Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My how they GROW!

Last week I had to catch up hoof trims and shots and what not and I weighed both of the "little girls" - who are NOT so little anymore! Remember Darlene?  Who was 3 months old and 50lbs when I brought her home?  Well now she is 5 1/2 months old (at the time) and weighed this much:

Yup - that says 87lbs! And I'd believe it, she is one side little load of goat! She does so well getting on the stand already for her hoof trims, and behaves too!

Then there is Dixie Chicken - my "little bit of shit" as I call her because she is always into something! Remember her?  She wasn't even 8lbs when she was born, on May 6th, and she was so itty bitty sweetie petitie!
And now here she is, just read THAT weigh tape!

Oh yes, every bit of 63 lbs already! Also very good at hopping on the stand and behaving while I mess with her....she's trouble at times, but still very sweet and mild mannered over all (she's just a slightly spoiled baby). I can't believe she was just barely 3 months old when I got that weight and pic of her!  She's gonna be a BIG girl, I know it!

So...that's the most recent goaty update....I hadn't realized I had forgotten about it till just now!

The Angry Oak Tree....or is it sad?

There's a little video tour of the latest with the oak tree.  I still can't decide if the dang thing hates me, or if it is just sad.  All I know is I have watered, bragged on, loved on and petted that dang tree and it is NOT behaving well!

Guess I better head on out and start doing something to get that mess cleaned up...didn't make it that far yesterday as I was knocking out 6 batches of soap AND I found more pallets for the new "piggy palace" I am planning for...off to work then eh?

One down....

Yes, that is a dead armadillo out in the yard.  The time had come, I had enough! Don't get me wrong, he honestly left me alone for the most part...BUT...he was leaving the landscape full of those little "toe catcher" holes....

Now, if I trip and fall, I get over it and get up. But if something else - like say a horse or a goat- were to catch a hoof in a hole and break a leg, I would feel bad forever. There was no relocating this guy, he just had to go!

Mr Farmhand actually had gotten up the other night and wandered out to the fridge in the shed for a glass of milk...and there he was! Mr Sandman, our armadillo....and in his socks and underwear (the proper hunting attire out here) my husband took him out! It was like a mob hit, old school, deadly, mission accomplished.

Now if only we could get the possum that keeps tearing up the trash! I've had about enough of that too!

Monday, August 5, 2013

How I love a good sunset...

Pardon the dirty, cracked, chipped window on the Jeep in the way...but isn't that just the prettiest cloud all lit up by the setting sun?  I thought so too :)  There is nothing nicer than a gorgeous sunset!

Even when it's hot, and humid....even where there are a million and one stinging, biting bugs....the sunsets in the summer are just about my most favorite thing!

I got this one about 2 weeks ago, coming home one evening.  Post card perfect, I swear!

While I cheerfully endure the next month or 2 - those bugs and the humidity are killing me! - I will look forward to these peaceful, beautiful, summer sunsets out on the country.  I love this time of year, even if I am melting slowly.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Milk Test, Round TWO!

Yup - it's that time again haha! ROUND TWO of milk testing...don't worry, I won't blog needlessly and aimlessly about every test date in detail...But, I had realized I hadn't really finalized everything with the last test.

There is my "fancy pants scale" with it's sticker on there to show it has been checked for calibration....

So, pretty basically, your get all your paper work together. This would be 2 VERY simple sheets, and 2 simple yet tedious sheets to fill out.  One just states which does are coming into milk and which have been dried off.  One is like your invoice - which you fill out since you know how many does and thus how many samples you are sending in. Don't forget your money order or check with it LOL.

The DMS213 or your "herd form" is  one of the tedious ones - at least the first time ever, and then after that whenever you add does....it's where your address, times you milked, and your supervisors signature go AND any does you transfer in from other herds or just plain new does in milk from your own herd that have never been on test have to be entered in.  THERE is the tedious bit - lots of little spaces to be filled in with numbers :P

After that you have your DMS201 or "supervisors barn sheet" - another form that CAN be a bit tedious. Once again, when adding does to the milking string, lots of little spaces wanting registration numbers and what not to be filled in :P  BUT, once you are on a roll with the same does as last month, not bad.  DO NOT forget to put the milk weights in!  This is the one where your weights go - kinda crucial right? Also, any changes in reproductive type stuff - like if a doe is in heat, or if she has been bred, these things go on that form too!

Don't forget to make and save copies....you just never know when a box might get crushed and have milk spill all over stuff, or even lost in the mail.  At least even if your samples are lost you will have you info on weights and what not saved so that part can count on your test day data!

After that you wait about 2 - 3 weeks and you will get an email back from Eva at Langston (if that is who you use) with all of this preprinted for next time and a receipt of sorts AND Your test results!!! That was a super cool day, and really nice to see how my does were doing in the butterfat and protein department too!

So, here we are at round two, time for another monthly test....Last night there was a milking and a weigh out....this morning there was a milking, weights taken AND samples!  That's the other part - the MILK SAMPLES!  VERY easy! Your supervisor just uses your little DHIA approved dipper to fill the vial about half full in the a.m. and again half full in the p.m. - per Eva at Langston you want half and half from each milking to fully and accurately represent what that doe is making in a 24 hour period right?  Don't forget to label the vials with a BLACK permanent marker....and bring them in the house.  They do NOT need to be refrigerated (that little tiny tablet preserves them just fine), but leaving them outside can be risky on several levels - if something gets into your vials and destroys your samples you don't want to start over :(

Here mine are waiting for the p.m. milking:
After the evening milking I will box this up with the $$$ (all of $10.46 - easily pulled out of the farm funds lol) and in the morning off it will go to Oklahoma and Langston University :)  Next time we test it will be a "verification test" - no big deal but it will involve one more person. 

Also...don't forget to send in your "Herd Code" to ADGA....Your herd code will come in that email with you first set of test results, pre printed on the form for next time and ADGA will need that to track your records to apply it to THEIR records LOL.  You can mail back the little slip they send you OR you can even email it to them!  SUPER easy to do! I emailed mine the second I got it from one place off to the next :)

So....big excitement and highlight of my day, milk test :)  Who knew tests could be so exciting I said!

Piggy Weigh In Part II

Okay, so it's been almost 6 weeks since our last weigh in day....this week I will have to get out there and FINALLY revamp the "piggy palace" as she is fast outgrowing the "baby box"...UGH! DREADING that part!  But, the time has come....

So....the numbers from last time can be seen here: Piggy Weigh In Day     She was pushing the 40lb mark at that point.

Today I got 33 inches long, 29 inches around, and this picture of her digging into a watermelon....

Sacrificing half an icey cold melon was the ONLY way to get her to stand still.....she buried her face in that and went to town while I measured :) (Well, she wiggled around a little, but still, it's better than fussing with her while she tries to taste my measuring tape!)

So, the math on those numbers brings us to a total of 69 pounds! Not bad - not great, but not bad.....it's hot, and NOTHING ever grows as fast in the heat as it does in the more temperate months....but still...she's about half way to where we want her. Since it's just James and I here, we are aiming for about 150lbs before she heads off to the processor. Or October 1st, whichever gets here first...I don't want to be fighting deer season and a million hunters to get her in there.

Not much longer till she heads to Camp Kenmore...