Dan & Michelle Crout - Crout Farm

Diary of Michelle Crout – Crout Farm, Week 2, August 8-14, 2011

August 8

Today is Monday and the usual happenings on the Crout farm, such as milking and cleaning. I will have our granddaughter, Hannah all week long because the other babysitter is on vacation. This will limit my time in the parlor to clean, so I will have to do that at a later date.  Hannah is so much fun to watch and see her learn new things and begin to talk in her own language! Dan is spraying several bean fields today. This spray is to control weeds because if you don’t the weeds will take the nutrients and moisture away from the bean plant.

August 9

We received a good rain last night which brought in some cooler weather. That has made a significant change in the cows eating and production level. The hot weather puts unwanted stress on their bodies. Today Dan will meet with our crop insurance adjuster on our wheat. He also has a doctor’s apt. which will take time out of his day to get things accomplished. There is a CAUV meeting tonight that Dan plans on attending.

August 10

Dan is mowing more hay today. We are getting closer to finishing the second cutting. As long as the weather cooperates and keeps raining we will receive a 3rd cutting. Hannah and I went out to lunch with friends today and when we arrived home our dairy field man was there. He was making his rounds to farms and letting us know our state survey was going to be sooner than anticipated. He checks to make sure we are keeping up with all the proper cleaning in order to pass the inspection. We get inspected every 3 to 6 months by a milk inspector, and then a major survey once a year from the state. They are very strict and sometimes I think they go overboard on insignificant items. But they are doing their job and keeping us on our toes!

August 11

To continue from the day before on inspection I would like to go into a little more detail. These are some of the areas they look for when they arrive at your farm: all around cleanliness, proper storage and labeling of medicines, equipment cleanliness as well as functioning properly. The inspector checks out the 800 gallon milk tank that holds and cools our milk, looks for any faulty electric or leaking faucets. They want any rubber hoses hanging up and supplies in their proper place for safety. They also take samples of our water to make sure it is the proper ph balance to clean equipment. The inspector has a check list that he uses while examining our farm. Any checks will be deducted from the total and that will be our score. They are very thorough and if you score below an 80, you will be visited again at a later date to see that you have made the proper changes. We’ve always done well but it hasn’t been without a lot of hard work and dedication to keep things clean and in tip-top shape!

August 12

Today is bailing day. There was heavy dew so we will have to wait for the sun and wind to help dry the hay on top before raking.  To utilize our time, Dan is leaving to go finish spraying beans, away from home. Having some tractor issues which delays the process. Hannah has been good all week and while she’s taking her nap, I’m able to write in my diary. Our daughter, Shannon is coming home this weekend for Hannah’s birthday party. As I mentioned before, she will be turning 1 year old. Time has gone so fast! It is a real joy to be grandparents!

August 13

Today we will be hustling in order to get the work accomplished and be ready to leave for the party at 12:30. Her party is at Miller Park in Richmond, Indiana at a shelter. Got some travel time which will make our time short in order to feed at 4:00. That’s one of the disadvantages of milking cows. You have to be home every day at 4:00 in order to feed and milk. Most vacations are few and sometimes none at all. That is one thing I wish I could change.

August 14

Another week gone, it seems to go by so fast anymore. Today is still the usual work load with the exception that we go to church. It is refreshing to go to the house of the Lord and bask in His presence. It helps feed your faith and encourages your heart to continue to run the race. We have enjoyed our time with Shannon even though it is short. She will be heading back to Michigan on Monday.  Well, it is that time again, need to go feed. Looks like rain, sure hope is does.





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