<![CDATA[irozfarmstead.com - Blog]]>Fri, 24 May 2024 03:10:56 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Barn is Coming Along]]>Wed, 26 Jul 2023 17:48:22 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/barn-is-coming-along]]><![CDATA[Barn Update!!]]>Tue, 27 Jun 2023 17:31:49 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/barn-update
It has been a busy week for sure.  The rain has been a blessing that keeps on giving.  But we have still managed to keep working on the barn.  We had gravel delivered via a great family friend at Stillwater CAT.  We poured concrete, that was a feat in and of itself.  Now Colter and I can officially say that we are past a point we never thought would come.  So my 15x20 milking parlor pad is poured with plumbing for hot water and commercial drains. Next steps are to finish putting in the wood 6x6 pillars and squaring it off for trusses and then tin.  We went with the design of having concrete pillars sunk and concreted in and attaching the wood to the top to help mitigate wood getting chewed, kicked and rotted out per the animals.  But I think we are on our way to a beautiful barn!
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<![CDATA[Ava]]>Mon, 26 Jun 2023 21:59:11 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/ava
Miss Ava has many names, her registered paint name is Ima Wow Factor, but her barn name that everyone calls her is Ava, or Ava ava, or Pumpkin.  It all depends on who is working with her and how she is acting.  
We picked Ava up in 2022 in July from Nebraska.  We picked her up as a 3 year old that had been worked on the ground, but had not been saddled and rode.  Many ask why would we need Miss Ava.  What many do not know is that after a rough year in school for Ollie we decided to pull him out and homeschool him.  One of his requests was to learn how to ride.  With our fantastic neighbor opening up her barn, contributing her time and offering the use of both her horses Miss Flirt and Miss Sky, Ollie learned how to ride enough to work with Mr. Josh Shengle.  Not only is he learning to ride, but he is learning how to show them and wants to learn to jump.  When we took that into consideration we realized we needed a very tall horse and maybe one that was not so old and well one that could and would pack a little person.  And lucky for us our neighbor found Miss Ava up for sale and for what we could tell she checked all the boxes.  So we took the chance and brought her home for Josh to train and she just keeps growing.
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<![CDATA[What We Have Been Up To...]]>Fri, 16 Jun 2023 19:18:44 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/what-we-have-been-up-toIt has been a minute since I have checked in....first things first we are a live and doing well.  The boys made it home from their trip to Minnesota and the barn is making progress.  We have taken the girls in to get blood draws done to make sure they are healthy and clean to sell milk. 
​Here in the state of Montana those who choose to sell raw milk have to get milk samples tested once every 6 months.  This test is to make sure that the standard plate count, coliform count, and somatic cell count in milk is looked at.  A producer aims for a 3-month average of <5,000 cfu/mL for standard plate count and <10 cfu/mL for coliforms is best.  The other test the girls need come from the vet and it is recommended that you check annual for TB and QFever, but mostly a cow has to be tested for one of the most serious livestock diseases, Brucellosis. It mostly affects cattle but may affect other animals. Brucellosis can be transmitted to humans through the consumption of raw milk. In humans it causes undulant fever, a chronic disease characterized by recurrent fever and general malaise.
Anyways other than that we are just hanging out enjoying the rain and beautiful spring here in Montana!
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<![CDATA[Laughy Taffy aka Taffy "Momma"]]>Sat, 03 Jun 2023 20:23:50 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/laughy-taffy-aka-taffy-momma
Taffy Momma is a half Guernsey half Jersey cross.  She is A2A2 and turning 7 this year.  When covid hit and well Ree wasn`t in milk I made the decision that it was time to look for another cow.  Let`s be honest, I collected cows during covid. But Taffy was a goldmine of a find.  She came from less than perfect circumstances and so she tends to be a little crazy and neurotic.  I am definitely her person, but the longer I have her the more tolerant of others she is becoming.  And if you think I am joking ask the boys about being in a pasture with her after she has calved, or any cow has calved.  (Boys include Colter)
I came upon her, but didn`t exactly have the money for her so I called up my mother and asked if for my birthday she would send me the money for her and I would pay her back.  She agreed and well we brought Taffy home with an extra feed steer.  When my mother concluded that she liked Taffy`s milk and that she in no way wanted to up keep cows, we made a deal that as long as she got milk, butter, yogurt and possibly cheese for her life time, I did not have to pay her back.  So the running joke is that Taffy is Moms cow.  Fun fact is that as a heritage breed and well with those Guernsey genetics she does not process out beta-carotene (a pigment found in plants that give them their color) What this means is that her milk is not that stark white you are used to in the store.  It has a cream color or yellow tint.  This is also why when we make butter from her cream it always has a bit of a radioactive look to it.  Especially in the spring when the grass is abundant. 
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<![CDATA[Reese's Peanut Butter Cup aka "Ree"]]>Fri, 02 Jun 2023 17:49:15 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/reeses-peanut-butter-cup-aka-ree

​This sweet girl goes by Ree Ree or Ree.  She came to us after Colter made a deal with me to get rid of my dairy goats.  I had invested in goats because I could no longer nurse our youngest due to medical issues.  Only one slight problem was that Colter did NOT like goats.  So Colt made me a deal that if we got rid of all the goats I could get a milk cow.  I had done a huge amount of research on raw milk and felt that with the land we were on that we should get a milk cow.  Between the goats and Ree calving we learned our youngest has an aversion to pasteurized products.  We learned this because I put him on store bought whole milk at 20 months.  By the age of 24 months the poor kid was failure to thrive along with other medical issues he had.  So the rush was on to find milk in the community.  This is where I met some of the best people I know and found life long friends.  Anyways, Ree came to us at 18 months old never touched and raised on pasture.  She came from a place that raised Brown Swiss(BS).  Her momma was a small BS and so was bred to a jersey bull to help lessen the stress of calving her first calf.  This breeding made Ree who is half BS and half jersey.  She is actually pretty small for her heritage.  I took the risk on her A2 status and bought her bred.  Her breeding did not take and again with a huge help from another farm we got her live covered to calf.   I would follow up her training with an A2 test which came back that she is in fact an A2A2 heavy producer.  She is the sweetest cow on the farm.  She stands with grain to be milked and I have taught many littles to milk off of her.  She will begrudgingly feed bums and is way chill.  So much so Colter has nicknamed her the grasspuppy.  And many friends have come to meet her and been licked and loved on by her.   She is now 5 years old and going strong raising her much loved 3rd calf and we retained last years heifer off of her to calf next year. 

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<![CDATA[COMING SOON!!!]]>Fri, 26 May 2023 05:15:12 GMThttp://irozfarmstead.com/blog/coming-soon