Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Loveable Max!


Could he be any cuter???


The next picture cracked me up.  I assumed the goat would learn to act like the dog, but looks like Esther has decided to be goat-like:

IMG_4172    IMG_4198_12_1_1 IMG_4199_13_1_1 IMG_4200

Thank goodness Max is feeling MUCH better!  After a few doses of pepto bismol and a round of penicillin and B12, he is doing well!  He nibbles on everything…the buttons on my shirt, my ponytail, my ring, toes, books, and as you can see here, paper towels:


The horses didn’t know what to think about Max the night we brought him home, but they have warmed up to him.  (I think Jeryn was telling him that he still likes horses the best).  We found out that Max loves animal crackers.  We already knew Esther did.

IMG_4222_16_1_1 IMG_4231_21_1_1


IMG_4232_22_1_1 IMG_4233_23_1_1 

We fixed a bucket of warm water and gave Max a bath this morning.  The only thing I could get to quickly was a bottle of Head & Shoulders, so Max shouldn’t be having any dandruff anytime soon :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Goat Rope or Bust.

Goat Ropers.  It was a term we used in junior high on up to describe the kids that dressed like cowboys at school.  They wore the tight wranglers, belt buckles big enough to fry an egg on, and sounded really country.  (Like more country than me).  No disrespect to the “goat ropers”…it was not to poke fun, it was more like an association.  For instance…those kids are baseball players, those are basketball players, those girls are cheerleaders, those are band kids, and those kids rodeo/show, etc.  In fact, I always wanted to be in FFA and to this day don’t know why I didn’t participate.


Make no mistake, I was no city slicker.  In my mind, I was a cowgirl.  I loved helping with the cattle, enjoyed the horses and didn’t mind to get dirty.  My summers were filled with long days in the hayfields and I loved getting to check out of school early for “cattle working” days.  I caught crawdads and went fishing, and did stuff with my cousins like sort chickens for the sheer enjoyment of it.  I never grew out of doing that stuff, but somewhere between my forest green Rocky Mountain jeans and junior high, I traded in my Justins for a pair of Nikes.

IMG_4061 IMG_4068 IMG_4051 IMG_4052 IMG_4054 IMG_4055

However, I also secretly dreamed of being a “goat roper.”  I loved the country life, the adrenaline that comes with competing in an event, and I thought about the day that I would not be too scared to fly around a set of barrels effortlessly.


That day never came, so I married a goat roper.  More like a calf roper, but stay with me.  Then, when I had a couple of kids of my own, it was important to me for them to be “country kids.”  Not because that makes you one iota better than a city kid. It doesn’t.  But just because being around animals is a learning experience…an adventure…it teaches you about responsibility…and it helps you to appreciate the mighty God that we serve!  Every day, you can see his handiwork displayed in the gentleness of a deer grazing in an open pasture, the beauty of a sunrise or sunset, or the miracle in the birth of a new baby calf or a long awaited foal.

IMG_4106 IMG_4050

These are the things that I loved about growing up on a farm.  In my lifetime I have had cats, dogs, ducks, chickens, geese, rabbits, horses, cattle, fish, turtles, frogs, and probably some other stuff if I thought longer.  I have nursed wild rabbits with broken legs, and held baby deer rescued from the hay cutters.  One thing I never had though, was a goat.

IMG_4139 IMG_4141

But last night, that all changed.  Here goes the wild and crazy tale.  Mario’s calves had gotten huge and were too big to rope.  So he trades in with our friend, Matthew.  Matthew comes over to get the calves.  I mention that he should be on a lookout for a little goat for Jeryn to practice roping and tying on.  Mario rolls his eyes.  Later I called Matthew on the phone and left a message that Mario and I had discussed, and we agreed that it might be good for the kids to have a goat.  A local rodeo has goat ribbon racing and goat tying every weekend, and if they showed interest, we might think about that.  So I ended the message with, “So in all seriousness, be on he lookout for a little goat.”  As I’m thanking him at the end of the message, Jeryn is in the background saying, ‘no mama, not a lil’ goat—a BIG goat!”  IMG_4120 We went to community group with the kids last night and Mario’s parents were up for letting the kids spend the night.  I needed to study and Mario and I thought it might be nice to have a quiet evening to ourselves.  Except we ended up getting a goat.  And castrating it.


