Book Squirt

Kidding Season – Myna Bird

This entry is part 1 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

A couple of days ago, Dad came into my room at three am. “Hey, wake up.” I had been warned the night before that he and I might be going up to Scottsburg very early to check on the goats, because we thought one of them might be having her kids.  As Dad left I shut the door behind him and got dressed. I had laid my clothes out the night before, so it was easy.

I grabbed my computer, phone and bag and headed for the bathroom. When I was done I went to sit in the living room, waiting for Dad. He didn’t come out for over three minutes, so I poked my head outside to hear if the car was running. It wasn’t, so I decided he was still in his room. I came back inside just as he walked out of his room.

“Go ahead and start the Hulk. I’ll be out in a minute.”

I grabbed my stuff and headed for the car. It was really dark out, and there wasn’t a sound. It was actually kinda creepy. Then we started driving and there were barely any cars on the road. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Scottsburg so empty!

We got to the new property and headed straight for the barn. There wasn’t anything happening, so we went up to the soaproom.

Fast forward an hour and a half. It was almost five, and we were starving. We’d been out to check on Myna Bird a couple of times, but she wasn’t doing anything. I went into the break room to check on the oatmeal – it was set for eight o’clock, as always.

I changed that to five thirty, hoping I’d be able to last that long. I normally eat an hour after waking up, and I’d already passed that point.

Once the oatmeal was ready, we ate and then started gathering supplies for kidding. We don’t have any plumbing in the new barn yet, so we had to come up with something for hot water. How were we going to get hot water for washing things in the barn?

Looking around the break room, I decided that the crock pot might work. It could keep the water warm, so we wouldn’t have to worry about cooling down. And we could also use it to heat up baby bottles. I grabbed it and set it on the table, with the scale, bottles and other things we had gathered.

Dad and I headed down to the barn. It was almost six by then, so we only had a couple more hours until the rest of the family would join us.

Myna wasn’t really doing anything, so I went into the (heated!) milk room to sit with Dad. We both sat there with our eyes closed, resting. I’d go out and check on her every once in a while, but she wasn’t doing anything.

Sometime after seven, Dad and I were both out there. I was holding her while Dad was checking her out, (I’m not going to get graphic here :D). Nothing was happening, so Dad went to wash his hands. He came back and we watched her for a bit, watching for any signs of labor.

Indigo came running out of the milk room. “Hey, birthday girl!” Dad picked her up and hugged her. “It’s time for breakfast! Mom says to come up to the soaproom.” I climbed over the pen and told Indigo Happy Birthday as we walked back.

Fast forward to the afternoon. It was about two o’clock and Mom and Dad were finally eating lunch. I was sitting with Myna, watching her, when she sat down and started pushing.

I called Dad to let them know and went to get the towels. All the kids came running in and grabbed towels too. After a couple of minutes Mom and Dad came in too and we all settled down to watch.

She wasn’t pushing. Mom asked Dad to check her out, so I held her while he did. “You’re going to make Mom and Dad think I was lying, Myna! Can you start pushing? I want to meet your babies.” She didn’t do anything except lick my hand.

Myna licking my hand

Eventually, she got serious. (I’m doing my best to not mention anything that will make anyone really queasy. :D) At 2:58, we welcomed a little goat into the world.

Drying our new baby off

I started clearing out its nose and mouth, making sure it could breath. Dad checked and said “It’s a girl!” and we started suggesting names. It had to start with an M, and because it was the first baby, the second letter had to be A.

Here’s some of the names I remember:

  • Magnolia
  • Mandarin
  • Malificent
  • Malia
  • Marcia

Mom checked again and said “Really, Jim? It’s a boy.” We all groaned and started throwing out more names. I don’t remember any of the names we suggested for him, I just remember the one I suggested. I said Marcus, and Mom actually liked it. 🙂 So it was Marcus.

A few minutes later, his sister Mermaid was born.

We brought them into the heated milk room and hung out with them while waiting for them to milk Myna.

Apparently she was hungry!

As soon as the milk was brought in we fed them.


A very happy and content Mermaid

While I was still taking care of the babies, Mom called the boys back into the stall. A couple of minutes later they came back. “We have another girl!” they yelled.

Drying our last baby off

“What’re we going to call her?” Emery asked.

“Oh, can we call her Minnie?? Please??”

