A Farm Full of Baby Goats

twin kalahari goats

Our Kalahari Goat farm is overrun with cuteness this month as one mother after another delivers adorable baby goats.

We’ve had three sets of twins and one single birth, and each one is unique and precious.

twin baby kalahari goats

I love how the twins snuggle together, finding sunny spots to curl up against the winter chill. And it’s been chilly. Just 40 minutes south of us they had SNOW!! Amazing. We didn’t know how our Kalahari Red kids would do in the cold, but so far, they’re thriving.

baby kalahari goat

Their faces are so sweet and tiny, their coats amazingly soft in varying shades of rich reddish brown.

kalahari red kid

The older ones are already learning to climb and jump, looking hilariously awkward as they trot along with their mothers before randomly leaping in the air, limps flailing.

twin kalahari goats

My favorite thing is watching our Maremma, Apollo, undertake his baby-sitting duties. He’s such a good protector for the littles. He sits with them while they nap, licks them clean, and chases off any older ones who look like they might have bullying on the mind.

maremma guarding baby goat

It’s such a beautiful and happy time of year on the farm. These baby goats put smiles on our faces all day long.

What’s putting a smile on your face this week? xo

Growing for Animals

capsicums for chooks

It’s a dark and blustery day on our farm, and Bear and I just came in from drenching our herd of Kalahari Goats, trimming the hooves of those who needed it. Now they’re out feasting in fields, staying close to the fence line to block the wind. Goats don’t like the wind because it inhibits their hearing and enables predators to sneak up on them unawares. That’s why we have our lovely Maremma dogs guarding them. Not even high winds keep them from being vigilant.

I’ve been working hard in my gardens in recent months. Tearing out all the detritus from the Summer and Autumn gardens, building up the soil with goat manure, and putting in all those lovely Winter things: greens, root veggies, and herbs that thrive well in the cold Winter air.

My kitchen garden is where I nurture the not-so-hardy things I love, like bougainvillea and lilly pilly. They make me smile with their brilliant blossoms and bright berries.

bougainvillea

In addition to planting for me and Bear, I also plant for our animals.

Chilies and capsicums are perfect for our chooks, keeping them laying well into the Winter. That’s a great tip I learned from my gardening friend, Kathy, and it’s worked a treat.

capsicums for chooks

I also grow massive bushes of wormwood for our goats. Goats, sheep, cattle, they all get worms as they graze and need to be drenched (medicated) regularly. But by feeding them wormwood, a natural de-wormer, we only have to drench once or twice a year.

wormwood for goats

The clever thing about goats is that they know if they need wormwood or not. If they don’t have worms, they don’t give the wormwood more than a cursory sniff. But if they do have them, they chow down like it’s Christmas dinner.

goats eating wormwood

Now it’s time to go check on our baby goats. They get so busy eating that they don’t notice when the herd moves on without them and bleat plaintively when they discover they’ve been abandoned. A nudge in the right direction soon puts them to rights. 🙂

Do you grow anything special for your animals? I’d love to hear about it. 🙂 xo

 

Goats in Autumn Sunshine

kalahari red billy goat

We’ve had stunningly beautiful Autumn weather this week. Warm and sunny with soothing golden light that makes you happy to be alive.

To give our winter pastures time to restore before the cold weather hits, Bear and I have been taking our goats for daily treks into the bush to feast on brambles and weeds.

herding kalahari goats

They love it out there! They amble happily from one bramble patch the next, their coats covered in prickles and stickers as they nosh on their favorite bushes.

