Tag Archives: Caroline

The Dairy Days of Summer

1 Aug

I am still milking my four girls: Astra, Ava, Caroline, and Joy.

Caroline

Now that I’ve finally gotten Perdita to quit nursing her mom, I’m getting right at five quarts of milk per day.

I’m making yogurt and some buttermilk and chèvre. I am making lots of mozzarella cheese for the next year.  I want to make more mozzarella sticks again this year because they were delicious, and they make a nice treat at family get togethers.

heat treating and stretching it

I am also making soap.  It’s been way too long since I made any, but everything is so uncertain since the farmer’s market shut down and then the pandemic stopped me opening my soap room to the public.  I’m not even set up for it anymore.  I still have the bed in there from when I lived in it after the derecho.

oatmeal and honey and plain soaps curing

I’m restocking.  So far I’ve made six batches.  I have a list of fourteen more that I should make.  I’m not sure I actually have enough supplies to make that many, but we’ll see what happens.

Hopefully, I can continue my little soap business, but with rising shipping costs and everything else, I’m not sure.  If you’re interested, you can check out my soaps HERE.

Jasmine Dreams, Kentish Rain, and Lavender

When I get all of the cheese and soaps done, I need to refill my freezer for any bottle kids I might have next year.

Pretzel (every picture of her will be running to see if I have a bottle)

Pretzel has nearly emptied my freezer, and she’s still getting bottles.

Weaning

18 Jul

Thursday morning, I moved my bucks back onto the front pasture.

Freddie and Xerxes

I decided Thursday afternoon to wean kids so I could start milking again after everyone got mixed back together.  I shut Perdita up north first.  When I went back out to catch Joy’s boys, she was already out.  I think she climbed the remains of the tarp hut and went over the fence.

Perdita and Astra in pasture

I put Joy’s boys up there but I never did get Perdita caught again because she was standing on top of the fallen walnut tree until dark.  I caught Swen and Olaf and shut them up there so I could at least milk Joy in the morning.

Swen and Olaf

The next morning, Joy’s boys were out.  Seriously?  I swear it has been harder to wean kids this year than ever before.

Greta and Gary, Joy with her boys Olaf and Swen, and Micah

Anyhow, I did actually get to Astra before Perdita had breakfast, so I got a pint out of her.

Astra

Then, after my coffee, I once again weaned the little stinker.  She’s lucky she’s so cute.

Then I decided to go with Ava’s kids.

Geo, Glory, and Gilbert

She’s had triplets on her and she could use the break.  It’s been a hard year on all of the moms with the poor pasture quality due to the drought.

Ava

I hauled all three of them up with Perdita and blocked the hole I think the other two boys escaped from.

Perdita looking for a new escape route

Tonight, I’ll try to get Joy’s boys again.

Joy

After my hands get used to all of them, I’ll think about adding Caroline to my milking.

Chunky and Caroline

Or maybe Cutie.

Cutie with Sylvia and Simone

Eventually I’ll be milking all of them (hopefully in just a few days.)  In another month or so, I can start milking Zinnia.

Zinnia

Maybe I’ll see about training Onyx.

Onyx–love that perfect udder

Bring on the milk!  Time to make cheese!

A Nice Walk

6 Jul

That’s all I wanted–a nice walk in pasture.  For some reason, this spring has been exhausting and I haven’t been out walking in pasture as much as I like.  I just wanted to go for a nice walk and take a few pictures for the blog.  It didn’t take me long to locate the goats, but I kept hearing yells like someone was stuck or lost.

It didn’t take long to figure out that there were goats on the wrong side of the fence.

Yeah, I never got around to hauling all those posts out and setting them like I was going to.  I decided to take the rest of the herd to the front half of pasture because I really didn’t want to have them trying to join the troublemakers.

following me back down the hill (Popcorn in the lead)

I kept calling to the goats, and to my surprise, I had some of them come on the run from the wrong side of the fence.

Bubbles and Missy followed by Margarita

In fact, one of the first ones through was Hera who had been on the other side.

Hera

Once we got down there, I closed the gates.  They just headed off to browse some more.

Because I was still hearing someone yell, I had to go back to see if they were stuck in the fence or on the wrong side.  Well, I wasn’t even very close when I saw Perdita free herself from the fence and come running.  She must have wanted to join the others and thought it was like Platform 9 3/4 from Harry Potter.  Luckily, they can’t just walk through the fence (although it does seem like they can at times).

Perdita

Unfortunately, I also heard more goats on the other side.

Trace yelling; Purl’s back side; someone in the corn

This group was not as easy.  It was mostly young ones.  I climbed over and tried heading them in the direction Hera and the other had come back through.  But then there were more farther down the field.  I finally caught Trace and drug her along the fence kicking and screaming while I was calling to the other goats.  It worked.  They came too.  Finally, I climbed back over because I gave up.  I kept calling and started heading back to the gate because I was getting overheated and was ready to just leave them for the coyotes.  Then they popped over the hill and passed me.

When I caught up and got to the bottom, I opened the gate for them.

Yes, Caroline is panting on the rock.  I didn’t really care because I was panting too.

Anyhow, it was time to head down the ditch to see if Perdita had found a way to sneak under the gate and join the rest of the herd.

Nope.  In fact she had a couple of other little stinkers with her on the wrong side.

Chunky, Tawny, and Perdita

I climbed the fence and started herding them back towards the gate.  I swear I had to boop Perdita on the bum with every step to keep her walking.

Finally, we got to the gate.  I opened it for them, and they walked through; although, it took a bit of coaxing because it did look a bit different.

We headed back towards the herd.  The kids were calling for their moms.  Finally Caroline answered Chunky, and all three took off running.

I kind of have the feeling she was chewing him out and asking where the heck he’d been because she told him to stick close and follow her under the fence to go into the corn field.

Anyhow, I had a walk, but it was not a nice calm one like I had hoped for, and they are shut off the back half of pasture until further notice.