Is it December already?

The fall and harvest time seemed to fly by. (It is still fall!)

We just finished our Thanksgiving and turned the calendar page to December. We were lucky to get most our late crops harvested, but still had oats to get in and this has proved to be challenging. Our haybine has broken down again and our son’s self-propelled haybine also broke down with one and 1/2 rows left in the field. I guess we were supposed to leave this grain for the deer and wild turkeys.

We are conscious of the very unsettling weather all over the country. The turbulent weather that locked in Dallas and most of the country has now made its way to New Jersey. On Sunday, snowflakes started to fall before lunchtime and quickly covered everything. We settled in to watch the Eagles football game. The field was covered and blizzard-like conditions continued through most of the game. We ended up getting over 8″ of heavy, wet snow.

143 years old, our barn is five generations strong and can withstand tough New Jersey weather, protecting our dairy cows.

143 years old, our barn is five generations strong and can withstand tough New Jersey weather, protecting our dairy cows.

Snow and ice are always a challenge on a farm – people and animals slip and fall – but our biggest concern is a feed delivery by tractor trailer and getting our milk truck in the yard at 4 a.m. We put in a call to our township road coordinator to alert them about the snow and ice covered roads to our farm. (We experienced a jackknifed milk tractor trailer some years back when black ice set in. We hope to avoid this kind of problem.) Our farm yard is small and a challenge to get the rig in and backed around to the milk house area.

Cold weather is not generally a problem for dairy cattle – but nasty, wet rain or snow is a whole different challenge. We don’t generally have such severe cold this early in the NJ Atlantic area.

So, today we put on another sweater under our heavy coat and pull up our hood and head for the barn – hoping the water pipes hold and have not frozen.

We thank God for another day in our life on our dairy farm in New Jersey.

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