What a crazy couple of months it’s been. First, my son and grandkids moved in temporarily, while he builds his house, which hasn’t really started yet. I can see that it’s not going to be three months, but rather til the end of the school year, at least. It means we are living in three rooms instead of six, have boxes of stuff piled all over the place, for there’s no room for them, have lost some boxes…like the one full of computer paper, paraphernalia, etc…somewhere in the house or barn, and there’s not much in the way of privacy, since the way to their part of the house is through ours. Then, there was the coyote attack. In early September, or was it the last days of August, it’s all a blur at this point, responsible coyote parents, teaching their young the skills they would need when they went out on their own (as in, how to hunt) attacked my sheep. I lost 11 of the 15 ewes I had. It was a shock…we never heard them, despite being up with all the windows open. They and the sheep they were chasing all over 4 acres of pasture were totally quiet. The silence of the lambs extends toward mature sheep, it seems. So, I’ve been restocking, slowly and carefully, and locking them in the shed each night. Then there were the turkeys to raise, (in the freezer this week), and the meat birds (hopefully in the freezer nwxt week), the pigs to harvest and take stuff to smoker for smoking and curing…and all the extra stuff required when you have children living in your house who have soccer practice, games, forget their trumpets, need clothes for a funeral, etc. And there were/are the winter shows, and preparing for them. Finally, I am down to one show left, first week in Nov.(New England Fiber Fest or whatever they call it at the Big E, in Springfield, Mass.) and then I can settle down to a winter of spinning and knitting without the need to hurry up and get so many pairs of mittens done or so many pairs of socks, etc. I am thinking of making myself a grey aran sweater.
Meanwhile, John and I are beginning to think about our trip to England in June, hoping to find at least one sheep show to attend. And hoping to be able to afford to see “Billy Elliiot” in London.
I’ve not done anything else with goat cheese making since the goat milk from the alpines or whatever kind of goats they were was just too goaty for any of us to be willing to eat. None of us like that smell. This weekend, I take the two goatie girls (Nigerian Dwarf) to be bred. Hopefully, it will be true that their milk, which I’ve tasted twice, and find non goaty, comparatively) will make cheese that doesn’t have that aftertaste that reminds me of goat smell. There are and never will be, any bucks on campus, which I know cuts down on the nasty aftertaste/smell that others find appealing and not nasty. We shall see…
Son and grandkids speak occasionally (used to be a lot before they moved up here) of farming and learning about animals, but so far, they’ve had zero interest in anything but their own chickens. We shall see about that as well. Two of the little goatie girls I bought for them, but if they aren’t going to learn how to care for them, provide some housing and have a plan to ;buy food and other necessities, they aren’t getting the goats. I’d rather someone had them who would take care of them.