What I Know About Cows

We are fairly new at this business of raising cattle and even though I have a cattle background I don’t feel that I know much.  My husband, being a retired Engineer, is a book learner.  He loves to read, learn and soak it up.  I’m more of an emotional learner.  So, I just learn by what I observe when I’m around the cows.  They’ve taught me a whole lot.



. Continue reading

  1. Jordan says:

    Beautiful pictures! Those calves look so happy with their mothers.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Jordan, Yes, they are so very happy with their Mommas. I think I could write a book about the momma/baby interaction I’ve observed. It is so precious. – Dori –

  2. Joan says:

    Oh yes!!! calves, is there anything sweeter – well guess all babies are the best but calves!!! Love your information, sounds like you are off to a great start being a cattle rancher. You didn’t say what you are crocheting, I’m a sitter like that too – something to keep my hands busy makes my mind work better. God bless.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Joan, Definitely those little human babies are the cutest thing EVER… but calves? They are a close second! I think I’m always amazed at how they are born, within minutes they are up and nursing, within hours they are walking all over the place, the next day they are running! It’s such a miracle to witness. – Dori –

      P.S. What am I crocheting? WELL… this is the thing. I learned some basic crochet when I was a little girl and haven’t done it since. So I recently began teaching myself with YouTube videos (a great way to learn I think!) and I’ve been making dish cloths and pot holders. The easiest thing right? 🙂

  3. Maureen says:

    Oh Dori, you made me cry. I love cows too. They say so much with their eyes! Isn’t it wonderful how much you can learn, just by observation alone? Now you’ll know the technical stuff too, but I think you’re doing just fine without it. Congratulations!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Maureen, I wrote this blog post a few days ago and had it scheduled to publish this morning.. but last night our class was AMAZING. I think I could’ve written an entire blog post just on what I learned last night. And so I’m feeling pretty good about the technical stuff!! Until I forget it, that is. Thanks for crying along with me… those cows and calves will do it to me every time! – Dori –

  4. Kim says:

    I got choked up when you described the momma losing one of her twins. How heart-wrenching to witness that. I know they’re just animals, but God put something in my heart that is touched by their personalities, instincts and innocence. I know He put it there for others as well…including you.:) My husband and I have a tiny little farm (3 sheep, 5 chickens, and occasional pigs in the spring/summer…also gardens), but we’ve had the pleasure of taking care of a friend’s steers this week because he’s on a trip. For the first time, I’ve experienced bottle feeding a calf. I love it!…even when it’s 21 degrees below zero! I’ve also made a friend in one of the other young steers who cautiously approaches me and has finally let me pet him. (I’m very cautious too…they are so big!) I wasn’t raised on a farm, but there is just something in me that loves it and wants more. Blessings to you Dori.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kim, You are right – God certainly puts something in us that makes us love our animals… compassion certainly, but even more than that. I’ve worried about my cows sometimes to the point I have to physically separate myself from them to stop worrying! I love bottle feeding those babies – even in the bitterly cold weather that bottle of milk that is warm to your fingers can really warm your heart! Your friends are lucky to have you help them out. That farmgirl spirit is also a heart thing; doesn’t matter how we were raised or where we live. Thanks for taking the time to write! – Dori –

  5. Meredith Williams says:

    Thank you Dori, your post was very well timed! Our power went off last night and by morning all our cows had no water. With the help of several generators we are back in business but all morning I’ve been thinking……why do we do this?! We run about 125 Herefords and you have reminded me why. Thank you!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Meridith, Oh the work in the freezing cold weather. Our cows water from our pond and with our extreme icy conditions the last week we’ve been breaking ice. They are actually pretty good about breaking it themselves, but because I’m a bit of a worrier, I like to break it too! 🙂 125 Herefords… BIG job! – Dori –

  6. Maria Reyes says:

    Absolutely an amazing post. Made me feel bad in a way, everytime I look at a steak well I will have second thoughts. Maria

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Maria, I’ve had so many people ask how we can eat our own beef after being attached to them and raising them. It is not easy to take them to market; my husband has been known to shed a tear (I leave the farm the day he takes them to market). BUT, I honestly feel it is the circle of life and we raise our beef giving them the very, very best life imaginable. And when you raise steers (the ones that are harvested for meat) there comes a time when that is what raising them is all about. So, yes it is hard. BUT, the flip side of it is this: when you raise your own meat I think the quality is so incredible because of the care you’ve put into that animal that you feel very good about the food that it provided. Does any of that make sense? I was also raised this way, so that helps too! From a very young age I understood the purpose. I notice that my little grand-girls are beginning to understand that too. The hard part of being a Farmgirl I guess. Thanks for reading, writing, and bringing out this side of it. – Dori –

