Sunday, June 30, 2013

And everything falls into place....

So alot of changes going on here... my goat herd has been cut in half to make room for the primary goats that are the most useful to the homestead... no more novel cute little goats... all the girls here work :-)  they just happen to be super cute too!
And speaking of work,,, our catfish are having to work at feeding time more since the ducks have decided that the catfish food is yummy! We don't really need to feed the catfish, they are HUGE! Buts its a good show!
Catfish Pond at Gods Blessing Farm
NEW Products!!! New Body scrubs!! I've been working on the perfect body scrub formula for over a year now! This is it! its available in my store now in any scent I have available.
Also,  a new lotion and scrub scent... Summer Lovin'...  also working on a goat milk liquid soap to go with this body care set!
And 2 new goat milk soap scents in the Farm Fresh Essentials line I've been working on... this is a very 'green line' of products... more on them later... I want to develop the lotion to go with the soaps before I make it available in the store.
You see I'm not getting any of these 'recipes' for my products out of a book somewhere. I formulate them myself... so sometimes it takes me a while... they are worth the wait though ;-)
Sweet Addiction Body Scrub

Curds learning the ropes young!
I have added Sheep to the farm!!! Which, I can't even believe I have them! I have good things in store for these girls and the milk they will produce! I have 2, with plans to add one more... and ofcourse we had to get a ram to.. he's interesting!
More on the sheep later as they settle in on the homestead better.

Hope you're having a happy Sunday and enjoying the beautiful day we've been blessed with!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Little Victories... and Big

My last couple of posts might have been alittle bit down.. its been a challenging year... but this is a happy post.. Now notice the plate of food here... it ain't the prettiest plate of food. But it was very tasty and everything on this plate was grown right here on this farm!! The Dragon Tongue beans, the onions, garlic and lard they were cooked in (yes I said lard! from our own piggies!) the crustless quiche is homegrown chicken eggs, fresh chevre goat cheese I made, swiss chard & again the onions, garlic... and even the herbs All grown here.. ok, I didn't grow the salt The Bald Man poured on... but everything else.. all products of the farm right here!!! So thats my little victory this week!
The beans are really coming in! and so are the cukes! I can't wait to make pickles! I'm down to my last few jars so hoping to stock up this summer. Goat burgers with homemade pickles... the perfect summer meal. I picked so many this morning it shouldn't be a problem.
Draining goat cheese, fresh cukes & beans!

 Here's 2 of my wonderful milkers... such well behaved good girls! They and the other girls produce so much milk for us.
 Goats in the garden! This raised bed has been harvested out for the spring! and all the rain has quickly grown up a ton of weeds I did not want to pull up.. so I thought I'd bring in to of my best eaters to work for me. Now this looks like a good ideal... it was a good ideal! To bad the girls quickly grew bored of what was in the bed and wanted to go else where to eat! Thats goats,,, grass is always greener... so I ended up pulling weeds and working on my farmers tan! So,blah! no victory here!
Ofcourse the greatest Victory is Victory in Jesus ...

Y'all have a good week now  :-)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Bitter Sweet Farm Life

Alpine are Boss here!
I do love my goats... all of them. Its sad when I have to cut some of them.

I made the decision... a decision that was LONG over due to sell my Nigerian herd... I had alot of plans for that little herd. As the farm changed and the need for larger goats became greater, the Nigerians became a burden instead of a blessing.
I hate to say that but its true. I only have so much time in a day... between the big milkers that are important for cheese making and feeding our hogs and the duel purpose breeding program goats that I hope one day will be the only herd we have to have that fills all our needs.. the Nigerians and the Lamanchas just didn't fit.
The Lamancha is a nice breed I had planned to use in my breeding program... but those little ears freak people out , so I decided I shouldn't use them after all, therefore they did not get to stay. That made me sad, because I had some really really good ones! But if they don't fit.. they can't stay.
The Nigerians are little and cute,,, though can be naughty and rowdy! I had many plans to build a herd of incrediable little milkers, we bought the best lines for milking traveling very far for some of them...
But they were not meant to be for us.... and honestly I got kinda tired of managing them. They are harder to manage than big girls... for me anyways!

I feel like I'm being lead in a different direction also... more on that in another post!
Future of the farm?
 So I am sad to see the Lamanchas and nigerians go (some of the nigerians anyways, cause like I said they can be rowdy!)
But very very excited to see what the future will bring for us! Its almost time to start figuring out breeding plans for fall and my new project...
the new project... so exciting and scary!
Another post, I promise! lol!!!

God Bless and have a very Great Day!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A reminder...

What a year this has been already... so challenging and hard... not without out its rewards ... my husband , the Bald Man, has to remind me though! I often think... why I am doing all this... I had such an easy life of fun and care free days before.... so this post is a reminder for me... fresh foods and beautiful baby goats.... yes, thats some of the reasons I do this  :-)
a yummy basket of veggies & herbs for the goats

Cabbage and onions doing well!!!
Finally getting to harvest a few things from my spring garden... that was so slow growing thanks to the long winter we had! But I've been getting lots of lettuce, collards, chard, herbs... and even some extra for the goats. I'm really wanting tomatos and fresh green beans!

 This is my boy! He will be kept for breeding this season. He's a first generation Homestead goat for us! His mother is an excellent milker and one of the easiest to milk on the farm! We are retaining 2 first generation bucks and 1 second generation buck for our breeding program this year... so far he's the star of the 3... pictured at just 5 weeks here... he is huge and filling out more and more everyday. My 2nd generation buck is only 3 weeks old though... and bigger everyday... so we will see who weighs in at 8 weeks!

 I love this baby girl! Her dam and sire both fill the 'requirements' of the duel purpose cross we like.. makes her a 2nd generation doeling for our program... she's putting on weight as fast as her brother! She is 2 weeks in this pic.
This girl.... what is she a cross of ?? you'd never believe me if I told you... she is 5 weeks in this pic... bigger than all my pure dairy girls that are a month older than her and she's still filling out. Her brother is beautiful too and being kept for breeding because his mother was my very best doe and very favorite doe.
I love all my goats... but my crosses that will hopefully fill our duel purpose needs are extra special!

So I have alot to look forward too.... and I know I'm blessed and I'm also very thankful.

Its just so hard homesteading in Tennessee! or anywhere I think.... but I love it... just every now and then I have to look at pics.. take a moment and watch the girls play on their new 'goat play ground'

and every now and then... I just need a nice glass of wine in the evening!!! and remember..
"tomorrow is another day"  full of wonderful things....


God is good to me.... I don't know why, but He is.