Winter has been exactly as long as it’s supposed to be, no longer and maybe even shorter. A couple of weeks ago I was starting to feel a little whine-ey for lack of sunshine and grass, but once again I have no complaints. I almost forget I was whine-ey at all – it’s been balmy and sunny and productive. Humid even.
Grass is back baby, grass is back.
While tonight temperatures are dropping once again – fingers crossed for the apple trees – spring is definitely upon us. Soon enough the flat-out sprint begins once again… get stuff planted, fuss, weed, mow, harvest, process, plant, weed, mow, harvest, process, plant, weed, mow, harvest, process… figure out how to store it all… before I know it, it’ll be time for frost.
Relentless isn’t it? Anyway, the Ladies can’t figure out what all the rushing around is about. Their bellies are full, their days are spent hanging out, grooming their friends, resting, cud-chewing, napping, stuffing themselves and waiting.
Waiting? Last year by this time, the calves were nearing a month old. Not ideal by my standards, but luck smiled upon us (sort of; drought to follow) with an unusually warm and balmy winter, so all was well. Only one, Suzette, was born in the quiet dawn just before a snowstorm but I was able to get her safely inside and tucked into a fluffy hay nest.
The class of 2012. All a bunch of awkward shaggy juvies now
Not willing to push my luck, this year I timed everything to sync with the flush of spring grass and safer weather. So today, we wait. My calendar says to look for calves beginning April 22, and judging by bellies & udders, Suki, Zay, Molly and Bling are all in a race to be first, with Femme, Sprite, Saralee, Regina and Hannabelle hot on their heels.
This race could go any way really, and is still open for a straggler to take the lead.
Our oafish friend Ellis the Destroyer is still up to his old tricks – he’s added flipping gates off their hinges and popping fence posts to his resume – but I cannot fault him on his professionalism and efficiency.
What are your spring to-do’s?