Do Lions Eat Groundhogs?

Do Lions Eat Groundhogs?

While the end of 2020 was widely celebrated the 2021 hello here on the farm wasn’t so welcoming.  Hello two BEAUTIFUL inches of ice.

Winter requires us to switch from grass to hay.  Missouri landscapes mean our cows aren’t all in one place.  So we use our beloved hay bed and drive around delivering hay.  Don’t get me wrong its nice to see the cows all run and welcome you each day.  It makes looking at each cow for a quick health check easier than when they prefer to stay spread out at their own patch of grass and you must seek them out.  But it’s COLD and I like to be warm (ok maybe LOVE to be warm, like wool socks year-round kinda warm.

 So, while all our friends are wake up with a hot coffee or cocoa enjoy the lovely reflections of light off shimmering ice coated trees, we instead are driving in it.  When afternoon Netflix entertainment wears off and suddenly the need for grocery run seem important, my phone begins to ding.  How are the roads?  They ask because they know I know.  Cattle farmers do not get snow days off. 

Here comes February and the silly ground hog.  You see your shadow?  I’ll show you a shadow!  We take a vacation most years in February.  It’s generally an easier time to be gone with no crops to tend, no hay to bale, and normally calving is finished.  Well, this year mother nature sent us zero degree weather.  The kind that causes “freeze-proof” water troughs to freeze.  The kind when tractors that are plugged in still don’t start.  That kind of cold weather.  Vacation isn’t as fun when you are worried about home.  Luckily we have a great support system and everything went well.  Our super support team still wasn’t disappointed when we ourselves had to deal with the second week of ridiculous cold cow care.

January ice, February zero, March….. lamb!  What!  I was totally prepared for a  lion to come in and gobble us up here on the farm, but here comes beautiful weather!  Calves frolicking in the sunshine.  Sunsets so gorgeous they stop the hay truck for a mandatory appreciation moment.  The kind of beautiful spring weather they write about in fairy tales. 

So as I write this enjoying another lovely warm farm day I also remember that last year this was my last week of COVID-free bliss.  Tucked away in our rural Missouri corner business were all fully open, schools were in third quarter round up and the only masks were healthcare and toddler superheroes.  So, as I mentally prepare myself for the lion waiting to eat me at the end of March I will learn from last years lion.  I will count my blessings more frequently.  This time of social distancing has left a mark on our emotional connections.  Always needing that reminder to count my blessings more frequently.  I will savor this lovely weather and be glad that our social distances are slowly getting shorter.  I will fire up my grill and invite my small COVID approved group over for burgers or steaks.  We shall enjoy this “lamb” weather with good food and much need laughter.

Here’s to your first grilling of 2021!

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