Jade: “That’s why his middle name is Spud.”
Colter: “That’s only his nickname.”
Jade: “But I thought it was his middle name! Didn’t we name him that because he loves potatoes?”

jade with the baby goats

Vashti

When I got the “babies!!” call, I ran from the soaproom – but by the time I got there, our newest baby, a girl, was already being licked off by her mama, Vanish.

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We took her into the milk room to dry her off and spent the next ten minutes trying to decide a name for her.

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We ultimately decided on Vashti.

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Isn’t she a cutie?

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2015 kid count: 19 doelings, 14 bucklings
2015 doe status (33 total): 13 doe kidded, 20 left to go
2 sets of quads, 5 sets of triplets, 4 sets of twins, 2 singles

 

What Soap Did You Use Before GMS?

I’m regularly asked if our goat milk soap will be better for someone’s skin than the soap they are currently using.  I’m a bit biased, but my answer is usually a laughing, “Of course!”  I then qualify it to say that everyone’s skin is different and I can’t predict how their skin will react to our goat milk soap.

lilac_blog

But I do know that most of the existing “soaps” (many of them aren’t even actual soap) on the market today are filled with chemicals.  Even those soaps that are marketed for sensitive skin are filled with ingredients that I don’t want on my family’s skin.

In contrast, I can state that all of the soaps that I offer for sale are soaps that I am willing to use on my children’s skin.  If I wouldn’t let my children use it, I wouldn’t make it or sell it.  For me as a mom, that’s the best endorsement I can give.

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In an effort to be unbiased, I asked some of our customers what they used before using GMS soaps.  You can read some of their answers below.

If you’re a regular GMS soap user, what did you use before?

PJ

 

 

“It’s been so long but it was in between lever 2000 or pretty much anything else once I tried GMS I’ve never gone back.”
- Carina

“I had to frequently change our soap before…even using soap that had fewer ingredients or claimed to be all natural would irritate our skin after a month. We’ve been using Goat Milk Stuff for just about two years and we couldn’t imagine using anything else!”
- Anna

“I used Caress before GMS. Have only used it once or twice since switching to your soap and it makes my skin so dry! Don’t know how I did that for so long! I’ve been a GMS addict for 2 or 3 years now. Found you at the Pork Festival in Ohio!”
- Jennifer

“I used to switch body washes a lot because they’d always leave my skin dry and itchy. Soap was always Unscented Dove because it wouldn’t irritate my skin. But I can use any scent of GMS and it has completely changed my skin! I’m never dry, itchy, or irritated.”
- Adela

“I was continually switching it because i could never find anything I really really liked. And I didn’t like the ingredients!! Good thing I found you guys’!”
- Shannon

“Whatever was on sale and all of them left my skin feeling like all the water had been sucked from it (Ivory soap was the least offensive of all of them). Now, of course, we’re hooked and my skin no longer feels like a desert!”
- Susan

“I am very sensitive to whatever is in regular bar soap that it gives me problems (I won’t go into details) so I was amazed I could use GMS without problems. I always used shower gels from Bath and Body Works.”
- Lisa

“It’s been a long while but I think I used Dove bar soap. Since trying GMS, I became completely hooked and won’t use anything else. It’s an addiction but I can live with it!”
- Deb

“Caress body wash but I love my GMS soap now.”
- Deb

“I used Dr Bronner’s peppermint castile soap since the 80′s..but it dried my skin too much. Now it’s Goat Milk Stuff from head to toe…yep I love it as shampoo as well!!”
- Natalie

“Dove and lots of different lotions. My only problem with GMS is trying to decide which wonderful scents to order!”
- Kathleen

“None, really. All of them made my skin break out and stung. The only one that was gentle and that I kinda liked was Dove, but it didn’t feel cleansing some days.”
- Abigail

“Dove or Aveeno body Washes. Tone body wash too – cocoa butter in something always seemed to make my skin feel nice. But nothing since GMS.”
- Mary Beth

“I don’t even remember….! They all dried my skin out.”
- Frances

 

Feeding My Dairy Goats

When I was new to owning goats, I agonized over what to feed them. I poured over the internet finding out what everyone did. I read everything I could and the only thing that everyone agreed on, was that goats need to eat.

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But it seemed nobody could agree on anything else! Everybody did it differently. There was always a “best brand” of feed or minerals to try. Or a new magic additive. For a few years, I kept switching things up. Always on the lookout for the perfect feeding regimen for my goats. I wanted to maximize their milk output and minimize the cost of my feed. I drove my local feed guy crazy with everything I wanted him to mix up and try.

Over the years, my approach to feeding my goats has changed drastically. Goats don’t like change – especially when it comes to their feed. So I stopped changing. And I started simplifying.

They’re dairy goats, so they have high calcium needs. Alfalfa pellets – check!

They’re ruminants, so they need roughage. Grass hay – check!

They have high mineral (especially copper) needs. Loose mineral high in copper – check!

And if they milk too much (which my girls like to do), they can get too skinny, so they need some carbs for weight gain. Whole oats – check!

That’s pretty much it. I’ve stopped worrying about how much milk they produce (a huge part of that is due to good genetics) and just started to focus on meeting their nutritional needs and keeping them healthy.

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And do you know what I found? The goats like it simple. They like that it never changes. My goats generally stay healthy and they make lots of milk.  And when they’re happy and making lots of milk – everybody is happy!

PJ

 

 

Note: Here is a link to some more information on the website about Feeding Dairy Goats.

Jade: “Mom, can we start the movie now?”
PJ: “Wait for Hewitt, he’s almost finished milking.”
Jade: “Well can’t we just start it and then back it up when Hewitt gets here?”

Zaria, Zebedee, and Zilch

I grabbed a stack of towels, leaving Baxter, Bedford, Raphael, and Renaissance in the milk room, and ran back out to the stalls. Zenith was halfway out of one of the regular kids, pushing her head against Colter’s legs.

Instead of trying to get around her, I just climbed the fence, landing on the other side with a thud, getting my towel ready just in time to catch the first baby!

“It’s a girl,” Greyden announced.

After several names were tossed around, we settled on Zaria.

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Two minutes later, her little brother Zebedee was born!

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We took the two of them into the milk room, and started drying them off.goat birth zenith_blog_2

A couple of minutes later, as we were getting ready to feed them, Indigo came through the door with another baby in her arms! “She had another one!”

It was a doeling that we decided to name Zilch, since when we’d checked for more babies, we’d felt zilch.

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We got them their collars, filled their bellies with warm milk, took a picture of them, took care of Zenith and the other babies who were also running around the milk room, and declared that it was time for lunch. We’d just had six babies in less than an hour!

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2015 kid count: 18 doelings, 14 bucklings
2015 doe status (33 total): 12 doe kidded, 21 left to go
2 sets of quads, 5 sets of triplets, 4 sets of twins, 1 single