Saturday, November 24, 2012

"We interrupt this family gathering..."

My family gathered together at my parents' home for our traditional Thanksgiving meal on Friday evening. Mom had cooked just about everything one could hope for: turkey, ham, dressing, gravy, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green beans, rolls, and deviled eggs (I ate eight). After feasting on the great meal that had been set before us, we all excused ourselves from the dining room and eventually congregated in the living room to watch a subpar, non-SEC college football game.

Dad stepped out a few minutes later to check on a heifer we had suspected was in labor earlier in the day. Sure enough, she was in labor and was going to need our help with the process. So Dad, my brother-in-law, and I all scarfed down some dessert, put on our heavy coveralls, and headed up the road to the dairy.

Once we arrived, we secured the two-year-old heifer into our catch-pen's chute and began to help her deliver. The calf was turned correctly and wasn't unusually big, it was just as if the heifer had decided the calf should do all of the work and get out by itself.  Regardless, we had him safely out within a matter of a few minutes. We left the new cow and her bull calf alone to spend the evening together as we went back to rejoin the rest of the family and resume falling asleep in the living room.

Some might see the interuption of a family gathering to pull a calf, chase mischievous heifers back into their pasture, or address any other possible "emergency" farm chore as an unwelcome aggravation.  For this dairy farm family, though, it's just part of life.

A very blessed life.

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