Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

We didn't have any snow for Christmas but we had plenty of rain.
It was a record measurement for rain across Benton County that  
 flooded  property and damaged roads.
The final rainfall  count down on the dairy  farm was 11 inches within three days.

I'm thankful that we did not lose any of our cows and calves
during this stressful weather event

                                                 that Santa had perfect timing for delivering
                                                   my new rain suit and waterproof boots!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Leftover Relief: Hash Brown Quiche

Although I enjoy the leftovers from Christmas dinner, I'm ready for a change in the menu or at least a variation.  Hash Brown Quiche is a tasty way to enjoy and utilize  the surplus of Christmas ham and is versatile enough to be used for a breakfast or supper main dish.

This recipe was a  Country Woman magazine prize winner submitted by Jan Peters of Chandler,Minnesota, many years ago. It's a family  favorite in my recipe collection and definitely a leftover relief!

Hash Brown Quiche


3 cups frozen loose-pack
   shredded hash browns,thawed
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup diced fully cooked ham
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded
   cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded jalapeno cheese
1/4 cup diced green pepper
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper


Press hash browns between paper towel to remove excess moisture.
Press into the bottom and up the sides of an ungreased  9-in. pie plate.
Drizzle with butter. Bake at 425 degrees for 25 minutes.

Combine the ham,cheeses and green pepper; spoon over crust.
In a small bowl, beat eggs,milk,salt and pepper. Pour over all.
Reduce heat to 350 degrees' bake for 25-30 minutes or until a knife
inserted near the center comes out clean. Allow to stand for 10 minutes before cutting.
Yield: 6 servings

Time Saving Tip: Make the hash brown crust and chop the ham,
                           cheese and peppers the night before.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Shine On

Just as I headed out the door to feed calves in the December monsoon weather,
 I received the phone call that was cancelling our church service this morning at 
Vaughn  Presbyterian Church due to flooding roads and hazardous conditions in our county. 

I was all geared to continue celebrating the Christmas season in music 
but since that isn't happening, I thought it might be fun to include the
 words of  Star of Bethlehem and give you one verse and chorus in piano. 
Regardless of the weather, Jesus love shines on.

Star of Bethlehem
O beautiful Star of Bethlehem, shining afar through shadows dim,
Giving a light for those who long have gone,
And guiding the wise men on their way,
unto the place where Jesus lay,
Beautiful Star of Bethlehem shine on.

O beautiful Star, the hope of light,
guiding the pilgrim through the night,
Over the mountain 'til the break of dawn,
And into the light of perfect day
it will give out a lovely ray,
Beautiful Star of Bethlehem shine on.

O beautiful Star, the hope of rest
for the redeemed, the good and blest,
Yonder in glory when the crown is won,
For Jesus is now that Star divine, 
brighter and brighter He will shine;
Beautiful Star of Bethlehem shine on.

O beautiful Star of Bethlehem,
Shine upon us until the glory dawns,
O give us Thy light to light the way
 into the land of perfect day;
Beautiful Star of Bethlehem, shine on. 
         --Adger M. Pace

Friday, December 25, 2015

Happy Christmas Birthday

New babies are always special on the dairy farm
 but having a Christmas baby  is a great gift for a dairy farmer.

Having two is even better!

                                                                    Merry Christmas
                                                      down on the Arkansas dairy farm!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Getting ready for Christmas down on the dairy farm includes
 making sure we have plenty of feed for our calves and cows.

I'm thankful for the feed truck driver that works long hours
 before holidays to make sure feed is available for our animals

                                                           for the unexpected delivery
                                                                          of a
                                                             herd of Christmas cheer!                                                                

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Cows just love to mother a new calf and often try to take
 over another cow's mothering job  before delivering a calf of their own.
Some mamas allow this behavior and others will work to stop this invasion  of their space.

I'm thankful for the natural  God-given mothering instinct 
that protects and  insures a healthy  start in life.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Dairy Delight

Sweet memories are made in the kitchen and shared through generations especially during the Christmas holiday.  One of our family favorites is   Raspberry Delight also known as  "Purple Puddin". Ryan's mother made such sweet memories for us,  spoiled us rotten with great holiday meals and established a Christmas family tradition  that always brings delight down on the dairy farm.

