I'll admit that I have passing fantasies about buying a small farm on which I would plant an heirloom apple orchard, grow a small market garden, raise a few dairy cows and make artisan cheese for a living. In my imaginary world, the grass is always green, the fruits and veggies are always flawless, the milk is always flowing and the cheese is always tasty. The reality of this life in all probability is much more uncertain and complicated. An honest and at times brutal account of such an undertaking is detailed in Kurt Timmermeister's memoir, Growing a Farmer, which I just finished reading the other day.
One has to have a great deal of respect for today's dairy farmer. With the kind of commercial and regulatory pressures they currently face, it cannot be easy to carve out a living doing what they do. I'll try to remember this the next time I purchase a gallon of milk.