Last night OMG gave us our first babies of the year! We have 2 girls and three boys. It was a fast and easy delivery; all 5 were born with in 15 minutes. We have named the girls Clara and Midnight Skye and are still working on names for the boys. All are doing very well this morning and have been up and nursing, walking, and crying, OMG is doing wonderful. We plan to bottle-feed at least the two girls we will keep an eye on the boys and bottle feed if we need to.
Unnamed boy, very friendly and likes people.
Boy #3, Boy #2, Clara, Midnight Skye and Boy #1
Boy #2, Midnight Skye, Boy #3, Boy #1
Here we are again it is Thanksgiving. Today is a day for family, friends, and for giving thanks for all that we have. For most people today is different from yesterday, maybe no work or traveling to the home of a loved ones. For us there is little change in the daily flow, the animals don't know that today is supposed to be different. They still wake at the same time and want to be feed and milked when it is time. Our day isn't much different than is was for families celebrating in the 1863, the first year that Thanksgiving was a federal holiday. We are still up at the same time and have to get chores done. The big difference for us is that instead of making three meals we fix a small breakfast and a Thanksgiving meal. Ours is not timed to be done before football or at the end of a parade. For us it is timed so that we can cook, eat and have it all cleaned up without interrupting the goats schedule.
We don't visit people today, we invite them to join us. It is a chance to share what we have harvested this year. We don't raise our own turkey, because frankly turkeys scare the stuffing out of me. We do grow the veggies that will be on the table and can them too. So in a way we began our Thanksgiving day meal prep last spring when we planted the potatoes, beans, and other greens. We are also beginning to plan next year's meal. Now is when we start the garden plan so that by spring we will know what seeds to plant and when to harvest and can. It is also when I begin implementing the kidding plan for next year, so that there will be milk and butter on the table too.
The life that we live is different that the majority of people today who are several generations removed from the farm. We may not know the origins of everything on the table today but we know where most of it is from, and can even name the people involved with it's production much like those who sat down at the first harvest meal in Plymouth all those years ago. Like those at the first table we too worry that we will have enough to see us through to the next harvest. There are many things that I am thankful that we do they way they did and to experience today in a way similar to that first meal. But I will tell you I am also thankful for the fact that if I forgot something I can just run to the store and grab it, not go with out. Well it is now time to go put the finishing touches on the meal and then to get ready for the evening chores.
It has only taken me two weeks to put our latest news down on "paper". If we go back to the 9th of August I can fill you in on all the new babies at the farm. First up is our little black hen. When we went to do morning chores we discovered that she had hatched out 10 yes 10 little chicks. I took a bit of work but we got her and 9 of the chicks into the kidding yard. One of the little ones didn't make it as so often happens with the babies. By the following Sunday she only had 8 babies following her around. Now she is taking them all over the place to scratch and look for bugs where ever they may be hiding.
Our next set of suprise babies came on the 14th of August. I knew that both Bea and Carlione could kid at any moment but figured that Caroline would be the first to go. Well once again the goats had to show me who was right and it was Bea who kidded first. The kids had been checking on the goats about once an hour all day until about 4 and every time everything was just fine. After work I had stopped to pick up feed for the next couple of weeks so I was a little late getting home. After we had unloaded the feed and got everyones buckets ready I figured that I would dit down for a bit before we headed out. While I was sitting outside I heard a baby goat crying, at first I thought it was Betty, so I sent Isabelle out to check. As she was heading out I started to listen closer and realized that the baby that was crying was "too little" to be Betty. About that time Isabelle hollered to let us know that Bea had babies. Two beauftiful does, Duchess Kate and Princess Diana and one buck Prince George, pictured. By the time we had found the kids Bea had them dry and they were all up playing and nursing. We quickley got Bea and all three babies into the kidding yard.
As for Caroline she deceided to wait three more days to kid. This time we were out there with her for start to end about four hours, it was a long afternoon. Any who have been there when a goat goes into labor will know that there is not much to say about the time you wait for that little nose or hoof to show up. At the end of the four hours we had two more kids one big buck, still looking for his name, the same size as our 3 day olds and one timy doe, Princess Grace.
All of our babies are doign great all of the baby goats like to play with each other. Everything is great until a baby goes to nurse from the wrong mommy! Thou now comes the sad part of the kidding season, it is time to sell off the babies and seclected other goats who don't fit in with our vision for the herd. It will be sad to see them go but I know that I will find the best homes possible for all who are leaving. I will vaule the time I have left with some of them and look forward to watching the little ones grow and thrive.
Wow the last two weeks have been a blur and the next several are looking to be the same. So to fill you all in we will go back to the night of April 20th. The day started with no babies and just before midnight we had five. Three bucks and two does. I did manage a few hours of sleep that night and Sunday was a quite day. Most of the day was spent just watching baby goats playing and calling the boss to take a couple of days off to stay with the babies. During this time with the help of my sister all the babies got names. I decided to go with WWII names, after all mamma is named after Rosie the Riviter. So the grils were named after pin ups, Betty Paige and Judy Garland. For the boys I decied to go with actor soliders, those men who left hollywood for the battle field, Auddie Murphy, Jimmy Stweart and Lee Marvin. So naming the babies has also become a history lesson for the human kids.
