Kids and Cow Shows 

Some times we have temporary moments of insanity as parents. Our minds go blank and for some unknown reason all solid judgement flies away. 

This past Monday night I let all 3 of my kids sleep in the barn the night before a cow show. That’s right a 7, 5 and 2 year old. In a barn. If you’ve ever thought I was a little nutty, here’s your verification. 

This began with me nestling the wild tribe down about an hour before I actually figured they’d willingly drift off. Everyone’s cozy, quieting down and then the fitter shows up to work on heifers. The kids heifers. Whom they have pampered all summer. Not to mention they find this poor fella fitting amazing.Yea, that coziness lasted long… 

Taylor doing a rough clip job on his heifer, Boo.

Fast forward about a half hour. Emma’s eyes are closed. Still semi on track. BAM! Good news, on the first night of the fair there are fireworks (unknown tidbit I now know). Cows jerk back, kids fly up. Bye bye attempt number 2 at sleep… Not only did we watch fireworks from the barn, we buddied up with friends to watch the light show. 

Finally shortly before 11 pm the tribe has all drifted to dream land. Henry’s on a cot, while Emma and Taylor opted for a few bales of hay. 

By some miracle, I think it was God rewarding my patience, they slept until after 7. With all the pre show noise and commotion, they kept on snoozing. Don’t fear the woke up ready to go! 

Except for Emma. Who “couldn’t get comfortable on the bed of bales, had no room when she moved to a cot, then woke up cold, congested and hungry.” Yes, she’s this pleasant every morning. 

But some breakfast lifted their spirits. 

Don’t worry the cups empty. Im not that crazy…

Pancakes and bacon lift anyones spirits!

They got their booties in gear and had a great time showing! Poor Emma, her heifer decided to be a “rascal” as she called her. So if you catch it in the peewee class pictures, I’m well aware that’s not the big black heifer you’ve seen pictures of all summer. 

Taylor and Boo

Henry and Reba (with some help). Notice he had to bring some hydration with him 😂

Emma and her borrowed buddy Cleopatra

We all made it! Some how, some way it went fairly smoothly. So smoothly the little goobers might convince me to it again next year 😉

Cheeseburgers and Choices 

When you become a parent you have to eventually let your children make decisions of their own. Sometimes you agree with these choices, sometimes you think they’ve gone crazy but go with the flow. Live and learn after all!

Taylor is 5. He’s passionate about the farm. In all honesty he may interact with more consumers at the grocery store than even the best agriculture advocates. He once sat for a considerable length of time telling a lady at the local grocery store how hard all the cows worked to make the gallon of milk she just picked up. She at first looked at him like he was a little crazy, then loved his story. 

Taylor also knows all the in and outs of farming. He knows when the trucker comes to pick up cull (no longer desirable to be milked) cows they aren’t going “on vacation”. We’ve always been up front and honest with our kids. When these cows leave the barn, they are destined to be entering the food chain. 

This past fall the kids saw this first hand. One of our ladies who was always too high strung for her own good fell. When she fell she broke one of her rear legs. Cattle can’t walk on 3 legs. An adult cow can’t be casted or braced successfully. We were left with 2 options, either simply euthanize her or to butcher and process her for our consumption. We choose the second option. She was a large, healthy cow and would provide both our families plus employees with ample amounts of burger. 

The kids did not witness her being processed, however the whole experience made this aspect of eating a little more real for our kind hearted Taylor. When the burger came home he asked with big eyes “Is that #6?” I gave him an honest yes for an answer. 

For the next month or so he would only pick at dishes served for dinner made from ground beef. Recently he has began politely declining beef and only eating the sides served with it, even though I made it very known that we had eaten all of #6. 

Farm boys are often classified as “meat and potato” eaters. Hearty meals are needed to recoup all that energy spent working hard all day. My farm boy is content eating chicken and pork these days. His current motto may be “Cows are friends, not food”. 

While the rest of our family might not partake in his eating choices, I think it’s best to support him. It could be a phase, he could be a budding vegetarian, chances are he may be eating cheeseburgers by Christmas. Until that time I’m looking for many more chicken recipes and hearty sides!