Friday, May 31, 2013

Calm Cows Prepare for June Dairy Month

Just before dark I stepped outside to see if the sky was billowing up with the dark storm clouds that are predicted to appear in the next few hours.  The air is heavy and after several windy days this week, it seems strange that  there is hardly a leaf stirring.

 The pregnant cows in the pasture next to the house are resting and don't seem bothered by the impending storm. It seems like they may know that it's the calm before the storm and  time to take this opportunity to rest.

After two months of rest, these cows are ready to give birth and a stormy night might be the perfect opportunity!
Wouldn't a new dairy calf be the perfect way for these calm cows  to kick-off  June Dairy Month?

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Whether it's a birthday on the dairy  farm
or a celebration on the Bentonville Square (my hometown),
I'm thankful to celebrate my birthday this Thursday  with my Mother for the 58th time!!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Holiday Highlights on the Dairy Farm

This is how we're spending Memorial Day on the dairy farm.....

feeding the calves,
milking and feeding the cows,
feeding young calves around the farm,
continue harvesting the  spring crop of rye grass  that will feed our cows,

enjoying lunch with my family before they return to work in the field,

                                enjoying a spin to work off some of that ice cream I plan on eating!
                                                                 Happy Memorial Day!   

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Memorable Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial beginning of summer but for me, it's a time to pause and remember those who have given their all so that we might enjoy the freedoms that are often taken for granted in the daily routine of life.
In church this weekend, we'll be singing My Country,Tis of Thee. It's such a simple song that I've sung since childhood but the words still ring true:
My country, 'tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing:
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the Pilgrims'Pride,
From every mountainside
Let freedom ring.
With a grateful heart, I say thank-you.
                                                                 God Bless America !

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Bessie's Home Makeover

It's no wonder that Bessie is smiling--- her home at Dairy Makes Sense just got a new makeover!
Her new place has all kinds of interesting rooms filled with nutrition facts,health and fitness information, introductions to some of the Midwest dairy farmers, and all kinds of nutritious,delicious dairy recipes.

I'm celebrating Bessie's Home Makeover with   Lemon Blueberry Chicken Salad (found at Dairy Makes Sense). Looks like a perfect fit for a holiday weekend or busy  summertime schedule!

Lemon Blueberry Chicken Salad

1 1/4 cups(10 ounces) low-fat lemon flavored yogurt
2 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
2 cups cubed cooked chicken breasts
3/4 cup sliced celery (about 3 stalks)
1/2 cup green onions (about 6), thinly sliced
1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced (about 1/2 medium pepper)
Salt and pepper to taste


In a medium bowl, combine yogurt and mayonnaise. Mix in blueberries (saving a few for garnish) chicken,celery, green onions and bell pepper. Mix gently. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate to let flavors blend for at least 30 minutes.

Serve over endive or other salad greens with reserved blueberries and lemon slices, if desired.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for the many men and women who have served our country to protect our freedoms. While Ryan's Dad was serving in Japan during World War II, Ryan's mother was home taking care of the farm.
I'm thankful for the sacrifices each of them made during their lifetime to protect and preserve our country and family farm heritage. 


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Future of Food 2013

Just a few weeks ago, I spent a couple of mornings giving University of Arkansas students a tour of our dairy farm. I love sharing how we work every day (that's 24/7,holidays and weekends) to produce a safe and healthy product. Part of the tour includes explaining and showing how we work to protect the environment and utilize all our resources. It's science and technology that drive efficiency today and the future of our food production system.


It's a fact that one of the greatest challenges of the next generation will be providing nutritious,affordable food to a global population expected to grow to 9 billion by 2050--while using fewer resources. Dairy foods are key to healthy people, healthy communities and a healthy planet.

Discussion of the Future of Food is vital to all of us--consumers and farmers. One of these discussions is being hosted by the National Dairy Council and Washington Post Live in Washington,D.C. tomorrow (May 22) beginning at 7:30 CST. You can join in the conversation using the twitter hashtag #ThinkFood or watch Future of Food online.


