Saturday, May 19, 2012

My Mother's Day Surprise

Mother’s Day is that time when you’re supposed to sleep in, get spoiled and then spend hours cleaning up after all the “surprises” your spouse & children made for you (Seriously… If you ever cleaned up after my crew when they cook/create, you’d fully understand the horror) …

I made mine more difficult by impatience.........

Casper was due to kid on the 11th. Mom had another appointment on Monday and I knew that with my luck, Casper would kid the moment I pulled out of the drive way Monday morning. I needed to attend the birth to pull the kids, so I decided to induce her. A shot of Lute & a shot of Dex and I settled into a routine of frequent barn checks.

Last check was a lil before 4am on Mother’s Day… Sat out there for about 20 minutes watching her. Ligaments weren’t fully softened yet… no goo and no sign of impending labor (she was up munching on alfalfa pellets) so I went back to bed.

Up again at 6:35am (was supposed to be 6:00am, I accidentally hit snooze) and when I arrive at the barn it’s pure chaos!!

Casper had kidded and her pen mate had stolen one of the kids, Casper was screaming at the end of the run farthest from the barn and the new would be momma was snorting & fussing. One dry lil one and one tiny lil one, cold, still partially in the sack.

Gathered them up, and brought them in the house… It has been a buck year for me. No doelings… So of course it would be my luck that the cold kid left on the ground in the barn drama was a doeling! The ONLY doeling! And of course it would make sense that the buckling was the warm, fully dry, vigorous one.

Oh life how I do loathe your sense of humor sometimes…..

After warming the doeling and failing to get her to eat, we had to resort to tube feeding. Had a few moments where I just wasn’t sure if she’d be ok or not… After food was in her and she had her shot of Bo-Se and a Vit E capsule she was up walking and everything was normal… except that she would not suck and what lil bit of milk dripped into her mouth she wouldn’t swallow. Finally after 2 ½ days of all her meals coming via the tube into her stomach, she started nursing as if she had never an issue one.

So now I can share her with y’all…. My very first, bred by me, with my herd name, keeper is Noodleville’s Trick or Treat AKA- “Tricks”

Newborn Tricks looking a bit bewildered..
Isn’t she just precious!!!??? Her brother, currently unnamed, is a pretty boy… He’s longer and has a longer neck, but in all else they are pretty equal. Would love it if she were a bit longer, but I’m certainly not complaining!

Casper x Tonka Twins

New babies meeing the March doelings.... Heidi was NOT impressed! 

I had my doubts about Casper…. She was dam raised and a bit timid, and after my "Bloody Battle of Wills" with the last first freshener, I was not looking forward to milking. Her teats looked a bit short too, so I prepared for a fight and hand cramps.

Casper at 4 months old
Needless to say I was pleasantly surprised when I had neither!! Casper was a bit nervous and unsure, but stood still anyways.....Her udder is butter soft and out of all my does, she is by far the easiest to milk.

Here is a picture of her udder at 5 days fresh and about 9 hours full (forgive the bad haircut):

She actually has a fore udder!!!! Ginger has hardly any fore, Sabrina’s was badly pocketed and Bleu’s is ok, but I’d like it to be more smoothly blended and extend a bit further. Casper though, I have no complaints about and I see this maturing into a really pretty udder...

Could be blended a lil smoother, but it's very well attached and balanced so I'm happy to keep a doeling from her. She could use a smidge more height in the rear udder too, but there's lots of attachments, its wide and her teat placement is great!

Her doeling has a higher escutcheon than her dam, and a more level rump, so perhaps luck will favor me and I’ll have a doeling who is an improvement over her dam…. That is the goal anyways...

Tricks 6 Days Old
I can’t keep many goats… Can’t afford the feed, don’t have the space and can’t handle the work load, so I’m frequently forced to make cuts. I’m not as attached to Casper as I am Bleuberry, so I decided, before she kidded, that I would sell her if she had a doeling for me to keep.

Made arrangements with a 1st time dairy goat owner, and let her know that if she didn’t have a doeling, then she could take Comanche instead…

These folks are really nice and have been working hard to get everything set up and ready for Casper… So it is a bit bittersweet that I’m loving her stand manners, her udder, ease of milking and that at 5 days fresh, she milked 6.4lbs of milk. Got in touch with the new future owners to give them a choice of taking Comanche bred, or Casper in milk and they have their hearts set on Casper.

I keep telling myself it is only logical to let her go.. I have her daughter and I want to add another doe, but this is one that isn’t going to be easy.

Either way, I hold to my word, and they’ve already shopped for her and are pretty excited, so next Sunday Casper goes on to her new home. Thankfully they aren’t too far away and they are also open to me breeding Tonka to her again this fall and we may split the kid crop if the numbers/gender work out, so all is not lost.

With potential travel in my future (hopefully getting mom into MD Anderson) having one less milker will make things easier on my helpers too….

You might recall my husband's attempt at goat milking...

