Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: Carolyn

Fighting the Coronavirus…

…not. Perhaps the safest spot in the world…a Thistle Hill pasture miles from anywhere. Unfortunately, this is a picture out of the file. Daughter Carolyn is back in Dallas seeing patients at Baylor Medical Center. And they’ve got me locked up in an Assisted Living Home in nearby Falls Church. That leaves grandson Church to […]

Breeding…part three…

…and now it gets really interesting…starting in the pre-dawn darkness… and a pasture alive with blinking red lights. It’s the heat detectors…right on schedule at 48 hours. When a cow goes into heat, another mounts it, crushing the chemical patch on its rump. One of Carolyn’s jobs is thawing the semen straws. That’s what that […]

Breeding step two…

…is very much a family affair. The herd has to be brought in from the pasture and sorted to isolate the target cows. We started in the dark, in a light rain. Grandson Church is really in charge now. He administers a shot of lutalyze which will bring the cow into heat in 48-72 hours. […]

Meeting of the braintrust…

An inspection tour…

…the new management took me around to check on our cows the other day.  With my usual impeccable timing, we were right in the middle of a blizzard. Carolyn and Church got a close look but I stayed in the car, which promptly got stuck in the snow.  But the main herd looked great…featuring a […]

Let’s call this before….

Christmas weekend opened splendidly with sunrise reflected off the Blue Ridge..captured by our designated early riser, daughter Carolyn. But if there’s a before there must be an after.  At the moment Carolyn took the before picture a passing motorist was also admiring the sunrise over Thistle Hill.  At least that’s what he told the investigating […]

Did you know that grass-fed beef is one of the top ten sources of tryptophan?

I have to confess that I didn’t know that grass fed beef is on the top ten list for sources of tryptophan…I always think of turkey. Tryptophan is the amino acid that goes on to become serotonin, the “feel-good” hormone which is low in depression, and melatonin, which helps us sleep at night. Other sources […]

Remember, the answer lies in the soil….

When we first moved to Dallas, we had an English gardener, Patrick Butterworth, who ended every letter, birthday card, and bill with the above phrase. Over time I have come to appreciate how incredibly apt this phrase describes so many systems, from the human body and how well it heals, to the garden, to the […]

At the end of the day….

….the sun sets over the Blue Ridge mountains.  Photo by our daughter, Carolyn Matthews.  

Why we’re so fat….

Dad’s note:  what follows is a post from our daughter, Carolyn.  At the Baylor Medical Center in Dallas, they call her Dr. Matthews.  She is a cancer surgeon who has shifted some of her attention recently to creating a center for integrative medicine at Baylor.            Carolyn is a frequent writer and lecturer, the mother of […]