We are about to be hit by "A Blizzard" if the weather people here locally are right. The light snow is to start tonight, with periods of freezing rain tomorrow off and on, and the real event will be Tuesday. I did errands yesterday and then ran to the feed store late to get stocked up. We have about a bale and a half of hay for the llamas, but it is not good hay, so we are going to run down to Tongie tomorrow to the feed store (well, Keith will) to get a couple of better quality ones to keep the llamas well fed during the storm.
Inca has always laid down to eat her sheep feed out of her bowl, and now she has taught Aztec to lay and eat his feed, too! He has developed a good warm coat of wool at almost three months old (Thursday).
Of course, I'm overjoyed to be planning on shoveling the drive again.
Keith and I have long talked of having goats here at Calamity Acres. We would joke about having "spoiled little goats"... but then seriously began to talk about it a year ago. I wanted to milk and make cheese and ice cream, having tasted some goat milk ice cream and really liking it. I made two trips to goat dairies, and hope to continue talking to Roxanne at Screamin' Oaks dairy right down the road from us.... but I have also been reading blog after blog after blog for information as well as several books.
I wish some of you who currently have goats would comment... because frankly, I'm getting scared. I'm wondering if it's best that I just buy milk from Roxanne and make my cheese and ice cream with it, and forego the whole goat experience. I know they are captivating, but I have read so many stories of terrible birthing incidents that I don't know if I am ready to handle this at this point, and they are freaking me out!
For once, we have actually planned to have the infrastructure in place first, since the thing that I get spoken to the most is "infrastructure, infrastructure, infrastructure". I was guilty of it in the old days, too... would go to a poultry auction and come home and have to make pens before I could let the birds loose. We are building a new henhouse in the garden, and planned to switch the big henhouse over to a goathouse for three goats. We do know they have to freshen yearly, and we think we will have a market for those kids with the number of Mexican families in our area who eat cabrito (don't like to think of that, but a necessity). There are also many 4 H kids around here, and we would have purebreds for projects. However, I am chickening out, and am almost afraid to read more, because I am getting too much knowledge!
If any of you have had positive experiences with goats, we would love to hear about it, and the negative, too... we want to go into this with our eyes opened. My cousin Charlene has had them for years, but kept three that were not milked, just as pets. She highly recommended them.
I feel I should say that our purpose here is NOT to make money off of the goats... nothing here is a money-making deal, we are hobbyists, who are interested in sustainability and providing a lot of our food for us and for our families. But we treat our animals as respectfully as possible, even the llamas, and especially the birds, dogs and cats.
So if you have goats, or have had, we would love to hear comments about them!