“Well, I did tell the girls that we could have a Minnie if a doeling fit the requirements. I guess we can call her that. But we need to have another name for her. Min… min…”


Me feeding Minerva

“Minerva! I like that!”

I got their collars on them. This year we have different colored collars – each color tells us who their Sire was. And their name tells us who their Dam is. So by looking at the collars (which have their names written on it) we can tell their pedigree.

Look at that adorable face!


The triplets


Thor and Baxter getting their first look at a baby goat

Yesterday, I took the triplets out for a photography session. Do you know how hard it is to get pictures of baby goats looking at you? They had fun running around in the sun with the little kids, and I got a bunch of really cute pictures. 🙂






One down, twenty more to kid.


Kidding Season – Zipporah

This entry is part 2 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

Mom and Dad had gone to run a couple of errands, and they would be back in three or four hours. We had checked the goats before they left, and it didn’t look like any of them were going to have their babies. So I was in the soap room with Indigo, Jade and Hewitt, helping Indigo with one of her birthday presents.

While I was in the middle of that, I got a phone call from Emery.

“Zipporah’s going , NOW!” he exclaimed, hanging up on me. I set my phone down and ran, grabbing my sweatshirt on the way. “Colter? Zipporah’s going!” I yelled as I raced out the door.

Colter caught up with me as we got closer to the barn and we ran together. We could see Emery outside the barn, talking on the phone. He hung up as we got there and said “I think she’ll be going within an hour or so.”

I groaned. “You could’ve told me that! I ran out here in my good jeans and sneakers, and I left my phone. I’m gonna go change.”

Colter and I headed back to the soaproom, changing quickly. With first fresheners like Zipporah, you never knew what was going to happen.

When I got back to the barn, I started getting ready. I put my phone and watch by the goat notebook, grabbing a towel as I headed into the stall. Emery was in there, on the phone with Mom and Dad. “They’re on their way – they’re leaving Clarksville now.” he announced.

I looked at Zipporah, then at Colter. “She’s not going to make it that long. Can you go wash up?” He looked at me like I had two heads. “Wash up? I’m not washing up until it’s absolutely necessary.” I glared at him, then looked at the door as it slammed shut. It was Emery, and he was putting gloves on.

Thor and Baxter watching the birth

We called Mom and Dad and they talked us through it. At first we thought both of her hooves were one giant hoof – we couldn’t see them very well, so we thought it was one huge baby. But it turned out that it was the two front hooves, they were just sitting right on top of each other.

Me holding Zipporah

Mom and Dad were six miles away. “You know, I kinda want her to have this kid before they get here.” I whispered, not wanting Mom to hear me over the phone. “Yeah, same here.” Emery said. Zippy was wandering around the stall, with us following her.

Twenty seconds later, she lay down and started pushing, screaming the whole time. She’s always been our most dramatic goat, and she’s gotten good at using her vocal chords. 😀

Mom’s voice came over the phone – “What’s happening?”.

“She’s pushing, and there’s a hoof, there’s a nose, No Emery, grab that hoof! You need to help her. Pull the baby!

Mom started talking again. “Okay, Emery, are you listening? Help her. Grab the baby above the knees and pull. Okay?”

Emery managed to get his hands on the legs and pulled. I had a towel waiting, and the moment there was anything for me to grab I grabbed it. Immediately I cleared out the nose and mouth, feeling very relieved when the baby started moving. Next I cleaned off the butt and checked – it was a girl!

Drying her off

Somewhere in that period of time, they hung up the phone. We all started shouting out names, wanting to name her before Mom and Dad got there.

“Galaxy! Let’s call her Galaxy.” Everyone agreed with me. “Look, there’s Mom and Dad!”

Colter and I headed out the barn as the Hulk came up the driveway. It stopped and Mom and Dad hopped out, walking quickly to the barn. “Galaxy and Zipporah are both fine!”

Greyden taking Galaxy into the warm milk room

We milked Zipporah and fed Galaxy, put her collar on and let her loose with the other babies.

Emery feeding Galaxy

Taking a picture to tweet

Emery with the baby girl he delivered :)

It was very interesting delivering a baby without Mom and Dad there. I think we could do it again, but I’m not sure I’d want to!

With two down, there are only nineteen goats left to kid!

Kidding Season – Carina

This entry is part 3 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

I was in the soaproom checking orders. I was trying to get ahead, because I had to pee really, really badly. But if I left without getting ahead, then the “boxers” wouldn’t be able to work.

