Thursday, December 10, 2009

Her Cream Come True

Emma and Fiona McBride

Fiona playing kickball in the dog yard where she is living temporarily

Friday morning Emma sang along to a Bob Wills recording of Milk Cow Blues. She certainly had them. We had been searching for a milk cow for almost a year. Miraculously, Saturday night we brought one home.

This startling development caused my dear husband extreme anguish. He, like most sensible people, prefers to have all preparations complete before bringing home farm animals. I operate under the "If they come, he will build it," philosophy. Unfortunately, Herb flew to Chicago on Sunday and won't return until late tonight.

In the meantime, Emma and I are working out a milking routine. She is doing all the cow work, and I am doing all the kitchen work. Several times a day we open the refrigerator to watch the cream rising in the Mason jars. Last night she made a sample batch of butter, and we added a pint jar of real buttermilk to the milk inventory.

By comparing the jars, we can see Emma's milking technique and hand strength improve daily. She is getting lots of cream now. The first night she got none. Although she milked for an hour and a half, she never could completely empty Fiona's udder.

Now Fiona and Emma are much more relaxed. Emma sings to Fiona while she milks. When the milking is done, Emma hugs her, scratches her neck, and whispers sweet nothings in her ears. Fiona likes it, and it is starting to pay off. Last night Emma told me that Fiona kept moving back and forth while Emma was trying to milk. Emma re-positioned her stool several times, but Fiona would move again. Finally, Emma said that she sweetly complained to Fiona, and Fiona turned her head, looked at Emma, and moved back in place, even shifting one leg so that Emma had the best access to the udder.


Emily G. said...

Fiona is such a pretty cow! Congratulations to Emma, and to all of you, really, since you'll all be enjoying the milk. I used to sing to my goats when I milked them. Your stories brought back happy memories.

Wendy Haught said...

Thanks, Emily!