  7. Dori, that is such a good post and Yes they are special. I don’t have one (wish I did) I have seen pictures such as yours and they make me smile. I lived on a farm when growing up, My father worked there and I got to know a lot about farming. Not an expert mine you learn to love it. Keep the post coming and Hugs to you and the herd. farm sister #1020 Juanita

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Juanita, Don’t you love it when pictures make you smile? Glad that mine could do that for you. And the next best thing to having your own cows is loving someone else’s! I went down to check our herd and gave them your greetings! – Dori –

  8. Robin Reichardt says:

    Here is my “circle of life ” story. I started helping out my elderly father 15 years ago with his cow/calf farm. We lost the momma (even after vet came out twice) to a set of twins-one heifer, one bull. Dad and I were bottle feeding them and had them in an enclosed lot. While we were out checking on his other cows on leased pastures a pack of wild dogs got in the lot–no protective momma cow anymore–and chased and killed the smaller weaker heifer, but the bull calf survived the attack. We loaded him up and went to the vet and came back with salves and medicines to apply to the wounds to try and save him. When we got back to Dad’s the wild dogs were back! They wanted to finish what they’d started! So we took the calf to my place and “hid” him in the barn. So he got a sponge bath daily and salves were applied to his many wounds, and of course the bottle feeding continued. During this time a cow lost a calf, and we were able to get her up to barn and “forced” her into letting this calf nurse her. With-in about a week she had “adopted” this bull calf! She raised a real nice calf!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Robin, These are the circle of life stories that are so sad. BUT, then these are also the stories that are so awesome because it tells the heart of the farmer. We will do anything to save our animals, won’t we? It made me sad, but happy too. I also love the way that a Momma cow will adopt another calf and what a very sweet way to mend a broken heart. I loved your story – thank you so much for sharing! – Dori –

  9. Hi Dori,
    Every time I read your posts I giggle, because we have much in common. I’d be right there knitting and crocheting along with ya! I don’t have cows, but I LOVE them. Growing up in Texas, my dad’s ranch was a weekend getaway for us, so we didn’t have cows, but the ranch next door did and many of the other ranch owners near us did as well. I love their sweet eyes and big noses, love to watch them graze, and when we go to county fairs, guess where you will find me first? Yep, the cattle shows. I crossed a line off my bucket list when my farmgirl sisterhood chapter and I took a class at a farm and we all learned (among other things) how to milk a cow by hand. I started collecting cow memorabilia in high school. I had to stop and tell people I didn’t collect it anymore because some it got to be crazy! I kept some of my most favorite cow themed pieces. Lucky you, with your beautiful herd! Enjoy! Farmgirl Hugs, Nicole (Suburban Farmgirl)

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Nicole, I think that is so true about collecting things… it can get rather crazy with the things people will give us. Which is fun, but hilarious too! 🙂 I don’t think I’ve ever collected cow memorabilia BUT I do love some of my cow photography and am working on getting some of it enlarged and on canvases for my living room. I grew up with a milk cow and milking was something my brothers did… I think I milked maybe just few times. My daughter and I want a milk cow in the worst way, but we also don’t want to be tied down to the daily milking. That’s not really the true farmgirl spirit is it?! 🙂 I love the cows, love the farm but WOW do I love my warm house! Ha ha! Hugs back – Dori-

  10. Vivian says:

    Oh yes I love calves and their mommas! I raise miniature cows and it is interesting how each momma introduces her calves to the world.. One momma lost her calf and the rest nominated her for babysitting duty. It was a joy to see as she was very sick and lonesome after her calf left this world. She was a good babysitter and wouldn’t let anyone even the chickens near the calves. It was so funny watching her chase the chickens away! If anyone is interested in cows but are afraid of their bigness I suggest miniature cows. They are less scary and super sweet!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Vivian, I haven’t been around miniature cows and I would LOVE to. I’m thinking I would love to have a few. But then we would need a miniature bull, etc… right? Our bull would be too big. I love your story of the Momma taking on the babysitting duty of the other calves and keeping everything of danger away (even the chickens! Ha Ha!). What are your breed of miniature cattle? Thanks for sharing! – Dori –

  11. bernie kemp says:

    Love the pictures!