Monday I took time to get some things done. Including getting some goat milk from a local dairy. I knew that with 5 babies it was likley that at laest one and maybe all of them would need a little extra milk. I was also able to pick up some wonderful goat milk lip balm and loation. I also made a trip to the farm store for nipples that fit on a Coke bottle, so that I had all I needed just in case.
The real exictment didin't start until about 8 on Monday. I went out to check on eveyone and make sure that everything was closed up for the night. When I went into the goat shed I noticed that baby Murphy was just laying there. I watched for a second before I picked him up. When I picked him up he was chilled and barley moving, so I wrapepd him in my coat and we went inside. It didn't take us long to determine the problem, lack of food. He just was not strong enough to fight for his meal and needed food fast. It's a good thing that I had picked up the milk that afernoon and talked with the lady that owns the dairy. Talking to her I learn what I needed to do, how warm the milk needed to be and the little things, that if I wouldv'e had to look up at the point it would have been to late for Murphy. That's how close we were to lossing him that I didn't have any time to reaserach anything.
So we got his milk warmed up and tried a bottle, but the poor baby had no suck reflex. So we had to find a delivery method that didn't require him to help at all, we found eye droppers. We quickly got a few droopers of milk into him and could see his little tummies working. We spend the next hour or so giving him a dropper or two at a time. We also found some nutra drench, a vitiman supplement for goats and he got a few drops of that as well.
That night I slept on the floor with Murphy. Well slept is a bit of an overstatment, I mostly just dozzed a bit between checking on him. By Tuesday morning he was able to stand again, so we pulled out the playpen and towles and put him in there. Both Brandy and Duke were very attentive to him and his movment or lack there of and let us know. After a nap on the couch Isabelle and I loaded into the car to go get more milk for Murphy. We headed down to Goshen to a friends house. Our friend also raises goats and said that she had extra milk that we could have for Murphy. It was good to drive to Goshen. I always take Redwood Road down the west side out Utah Lake to get there. It was time that I needed to settle down and refoucs on everything. It was a very well spent few hours and I got 3 gallons of milk.
Once I got home I made the decision that Murphy needed a goat with him in the house. So I went out the goats and picked out Judy the biggest goat.I picked her so that the others could get more milk. As soon as Judy was placed in the pen Murphy was up and wanting to play with her. It was at this point that we knew he would make it.
Wednesday was nice so we decicded that the best thing for Murphy and Juday was to be outside in the goats yard, I mean they are goats. So now I take Murphy a bottle before I go to work, as soon as I get home, and one before I go to bed. Isabelle feeds him druing the day and he is a happy bouncy baby goat. Who will get to stay with us as a weather.
Now while dealing with Murphy we are also in full prep mode for the ISDGA Goat show in Bosie over Memorial day. It has been decided that Dad, Isabelle and I will be going. We are only taking two goats with us, because I just don'r have a good way to transport more. So I am taking my two boys, Beau-Tye and Apollo. The show is now two weeks away and I still have a lot of stuff to get done. Have to pick up the horse trailer, make hotel reservations, fill out show forms, work with the boys, shave the boys. And on and on the list goes. I will some how find a way to get it all done. I will be sure to post about the weekend so you all can enjoy it as well.
We also had a close encounter with life flight last week. Here is the email that mom sent about what happened. Because she can say it better than I can.
Hi, just wanted to let you know that we just had all the excitement we need for the week or two. Someone got hurt/sick over at the school, first fire and ambulance then life-flight They circled 3 times over the back yard, then landed at the school. Oreo was as close as he could get to the school yard, when it came into land. Scared the pee out of him.
Horses, and goats went somewhat nuts. Kidding yard went into the shed, almost did in Isabelle who was sitting in front of the door, James went out and sat with the boys, I sat with everyone in Capone's yard. Beau was fine as long as the horses where up by him at the gate. Gary was out with them.
So that is what has happend in the last two weeks. :)
Saturday Rosie finally kidded. I have been waiting not so patiently for her. From looking at her I know that I could expect at least 3 and maybe 4. Well she surprised me with 5, that's right 5 little babies!!!
Even before Rosie kidded it was a busy day for all of us here. All three adults here had different meeting to attend at 8 that morning. We didn't want to leave the children here alone because we knew that Rosie was close and while the kids could handle it if they had too I didn't want them to. So we had a close friend come and babysit, not the human kids but the goats. Yes that's right I hired a goat sitter. We were fortunate that nothing happened while we were gone.
That afternoon while sitting out with the goats, I noticed that Capone was staying close to Rosie and not letting the others get to close. At this point I knew that we were getting close. I decided that I would go in and have dinner, stake and baked potatoes and I am glad that I did! As I was finishing dinner my goat alarm Duke came and got me saying that I need to go out there now. Me in my infinite human wisdom knew he was talking about Rosie.
