Helicopter Ears


Macie, our doeling, doing her best impression of a helicopter:

A bit faster, and she might get enough lift to take off!

As the snow melted in this  glorious sunny day, she and her brothers ventured out of the barn to frolic.  More pictures are on our facebook page.

They’re 11 days old today and growing quickly – the largest buck is 17.4 lbs, while the smallest is 14.8.

Baby Goats Grow Quickly!


The baby goats are now 5 days old and growing quickly, already skipping around the barn (they’re saving their pasture skipping for when the snow melts).  We’ve posted more pics on our facebook page, but here are a couple of them:

 

A Different Kind of Doula


When we’re not tending the farm or homeschooling the kids, we’ve got “real world” jobs.  My (Martha’s) passion is being a childbirth educator and a doula – Greek for “servant” – a woman who comes alongside families before, during, and after childbirth.  You can read more about what I do on my webpage for my business, “A Joyful Birth.”

So today, I was a different kind of doula. I was much more involved with the wet, cuddly newborn side of birth than I usually am as we welcomed baby goats on our farm. We are relatively new to farming, but I was struck by how many similarities there are in birth among mammals.

Momma Goat with Babies

These mamas craved safety and peace as all mothers in labor do. One of the mamas appreciated my quiet presence, reaching out to nuzzle me — and then after the babies were born, she gently butted me and told me to get out. Each mama “counted fingers and toes” on her baby, licking them dry from head to toe. They also encouraged their babies to nurse when they were ready, patiently giving them time to transition from womb to world. And, like I often see with human babies, they were ready to nurse at about the one hour mark after birth. Goats have a special vocalization that they only make to their new babies. Amazing how wondrous birth is!

I am blessed to have seen birth in its completely natural state (well, except five quiet family members watching) and will ponder the lessons from today to see how I can bring that to my human doula work too.

New Goat Babies!


This is just a quick post (you can check out our Facebook page for more photos) to announce that in the middle of this huge snowstorm, we took a break from other subjects for a biology lesson. We now have four brand new baby Boer Goats – 3 bucklings and a doeling.

We’re busy making sure they are all settled for a cold night, and will post more later!

Blessings to all,

The Flying T

“Tommy” by Rudyard Kipling


This is one of my all-time favorite poems, and I thought I’d post it for a change of pace.

“Tommy”

by Rudyard Kipling

I went into a public-‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play,
The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play.

I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
They gave a drunk civilian room, but ‘adn’t none for me;
They sent me to the gallery or round the music-‘alls,
But when it comes to fightin’, Lord! they’ll shove me in the stalls!
For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, wait outside”;
But it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide,
The troopship’s on the tide, my boys, the troopship’s on the tide,
O it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide.

Yes, makin’ mock o’ uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an’ they’re starvation cheap;
An’ hustlin’ drunken soldiers when they’re goin’ large a bit
Is five times better business than paradin’ in full kit.
Then it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, ‘ow’s yer soul?”
But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.

We aren’t no thin red ‘eroes, nor we aren’t no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An’ if sometimes our conduck isn’t all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don’t grow into plaster saints;
While it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, fall be’ind”,
But it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind,
There’s trouble in the wind, my boys, there’s trouble in the wind,
O it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind.

You talk o’ better food for us, an’ schools, an’ fires, an’ all:
We’ll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don’t mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow’s Uniform is not the soldier-man’s disgrace.
For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!

Ready for Kidding – DIY Pens and Warming Huts


We pasture bred our two older Boer does in October, so we don’t have a tight date on when they’re due but it’s going to be soon.  The girls are double-wide, their udders are filling out, and Jessie in particular has started to spend a lot of her time lying down, moaning softly.  Good thing I got some time today (after the 4-H activities this morning) to finish up the kidding stalls and warming huts.

The girls were a bit nervous about the new digs, and squished into one stall together for a bit. They calmed down later.

As I wrote earlier, we made the stalls primarily out of recycled hard plastic pallets.  However, I got preoccupied with other chores and projects once I got the walls up, so it wasn’t until this week I was able to get the doors completed.  I made those doors out of new lumber, mostly because I wanted them to be relatively clean and nail free.

A better view of the door.

You might notice that the center “bar” is connected differently.  My plan is, once the kids are older, to remove that center piece and add another one offset to the side to make a barrier for our creep feeder.  The idea is to have an opening small enough for the kids to get through to free-feed on grain, but tight enough to keep the greedy adults out.  The next trick is to design a feeder to put in the stall that the kids can get to, but the ducks and chickens can’t.  That will be a trick.

One of the two warming huts

The warming huts are salvaged 55-gallon poly drums, cut at the 2/3 point.  I cut a circular hole in the top for the warming lamps, then used sheet metal screws to mount the brooder lamp fixture.  The huts are screwed into the stall divider (which is made of dimensional lumber) to keep the adults from knocking them over.

So now we wait…

We’re on Facebook


Nothing spectacular for most folks, but the Flying T now has its own Facebook page.  Please stop by!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 195 other followers