June is Dairy Month

How can it be that June 2014 is almost history?!!  I have so much that I want to share about the dairy industry that I might have to play like it is June for a few more weeks!

I fell in love with a dairy farmer 31 years ago. Kevin grew up milking Holsteins with his family. Right before we got married changes were made in the farming operation which included the elimination of dairy farming. However, Holsteins with their black and white markings (each has its own unique markings) still remain a major part of our operation, but in a different way! Many people driving by or arriving at the farm think we must milk when they see all of our Holsteins – after all, out of all the breeds of U.S. Dairy Cattle, 93% of dairy cattle are Holsteins! 429913_10150908360632824_1020681516_n


Even though we do not milk cows (dairy farm) our cattle operation depends on a dairy farm as we purchase the bull (male) calves from a dairy farm. When they arrive at our farm, each calf weighs about 90 lbs. and we feed them out (1400 lbs.) They become yummy hamburgers and mouth watering steaks! ( A cow must have a calf in order to give milk.) When Kevin’s family milked cows the milk was sold to a local dairy – Anderson Erickson in Des Moines just as the dairy farm we work with sells their milk today. As a child my family purchased Anderson Erickson and I remember having it delivered to our back door in town!


Home delivery of milk (i.e. the milkman) started in 1942 as a war conservation measure.

A glass of chocolate milk is a great way to replenish your energy after a hard day’s work or sporting event.

To learn more about dairy farming and dairy nutrition see Midwest Dairy Association.

A couple of classroom resources include pages 12 & 13 of Iowa Agriculture for Kids and the following DVD
One of the ways you can get a serving of dairy is from eating ice cream.  Kevin’s cousin’s family recently opened a wonderful ice cream shop!  See more details on their Facebook page.
Deep Rock Ice Cream Shoppe – Sully, IADeep Rock Ice Cream Shoppe

Here are a couple of un facts about ice cream. 1.) It takes 12 lbs. of whole milk to make one gallon of ice cream.
2.) More ice cream is sold on Sunday than on any other day of the week.

Today I am including one of my family’s favorite ice cream dessert recipes.  It is a great one for hot summer days it does not require the oven!

Malt Shop Desssert



16 oz. crushed graham crackers
¼ c. butter
¼ cup sugar
Press in a 9×13 pan.

½ gal. vanilla ice cream
1 c. chopped malted milk balls*
2 Tbsp. milk
Mix and spread on crust.

6 Tbsp. chocolate flavored Malted Milk
6 Tbsp. Marshallow Creme
2 Tbsp. milk
2 c. whipping cream
Whip. Spread over ice cream mixture. Sprinkle with more malted milk balls.

*(12 oz. pkg. malted milk balls)

In the spring, especially for Easter, I use the malted eggs for a little color.

Enjoy a tall refreshing glass of milk or a yummy dip of ice cream today!

Growing Season

Both livestock and crops are growing on our farm this summer. Last Tuesday we received a new group of pigs. The calves that arrived in May are beginning to be weaned. Today marks the day that we are down to feeding milk once a day, which means we chore in the calf shed twice a day instead of three times each day. We are thankful today that our crops are still looking great. However, we realize that it can change in an instant. Our hearts go out to those affected in northwest & southwest Iowa, and southern Minnesota.


Pigs arrived last Tuesday!


City Cousin Heather turns “pig farmer”.

Hayden Pigs

Our friend Hayden loves bacon!


Corn on June 6, 2014.


Corn on June 16, 2014.


Emily has created a Facebook page for J & E’s Delicious Sweet Corn.  Make sure to ‘like’ it for the latest updates on Jacob & Emily’s sweet corn business.


Photo by Joe Murphey, Iowa Soybean Association




Sweet Corn on June 6, 2014



J & E’s Sweet Corn with the oats and field corn in the background.


Sweet Corn on June 16, 2014


We also have a few acres of oats. Besides being a part of crop rotation, oats provide a much needed product for us – STRAW! After the oats are combined we bale small square bales of straw. We use the straw daily for bedding in the calf shed.




Oats on June 16, 2014


The soybeans here at home were planted a little later than the rest of the soybeans.


Soybeans: June 16, 2014



Snickers is inspecting the sweet corn patch as she helps Emily take pictures.

Snickers is inspecting the sweet corn patch as she helps Emily take pictures.



This is the group of calves that are just before the group in the calf shed now.  Calf Care – Our Babes  They  will soon be moved into a hoop barn in order for the calves in the calf shed to be moved to this barn before our next anticipated arrival of calves in the middle of July.


Our calves are growing too!


Have a good day!




Happy National Donut Day!


Today is National Donut (Doughnut) Day !  Most days after morning chores are complete it is time for coffee time.  Coffee time usually consists of one of the following:  cookies, bars, muffins, fruit, crackers/cheese, and sometimes the special treat of donuts.  Most of the time the donuts come from town; however, when Emily is home she treats us to homemade donuts.  It was a 4-H goal to make them for county fair.  ( A nutrition/price comparison food & nutrition exhibit is a good learning experience.)  Emily received donut pans for Christmas one year and a little donut maker.  Well, needless to say, it is one project that never made it to county fair.  So – now I hope I have provided someone with inspiration for a 4-H project for this county fair season that is quickly approaching!  (Oh, how I remember those days as both a 4-H’er and a parent!)


2 1/4 cups cake flour                     2/3 cup sugar

2 tsp. baking powder                     ¼ tsp. nutmeg

¼ tsp. cinnamon                              1 tsp. salt

1 cup buttermilk*                          2 eggs, lightly beaten

3 T. butter*, melted

*Celebrate June Dairy Month!


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray doughnut pan with nonstick baking spray; set aside.
  2. In large mixing bowl sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt; set aside. In small bowl, combine buttermilk, eggs, and butter. Add buttermilk mixture to dry mixture; stir until just combined.
  3. Fill each doughnut indentation with batter, each one about 2/3 full. Bake doughnuts for 8 to 9 minutes or until doughnuts spring back when lightly touched. Remove from oven, and let stand 5 minutes before frosting or tossing in sugar or cinnamon and sugar.

Recipe from Two Chicks from the Sticks

Snick donut

Snickers enjoys her toy donut, too!

Enjoy a donut today with a big glass of milk!