Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014 Year End Review: Farm

After I highlighted my efforts in agvocacy in 2014 I thought it would be fun to take a look at what happened on our farm this year!
The biggest change for 2014 was the number of cows in our herd. For the second time ever and in the last two years we opened our closed herd to bring in animals from two Oregon herds that were selling their Guernseys. We used to say the future was near that we might be the only large number Guernsey herd in Oregon, sadly that day arrived. So with mixed emotions we welcomed 16 head from the Bosch family, Kilchona Farm in Tillamook, at the beginning of April. We have never brought that many animals into the herd at once, but the transition went smoothly and the timing could not have been better being out on pasture. Then in November the opportunity to bring 8 cows from the Wil-Rene herd, of the Jansen family from Forest Grove, presented itself. The timing was opposite, but we couldn't say no to these great genetics and again the transition went smoothly. 
Bette & Baja two days after their arrived!
 This brings our milking cows number to consistently over 90 cows and at max for our facility. We wouldn't push our facility if we weren't already planning an expansion into a new robotic facility by 2016, with 120 milking cows. 2015 is going to bring a lot of change, crazy busyness and challenge, but we are so excited to meet this new venture and build the future of our farm!

So let's look at what these lovely Ladies achieved in 2014.
We shipped 1,402,447lbs of milk. That is 163,076 gallons!! 
Received a quality award from our coop for producing milk above the standard requirements for the 2013/2014 fiscal year. 
 We welcomed 80 new calves! 41 Bulls and 39 Heifers. And had a record breaking 5 sets of twins, two sets being born on the same day, which has never happened here before! One set of twin heifers, one set of twin bulls and three sets of heifer and bull.
Welcome to: Jazzelle, Jellato, Regina, Rowdy, RockyRoad, Jentle, Sprout, Babs & Bobbie, Raindrop, Diana, Super, Louisa, Blackcap, Chanelle, Blueheat, Bungalow, Jesstine, Brenna, Fancie, Jorja, Venita, Rainy, Snowdust, Moodini, Minuette, Bessy, Jessandra, Jazarah, Jacket, Spaz, Milan, Jellica, Roana and 5 more newborns awaiting names!
Twin heifers for Babette. Bobbi & Babs
Captured this sweet moment of Velma and her 12th calf!
 A few personal cow achievements. Kicked off the year with one of our favorite young cows Abiqua Acres Martini Jen classifying EX-90. We celebrated Abiqua Acres Goliath Velma's sweet 16th birthday. We also had a successful show season, taking strings to the Oregon State Fair and Northwest National Guernsey Show. We took grand champion with Abiqua Acres Challenge Spirit at Oregon and placed in the top half of all our classes at the Northwest.  Bittersweet this Fall as we lost our favorite show cow Abiqua Acres Aaron Meara, she has been greatly missed!
Grand Champion Challenge Spirit
It's been a good year for the dairy industry. Milk prices were at record highs and feed prices stayed reasonable, meaning we saw a tiny profit this year, which will hopefully hold us through the rough outlook for the year ahead. Just like always most days saw us with ups and downs on the dairy farm. This is the life we love and we wouldn't have it any other way than spending it with the lovely brown and white Ladies we love! So Thank You 2014 and bring it on 2015! 


  1. Wow I'm so happy I found your blog. I follow you on instagram. We are beef farmers in pa. And it's so neat to read about other farmers. And their wives ass day to day chores may be differ but some struggles are the same. I have a 3 month old boy and still trying to figure out how to still do my chores.

    1. Yay thank you for joining me here!! The struggle with kids in tow at chore time is SO real! When we figure it out we deserve a an extra big prize! Seriously thank you for taking the time to connect with me here!