It’s not unknown for life to get a bit hectic around here. The pandemic, however, has thrown several extra wrinkles into various operations. The last few weeks have been a good bit hairier than normal.
First, our new milk cow arrived. Kaia is a Dutch Belted/Jersey cross. I shared a picture when I did my Solstice Update post. Not only was she a new-to-us cow, she was a first-calf heifer. In other words, regular midwifery checks, including in the middle of the night. We needed to spend enough time with her to get well acquainted. We also needed to start easing her into the milking routine. You do that sort of thing by grooming, playing with her udder, leading her into the milking shed and teaching her to stand in the stanchion. Since we prefer to machine milk, it also meant fixing the compressor and getting her used to the sound of it running next to her. Not to mention training her to wear the surcingle with the milker hanging from it and having the cups attached to her teats. Our original plan was that I would take a couple of weeks off when she calved, but I hired a new RN at the clinic and I’m the only one who can orient her.
Other problem being that the irrigation system was down and hubby had been struggling to get the new pipe laid. Pipe-laying took precedence and he still wasn’t completely finished when Kaia calved on July 26th. Luckily, she had no trouble and even calved in the late afternoon. Hubby named her bull calf Sleepless in July, as he’d been doing the night watches. Once July was born, Kaia decided she wasn’t going to be caught for any more of those lessons. Silly cow. Hubby roped her and took her and her offspring down to the small corral.
Milking lessons proceeded, much to her disgust. These people were committing indignities upon her person! We’re now just shy of a month and she’s doing much better, but still kicking several times during the milking process.
Then hubby came down with COVID. My dear daughter and her younger kids cleaned out the office addition in the old house and set him up an isolation unit. I scrubbed and disinfected our current house. I loaded him up with vitamin C, vitamin D, oscilliococcinium and extra elderberry syrup. He tried to keep up with the chores but it got to be too much. Luckily, the kids – both in high school – are on a schedule where they only physically go to school twice a week. So they did morning chores except for two days, when I did them. Hubby continued the milking lessons and kept working on the irrigation system.
Of course, the garden is in high gear, so I had to deal with that. One morning at 4AM I was making elderberry syrup (hubby been treating his COVID and had gone through my supply) with one hand, blanching and freezing beans with my second hand and doing the dishes with my third hand. Since I don’t have a third hand (darn it) it was an interesting dance.
Anyway, that’s why I’m behind with the blog and a lot of other things (we won’t even mention housework).