Monday, March 24, 2014

Goat time. And stuff.

It's been a busy weekend for me. I started farmer's market Sat. morning at Brainerd. Right now it's still 11-12, which is great for me with all I have to do in the mornings. There weren't very many people there. But I did get to meet one of my FB followers family. She was not there, but her husband and 2 little girls came right straight over to my table. He told me his wife follows my FB and saw I had eggs at market. So he got a couple dozen. So that  just made my day right there. Then that afternoon, I had to go to a friends to get his 4 goatie kids to take them to my friend who dis buds kids for me. That took several hours. Long day.

Yesterday, the family came for hot dogs and we had a good visit. My mom got to bottle feed Campbelle, one of my bottle lambs. And a cute little couple with a young baby came by to see if I had chickens for sale. They've just moved right over the ridge on Hog Jowl Rd. and just finished their coop. They ended up buying a few dozen eggs and a frozen chicken. And might be interested in a herd share for goat milk!

So now that all the sheep are finished with lambing, I am into goat kid watch! Hubby and I got the goat barn kind of ready. I still want to go get about 8 more pallets to make some separate stalls for them. I'll take you on a tour of the goat barn.

This is it. It was a cow shelter back in the day. There are 2 big sections that open to the South. One is completely open and we have a cattle panel across it. And the other has an old door.

This is the open part with actually 2 sections, with the stalls to the left.

This is the first stall, with the old door, where the goats eat when dry. I started a few weeks ago feeding them in the milk room. So I need to put fresh straw down in here. We had to fix this gate-door yesterday. When I had the 2 pigs in here, they really did a job on it. So that's fixed now and I can actually shut it. I don't know what that ledge to the left is for. But when there are kids in here, they always end up under it. That's where they sleep. And when I had hens back here, they'd lay eggs as far back in there as they could get.

And this is the back bigger stall where I want to make a few smaller stalls to the left. I can also keep the kids in there at night to milk the does in the lorning. Behind the blankets is the cattle panel and the pasture next door.

And here are the very big, ready to pop, does. This is Zarah Belle. This will be her 2nd freshening. And I have been faux-milking her to get her used to it and her teats are a bit longer now! I have the little hand milker that I got to use on her last year. I hope I don't have to use it.

And Penelope Jane. Her 2nd too. She's so sweet and the best udder ever. I love milking her.

This is Zeeboo. I got her 2 Christmas' ago and she did not get bred then. She's making up for it this year! Wonder if she'll have triplets? What do y'all think? And I thought she might go first, but then saw Sandy this morning.

I know some people don't like to see this end of a goat, but right now, it's like THE most important part of the goat. It just about tells me everything I want to know. Like udder size, tail pins, goo, as in Sandy has a string of goo right here. And Sandy is ALWAYS THE last goat to kid. ALWAYS. And usually several weeks after all the others have had theirs. But she could be going soon. I will be watching this one. She's really not that big. But last year, she did have triplets. So if she has a  single, I'll be ok with it. It took a lot out of her having 3 kids. And she dried up not long after I sold them too.

I sure hope they do wait a few more days. It's supposed to be in the 20's and low 30's the next few nights. I can wait a few more days.

So if anyone would like a few kids and wants to bottle feed, I would love to sell these kids as soon as possible so I can start milking. I also need milk for my lamb babies. Next year, goat kids first, then lambs. That way, if anything happens like this year, I'll have goat milk for them. Right now, I am getting the milk replacer and raw cow milk. I'm getting one more gallon, then hopefully I'll have goat milk this week.

And I am seeing green things in the garden! It's been sunny the last few days and all the kale and collards are popping up! I love this time of year. I am feeling SO much better and really want to get this garden started. BUT, I am not going to rush it like last year. It's fine if I'm late. I just want everything to make it the first time. I'll be out there this afternoon tilling and planting some more radishes and lettuce. And Swiss Chard too.

I had an e-mail from Kristin checking on me. That's so sweet of her. I am fine and have not had any more episodes like I did. I am trying to watch what I eat. And drinking dandelion tea. I also found some dried nettles. So have had nettle tea too. That sure gives me energy! Maybe that's why I'm feeling so much better.

I sure hope you ALL have a great week and get a lot of gardens started!


Betty Ann said...

Wow! Welcome back Kris! You sound SO much better this week. :)
I love the goat pictures. Kristin's 6 pregnant goats are 4 down and 2 to go. 8 kids so far. We absolutely love the baby goats and cannot wait for MILK! I am looking forward to seeing your baby goat pictures.

SweetLand Farm said...

Your does are huge! I'll bet they can't wait to pop!

I won't be doing any gardening for a while yet. Too cold and we have snow. Not to mention it was -8 last night. But I guess we could start some seedlings!

Kristin said...

Those girls look ready to pop! Yay for goat milk.

I wish I had another stall too. With them all kidding about the same time, I could use the space. I had to let Onyx and her kids out today so I could lock Betty Buttercup overnight. Onyx's poor little girl (who I'm keeping) was out of the barn in the dark!

Next year the storage area in the barn becomes a kidding stall!

I'm glad that you're feeling well and that everything is looking up at the farm. Can't wait to see those goat kids!

Kris said...

No kids yet and I sure hope they wait a few more days. It's freezing tonight.

I saw Kristin's babies. SO many of them. And 1 more to kid yet. She'll have her hands full with all those cuties.

Oh spring, where did you go? Please come back again!