Raspberry Delight

1 can sweetened condensed milk
Juice of 2 lemons
1/2 pint whipping cream,whipped
4 Tablespoons Seedless Black Raspberry Jam
1 box vanilla wafers
1 cup nuts (optional)


Mix together sweetened condensed milk and the juice of 2 lemons; set aside. In a separate bowl, whip cream and gently fold in raspberry jam. Stir mixtures together.
Place a layer of vanilla wafers in the bottom of a 9 x 9 inch dish. Cover wafers with pudding mixture,sprinkle with nuts if desired. Repeat layers ending with wafers on top. Chill.

 You can find more #DairyChristmas at these sites:

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

This new baby was all snuggled in the  bed of straw at the back of the 
calf hutch when it was time for her afternoon  bottle of warm milk.
It took a little persuasion to move her towards the bottle
 but  in a short time she drank every drop.

I'm thankful for a healthy calf that grows up to become the cow
 that produce milk for my family and yours.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Carving the Thanksgiving turkey is serious business but when I pulled
 out the ancient electric knife, the challenge began for Casey.
I'm thankful for these memories that are made with my family  in the kitchen 

the holidays that bring us together around the table

                                           after a day working together down on the dairy farm.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Busy Day Supper

All of our days are busy down on the dairy farm, but there's all those  additional to do lists in December. The lists I'm referring to are  the shopping, the baking, the decorating and all the extra  activities like practice for the church Christmas cantata or the school play. Midwest Dairy's  Cheeseburger Macaroni Casserole fits into a busy schedule perfectly!

Cheeseburger Macaroni Casserole

Non-stick cooking spray
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
whole-wheat elbow macaroni
1 medium tomato,chopped
1-8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt,optional
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup Cheddar cheese


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray an 8 x 8 baking pan with cooking spray; set aside.
In large skillet over medium heat,cook ground beef and onion until
beef is brown and onion is soft; drain. Cook macaroni according to package directions,drain.
Spoon macaroni into prepared pan. Spread beef mixture and chopped tomato over macaroni.
 Pour tomato sauce over beef. Sprinkle with seasoned salt,pepper and shredded cheese.

Yield: 4 servings

To spice it up, use your favorite pizza or Italian style tomato sauce instead of tomato sauce
 and seasoned salt.
For a later meal, double the recipe and place the second casserole in the freezer for later use.

                                        Happy December!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

                                              No matter where you spend Thanksgiving,
                                                       I hope eating will be a part of it!          

We'll be working all day to make sure our dairy  calves and cows 
have plenty to eat just as we do everyday of the year.

I'm thankful for the season of Thanksgiving 
and wish you and your family a very
 Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23, 2015

A Dairy Passion Pledge

When we were planning our wedding thirty one years ago, I didn't think it was too
 unusual for the dairy farmer to want to toast our special day with a glass of milk.
After all, producing milk is a dairy farmer's passion.

Turns out, that milk toast was just the beginning
 of my  lifetime pledge for dairy passion.

November 24,1984

                                       We feel blessed to be able to share our love for life down
                                               on the dairy farm with consumers of all ages.

How could I not love this smiling dairy farmer?
I took the dairy passion pledge.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Even though the calf was on the wrong side of the fence,
 these mama cows never left this new baby alone.

                                                   It's that motherly instinct that often draws
                                                        another cow to claim a new baby.
                                               I'm thankful for the opportunity to experience
                                                      life and love down  on the dairy farm.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Veteran's Day reminds us of the sacrifices being made
 today and in the past to provide the freedoms we enjoy on a daily basis.

I love this 1944 picture of Ryan's dad.
Bill and Bonnah Lyn were married in  Tyler,Texas 
before he was sent to Japan during World War II.
We can only imagine what he experienced as an ambulance driver and medic.
because he  never talked about the war when he returned  home.
I do know that we can never say thank-you enough to all those
 who served in past wars and those who are serving today.

