baled and fed to the cows and heifers
Lad plowing where the rye grass was harvested
Jack checking the mounds of freshly plowed soil
Plowing another field
My boys, Jack and Garrett, playing in the grass lining the fields

Josue disking
Lad, Taylor and Josue repairing the disk
Jack watches the men work
The disk is fixed and back in the field

Taylor cultimulching
The cultimulcher is a finishing tool used just prior to planting
Thanks to fellow motorists who are understanding of farm equipment on the road
Lad planting our first field of corn for the season!
Lad and Jack check for the corn seed as my Dad waits for the report

Lad measures the depth the corn seeds being planted
Planting corn
My dedicated, hard working husband Lad

Thanks to Taylor, Josue and Dave who work long hours daily to make sure the crops get in the ground. Also to my dad, Tony, who helps keep all the equipment working. Growing good crops is vital to provide our cows with the feed they need to thrive.

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