This past long weekend, we spent our time as a family working on replacing our corrals for our winter housing and feeding area for our mama cows. Our original fences are over 30 years old and the time for them to be replaced has come.
Corrals are a key part of our farm. Our cows calve out in February until April, so we need to have the facilities to house and feed the ladies close to home during this time. We have a number of pens and we group the cows according to when the calve and some special needs: older cows and first time calvers. Once the cows have calved, they spend some time close to the barns until the babies are older and robust enough to be in our winter feeding grounds where we have bedding and wind breaks, but it is less sheltered.
We break down our farm projects into parts that are family friendly and parts that are not safe for kids. For this project, the kids helped out cleaning up the pulled down lumber and respective wire, metal that came with it. Having them feel like they have an important job is key. They feel like they are an important part of the team and learn responsibility. In the end, they got a fun job too- picking grasses and weeds for a bouquet and we identified them as the picked. So we tossed in a biology lesson as well! When comes to heavy machinery and such, we keep the kids away. Usually, by the time lunch needs to made and naps are coming up right after, so the kids and I are back at the house.
What are your thoughts on having kids help on the farm?