My son doesn’t drink! Period!

Being the mother of a son that chooses to NOT drink alcohol has been one of the toughest things for me as a mother. It makes my heart want to explode with pride one minute and it also rips my heart in half the very next minute.

My 19-year-old son has made a very conscious decision to abstain from ever drinking booze. I never had the balls to say, “No!” That’s why I wound up drinking like a fish from the time I was 14 until I turned 23, when I entered a 30-day treatment facility.

I couldn’t be more proud of my son. I know how hard it is for him to “say no.” I know other kids make fun of my son for not partaking in drinking.

One mother I know said her child said, “What’s Joey going to do with us? Sit and watch us drink?”

Well, yeah he is going to sit and shoot the breeze, just not drink.

Because of his choice, he has become somewhat of an outcast in our teenage society.

I just wish other people would respect him for his choice.

I don’t know how many times I have told people that my son does not drink, only to hear, “Well, that’s what he’s telling you.”

Well to all you doubters out there – “I believe him with my whole heart and soul!”

Does this make him a bad person? In my eyes, it makes him one of the strongest people I know.

He has good reason for choosing to abstain from alcohol. I am a recovering alcoholic and another family member is an active alcoholic. I have been nothing but honest with both my sons about what alcoholism has done to me and my family. They see first hand how family members with addictions affect the entire extended family.

It absolutely tears my heart apart that, because he is making a smart, difficult decision, society chastises him.

As a mother, I couldn’t ask for a more wonderful, caring son. He is patient, kind and hard-working. Isn’t that what every mother wishes?

That wish came true for me, but my son is a social outcast. It’s so hard to explain. I am so proud because he chooses not to drink, and has stood up to peer pressure. But it’s also so difficult to see him be chastised for that very decision. Sometimes I feel like telling him to drink, just so he would fit it. That’s AWFUL!

It seems to me that it’s acceptable for teenagers to drink. I know parents that provide the booze and the place. In my eyes, that is just wrong!

Isn’t it time that it’s acceptable for teenagers to not drink.

And if there are any other mothers that have any advice on how to handle my emotions, I would love to hear from you.



It really is winter out there!

Once again the farm is getting blanketed with the soft-white-fluffy-stuff.

I have always thought snow made the world a beautiful place.

Not that I like working in it all that much, but it sure changes the scenery.

That is one of the best aspects of living here on a dairy farm. Every day I get to look out one of my many windows and see all different types of things.

The other day a pheasant was just outside my kitchen window looking for corn to eat. This is highly unusual as we have to Rat Terriers, Eddie and Digger, that think chasing a pheasant is an Olympic sport. Because it was cold, both dogs were curled up on their bed in the milk house. That’s a no-no by the way, it’s against our inspector’s wishes, but hey, it’s really cold outside.

I have also seen evidence of a bunny taking up space in our calving barn. At this time there are four momma cows waiting in there to have their babies. What’s the big deal if a bunny stops in occasionally to fill its belly with a bit of dry hay.

He needs to eat too.

Speaking of eating. Our cows manage fairly well in the cold weather. They do drop off in milk production, but that’s only because they have to use more energy to keep their body temperature in line. Seriously, I can walk into the barn to bring them down to the parlor for morning milking and they look like they are as content as content can be – even if they are covered in frost.

One nice thing about the cold weather – as soon as they cows step outside the barn and realize how cold it is, they run to the milking parlor and I don’t have to struggle to get them into the holding area. They know it will be about 10 degrees warmer in the buildings than it is outside.

Working in these winter conditions toughens a person’s soul. Sure I like to get dressed up and looking like a woman, but working in negative weather conditions makes me feel like I could handle anything. I can even handle looking like a frump in my tan Carhart coveralls.



There’s an old saying in the dairy world – “Once you quit milking cows, you still get up at the same time you did when you milked.’

This must be true.

It’s my Saturday morning off, and I was up at 5 a.m.

I am not complaining. I had a boat load of things that I needed to get done – mostly laundry.

I hate doing laundry.

Mostly I hate folding the clothes.

Getting up early will help with our hectic day today anyway. We have to attend the crowning of the Brown County Dairy Princess Banquet at noon. Then we have to attend Bingo at 2 p.m. I feel like there is something going on tonight, but I can’t put my finger on it.

In my usual fashion, I will just wing it throughout the day.

We will see where we end up.

Minnesota Winters on a Minnesota Dairy Farm

We all like to complain and we all like to brag.

When it comes to living in the Winter Wonderland we call Minnesota, we like to do both excessively. Living and working on a dairy farm gives my double the capacity.

We dairy farmers like to complain when it’s hot. We like to complain when it’s cold.

Right now it’s really, really cold. It’s so cold that throwing a cup of boiling water into the air, doesn’t make it vaporize; we have to watch for falling ice chunks in the shape of a coffee mug.

Just kidding. The water doesn’t fall in ice cubes.

Winter does make it a bit more challenging to get some things done. The difference between the air temperature in the milking parlor and the air temperature in the cow-holding area create clouds.

Water hoses freeze.

Cows don’t  want to leave the tepid temperature in the milking parlor to go outside into the freezing temperature. They crap more in the milking parlor, which means our clothing looks like it’s polka dotted.

We enjoy milking cows. Milking in Minnesota makes us tougher.

It gives us a reason to brag.