Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tiny Titties

Today we picked up Flamingo a gentle Alpine-Boer cross who is as strong as an ox. Her chichis are Boer chichis. I have gotten used to our Lady Covington's boobies and was not prepared for Flamingo's tiny titties. I am thankful that we picked her up today and I have time to build a bond with her before we sell her shares because I almost have to relearn how to milk her because I can barely fit my hands around her nipples. We have 4 new her share-ers which is very exciting because that means we might actually be able to survive off goat farming. With these new members we are almost at capacity for 1 goat so luckily we have some time before Flamingo's milk is needed.
Welcome Flamingo, to the herd!!!!!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pickin' up Chicks

Yesterday I went on a community herb walk. Summer is usually not the best time for herb walks because everything is dried up and herbs are always best fresh. Still the walk was great and we got to be re-birthed and receive everything we didn't get the first time we were born. Most importantly I learned that there is a great alternative medicine to pink eye, a somewhat common ailment in goats that everyone recommends an antibiotic for. I don't want to use any antibiotics for many reasons but especially if people are going to be drinking the milk.

On our journey home from our short walk around the hood we found a small patch of sad chickweed or scientifically Stellaria media. A woman in the group said that she had boiled some in water and applied a few drops to her son's pink eye and later that day it had cleared up entirely. I hope that my goats don't get pink eye but now if they do I won't have to worry about using antibiotics on them.

I also learned the difference between some of the lichens around here. Usnea is a great preservative because it has antibiotic and antifungal properties. And if you're hungry enough you can eat it.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Unsalted Nuts

We harvested some hazel nuts a while back and nutella has nothing on nature. Its hard to find a tree with nuts on them because the squirrels and jays usually get them all before anyone else can. But if you find some I highly recommend collecting some because they are quite a delectable snack.

California Hazel (Corylus cornuta ssp. californiaca)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Home Sweet Home

We found a place to live! Which is such a relief. I was beginning to feel a bit frantic about not being able to find a place to live with our animals. But all that worrying can go out the window because we will be moving into a fancier yurt across the canyon with roaming space for our fast growing herd. We also might be having a goat roast soon to celebrate harvest season and our new home.

We are still looking for an alpine buck to buck our does.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Hurray for Animals...We Have New Goats!

Earlier this week we took a drive up to Sonoma County to pick up a doe and her doeling. It was an incredibly inspiring day because not only did we expand our herd but we met a very sweet family that motivated us to get our act together and really start our goat share.

We learned the details of herd sharing, organizations that are defending farmer's rights to sell directly to the consumer like the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund and the difference between A1 and A2 milk.

This family has a few Jersey cows that produce A2 (the easier to digest type) milk that support a family of 4 from selling shares of the herd. It was great to see a young couple doing similar things as us that was actually successful. I have been starting to doubt starting a herd share because there seemed to be a larger number of unsuccessful goat farms in the area. But this delightful couple has only being doing it since December and are still planning on expanding. Which gave me hope especially since they were so generous with information on how to set everything up.

I am so happy that we went to pick up Peaches and Petal.