Monday, May 30, 2011


This has been one of the hardest decisions of my life. Morrissey has been sold. Her new owner's trainer will be picking her up this Thursday.She'll be on her way to New Mexico. I'm so sad to see her go.

She is a wonderful horse and she needs someone who is as passionate about horses as I am about goats. Her new owner was so excited! Right now my emotions are all over the place. I'm going to make sure my last three days with Morrissey are special.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Meant for the Stage

Waiting for the Show
Saturday morning Chris and I woke up an hour late at 5 am, packed the girls into the back of our old trusty Jeep (with a tarp down of course) and headed for Brenham, Texas to the South Central Texas Goat Club's May show.  Despite our late start, We made it in plenty of time. It had been ten years since I'd shown a goat so I was nervous, but it was a blast.

Since, all three of my girls are juniors, or goats that have never been bred, we had to wait until the end of the day for our turn to show. There was a lot of waiting, which meant I had plenty of time to watch and learn. I knew I missed showing, but now I realize how much. It is just exhilarating. I met so many new goat people, and got to connect with several I knew from years ago. I tasted my first goat milk, and got a free tub of delicious chevre. I can't stop eating it of course. I even planned some new purchases for next year's breeding season.
The Line-up

As for the actual show, I didn't have much hope for my girls, because they are so young. I was very surprised when my youngest, Sandra, placed third in her huge class of 21, judged by one of the most respected Nubian breeders in the US, Lynn Fleming of Lynnhaven. Lynn placed Valencia 7th in the class and Leda 14th in the class. I was very pleased with their placings and can't wait to see them progress as they gain maturity.

The other judge wasn't as big of a fan of my girls as Lynn was, but he did place Valencia 8th in her class of 21 as well. I feel like he may have been overwhelmed by the size of the class and he certainly didn't explain his placings as well as Lynn did. To each their own. I can't wait to show my girls to even more judges and see what everyone thinks. What an amazing time!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Weaning Woes

Before you know it, it will be Sandra's turn to be weaned
Leda and Valencia are almost three months old, over forty pounds and eating alfalfa hay very well. To me, this means time to start weaning. At the most, they were drinking 60 ounces twice a day. I've been slowly bringing that number down and now they are both getting about half of that.

The first problem with weaning is that it makes me feel mean. I'm used to giving my babies whatever they want and now I'm telling them no. The "MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA" noises as the barn are reaching a fever pitch. The second problem is that Sandra is on a lambar, meaning she has cooled milk available to her at all hours. Valencia and Leda were both on a lambar when I bought them, but I trained them to take a bottle instead.  Valencia was able to remember how a lambar is used, but Leda wasn't. Since Valencia is such a smarty-pants, I can't leave the lambar open to the whole pen. The biggest problem is that the twins take out their weaning frustrations on poor little Sandra. I had just put the three of them together with good results, and now I have to separate Sandra. Even though she had a bloodied horn bud the other day, she'd still prefer to be with her friends. I've managed to upset all three of the babies, the same week as the show.

Weaning is such a controversial topic in the dairy goat world. Some people will think I'm weaning early, some will think I'm weaning late. I've been told to base weaning on weight, how much food they're eating and more. With so much conflicting information, I'm kind of playing it by ear. I want my girls to develop a good rumen without losing condition. I'm encouraging them to eat more of their medicated feed and less milk. They've got the hay thing down for sure. I'll continue giving them milk until I'm sure they're going to be ok. Wish me luck in this crazy process.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Shave and a Hair Cut

Today was a very productive day. First, Chris and I headed up to my school to pack up most of my classroom. I'm a self-diagnosed children's book hoarder. The weight of my classroom library has reached 'husband has to help move it' status. As soon as we got home and unloaded it, I headed out to Tractor Supply to pick up some clippers for the goats. 
This was only my second ever visit to Tractor Supply and it did not go well. To say the smell was overwhelming is quite the understatement. I had my hands covering my mouth and nose so that I wouldn't faint. I don't have the words to describe how awful it was. The problem is that it was a smell unlike any smell I've ever encountered. It wasn't plant or animal based. It was some sort of chemical. Whatever the source, who would put that smell in their car?!  
I'm not a wimp when it comes to smells. I've spent a fair amount of time around diary goat bucks, it wasn't pleasant, but it wasn't more than I could handle. Once, my bulldog, Coli, got sprayed by a skunk.  I lived in an apartment. Imagine a full on skunk spray in 900 square feet. I even handled that. Tractor Supply is worse.
To make matters worse, the clippers were in a locked case. Luckily, I found an employee before my lungs imploded and I made it out alive. 

Clippers in tow, I headed out to the barn. I bathed the goats, let them dry, and started to clip them. Five hours later, I had successfully transfered some of the hair from two of my goats to myself. I glued most of it on with dirt and sweat. Seriously though, I think they look pretty good since I don't have a milking stand yet, and they are only babies and have never seen or even imagined a set of clippers. They were tied to the fence and scared to death, but we made it through. I'll finish Valencia and Leda and get started on Sandra tomorrow. Feast your eyes on my partially clipped show goats!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Farmish Videos

I know all my farmish followers will love to see my baby goats, (it is the indie rock I'm not so sure about.) Check out my cuties!

Gray Stables: Check Out Our Video!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

To celebrate all the wonderful moms out there, I'm posting a cute picture of me and my kids. 

The girls are getting big. Check out my the posts chronicling their growth over at