Category Archives: Journal

A new addition


Lucky was a dramatic first time mom in every sense of the word.

Her late stage pregnancy was an endless worry of her acting as though she was suffering a whole lot more than she was.  She would feign weakness, refuse to eat, squat while walking, stand exaggeratedly bow-legged, roll around on the ground like she was having seizures, etc…

Last evening, it was finally revealed to her the cause of all her hardships and she is one happy mama Jersey.

We welcome ‘ SpiritGrove’s  Magnolia Blossom ‘, out of T Cupp’s Magnolia ( Lucky ) and T Cupp’s Prince Albert ( Knucklehead).  At weaning in Spring, ‘ Maggie’ will be returning to her roots and her grandmother , T Cupp’s Princess, as she was claimed by Maple Lawn Farm of Virginia before her birth, if a heifer.

Love this anxiously awaited little girl, even if she is not ‘ mine’.




Mad Mama Cow


In the interest of not reinventing the wheel here, I’m sharing a post from my FB Farm page:



Jody and I were moving calves at the beef land to load. Little Toni and Daisy, walking in front of us toward the loading pen.
The mama cows behind us in the fields as we quietly walked the calves forward:
Jody, looking over his shoulder: ” What’s going on with that cow?”
About the time he finished his question with me walking ahead of him, I heard the distinct sound of heavy hooves hitting fast and hard in my direction. I knew — and my blood went cold. Somehow, I mustered enough presence in my terror to whirl around and scream as deeply as I ever have with my hands up ” NO !!! DALI , WOAH !!! ”
For some reason, she skidded to a stop less than 6 ft from me. I still can’t believe she stopped. In that moment, I thought, ‘ I’m dead where I stand. She’s going to hit me full force and batter me to death right here and there’s nothing Jody can do.’
Dali and I have a relationship of mutual distrust. She doesn’t like me at all, once head butting me in the kidneys for no reason and with no calf. I’m calling what happened an act of God. Seriously. I cannot imagine any other reason she would have stopped from an all out barrel at me with her head down and her heels kicking except a divine intervention on my behalf. She’s not intimidated by me in the slightest. Never was.
I don’t scare easily. It takes a lot. I’m telling y’all , my heart raced and pounded in my chest for at least 10 minutes. I told Al I cannot remember the last time I was that scared.
Afterward, Jody said he thought she was doing her happy dance while running. I told him Dali has no happy dance, that was her ‘ Mess with my calf and die ‘ dance.
#grateful #MadMamaCow #StandYourGroundEvenIfYouShake



How I ( want to ) write my livestock sales ads

c2Please read ad all the way through before you message me with questions I’ve already answered.  Nothing like being knee deep in pig mud or half way through milking cows and having someone ask you an unnecessary question, then get offended because you tell them the information they seek is plainly stated in the written ad.

Don’t tell me you want the animal but it is just too far to drive to come view or pick her up.  I’m in SC and have driven to W. Virginia, Kentucky and Michigan to pick up livestock I wanted.  Either she’s worth the drive to you, or not.  I don’t care either way.  I will not meet you half way, bring her to your house or do a trailer to trailer transfer and risk her life or someone else’s in order  to sell her to someone who can’t be bothered to come see her in person or make arrangements for her secure transport.

Do not show up on my farm with a makeshift pen or hand made trailer to transport my livestock.  I will not load my animal in a situation I feel is unsafe or a detriment to their health.  I care way more about my animals than I do a sale or your feelings.  If you’re buying a cow from me, you will need an enclosed livestock trailer.  Period.

Expect to talk to me on the phone if you are sincere about buying.  I do not make an agreement to sell without having a conversation with a buyer.

Be prepared to answer questions about your farm/homestead and your lifestyle.  I will not sell an animal to a buyer that is wrong for her.  If you are offended by my due diligence in placing my livestock, you should not bother to inquire.

