Well, actually there’s only ONE billy goat in our story.  And he’s not gruff — just stinky!  🙂

We’ve been buying raw goat’s milk locally from a man who lives up the road since Jo was about six months old.  Peter and I have a strong aversion to the taste of goat’s milk (due to baaaaad experiences with really goaty-tasting milk in the past) so we just give it to the kids.  The man we buy it from is super-picky about what he feeds his goats, so as far as goat milk goes, it’s the best — we just can’t get over our past experiences… ugh!

I was thrilled when I found Eric’s goat milk three years ago — it enables me to feed my kids wholesome raw milk without having to keep and milk a goat myself! 🙂  Both my kids love it.  Henry kind of turned his little nose up at it when he first got home, but now he drinks it enthusiastically.

Eric has been affectionately dubbed the “goat man” in our household.  Not really very flattering, I suppose, but he gets a kick out of it.  We always love going to visit the baby goats that are born each spring.  Eric also takes in bummer lambs (baby sheep that are rejected by their mothers for whatever reason…)  and this year he has NINE little lambs running around in addition to all the mama goats and baby goats.  It’s shades of my childhood whenever we visit — we had quite the menagerie when I was a kid.  My parents were the greatest.  They let us get almost any animal we ever asked for as long as we took good care of it (well, within reason… I never did get that monkey that I begged for…)  I am so thankful for the memories I have and feel like I am kind of cheating by VISITING the goats and lambs instead of raising them with my kids.  It sure is a lot less work this way, though!!  🙂

About a month ago I took the kids up and we got to help feed the lambs their bottles.  Henry was so funny when Eric handed us the first one… he knew exactly what was in that bottle and wasn’t too pleased that the lamb was getting the milk instead of him!  Ha! 

I didn’t get any pictures that time, but I snapped a few of the kids playing out in the pasture last week while we there picking up milk.  They had so much fun — it was hard getting them back into the truck when it was time to leave!

 

 

I love this look on Henry’s face… “um, Mom — is it SAFE???” 

This little lamb was particulary friendly and SO cute — he looked just like a stuffed animal.

And here’s another shot of that sweet, patient mama goat letting her twins climb all over her!

You already saw the picture of “Mr. Stinky” at the top of the page.  Mr. Stinky, the billy goat, comes calling on the ladies twice a year, and boy, does he smell!  As we were walking over to his pen, Joanna and I were talking about how he is the daddy goat and how he smells kind of funny… and as we got closer she plugged her nose and said, “Ohhhh, he does STINK!  Just like Henry!!!”  Oh my… she is settling in to her role as the sister quite well!  (for the record, Henry doesn’t actually stink! 🙂 )

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