Homestead Animals

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4 articles in category Homestead Animals / Subscribe

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The other day I was on my way out to check on the boys’ progress on some chicken coop projects. More on that soon. On the way out there I snapped a few photos of one of the newest additions to to the homestead – Kitty.

She is an older goat in milk that we got from the same friends and neighbors that Abby and Daisy came from. After a bit of head knocking and working out of who was really in charge, she fit right in. She’s actually family to Abby and Daisy so it worked out well.

So now Abby and Kitty are giving about a gallon of milk per day between the two of them. And Kitty is a really sweet goat, loving to nuzzle against Stewart and the boys when they’re out with her at milking time. Lord willing, we would like to breed Abby and Daisy this fall and then space out Kitty’s breeding so we can always be getting some milk. And, of course, we may consider adding more animals to the pasture.

For now, though, we welcome Kitty to the homestead.

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Last week Stewart put up a car gate and two homemade walking gates and thereby completed the fencing of the pasture. If you walk around the property you’ll find homemade gates on the pasture, the original two acres, the chicken field, and the pallet garden. I only mention that because I am kind of a sucker for homemade gates.

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The morning after he completed the gates, we all headed out for milking time so that we could release Abby and Daisy and let them roam. We’ve had Abby and Daisy for nearly a year now and have picketed Abby in close proximity to their shelter, water, and milking stand. Daisy followed her Mama around up until recently and never needed picketing.

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So after Elijah milked, he let her off the milking stand and she walked around slightly confused. A week on and they still tend to stay close to their previous picketing space. However, they seem to be wandering a bit further in the pasture as they become acquainted with the freedom to roam three acres.

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Goats are not like cows in that they seem to like to eat a little bit of everything – from grass to weeds to brush and trees. We have long discussed layering in other true grass-eaters like a cow or sheep to make the most of the three acre pasture, but that is a ways off and Lord willing.

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Since we let them off we have gotten reports from the boys as they go out to pasture. “Abby was down at the over spill!” or “The goats went all the way to the other end of the pasture with us!” is the breaking news as the boys swing open the screen door.

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We are thankful for the help we’ve gotten with the fence from the community here.

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Ultimately we are thankful to the Lord for His faithfulness and sovereignty in all homestead matters. The process of growing a homestead by hand while raising these five little blessings is surely one of the greatest educations in waiting on the Lord and trusting in His sovereignty that I have yet to encounter. Fence, goats, pastures, and milk have been nothing compared to the spiritual gifts that we have been given through the process.