I am constantly re-evaluating what is important to me in my life. As I do chores I have lots of time to reflect upon what makes me happy and what does not. When we first started this journey I wanted to be as self-sufficient as possible. Over time I have realized how much time and effort this truly takes. I have since taken the attitude that I will do what I can and I will outsource what I cannot. In reality some times it is less expensive to do that and there is no denying that it is not so labor intensive.
This year I am not so into milking….just not feeling it! Don’t get me wrong I love the act of milking. It is meditative and rhythmic in nature allowing me time to pause and use all of my senses. But caring for milking goats is time consuming and with the amount of goats I have not an inexpensive adventure. Regardless, the number one reason why I have decided to only milk for a few weeks this summer is because it is nearly impossible to leave the farm for more then a day when you have a dairy animal. There are very few people in this day and age that know how to milk and only a handful willing to learn. It is a fairly easy task once you’ve practiced a few times but it does take a little skill and forearm power.
Flower Girl and I milked two of our dairy goats for the first time last night in the rain. We took a few pictures on my phone but the quality was marginal. We will milk for the next couple weeks and freeze the milk in hopes to be make lots of soap for the Common Ground Fair this fall. FG has yet to hear back if she and her brother’s applications have been accepted. Until then we will think positively.
As far as drinking and cooking milk…. well I must confess I have been SPOILED with fresh raw organic Jersey milk that is delivered to my house in a glass jar weekly at a cost of $4.50/gallon since last summer. If I feel ambitious and want to make cheese or something I just order more. We are not big milk drinkers so some weeks I have leftovers and I make yogurt with it. Now I want a dairy cow…lol. Not now but maybe someday!
So with that said I have 2 of my dairy goats out on borrow for the summer. They are at a friends farm that I know will take good care of them. My other two does will also go out on borrow soon. It would have been a shame to dry them up when I knew people wanted to milk for the summer. The only goats that will be on the farm this summer are Dolly my Alpine goat and Johnny my naughty billy goat. I would love to think I could put them in with the cows but I am not sure how that will work out. Time will tell!
On a final note in follow-up to posting from my phone. It works but is best for very brief posts. The image quality is not even comparable to my Canon but I still think I will use it from time to time to share brief tidbits of the madness.
Praying for sunshine!!! We were on vacation this week and it has been raining nearly non-stop since last Sunday. Thankfully we went camping last weekend instead of Memorial weekend. I have not finished or started any of my planned outside projects: plant the garden, open the pool, and clean the outhouse. I have mostly cooked and cleaned. My house is cleaner then I care to admit. I’m even caught up on folding laundry which only occurs about once a year here. Cheers to brighter days ahead!