I got up and put shoes on and headed out there. Were I learned that the dog knew what was going on and that I had no clue. It turns out that Jazzy, OMG, Mae and Licorice were out in the horses yard. So the call/text went out and all the adults and children came to help with the goat round up, we even had the neighbor there to help with the horses and fixing the fence.
After a frantic half hour we had all the goats were they belong and the fence secure. I took and seat for what I thought was going to be a long night of watching a goat paw the ground and not do much of anything. Little did I know Rosie had finally decided that it was time to get the kids out. In less than half an hour baby number one was born a beautiful little doe Betty Paige. She didn't take long to push out number two Auddie Murphy. Rosie was a good mom and got the babies cleaned up and in no time they were both up and looking for food. At this point things slowed down and we had to wait for half an hour or so for baby number three and second buck, Jimmy Stewart.
After three I figured that we just might be done and we got the first three weighed, Betty 1 lb, Murphy 1 lb and Jimmy 1.5 lbs. I was happy with my three little babies, one chamoisee and two buckskins. Every one was weighed, up moving and eating. All the humans were getting ready to pack things up and call it a night then.... Along come number four Lee Marvin and before we even really had time to take a breath the last baby was here Judy Garland.
Last moth I attended a class to be come a certified milk tester. It was a fun and informative class and now I can take samples for those who are on the Dairy Herd Improvement plan. While we were at the class we helped with dis-budding a few of the kids there and tattoo Miss Mae. As always our trip to Shadow Hills was a wonderful learning experience and I can't wait until we get to visit again.
Miss Mae and Licorice made the trip home with us and have joined the herd. As you can see Queen Bea has taken a liking to the babies. That is as long as they are not in the manger. Both of the babies have found their place in the herd and are not starting to figure out where the humans are in the structure. They will soon learn that we are at the top!
Licorice is a weather and the original plan was that he would go to the processor. That idea lasted about 10 minutes after we got home and now he is a part of the family. He is learning from Capone what is expected of him. Every now and then he will come over to me to nibble on my hoodie.
Miss Mae is named for Al Capone's wife Mae. She earned this name because she is Capone's half sister and Al Capone's only sister was names Rose and I figured that one Rose in the herd was enough. She is settling into the new herd very well there are times that I catch her and OMG playing so I know that she is feeling at home. Although she does keep close to her buddy Licorice at night. She will now lets us pet her while she is eating and sometimes when she is not, but she still isn't too sure about it.
Rosie is getting close to kidding. In the last few weeks there have been a number of faulse alarms from her. She defentaly is uncomfortable right now so I am hoping that she gets on with kidding soon. I can't wait to see how many she gives us this time around. I am not retaining any of her kids so they will all be for sale either at 8 weeks or as bottle babies for those that want a bottle baby. I am looking forward to having a steady supply of fresh goats milk again. Queen Bea is allso due to kid this month. At this point though she is acting and looking normal, so we will see what happens there.
Well for the last week the temptures have been below freezing. This has created a problem with the water for all the animals. The horses have a heater in thier water but no one else has a larged enough water dish to put a heater in. Our answer has been to take out milk jugs of hot water and melt and fill everyones water.
Yesterday we learned that for one goat this wasn't enough. When we went out to check on them he was shaking and while watching him for most of the day he did not urinate. After doing some online research I decided that he might have a blockage. This is often fatal in rumants. So we took a trip to the vet and Capone loved the car ride. Once at the vet Capone got a check up and it was determined that he was cold and dehydrated. We then had the choice of leaving him over night or taking him home and setting him up where we could watch his intake and output.
This morning we found many puddles all over the garage and knew that he was going to be just fine. He is now back out with the rest of the goats. This was a lesson in water for goats and knowing that they all
I will try and post about once a week to let everyone konw what is going on at the farm and any funny stories that we have. This week there is not much with Christmas and New Years. We are starting to plan for the garden this spring and still looking for local sourced for some herbs. We haved received about 6 inches of snow this week and that makes feeding a cold time.
Story of the Week
Now these stories may or may not be recent. Some weeks there in not much going on. Well this is from a couple of weeks ago. The kids Heart and Mario went out to feed and water the goats. When my mom Cali heard the dinner bell. We have the bell out there for the kids to ring in case they need help. Well mo runs out there to find that the girls had gotten out of thier yard. Of course theu were in Beau's yard, right where we don't want them. She looks to find Heart sitting on Beau and holding on to his neck. In an attempt to keep him away from the girsl. They only on still in his yard was OMG the smallest of the does. The good thing is that Beau could care less that the other goats were in his yard, he was busy talking with Howard, the roster that lives in his yard. He also took no notice of the 10 year old sitting on him.
Beau has the best personallity that you could ask for in a buck. He makes a lot of noise when talking to Howard or the green ball he thinks is his girlfriend. He likes hugs and attention and is gental there are times when I am playing with him that he makes contact with me and he almost never hits hard enough to leave a mark. I have hig hopes for him at the ISDGA and Sunhill goat shows this year.