Not a Prince, But It’s Cute

Apparently there is an open space around one of the window air conditioning units, since I found this little guy hopping around in the living room tonight.  I have a soft spot for little frogs, so I took a couple of pictures.

Grey Tree Frog inside 2 crop

It’s a “Grey tree frog”, even though this individual is mostly green.  I’ve found a couple of these while I’ve been out and about gardening.

Grey Tree Frog inside crop

More often then not I hear them rather than see them, since their coloring allows them to blend in with their surroundings so well…

Grey Tree Frog Back

Another Grey tree frog.  This one -is- actually grey.

…until they move, and then these little patches of bright yellow will show on their back legs.

Grey Tree Frog Climbing

…and here is yet another one hiding near an outdoor faucet.  These little guys seem to really like our place.

038

Peek-a-boo!

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Which Side Is My Bread Buttered On?

This Side, Baby!

Toast Crop

Yesterday, as I reached for a mason jar of goat’s milk, I noticed that a large amount of cream had risen to the top over the last couple of days.  I looked at another jar, and saw the same thing.  All together, I thought it looked like it might be enough to try making a little bit of butter.

I hadn’t done this before, but I had seen this video.  Check it out, and see how easy it is to do this!

The Result:

First Butter_crop

It’s bright white!  Since goats process the beta-carotene in fresh green grass/leaves differently than cows do, so the butter and cheeses you make with their milk won’t be yellow without an added dye.  (In fact, a lot of butter made with cow’s milk has a natural annatto dye added if the cows that it came from weren’t grazing fresh grass.  Customers expect yellow butter, hence the added coloring.)

Yellow or not, it’s is so, so tasty…  Try it some time and see!

 

 

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Dairy Days!

Since some of the little goats are weaned, it’s time to start milking!

Clarissa Bag Side View crop

Clarissa’s udder side view.

Here’s where it all starts!  These little goats are short, so I milk into a little stainless steel bowl, then transfer it to a mason jar for safe/clean keeping in the fridge, until it goes into a steel pan for pasteurization.

Dairy Thermometer 1

The dairy thermometer is your friend!  You will need it to make sure the milk reaches the necessary temperature for pasteurization and that it stays at that temperature for long enough to render the milk safe to use.

Dairy Thermometer 2

Once this is done you will need to chill the milk down quickly.  I have done this by placing the covered pot in an ice bath in a very clean sink.  Once the milk is cold, I pop it in the fridge.

Milk Jar

So there it is!  Fresh, tasty, milk that is chemical-free, full of nutrients and is still non-homogenized which means it’s excellent for making that other tasty treat:  CHEESE.

We’ll get to that in another post.

 

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New Baby Goats!

Firecrystal finally had her kids!  We’ve been watching her closely for the last couple of weeks and after a few false alarms, she has given us two beautiful babies  Both are adorable and doing great!

Crystal nd the Fam

Firecrystal and The Kids

 

Crystal's Girl Crop 3

Firecrystal’s Doeling

The birth went smoothly…once I got the little doeling out.  She popped out head first with both front legs back, so she needed a little help.

Crystal's Boy Crop 1
Firecrystal’s Buckling

Then this little guy slipped right out, all ready to be part of the world.

Nigella

Life is beautiful isn’t it?

What’s new in your corner of the world?

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Tiny Surprise

I found something extra in the watering pitcher…

Toad Swimming Small

Wee Toad

Apparently the little cutie was trapped in there.  Of course, I fished it out and turned it loose.

Toad in the Hand Small

A Toad in the Hand.

That is all!

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The Hound

Whatisitwhatisitwhatisit?

Meet Jasper… Once he settles down a bit.

He’s a Border Collie/Australian Shepherd Mix, and as you might expect from that, he’s a very high-energy dog.  He did inherit the infamous Border Collie stare.  Once something has his attention he LOCKS ON.  His entire attention and being is focused on whatever has interested him.  I see this often when we are out playing with a ball or a frisbee.

The Stare Small

I see the squeaky-toy. I want the squeaky toy. I AM the squeaky toy… Throwitnowplease.

…and again.

Homing In Small

Homing in.

What can I say, he takes “fetch” seriously…  Not that he lets me have the ball every time or anything…  We’re working on that.

Sitting still... This is rare.

Sitting still without being asked.  This is rare.

He’s hyper but we love him.  What a good boy!

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The Goats Crack Me Up Sometimes…

SNIFF-A-SNIFF-A-SNOR-A-SNORF

As hard as I try to get good pictures of the goats, this is the shot I get a lot of the time. They are NOSY, and it makes them the ultimate photo-bombers.

