Monday, June 30, 2008

Mastitis, Enemas, and General Goat Craziness!

I can finally write about my goats now that we're getting back to a less frantic pace. The weekend I was gone to NCF my 2 mama goats had their babies, turns out I had miscalculated their due dates. Although "the book" assured me that goat births are 95% uncomplicated, I was not sufficiently prepared for post-natal complications. The babies were 3 days old by the time I got home, and I came back to my first time mom, Lisa, rejecting both of her twins and getting a mild mastitis and serious engorgement as a result. We lost one of the twins trying to bottle-feed her that night and the second one is still on the skinny side. I have to put Lisa in the stanchon every morning to let the baby nurse, then after that they seem fine.

My 2nd time mom, Champagne was not cleaning her babies bums the way a good mother should and both her twins were completely bunged up. I thought I was going to loose one cause it was so sad and sick, it's little bum was oozing pus and other disgusting yellow stuff for days but it seems to have pulled through. Both babies got soapy enemas with tea tree as soon as I could get their little bum holes cleared (extremely nasty job) and now they are jumping around and playing like crazy. Don't you love their airplane ears? So precious!

Mr. Billy Bob, the father of these young creatures, has been moved to the neighbours' dog run. I've had endless problems with him trashing fences and eating my other neighbours flowers so we have finally resorted to tieing him up. Not something I like to do to any of my animals, but really, enough is enough. What I need is a 6ft high wooden fenced pen where I can feed him hay year round. I hate to feed hay in the summer, especially since I have more pasture that my animals can graze, but the alternatives for him are the auction or the bbq. Ugh, I've invested in him and it was such a huge pain to find a dairy breed billy at a price we could afford on our small scale farm. We wanted a dairy breed so we could get some more good milkers, but as it turns out, the three kids are all boys! So, I still need billy and I really don't want to have to build ANOTHER pen, and where would I put it anyway? Descisions like this can be so hard but if I meditate on it long enough, the right solution will come to me.

So in the next two days my job is to dehorn the babies with caustic acid and perform the small surgery of taking their nuts out. Mmmmmh mini prairie oysters anyone?

Truth be told, I've been too hard on myself for missing the births of my goats. Here I am training to become a birth attendant doula, and when my own animals needed me, I wasn't available. There were things I could have done to encourage bonding for the mom who rejected her kids, and helping the moms clean the babies off would have prevented alot of mess. I feel like it was a hard lesson especially cause I'm so wrapped up in birth and labour and bonding right now. I have to allow myself this failure and grow into greater awareness, intuition, and precaution.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

North Country Fair

I was a craft vendor at NCF and was it ever INTENSE!! I made lots of sales, talked to many cool people, learned alot about tie-dye, and worked my ass off with a little bit of crazy dancing thrown into the mix. I would never have survived without my helpers, Colin, Jasmine, Christy, and Ben, who deserve thousands of thanks. Honestly, I haven't worked so hard since my days as a highballer treeplanter and camp cook.

I had my weavings set up on one side of the tent and a tie-dye station on the other side. A few things to change for next year are to have some sort of awning so the shy customers don't have to come right inside the tent but can view from a safe distance. I'm so scary, I know. Also, I don't know if I would do tie-dye and weavings together again, it was too distracting to have all these options. I'm hoping for next year to arrange with the big fair bosses and have a tie-dye station set up for volunteer shirts. Have one big tie-dye workshop and that's it.

Of course, the things I thought would really sell, such as my Grateful Dead mini tapestries, didn't sell at ALL! It just confirms that it's so impossible to predict. The theory, however that you sell 10-15% of what you bring was somewhat true and I need to stock pile a HUGE selection if I do this next year. And not have so much variety, streamline baby.

Anyway, lots to learn and I'm no longer a fair virgin, though a long way from being a fair crone, ha ha, wouldn't that be great. I did meet a few and they are pretty wild, these ladies, especially the psycic ones. Shouldn't laugh, it'll probably be me someday.

The tie-dye boys had a blast. When Lucas wasn't busy kissing the girls he was wandering off and scaring the life out of us. Both the boys were so independant and free, they played hard, cried hard, slept hard, my little festival troopers, they were awesome.

Friday, June 13, 2008

This One's for you Daddy

Happy Father's Day!

We love you and miss you more than we could ever express. We can't wait for you to get back, it's just not "happy home" without you. With love, hugs, and kisses, from your boys and mama.
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