Autumn Corn

corn field in the fall

A faint breeze rolls the scent of dry corn around me as I walk.  I always wish I had better words, especially in autumn.  The scent of dying leaves is familiar to most but the lucky people who get to smell sweet, ripe, dry corn are especially fortunate.

One year our family decided to make all our Christmas gifts.  I chose to make wreaths for all the women in the family out of corn husks.  I’ll never forget gathering the dried ones that were left behind in the golden field after corn harvest.  Wind was gusty out in the middle of the empty corn field as I picked up ruffled husks with the intention to create what I thought would be a thing of rustic beauty to gift my girls.  That was a memorable Christmas and some of those wreaths are still around.

The landscape belongs to the person who looks at it.  –Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Maggie

Maggie at the school desk

Maggie with puppyHow to describe Maggie? Born happy? I guess this picture says it all. Bubbly and with a joy in her when she was little that just had to give voice. When in restaurants she let out her shrieks of excitement (can’t they control that child?) Her happy, unorthodox squeal in restaurants when she was a toddler should have alerted us to the fact that she would always choose her own way and be true to her beliefs. She is one of our city girls, highly intelligent, conversely bubbly while inwardly deeply introspective and sensitive. She has a great sense of adventure and is devotedly religious. Though still in college, she has been to France twice and plans to travel there again when she graduates and possibly make it her home.

“The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.” – Michelangelo

A Man Named Truck

Truck has to be one of the nicest men who has ever worked on our farm. He has come every other Wednesday for years to manicure our cows’ hooves.

Does it look like this cow is enjoying her pedicure?

 

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Sorry, Bessie, it’s for your own good!

I’ve had a couple pedicures and felt much more relaxed than she seems to be, but then I wasn’t put in a contraption that tipped me on my side and held me immobile during the procedure. To keep them still and prevent injuries, cattle are run into an upright stanchion and then tipped so the procedure goes smoothly. Hooves are trimmed and buffed as a preventative measure that helps prevent sore feet and foot rot.

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We all love Truck, even if the cows aren’t so sure.

Also, since cows spend lots of time on concrete, they can develop a condition known as sled foot which is when the hoof continues to grow out making it hard for them to walk. While cattle are immobile, their ear tags are washed and they are checked for any other irregularities or possible health problems. Truck does approximately 25 head (or 100 hooves!) each week he’s here. Cattle are rotated on a continuous basis so that each one is checked regularly for problems.