I was also treated to this view the other day…  Apparently some grain sifted down behind the trough…

I just know there's more grain in here!

Don’t worry nobody got stuck…

I’ll end with a picture of our very, very pregnant Adorabelle…

They say there's no such thing as being a little bit pregnant. I think there might be such a thing as being VERY pregnant though...

Adorabelle, shortly before she gave us twins this spring.

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So what else do you folks do?

Well, in addition to keeping the goats we garden, do crafts and keep a few types of poultry.

guinea-cock-small.jpg

Royal Purple Guinea

Guinea Hen_copysmall

sleepy keets small

The guinea keets are sleepy! Zzz…

These are the ones you’ll probably hear first if you visit our place…  Guineas are loud, but I love having them.  They are good for insect/tick control, plus, they crack me up the way they run around all over the place.  The picture on the top shows a male.  You can tell by it’s larger crest and wattles or “gills” as they are sometimes called.

Cats and chickens small

Part of our flock plus some barn cats

Of course we had to get a bunch of chickens too…  It’s great having a constant source of fresh, free-range eggs.

stil eatin'_copy

Our chickens while still in their little brooder  Cute and fluffy!

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention our garden.  We love to grow all sorts of flowers. vegetables and fruits.  Below are some images from gardens past:

Poppy 4

Poppy.

Ye Olde Irise

Iris

Forsythia Close

Forsythia

Viola

Viola

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Nicotiana

Verbena pale

Verbena

Tithonia

Tithonia – So cheerful…  They’re ORANGE!

Pussy Willow Full Bloom 1

Pussy-willow catkin

Pussy Willow Stamens 2

Pussy-willow catkin, uber-closeup! AK.A. “Someone was playing around with the macro lens.”

Rhubarb Egg

Rhubarb, Rhubarb,rhubarb… Can you say it five times fast?

Live-Forever-Plant

Live-Forever Plant

Seed Packets

The seed order came! The Seed Order Came!

Verbena

I have a soft spot for verbenas…

Zucchini

Tiny Zucchini

Pepper Profusion

Pepper Profusion!

Canteloupe flower

Cantaloupe Flower

Melon!

Cantaloupe in training

Asparagus Tail

Asparagus spears in various stages of maturity. I think there might be something wrong with the one in front…

So…  When I’m not taking care of the above, I’m crafting or canning.

first-2-ply-closeup2

The first actually usable hand-spun yarn I made on my wheel.

Brambles (2)

A tam I made for my mother. The pattern is a free one from Ravelry called “Brambles

Brambles

Loud Socks

Loud socks in progress!

Canning 3

Homemade Goodness!

Posted in Canning and Home Preserving, Chickens, Gardening, Goats, Guineas, Kniting, Photography, Spinning | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Tiny Goats For Sale 2017

Well, here we are looking at the first post of a brand new farming blog.  I’m excited to get started and hope you enjoy your visit here.

Enough of that though!  You are probably here to see adorable pictures of this year’s baby goats.  Worry not, I can totally hook you up.  Welcome to the almost unbearable cuteness of baby Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats.  At this moment all of the goats on this page are available, except for Janey.  I will update this page as needed.

Below is Red Clover Iota’s Kid, Janie.  The sire was Woodland Trails Roger.

Butterbean Let Me In-20170217

Red Clover Janie – Born 2/8/17 – Doe – Retained for Now

Here are Cloven Trail Clarissa’s Kids.  The Sire was Woodland Trails Roger

White Tail 2

Red Clover White-Tail – Born 4/11/17 – Buck – Available

Smiley 1

Red Clover Smile – Born 4/11/17 – Buck – Available

Now we have Woodland Trails Tinkerbell’s babies.  Sire is Woodland Trails Roger.

Blue Eyes 1

Red Clover Gingersnap – Born 4/19/17 – Buck – Available

Bandito 2

Red Clover Bandit – Born 4/19/17 – Buck – Available

Woodland Trails Maybelle’s kids are next.  Sire is Woodland Trails Roger.

Maybelle's Girl

Red Clover Praline – Born 4/21/17 – Doe – Available

Top-Knot

Red Clover Top-Knot – Born 4/21/17 – Doe – Available

The most recent ones are Woodland Trails Adorabelle’s Kids.  Here again, Roger was the sire.  We haven’t put names on these yet.  Actually, none of the names we’ve put on any of the kids are really written in stone yet.

Dora's Boy

Dora’s Boy – Born 5/1/17 – Buck – Available

Dora's Girl

Dora’s Girl – Born 5/1/17 – Doe – Available

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