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12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS
4 H FRETTER-ER
A BUCK GROWS UP
ADAPTING
AGAIN, THE SKY IS FALLING
ALL YOU NEED IS ... CARDBOARD
AMANNAMEDJED
AND THEN IT GOT COLD
AND THEN IT WARMED UP TO ZERO
ANGRY GOAT FARMER
ANTIQUE GOAT FARMING
ANYTHING BUT THAT
ARE BUCKS EVER BABIES
AROMA THERAPY
ARTFUL DODGERS
ARTIC FRONT
AUTUMN BOQUET
B U B - B U B - B U B
BABY BACK EXCUSE
BABY MONITORS
BACK TO NATURE
BAIT
BARKING AT GOATS
BARN SOUR TRUCK
BATTERIES NOT INCLUDED
BE HAPPY
BEAUTY MISTAKES
BEHAVIORS
BEHIND THE GATE
BIG 10-4 GOAT FARMER
BIKINI WEDNESDAYS
BILLBOARD GOAT FARMING
BILLIES & STICKWEEDS
BLIZZARD OF 92
BLONDE GOAT FARMER
BLONDE HUMOR
BOTTLE BABIES
BOTTLE BABY TALK
BOTTLE BABY WITHDRAWAL
BOXING SUNBEAMS
BRONCHITIS.
BRUISE OR DIRT
BUCK LOVE
BUCKETHEAD
BUCKS IN STOCK
CALLING YOOOOU
CAN'T TOUCH THIS
CANE I DO IT?
CARPAL TUNNEL HAY
CATCHING PEARL
CHICK CHICK CHICORY
CHOCOLATE PLUM
CHRISTMAS KIDDING
CHUCK
COLD IS OUR FRIEND NOT
COUGH DROP WORMER
COUNTING
CRUMPLED
CUD CHEWING CONTENTMENT
DAYCATIONS
DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
DELOUSED
DOES ANYBODY REALLY KNOW ...
DOES ON KIDDING
DOWNSIZING
DRAMA QUEEN
DRENCHED!
DRESS FOR SUCCESS
DUCT TAPE.
DUMPSTER RAIDERS
EARPUGS
EGG SHELL MASSACRE
EMMITT
EMPTY NEST SYNDROME
EQUIPMENT OPERATORS - DANCERS
ESCAPE ARTIST
ESCORT SERVICE
FALLING SKY
FARM WALK
FARMER C S I
FEEL LIKE A NUT
FIRST IMPRESSIONS
FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE
FIRST YOU TAKE YOUR SOCK
FLOATING MUSHROOMS
FORKS IN THE ROAD
FULL OF BULL
G G
GATE ATTACK !!!!
GIRL WATCHER
GLIDING
GLOBAL SUPPORT CENTER
GNAWED AND BASICALLY CHEWED
GOAT ADDICTION
GOAT CELEBRATIONS
GOAT FARMER SONG
GOAT FARMER WEIGHT TRAINING
GOAT FARMER'S CREED
GOAT FARMING CAMP
GOAT HOLIDAY GIFTS
GOAT HUNTING
GOAT KLEENEX
GOAT LANGUAGE
GOAT OLYMPICS
GOAT PROFILER
GOAT SCIENTIST
GOAT WHEELS
GOAT WRITER
GOATS RULE
GOOD GRIEF
GOT RUNS?
GOTTA WORK KIDS
GRAND CANYON OF CHILDRESS
GREAT KIDDERS
HAULING GOATS
HAVE MILK WILL TRAVEL
HAVEN'T GOT A CLUE
HAY MONITOR
HE-BE-GEE-BE'S
HELP! HELP! HELP!
HELP! I'M IN THE BATHTUB
HELPING HOOVES
HERD OF TURTLES
HERE COMES KIDDING TIME - A CHRISTMAS TUNE
HOBBLE, HOBBLE
HOLIDAY TRADITIONS (A GROANER)
HOME DECORATOR
HORNLESS
HOT CHOCOLATE
HOW TO BUY GOATS
HOW YOU FEELING?
HUGS
HUNDERD YEARS
HUNTING LUMBERJACKS
I APPROVE THIS MESSAGE
I FEEL PRETTY
I PREFER LONG EYE LASHES
I REALLY DO HAVE A HOME
I'LL HOLD HIM BACK
I'M A LITTLE TEAPOT
I'M STILL HERE?
INDIAN SUMMER
INNOCENT 1ST TIME KIDDERS
INTERNET AUCTIONS
INVESTMENTS
IRON WILL
IT TOOK TWO
JINGLE BELL GOATS
JOKE - GET A JOB!
JOYFUL
JUMPY LITTLE SNOWBIRD
JUST 1 MORE GOAT
KEYSTONE KOPS
KID CATCHING
KID IN A BOX
KID SENSORY OVERLOAD
KIDMARES
KNUCKLE SANDWICHES
LADYLIKE BUCK SELLER
LAST BUCK STANDING
LEFT OVERS
LETTERS
LETTERS FROM THE FARM
M. D. GOAT
MAD AGGIE
