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You Can’t Miss it

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We needed dairy goats. We scanned the ads for goats all over Georgia and I contacted tons of wonderful goat-herding folks but I just couldn’t connect with them. Many of them spoke of their goats as they would a drunk uncle at a family reunion: useless, annoying, and blissfully unaware of boundaries. I kept searching. DSC_0050 At last, I found a lady just north of us who spoke of her goats with respect and did not say (even once) how eager she was to unload the goats onto someone else. A fellow soaper (soapmaking hobbiest), her goats not only provide her with milk to serve to her family but also to add to her soaps. She wasn’t “getting rid” of anything — just downsizing. She wanted good homes for her babies and they would not just be going to the highest bidder. Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise: we would buy our goat family from her. During one of our phone conversations (peppered with my comments to the children, “Please keep the lizards and frogs outside.” and “Please don’t eat your boogers. Get a tissue.”), I told her how heartbroken I was that the children would not get to enjoy playing with the goats. The girls leave Tuesday afternoon and the goats won’t come home with us until the goat barn is finished which probably won’t happen until the end of June.

Picture taken by missdee101

I’d always pictured my children playing happily in a field full of goats, bottle-feeding kids (baby goats), and helping me milk the does. Even knowing that Kaitlin and Bri (my girls) were not going to be mine forever, I still wanted them to meet the goats before they moved on to a new chapter in their lives. I wanted them to share in the excitement as we prepared to welcome the goats to our home. Amazingly, the goat/soap lady understood completely. She agreed that the children needed to meet the goats before leaving and invited us out Thursday afternoon. My friend Laura, her son, the girls, and I piled into our little car. tokyo ghoul phone case iphone 7 Under clear sunny skies, we drove the back country roads to meet our future goats. This was my first visit to the sleepy town of Greenville, Georgia. With its historic Southern homes, rolling hills dotted with livestock, verdant farmland, and gently winding roads… I felt an overwhelming sense of calm. Even when I reached the town square with its Neoclassical Revival courthouse and realized that I had absolutely no idea where I was going. iphone 7 phone case adidas We ended up stopping at a gas station just off from the town square to ask for directions. The convenience store portion of the station didn’t appear to have changed since the early seventies (possibly earlier but I am not up on gas station architecture). I stepped inside where I was greeted warmly by two uniformed heating/cooling system repair guys. The conversation went as such: “Get on one hundred and you caiiinn’t miss it,” said the taller repair guy. “I know thassss right,” replied the shorter repair guy with a reassuring nod. “Which side of the road will it be on? Are there any landmarks?” I asked, hoping for flashing lights or pointed arrows. smart iphone 8 case “Just turn at the big brick milk jug. You caiiiinnn’t miss it.” The repair guys said at once. Oh, believe me boys: I can miss it and I did miss it. iphone 6 thin case black I turned onto “100” just fine. Loved the drive! With Thoroughbreds breezing along high wooden fences, stately farmhouses, and charming barns at every bend — I fully embraced “100.” But I saw no brick milk jug. iphone 6 plus stylish case I honestly wasn’t sure I’d know a brick milk jug were it to attack me from the backseat of my car like the deer in Tommy Boy. Not surprisingly, we reached the end of “100” without luck. I called the goat/soap lady for help.

Turned out we’d passed the brick milk jug a few miles back — must have been distracted by all the horses. Admittedly, I go a little crazy in equine-country. Can you blame me?? Sure enough, there was her road. But where was the brick milk jug?? Laura and I looked carefully and spotted an odd little building tucked behind a wooden privacy fence. There stood a tiny old store nearly overtaken by vines, tall grass, and Georgia jungle. You can just make out the jug spout and handle.

Photo by Laura Bailey, taken from the passenger's seat

We were told that the fence is in place to discourage horrible people (like us) from taking pictures or using the brick milk jug as a landmark. The owner is a wee mite eccentric. (Ya think? The crazy thing built a brick milk jug for Pete’s sake.) I should send that guy my gas bill. heavy duty phone case iphone 8 Had he not put up the stockade fence, I wouldn’t have missed my turn. The boogerhead.
Painting by Rusty Jones

Painting by Rusty Jones

Anyway, we arrived at a storybook white farmhouse with large vegetable garden and cheerful cornflower blue barn complete with a herd of goats. Glory be! We made it! The gentle-voiced animal-lover and soapmaker sat on her front porch waiting for us. She was exactly as I’d pictured her. That rarely happens. I’m not a good voice-to-face matcher but in this case — I was right on. She was lovely.

We all walked to the paddock and in the shade of several trees were the goats. Velvety soft muzzles found their way to our hands and curious amber eyes gave us the once-over in hopes that we carried grain or treats. When it became apparent that we carried nothing more than a camera, they wandered off to graze.

