This cow has had two calves within a year

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ANOTHER triumph in stock management. Yesterday ‘No, we don’t expect any of the cows to calve until late January’.

This morning ‘Guess what’s running round the yard?’ You have. A newborn calf.

The other cows are thrilled to bits with the new addition to the herd. All of them have gone into ultra Mumsy mode. A few even considering blogging for Mumsnet no doubt. The actual Mum is as smug as smug could be.

That means she has had two calves within this calendar year. One in January and now in mid December. Mr Bull is even happier. He beat the system and got to his lady when according to our dates, she should not have been available.

With the temperatures rising a trifle, the ice and snow has started to give. John has had no problems so far this week with the drinking troughs freezing over, but from the sound of the weather forecast this will not last long.

Shooting days have fallen off as a number off shoots that he was invited to have cancelled due to the bad weather.

Shooting etiquette frowns upon shooting in bad weather or when birds are under stress caused by adverse conditions.

This week we had a let day on our own shoot, where a group of guns had a day of shooting, plus being fed by myself and the other wives in the syndicate. The decision had been on/off all day apparently.

I was away from home and decided to shop for my contribution: tomatoes and mushrooms for breakfast, and all the veg for a roast lunch, as I came back. Then John told me it had been cancelled.

I spent the night dreaming up tomato and mushroom pasta sauces and vegetarian bakes.

My other minor domestic crisis has been around a new bathroom installation. John does so many jobs where he gets absolutely filthy that a good shower is a very necessary installation in the farmhouse. A bath is all well and good and nice for a relaxing soak at the end of a hard day.

But a quick shower and change of clothes when for example you have been in the middle of a messy calving, mucking out, clipping, worming, dosing or any one of the innumerable jobs which means you are itching to get clean, is just the job.

Our current shower is more of a dribble than anything else, so we are having the full drench, power shower, wet room jobbie installed.

We became a little irritated when the job kept being put back and back.

Then the snow stopped things all together as all the new parts could not be delivered. We have done our part getting the tiles up off the floor and around the existing shower as requested.

Yesterday they asked if they could leave things until after Christmas.

But to end with. Good news. John has just walked back in from checking the herd. It’s just after six in the morning and... another new calf.