"Overwhelmed? Add more animals!"
I'm pretty sure this has been our farm motto for the past several years.
And so it happened that this weekend Pete drove to a friend's far to pick up two new additions to the homestead. (The two biggest members of the team yet, as it turns out.)
Introducing Pollyanna and her calf Tiny. (Or Percy. The jury is still out on his name. He arrived with the name "Peter" which, while funny, won't fly over here and will just add to our general state of confusion. A dog named "Grandpa" and a steer named "Pete"? Well, maybe…)
And yes. I know. We swore off having a milk cow years ago after a neighbor generously shared her milk cow with us for a season. Because it's too much milk! And a pretty colossal commitment. (And since raw milk is contraband here in Wisconsin we can't even legally sell any surplus.)
So, yes, technically Pollyanna is a milk cow. (A Jersey.) But we didn't buy her for milk. We bought her because we have more pasture than our flock can keep up on, some of it not ideal for sheep or goats but just perfect for cows.
And as her calf is still nursing, milking her is optional. (Or it will be within a couple of weeks.)
We added cows to our homestead because we wanted to raise our own beef. And while these two are not a meat breed, they were a simple, affordable way for us to get started.
Plus: bonus milk.
And so our homestead grew this week in an unexpected direction.
For now anyway most of us are a bit taken in by the newness and excitement of this new addition. (Not all of us. But most.) And we're rearranging fences and water troughs making plans for the best way to keep these two happy, healthy, and growing strong.
And with that, I'm off to the barn. Because – for now anyway – I've got a cow to milk.