  12. Betty Benesi says:

    Dori: I have a terrible time with parting with any animal I that I live with. I hesitate to say own because I believe we are more in the nature of custodians. In any case, obviously the cows are raised to sell for beef, but how can you possibly part with them after you know them? I don’t think I could do it. I am a person who has rescued baby birds out of the cat’s mouth. I tend to anthropomorphize sp? I admire your efforts!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Betty, That question comes up a lot (even between my husband and I) and it is a hard one to answer. It probably deserves an entire blog post all on its own! I will copy and paste here the answer that I gave to another reader this morning:

      “I’ve had so many people ask how we can eat our own beef after being attached to them and raising them. It is not easy to take them to market; my husband has been known to shed a tear (I leave the farm the day he takes them to market). BUT, I honestly feel it is the circle of life and we raise our beef giving them the very, very best life imaginable. And when you raise steers (the ones that are harvested for meat) there comes a time when that is what raising them is all about. So, yes it is hard. BUT, the flip side of it is this: when you raise your own meat I think the quality is so incredible because of the care you’ve put into that animal that you feel very good about the food that it provided. Does any of that make sense? I was also raised this way, so that helps too! From a very young age I understood the purpose. I notice that my little grand-girls are beginning to understand that too. The hard part of being a Farmgirl I guess.”

      So, yes Betty, it is VERY hard. One day I cried about one of my favorite steers that my husband took to market and that is when my husband admitted to me that it is the hardest thing about raising cattle for him also. It helped me accept it a little better, knowing that it IS part of being a cattle farmer/rancher. I have also heard people say they don’t name them, get close to them, or get to know their personalities because then they become pets. I haven’t experienced that for myself… I actually do better if I know that I’ve put 100% into them both physically and emotionally. We all deal with it in different ways. It is hard regardless. Thanks for asking though! – Dori –

      P.S. I rescue birds out of cat’s mouths too! 🙂

  13. Bonnie Ellis says:

    I have to tell you a funny story. My cousin raises beef cattle and has never raised a calf. He and his grown son do the farm together. One time they bought several cattle and 3 of them turned out to be cows. They gave birth and his son had to look on the internet to see how to get the calf to drink. I thought I would die laughing. Just goes to show he who farms does not know everything.

  14. Patricia says:

    My husband and I have a small herd, and those calves really do grow fast. I think it’s amazing that cows can have such different personalities. Some of the cows are standoffish, some are very friendly, and some get so excited to see you they will nearly run you over! We have 3 that we raised on the bottle, and those are extra special to me. You can really form a bond with them, and us humans can become awfully protective of our calves too! They are wonderful animals to have.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Patricia, They ARE wonderful animals to have. I think they are almost human-like in their personalities, don’t you? Kind of like how some of us are introverts and some of us are outgoing and friendlier, etc! Those bottle calves become our babies for sure. Thanks for writing! – Dori –

  15. kim says:

    Oh my goodness Dori, I cried a bucket reading this post – thank you for sharing your emotional knowledge. Glad your getting the book smarts, but oh how nice to have the two to go hand in hand. Awesome for you and your cow family.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kim, I’m thankful that the book stuff and the emotional stuff CAN go hand in hand. What a sad farmer we would be if we didn’t have a bit of both, right? (Even though I do lean pretty far on the emotional side! Ha Ha!) Thanks for writing, Kim. – Dori –

  16. Sherlene Williams says:

    I am so glad that I am not the only one that loves cows. I had a great teacher, if only I had really listened. That “I know it all” attitude has been gone for awhile now. I go out everyday, walk through them, stopping to talk to them and checking to see which I think is going to calve next. There is Sweetums, Sassy, Opal, PeeWee, Cutie and Chia with all of her curls. All have their names, and even with them being all black I can tell who is who. I have sat in the tank holding up a cows head to keep her from drowning until Wilson could get there with the pickup and ropes to drag her out, lanced swollen up balls on their face and injected iodine to get rid of infection from lump jaw, even had a cow die while in labor and we cut her open to save the calf. His name was Charlie, born on my birthday. The hardest thing for me is to sell an old cow. Born and raised on the ranch, knowing nothing else, I worry about them being mistreated. Wilson finally told me he would not take me to the auction again if I cried. Hhmm, I thought I was being very discreet. Each has their own personality like Sassy the dancer. Sassy climbed into every feeder we had and bounced around in it until it was totally demolished. Anyway my husband has told me I was weird when it came to my cows, but some of that weirdness is in him too. Love your stories Dorie, look for them everyday.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dear Sherlene – You DEFINITELY had a great teacher. I remember many times when I was growing up I would hear Mom and Dad talking over some cattle issue and Mom would say, “I’ll call Averil, she’ll know”!!! 🙂 And she always did didn’t she? I have learned there is NO TOUGHER farmgirl than the ones ranching out West – more land to care for, harsher conditions, more cattle, etc.. And my Mom is right up there with the best of them, as was my Grandmother and yours (and now you!). Loved your stories, Sherlene. Thanks for writing! Hugs – Dori –

  17. Kristy says:

    This week I met a woman whose husband and brother-in-law are raising bison here in northwest Indiana. I was wowed. I plan on going to see them this summer, when they welcome the public on Saturdays.

