If I was a rich girl…

milk and eggs is better than gold and I know.

We like to talk about how we are rich. Hey, one more positive thing right? While we don’t get insane amounts of milk and eggs, not enough to really sell, barter or trade for things, we get enough that we are rich. We are rich in ice cream. We are rich when we eat breakfast from our eggs and our pork. We are almost rich in cheese. I am still working on that. We are rich. One day this fall we will be rich in lamb. Maybe one day our chickens will decide to go broody and hatch us out some chicken. We are rich in each other. We are rich in lettuce and greens right now. The broccoli is heading out also. We are rich in grass, which is really making the animals happy right now. When you look at the world this way, things change. While I still wish in some ways we were rich in the money sense(it would be nice to have a root cellar and a few other things) I would rather be rich the way we are. Not that it didn’t take a decent amount of money and time and hard work to get rich like this. 

Right now we are so rich in grass that we are moving animals a lot. I know I have posted this a few times now. Something was confusing me though. Goats go into heat in the fall. That way they can have spring babies. A lot of our goats were showing signs of heat. I asked some goat experts and no one had any ideas. However, a few of them also said that their goats were going into heat. Why? 

Jack finally had the idea that they were being flushed. Usually goat owners will flush their goats right before breeding. It just means to give them extra high nutrition. It makes them go into a stronger heat, and just in general be REALLY healthy. Now, it totally makes sense why so many goats are going into heat around here. The grass is high, it is heading out(lots of grain seed) and the goats are eating like there is no tomorrow. They have been flushed by nature. This is where the geek in me shows through. I can’t believe that nature would bring animals into heat so they could give birth right before it gets cold again. Jack brought up the point that mid fall isn’t that much different than early spring. By a couple of weeks goats were pretty hardy and could weather winter well. I am curious to see if we have a late winter or a mild winter though. It is a theory that I am not sure if I want to test out by letting a goat get pregnant right now. Fiona though is showing signs and she never bred this year. She would be a goat to try. However, I have to say that a part of me doesn’t want to try this because that means milk through the winter. Uhhh, not fun. Though it would be nice to have hot chocolate every morning. Sigh, to be rich in hot chocolate…

We did take steps on Monday to make sure that no one got pregnant before their time. Paddy and Abe got moved in with the boys. It seems that they can still get out though. This morning we woke up to mostly cloudy skies after it raining, and hard, most of the night. I opened the window in our bedroom and Bridget was barking. It is funny how you get to hear the difference in animal sounds. With the dogs there is  a “Hey! Go away! You don’t belong here!” bark, a “Hey! I’m really scared because you didn’t listen to my other bark!” a “Danger! Danger! Something is not right here!!” What was odd was that it was just Bridget. I didn’t hear Conner at all. Conner is in the shelter with the babies who get put up at night. Bridget is really close though, less than 10 feet and she could see into the shelter. I got dressed quickly and went out. She calmed down as soon as she saw me walking out. I have to admit I was really worried about what I was going to find. Her bark was telling me that something was really truly wrong. In her eyes, as protector of all living things on the farm, there was something really wrong. Abe and Paddy were trying to get into the fence with all the rest of the babies. It was super cute. More cute because Abe had never been put in with the babies, he is angora so his mom never got milked. He just followed his new friend. Conner was totally quiet because he was playing with them. He felt he had things under control I am sure. I picked up Abe and Jack started to get Paddy. Whenever Paddy called out Abe answered. It was very sweet the bond they already shared. They are back in with the boys again. They seem to be doing alright but I am sure we are going to find them wandering the farm again. Hopefully Bridget lets us know.

There were a few pictures taken this last time we moved the animals. We did an even smaller area this time. Mostly because it is taking them longer than it feels like it should to go through the grass. No, it isn’t fun moving them every couple of days, or maybe it is, but it is still a lot of work. Oh to be rich in fences…

The grass here up against the tent was up to the bottom of the windows, almost as high as the fence. There is still a decent amount of woody stems from the grass, but all grass is gone. 

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Where they went next, the other side of the tent. Again the grass covers most of them when they first get in there.

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They trample a lot of grass but that still helps. The grass will break down and become organic material. Still fertilizes the ground. It is all good.

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Here you can see our small greenhouse. They are fenced out of it, but it is close. So close that it is currently hard to get into the greenhouse. 

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All the babies!!! Knonsu is doing so much better. More often than not all of his legs are down. That makes me so happy. All of Luna’s babies are small compared to the singles we had, but they all seem great. 

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Want to talk about richness? I was driving Joan home from the farmer’s market last week and I asked her what all the flowering trees were. I will learn eventually what everything is, it just takes time. She told me that they were the black locusts and the flowers were edible. SO! We went out to see how edible they were. A lot of edible things may be edible but ummm not good. That is probably the nicest thing to say. Anyway we tried some and yes, good. Sweet and kind of pea like. After some looking around I found that they are slightly medicinal also. So now we are rich in black locust flowers. I made two tinctures, a honey and a syrup. I also made some pancakes. I am going to try an oil next. The smell of these flowers is so amazing. Turns out we have a small grove of black locusts that we didn’t know about last year.

Being very serious about the amazing flowers. 

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Eating them right off the stem.

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So things are good here. I can see the grass heading out on the areas that the animals were in just last week. They may take it down to very little left but it recovers faster than anything. We are seeing insane amounts of worms all over also. I feel really good about improving the soil around here. It is great. I feel very happy that my animals are thriving, even though it has been very wet out there.  Oh and one other thing of note. Megan is now at Shagbark. Shagbark has higher fences and more adults to help with a crazy milking doe. Natalie was good with it, Megan was her favorite. I think she felt, and I totally understand this, that while she may not want to deal with Megan anymore, she didn’t feel good about giving her to someone who she didn’t know. She would rather have her here than off to some unknown where the people may get real sick of her and just eat her. So when Joan offered to take Megan I could almost see Natalie breath easy. Megan was not a good fit over here. Shagbark seems to be able to handle her a little better. Though she has already gotten out once. Still, I think it worked out best for all of us. 

So take a little time today to think of how you are rich and feel lots of gratitude. There is richness all about us and I think we would all be happier if we would just see it ❤

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