MANIPULATE WHAT?
MASTER BLASTER
MAYBE THIS TIME
MEMBER ME
MIND CONTROL
MR. SNUFFY
MUSHROOM HUNTING
MUTTER MUTTER
NAMING GOATS
NANNY BERRIES ~ DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
NEW "KID" ... SHOWING
NEW HAY IN THE HOUSE
NEW KIDS.
NEW YEARíS RESOLUTIONS
NORMAL
OCTOBER KIDDING
ODE TO ODOR
OH, MY
OUCH
PANIC ATTACK!
PAW PAWS
PHILOSOPHY OF HYPOCRISY
PHONE CALLS
PHONE CLASS
PICK POCKETS
PIRANHA PEN
PLAYING DEAD
PLEASED AS PUNCH
PLEASING GOAT CUSTOMERS
PLOP
POOF POOF
PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE
PRESENTS
PRISCILLA THE HUN
PRO WRESTLER OR PUPPY
PROFESSIONAL POO CHECKER
PSYCH ME OUT
PUTTING ON A SHOW
QUIPS & QUOTES
QUIPS-N-QUOTES II
REAP THE WILD WIND
RECORD KEEPING
REDNECK TANK TOP
REFEREE
REQUESTS
ROAD TRIP 2003
ROCK ON
ROLL'UM ROLL'UM
ROLLIN', ROLLIN', ROLLIN'
RUB DIRT ON IT
S-T-R-E-S-S
SANDWICHED
SAWDUST.
SCHEDULING
SCREAMING BANSHEES
SECRET AGENT
SHAGA GOOBLE SHAGA BLIP
SHANNIGANS & KID SLOBBERS
SHORT TIGHT STEPS & OTHER ODD EVENTS
SHOTS
SHOULD EVERYONE VOTE
SLEEP DEPRIVATION
SMART GOATS
SMUDGED
SNAP, CRACKLE, POP
SNATCHED BALD
SNEAKY
SONG OF THE FROG
SPIES, SECRET AGENTS, SPOOKS, AND OTHER GOATS
SSSNAKE
STAMPEDE!
STARGATE BOERS
STEAM-IRON SANDWICHES
STEP BY STEP
STICK IT WHERE
STOMPING ORANGE STRINGS
STUCK AGAIN
STUDENT ANALOGIES AND METAPHORS
STUPID IS...
SUNSHINE BOO BOO'S
SUPER HERO
SUPER SUCKERS
SUPPER AT SEVEN A.M.
SURVEY SAYS
SURVIVING KIDDING
SWASH - BUCKLING BUCKS
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS
TALKING POCKETS
TATTOOING
THANK GOODNESS FOR MUD
THE $37.50 BUCK
THE 2003 DARWIN AWARDS
THE COWBOY WAY
THE DACHSHUND AND THE LEOPARD
THE DANGERS OF GUM BOOTS
THE FARM WOOKIE
THE FLYING GOATZANIES
THE FRAGRANCE OF HAY
THE GAME'S AFOOT
THE GOAT WHISPERER
THE MOB SQUAD
THE MORAL BUCK
THE PET CHICKEN
THE PIED PIPER
THE PLAN
THE SCARECROW GOAT SELLER
THE SMELL OF MONEY
THE TALKING GOAT
THE TARP ANNIHILATOR
THE THINKER
THE TICK
THE TRUTH ABOUT DOGS
THE V WORD
THE WINDY TAX
THE WORM HAS TURNED
THEN THE KNEE DOCTOR SAID
THIS END UP
THUMP, BANG, WHOOP, AND HOLLER
THURSDAY, THURSDAY
TIE THE ROPE TO THE HAMMER
TOO MUCH FENCE
TORNADO ALLEY
TORPEDOS AND TIDAL WAVES
TOSS THE BLOCK
TOY TRUCK
TRAINING HUMANS
TRUE LOVE
TWITCHY HANKEY
UGH DAYS
UNCLE ARTHUR
UNWITTINGLY
USING CAFFEINE WISELY
WALK LIKE A TURTLE
WALK ON THE WILD SIDE
WALK THIS WAY
WANNA BUY A GOAT (WINK, WINK, WINK)
WARNING LABLES
WAS THAT 65 OR 66?
WAS THAT CHRISTMAS?
WAS THAT THE WIND
WATER BUCKET TOAD
WAY TO THE HEART
WEANING WEANERS
WEE GOAT FARMERS
WELFARE GOATS
WHAT A DAY
WHAT DAY IS IT
WHAT'D YOU SAY?
WHATSTH THISTH
WHEN LIFE HANDS YOU VEGETABLES.
WHERE'S THE BRAKES
WHOOWEE
WIDE LOADS
WILD GOAT MILKING
WINTER LIST
WOE, DISPAIR...
WRONG.TURN!
YOU CALL HIM WHAT?
YOU COME HERE, NO, YOU COME HERE, NOÖ
ZAPPED!
WHAT? WAS THAT CHRISTMAS?
by
Connie S. Reynolds
autumnfarmboers.com
Ravenswood, WV