    I’m not really into cattle or bison, but people who are, always speak of them with love and respect.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kristy, it would be fascinating to learn more about the Bison. I have never been around them – only seen them from a distance really. I have eaten a Bison Burger before and it was quite delicious! – Dori –

  18. susana says:

    Dear Dori, I believe all animals have the heart for… Humans….its built in them by their designer…I feel being close to animals is as close as we can see G*ds love and heart in creation….that he truly does have a heart and cares…I think its beautiful!

    I love how you have to keep your hands busy and bring your crocheting with you to the class ( you sound like me, I take my
    crochet with me to, when I’m away from home, hate/wasting
    time sitting some where). I think its so sad how cows mourn
    their loss of a baby. And that it comes to you and lays its head
    on your Lap. Do you tell them you miss their baby too? And tell
    them they can have another or just cry with them?my heart
    goes out to animals. Sometimes all you can understand from
    them is their emotions. ( I can tell when my dog us is angry with me ir afraid, she shows her emotions,,and the faces she makes and thrust out at me tells a lot! Animals are smarter than
    people give them credit for. I think you will be a Grand Master at
    whatever you do…,you have a big heart! Hugs Susana

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Susana, I used to think it was horrible that cows mourn their babies and then I decided I love it. It means they have a heart to love and have compassion, so therefore it means they have the ability to love and care for us too! 🙂 I think I would be more sad if they didn’t mourn the loss of a calf. And YES, the Momma that lost her calf and came to me for comfort, I definitely talked to her about her baby. Yes, animals are way smarter than we give them credit for! Thanks for writing – Dori –

  19. Brenda Towsley says:

    I just want to reach through my computer screen and run my hand down one of those beautiful faces! And the story of the mother cows sadness from losing one of her calves caused me to sigh and almost cry myself. Thank you for sharing what your everyday life has taught you about cows and such lovely pictures.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Brenda, I think photography should make us want to reach through our computer screen, so that was a huge compliment to me! (And to those darling calves!) Thank you for writing! – Dori –

  20. Denise Ross says:

    You have a balanced approach to learning. I love it. It’s the best way to approach life too.
    Blessings from Australia

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Denise, thank you. And I hadn’t thought about it, but you are right. Balance is so important in every aspect of our lives, isn’t it? Happy Summer to you all over there in Australia! (Or are you approaching Fall?) – Dori –

  21. Kathleen Lussier says:

    This is great blog and awesome pictures. Would you mind if I tried to paint some of your cows just for myself? Sincerely

  22. I too live on a farm in south western Mn. We also raise cattle….Limousine and Angus cross. They are such docile animals for the most part. Just the other day we lost a calf. Momma was a first calf heifer and altho hubby was keeping an eye on the Mom he still called the vet as he knew he had done everything he could by himself. Even tho the vet was called.. his fee was nominal compared to the loss of the calf. I had been posting on Facebook and there were so many people saying how sorry they were we loss the calf. Happy to report Mother is doing fine and has rejoined her sister cows. Life on the farm has it’s ups and downs…and lots of work…but we love our lives and that will never change .

  23. Look forward to my Mary Jane magazine coming in the mail. Always something to share with all the sisters!

  24. Marilyn Godfrey says:

    During the time we were milking cows, I also learned a lot. One of the most interesting things was when we moved the new mama and her newborn from the maternity pen back into the herd, all of the other cows would gather round to oooh and ahhh over the newest member of the herd. Just like humans do. We also had a cow who never had a baby who survived. I cried as I watched her fight the buzzards who were trying to get to her just born, dead baby lying on the tank dam. She wanted a baby so badly that each and every time a newborn was introduced to the herd she would work her way through the group of admirers, and gently talk to the new babies. One day she had three who began to follow her, until their mom’s realized what was going on and raised their voices in protest. Animal behavior is often much like human behavior.

  25. Meg Higgins says:

    Such beautiful pictures, and your feelings about your cows echo my own feelings. We raise little Irish Dexter cattle here in Central Illinois and I look forward to calving season every year. Thank you for sharing your precious cows with all of us.

    • Dori Troutman says:


      There is just something about cows that is almost human-like isn’t there? I do love them.

      Thanks for writing!

      – Dori –

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The Story Of A Farm

Today I’d like to tell you the story of our farm. As I’ve been pondering this blog post, I keep thinking I need to leave out the beginning of the story, as it is very personal, but it’s a big part of how we came to the place of buying our farm so I can’t really leave it out.



