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In February of 2009, my husband and I bought our first home located on a few acres in Johnson, Vermont. We live here with our dog, Ollie, two cats: Elvis and Atticus, six Nigerian Dwarf goats: May, Chutney, Poppy, Juniper, Willow, and Jokers Wild, and about fifteen laying hens. And to top it all off we welcomed our daughter, Isabel, into the world on January 11th, 2011.

We're slowly updating our 1850's farmhouse while steadily working towards a healthy, meaningful, self-sufficient life together.

This blog details our endeavors along with our successes and failures- all in good fun. Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you again soon!

May

May
May and I enjoying some sunshine
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Kidding season has begun!

Lovingly Posted by Melissa Wednesday, June 15, 2011

So anyone who knows about raising goats is probably laughing right now because it is a LITTLE bit late in the season for kidding.  But hey, you do what you can, right?  We bred our goats late because I wanted some adjustment time after bringing our daughter into the world before I wanted to think about milking goats.  So here we are.

Jokers Wild certainly threw some good kids our way and we couldn't be more pleased thus far.  A week ago we had a major heat wave and I was holed up in the house with Isabel working away.  Kyle got home around 4:30 and announces that we have baby goats!  I knew a few of our does were close, their tail ligaments were getting softer by the day, but I was surprised to hear that one of them kidded without me noticing.  We hopped outside, which was a shock to my system because it was almost twenty degrees hotter that the house, and found Juniper in the shade of a few trees with two tiny babies by her side.  They were already dry and wobbling around.  They are two little bucklings, both tri-colored and I think we're going to be keeping one for breeding.  My husband has already named them Rootbeer and Moxie.





Not two days later my darling May graced us with the arrival of a doeling as well!  I saw her udder was getting bigger and her ligaments were almost gone but she fooled me last year so I wasn't holding my breath on her.  Well, apparently good things DO come to those who wait.  Not only did May produce a beautiful and friendly little girl but she also has a GREAT big udder and fairly large teats.  Pretty impressive for a first freshener I think.  I made my first attempt at milking her just this morning and while I wouldn't say it was easy it certainly went much smoother than any of my attempts last year at milking Chutney.  So I'm excited and hopeful.



Poppy was the third so far to kid this year.  Two days after May's doeling was born, Poppy produced a doeling of her own.  She looks just like Joker and is just a tiny little thing.  Poppy is our smallest goat so I'm not sure how successfully I will be able to milk her, but I'm hoping to do a bit with her and Juniper this year so they'll have an easier time of it next year.  If we could just get enough milk to avoid buying any for Kyle's coffee or my goat cheese addiction then it will be worth the effort.


Still left to kid are Chutney and Willow.  Chutney is looking just as big as last year and her ligaments are hard as rock so I'm thinking she'll give us at least three kids again this year.  Time will tell.  So as it stands we're up to four kids.  The little bucklings were disbudded last night and the doelings will be done before the end of the week.  I'm still waiting for their little nubs to come up.

Things are moving along in other areas of the farm as well.  Our pigs and chicks are growing fast over the pasture, the garden is doing well, the bees (I am very sorry to report) didn't make it through the winter so we're going to wait and try again next year.  I will be trying to blog more often now that we have so very much going on.  I would hate to get too far behind when there is stuff to report on!  Thanks for sticking around, folks!

1 Responses to Kidding season has begun!

  1. Congratulations! They are all so cute! :)

     

Chutney

Chutney
Our first "kid"

Chickens

Chickens
We have four Dominiques, four Black Australorps, and four Easter-Eggers