Monday, October 16, 2017

Dairy Q & A


What is homogenization?


Homogenization is a mechanical process that breaks up fat globules 
to a smaller size.When this process is used with milk, it distributes
 the smaller sized fat globules through out the milk producing a 
uniform consistency.  It's basically mixing the cream into the milk.

Homogenization makes the milk whiter  and more appetizing color,
 provides a more full-bodied flavor and better mouth feel and gives milk 
and other cultured milk products increased shelf stability.

Milk began being homogenized in the early 1930's when Dr.Malcolm Trout, 
a nutrition professor at Michigan State, linked the process of pasteurization
 and homogenization together. He found that homogenized milk needed
 to be pasteurized first to have an appealing taste.

While it's possible to have pasteurized milk that hasn't been homogenized and
 homogenized milk that hasn't been pasteurized, most milk found in 
 United States markets has undergone both processes.
Milk is pasteurized first to kill bacteria,
 then homogenized to give us that consistent taste.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

What would we do without farmers?

Who would raise the crops?

Who would provide the milk for my cereal?

Who would be caring for the animals?

                                                        I'm thankful that we have farmers
                                                               --all kinds of farmers--
                                         that work everyday to provide food, care for animals
                                        and protect our natural resources for all of our families.
                                              Happy National Farmers Day!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

It's standard treatment for pregnant cows to have a two month rest period
 before giving birth.Two weeks before the expected calving date, 
we move the cows or heifers to the field close to our 
house so we can monitor them closely.

                                                       I'm thankful for all safe arrivals
                                        for this week's new addition to the dairy farm family!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Raw Milk Truth

During last month's dairy farm tours that I provided to the Northwest Arkansas home school students and their families, I was asked several times if we sold raw milk (unpasteurized milk) from the farm.
The simple answer was NO but it provided me the opportunity to share the facts about the benefits of pasteurization. 

As a dairy farmer, mother and a nurse, I'm passionate about the importance pasteurization plays in providing safe milk and dairy products. Since the introduction of pasteurization more than a century ago, it has been recognized around the world as an essential tool for ensuring that milk and dairy foods are safe.

Although many states (including Arkansas)  are now allowing the sale of raw milk (unpasteurized milk) it is a violation of federal law to sell raw milk for consumer use across state lines.

Pasteurization has helped provide safe, nutrient rich milk, and cheese for over 100 years and because of pasteurization, less than 1.5 percent of annual food borne illness outbreaks in the United States involve dairy foods.

Here are some proven facts about milk and pasteurization:
--Pasteurization DOES kill harmful bacteria.
--Pasteurization DOES save lives.
--Raw milk DOES NOT kill dangerous pathogens by itself.
--Pasteurizing milk DOES NOT cause lactose intolerance and allergic reaction.
--Pasteurization DOES NOT reduce milk's nutritional value.

Harmful bacteria can seriously affect the health of anyone who drinks raw milk, or eats foods made from raw milk. However, the bacteria in raw milk can be especially dangerous to people with weakened immune systems, older adults, pregnant women, and children.

Thanks to proven science and technology tools like pasteurization, dairy farmers will continue providing safe, high-quality milk for my family and yours!

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

I'm thankful for...

Beagle, our crazy four wheel riding farm dog,

                                                                    a new fall calf,
                                                to hear the  word "cow" from the youngest
                                                        member of our dairy farm family.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Like the varied spots on our spotted Holstein cows, 
every group of dairy farm visitors are unique.

I love to see the expression on the face of the child or adult that 
suddenly understands how we work on the farm to produce
 a great product that their family enjoys.

                                       I'm thankful to  connect with consumers to share how
                                we work everyday to care for our animals, produce  nutritious
                                          milk and give them a feel for life on a family farm.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

There's nothing sweeter than watching a mother with her new baby.
It's a reminder of all the many blessings that we often 
take for granted when life gets too busy.

                                 This baby was delivered without any complications this week
                               just in time to greet a group of children making a visit to the farm.

                              I'm thankful for the blessings of life that we can share with others!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

What's not to love about sharing our dairy story?

It's not always easy to fit in a dairy farm tour but it is 
worth every minute I spend sharing with consumers
 of all ages how we work every day to produce nutritious
 milk by caring for our animals and the land we call home.

                              I'm thankful for the parents and children that brought their desire
                            to learn how we produce milk and  for sharing their beautiful smiles!
                                                   Baby calves always bring out the smiles!

Monday, September 4, 2017

Labor Day Celebration

Our Labor Day celebration started early this morning with 
the arrival of three new calves.Welcoming new life on the dairy farm
 is always  a great way to start the day!

New babies are taken to their individual calf hutch where we can monitor 
them closely, make sure they receive good nutrition and are protected from 
other members of the herd and bad weather.