I'm thankful for the  recognition given to all veterans on Veteran's Day
to live in the United States.

                                                                God Bless America!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Harvest Marathon

Harvest  sometimes feels like a very long marathon...
we wait to plant,
we wait for the crop to grow,
we wait for harvest.

Like all silage crops,this  sorghum  silage crop is being cut
 and hauled to the silo where it will ferment before being fed to the dairy  cows.
You might think of this as cow candy!

I often wonder if our cows know how hard we work to make sure
 they have a good supply of nutritious feed to enjoy through the winter.

It's a marathon of ups and downs,
starts and stops,
once you've experienced the harvest of any crop,
you know why it is celebrated!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Foggy mornings bring surprises!

                                                      I'm thankful for the weather changes
                                            that paint pictures of peace down on the dairy farm.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Licking Fear Down on the Dairy Farm

We don't usually think of a dairy farm visit as a life changing experience but that
 was what we witnessed on a recent farm tour with middle school students.

 This young man in the wheelchair had a fear of animals.
When he cried at the sight of our friendly farm dogs, 
I was concerned that this trip to the dairy farm  might not be a good experience.

His teachers were kind but firm and continued to comfort him as they explained to him 
that the animals would not hurt him. The other students would hold his hands
 and talk to him as we traveled around the farm.

The miracle really unfolded by the time we reached the baby calves. 
He continued to cry at the sight of the calves, but as his teacher talked to him and pushed
 him closer to one of the baby Holsteins and 
other students were showing him how the baby calf would lick their hands, this frightened boy,
 reached out for his own experience.
One lick from a baby calf brought the biggest smile.

 The expression of sheer joy on his face was priceless.

Licking  fear of an animal  was a milestone for this special student.
Miracles do happen when we least expect it.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Fall Chowder

We're into real leaf falling, leaf piling,frost on the pumpkin  fall that includes crisp mornings and chilly evenings. It's not quite cold enough for a fire in the fireplace but perfect for a warm soup at supper. 

Thanks to Iowa Dairymom Jonna Schutte for sharing this recipe with Midwest Dairy and The Dairy Good CookBook!

Chunky Baked Potato Chowder
4 slices bacon
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped carrot
1/2 cup chopped celery
6 cups milk
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground
  black pepper
11/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
3 medium unpeeled russet potatoes,
    baked,cooled and cut into bite-size 
Hot pepper sauce
2 green onions,sliced

Cook the bacon until crisp in a large skillet. Remove the bacon from the skillet,reserving the dripping. Crumble the bacon and set aside.

Add the onion,carrot,and celery to the bacon drippings in the skillet and cook over medium heat until tender;set aside.

Whisk together the milk,flour,paprika,salt,and pepper in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir for 1 minute or until slightly thickened. Reduce the heat and slowly add the cheese, stirring constantly until melted.

Add the cooked onion mixture and potatoes to the soup in the saucepan. Stir well. Heat until all the vegetables are warm. Season to taste with hot pepper sauce. Serve topped with a sprinkling of bacon crumbles and green onion.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Bentonville's second high school, located in Centerton, is scheduled to open August 2016. 
I was privileged to take a tour of this magnificent work in progress
 last week with other community members. 

Here's a few facts about the Home of the Wolverines:
 430,000 square feet
121 classrooms
Collaborative learning environment
900 seat performing arts center
State of the art culinary arts laboratory
2000+seat competition gymnasium
Media center with Commons area
14 computer labs
Indoor athletic practice facility
Baseball field,softball field,football field,soccer field,eight lane track

                                          I'm thankful to live in a community that values education
                                               invests in facilities to meet the needs of our students.
                                          Go Wolverines!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Dairy Farmers Fuel Up

Last week we provided a dairy farm tour for students from Helen Tyson Middle School.
These weren't just any students--these were Fuel Up to Play 60 students!

Sharing our farm with Fuel Up to Play 60 students made the day  even more
 special because as dairy farmers we are very proud  to be founding partners
 of this in-school health and wellness program that encourages
 physical activity and good nutrition among youth.

