Letting Go after the Death of One’s Cow: A Lovely Tribute

Letting go is probably the hardest part of keeping a family cow. Whether by making the decision to beef or put-down an older and/or injured cow, or by natural death, or even by selling or giving her away to a very good home; saying Good-bye is often like losing a cherished family member. The following tribute by Tiffiany Walker gives us a beautiful inside view of the gratitude and grief she feels after the loss of Lovely Cow.Lovely close-up For those who knew Lovely and those who fell in love with her stories, those who watched as they drove by and those who’ve had the blessing of being touched by her love…Our story began together, almost not, 3 years ago when our family was given the most unexpected gift, a dairy cow lactating 3 gallons of milk a day, easy. Completely new to the care of cattle or any large animal the learning curve was steep and educational. We have learned how to work a way of life that sustained our ancestors, into a world too fast for our own good. In the busy morning rush taking a minute to hug and smell her, or while in the sun warming her in the meadow taking a minute to soak it up with her, bringing her in the barn on quiet snowy afternoons and most recently feeling complete comfort in watching her give another cowlick to one of her own, something we could only let Lovely do with jeans on. The stories are endless and so deeply engrained in our lives, each of us here.

So, in her passing over the weekend these memories we hold to a little tighter. Letting go of a family cowDeborah Tyler, thank you so very much for a most cherished gift our family could have and the little kisses from Rebecca Jean.

Thank you Tiffiany for showing us a beautifully respectful and loving way of letting go.

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On reclaiming mud: Election edition – Clea Fowler

Dig this poetry by Clea Fowler! To keep up on the latest mud, come to the Motherhouse Old-Style Life-Skills Series Workshop: To Boast of Compost on June 14, 2016 at R own Local Farm where we’ll learn about building soil health from using green manure, to “Lasagne Gardening,” to vermiculture, to Rudolph Steiner’s biodynamic approach, to Permaculture’s chicken tractors. Upcycle used materials to build a bin and go home with red wriggler worms to kick-start your own compost.

On reclaiming mud: Election edition. (5/23/2016)

Slogging through the
Quagmire
the Quicksand
Fecundity Mainstream
Mudslinging
Diggin’ up the dirt
Washed up
All wet
Dirty Dirty Politics.

And whose hands are clean?
This hearty May,
when gardens are beckoning,
i judge any whose fingernails are too clean.

My heroes wear spades and edging tools
they are busy drawing lines.
Those that have an eye
to the future
and can make the brutal cuts.

Those that KNOW these decisions
must be made,
again, and again.

The grass is never greener on the other side.
Because the only side they know is the one that they fully own, and understand.
The green side they give their full attention
devotion
and dirty fingernails to.

Fear not, naysayers.
My heroes dream of nothing
but good things growing.

These really are their dreams
at night,
under the moon
go ahead and dig into their unconscious.
with forks or bare fingers

Food to feed the masses.
You can’t plant your investment portfolio
but it might grow, too.

Planting aesthetic gardens
Beauty in responsibility

The way a pumpkin leaf curls into a cone before a rain
so the rain is directed down.

Directed down to where the better of us can understand
that rain is desperately needed.

What do grassroots grow in?
organic material.
soil.
earth.

built to deflect the reign,
and bring on the rain.

-Thank you. xo.

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Chronicles of Little Man

The Story of a Calf with a Broken Leg and His Caregiver, Alex

One day, when Alex went out to the Valley to move the cows to a new paddock and fresh grass, he found a newborn calf with a broken leg. Carefully, he wiped it off and carried it to a shady spot under a tree. Neighbors started worrying about the calf out there all by itself, and called me. Not realizing its leg was broken, I assured them that mother cows usually hide their calves in the grass and only visit occasionally to feed them. This calf was bright-eyed and had a full belly so I wasn’t concerned. However, Alex and his mom watched it limping to suckle and became quite concerned. calf with a broken leg car-ride to vetThey put him in the backseat of their car and drove it to Dr. Hayden who confirmed its leg was broken. bottle feeding a calf with a broken legAlex named him Little Man and brought him to stay in the barn at Local Farm where he’d be out of the elements and there was plenty of milk.calf with a broken leg in a thompson splintThe next day, we took him back to the vet to have his leg splinted.feeding splinted calf with a broken legAlex came to the farm twice a day every day to feed and walk Little Man.calf with a broken leg rides in carBecause Little Man licked and chewed on the tape holding his splint in place, his good foot would catch in it and bend the whole contraption. Riding to the vet to have it readjusted and taped became a regular thing for Little Man.Calf with a broken leg visits his herdWhile they were out, Alex and his mom would take Little Man to visit his herd…thomson Schroeder splint on calf with a broken legand his human friends in the village.walking splinted calf with a broken legAt Local Farm, he and Alex explored the grounds…calf with broken leg meeting his hostsand met the Local Farm cows.splint comes off calf with a broken legSix weeks later, Dr. Hayden removed the splint and sent him back to Local Farm to continue healing!Alex and Little Man visiting Mama cowOn the way back to Local Farm, they stopped by The Valley to visit Little Man’s mother.calf with a broken leg drinking at a CALFeteriaAt the farm, Little Man gained a new roommate named Magnus.
Together, they’d share a drink at the Local CALFeteria!healed calf with a broken leg frolics… and frolic in the pasture…
calves in pasturewhere they became fast friends.moving a calf in a trailerWhen Little Man, the calf with the broken leg, was finally strong enough to go back to his herd, Alex loaded him in a trailer,using a gator to haul a calf…and drove him back home to the village and his kine.

running calf…and that’s the end of this tail!

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FARM-tastic Birthday Adventure

cow hugsGeorgia has been fascinated with cows ever since discovering the playful nature of a young steer while she was volunteering at Stamford Nature Center. As a special treat, her family arranged for a farm birthday party at Local Farm. Here are some photos of Georgia, her husband Matt, and their daughter Audrey; shMOOzing with MOOcows, walking calves, and cuddling with Vulture the hen…  all in all: a FARMtastic Birthday adventure!
Local Farm 1-5Local FarmLocal Farm 2-6Local Farm 2-1Local Farm 3-2

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Blood Moon over Local Farm

full moon eclipseFull moon eclipse over the farm – captured by Lazlo

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