On our way home from community group, phone rings.  It’s Matthew, and it’s 9:00pm, he’s leaving the sale barn. “You still want a goat for your boy?”he asked.  “I’ll be there in ten minutes.” 

Closer to 9:30, Matthew shows up with a goat.  I asked for a female…It was a male.  A guy that had bought a full load at the sale barn couldn’t fit him on his trailer so he told Matthew to grab him off the back if he wanted him.  I hated to complain about a free goat, but I wasn’t planning on a male…

“Not to be picky, Matthew, but this is not a female.” 

Oh but he’s been “fixed.”  As we stood there talking, Mario discovered that he had indeed NOT been “fixed.”  Matthew offers to “cut” him on the spot.  So here I stand at 9:30pm with my new goat, being castrated on my lawn in the light of the moon and porch light, enjoying a romantic evening at home with my husband like any other. 


The kids were tickled too pieces upon hearing the news of the goat.  This morning we had Moms and Muffins at school and I ran back by the school to take J’s lunch.  I stuck a note in her sack that said I enjoyed the morning with her, and to be thinking of a good name for the goat. 



When I picked her up from school, she said his name would be “Max”…that is if Jeryn was in agreement.  He thought that sounded good, and said he would ‘fwank’ and tie Max.  When he heard the noise Max makes, he decided he would NOT flank and tie Max, at least not right now.  Just as well, Max had a tummy ache (i.e. the runs) and Matthew came by and gave him two syringes full of pepto bismol.


Which is why Max has what looks like lipstick on in these pictures.  But don’t be confused by that.  He is a male.  And now, he is wethered (proper term for castrated goat, I think).


Meanwhile Max has settled in to his new home by getting in Esther’s dog crate and standing on our back deck.  The dog and the goat have made fast friends, and Esther is enjoying the company!


Sunday, April 11, 2010

15 Steps to Success!

1) Start by gathering some farm fresh eggs.

IMG_6667 IMG_6668

2) Get some help from your great-grandmother.

IMG_6679 IMG_6672

3) After collecting enough eggs, sit on the porch and enjoy a little coke in a bottle.


4) When you get home, wash the eggs with soap and water. Place them in a large pot with cold water (to reduce cracking) and a little salt and boil.


5) Next, you will want to start with a nice, clean work area.


Or you can ignore that step altogether.

IMG_4032 IMG_4046

6) Bring the whole family in, coloring eggs should be a family affair!

IMG_4042 IMG_4045

7) Scream at your little brother for breaking all your eggs and try to push him off the counter. Act like your not mad at him long enough for a quick photo.

IMG_4048 IMG_4049


8) When you tire of the traditional egg coloring routine, call in an artist. An artist can help make the eggs into a variety of things like rabbits, flags, and cute cartoon figures.


Exhibit A:


Exhibit B:

IMG_6791 IMG_6787

9) Encourage the artist in a young-in by having them think of ideas and then turn them loose with sharpies (which wears nicely with their Easter outfit the next day).

IMG_4062 IMG_4077



10) Smile big and pack your Easter baskets. Go and celebrate our RISEN SAVIOR!


11) Put aside your “special eggs” so that no one else gets to find them in an egg hunt after church.


12) Leave one basket of eggs at the family Easter gathering.

13) Put the other basket of eggs in the back of your mom’s car and forget about it for a week. Be sure to throw stuff in on top of it throughout the week from all directions knocking the basket over so that the eggs will roll around and break in a million pieces.

14) At the end of the week, help mom unload the car! Act extremely upset to find that your eggs are broken and stinky.

15) Finally, laugh it off and take the few that are not broken and chunk them into the horse pasture as far as you can.

This concludes our 15 steps to egg coloring success! A few Easter weekend photos to follow soon.