Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Our Herd Increases

There is a baby boom at Bremer Farms!
We have had 28 calves born in 26 days.

 Each calf weighs about 90 pounds and can stand and walk, all within minutes of being born. Our newborn calves are fed colostrum, which is the first milk from the mama cow. Calves receive colostrum within hours of birth to receive antibodies from their mom, which protect them against disease in their early life. During the cold winter months each calf is outfitted with a coat to help them stay warm and comfortable.

 Like snowflakes, no two calves have exactly the same pattern of spots. This little cutie, although red and white is still a Holstein. Typically Holstein cows and calves are black and white, however the red and white Holsteins are a product of recessive genes. Do you see the black spot to the right of this calf? That's her calf coat...the coat that is supposed to keep her warm. Yep, this little stinker shimmied out of it, but not for long. After this picture was taken, she was bundled up again. We want our babies to be comfy!

Speaking of increasing the herd-

Here is the newest additions to my "indoor" herd. Since we live on a dairy farm, cows just keep appearing! Family and friends see them, and before you can say "Moo" they are in my hands. You see, if you know me, you know I love cows, and sometimes it's nice to enjoy the kind you don't have to feed or clean-up after! Thanks to church friends Turney and Ruth, co-worker Barb, and cousin Alex for the new bovines!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The BIG Reveal

Today's the day I share with you about my Christmas In The Country Secret Santa gift exchange. Remember? I wrote about Christmas In The Country, explaining that I would be matched with another blogger from across the country who I would send a gift to. My mission was to explore her blog to learn about her interests and likes, and then mail her a surprise Christmas gift that not only "fit" her, but shared a bit about me.

I sent my gift to Kay Schrock from A Ranch Mom. Kay lives on a ranch in Wyoming with her real life cowboy husband and 4 adorable children. This is what I sent to Kay and her family.

And here is the note I included to Ranch Mom Kay. 
It explains why I chose this gift for her.

After sending the gift off to Kay in Wyoming, it was my turn to wait to see where and who my gift was from. 
Drum roll please...my gift was from Kay in Wyoming!
Yep, we had each others names in the gift exchange.
This is the gift I received from Kay, the Ranch Mom.

And here's my note from Kay...

My gift was great!  I mean who doesn't like cute notepaper, chocolate (!!) and new socks with no holes, but my favorite part of the gift was the note cards Kay had made from a photo she took on the ranch. When you see her blog, A Ranch Mom you will discover her love of photography, and these cards are a beautiful way to share a peek at the ranch. Thanks, Kay!

Thanks also to the organizers of Christmas in the Country 2014
Sign me up for 2015, please!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014 Gone But Not Forgotten

 Top Ten Most Viewed Posts For 2014
Haven't read them? Click on the titles!
10. Think Outside The (Pizza) Box Some facts and a few suggestions for National Pizza Pie Day.
9. Waiting To Get Our Hands Dirty How much does it cost, and what do we do to prepare for Spring planting season?
8. Why Do We Do What We Do? Why are we dairy farmers so passionate about what we do? Learn about how and where I met other folks that are just as passionate about dairy as I am. 
7. L Is For Lactose Intolerance This was part of my A to Z journey for June Dairy Month. An explanation of lactose intolerance, and some tips to help cope with it.
6. A Step Closer To Princess Kay Of The Milky Way Mid-May marks the beginning of the process to choose the new Princess Kay of the Milky Way, Minnesota's dairy ambassador. What do the 12 lucky finalists have in store for them?
5. This And That Thursday - 20 A video of Farmer John's birthday gift, Daughter Sara gets nominated for Teacher Of The Year, and it's almost time for bunnies and decorated eggs! 
4. In The Blink Of An Eye Why did we decide to hire farm help after more than 31 years of only family working on our farm? How did we find our new "future farmers" and what do we expect of them?
3. Don't Get Mad...Get Even? Chipotle was attempting to share their concern about questionable farming practices by releasing their online-only television series "Farmed and Dangerous." I felt I wanted and needed to tell my side of the story. 
2. Dooby, Dooby Moo And A Giveaway Too! I was invited to be a guest reader on Playful Pages, a local television show. Surprise! I chose to read a book about farm animals heading off to the County Fair. Watch the video here.
1. I Is For Ice Cream Another edition of my A to Z Journey during June Dairy Month, and it's all about ice cream. There's trivia and a delicious little ice cream recipe that doesn't even require an ice cream freezer.
Thanks for visiting My Barnyard this year. I hope I've helped you understand the crazy life of our dairy farm family, both on and off the farm. 