Please have some basic knowledge of the type of livestock you wish to purchase and keep.  Don’t call me about my animal expecting me to tell you what her basic needs are as a species and for the love of bovines, don’t try to buy an animal that you know nothing about ! Do some research.  Talk to people who keep the same livestock.  Read some books.  If you show up at my farm and ask when you can start milking my 7 month old heifer, I’ll politely show you to the gates.  ( Yes, that happened )

Don’t ask me to take significantly less for my animal based on your desires, lack, financial strains, intentions ( pet V dairy girl )…  a farmer bases her pricing on multiple factors including stature, type, breed, desirability, market averages, age, production capability, lineage  etc…Frankly, if you cannot afford to buy the cow, you won’t be able to afford to keep her properly.  I have never closed a deal that began with a buyer stating ‘ I think you should take less because ‘.  We raise the animal, provide the proper medical attention and care, feed the animal etc..we have an investment in her.  We know what we need to get back and what she is worth on the market.

Respect my time limits.  I will offer a firm time and state how much time I have for you to come to view and ask questions. If you and I have agreed to meet at 10:00 and you show up at 10:38 without having called me ahead of time, you’ll likely find me doing other things and the gates locked. Depending on my schedule that day, I may or may not allow you in.   Understand that I have a tight schedule and ‘ free time’ is not something most farmers enjoy.  Aside from our farming duties, many of us have family obligations and jobs away from the home.  Don’t overstay your welcome, make excessive demands of our availability, be late for our appointment, or insult us by wasting our time when you have no real intention to buy.

Finally, and maybe this is just me ? Don’t feel the need to tell us about the minutia of your private life.  We need and want to know about your farm, living situation for the animal, intentions for her ( pet, dairy, beef, etc).  We do not need to know about your personal struggles, issues with your extended family, the bunion on your left foot that oozes, your bad back, etc.. Trust me, we’re farmers, we get it and most of us have such issues. Again, this goes to respect of our time.

A good basic set of rules for inquiring about and /or purchasing livestock is :

Keep it professional : Know your basic subject, don’t get personal, respect boundaries and time limits.

It’s  business: I don’t get offended by reasonable offers and you shouldn’t be offended if I refuse them.

My animal comes first:  one of the reasons you likely have interest in my animal is your knowledge that I give the utmost care and consideration to her.  If I tell you your situation isn’t right for that particular animal, respect that I know what I’m talking about.


Bacon Cheeseburger Soup

Yes ! This is my own recipe !


This recipe can be played with in so many ways to suit taste.

What you need:

2 lbs ground beef

1 lb. bacon

1 C cubed bacon or fatback

1 yellow pepper

1 red pepper

1 green bell pepper

5 cloves garlic

2 yellow onions

4 C beef broth or stock

3 carrots or 1 can carrots

1 can pureed tomatoes or 4 pureed whole tomatoes

1 can of diced tomatoes or 2 whole tomatoes, diced

2 C cheese of choice ( I like white sharp cheddar )

Pickled jalapenos ( very optional )




Chop your peppers and onions.  Peel and roughly chop your garlic.

In large skillet, add your ground beef , your cubed bacon or fat back, peppers, onions & garlic.  Brown.

While  your ground beef mixture is browning, put your bacon in oven at 375 on a baking sheet.  This makes the bacon more crumbly and crisp for sitting atop soup.

when your beef / bacon mixture is brown, drain off as much fat as possible. I set a metal colander over a large ceramic kitchen bowl and pour the mix in to drain.

In large soup pot add your beef/ bacon /veggie mix with broth/stock, all tomato ingredients , carrots & salt/pepper/parsley to taste. Bring to boil, stirring regularly.  reduce heat and simmer at least 30 minutes or as long as you like.

This is a particularly nice recipe for a crock pot, but the meat mixture should be browned first.

Grate your cheese and garnish with your cheese and crumbled , oven baked bacon.

If you like some spice or kick , pickled jalapenos are AWESOME as a garnish on this soup!