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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!
NORMAL

Ahhhh, normal. Whatís it like? Normal sounds so pleasant. Goat farmers might as well forget about ever being normal. Unless normal means staying up all hours of the night during kidding season, working just as hard if not harder in the winter time as you do in the summer, never having vacations unless itís for an hour or two, and yet, in spite of all the trials, you get this goofy proud grin that you own such gorgeous animals. Who gives a fig about sleep, weather, winter, cold, comfort, and vacations?

Last Friday night Lee and I was coming home with the last load of round bales. The truck and the flatbed trailer were loaded down, it was late and dark out. So dark you could see in the lit up houses as you drove slowly down our country road. There was everyone safely inside their homes, watching television or sitting around the dining room table eating, all looked content to be resting at home.

ďGee, is that what a normal evening looks like?Ē I asked Lee. ďWonder what it feels like to be normal?Ē

Lee just mumbled something because he was busy trying to navigate slowly on a very narrow bumpy road where oncoming drivers seemed to think they were the only ones that should be on it. Weíd just got off another road slightly bigger than the road to our farm. Sure, that one was a two lane, but only because a lot of the people living on that road protested about it being a car and a half wide and really wanted it to be broadened to a two lane, with all the country traffic on it.

What did the powers that be do? Why, of course, they put a line down the center of that narrow road, never widened it, and told everyone, now you have a two lane road. I guess they think country folk are idiots.

Now, true, part of giving up normalcy when you are a goat farmer might be because you live in the country, but, you see, they wonít let us bring goats to town, so we have to live in the country. Country living is fraught with strangeness. Bad roads, electric out half the time and bad phones. If your land phone goes out here, you are informed that no one can come and fix it for a week or two. So, you go get a cell phone to have some contact with the outside world. Then, with your cell phone, you find yourself running from one end of the house to the other, trying to stand by different windows to get a little bit of a reception and even then you are guessing every other word what the person on the other end is trying to say.

Internet. Oh, my. You get dial up out in the country and you know how the phones go down so you donít have internet very consistently and if you do, the phone company wonít upgrade to DSL because itís not worth it out there for them to put the money in it. Naturally, no cable out there to get internet that way. You could go dish satellite for both internet and TV, but they think country folk are wealthy and that certainly costs. We opted to just go dish for the internet and you pay greatly for the equipment and hugely each month for the service and they time you and punish you if you use it too much. The speed is a little better than dial-up and at least you can be on the phone and the internet at the same time, if the phone is working that week, but you do pay for it through the nose.

And, you need country vehicles to get in and out of your country home or farm and it has to be rugged 4-wheel drive vehicles. Itís not a matter of being macho that you get these types of vehicles, itís just trying to get to work or the store from your home because the roads are only cleaned from snow and ice in the winter if there is a school day. If school is called off because of weather, you are on your own. The list goes on and on about country living.

Now, top this off with being a goat farmer. Nope, donít expect to ever be normal again. The hours can be long, from doing kidding, to keeping up with wormings and shots and trimming feet, to feeding, to bringing in hay for winter, tending any sick animals, and stocking up.

Stocking up? Thatís being prepared with wormers, medicines, feed, hay, and supplies and also supplies for yourself. Remember, sometimes you just canít get out to get supplies, roads are too bad, or you canít leave because of girls kidding. Be prepared. I know town folk who go to the store every day because itís no problem. Country folk and goat farmers always have to think in the future to keep things stocked up. Because if anyone is going to be without electric, it will be the country folk, and if any are to have horrible roads, it will be the country folk.

Why? Well, think of a herd of goats. It they arenít happy, they bellow at you, ďWhereís my hay?! We are hungry! You are suppose to take better care of us than this!Ē Thatís like town or city folk. Thereís a lot more of them to make a greater noise so everyone runs around to tend them first.

Now, how about one little lone goat or one person in comparison to a herd or city folks. That one lone little person or goat goes, ďBaa? Baa? I donít have electric, my road is snowed in, the phoneís out.Ē Or maybe you have ten people living on your country road. Ten little voices donít compare to a whole monster herd of loud voices complaining. So, town or city folk get the best first.

Oddly enough, most country folk and goat farmers accept this situation. Why? Thereís something wonderful about living in the country. The space, the quiet, the beauty, the freedom from prying eyes and snoopy neighbors, and the danger. Danger? Ever come face to face with a snake or an unexpected raccoon? Talk about the thrill of retreat.

And, then thereís the goats. Lovely beautiful beasts that eat unwanted brush and make your place look like a park. Sure, a lot of work is put into those goats, but arenít they grand to look at? I can see right now, Iíll never be normal.

THE END


 

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