                                              Caring for these babies is my daily labor of love.
                           It's a priority to make sure these calves get off to a healthy start because
                                  they will grow to become the cows that produce nutritious milk.

                                                              From down on the dairy farm,

                                                              Happy Labor Day!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Even though it was almost dusk when the custom silage chopper
 pulled into the first corn field this week, it was decided to open the
 field and get the process started. 

As I waited for the chopping to begin, it suddenly seemed like fall.
As darkness covered the field, the air became chilly. 
I was wishing for jeans and a long sleeved shirt instead of my shorts.
Even a big pot of chili sounded good.
Can it really be fall in August?

We didn't haul too many loads to the silo  that first evening but 
 I am so thankful for the corn crop that will be used to 
feed our dairy cows through this fall and winter.

Ready or not---I think fall is sneaking up on us!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

I'm thankful for the August rain that has made  this second cutting 
of hay grazer forage possible,

brought a smile to the farmer's face when  finding filled out corn ears
 that will soon be turned into feed for our dairy cows,


                                 provided the opportunity to hear one of Hattie's new words,
                                                                          " rainin' "!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Do you notice anything unusual in this picture?
A mud puddle in August!

As you can see, the cows are crowding together because like
 a bunch of naughty kids,they are looking to lay down in that mud.

                                     I'm thankful for the unusual amount of rainfall we have
                                      received in August that is restoring pastures dried  by
                               summer heat, watering our crops that will be harvested this fall
                                and providing a little fun relief for our much loved dairy cows.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Although our days on the dairy farm are busy and filled with
 a variety of challenges, 

I'm thankful for the smiles that come with these two tractor drivers
 and the opportunity we have to watch the fifth generation
 embrace life on the farm.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

As I turned into the driveway late this afternoon, 
I saw this group of pregnant cows resting in the shade.
It was a perfect picture for the word content.

                                   It was obvious the cows are enjoying the lower temperature
                                            and humidity for the first two days of August.
                                  Although I know these cooler temperatures are just a pause in
                                         our usual summer heat, I'm thankful for the comfort
                                                  provided for the cows and the farmers.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Dairy Farm Magic

As I was watching the hay mowing cutter go across the field yesterday, 
I thought back to late last fall when Hattie and I were watching the 
manure spreader go in a similar pattern spreading  liquid cow manure.

From brown to green...a little dairy farm manure  magic!

 Cow manure is a nutrient used to fertilize fields that are 
part of our dairy farm's nutrient management plan.

Utilizing our  cows' manure is  an important part of our farm's
 sustainability because it adds organic material to the soil, 
increases the water holding capacity of the land and
decreases the amount of commercial fertilizer that is purchased.

                                             A perfect picture of a farmer working his magic!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

There's nothing unusual about experiencing hot and humid
 weather in Northwest Arkansas during  July.

When we start the early morning at 81 degrees, 
I am thankful for the cloudy, overcast sky that offers a little relief 
for the dairy  cows while they are eating from the feed wagons

 the weed pullers in the garden!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Arkansas Cake and Ice Cream

One of the benefits of being a Carrol Electric customer is the free subscription to the cooperative's  monthly   magazine Arkansas Living. Recipes from great Arkansas cooks is one of my favorite magazine features. I love collecting these recipes and will be adding  Blueberry Cream Cheese Pound Cake.  This delicious cake recipe was submitted by Doris Houser of Lockesburg and featured in the March 2017 issue.  Many thanks to Doris for sharing this delicious dessert recipe.

This turned out to be a perfect and quick recipe for an impromptu get together with family and friends.
Of course, you must add that huge dip of vanilla
ice cream  for the perfect topping!

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pound Cake

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 yellow butter cake mix
1 3-ounce package instant vanilla pudding mix
4 eggs,beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups blueberries,fresh or frozen

Preheat oven 325 degrees F. Lightly spray 9-inch tube or Bundt pan with cooking spray and dust with flour.

Combine cream cheese and oil in medium bowl. Beat with mixer until smooth and creamy. Add cake mix,pudding mix, eggs and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until blended. Fold in berries (batter will be thick).Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake 60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Cool cake in pan on wire rack 20 minutes. Remove cake from pan and cool completely on a wire rack

Sprinkle powdered sugar on top or make a glaze using 3/4-cup powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon grape juice (or more for desired consistency).

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

                                        Feeding calves is one of my everyday jobs on the farm.
                                 Even though I've fed more than a few bottles, I still think it's fun!

                                  Each calf receives a two quart bottle of milk twice a day for the
                                  first three days to make sure they receive all of their mother's
                                    colostrum. At three days we teach them to drink from a bucket
                                       and  continue to feed milk and add grain to their daily diet.

                                          We monitor and observe each calf closely for any
                                         problems and make sure they receive good nutrition.

