Blogs | Living the Country Life


December 17, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
We sent the last 20 market lambs to auction on Saturday. They averaged 130 pounds and brought $1.58 a pound. That's double what lambs brought last year (which was a disaster). Our sheep were extremely healthy all year. We lost one lamb to coyotes,...see all
December 16, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
I hosted a Christmas dinner for family on Sunday. What fun. The best part of any family gathering is storytelling around the kitchen table. Here are two of my favorites. The Missing Roasting Pan When Bob's family moved to their acreage almost 40...see all
December 12, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob is working cattle again today. It's been a long, cold week. Here's something fun I shot last week...On a hilly farm in southern Warren County, veterinarian Bob Freese preg-checks 280 cows in three hours! Check out a glimpse of the process. http...see all
December 11, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob had to do a c-section on this show heifer -- she had a huge calf! The weather has been so brutally cold, he kept the cow and calf at the clinic overnight. Dr. Brennan tried to milk the cow, but she was practically dry. He mixed up milk replacer...see all
December 9, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
We got our first snow of the winter along with bitter cold, but that didn't stop construction on the homemade sheep shed. Warren and Bob put the roof on, and then Bob cut and installed the side panels using a borrowed "nibbler" tool that punches...see all
December 6, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob made homemade peanut brittle last night for our church cookie walk fundraiser. There are lots of recipes that work fine. The process takes patience, a lot of stirring, and a big candy thermometer. Here are more tips: Butter cookie sheets...see all
December 3, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob preg-checked 280 cows in three hours this morning on a hilly farm in southern Warren County. I followed him out there to take photos. It was foggy, the roads were gravel with twists and turns, and he drives very fast. C'mon, man! The process...see all
December 2, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Dairy farmers typically call the vet around 4 a.m, or milking time. Milk fever, or hypcalcemia, is a common emergency. At calving time, large amounts of calcium are removed from the cow's blood and used in colostrum. The rapid drop in calcium can...see all
November 27, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
Moving On An ATV accident changed this family farm forever. How they learned to adapt. By Betsy Freese; Photos by Caroline Freese The Sawyer family includes (from left) Lorna, Norman, Ruben (4 days old in this picture), Neal, and Lucie. On April...see all
November 25, 2013 | Betsy's Backyard
An Arctic blast dropped temps to 3 degrees over the weekend, but that didn't stop our fun. On Friday night, the Indianola Veterinary Clinic unveiled its fabulous float for the Jolly Holiday Lights parade around the town square, winning the Chamber's...see all