After their feast in the woods, we bring them back to the damn yard to wander over the hills and nibble at newly sprouted weeds and leafy trees.

goats in a valley

Most of the time we let them in and go up to the house, but sometimes I like to sit on the hillside and watch them, marveling at their personalities and quirks, admiring their glossy coats that positively gleam in the setting sunlight.

kalahari billy goat

I feel very lucky to get to raise these gorgeous animals and see them thrive. Sometimes they drive me batty when they bust through fences or make a banquet out of my garden, but mostly they are delightful.

kalahari red billy goat

What are some of your favorite moments on your homestead? xo

A Cloudy Day with Goats, Dogs, and Kangaroos

red wellies in the grass

We’ve had some crazy weather around here lately. One moment it’s pouring rain, the next sunny and hot, and five minutes later so cold you hastily unpack every winter garment you own.

I find every change of weather interesting, but when I need a quiet sort of day, cloudy ones are my favorite.

Sometimes life on the farm gets so busy tackling fencing jobs, gardening, and caring for animals that you don’t get a chance to really enjoy what you’re working towards. So I’ve been trying to make time to enjoy our life here, time to sit in the grass and take it all in.

red wellies in the grassOne afternoon last week while out on my walk, I stopped to take a breather and enjoy the view. Much to my astonishment five kangaroos hopped by in front of me! I only managed to capture two of them with my camera (they’re fast little buggers!), but how I love that little Joey. 🙂

kangaroos in a fieldOur goats are doing so well with full bellies and glossy fur, some of them already wearing their winter coats.

Boer Kalahari goats for saleThe little ones aren’t so little anymore, but they’re still cute and frisky climbing everything in sight (including our cars!). We check every day for new babies, but no kids yet.

Kalahari goats for saleOur four dogs – Apollo, Solar, Freja, and Luna – are outgrowing their puppy stages and turning into lovely, obedient, and affectionate dogs.

Apollo is our biggest Maremma, and he gets along so well with Luna, our little cattle-dog mix. I love watching them together.

Maremma dog playingThey have the best time racing around the paddock together each day when Luna and I return from our walk in the bush.

Maremma dog runningI like cloudy days not just for the peace and quiet they bring, but also for the spectacular skies they make as the sun begins to set.

windmill sunsetWhat things in your life do you like to take time to slow down and enjoy?

Summer Morning in the Fields and Gluten-Free Mexican Breakfast

Kalahari buck

Summer has arrived at last and until the storms blew in this week, it’s been sultry and piping hot. Since it’s way too scorching to be out in the fields during the day, I’ve been taking the goats out in the early morning.

wildflowers with goats

It’s been beautiful. The sun is still hot but cool morning breezes are wonderfully refreshing. Now that three sides of the new paddock are fenced in, I only have to guard one side from escaping goats. It’s made my time in the fields so much more relaxing and enjoyable.

This is great now that our Kalahari goat herd has grown with the addition of five new babies, a stray girl that wandered in from who knows where, and William, the big daddy of the group who is part of the gang once again. Isn’t he a fine, strapping fellow?

Kalahari buck

It’s so nice to see them roaming happily, tucking into clumps of wildflowers or munching thistles without pricking themselves.

Kalahari goats in paddock

I like to find a comfy spot in the field to rest my bones as the wind shushes through the grass lulling me into utter relaxation.

red gum boots

Luna loves it too, taking turns chasing after field mice and returning to burrow in my lap for a scratch and a cuddle.

cattle dog in field

She’s such an affectionate snuggler and can’t seem to wriggle in close enough.

farm girl and her dog

I may have to battle heat, flies, and mosquitoes, but it still beats an office any day of the week.

field dandelion

In my quest for healing and strength, I continue to experiment with healthy gluten-free breakfasts that don’t include dairy, sugar, or acid-forming foods. Mostly eggs of some variety do the trick, but sometimes I can’t bear the thought of another egg.

When those days come I turn to one of my old favorites: savory Mexican black beans topped with pico de gallo and guacamole. I love how the fresh Roma tomatoes and zingy lime juice turn a heavy dish into one that is light and perky with plenty of protein and fiber to keep me going all morning.

Mexican gluten-free breakfast

What is your favorite healthy breakfast?

Click here for my gluten-free Mexican breakfast recipes.