Sunday, May 26, 2013

The First Week

 "Freedom is not something that anybody can be given.  
Freedom is something people take, 
and people are as free as they want to be.  
-James Baldwin

Well, we made it through the first week of milking.  Those initial three days were pretty treacherous.  Ginger was so engorged in the beginning that her udder was stretched tight.  It was extremely difficult to milk her but we knew that we had to relieve her to prevent mastitis.  Sweet, sweet Ginger must have been in so much pain she was constantly kicking us if we even thought of touching her teats.  Many a tear was shed that weekend but after milking several times a day for those first three days, we prevailed.  We now have a good rhythm!  Bringing Cocoa up into the milking parlor with Ginger has made all the difference.  We tie him next to his mom and he usually just lies down to take a little nap.  Cocoa is a hungry guy and has no problems finding the delicious milk.  He is growing so fast!  I think he has doubled in size in a week.  While he is gaining weight Ginger is thinning out, losing some of her pregnancy reserves.  The big question is what to do with the abundance of milk?  We have been experimenting with lots of cheese making, including our first Soul Flower Farm cheddar, as well as making whip cream, super yellow butter, and today some honey ice cream.  The cream at the top of the milk is amazing, I have never tasted anything like it.  Life is so full of adventure.  Sometimes I get perspective and think we must be absolutely bonkers to be doing all this.  But then I am swept back up in the wild ride which is so often full of joy, ecstasy, and that feeling that keeps us persevering...freedom.  

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