Monday, August 26, 2013

Changes


There have been some exciting changes lately. In short I've gone "all studs" and currently only have male breeding animals, and focus is back to fiber.
I will no longer keep this blog up to date, as it's too much with several blogs. 
Please see my main blog/website for further updates, and up to date info on current status. www.friggjasetr.com
Hope to see you there.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Waiting game

They say patience is a virtue, and I'm definitely getting that "muscle" exercised these last couple of days.
Trinity was due yesterday, but still no action. She seems to be ready to go at any minute, but so far is holding out on me. I figured I might as well make a quick post instead of restlessly phasing back and forth to the barn.
Last night was very cold, with frost again, and so it is this morning. No wonder she is holding out on me. I wouldn't want to "pop" either with this cold.
She was on the later side last year as well, so not worried yet. Everything seems to be fine, she's just picking her moment.

Smiley is doing very well with her twins. She's a great mom, and has plenty of milk for them. They are happy and healthy, and driving the rest of the girls nuts. Especially Fulla, who has been the baby until now. She's not too crazy about that not being the case anymore, although she is very sweet to them. It will be interesting to see how she reacts once her mom gives birth. Should be a good learning lesson for her. Mom is locked up in the kidding pen now, so there hopefully won't be too much separation anxiety. They still lay next to each other.

Tryggur is also very pregnant, but not due until between mid next week and end of month. She was bred several times, as she seemed to be coming back into heat, and the boys were still interested after the first breeding. From the looks of it, the first breeding might have taken. She's very heavy, and is starting to have a hard time moving around. She likes to hang out, outside in her corner, especially if the sun is out.
I am very impressed with her first udder. It looks gorgeous!! Will see if I can get a picture of it before she freshens. If everything else is as perfect as that, I could not ask for more. She might very well be my best doe. She's strong in every way, and has a wonderful temperament. And now I feel bad for saying that, as the others are also very good. I don't know why, but she does have a special spot in my heart.

It's also time to start thinking about which ones will stay and which ones could be for sale. I have to keep a small flock, and will have to muster every single once of strength not to keep them all. I still have plenty time to think. Not sure if that's necessarily a good thing, as it is quite gut wrenching.

A very good friend sent me a wonderful surprise in the mail the other day; Mary Oliver's Why I Wake Early. I have some to treasure these poems tremendously, and keep the book on the kitchen table, to read a poem every morning. This is one of my favorites:

Why I Wake Early
Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who make the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and the crotchety -

best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light -
good morning, good morning, good morning.

Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.


Sunday, April 14, 2013

Twin doelings for Smiley

On Monday early evening, Smiley had a beautiful set of twin doelings. Everything went very well and without drama. I saw she was getting ready as I was starting the barn chores, and by the time I was done, she was ready to give birth. How brave and stoic she was for a first timer, and a wonderful mom.
They are all doing very well, and mom has plenty milk and is very attentive to them. Wonderful first time freshener. It couldn't be any better.

Today they have been out for the first time. Little by little, and eventually will be with the rest of the gang full time. It better be soon, as I need the private stall for Trinity, who is getting close to her due date.

Here they are today, romping around. The cutest little things. And dad is a proud dad. One of them in particular, looks very much like him when he was born. My beautiful Baldur has sired twin girls on his first "job".


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Spring for sure!

Today has been a most perfect day in every way. Spring is here, and you can definitely feel it in the air now. It's going to stick around now I think.
With the temperature on the milder side, and plenty sunshine, today has been a perfect day for outside work. The first full day of being outside, working, getting the hands dirty, using a winter tired body, is the most refreshing thing. You feel like a completely new person, even though you're tired to the bones.
It's been a good day for spring cleaning in the barn, and I spent pretty much all day doing that. I don't know how many trips with the wheel barrel I did, but it was a lot. All old bedding out, put down some lime and DE, and some new straw and we're good to go. I'm so glad I got a chance to do it before the kidding starts, so the kids can get a "fresh" start.

 Yesterday I got a call that the baby chicks were ready to be picked up, so was busy with that. Had everything ready, and it was just a matter of heating up their box, then went and picked them up. They all seem healthy and happy, and are getting used to the routines around here. I got a new breed this time around, Speckled Sussex, and am very excited to see how they'll turn out. They're beautiful hardy birds. The other breeds are the ones I always get, Buff Orpingtons, Barred Rocks and Silverlaced Wyandottes. For some reason they just work, and I really love them.


As I was getting the chicks situated, I saw some scrap material I had laying around, I decided to make some more room in the feed room. After some measurements, cutting and screws, I ended up with a couple of perfect benches for the goats. One for the girls and one for the boys. They like to things to lounge and jump on.



On Monday we start counting days till Smiley is due, and keeping an extra eye on her. April is going to be a very exciting month around here, with plenty healthy kids let's hope.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sprouting

Why on earth would anybody want to start sprouting you might ask. We're not grazers after all. :-) Well, I've been sprouting for a little while now, and it seems with great success. I use the Sproutmaster, and really like it. It's easy to use and clean, and can easily be stacked with several trays if needed.

So far I've sprouted Alfalfa and Wheat Berries, and both are delicious. Since I'm not a great cook, I still have to try it out in various receipts. Like that's going to happen. :-) I like to use it on bread, just drizzle it on top of whatever I put on. It's actually great on egg salad. And I've  been known to just "graze" it as a light snack when I feel the urge. Or throw it in smoothies seems to work very well too.

The goats also love it, and it's great for them when they don't have access to pasture, during winter. I mix it in with my homemade feed and they love it. I tried sprouting feed for them, but they don't seem to like it sprouted, not the whole thing. So long as the feed mix is dry, and some sprouts mixed in, they eat it with joy.

Why did I start this? I want real food that is jam packed with vitamins and minerals. Last but not least, I want to know that no chemicals have been used, and have control with what kind of seeds are used as well. It can't get much better, believe me.

I'm to the point of researching a big spouting system for the barn, i.e. enough to feed the critters. Still debating though. It needs space, but not too much, and during the winter it would have to be moved inside. Still on the fence on this. If I do it, will most likely build my own. There are plenty of plans to be had out there. Unless I can find one that is small enough. Many of the system they sell tend to be on the bigger side.
If you were ever curious about sprouting, give it a try. It's really easy, and very good for you. :-)

Just seeded
Sprouted Wheat Berries

Sprouted Alfalfa