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Blog 7/17/2014

Summer has finally arrived!  And while mucking out goat sheds when it is hot and humid is not pleasant, all the baby goats have now been born, and they are settling into their summer routines, including sitting under the huge pine tree in their yard and letting all that lovely pine pitch get all over their nice white fur before they rub it into the dust.  This has been a dry summer, with little rain even though we got one day of heavy rain last week.  Our last pregnant Saanen, Beatrice, finally kidded on a Wednesday, July 9th, and the grandchildren decided to call these two little doelings, Sunny and Scully, with Scully having something to do with “Jake and the Neverland Pirates”?   They are precious!


Sunny and Skully

We’ve had our first cook-out on the 4thof July, and the following day, got to see our very own fireworks from the comfort of our living room!  Our neighbor across the street put on this amazing show, and we had front row seats! 




fireworks indoors

Last week, both Bill and I also went to visit friends who live on the water.  We each tried our hand at “jet-skiing” and then enjoyed some wonderful rowing and swimming and great company before a fabulous dinner of vino, stuffed clams, Asian noodles, homemade coleslaw and nectarine pie.  Yum-yum!  The garden is coming in one crop at a time now and we are savoring fresh blueberries every day now, and lots of fresh cabbage and sugar snap peas for those tasty coleslaws.  The turnips and broccoli are in and beets are now ready and I started harvesting some of those yesterday.  My sister-in-law, who hails from Russia, gave me a good recipe for those freshly shredded beats: just add one shredded Granny Smith apple and a little mayonnaise, and presto! You have a summer salad fit for a king!


One of our granddaughters from Virginia arrived yesterday (aged 7) and she will be with us for the next three weeks.  It is such a treat to have the time to spend with her as she grows up.  She loves the animals and is a big help feeding the goats and the dogs and collecting the eggs.  Next week, Stripes will be ready to wean, so we will be able to start milking Maggie, her mom, one of our Saanens, and start getting some of that fresh goat’s milk.  Bill is already thinking of what type of cheese to make.  We had a buyer looking at Lucky today, too.  Lucky is one of our baby Nubian goats who was born last March.  They are definitely interested and will probably take her mid-August , which may mean we can try milking her mom, Bernadette, too, who is also Nubian.  And by Labor Day, Beatrice should be ready to wean her babies, Sunny and Scully, so we may have three goats in milk come the fall.  I may finally get the chance to start soap making!




School is out, but summer is usually a time for reading and reflecting and more research, and this year seems to be especially busy with some extra reading for a research project that is developing.   Our church choir is also in the final stretch of making a CD that should be ready by early fall, too, so there are lots of activities accompanying the usual summer harvest.  Within a few weeks, the orchard should start coming in with peaches and pears up first, and the tomatoes will soon be turning red.  After that, it is almost non-stop canning until school starts.  It will be extra fun this year with our Virginia granddaughter and our other two local granddaughters who are about the same age, helping with the cooking and canning.  They are a joy in the kitchen!  I rejoined the YMCA for more swimming this year, and I am thoroughly enjoying the special excursions to the lake or beach or the “Y” pool for swimming.


Everyone seems to be in their “summer mode” now, and visiting relatives and relaxing with cook-outs and fun on the water, riding bikes and savoring the long hours of outdoor sunlight.  Cool breezes every night have scared away most of the mosquitos, too, so evenings have been especially pleasant.  A favorite past-time of mine lately is one I used to do as a child: just lay back and watch the clouds!  Did you ever imagine different animal shapes of clouds when you were a kid? 






It’s a great activity to do with one’s children or grandchildren, costly absolutely nothing, and feeds our imagination.  God has given us such a wonderful world to enjoy!  Happy cloud-gazing!!







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