My phone rang with Emery’s ringtone, “I Just Can’t Wait To Be King”. I picked it up and answered, tucking it under my ear so I could continue working while I talked.

I couldn’t understand what he was saying. I heard the words “Carina”, and long jumble, and then “She’s pushing now!”

I hung up on him, tucking my phone in my pocket as I yelled “Carina’s going now!

People came from everywhere. Mom came from the office, the kids came from the bagging area, Dad came from his soap making room. It was pretty funny actually – moments before it had been quiet and peaceful. And then everyone was running around, grabbing rain gea, boots and sweatshirts before running out the door.

I ran to the bathroom, passing Colter and Fletcher on the way. On my way out of the soaproom a couple of minutes later, I grabbed my sweatshirt and rain jacket. It was pouring, and I didn’t want to get soaked.

As I arrived in the barn I could hear Carina whimpering. It was probably the quietest sound I had ever heard a goat in labor make. The majority of our girls are quiet most of the year, but then they get really, really loud during kidding season.

I grabbed some towels and went to stand by Carina’s butt. There was a bubble, and Dad was saying that there were two hoofs. That was good, but we also needed a nose. If there wasn’t a nose it was probably a breech presentation, which meant the back legs were coming out first instead of the head and front legs.

Dad felt around the bubble. “Okay, we’ve got two feet and nose. Now we just need Carina to push.” That was when Carina really got into it, wailing like a champ. “I know sweetie, but you can’t back out of it now! You’ve got no choice.” Mom said, holding Carina’s neck. The bubble burst and Mom said “Brett, rub off the nose.”

I couldn’t see a nose. “Where is the nose?” Dad pointed and I rubbed the towel in the area he was pointing in. I still couldn’t see a nose, since my body was blocking any light. Mom grabbed the towel from me and rubbed a completely different spot, so I still have no idea what I was rubbing. 😀

Carina pushed and Dad pulled, and two seconds later there was a black and white baby goat lying on the ground. I swooped in with a towel and Mom and I pulled the baby out of the way.

Drying the baby off

The kids started drying it off and Mom looked at the butt. “It’s a girl!” I tried to think of names for it, but I couldn’t. Normally I can think of names right away, and it was frustrating not being able to.

“How about Kalinda?” Dad suggested. “Kalinda? I like that. Kalinda.” Mom grinned at Dad before looking and saying “There’s another bubble!”

I’m not going to put some of the pictures here. I’ll post them on a different page and include a link, so if you want to see them you can see them there.

I turned my attention back to Carina, and saw this. (Don’t click unless you are okay with seeing the slightly gross side of kidding.)

There was a massive head, but once the head was out the body was really small. When it was just the head the baby looked like it would be bigger than Kalinda, but it turns out that it was much smaller.

Mom wiped off the butt and checked. “It’s a girl!”

Rubbing off the second baby

I already had a name. “How about Kendra?” Mom nodded her head. “I like Kendra. Kendra it is.”

Jade piped up from the floor where she was playing with Kalinda. “So it’s Kali and Kenya?” Emery started to correct her but Mom stopped him. “I think I like Kenya better!”

Carina came over and started to lick her babies.

Carina licking Kalinda

Carina licking Kenya

When Carina was done licking them, I got the collars on the girls and entered their names into the kidding spreadsheet.  A couple of minutes later, I went back to the soaproom. I needed to get back to checking orders, and they would be fine without me.

The sisters

An hour or two after that, when I was done with orders, I went back out with the camera. I need to get profile shots for their pages on the website. Unfortunately, it was still raining, so I couldn’t take them outside.

I tried getting some shots in the milk room, but the background looked terrible. So I brought them into the colder barn, where there was hay and other baby goats. They would have come out in a little bit anyway, and this way I could get some decent pictures.

After a while I decided enough was enough, so I headed back to the soaproom to check out the pictures. These are the ones I decided on:




With Carina done, we only have eighteen goats left to kid!

Kidding Season, Week One

This entry is part 4 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

I have been ordered to keep the log for this mission. We have been assigned a base that is twenty minutes away from our barracks, which makes for a dreadful commute each day. Thankfully our men and women do not grumble, much.

Day One

Nothing happened, which they say is to be expected. Apparently most of the animals in our care do not give birth before their due dates.

