We aren’t moving this year, but we’re having a changing of the guard at our place, as contract milkers move onto different opportunities and we welcome some new kids onto the block.
I am busy perfecting muffin recipes to take to the new team – Julio thinks that’s overkill, but I just like using my new oven. That’s one of the perks of moving day for us – pass the appliances.
I don’t mean to be brag, but a few short weeks ago, I got an oven with a door with a proper seal, four working elements and a wangle fangle feature called “fan bake”.
My cousin and his wife are moving from South Waikato to Otorovegas with their twins, which means stepping up the babysitting duty on my part, and gladly accepting fresh, free range eggs from my aunty (all the better for muffins you see).
My sharemilking cousins are bringing their 350 Jersey girls to the new place, and I’m excited about getting some of their good gene pool into the mix at our place. After the stress of MOOving day for sharemilkers and contract milkers, there’s only a couple of weeks reprieve before the busiest time of year (dun dun dun) – calving!
Last week I went to a Dairy Women’s Network calf rearing workshop, hosted by Seales Winslow and VetEnt to brush up on my knowledge when it comes to raising happy, healthy calves. We learnt about the importance of colostrum in the first 24 hours, and about having a warm, dry, well ventilated shed for your baby bovines.
It’s also important to keep all the equipment clean. I drive Julio nuts with my excessive use of boiling water and soaking and scrubbing of calf related equipment. Wendy from Seales Winslow didn’t mention this, but it also pays to make a litre or two extra for the wild cats who know where it’s at when it comes to warm milk.
The calf shed is nearly built at our place, and Julio is excitedly researching the appropriate pump to move the milk from the mixer to the feeder, because I definitely do not even crossfit so cleaning and jerking 25kg buckets is not an option.
Calving is a great time to dust off the slow cooker and brush up on your casserole recipes. Better still, make a big batch of pulled meat and see how many different ways you can use it in a week.
One thing that will ease the pain of sleep deprivation during calving is the money you can save when you move your dairy farm with Meridian. When Cory came to see our neighbour Marty, Cory estimated Marty would save $900 by moving to Meridian.
This saving was made up of the $100 credit for the first meter, and $50 for every subsequent meter that Marty moved to Meridian, as well making the most of Meridian’s seasonal pricing – he’ll pay less for shed power in summer.
It’s not too late to move easy with Meridian (you’ve got until June 30), so jump online and get in touch before the madness of calving creeps up! And don’t forget about the Ubco 2×2 electric farm bike you could win.