Big Relief!!!

I lost sleeping worrying last night; I expect Wally did as well.  Poncho, the Jersey bull, who had gotten so rowdy, was scheduled to go to the processor today and we were both worried about getting him loaded.  While I milked, Wally went down and brought the cows up and installed Poncho in a “stall” made from round pen panels, which he promptly started to bang around.  A pitch fork-full of oat hay settled him enough for me to finish milking.  Then we went down to do the dreaded task.

Wally backed the trailer up to the opening of the stall and we swung the gate open so the only way “out” was onto the trailer.  Wally went in with a stock stick and tried to move him towards the trailer.  No go.  Meanwhile, Gel was chomping at the bit.  I told to go ahead and in he went.  Poncho loaded on that trailer like his tail was on fire!  We’ve never loaded an animal so quickly.  Once he was in there, be started bellowing and thrashing around, but we didn’t care about that.

Loading Spot, the last cow we brought to the processor did not go well.  We’ve learned a lot since then.

Unloading him was a snap.  I filled out the paperwork stating how I wanted him processed and off we went, breathing HUGE sighs of relief.

Since I bought the book, Good Meat, I’ve been dying to get hold of “other” cuts of beef to experiment, but I don’t think Poncho was big enough to get any roasts or steaks of any size.  We asked for a few steaks and the rest of the meat ground.  We are also going to get some of the beef mixed with some locally-raised ground pork to make a mixture which is fabulous for meatloaves, meat balls or grilling.  In addition to the meat, I asked for all of the organ meat, cheek meat, fat, bones, ox tail, etc.  Hopefully we’ll have enough freezer space for everything.

I’m going to go to the Amish farm again tomorrow to help process chickens.  I’m taking some of ours that are ready to be processed.  Hopefully after this time (hopefully I’ll get more hands on experience than I did last time), I’ll be able to do it myself.

There’s a 50 percent chance of rain tonight and I hope we get some.  There is little chance of rain for the rest of the week.  I guess we’ll be watering the garden if it doesn’t rain.  I’m pleased with how the garden looks now.  I wanted to get in there today, but other things got in the way.

I’m so glad that Wally is starting to show more interest (or should I say enthusiasm?) for the farm and upcoming products.  I think going to the Farmer’s Market has opened him up to the possibilities of the farm.  I’m glad … whoops, already said that.

Until later …