Sunday, May 19, 2013

May Days on the Dairy

On top of the daily chores of milking and caring for our dairy cattle, May is busy with harvesting spring crops, preparing to mow hay and plant silage crops. Busy May days often feel like what I call  tail chasing days on the dairy farm--which job should we tackle first because everything needs to be done at the same time!
As I walk from the house to the calf hutches, I'm calmed and refreshed as I enjoy the beauty of May.
Old fashioned flowers like these iris are a beauty to behold in the month of May!
There's nothing like May Days on the Dairy!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Tuesday morning found me celebrating with students   from Arkansas,Missouri and Oklahoma for the difference they have made in their schools by participating in Fuel Up to Play 60. The day was filled with fun activities to reward their successful participation  to motivate other students to
 "Eat healthy,get active and make a difference.".
The morning started with a 'get moving' activity,
a test of nutrition knowledge with lunch tray relay,
 motivational talks  by NFL referee Walt Coleman and retired NFL player Steve Conley,
                                                and lots of smiles and pictures to take home.

                                                         As a dairy farmer,mom and nurse,
     I'm thankful for the difference that Fuel Up To Play 60 is making in the health of our children.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Fuel Up To Play 60 Fast Facts

Have you heard of Fuel Up to Play 60?  As a dairy farmer, I'm pretty pumped up about this in-school  program that encourages kids to choose nutrient-rich foods first and get out and play at least 60 minutes every day. Fuel Up to Play 60 is a direct response to dairy farmers' concerns that many U.S. children are overweight and undernourished.

Midwest Dairy Council states these top 10 fast facts:

Fuel Up To Play 60 Is...
  1. An in-school program offered to all U.S. schools at no cost
  2. Part of wellness efforts in more than 72,000 schools across the U.S.,including more than 10,000 in the Midwest
  3. Founded by the National Dairy council and the NFL, in cooperation with the USDA.
  4. Designed to empower students to choose nutrient-rich foods, such as low-fat dairy foods, fruits,vegetables and whole grains, and get out and play at least 60 minutes everyday
  5. Led by students, and guided by adult school leaders
  6. Motivated by research that says well-nourished and physically active students have stronger academic achievement
  7. Customaizable through downloadable resources,tools and in-school promotional materials, plus fun incentives and rewards
  8. Endorsed by Action for Healthy Kids,American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Dietetic Association,National Hispanic Medical Association,National Medical Association,School Nutrition Association,U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,and U.S. Department of Education
  9. Aligned with First Lady Michelle Obama's childhood obesity platform, "Let's Move"
  10. Complementary to other school wellness initiatives,including the USDA's Healthier U.S. School Challenge
You can find more information about the program and how your school  can become involved at Fuel Up to Play 60.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

Our Mother's Day tradition includes  a family dinner topped with a special dessert. Crusty Cream Cheese Pound Cake, topped with strawberries and vanilla ice cream is a perfect choice!

Crusty Cream Cheese Pound Cake

1 cup butter,softened
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
1 8oz cream cheese,softened
3 cups sifted flour
6 eggs
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Cream butter and shortening; gradually add sugar,beating well at medium speed. Add cream cheese,beating well until light and fluffy. Alternately add flour and eggs, beginnng and ending with flour. Stir in vanilla.

Pour batter into greased and floured 10 inch tube pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until pick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack.

                                                       From our dairy farm family to you--

                                                              HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Last Friday we had our first and only  May snow in Northwest Arkansas!
I'm thankful that my Lily of the Valley (May's flower)
 wasn't one bit shocked by the sudden return to winter!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

May's Farm Fun

For the last seven or eight years, the Benton County Farm Bureau Women's Committee has sponsored an elementary school  program in May  titled "Farm Expo". With the help of  volunteers from Arkansas Farm Bureau and the Arkansas Beef Council, we're able to provide hands-on fun with  information about Arkansas agriculture and how farmers provide safe food while protecting the environment.
Friday morning we shared Farm Expo with Bonnie Grimes Elementary third graders.
Students learned about...
food safety,
                                                                                and beef.

                                         I'm sure the students had as much fun as the volunteers!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

It was a happy May Day when I found the first lilac bloom and iris while enjoying the sunshine this morning.
                                   I'm thankful for the April showers that bring May flowers!