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Summer Bucket List Update: Visit a Dairy Farm

Moo Moo Milkshakes and a visit to the Foster Dairy Farm at www.dineanddish.netMoo Moo Shakes… sounds like some kind of new dance move, doesn’t? Bye bye Harlem Shuffle… let’s all do the Moo Moo Shake!

The Moo Moo Shake isn’t the next dance craze. It is, however, a delicious fruity tasting milkshake creation which is a favorite of Lynda Foster, a dairy farm owner/operator my kids and I had the pleasure of spending a morning with earlier this summer.

CowThanks to my partnership with The Midwest Dairy Association, the kids and I were able to strike “Visit a Dairy Farm” off of our 2013 summer bucket list.

We woke up, not so bright eyed and busy tailed, at 5:30am to head to Fort Scott Kansas, home of Foster Dairy. We made it to Foster Dairy in time for the final milking at 8:30am. At that point, the Foster’s had already been up and milking since 4:30am. My kids knew right then and there not to complain about being tired! 

TractorI always have this romantic notion of what farm life would be like. The reality looks something like this…

One of the most unique things about living and working on a dairy farm is that the chores have to be done 365 days a year, morning and night, rain, snow, sleet, shine or sick or vacation or wedding or funeral.  Cows don’t take a break and need to be fed and milked EVERY DAY!

At Foster Dairy, our milking starts at 4:30 am and usually lasts until 8 or 8:30am.  We milk again for the second time at 4:00 pm.  With the 115 cows we’re currently milking twice a day, we’re sending about 8,000 pounds of milk every day.  That is equivalent to producing about 930 gallons of milk every day.  We take pride in being able to provide a quality wholesome product to help feed the world.” – Foster Dairy

I don’t know about you, but I’m exhausted just thinking about the hard work that goes into bringing quality milk to our table. And that’s not all! At Foster Dairy, they grow a lot of the feed for their cows too, so not only do they have feeding and milking to take care of, they are in the fields planting and harvesting crops all day long.

Cotton-Seeds

“We put out fresh feed to our cows twice a day, but it is important that our cows have access to feed 24 hours a day.  This allows them to rest when they want, drink as much water as they want and eat as they please.  Our goal is to feed a total mixed ration (TMR) so that whenever they take a bite, they are getting a perfect blend of vitamins, minerals and protein in a perfectly configured blend of feed ingredients.  These ingredients include:  Alfalfa hay, corn silage, whole cottonseed, corn gluten pellets, soybean meal, corn and mineral.” – Foster Dairy

The thought process and science that goes into determining how much to feed the cows, how much of each component goes into their feed, etc. was so interesting to see first hand.

Ella-touching-cows

We toured the farm, got to see the cows being milked and fed and had some fun of our own feeding the baby calves. My kids are still talking about feeding the baby calves and how one “silly calf” jumped the fence to get out and have fun with us!

Kids-Feeding-Calves

 

Our visit to Foster Dairy brought more than just an educational experience… I felt an immediate connection with the Foster’s and my kids became instant friends with their grandkids and keep talking about our “next playdate on the farm”. What a fun and memorable experience.

Snack-at-endA special thanks to the entire Foster Family for hosting us “city kids” on the dairy farm! Thanks to Rachel for your patience when showing my kids how to feed the baby calves too. Thanks to Midwest Dairy Association for bringing it all together and making it happen. Special memories were definitely made.

This post was written earlier in the week to be published today. Since the day I wrote it, the Foster Dairy family has faced heartache when the 16 year old daughter of Rachel, their long time employee, was killed in a tragic car accident on the way home from helping her mom milk cows. My heartfelt condolences go out to them all. As always, hug those you love a little tighter tonight and please pray that peace and comfort falls over Rachel and the Fosters. Thank you.  

Moo Moo Shake Recipe Dine & Dish

Moo Moo Shakes

Moo Moo Shakes

A fun and refreshing variation on a traditional milkshake.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Kool-Aid powdered drink mix, any flavor
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 8-10 ounces milk
  • 2 scoops vanilla ice cream

Instructions

  1. Combine Kool-Aid powder and sugar in a re-sealable bowl.
  2. For each Moo Moo Shake:
  3. Place 2 tablespoons Kool-Aid/sugar mixture, milk and vanilla ice cream into a blender. Blend until smooth.
  4. Pour into a clear malt glass with a straw and serve.
  5. Reserve leftover Kool-Aid powder and sugar mixture for future use.
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Disclosure: I am  honored to be a compensated brand ambassador for the Midwest Dairy Association. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Comments

  1. My heart is breaking for this family. Your post is a beautiful tribute to Rachel. We are visiting a local dairy farm tomorrow here in Michigan. We will be thinking of Rachel during our visit.

  2. What a beautiful tribute to Rachel. I am heartbroken for them.

  3. Oh how heartbreaking. Keeping that family in my prayers for strength and healing.

  4. I am glad you posted this wonderful recap of your visit to the farm- it looks like a wonderfully run place and I’m so glad your kids got to experience that.

    Sending lots of prayers to Rachel and her family during this painful time…

  5. Beautiful post. My payers are with Rachels family.

  6. This is so heartfelt and a beautiful tribute to the farm and the family. Not only will I keep the Foster family in my prayers but you as well. I know how hard it was for you to post this today. It’s absolutely beautiful! Big hugs to you. xoxo

  7. What a beautiful post! I get chills and tear up when I hear about people dying in a tragic accident. Life is too short. So happy you went through with the post.

  8. Pat Wogan says:

    Do you remember when we lived at the white house with the beautiful barn that Dad and I bottle fed 16 baby calves? They can get quite aggressive when they emptied the bottle. I know you helped us some in doing that. I, too, had a romanticized view of farm life. The time we spent on that little acreage soon cured me of that.

  9. How heartbreaking for the Fosters, there are no words. No parent should ever bury a child, it really is the definition of unnatural.
    Beautiful post.

  10. my heart is aching for all of them ;( I hope they find peace.

    What a beautiful post Kristen………love the Moo Moo shake!

  11. My goodness … what a lovely post, but heartbreaking too. I’ll be praying for them.

  12. Wonderful post. Definitely keeping Rachel’s family in my prayers.

  13. What an amazing time. And I agree with the others, beautifully written Also, did you know I was born and raised in Fort Scott?

  14. Urban Wife says:

    So heartbreaking for Rachel and her family. I will be praying for them.
    The shakes sound delicious. :)

  15. A beautiful post for Rachel and her family. My thoughts are with them during their bereavement.

  16. What a wonderful experience! I’m so sorry to hear about Rachel and am thinking about the Fosters!

  17. I found your website via How Sweet Eats. She posted it for the milkshake, but I’m loving it for your support of the dairy industry and agriculture as a whole. I grew up a farm kid and work in the agriculture industry today. Thank you for being an advocate and being willing to experience something new to find out where your food comes from. Thank you to teaching that lesson to your children!

  18. How fun!!!

  19. Midwest Dairy Association™ represents more than 9,500 dairy farm families to nearly 38 million consumers across 10 Midwestern states including Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. They work on behalf of dairy farmers to increase dairy sales, foster innovation and inspire consumer confidence in dairy products and practices. Midwest Dairy Council, an affiliate of National Dairy Council, is the nutrition education division of Midwest Dairy Association. The Council is dedicated to dairy nutrition research and education through the investment of more than 9,500 dairy farm families across 10 Midwestern states, and is committed to child health and wellness through our collaborative program, Fuel Up to Play 60.

  20. I think I had Kool-Aid once, but would definitely try this. What a great day on a farm with the family!

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