Monday, April 16, 2018

We have kid goats!

Finally after checking for weeks on our two does due in the end of March/ first part of April we have kids! The first doe actually delivered her single buck on her due date. This is Cortney's goat and last year her udder only gave milk from one teat, so was assumed she only had one working teat to rely on and she produced well enough to feed triplets, and we only had to supplement one for a few weeks. This year guess what, she has milk in both teats, the one side is not as developed yet but she has more than plenty for her single and us!

The other doe was a first time mama and she went into labor quick, I'd been checking her throughout the day because she was off her feed and unhappy, so figured it was beginning labor. I'd checked her at 9pm and she was standing, no sign of active labor at 9:30pm I went out and as I was walking toward the barn I hear her pushing and crying out, so I run and she already had the first one 3/4 of the way delivered and the second one had one front leg and the head out( in between the first buck's hind legs. I cleared the nose and set him in front of  the doe, she began cleaning him off while she pushed out the second buck and I cleared the nose and began drying him off and stimulating him. I also set him in front of her and she was cleaning off both. The doe ( Cocoa)  began pushing again and within 3-4 pushes, she delivered a beautiful little doe. Because she was a first time mama and had triplets, the female had weak front knees, we gave goat drench and selenium to them and also iodine( on the underside of the tails) because the first buck had a small goiter on his neck. The does had free choice minerals and also kelp in their grain for a week before they delivered but with triplets sometimes there are deficiencies. Here are pictures of the triplets the morning after they were born.
The one on the left is the first buck and the other is the doe. We taped their ears, as they were folded and within a week removed the tape and their ears are fine. 

This is the second buck, he has great color. 

This is the second buckling at 1-1/2 weeks old!
Here are the two bucks

Closer up of the first buck.
This is the doe, she's doing better everyday, in fact today there is a 100% improvement in her front legs, she's running and bouncing along with her brothers. We are still giving her drench and massaging and stretching her front legs daily. 
The one jumping on the left is the doe! 

We are thankful for health kids and does and we have one more doe to kid the beginning of June, she is our older doe and she had triplets last Spring and we decided to give her some extra time to recover before breeding her again. Plus we wanted to have one later so we can have fresh milk to drink longer into the winter. Normally we dry off the does for breeding the end of Nov. beginning of Dec. The goal is to have two does fresh in early Spring and two in mid Summer. 
We can't wait to make cheese again and also goats milk soap, we're almost out of last years stockpile. 

There are never any dull moments on the homestead and with Montana Spring and time released moisture last week and today into the low 70'sF everything is greening up nicely. Today Cortney and myself worked on cleaning up the garden and a few flowerbeds close to the house. We're supposed  to have more snow and rain mix off and on all this week and a nice weekend. I'm hauling composted manure to the greenhouse so we can work on and get our cold weather crops planted. I love early lettuce, Swiss chard, Kale, radishes, green onions, and garlic.  We also have our seedlings that need transplanting into 4" pots, but will work on those Wens., I work tomorrow.  

Praying all of you are well and enjoying Spring and all that brings. Many blessings for your week. 

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Photo Sunday

 Sometimes it's just fun to study the photo and see how it makes you feel. Sunday is the day of rest and we pray you enjoy some photos of things from our weekly routine( taken from various weeks and months)  If you'd like to know more about certain photos just comment and we'll do our best to share what the photo is of and why we took it.  Many blessings for your new week.

Monday, March 5, 2018

So many blessings and changes. Hello from MT, I know.....

it's been a long time since our last post. Yes this blog has been inactive for some time now and we've most likely lost subscribers and pray they find us once again.

Where to begin, I'd say the beginning, right?  Since our last post we've had a lot of changes, ALL are blessings, even those that challenge us. Our focus has always been on our faith, we, sadly took the wide path for many years to avoid, well.... uncomfortable situations and we've been convicted for those situations and how we may have handled them. First we forgot our grounding rod, our center,  our faith that our savior is always there. The world wants to convince us that we can control the things around us, when in faith we know we can not and need prayer and supplication and a strong personal relationship with God. There is no aspect of our lives that He is not interested in, and longs for us to come to Him in prayer, seek His counsel, love and protection. While some may know some of the things that happened in our lives, the ONLY one who knows all of it, the good, the bad and the ugly is God, our savior.

Many things have made us the family we are now, there has been health issues with our daughter, my Mom. Job stressors, a new job for me( outside the home and farm), worldly family issues, accidents, death, money issues and alike. We all have them to a degree or another but it's how you deal with these circumstances that make you who you are. Sadly we admit that our reactions to some of these circumstances was not what it should have been and there has been a ripple effect. Some circumstances came to us with the ripples already in place and we floundered to make sense of this and all the while we should have been turning in prayer to God before reacting at all. When we face challenges, it's an opportunity for spiritual growth, a refining of sorts. We failed some and then we've had other areas that have been such blessings to our life and family.

We'd like to begin sharing our blessings, as well as our struggles. Our prayer is that it will be a blessing to others or at the very least a comfort. Sometimes, the world can make us feel so alone and isolated, when in fact multitudes feel the very same way, and may be facing similar challenges or have blessings to share that they feel no one else would be interested in hearing.

