Monday, September 4, 2017

Not the Labor Day I'd hoped for

This will be Raisa's 4th calf born since we got her.  She's around 10 years old so she's probably had 7 or 8 calves in all.  While calving may not be new to her, it still feels new to me.  With each baby born here I revert to a newby farmer.  I doubt myself.  I wonder if she's really pregnant or if I got the breeding date wrong.  I imagine the mother is farther along than she is in her gestation and am sure a baby is going to pop out any minute.  Nine months and 3 days ago I saw Franklin breed Raisa so I was sure she was going to calve this past Friday.  Yes, I understand 3 days late is nothing.  Her past 2 bull calves were born right on their due date so it just feels wrong to have to wait.  Some days she looks very pregnant and then other days not at all.  I take lots of pictures of her these days, from all angles, and then compare them to the day before to see if I can see changes. I do this with goats too.

 Her udder may look big to you but this is really not all that big for her so I keep wondering why she hasn't filled up more if she's 3 days late.  She'll really get huge the day she calves.
 Yes, I take lots of vulva pictures too.  I can't help myself.  How will I know if it's more swollen a day later if I don't have a photo to compare it to?  I know I have many friends who completely understand this.
And so I wait, and wait.  I'll be sure to post many pictures once baby arrives.  I really, really, really want a red girl, not a black boy.  She hasn't had a girl for me yet.  If she has a girl we'll keep her.

We get a lot of fog here, living in a valley on the river, so it can be pretty wet in the mornings when I go out to feed and milk.  On foggy mornings there are almost always sparkling spiderwebs to photograph.
Every morning the animals hover at the gate waiting for me to fill feed bowls.  The lambs holler but Pessa is the bossiest of them all.  She barks at anyone who comes near her.  She MUST be the first to be fed.  The only one she'll share food with is Dagwood, and she's not always sure she wants to share with him.

James took a kayak out while the river was still lightly blanketed in fog.  He took a few (89) pictures too.
More spiderwebs.
Happy Labor Day.


  1. Great post. We've got one coming as well . . . Millie should be dropping one soon . . . I'm not as an attentive a farmer as you are. Trust me, she will get it done. Hoping you get a red one. Ours turns out to be a blondie . . . kind of the color of a Chicken McNugget, something I would not have thought of but our more fast food savy niece and nephew immediately called her Nugget . . .which is her name . . . which means she will stay in the herd . . . so we have gone from three mamas to four . . . will be interesting to see what she gives us . . . likely black!! But maybe, just maybe . . . Lucas says hello and he wants to come see Raisa when she has her baby.

  2. I hope you get your red girl!!

  3. Best hopes for a girl. You should get one if the odds go right. Beautiful pictures of spider webs. Paint one!