Friday, January 7, 2011
I say the same thing every year, I hope this year is a better year than the one before. Well................. this year started out the same as always ! First I got the stomach flu going around our family, the very same day I find out my Ford Explorer's transmission went !! Wonderful ! Another expense that I have to worry about ! Plus we only have my Explorer and my husband's old ( and I mean old ! ) dump truck . So I will be without a car for 2 to 3 weeks. That will drive me nuts !! Maybe they will get it done quicker than they think ?? ( not likely !! ) Today we needed groceries and we needed to get coal. So we went to the grocery store in the old dump truck. My husband called us The Clampetts going to town. LO L!!!!!!!!! Could just imagine what we looked like ! The truck is all rusted up and has holes in the sides of the bed . Husband did some patching here and there so it would pass inspection. We piled all the bags in the front seat with us. Then went and got our coal. The price of the coal has gone up since we got it about a month ago. Now it is up to $204 a ton. Guess it will keep us warm for another month !( a pic of the Clampett truck, in it's better days, plus my husband's pride and joy he shot the other year )
Sunday, January 2, 2011
My husband and I have been married 36 years and we have been Dairy Farmers for those 36 years. My husband took over the farm from his parents in 1972 , 2 years before we got married. But with the low milk prices we have been hit hard with bills that have backed up. Milk prices got up to $19.00 but that still is not what the Dairy Farmer should be getting for their milk. The Farmer does all the work and gets screwed in getting a decent milk price .The months you get a half way decent price for your milk is not enough to get caught up on the backed up bills.We have been hit very hard because we are a very small family Dairy Farm . We only milk 28 cows. I guess it is amazing we have gone on as long as we have.We own our Dairy Farm, we have no mortgage payment.So in that way we are luckier than some other Farmers.When the milk price was down to $9.00 some of those Farmers could not pay their mortgage payment.We have talked this past year about selling the cows. We just don't think we can keep getting deeper and deeper in debt.We realize it has come to the point where money wise , we can't go on the way we have been . As I fed hay last night I thought to myself....in a couple of months I will no longer be doing this. For 36 years we have gone to the barn morning and night , milking the cows, feeding silage, chop and hay, feeding the calves, tending to sick animals, washing the milkers every morning. Sometimes we would be at the barn til 10 or 11 p.m. if there were problems. That was life as a Dairy Farmer. In a couple of months that will all change.There will be no reason to go to the barn every morning and night, no cows and calves to feed and tend to, no more milkers to wash. And as much as it was sometimes hard to be so tied down ..... I think it is going to be as hard ( or harder ) to cope with the loss of not being a Dairy Farmer any more ! A life of a Dairy Farmer is tough and it is very stressful. But there were also many joys. And as hard as it was sometimes ...I know my husband and I are going to miss very, very much going to the barn and the work that goes into being a Dairy Farmer.Being a Dairy Farmer wasn't a job, it was a way of life. Many people who follow me on Twitter know how all our grandchildren love coming here to the Farm and going to the barn. Like I said before , our 15 month old grandson is too little to understand why we are no longer going to the barn and seeing Pap and the cows. JPlovesCotton wrote a piece on her blog (http://jplovescotton.wordpress.com ) that was wonderful and touched my heart . She wrote.... " The image of a grandson and grandad no longer having that reason to put on their boots and head to the barn may permanently reside on my eyelids." That is what I may miss the most , the loss of such a simple thing .