If not you can read all about it here:
Helpful Husband Extraordinaire

Needless to say, me keeping more milkers than I need will be doing hubby no favors when he is my milker.... He's more than willing to help, always is.... But it's best to make this as easy on everyone as

And since y’all haven’t got to see Tonka in a while… Here he is at about a year old.....

Tonka out on a browse eating walk as a reward for tolerating the bath & shave so well.
I’m so proud of how he’s turned out and am looking forward to watching his doeling grow. He got shaved & bathed as I had intended to take him to the Big Buck Bonanza, but financial obligations with mom’s medical issues came first so we’ll have to try again next year…

Tonka was added to the ADGA Young Sire Development Program with an ETA of 69-75 and I’m really looking forward to freshening daughters from him.

I didn’t notice it at first, but if you look at the kids, Tricks has Casper’s pattern/markings (even similar shaped white splashed up both sides), but in Tonka’s colors, while the lil' buck has Tonka’s markings/pattern with Capser’s colors.

Sweet baby boy...

Anywho… I hope all the mothers out there had a great day and I do hope all the daughters/sons take time EVERY day to appreciate their mothers.... Mother's Day is a great time for presents & treating mom to something special, but life is short and unpredictable so every day you wakeup is a day to be thankful for.

Speaking of moms… My mom finally got her diagnosis. It wasn’t what we had hoped for, not at all.

She has a rare form of leukemia called Chronic Neutrophilic Leukemia. There haven’t been many cases documented, and at this time, no cure. Mom is hanging in there though. Some days she’s a trooper about it all, and she has her glum moments from time to time, but we’re not giving up.

My momma is one of the most head strong people I’ve ever encountered, if anyone can beat this, it’s her. It gives me hope to see her strong, determined and hopeful.......When the inevitable times of doubt creep over her, she has me for a flamboyant, never ending distraction, a job I take VERY seriously….

No matter what, we’re gonna make it through this!

They say there is no cure, and gave all sorts of morbid numbers and tossed life span terms around as if we were discussing the weather…. But just because they haven’t found a cure, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, it just means they haven’t found it yet! Here's hoping the paperwork for MD Anderson is processed soon so we can explore more options...


Winona said...

You have such lovely goats. I love reading your blog. I will keep your mom in my prayers.

* Crystal * said...

Aww thank you so much! Prayers are greatly appreciated :)

happy bleats said...

Your new babies are beautiful...Our Leroy did a great job his first season as well..we even have one that looks like your trick..Yvette is her name : )
Im so sorry for what your mom is going through... she is blessed to have such a dedicated daughter...she will be in our prayers and you as well for strength...Blessings
oh my new web site address is officelive account was canceled..a huge pain lol..but we got a new one up and running...enjoy your week end...

Michelle said...

What beautiful babies! Tonka is gorgeous! Wish we were closer so I could breed Miracle to him. :-) Sounds like you had quite a Mother's Day.

Continued prayers for your Momma.

Anonymous said...

You are absolutely right, doctors only have guesses and I think they tell you the worst so you know how hard to fight. My DH grandfather was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in January and we were told that time was limited. He went through his first round of chemo out of 4 and got retested. No new cells the masses he had have shrunk by half and they are saying only one more round of chemo not 3 and then pills. So yes we were given the worst news and are now looking at "cured" so don't give up the fight!

* Crystal * said...

Thanks so much HappyBleats :) Sorry about your old website, but happy you've been able to rebuild.

Michelle- I wish you were closer too!! I'm pretty pleased with Tonka, he's maturing so nicely and is the sweetest tempered boy..... I can not wait to freshen his daughter :)

Anonymous- Thank you so much for your kind thoughts..... I'm so happy your grandfather was able to beat the odds & shock the doctors, hopefully my mom will do the same :)

Jennifer said...

We LOVE Casper! She is such a great girl and so patient on the milk stand. Fresh milk, Cajeta and now our first batch of cheese...what a blessing! Not to mention a little boy who doesn't have to be coaxed to drink milk anymore! Thank You for all of your help!

Michelle said...

I've given you the Liebster Blog award. :-)

* Crystal * said...

Hi Jennifer!! I am so happy Casper is working out so well & your first dairy goat is a good fit! She is such a sweetie..... Couldn't have asked for a better home for her. :) Loved meeting your munchkin.... Such a smart lil boy & I'm thrilled he likes to drink his milk now :)

Thank you Michelle! I'm currently stuck with just my cell for internet & since Blogger changed up the dashboard thingy ma jig, I'm now limited to what I can do on my phone (Why, why, why do they have to change things??!!) so I will have to follow all the Liebster rules when I'm at a computer again... You don't happen to know how to set Blogger back to the old style do you?

Michelle said...

Crystal, I cannot express how much I can relate to your conundrum. I wish I knew how to keep things like we like them, for sure. Sometimes change is improvement, and I like that, but lately it seems like websites are changing just to so something different. NOT a good reason! If you figure it out, let me know, okay? ;-)

Patty said...

As always, I LOVE you goat pics! I'm keeping your mom in my prayers. God is still the healer, and though we don't have a cure, He surely does. I'm praying your mom can stay strong, keep fighting, and trust in Jesus. Big hugs to all of you! :)