I will share that in re-reading some previous posts, where we were on our path, shows through and this blog will be different, one of encouragement, praise, sharing, comfort, love, interest and some challenges to you the readers as well.

Okay let's share some of our life in the last two years away in pictures( if I can remember how)

                                            God's promise to us all
Cortney's still catching beautiful shots

The passing of our first and beloved, Angel 

Montana storms, fierce and beautiful

A new addition, Cocoa

Yes, we're still gardening, although we've downsized

Still canning, dehydrating and cold storage in the cellar. 

Cortney's hair, it's darker and has more body now

Our granddaughter's plus we also have several adopted grandkids too

New hobby, spinning wool

The last two sheep we own. Snicker( brown) and Doodle

Mike's finally blacksmithing, one of his pieces created for me.

Still producing our own hay, better now with sprinkler irrigation

My love ( Mike), of almost 34 yrs.( this month)

Our new registered Nubian buck, Meeko

A doe who comes back year after year to have her fawns, twins in 2017

Blessings come in red, also yellow( pear crop was wonderful)

Another amazing Montana sky

A cold winter's flight, taken by Cortney

My Christmas gift, Mike made me a drum carder!

Mike with a nice lake trout, on an away trip.

A forged copper Rose, made by Mike

The loss of a dear friend of Cortney's, Erin, due to cancer.

The loss of a wonderful neighbor, dear friend, adopted Mom and spiritual mentor, Shoney we miss you.

There are many, more photos and stories to share, our prayer is that you'll be back to read and share them.
Blessings for your new week.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Montana Spring and baby animals.

Well, I'm sorry I wasn't able to keep my promise of posting once a week. God had other plans for our family. We've been back and forth to Salt Lake City, UT several times since my last post. Currently Cortney's health is improved and she's been weaned off her high dose anti-seizure medicine, thanks be to God. She will be undergoing MRI's every two months to watch the remaining, inoperable portion of the tumor. We did speak to an Oncologist team in UT a week ago and they said her only option for treatment is Radiation. Well we've also been doing a lot of research into alternative treatments and have been putting some things into play already. Radiation really is not an option for her, you see with her genetic disease, Neurofibromatosis 1 or NF1 her chances increase from a normal person receiving radiation therapy risk of a secondary cancer at 30% her chances increase to 80% for a secondary cancer.  That is why we say we are researching natural ways to help the body heal itself and there is a lot of testimony out there to support this too!  For those of you praying for her and our family, thank you and please continue to do so, it is of great comfort to us all.

Now onto Montana Spring and Spring babies. Montana Spring is truly unpredictable, leaving us with weeks in March and early April with temperatures into the high 70's to low 80's F and now the end of April we've had a week of some much needed moisture, which is a blessing indeed.  This is what my husband terms as "time released moisture" otherwise known as snow! Here is a picture from yesterday

The pastures are emerald green and when the sun and warmth arrives first part f next week, you'll surely be able to stand and watch everything grow. I was worried about our fruit trees, because all are in full bloom, but their is no evidence or damage. Now all we need is warmth and bees to pollinate it all. In the garden we did get our potatoes planted before this moisture and thinned the asparagus as well. We've been enjoying asparagus, rhubarb, chives, green onions and some volunteer lettuce. The plan is to get radishes, spinach, beans and a few other seeds planted when things dry out enough to plant. We hope to get our cabbage and broccoli plants in as well, but have covers available just in case. The tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and some herbs will go into the greenhouse.

Spring babies started arriving for us in early March and we still have a turkey hen setting her nest with hatching due any day. Our goats blessed us again this year. We were a bit concerned with two first time mamas but they did great. We ended up with an even split, three doelings and 3 bucklings. Our one first time mama had triplets but the first two were born dead and the third came our screaming and is doing well. Here are a few pictures of them at a day old and some taken a week or so ago.
 Maggie, our registered Nubian doe, had triplets( 1 female and 2 males) this picture above is one of her bucklings and the picture below is the doeling and other buckling, warming up by the wood cookstove.

 This is Isabelle, she is almost three years old and daughter of Maggie. She had triplets( bucklings) as well, with two being stillborn  :(
 Sadie is also almost three yrs old and blessed us with twin doelings, and lots of color!
They are Alpine Nubian cross.

 Maggie and one buckling( Jasper) and the doeling ( Cinnamon)
 Isabelle's buckling( Panda Bear)
 Sadie and one doeling( Hazel)
 Sadie's other doeling ( Sally)
 Hazel showing off on the big tire!
 This is Maggie's other buckling ( BB, short for bottle baby)
 BB enjoying the warmth of the sun on the tractor tire, after a morning of romping with the other kids
 Nice picture of Jasper
and Cinnamon !
Not a lot new going on right now with our wet weather, but our busy time will soon be hear, so trying to enjoy the last of our slower time. 
Blessings to each of you, as well as good health and productivity on your homesteads.  :)

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