Today, Leeland, myself and my Mom went on a fun tour of a local creamery. We had been talking about doing it for a while and it was nice to finally go-- and Leeland is the perfect age for it. He says that he loved the "cow farm" and loved the hay ride... And the ice cream. For the educational farm tour, each person pays $6 and that includes the hay ride and ice cream at the end. (And in case your curious, Hayden stayed back with Daniel. Leeland and I could use some one on one, and I wasn't sure that chasing Hayden around a farm would be what I'd call fun. The boy doesn't sit still long.)
All of the cows in this pasture were pregnant-- they called it the maternity ward. They will give birth to their baby calves unassisted in this pasture. The babies are then taken into the barn to keep them safe from Coyotes.
The boy loves a tractor!
This is Leeland looking at a pasture of "teenager" cows-- they're all about 1-2 years old.
The baby wanted her bottle.
The calves receive their Mother's milk in a bottle for the first week or so of their life, and then they are placed on "calf formula." As a hard core breast feeding Momma, it was hard to hear that the babies are taken away from their Mommas, but that's also how we are able to get the milk we drink (Catch 22).... Leeland is such a smart little boy, as soon as we walked up he said, "Baby cow need his Momma!"
Leeland milking "sally" the fake cow.
At the end of the tour, we got our delicious ice cream-- everyone got cake batter flavor today. And all of the children got coloring books which include a story and information about how milk makes it to the shelves of the grocery store from the farm.
We LOVE Homeland Creamery! They make some REALLY, REALLY delicious products... milk (whole, low fat, skim, half and half, chocolate), some really yummy ice cream, and we are looking forward to soon trying some of their butter. They are an all natural dairy farm-- their milk and other products are free of artificial growth hormones and antibiotics. They are not certified organic and are unable to put that on the label, but in all other ways they are organic. They even grow much of the cows food on their
farm free of pesticides. (In order to be certified organic, they would have to stop growing the food and shut down the land for 7 years and be tested during that time.... the cows they have rely on that land so they are unable to shut down the process for 7 years.... Works out well for us though, because we are essentially getting an organic product at the non-organic price.)