The last message was written in January 2008. It has been a very busy year; so much to do, so little time in which to do it. You all know that story. Now here is a continuation of the story of the why of "The Country Wife".
After the boys and I brought the lumber home to our small acreage in Vermont, Bob started building a barn. It was fifteen feet by sixteen feet and began with a cement floor, including a nice deep gutter, a stall area, and a barn floor area in which to store grain barrels and a chicken pen. Very compact and tidy and able to house up to four cows, which, for a short time, it did.
Later on in the fall of 1976 Mr. Dexter, a wonderful farmer neighbor, went to Gray's Auction for us and found us a beautiful gentle Jersey cow named Buttercup, which he purchased on our behalf then took to house in his barn while Bob completed construction of our own agricultural facility!
We took the family and went over to Mr. Dexter's barn to help with chores and learn the process of milking a cow. It turned out that Buttercup's udder was not ideally suited for hand-milking so Mr. Dexter suggested we look into purchasing a milking machine. We took his advice and eventually found some retired farmers who had more advice on what we should do, and who kindly gave us their old milking equipment and even a vacuum pump. (Many years later we were able to return the favor and gave away the equipment to other young people starting up.)