Day Two

Still no signs of new life, but the General and Colonel are not worried about it. The Colonel does not believe there will be any signs for another day or two. 

Day Three

Several of the animals under our command are starting to show signs. The Colonel is not worried about it, and says we shouldn’t see any babies for another day or two.

Day Four

The General has ordered the Captain, Second Lieutenant and Sergeant to watch the animals in our care religiously. They must be looked at every hour. The men  groan at this new order, but it is taken care of.

Day Five

The unit delivered its first babies, triplets from Myna Bird. The General and I rose early and traveled to base to take our shifts, but the animal did not see fit to give birth until later in the afternoon. We were rather upset with her, and wished we hadn’t gotten out of our warm bunks to sit with her. But as the General reminded me, we would have been sorry if she had given birth while we were not there.

Day  Six

We had a single born today, while the General and Colonel were away. The mother, Zipporah, was one of the loudest animals I have ever heard! I did not think any animal could scream that loud. During the birth, the Second Lieutenant behaved admirably, and was promoted to First Lieutenant.

Day Seven

None of the animals look like they will give birth. It is rather annoying, this waiting. I don’t know how farmers do it! The amount of sleep I have gotten is truly amazing. Approximately five to six hours per day, and that is not what my body needs. I can’t wait until this mission is over and I can start getting more sleep.




General = Dad

Colonel = Mom

Captain = Colter

Second/First Lieutenant = Emery

Sergeant = Greyden

*And I’m just covering my butt here, but this post is not meant to make fun of anyone or anything. It’s just something I thought would be fun to do. Sorry if none of it makes any sense, because I’m ridiculously overtired right now. Several days of getting up at 3AM and not getting to bed until 10 or 11 at night will do that to you. :)*

Kidding Season – Valley

This entry is part 5 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

The other day I was checking orders when someone came into the soaproom and told us that Valley was starting to push. I finished the order I was working on and ran to grab my layers. I have two sweatshirts, a hoodie, and then a fleece that I wear. It’s a good system, keeping me warm, but it takes a while to put it on.

When I got out there, Valley was having trouble. She was pushing really hard, but there was nothing coming out. Dad got ready and checked her out.

Valley licking Dad after he checked her out

“There’s a bubble, but it’s pretty far back.” Dad said, sitting down in the corner.

“That’s not good. She should have it right there. She’s been pushing too long.” Mom sounded worried.

“We’ll let her push again, and then I’ll see if there’s been any progress.” Dad closed his eyes and leaned back in his chair.

Emery letting Valley lick him

Emery and Valley

A few minutes later, Valley pushed a couple of times and then took another break. Mom called “Jim?”

Dad didn’t even move. “Is he asleep?” Mom asked, looking at me and Emery. “Dad?” Emery said, a lot louder than he should have. “Shhhh! I would have woken him up if I wanted him woken up.”

Probably about five minutes later, Dad woke up. He checked Valley and told us there was some progress.

I don’t really remember what happened after that. Sleep deprivation will do that to you. 😀

I remember when the baby came out. There’s more pictures here. We checked, and it was a girl! We started throwing out names.

Valentine, Vanessa, Vatican, and a couple of others. Eventually, we decided on Valencia.

Drying her off

We brought her into the milk room and fed her as soon as we had Valley’s colostrum. She ate quite a lot, so there were no worries there!

A still wet Valencia

We were a little worried about Valley. She looked like she had another kid in her, but there wasn’t anything when Dad checked. She wasn’t acting like she was done either, which made us wonder. But eventually we decided she was done.

Valencia’s portrait

After a week with no kids, we had hoped that there would be more than one kid born in a day. But Valencia was it for that day. 🙂

Kidding Season – Zephyr

This entry is part 6 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

“There’s a nose, and… a… hoof, there. I’m not feeling a second hoof though.”

When you arrive in the barn and hear that, it’s not the best sign. It means that the baby is going to be a lot harder to push out than it would be if it was presented normally. 

As I grabbed the camera and headed into the stall, Zephyr started licking Dad’s hand. For some reason the girls like to do that while they are in labor. But they don’t stop at licking someone’s hand – they’ll lick anything. Your head, hair, hand, crotch… they don’t care. Which really makes it awkward.  LOL

Zephyr licking Dad’s hand

Eventually she got to work. (I’ve posted some of the pictures of the actual birth here.) After a couple of minutes of hard pushing, we had a leg and nose. Dad managed to get the baby out without the other leg in the normal position, which is really hard.

