Hats off to Sandy & the Goat Kids

Our earnest attempts to ready the farm for heavy winds were not even tested. We feel lucky and are concerned for so many people of the Atlantic and Caribbean who are not.

One vows to be better at taking days off. Then Sandy knocks on the door. We “battened down the hatches” on the variety of mobile shelters with animals we left on pasture and marched the chickens and goats scheduled  for processing and a trip to the butcher for their final move into the barnyard.

The hoop houses have a new bolt and tie system as a redundant check on the roll up sides. Hoop houses are not insurable for good reason and as the memos on the wires preparing for the storm reminded… the best thing one can do is not allow any breach. Nice initiative Anna. 2013’s garlic now occupies a good portion of the original garden, thanks to Liva and Lauren’s Friday night push. And our many treasures (inherited used roofing material, scrap lumber, lengths of row cover, carts and vessels) are tucked away for the season or trapped down by boulders. After what seems like 48 hours of buzzing around at the pace of antique movies, Keystone Kops of the farm, Laura and Mari re-assert the vow not to accumulate so much and store what we need well. Forrest is underway with a long-planned project to tuck some sheds into the barnyard which will help us keep our vows!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Suddenly, the time arrived to send this year’s beautiful herd of goat kids to Royal Butcher. Our chat with Royal and the USDA inspector confirmed our observations; the goats had grown quickly and well. They have lovely coats and were so strictly grass-fed that they were almost impossible to bribe into the trailer with grain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As in year’s past, this group was adorable and brought joy and great learning to many who crossed their paths.  They leave their mark, not only on our hearts, but also on our land. They did a great job re-opening pasture and forest edge and improving the grass for the goats of the future. Special thanks to Lauren for leading their care. Hats off to Kenya, Kilimanjaro, Paine, Pisgah, Elbrus, Everest, General Stark, Marcy, Mansfield, Kathadin, K2, Half Dome and Tamalpais; we thank you for all that you give in life and death.

 “The mountains! the mountains! we greet them with a song, 
Whose echoes rebounding their woodland heights along, 
Shall mingle with anthems that winds and fountains sing. “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We did keep two of this year’s kids, Pico and Annapurna remain, chosen for their potential to be

Pico, regal from a young age

good milkers. You can see them in the barnyard as they transition from being part of a kid goat herd to part of the milking herd.