If you like what you've seen, please tell your friends about my blog 
and my other social media sites.  

"Hey, how come you don't have to wear one of these silly hats?"

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Our Christmas Wish

 Our Christmas Wish For You

Our Christmas wish for you
Is not a simple one
For we wish you hope and joy and peace
Days filled with warmth and sun 


  May you count your blessings, one by one
And when totaled by the lot
May you find all you've been given
To be more than what you sought 

  May God be your strength and light
May your spirit never grow old
May all your clouds have silver linings
And your rainbows pots of gold 

  We wish this all and so much more
May all your dreams come true
May you have a Merry Christmas
And a happy New Year, too … 

Author: unknown 
Merry Christmas from the Bremers 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Thanks Auntie Margaret

Several years ago I asked my aunt Margaret to share her 
recipe for Date Balls.
 I was never very fond of dates, but these Christmas Cookies are soooo good!

Date Balls

4 cups dates, pitted and chopped
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup butter, of course!

Cook all together over medium heat until well blended, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Add 8 cups crispy rice cereal. Cool slightly. Form into balls. I use a small cookie scoop and then roll them into ball shapes with "buttered" hands. Roll in coconut or leave plain. Makes 9 dozen. 

Enjoy with a glass of milk.

During this season of joy, the gift of health and happiness 
is easy to share with families in need through 
the Great American Milk Drive.

Share the goodness of milk with your local 
Feeding America food bank at 
Your donation will be matched gallon-for-gallon 
through December 31st.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Every Day AGvocate

I just got home from the YMCA.
 That's where I go for torture physical therapy (PT)
to recover from my darn knee surgery.

You may be noticing my tired eyes, messy hair, or the exhausted look on my face after therapy, but that's not what a lady in the PT waiting area noticed.

She noticed the cow and BREMER FARMS on my jacket.

 "Are your cows nice? Can you pet them? How do they stay warm in the winter? Isn't it a big job being a dairy farmer?
That's how our lengthy conversation began.

Who knew I would be an AGvocate today?
I did. Just like every other day!
I just never know where and how the opportunity will arise.

AGvocate defined: anyone who advocates for the agriculture industry, anyone who supports the agriculture industry or works to tell the agriculture story is an agvocate. (agriview.com)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Decorating Bug Bit Hard!

The "decorating bug" bit Sara...hard!

Daughter Sara loves the holidays...and celebrating...and decorating, and this Christmas, decorating fever really hit! Sara decorates our front yard for each holiday. Witches, ghosts and pumpkins make an appearance for Halloween. Turkeys and pilgrims adorn our yard each Thanksgiving. Sara shares the love with hearts and cupids for Valentines day. St Patrick's Day, Easter, Independence Day...yep, decorations for all!

This Christmas you will see Santa on a tractor, Santa on a skid steer loader, snowmen, penguins having a snowball fight, elf on the shelf (of course), and dinosaurs (who knew?) all helping us celebrate. And that's only a few of the 51 characters perched in our yard.

And did I mention there's a light show synced to music? 
Yep, Sara doesn't skimp when it comes to decorating!

So if you're in our neighborhood, stop by, tune your radio to 88.9, 
and enjoy the show, and who knows, Santa and his elf 
may just be handing out candy canes!

Thanks to Dairy Star for featuring Sara and her holiday display in their December 13th issue, and a big thank you to them for these great photos!