At just past 3 AM the world was quiet. I didn't even feel the sharp chill of the 15 degree morning as I scampered to my truck. It took me a solid 15 minutes before I saw another car on the road, but it's mornings like this that I love. It's the same quietness at 5 A.M. on the farm and the same still on Sundays when I used to walk to 8 AM mass when I lived in Chicago.
But why in the hell was I awake at 3 AM on Christmas morning? No, I was not stalking Santa or late night snacking....
I thought is this real?
And then I just couldn't stop myself from being incredibly excited...like as excited as the women on Oprah that one episode where she gave everyone a new car...minus the screaming and crying.
The only catch: I had to wake up at 2:45 A.M.
Milking started at 4:30 so I wanted to have enough time to wake up, layer on clothes, and eat a little something before heading out the door...not to mention the farm is almost an hour from my house.
I didn't even need an alarm clock. I woke up a 2:30 and was practically bouncing off the walls. You see, I love cows. I am obsessed with cows. I just think they are not only beautiful, they are so lovable. Who doesn't love cow kisses?
My obsession with them stems from my years in 4-H. I had sheep and asked (it was really begging) my parents for a cow. My wish was not granted and since I don't believe in the word "No" I will have cows one day...mark my words!
So this just might have been the best Christmas morning of my life. I pulled into the dairy shortly before the owners and staff. I jumped out of my truck as soon as everyone arrived and said, "I got your email and I'm here to milk cows!" At first I think everyone thought I was nuts...just clinically insane!
They let me help in the milking process and could not have been more wonderful and welcoming. After years of working with sheep and horses I felt pretty at home in the barn.
Let me take a moment to talk about the barn...particularly the smell. I love the smell of a barn. Growing up I spent almost every waking moment in the barn so it's a comfort smell...a sweet smell. I know that may sound odd considering most people are repulsed by even a slight smell of manure but it's much more than that...it's the smell of sweet hay and feed, paired with new born babies, and crisp countryside air.
I am still "high" from milking cows...just tickled. I am so thankful I got to spend Christmas morning with cows!
Fulper Farms has some very loved cows and great dairy products as I've mentioned in a previous post. Their ricotta cheese is perfection! So the next time you need yogurt, mozzarella, or ricotta look them up and support your local dairy farm!