                                        I'm thankful for my job of caring for these new babies
                                              that are the future of our family dairy farm.

                             It's a fact: Calves grow up to become the cows that produce milk,
                                so farmers make it a priority to get them off to a healthy start.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Our cows enjoy a balanced nutritious diet every day. 
It's one of the most important ways we take care of our dairy cows 
everyday and in return, they provide us with nutritious milk.

This was one of the messages I shared during this past week 
with a small group of children making their first visit to a dairy farm.
Touring the feed barn and watching the cows eat is one 
of my favorite stops on the tour.

I consider it a privilege  to be able to share with children and adults 
 how we care for our dairy cattle  everyday
 during  a farm tour.

I'm thankful for the opportunity to provide 
the perfect show and tell for all ages!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Even though our July 4th picnic plans were 
changed due to unusual  weather,

I'm thankful for the rain we have received in the last few days
that will help our crops grow  

and for the special July 4th babies born
down on the Arkansas  dairy farm!

It's dairy style fireworks!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

It was in no one's plan to spend any time visiting family in the 
hospital during June Dairy Month but I was thankful to see that dairy
 was in the hospital with us.  After suffering a stroke, my uncle received this
 thickened dairy product to aid in his impaired swallowing and still
 provide the nutrition he needs for recovery.

No matter where we are, I'm thankful for those spotted cows
down on the dairy farm.


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Father Love

Father's Day gives us opportunity to celebrate the love our fathers
 lavished on us while on earth with us 

and to celebrate the blessings provided by being a father!

"For I know the plans that I have for you,
declares the Lord,
Plans for welfare and not for calamity to give 
you a future and a hope."
                                                                                            --Jeremiah 29:11

                                                       Happy Father's Day!

Friday, June 16, 2017

June Dairy Adventures

June Dairy Month is filled with all kinds of activities but if you want to be
 rewarded with smiles from children, just take Frannie
 the Arkansas Farm Bureau milking cow for a visit.

I spent a morning this week, sharing a dairy adventure with kids 
attending the Mary May Jones Adventure Club in Bentonville.
Of course, the first question is,"Do we get to milk the cow?"

                                                        Other than eating ice cream,
                                    I can't think of a better way to celebrate June Dairy Month
                                  than sharing all about where milk and dairy products come from!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Governor Asa Hutchinson declared June Dairy Month in Arkansas.
It's the perfect kick-off to a month that celebrates the nutritious goodness of milk and a variety of dairy products that consumers across our state and the nation enjoy everyday.
Milk is our Arkansas state drink!

I was honored to take part in this ceremony with 
Arkansas Farm Bureau Dairy Ambassador Julie Griffin,
other dairy  farmers and industry leaders.

                                       I'm thankful for a governor who supports dairy farmers,

                                              showed his love for milk by raising his glass
                                           to celebrate June Dairy Month and World Milk Day!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Farmer Celebrates June Dairy Month with a Birthday

It seems fitting for a dairy farmer to celebrate his birthday during June Dairy Month! It's a tradition in our family for the birthday celebrant to choose the kind of cake or pie for his day. Ryan's favorite is his mother's recipe for  Applesauce Cake. Thank goodness I inherited  my mother-in-law's recipe box and can fulfill his request!

Applesauce Cake

2 cups unsweetened applesauce
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1 cup raisins
1 cup black walnuts
2 Tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Mix sugar,flour, and spices together. Soak raisins in water,squeeze and then add to flour mixture.
Heart applesauce and butter. Add baking soda and applesauce to flour mixture.  Stir in nuts.
Bake  in floured and greased 13 x 9 inch pan at 350 degrees for 45 minutes . Cool completely before adding icing.

6 Tablespoons Butter
3 1/2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
Light cream (about 1/4 cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Cream butter; gradually add about half the sugar, blending well. Beat in 2 tablespoons cream and vanilla. Gradually blend in remaining sugar. Add enough cream to make of spreading consistency.

                              Serve with several scoops of vanilla ice cream for best results!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Raise Your Glass for World Milk Day

We're  kicking off June Dairy Month celebrating World Milk Day (June 1)
 down on the dairy farm 
by raising a glass of our favorite ...MILK!

World Milk Day was established  in 2001 by the Food and 
Agriculture Organization  of the United Nations to recognize
 the importance  of milk as a global food.

Behind every nutritious drop, is a dedicated dairy farm family.

We invite you to celebrate with us today  by raising a glass (or two) and
 if you share your toast on a social media channel using hashtags 
#WorldMilkDay or #RaiseAGlass, 
our Dairy Farmers of America Cooperative will donate $1 
to the Great American Milk Drive, up to $10,000. 

Just think how many more of our friends could enjoy a glass of nutritious milk 
by today's #World Milk Day celebration!

                                                        I just love about you?