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While the lady and I talked shop (agreed on when to pick up the goats, how much, which does were mine, etc.), we noticed that not one but two of the four females were pregnant. Let this be a lesson to us all: be specific in your prayers. I prayed for kids and laws-a-mercy! I’m getting them!

Four dairy goats will produce more than enough milk for us to drink, cook with, freeze, making into soap, and turn into cheese. iphone 6 case harry potter Be prepared — this website will be unapologetically centered around all things Capra aegagrus hircus (goat) for at least a month. I hope that I won’t scare you off.

Just in case you are tossing around the idea of becoming a goat-owning wild thing, I thought I’d share a few sites that provide you with everything you ever wanted to know about goat husbandry:

And yes, I realize that this was a ridiculously long post and you have a life. I just had to tell someone.

  • Josh Maxwell - Thanks for posting the article, was certainly a great read!ReplyCancel

  • Julie at Elisharose - I’m so jealous I could spit. But that doesn’t stop me from being exceedingly excited for you! I look forward to living vicariously through your posts.

    I wish you baby girl kids.ReplyCancel

  • Michele - How well does Feta ship? Because I’m going to come abegging.

    The girls are leaving? I knew the day was going to come but was hoping things might change.ReplyCancel

  • Barbie - How cool! Dairy goats are one animal I wish dh would let us have. Of course…he won’t. Oh well, I can live vicariously through you, though. BTW, Wardeh at Such Treasures and Gnowflins has had a similar adventure the past couple of weeks. If you haven’t read over there lately, you may want to read her recounting of adopting some dairy goats. Today’s post particularly warns of Shipping Fever, an illness that apparently strikes goats when they are moved. I’m so happy for you that you are getting some goats, though!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Holly the Knitter - I have a high school friend who has a goat farm. Here’s her website: http://dixiedreamsdairy.com/ReplyCancel

  • Linda Sue - Goats are lovely creatures – we’ve had our little herd for about 5 years now – a hodgepodge of breeds – initially meant as meat goats but I got a “free” (dangerous term in livestock) nubian buck and now I have beautiful very SMALL goats not good for the meat market. But may sell some as pets – my kids are mostly very affectionate and nothing is cuter than baby goats! Have fun – I’m sorry about the children – the Lord is preparing something special for all of you but it doesn’t mean in the time between things won’t still hurt like heck. Bless you.ReplyCancel

  • Dianne - I’m jealous and HAPPY for you at the same time!!! I can’t wait to hear all about it and see pics and read recipes. What a wonderful experience. Jim has (almost) agreed to my having two dwarf Nigerian goats but drew the line at dairy. His argument being that you could never leave and had to be there to milk them twice a day…yada yada yada… I’ll have to have fun seeing pics of yours!

    Love,
    DianneReplyCancel

  • Loretta - We had goats for years until my daughter was diagnosed with cancer. During that time we were not able to be here to care for them (milk, bottle feed babies, etc.) so we sold them. My children loved having the goats and so did I. I never made soap, but we did drink the milk and I made cheese. To this day my daughter claims that store bought milk tastes like chalk water compared to fresh goats milk. We’ve actually been thinking about getting goats again, but haven’t done it yet. I hope you enjoy your goats as much as we enjoyed ours.ReplyCancel

  • kerry - they’re really beautiful. i, for one, can’t wait to read all the goat related posts to come. đŸ™‚ReplyCancel

  • ToilingAnt - I totally want a couple goats one day. đŸ™‚ReplyCancel

  • Nancy M. - They are so pretty! Congratulations on finding you some goats! I would have totally missed that milk jug too!ReplyCancel

  • Jeni Hill Ertmer - Hey! Make your posts as long as you want, talk about whatever you want too! Loved this post and especially the very first goat photo with the pretty white goat. I absolutely fell in love with that one -the eyes, and the mouth too -kind of pouty and so darned cute!
    I think it would be neat to have a couple of goats except that they would take, I’m sure, a mite more work than say, a couple of cats and some kittens and my dear daughter here, the mega cat lover, doesn’t like to do the duties involved in cat care so I can’t see her being too happy if a few goats showed up here and were put under her tutelage -or the 17-year-old stepgranddaughter’s either for that matter. I’m definitely not in any shape to be tending goats either though so that rules me out as cheif-feeder and goat tamer extraordinaire ya know!ReplyCancel

  • Margo - lucky you getting pregnant goats – looking forward to your first goats milk cheese post!ReplyCancel

  • Linda - Love love love your website! The goats drew my attention … I’ve wanted goats since I was a little girl. My parents finally bought some space in the country when I was 12, but my mom ended up buying me a motorcycle and a dog, instead of a goat. So I’m still wishing. My husband, kids and I live in town now … just not enough room. But some day … some day.