The entrance to our farm


Continue reading

  1. Nancy says:

    Beautiful! Hubby and I moved from CA to Tennessee almost 10 years ago and still love it. We aren’t on a farm but our little half acre feels like it compared to what we had back home!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Nancy, I think one of the biggest differences to me after moving from out West is what you can do with so little land here in the South. A half acre here is just fabulous! The yard, garden, etc… that you can have that where we came from in Utah it just wouldn’t have gone very far. I think the same is somewhat true for California also. Thanks for writing! – Dori –

  2. Beautiful story Dori, I loved your story and I wish you and your family the best. Yes I live in Virginia and I have 2/3 acre and I love every inch of it. I live in a town now, where the rules are different. When Charlie and I got married, I moved to his house and I love being with my Husband. I didn’t sell my little house in the country and maybe we can go back someday this is my dream anyway. That is my story in short form, much more to it, but that can wait. Hugs from your farm sister Juanita Massey

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Juanita, I think it is wonderful that you still have your little house in the country… kind of a like a retreat place! 🙂 And definitely a dream to look to – we all need one, don’t we? I want to hear more of your story! – Dori –

  3. Sandy says:

    I love your story. Thanks for sharing it

  4. Cindy says:

    Such a heartwarming story! Our dream too was to have a farm someday! We bought our 26acre farm 10 years ago outside of Boise ,Idaho ! We stayed in Ren ,Nevada area for the10 year period raising our grandson since birth! We had to stay in the Sparks area do to my husbands job and our Grandsons Dad! Well ! A year and a half ago our grandson graduated from high school! Yeeeehaaaw! We built that farmhouse! Front country porch and all! And are living the dream! My husband also semi retired! Able to do his health ins business out of the house and now we are getting ready to plant alphalfa ! We planted our first garden last year! Planted a fruit orchard! Got some goats! An adopted cat and already had 4 dogs! My lifelong dream of having a horse and a big red barn are in the process this year! Oh thanks to God for all these blessings! Who knew we could be farmers! Ha! Love it! The shabby country cute chicken coop is also in process! Whoooohooo! Boy patience and perserverience ! Right! So glad you are doing well! Love your site!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Cindy, oh I just love your story. I love to think of you raising your grandson, with a dream in the future. And now you’ve go it… and he’ll have a special place to come home to right? 🙂 And WOW, you have accomplished a lot in a year and a half! We have moved a little slower! 🙂 Isn’t gardening just the greatest? And planting alphafa… and an orchard… and animals! Well, I guess just farm-life in general is the best! Thanks for writing! – Dori –

      P.S. I want to see a picture of your shabby country cute chicken coop! Email it to me when you’re finished!

  5. Becky West says:

    Loved the story. Thanks for sharing.

  6. susan says:

    Ours will be a family farm that we will inherit and my dream is to build a house with a big front porch, a place we can look out on the pasture at the cows, horses and goats with our chickens clucking and the rooster crowing. Just a few more years, I hope. Better be, life is clicking on by.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Susan, Life certainly has a way of clicking by. Sadly. The best thing about our house is our front porch, so I agree with you… porches on a farm are the best! We laugh because all spring, summer, fall when the weather is perfect for porch sitting our cows come up to the hilltop every evening and we watch them and talk to them. In the winter when it is too cold for porch sitting, the cows never come up. It’s like they know! (In reality, it is cold on the hilltop so they prefer to stay down below in the winter time!) Thanks for reading. – Dori –

  7. Judy says:

    Beautiful, inspirational story! Congratulations on all accounts!

  8. Debbie says:

    Hi Dori!
    I love the story of your farm. It is wrapped in miracles and dreams come true and hard work too! May you all enjoy many more blessed years together on your farm! I love hearing about every bit of it! Love and hugs, Deb~ the beach farmgirl

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Deb, Oh I love how true that is… our farm being wrapped in miracles and dreams come true. And yes, hard work!! 🙂 Hugs back to you dear friend. – Dori –

  9. Mandi says:

    What a wonder story and beautiful place!

  10. Dori, Praise the Lord for your healing and your health, so glad you are living your dream, what an inspiration for others who may be going through or facing the same or other trials in their lives, the message here, don’t give up trust in the Lord and they too will someday buy the farm of their dreams. Be Blessed. Neta (and I am anxiously awaiting spring and summer as well) 🙂

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Vivian, I think a lesson I learned in it all is how wonderful it IS to have a dream! And yes, don’t give up the fight! And one other lesson I learned… to laugh A LOT! 🙂 Happy (almost) Spring… I saw my daffodils shooting up in the woods yesterday! YAY! – Dori –

  11. My side of the family has been farming for over 160 years in Illinois. For four years my immediate family lived on a 160 acre farm owned by myself and other family members. Unfortunately, we had to move when my husband and I lost our jobs. We moved to Nebraska where we hope to begin hobby farming again. We miss having geese, ducks, and goats –which we had to sell when we moved– but we know that when we buy our next place it will be *ours* and hopefully our last move as well.
    In the meantime we keep looking for property and dreaming of our future home.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Gretchen, I think looking at property and dreaming is one of the best things to do – it helps to keep the eyes forward doesn’t it? I’m wanting ducks… I think we will get some when we finally get our chicken house built. I recently had duck eggs and they were so good. Did you eat the eggs from your ducks? I thought they had a very sweet flavor. I hear they are great for baking with too. Happy property looking!!! 🙂 – Dori –