Through the Fuel Up to Play 60 program,  we're helping students
 create and implement activities that reward them for making healthy 
choices and create positive  change in their school.

There's nothing more inspiring to a dairy farmer than to 
share his passion with a young person that wants to know

 how milk gets into his glass,

what cows love to eat,

how calves are raised,


                                                   how Domino's  pizza shows up at the farm!


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Just a few days ago, I was invited to participate in the Midwest Dairy Health and Wellness
 Advisory Roundtable on Sustainable Nutrition at the Arkansas Food Bank in Little Rock.
 The topic of sustainable nutrition involved presentations about what the dairy industry is 
doing in regards to sustainability and the role that food waste plays in our everyday activities.

I keep thinking about these facts...

Nearly 1 in 5  children in the U.S. face hunger.

In Arkansas, 1 in 4 children face hunger.

   About 40% of the U.S. food supply is never eaten and is thrown
 away at home,in grocery stores and restaurants.

I'm thankful for the health professionals that are working in  a variety of settings 
in our local communities to fight hunger and food waste


                             the dairy farm families across America that work 365 days a year to
                                           provide nutritious dairy products that consumers want,
                              in a way that makes the industry,people and the earth economically,
                              environmentally and socially better--now and for future generations.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

Everything was perfect at the Benton County Cleanup...
perfect October weather and happy volunteers.

We filled one 250 gallon container of used motor oil
 and started on the second.

I'm thankful for the Benton County employees who organized 
the clean-up event, the many volunteers that spent Saturday 
morning helping to keep our county clean and
 for the Benton County residents who utilize this service.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Everyday Dairy Farm Sustainability

The feed barn is one of my favorite places to be when
 the cows come to eat after being milked.
They really seemed to be enjoying every bite  this morning
 and weren't a bit interested in what I was doing!

At the request of our dairy nutritionist,I was actually on a mission 
to collect a sample of the feed they were enjoying. 
Sampling  the feed mix is done when we have added a
 new or different ingredient to make sure the total mixed ration is balanced.

Making sure the cows have a nutritious and balanced diet 
keeps them healthy and leads to high-quality milk.
Feed efficiency is extremely important to the sustainability of our farm.

Sustainability is not just a word, it's how our dairy farm family 
has lived for generations, working to improve and
 make life better for the next generation.  

Since 1944 when my mother-in-law was milking cows on our farm, 
dairy farmers across America are producing more milk
 using 90% less cropland, 
producing 76% less manure,
 using 65% less water, 
and producing 63% less carbon emissions.

All that has happened through innovation and efficiency improvements that
 have been provided through research,sound science and technology.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

No matter what size farm you may visit, according to the USDA, 
97 percent of U.S. dairy farms
 are family owned and operated, often by multiple generations of the family.

Our son Cody is the 4th generation to live and work on our family dairy  farm. 
It's hard to believe that today  he's the one driving the tractor and working
 on the farm instead of sitting on the lap of his grandfather

or being pulled in the wagon.

                                           I'm thankful for the news we received that we will be
                                            welcoming another generation to the farm in April!
                                                    Congratulations to Cody and Margaret!
                                                (WOW--I'm going to be a Dairy Grandma!)

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

On Call Dairy Farmer

What's not to love about a new fall  baby?

                                                             Like most of our calves,
                                          this baby was born in the pasture next to the house.
                                          During calving season we keep a close eye on the
                                                      cows to ensure a healthy delivery.

                                                    If a mom-to-be does need assistance, 
                                         we walk them to the maternity barn for assistance.
                                           It's the on call dairy farmer  that makes the difference
                                                   in the  outcome of  difficult deliveries.



Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Dairymom's Thankful Thursday

The fog thickened as we were feeding calves this morning.
 As I looked at the cows resting in the pasture, it was beautiful in an odd way.
For me it was  a  moment of peace in a crazy week.

                                            I'm thankful for the peaceful God-given moments
                                                                down on the dairy farm.