My name is Juliet O’Brien and I am 12 years old. I go up to the farm every Saturday and Sunday, as I have school during the week. Although if I could, I’d be up at the farm every day. My Daddy owns a dairy farm in north Tipperary and we have a herd of Friesian cows.

My favourite animal is the cow, so I know a lot about cows, but not as much as my Daddy. We also have three horses and a foal on the way.

Calving season is here. Daddy has 247 cows in calf, which is the usual amount for us. Daddy breeds mostly Friesian, White Head and Limousin calves, but this year he is trying another breed called Speckle Park.

I love calving season. It’s so much fun to feed the calves. Every year, I get to pick three calves. I give them names and watch them grow throughout the year.

Last year, I picked this little bald calf. It was quite unusual to be born without any hair and the poor thing was shaking because of the cold weather, but we placed her in the warmest pen in the shed. I named her Milly and now she is absolutely thriving and her hair has grown, but not as much as my other calf Nellie.

Nellie had it very hard at the beginning of her life. She got pneumonia and was very sick. She was put on a drip because she wouldn’t eat. She eventually got better after a couple of weeks though, and now she enjoys sucking my hands. My hands are red raw from her sucking.

I also had a lovely red Limousin X Friesian calf called Tilly. Tilly and Milly were very good friends, probably because they were in the same pen together. I used to watch them chase after each other. But then daddy had to sell Tilly, as he only keeps Friesians.

It was sad to see her go, but I suppose you have to get on with these things on the farm and at least I still had my two other lovely calves to pay special attention to.

I can’t wait to pick three more calves this year. I also have quite a lot of cows that I picked as calves from previous years still in the herd, but my favourite one is a large cow that I recently renamed Fatso 2.

As a calf I called her Buttercup, but as she got older I realised she was getting larger and larger by the minute. Now she has the roundest tummy of all of daddy’s cows.

There was a Fatso 1 before her, but sadly she had to go to the mart. Fatso 2 is my favourite cow now because she knows her name and when I call her, she slowly comes over and she loves hugs. She also loves head scratches.

She wouldn’t dare go up to you and nudge you to use you as a head scratcher. She just kindly licks your hand as if to say ‘could you please scratch my head’.

I love the farm and I always have a great time there.