  12. kim says:

    Dori – what a beautiful story – kinda made me well up a bit. I love it when all the pieces fall into place. My husband and I have lived in our cottage farmhouse for over 20 years and we are just now getting around to putting the farm back into the place – in just a tiny way. Starting with chickens, and then who knows what. Congrats to Jill, lucky lady! Best, Kim

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kim, It is kind of a miracle when you look back at life experiences and see how the pieces were there all along… they just had to fall into place! I will be excited to hear your journey of bringing the farm back into place. Chickens is a great place to start! – Dori –

  13. Cyndie Gray says:

    my dear Dori: I loved hearing your farm story and truly I cannot “picture” you two anywhere but there. So thankful our paths have crossed. So thankful for your way with words, my friend

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Cyndie, dear friend… thank you for always reading and always having the kindest words. Love you hugely. – Dori –

  14. diana henretty says:

    Blessed, blessed, blessed, thats what you are.
    All so lovely with such simplicity!
    Hugs to you, Diana, Noel Mo

  15. bonnie b says:

    Isn’t it funny how you just know when things are right? And it sounds like you didn’t have to look at lots of properties. Was it really the first? Amazing, too, how “good things come to those who wait”. I’m so happy that you and your family are realizing your dreams. You surely deserve it. Continued blessings and happiness to you and yours.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Bonnie, I think listening to our heart is so important because it definitely knows when things are right. We only looked at one piece of property before finding our farm… (if you can even call it that as all we did was walk the pasture) and said, “Nope, this isn’t it”. Even though we didn’t really know what “it” was! The thing I didn’t tell in the story is that we made an offer on our farm and it was refused; the man didn’t even negotiate and the price was too high for us to buy it for the asking price. Even though we were so devastated. So… we just decided the time wasn’t right. Two months later the man called and asked if our offer still stood!!! So we got it for the original offer! So, yes you are right… “good things come to those who wait”! – Dori –

      P.S. The farm we sort of looked at first is just down the road from us and the people that bought it have made it a lovely home, but every time I drive by I’m just thankful we are where we are!

      • bonnie b says:

        Dori, The fact that your offer was not accepted resonates close to home. There have been a couple times in my life when things have just fallen into place and have just felt right. About 25 years ago, we were in a devestating situation. We had to move and needed a place to heal. We found a small cabin on a quiet lake that provided several years of peace and happiness. More recently, my mother-in-law was not able to live alone but not wanting to go to assisted living, so we were looking for a place that would provide both her and my husband and me our own space, but be connected. We found a great fit, but it needed work. We thought about it just long enough for someone else to make an offer which was accepted. :(. We kept looking, but found nothing, only to be called by the realtor a month later. The offer had fallen through! So we got what we needed and worked 3 months on it before moving in. Mom lived there with us for 2 1/2 years in comfort and safety. I truly believe the Lord provides what we need.

        • Dori Troutman says:

          Dear Bonnie, this story makes my heart so happy it’s singing. What a beautiful thing for your mother-in-law and memories that you will cherish. We have so much to be thankful for, don’t we? Hugs to you – Dori –

  16. Reba says:

    Congratulations on being a 10 year cancer survivor AND having your dream come true!! It is also a blessing of how your family moved so close to you! It seems that just as your dream seemed “over” God gave you a whole lot more to be thankful for!! Your place is gorgeous, on all sides/views. TN is a beautiful place… We just sold our home in the city and looking for our dream farm with a log home.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Reba, Thank you – ten years cancer free is such a wonderful feeling! 🙂 Yes, having our kids near us is almost a miracle to me sometimes. Keep me posted on your dream farm. Having a log home would be lovely. What state are you looking? I’d love to know more! – Dori –

  17. Mary peyer says:

    What a wonderful post. Thank you for sharing. I am happy you are cancer free and so happy that you got your farm.
    I always thought one day I would live on a farm. Not so sure anymore, but I won’t give up on hoping and praying for it.
    Stay well and blessed

  18. Dede Blakeney says:

    I agree. An Arizona transplant to Mississippi 15 years ago. And it is so beautiful. So many things to do, and we love it so. Started with chickens, now we are hoping for goats. We have the material to fence, but we haven’t been able to build yet. Don’t think I could ever go back to city living.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dede, where in Arizona did you live and where in Mississippi did you move? I’ve seen a little bit of Mississippi and I love it! I think once you live in the country and love it, moving to the city would be pretty tough! I sure couldn’t do it. – Dori –