As soon as the baby was out we dried off the head, making sure it could breathe. As soon as we saw it was breathing, (basically when it starts jerking around) we checked to see whether it was a boy or a girl.

It was a girl! Everyone started throwing out baby girl “Na” names.

Because we have so many goats, we have assigned each of the does a letter. It has something to do with their name, and that is how we name their babies. Zephyr is Northerly Zephyr, so her babies were “N” babies. And because this baby was the first, the letter after N had to be A. The second baby would be a “Ne” baby.

While we were throwing out names, someone suggested Natasha and all the kids agreed.

“Why Natasha?” Dad looked a little confused. “Because that’s the Black Widow’s name in The Avengers.” Colter announced.

Natasha before she was all the way clean

Everyone was watching Natasha, so I turned to congratulate Zephyr. “There’s a bubble!” I said, watching as it got bigger and bigger.

Dad felt around. “This looks like a normal presentation.”

Five minutes later, there were two legs and a nose, and then there was a baby! We caught it and moved it out of the way, clearing the gunk out of its nose. There was a second or two where I started worrying, because the baby wasn’t moving. But then it snorted and shook its head.

Greyden checked. “Um, I can’t tell. Mom, is that a boy or girl?” Mom leaned over the baby and looked. “It’s a boy.”

The baby before we toweled him off

We decided on Nero. We brought Natasha and Nero into the warm milk room, waiting on Emery to milk Zephyr.

The twins

While they were in there, we continued to dry them off. They were both really cold, so we kept rubbing them and prayed that with the warm milk inside them they would warm up quickly.

Once we had fed them, we put them in a bin and left them in the milk room for an hour or so. I came back to check on them frequently, and when they were still shivering after an hour I decided to do something about it. The milk room might have been helping, but they were still cold.

I brought them into the kid stall with the other babies. Yes, it was colder out there. But there were also other babies in there that they could snuggle with. We had just fed the older babies, so they were all taking a nap. I put Natasha and Nero with Marcus and Valencia, hoping that they would accept them.

They did! When I came back to check on them an hour later, they had stopped shivering and were staggering around the stall like normal brand new babies. 🙂



By this time, we still had 16  does to kid, with only 9 days left in kidding season!

Kidding Season – Payton

This entry is part 7 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

 The other day I was in the soaproom, checking orders. (I do it every day, so it seems like most of these posts open out like that. lol)

My phone rang. “Yeah, Emery? Is someone kidding?”

“Nope, not yet. But we think Payton’s going to go in an hour or so. Ok?”

“Ok, I’m going to finish checking orders and then I’ll be down. Call me if anything happens!”

“Ok. Bye.”

 Emery hung up and I put my phone down and started tying bags quickly. I wanted to have time to grab a banana before I headed down to the barn. I’d eaten breakfast early that morning.

 We had slept in the soaproom that night, since the weather would have made it difficult to get from Charlestown to Scottsburg to check the goats. But apparently I don’t sleep well in the soaproom, so I’d gotten up at about six and eaten.

 I finished checking and headed for the break room. I was going to grab a banana and then get into my goat clothes before heading to the barn. I pulled on my sweater, second sweater, hoodie, and then my fleece before putting my hair into a ponytail and leaving.

 When I got to the barn, Payton let out a long “Maaaaaaaaa!” as I climbed over the stall wall. She stared at me until I sat down, and then she went back to licking Emery.

Payton looking at me as I climbed over the stall

Payton licking Emery’s face

 While Payton was occupied, Dad came to check her out. Payton laid her head on Emery’s arm and pushed forwards, trying to get away. When Dad was done she sat there with Emery, her eyes slowly closing.

Emery holding Payton while Dad was checking things out

 After a while she sat down, grinding her teeth and yawning. Those are both signs of pain in goats, so we knew something was happening.

Payton yawning

 We were worried about Payton. Last year she had a very difficult birth, and we didn’t want the same thing happening this year. Dad said “If she doesn’t have a kid with a half an hour of hard pushing, we’ll give her a shot of Oxytocin. Last year one of the problems was how long it took. Lets avoid that this year.”

 Thankfully, ten minutes later we had a kid on the ground. (If you want to see pictures of the kid being born, there are a couple here.)

