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Diary of a dairy farm

I have been disappointed lately, not because some people want to eliminate government dairy supports but because they imply that Bill and I are deliberately producing surpluses because of the handsome subsidies we receive. Pleasem come to our farm. Or pleasem read our schedule of work (we like to work!). I took the advice of a recent article and kept track of what was done by taking a clipboard along on one day typical of last fall's harvest and planting season: BILL'S DAY

6:00. Milking started -- set up, cows in, milk, take down.

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10:00. Run beans.

2:00-2:30. Lunch.

2:30. Run beans.

5:45. Scoop silage for milk cows.

6:00. Run beans.

9:30. Finish beans. Put trucks away. Three trucks picked.

10:00. Fix supper. DIKA'S DAY 8:20. Chores -- 5 bucket calves, rest of calves, 12 bred sows, 53 newly weaned pigs, 33 market hogs, 7 dry sows. (One market hog limping on right hind foot, red gilt number 2 --

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9:05. Milk house -- feed 9 bucket calves, clean parlor and milk house thoroughly, schedule work for day with Bill.

10:50. Get pickup and move 4 bucket calves from milk barn to calf barn.

11:20. Rearrange calves left in milk barn and make 1 new pen for the coming calf. (Didn't make new pen -- need more straw.)

11:30. Home -- lunch -- laundry -- clean kitchen --straiGhten house. (Walked in the house to a kitchen floor covered with water -- leak somewhere under the sink, home duties postponed until 1 get if fixed. Cannot find leak, think it is in sprayer hookup which I don't use because it leaks. Can't bother Bill 'til a lull in the harvest, so I'll keep watching and mopping.) 1 load laundry in. 1 load hung to dry. Dry laundry in for kids to fold.

1:35. Bake a batch of cookies. Lunch for Bill. Shot of calf. Looked over Sharon's piano book.

3:15. Cookies to milk barn. Check cow number 18. Also washed bulk tank, set up milkers, cows in lot.

3:55. 1 load laundry out to dry. 1 load in washer. snack and talk with kids.

4:20. Start chores -- feed calves, check hogs.

5:25. Start milking.

6:00. Run Bill over to truck.

6:05. Start milking again.

8:55. Finish milking.

9:15. Tadedown finished, start feeding calves.

9:35. Finished at milk barn.

10:00. Finished!! (Fed 6 bucket calves at home.)

10:00-10:30. Supper. Clean up us. Bed.

About this schedule, most other days are like this for Bill: 6:00-10:00, milk-related chores; 10:00-12:00, other work, chores, repairs; 1:30-4:30, fence-building, repairs, building; 4:30-8:30, milk-related chores.

We are a family farm, so these are sevenm -day-a-week Schedules.

Holiday schedules for Christmas and New Year's: Bill, 6:00-12:00, chores, milking. Dika, 8:00-10:00, chores. Bill, 5:00-9:00, chores milking. Dika, 5: 00-6:00, chores.

The rest of the time off.

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