  19. Jinx says:

    Loved hearing your happy ending story. Thank you for sharing your lovely family and personal bits.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dear Jinx, Sometimes sharing personal things is so hard to do… but the kindness from genuinely kind readers like yourself make it worth it! Thank you for reading and commenting. – Dori –

  20. Geri Young says:

    Thank you for sharing your story! God bless you and your family. How wonderful you get to live your dream! 🙂

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Geri, thank you so much for reading and for commenting. Sometimes we do stand on our hilltop and say, “Are we really here”? 🙂 – Dori –

  21. Jill says:

    Oh Dori,

    What an inspiring journey. Your home and farm must be all the sweeter, just knowing what you have gone through to be where you are today. Your story gives me hope to keep dreaming of my “someday” farm!! In the meantime, there is no reason why I can’t “farmgirl it up” on the little plot of land I have right now. Thank you for sharing your story. And THANK YOU for the MILK COW KITCHEN book!!!!! I will be watching for the mailman everyday now!!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Jill, I’m glad you are excited about the book. You will LOVE it! And then you can pass it to your daughter to read! It’s on its way! And yes, keep dreaming… your someday farm will mean all the more to you when you get there. – Dori –

  22. Karen(old cowgirl) Montoya says:

    I want to add to the many wishes you have received for being cancer free. I love hearing stories like yours. So heart felt. By building your dream house you know every inch of it by heart. You can touch a wall and know that you put it there. It must be an amazing feeling. No matter the weather you have all you need and you can bundle up and set on your porch and see something every day that you have never seen before. I wish you and your family all the blessings of being in his light. You are the greatest women and do not ever forget it.
    Love to you and blessing to many to mention now.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Kay, Thank you so much for your kind words. You are SO RIGHT on that feeling of building your own house – you really appreciate the work. When we were completely finished and began the process of moving in and hanging pictures, etc… I didn’t even want to hammer a nail as I knew the work that went into the walls! 🙂 It was awhile before I was ready to do that! I have felt so much the need to live simpler and partly why we chose the house plan we did – (more on that in another blog post! Smile!) but the porches were a definite plus! Thank you again for your Farmgirl friendship. – Dori –

  23. Melinda says:

    Congratulations and God Bless on being Cancer Free! Your farm is beautiful! Love the views from your house as I’m sure you do too. I have lived on a farm for over 30 years and there nothing like it that you can compare it to. Keep up the wonderful blogging! Hugs Melinda!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Melinda, Thank you. The cancer free years are racking up now and it is such a comfort! You cannot compare that country living to anything can you? Hugs back, – Dori –

  24. Angela says:

    Beautiful in pictures and in reality! Can’t wait until we can visit again. Our story starts out almost just the opposite – we bought a ready made farm – house, fences, barns, etc. I am jealous of your garden. I want to learn to grow cut flowers!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Angela, starting with a ready made farm sounds just about perfect! There is SO much work starting from scratch. But that has its benefits too. 🙂 Anxious to see you again too. – Dori –

  25. Beverly says:

    Oh Dori…I was so moved by your beautiful post. At times I become discouraged because I want to retire to the country but I don’t think I’ll be able to so. Then I read your beautiful post… your courage and faith during your medical struggles and how you never lost faith that your dreams would come true and it gives me such hope. Bless you and your family always

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dear Beverly, I didn’t write about the discouragements along the way… no one wants to read about those!!! 🙂 We all certainly get discouraged when we see the impossibilities – and there always seem to be so many. Looking forward has been something that comes naturally to me though and I recognize it has seen me through many a discouragement. Don’t ever give up. Ever. Hugs to you – Dori –

  26. Alexandra Wilson says:

    Loved this post, Dori–What a wonderful journey and fulfillment of a huge life goal! I often day dream about that perfect farm in the foothills somewhere, and your story gives me lots of hope and eagerness for when and what that will be for us. And building your own home! You must feel so connected to every corner, stud and detail in your lovely home. Evan and I do build well together…We have dreams of converting a barn to a home one day. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dear Alex, Thank you! Life is such a journey isn’t it? Building our home was the hardest thing we have ever done together… the rewards were tremendous and our marriage survived it! (Smile!) Actually I’m so thankful for the experience as I think we appreciate our home more than imaginable and we also appreciate each other’s strengths more too. I always knew my husband could do anything, but to see him action was very amazing. AND I learned to do things that I never thought I could do! I think you and Evan would be incredible building a home together… and converting a barn to a home? THE BEST DREAM EVER. I can’t wait to see it happen! Hugs to you, Farmgirl friend! – Dori –

