Who’s Idea Was It?

I called my nephew today and asked him who’s idea it was to calve in March.  You might remember I told you that Norma Jean could calve March 5th if she were bred the day she was put in with the bull.  A week ago, I didn’t think she looked too close (that’s when all these pictures are from).  I thought she might wait until closer to the end of the month.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

I think it was wishful thinking.  Looking at her today, I wouldn’t be surprised if she calved at any time.  I am really hoping she waits at least until next week because we are stupid cold again.  She might.  It’s hard to tell with heifers, and especially when their udders don’t drop as much in the cold.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

My brother-in-law already had one of the heifers calve, and they lost the calf because of the cold.  In these temperatures, you only have about an hour to get it dried off.  We have record-breaking cold again tonight.  They’re saying about -20*F/-28.9*C real temperatures by morning.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

My nephew told me that a farmer a few miles from us was trying to keep his calves from freezing their ears because he sells them as breeding stock and he thinks they sell better if they don’t have short ears.  He’s putting stocking caps on their ears and tying them on with pantyhose.  He also froze his hand to the calf puller when he was helping deliver one.  It’s just stupid cold.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

It’s crazy.  These temperatures are about 35* below our historical averages.  Usuallly, it’s pretty safe to have them calve in March.  I’ve told Norma Jean to keep her tail down and her legs crossed for another week.  I also asked my nephew to check her during the day when I’m at work and told my son to check her every time he drives by.  I’ll be checking her quite frequently too.  With any luck, this will all turn out okay.

Sharing with Shadow Shot Sunday and Farmgirl Friday

If You Wait Ten Minutes

1.  You’ve heard the expression, “If you don’t like the weather in Iowa, just wait ten minutes.”  Well, yesterday, that was the truth.  We woke to fog, had rain, sleet, hail, snow and wind.  It was a very sloppy weather day.

foggy pasture

foggy morning

rain on windshield

rain in the morning

muddy gravel road in fog

mud puddles on the gravel road


hail late in the morning

2.  About two weeks ago, I forgot my appointment to get my taxes done. I’d say I can’t believe I forgot the appointment, but that was the time I was dealing with a minor crisis each evening.  I dropped them off, and I got the letter yesterday that they had them finished.  I have awesome tax people.  I knew they’d get it done before the farm taxes are due the first of March.


Rain, but I didn’t photograph the scary to the ground lightening or thunder.


rain and sleet sliding down the window

rain, sleet and hail

rain, sleet and hail all at once

sloppy gravel road

made the gravel roads even worse

3.  I need to have my bulk bin filled with corn again.  I’m a bit nervous about that because the bin is in a tough spot to fill (nearby electric wire).  The driver is not very good at problem solving.  I’m seriously afraid of how this will all turn out, especially now that there’s more ice than snow.


The snow arrived in the afternoon,

giant snowflake

in giant snowball like flakes.

snowy barn

Everyone has been stuck inside all day.

4.  Have I mentioned that I ordered new chicks for the spring?  After losing a couple this winter, I’m down to twelve.  By the time new ones arrive and grow up, it will be winter again. Well, I’ll have too many eggs again eventually.  In the meantime, I’m getting an occasional egg.  So far, Honey hasn’t laid any in the kitchen.

snow by deck rail

Birds will get more food tomorrow when it isn’t just dumped and covered with snow.


Then the winds picked up. See the snow going sideways.

5.  I found out today that Norma Jean could calve anytime after March 5th.  Well, I hope the weather changes and she has no problems.  I’m really not excited about helping a wild heifer give birth and hauling a calf in the back of the Ranger to my kitchen to dry it off.  But you know I will if I have to!

Sharing with Random 5 Friday and Farmgirl Friday.

Some Friday Randomness

I’m still struggling to get anything done besides work and chores, which is why my posts tend to be so late.  The cold just drains my energy, and the snow boots and hard ground leave my toe in pain.  I’m grateful for strong anti-inflammatory pills.  I’d be even more grateful for spring.  Yes, that is Norma Jean’s breath you see in the photo below.

Norma Jean

Norma Jean

I think I’m going to try to get the Ranger and snowplow into the barnyard this weekend to rearrange a bunch of snow.  That might make it easier to do chores again.



With all the wine we have fermenting in the basement, I figured out that I didn’t have enough space.  My wine rack that holds 110 bottles will be full soon, so I’ve asked my dad to make another.  This one is even going to be new wood and finished!  How cool is that!

wine on rack

Vinnie is half of the  set of twins that from the time they were born, they got in so much trouble that I only call them by their nicknames (Pistol and Vinnie).  I’ve been warning Vinnie that she’s getting too round to fit in the manger anymore.  She didn’t listen.  There might have been some swearing when I came home and found her stuck.  Luckily, my boy brought a saw and all was well again.



The chicken has discovered the register vents.  She loves them!   For some reason, though, I keep finding buff colored feathers all over my house.



I still stink at cell phone pictures. I don’t know how people do it.

Sharing with Random 5 Friday, Farmgirl Friday, Saturday’s Critters and Camera Critters.

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The information on this web site is supplied for general reference and educational purposes only. This information does not represent the management practices or thinking of other goat breeders or the veterinary community. I am not a veterinarian, and the information on this site is not intended to replace professional veterinary advice. This information is not intended to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your veterinarian. I disclaim all liability in connection with the use of this information.