Something just flew by me and I think it was Christmas. You can get just too busy on a farm at times. Important events can get left in the dust and all you can do is scratch your head and say, "How did that happen?" and try not to do that again.

For a couple of years now Lee and I have kidded out most the full bloods in Oct. in order to free up the barn for January kidding of 4-H wethers that would be for sale. This has worked reasonably well, leaving time for our favorite event, Christmas. And, in our family, not only is there Christmas but also all these wonderful birthdays of people in the family we love that were born close to and after Christmas.

This summer we made an investment and bought a couple of young bucks from some very nice people in order to add new bloodlines to the herd. We also had some young full bloods reaching a year old (when we like to breed them) and Voila! The new nine month old buck was put in with these yearling full blood cuties and also any other unbred, short, mature full blood doe, and a December kidding it was going to be, besides the October kidding.

Business wise, this is a good move to be producing new kids from these new bloodlines to put up for sale to recoup the cost of the buck, but I lost Christmas. The second batch of full bloods would be kidding throughout December, which means a lot of time at the barn, late nights, sometimes all night, and then being too tired to get very festive over Christmas.

Some people may be a Bah Humbugger to Christmas, but not us. We love Merrying and Christmasing all over the place. But, duty called, the girls needed care, and also any bottle babies that happened to be produced.

We were just weaning the October bottle kids when along came the December bottle kids. Now the October does wanted to bless our socks off and produced a lot of triplets, which I kept taking one away to bottle feed since it was always the two teated does that produced them. Our policy is to take one kid away to bottle feed if the doe only has two functional teats.

Not to be out done, the December girls decided to show the October girls how to really kid and not only did the December two teated does have triplets, but they also were having four and five kids! So eight brand new bottle babies appeared on the scene and more to come at any minute, Iím sure.

So, a week before Christmas I was talking to mom and the way she worded Christmas, it sounded like Christmas was already over. I remember exclaiming, "Oh no, mom, donít tell me Iíve sat down at the barn on a bucket and lost Christmas!" She had to laugh at that one and assure me that Christmas had yet to happen.

Still, I had no time to send out Christmas cards or put up decorations, not with the girls keeping me busy, plus doing regular farm chores. But, I did take the sack off a foot tall decorated Christmas tree mom had given me years ago and also took out a small Santaís village that my sister gave me last year, and proudly sat them up in front of the picture window in the living room. Then add the Rubber Maid tubs of bottle kids under the decorations, it was just down right festive.

When the family was all invited to be together at momís & dadís on Christmas Eve, Lee and I had been busy with kidding, plus putting up extra kidding stalls getting ready to put the 4-H girls in when they hit 145 days for their kidding. We arrived late for the festivities, looking like farmer zombies, terribly tired. And, we ran smack dab into jolly people. Through bleary eyes, these happy rambunctious folks, eating Christmas snacks, handing out presents, seemed like an alien race to us.

I whispered to Lee, "Do regular town folk really have that much energy?"

He whispered back, "Itís a sugar high." Ahhhh, and cookies were being used heavily that night. Made sense.

So, after seeing what jolly Christmas town life was like and going back to our regular kidding life of sleeping in our clothes on the couch and easy chair, waiting to jump up at a moments notice to attend a kidding, it made you pause and think. Particularly when you jump up in the middle of the night near Christmas to chase bottle babies and put them back in their tubs. Was this really how to spend Christmas?

For instance, one night Lee thought he heard something over the baby monitor connected to the kidding barn and he leaped to his feet from his easy chair, and took off almost in a run. The bottle babies were all nestled in their tubs in the living room until Lee did this and one particular little doe kid leaped straight up and over the tub and took off at a dead run at Leeís heels. Iím figuring she was thinking if something had scared Lee that badly that he took off, she wasnít going to stick around to see what it was. I had to chase her down and put her back in her tub, making a mental note to get the bottle babies moved to the garage in a bedded down plastic wading pool and a hog panel wrapped around it to keep the babies in.

So, next year we donít plan on kidding in December. No sense in missing Christmas. But, just in case my plans get messed up, how do you feel about receiving your Christmas card in September?

THE END

 

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