  27. Katie Pence says:

    Thank you for sharing your story I know it inspires others. Have you tried to make the farm a profitable industry, at least paying taxes ?
    We bought forty acres nine years ago on the southern Mendocino coast of Ca. My husband and I both thought it was wonderful for it had a lot of flat land . We had just married a few years before and this was us creating our own space. After we made the offer I realized I was pregnant, I thought at first it was just menopause…We still moved forward and blessings came from everywhere to allow it all to be built into a permaculture farm. My husband cut the trees we milled into our wood to build our buildings. It’s a little much for us now, we are very tired and more needs to be done. But it’s slowed to a more comfortable pace. We have 110 fruit trees, 25 olives, two acres of vegetable and flower gardens. We market flowers, eggs, vegetables and bread to supplement our income. We have to still work outside to support further development of the property.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Katie, your farm sounds absolutely lovely. I bet your weather is amazing!! 🙂 We have cattle that we raise to supplement our retirement income and “pay for the farm”! My grown daughter and I also grow and sell cut flowers and that is a great help too. My husband has also been able to do some Engineering Consulting at his old job, and he enjoys that! Thanks for writing and for your suggestions. – Dori –

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Hi again, Katie. I got on your website and looked around. I love your bread baked in the wood oven. And your home! It’s just gorgeous. – Dori –

  28. Debra says:

    What a beautiful testimony to family and faith in healing. Your journey is an inspiration to anyone that believes they are facing the impossible. And the pictures of your family and farm are awesome! My husband and I live on a 70 acre farm in north Louisiana. We have cattle, chickens, cats, a goat named Thelma and a dog named Jim Tom. The best part of our lives is having our 3 children and their families within 3 miles of us in their own homes. I can’t imagine any other life and am so thankful for the one we have. Best wishes from our farm to yours!

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Debra, I’ve never been to Louisiana. I would love to see it. And I do agree – the best part if having our children and their families nearby also! I honestly can’t imagine life without them right down the country road! And yes, I also am so very thankful for the life we get to live here in the country. Thanks for your sweet comment. – Dori –

  29. Bonnie Ellis says:

    Wow, I’ve got tears in my eyes. Congratulations on the 10 year anniversary. Your place is indeed beautiful. No wonder you knew it was just right. I spent my childhood on a farm in Southern Iowa and it is just my best memory. My husband and I don’t live on a farm now and are in our retirement but thank you for sharing your wonderful story. God is awesome. Bonnie

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Bonnie, It’s a happy story huh? 🙂 My childhood memories of ranching are the best memories a kid could have. I’m so thankful for those. I’m also very thankful to be here and to be able to live close enough to our grand-girls so they will have some amazing farm memories too. Thank you for writing. – Dori –

  30. Colleen says:

    I really liked reading your story. I guess I knew bits and pieces of it but reading it from you was great. You have a knack for capturing a reader. 🙂 I look forward to reading your posts here and your blog. Take care.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Colleen, I have written some of this story on my personal blog too! We miss all of you Utahn’s. Wish you could come see us! 🙂 Thanks for writing and keeping in touch. Hugs – Dori –

  31. terri says:

    what a beautiful story. Thank you for being an inspiration. How wonderful it is to have your family so close.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Terri, thank you for you kind words… I don’t feel like an inspiration! But thank you! And yes, living near our kids and grand-girls is the best feeling ever! – Dori –

  32. natalie says:

    Thank you for telling your story. Dreams do come true and I am so glad that you and your family are living yours. Blessings for you and everyone on your farm.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Natalie, I think dreams do come true… but I also think we have to work hard to stay focused on those dreams. And even be willing for sacrifice to make them happen sometimes too. Thanks for writing! – Dori –

  33. Denise Ross says:

    Beautiful story Dori. I’m glad you are better and living your dream 🙂

  34. Thank you for sharing that wonderful story of how you got to your farm. It has always been my dream too and as we come up on our 30th anniversary I know it is time. I too was diagnosed with cancer, last year, and had such a scary month of wondering if I wouldn’t ever get to my land. Now, I feel we shouldn’t wait but move on with this dream. So happy for you that you found your perfect place and you are so lucky to have family so close by too.

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Dear Shelly,

      Thank you for writing. I’m so sorry about your cancer diagnosis – yes, the waiting for the results are harder than actually going through the treatment isn’t it? I hope you get to move forward with your farm dream soon. It is the best thing we’ve ever done.

      Hugs to you – another cancer survivor!

      – Dori –

      • Thank you Dori!
        I try to fill my thoughts with the positive and a small farm future and not dwell on small chances and fear of a re- occurrence. There will always be a tiny shadow at the back of my mind, but I choose to just let it be a reminder to live life and really start working towards my goal wholeheartedly. I’ll be checking back on you. Hugs back fellow survivor. Shelly

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