I am normally delighted to see the month of March coming to a close.  March and November (where we live) are the two most difficult weather months for me.  They are usually soggy, cold, and miserable and it is hard to get anything done.  March is the month of the mole at our place. They are rampant and it is a full-time job just keeping up on traps and knocking down hills.  (How could such a tiny creature be so destructive?) We always have a fair number of does due in March and we are crazy busy with kidding and dealing with new mommies. Typically the grass really starts growing, but it is too soggy and wet to cut, so either things look totally unkempt or we kill ourselves for an entire day to get the grass clipped off. And well, let’s face it, by the time March gets here we are basically done with that winter thing and getting a terrible spring fever itch.

This year is different.  Even though all those things are true,  I would still like to ask for a March Do-Over. Not even sure what happened to the month, but frankly, our remodel construction has come to a complete stand-still for the past month.  We are now TWO months behind schedule, but we are functional, so I can’t complain.

We are currently milking 14 new mommies—by hand!  The whole idea of this project was to get the machine milking system installed and I am embarrassed to say, that has moved to the low end of the priority list.  It will get done…eventually.  Just getting the girls trained to go into the new parlor and find their spots has been a full-time job in itself.  Poor girls!  I guess I didn’t realize how much we had changed things around until the first doe kidded and she looked at me wild-eyed when I led her into the new parlor area. I could almost hear her say, “Mom, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH MY MILKING PARLOR????”  Slowly, slowly, slowly, we are all adjusting. 

The creamery is mostly complete, although we haven’t completely moved in yet.  It turned out lovely and we are feeling really good about the layout and design of the creamery.  We think it is going to be quite functional and efficient and most importantly, create better quality control for all of our milk and products.

We are deep into discussion about how best to really launch our ice cream. Discussions with distributors, retailers, and mulling over our best plan. Conversations with PR experts and trying to decide what the next steps will be.  It is all exhausting, but we hope worthwhile in the end. We love the idea of creating a delicious, decadent, sweet, healthy, treat for those people that struggle with milk allergies.  As with everything we do, we have to chew on it for months before it finally develops into what we want to do.  In the meantime, we are creating a plan…and exciting plan…that we hope will really promote this wonderful product and the wonderful goats that make it!

Shaun and I are already regretting, more than we can express, not breeding the sheep.  We miss the lambs terribly.  We will never make that choice Lamb from previous yearsagain, but at the time, on the front end of our huge remodeling project, it seemed like the right thing to do.  In truth, it probably was, but on this end of the tunnel, it feels a little lonely not to have any baby woolies to snuzzle. 

We were just chatting last night how it is almost time for our annual trek down to Al’s Fruit and Shrub so we can get our hanging baskets put together for the year.  We always enjoy doing that and then we get to enjoy the baskets for the rest of the summer.  It is like the date that keeps on going.

I think today we will clean out the hen house and put the chicken poop on the garden in anticipation of veggies to come.  Almost time to start thinking about gardening.   It is always my Mother’s Day wish to spend it in the garden with my family.  There is nothing better than spending a wonderful day playing in the dirt with the people you love.

In ‘family news’, we are excited to share that Amber has accepted a position at Desert Cross Veterinary Hospital in Thatcher, Az.  She returned from visit there enthusiastic about the medicine and anxious to become part of a great team.  Several of my contemporaries have responded with ‘how far away’ she will be.  Psshhh! People forget that we had a kiddo that lived in Zambia, Africa for 2 ½ years—Thatcher, Arizona is a short flight to a sunny vacation destination.  Couldn’t be more thrilled for our girl. We all win!

It doesn’t seem like a March do-over is likely to happen, so I best get this day rolling or I am going to watch another one slip away through my fingers. 

Until next time (which I hope is a little more timely than this time), we hope your grass dries enough so you can get it cut, you manage to keep your mole hills knocked down, your does are healthy and productive and your kids are happily frolicking…and if you haven’t kidded or lambed yet, we wish you a trouble-free kidding season!!!! Happy Easter, Friends.   

Peace & Blessings, S & L

Ivy Says:

All the milking does have worked hard to make delicious specialty goats milk cheese that is now for sale on this website, but isn't guaranteed to last long. (She's heard Caraway is in short supply.) Best get to it, and purchase now.

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