The baby being pulled out of the way

 We cleaned out the nose and mouth, checking the butt. “It’s a girl!”

Payton licking the baby

“How about Sandy?”

“I like that. Greyden? Take Sandy into the milk room.”

I went into the milk room with Sandy. A couple of minutes later, the boys brought in another baby. “It’s a boy! His name is Storm Seeker. And we’ve changed Sandy’s name to Sandstorm. We can still call her Sandy, but her full name is Sandstorm.”

Seeker (left) and Sandy (right)

 Over fifteen minutes later, we had gotten them almost dry. It had been a really hard birth for them, and they weren’t doing really well. They were going to be fine, but they were both really cold and really floppy. We knew that time and warm colustrom could fix both.

All of a sudden Colter burst into the room. “A third, girl, breech.”

So she had another baby! It was a girl, and had been born breech, which means that it came out with its back legs first. It’s a pain in the butt position, and sometimes the kids get stuck. There’s also a chance the kid will suffocate, if the umbilical cord breaks and their head is still inside the doe. But the baby was fine, and in a few minutes they brought her in.

“Her name is Storm Siren. Here you go!” They set her down and ran back out.

Siren (top of the picture), Sandy (middle) and Seeker (bottom) together

While I got the bottles ready, I thanked God. We had been really worried about Payton, but everything had gone just fine. It was probably a little scary out there when Siren was breech, but she was fine.

Me feeding Sandy

Emery trying to feed Seeker

They didn’t eat much, so we decided to come back out in an hour or so and feed them again. It had been a rough birth, and once they had taken a little nap they’d feel better.

Sandy taking a nap in the warm milk room

The three of them snuggling

Sandy yawning


They’re doing just fine now, running around with the other babies. Here they are after they perked up a bit:






With Payton done, we had 15 does left to kid, with 8 days left in kidding season. Things were going to get busy!

Kidding Season – Zaphire

This entry is part 8 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

I was in the office, working on putting Payton’s kids on the website. I had music playing, but I had headphones on because Dad was taking a nap. In the pause between songs, I could hear the goats and dogs.

Dad had set up a webcam in the stall, and he had the program open on his computer. Occasionally I’d go watch the girls for a minute, but none of them seemed to be doing anything. There were a couple that we thought might go, so we had brought them all into the stall with the webcam.

I was in the middle of uploading pictures when my playlist ended. I was getting ready to turn another one on when I heard a new sound coming from the webcam.

There was a goat screaming, the kind of noise they make when they’re in labor. I ran over to Dad’s computer, looking at the goats in the stall, but it wasn’t any of them.

I grabbed my goat sweatshirt and ran to the barn as fast as I could. As I entered the barn I heard the yelling one more time, and then it stopped. I looked at the goats in the pen, but I didn’t see anything. I groaned – it must have been Zipporah, our drama queen.

While I was out there I decided to check the ones that we thought were kidding soon. There wasn’t anything happening, so I turned around and started to go back  to the soaproom.

As I was walking past the other stalls, I happened to peek in and see Zaphire. But I didn’t just see Zaphire – I saw the legs that were sticking two inches out of her butt!

I called Mom, grabbing towels as I went into the stall. “Zaphire’s got hooves!” I hung up when Mom said “On my way!” and went into the stall.

Colter came into the barn and I yelled “Zaphire’s kidding!” as he walked towards the stall. He helped me get all of the goats out, pushing the last one out just as Mom got there.

Everything that happened next happened so fast, I barely remember what happened. I remember that there was a baby, who turned out to be a boy.

Zaphire’s letter was Q – she was Queen Zaphire. So we needed a “Qa” name… or “Qua”. We came up with Quadrant.

I ran back to the soaproom to grab the camera. When I got back to the barn, I took a couple of pictures of Quadrant and fed him. The whole thing didn’t even take an hour! When I was done I headed back to the soaproom, with another baby to add to the website. 🙂

Kidding Season – Zuzu

This entry is part 9 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

It was almost nine at night, but I asked Mom if I could watch a movie anyway. I knew that Zuzu was going to have her kids soon, and I’d rather be awake and dressed when that happens. We were still at the soaproom  (it was the fourth night we had spent there).

She gave me permission, so I sat down with a laptop and Grandma’s netflix account to watch Mirror Mirror. I had just reached the credits when my phone rang.

“Hey Dad, what’s up?”

