Making Hay
Week of April 18th, 2004 | The weather was pleasant.

Canadian geese enjoying our pond.

Canadian geese enjoying our pond.

Hello! I have been very busy this past week again at school. I participated in the New Hampton High School Spring Play, Rumors, by doing the sound and lights. The play was very good. We performed Saturday night.

I received another letter this month from my friend, Rachel, in Minnesota.

Dear James,

Now that it is April and we have been having warm weather, the snow is almost gone. The wetland is filling up with water. We saw our first geese and ducks swimming in the wetland on March 1st. During the week of the fourteenth, red wing black birds and killdeer returned.

We had three new calves born this month. Two were females that were black and white Holstein; the male was also black and white Holstein. We are expecting 5 more baby calves in the next month. It is a lot nicer doing chores, feeding the calves and the pigs now that the temperature is around 35-45 degrees.

The chickens are starting to lay eggs again; we get about 8 or 10 brown eggs a day. The breed of chicken is called Bard Rock; they are black and white chickens. We are hoping the warm weather continues, as it will bring green grass for the cows. Our hope is to have them back on pasture by the end of April. It is amazing to watch the cows for the first day of the season goes back out on pasture. It seems as if they run around looking to find the spot they want to stop and take that first bite.

Our female Chihuahua, Libby, we talked about last month being pregnant, went into labor March 9th at 1:30 in the morning. My mom stayed up all night with Libby while she had her puppies. The first one was a little boy that was white with black spots, the 2nd one was a chocolate color with black around his eyes and was a boy, and then the 3rd one was a girl. She was white with brown spots. The Chihuahuas were the size of a small child's hand.

The little girl puppy is starting to open her eyes. She will be able to see who her mommy is and her little brothers. (Puppies are born with there eyes shut, the eyes will open when there around two weeks of age)

On the 27th I will be attending with my family a dairy banquet. I will receive my crown and sash; I am a dairymaid, along with about 10 other girls to represent the dairy farmers in my county.

I will keep in touch, and have a story to tell about our little calves. Until next month, enjoy the warm weather.

Rachel

Thanks, Rachel! We've been having some very pleasant weather- temperatures in the 70's and 80's this past week. I have wanted to go outside, but since I am involved with so many activities at school, it is hard to find that kind of time. I have seen geese and ducks in our farm pond, too. I also saw a very large turtle.

Friday night, I had a bonfire party. A lot of my friends came. Dad and I lit the brush at 9:00 p.m., but we got rained out. We still had fun. The brush pile material came from one of our old groves, which was torn down last fall for more parking area for our machinery (mainly for our feed business). Since this pile of brush is now out of our way, I will be working the ground and planting grass seed in the area.

Farm Fact: A pond can be a great addition to a farm. These ponds allow animals like ducks, geese, turtles, fish, etc. to create a new habitat (home). All these animals bring diversity to farms. A farm pond is an excellent way to use a field with poor soil or to decrease run off from the field.

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