So, I am BEYOND
super duper ridiculously happy to finally have our very own family milk cow. We have been dreaming of having one for several years and it finally came true. We’ve spent the last couple of months prepping the homestead for Gertie’s arrival. We have been busy building fence, sawing trees and lumber, and building a barn. We still have to get the barn finished and a raised stanchion built over the next couple of weekends.
Gertie came home on the day that we finished building her fence…..good timing! She and her calf, Annie, settled right in. She is on a once a day milking schedule so that is a nice way to ease into a milking routine and build up my hand strength. I can’t wait to get the stanchion built, it will be so nice.
Gertie is great at standing still for me while I milk her but the stanchion will make it much easier. Gertie’s udder is pretty low hanging so by building a raised stanchion we can get her teats at a good level for me sitting on my milking stool. Things are going really well with Gertie and we are enjoying her milk. We have made mozzarella a couple of times and are still working on perfecting it. Our first yogurt trial was sub-par. The farm kids still ate it all even though the consistency was lack luster. I made the most delicious half and half ever too. I’m so excited to learn how to make all of these yummy dairy items and share them with you!
I ordered these nylon paint strainers to place over my large pail while milking. It keeps bugs and dirt from getting in the milk and it also serves as a first filter for the milk. I got this stainless steel funnel with a strainer in it to strain the milk into jars once we bring it in the house. Tonya was so nice and lent me her pails for milking until mine arrive. They are on order but haven’t come yet.
We spent our weekend getting some feed and supplies for Gertie since she just came home last week. We also picked up the metal roofing that we had ordered for the barn. Farmer Derek was able to go get some nice alfalfa hay with our friends Tonya and David. Gertie will really appreciate that when the grass is so much less lush this winter. Tonya’s husband, David, is a logger and offered to help Derek saw the rest of our lumber for the barn on a saw mill. We were ecstatic to hear this. Being able to use a full size saw mill is SO much faster than an Alaskan chainsaw mill.
I will be so glad when we are finished with all of these big projects. It has been fun and exciting but a LOT of hard work. It will be nice to settle in for the winter with a nice cozy barn, stanchion, and milking routine.
P.S. I love my cow!
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