    Now I’m going to start looking around your site … so much fun stuff you have! THANKS!ReplyCancel

  • Lynnie - Wow, I wonder when they’ll have babies! I’ll bet soon, right? We have obviously loved having goats, though with our current crop of babies we are starting to understand why some people take on that gotta-get-rid-of-a-few mentality. Our barn is only so big, and our pasture can only withstand so many before things will actually not be too healthy for them (Oh, to live on a huge farm with a real pasture!). This is the first year we absolutely have to sell the babies because otherwise we’ll have too man for our land. They are so good-natured, though! We’ve never had a problem with them getting out and eating our garden, etc. And the babies are so much fun!

    I am sad to hear about the girls going on the next phase. I know how much you wanted this to work out, and I know what an awesome mom you must be! It is good that the girls at least can go through this experience together and hopefully support each other. I feel sorry for the other two that sound like they get separated out through the system more. I wish our foster care/ adoption system worked better for kids and families. Good luck with this! I’ll be thinking of you!ReplyCancel

  • HeatherJ - What beautiful goats! Now, you have to promise a goat cheese recipe someday.
    So sorry about the girls. I will be praying for you and Josh ~ especially on Tuesday. I know you both are fabulous parents and those girls will remember how much you love them their whole lives!ReplyCancel

  • amy - just came across your site. this is the very thing my husband and i are loosely looking into but seriously considering right now. thanks for the sites, and sharing your story.=)ReplyCancel

  • Laura - It was the best/worst road trip ever. I’m so glad that you got to see the rural farming community side of Georgia…and that I got to see it through your eyes :o) Ah, I can’t wait to bottle feed a kid and learn to milk a goat.ReplyCancel

  • Marlene - Dear Lacy,
    My heart is sad for you. I too was hoping that a miracle would occur and that they would be staying. I know it was not what had been planned but in life we are not given perfection of any kind but the tolerance, patience and acceptance of each other thus the unique world we live in. Perhaps there was a miracle in the aspect that we get to see ourselves and learn our own tolerances, patience and acceptances through the eyes of others. You did give love and in their way they gave. Sharing with them the goats will only enhance the love you had for them and they will remember, maybe not in the way we want but in the way that is suitable for them. Praise God for these precious Blessings for time and moment..It is at these times that we can really appreciate our Presents from Him, however long or short. You are and will be again an awesome Dad and Mom. Never forget that. They can take many pictures with them and if they should get destroyed, there is always the memories on both sides. I love you both…. Love AlwaysReplyCancel

  • Kath - Loved reading about your goats. And will enjoy a month of you talking about them.

    Sorry to hear the girls will be leaving this week. Such a sad situation for you all.

    HUGS!!ReplyCancel

  • Paulette - How awesome! I would love to have goats someday, but for now I’ll just visit yours.ReplyCancel

  • Tia Julie - Looking forward to having goats in the family. Raul will love all of the pictures and he will be fascinated with the stories.ReplyCancel

  • Shelli - Hi Lacy-

    I’m sorry to hear that the girls had to leave. I’ve not been good at surfing the web lately.

    I really enjoyed your story, it wasn’t too long at all, I could have read more!

    My mom had a pet goat named Daisy that she got after us kids moved out. She was quite cute and a bit pushy and she really was convinced that she was a dog as her only companion since arriving as a baby at Mom’s house was an English Bulldog.ReplyCancel

  • HeatherJ - It’s Tuesday… I’m praying for you guys. Be strong, dear ones!ReplyCancel

  • Dawn - Chadya wants us to get goats but I think we will stick with the chickens and the donkey and the new horse she is getting. We can barely keep up with the fencing as it is. Those are really cute goats and I am so glad your girls got to meet them.ReplyCancel

  • Guy - To all who are interested in small dairy breed or dual purpose breed…mini-nubian or dwarf nubians are a dual purpose breed that supply 2/3s the milk and are half the size of a standard. They are much easier on fencing as well. For small property holders/small families they are ideal. We have a 13 acre farm in NC and have chickens, goats and alpaca all on pasture. 3rd generation on out are eligible for breed registration.ReplyCancel

  • Razor Family Farms | All Things Goat - […] Cramer is one of myriad critters at Josh and Lacy Razor’s farm, where a herd of milking goats was recently added. It wasn’t easy finding them, as Lacy relates in this post: […]ReplyCancel

  • Good Golly, Another Goat! : Razor Family Farms - […] Can’t get enough of the goat adventures?  Feel free to read about the last adventure to find goats: You Can’t Miss It. […]ReplyCancel

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