“Zuzu will be kidding soon. C’mon down here.”

“Ok. I’ll be there in a bit.”

I hung up and headed for the break room. I grabbed a handful of cashews and took a drink, preparing to be down in the barn for an hour or two. My phone vibrated and I checked it – I had a text from Colter.

“Zuzu is going soon. Got a nose.”

I ran as fast as I could to get my sweatshirts and ran down to the barn. She was kidding, and I wanted to be there! I arrived in the barn and found Zuzu, who was standing up in the stall moaning. She was not lying on the ground pushing, and there wasn’t a baby there.

I groaned and leaned against the wall, catching my breath.

My running wasn’t in vain though. A few minutes later she started pushing, and then we had a baby! There’s some pictures of that birth here.

We checked and it was a boy. We had to come up with a “Za” boy name. After about two minutes, we came up with Zamboni.

A couple of minutes later, there was another baby, this time a girl. After much discussion, we decided on the name Zeyda.

Zuzu licking Zeyda off


Cleaning Zeyda off


Greyden took Zeyda into the milk room, while the rest of us waited. Dad had felt another kid, so we knew there was another one coming. Dad told Mom “If the kid isn’t out in ten minutes, I’m going in.”

Thankfully, it didn’t come to that.  About five minutes later, we had a third baby, another girl, lying on the ground getting dried off.  When we finally agreed on a name, it was Zinnia.

When we brought her into the milk room, the other two were standing up and yelling at us. They were all hungry!  Colter got his pail and went out to milk Zuzu.

It was midnight, and we still had to feed babies. I was so tired – I wanted to go to bed! But the babies were more important. So we fed them. And at 12:30 I finally went to bed. But I wouldn’t get to sleep long – there were more babies the next morning!

The triplets






We weren’t even half way yet, and we were all getting really exhausted. The goats had to get a move on, if they expected any of us to be able to do anything at the end of Kidding Season!

Sleeping In The Soaproom

This entry is part 10 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

For the past week, we’ve been sleeping at the soaproom. It started last Tuesday when there was going to be a bad storm, and the webcam we had set up wasn’t going to work at home because there wouldn’t be internet. So we went home that afternoon and gathered things like pajamas, blankets, pillows, and clothes for the next day.

The first night I slept out in the shipping area, by all of my stuff. But the second night I moved into the office, and I’ve been there since. The little girls, Mom, Dad, Fletcher and Hewitt all sleep in the media room, and Colter, Emery and Greyden sleep out in the milk room.

I sleep on the seat we took out of the Hulk. It’s not too bad, and I’ve learned how to sleep so I avoid the lumps.

My bed in the shipping area

Everyone who sleeps in the media room has piles of blankets they sleep on/under.

The kids in the media room

Hewitt’s bed

Indigo and Jade’s bed

The boys in the milk room have changed the way they sleep. For the first couple of nights Emery and Greyden slept on these lounges we have, and Colter slept on some feed sacks.

Emery’s first bed

Greyden’s bed

Colter’s first bed

But the goats needed the oats he was sleeping on, so he was slowly replacing his bed with the puppy food, which isn’t nearly as comfortable. Then Dad bought feed, and everything changed.

Colter built himself this bed that’s almost the size of a queen bed, made out of two rows of oats. Emery mimicked him, but his is only one row. And Greyden still has his lounge.

Sleeping in the soaproom has been a very interesting experience. Occasionally some of us will go home and get more things, and if we have time we’ll shower. We’ll bring home the barn towels that we’ve used for baby goats and wash them. If we’re lucky, we’ll even get to wash our goat clothes! But that doesn’t happen very often – I’ve only washed my goat clothes twice since I started wearing them. It’s a good thing they’re only goat clothes! 😀

I love baby goats, but I will be very glad when kidding season is over. Because I’m ready to start sleeping in my own bed again. 😀

Kidding Season – Charm and Thalia

This entry is part 11 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

I hadn’t gotten to sleep until 12:30 the night before, because of Zuzu, so I was not happy to wake up at 7:30 the next morning. But Dad was talking on the phone, and that woke me up.

I couldn’t hear what he was saying, but I heard him get out of bed and saw him gesturing to Mom. They were in the media room and I was in the office, so when Dad passed me on his way out I said “Dad?”

He nodded at me and I got off of the seats I’d been sleeping on. I pulled my jeans on and threw on my sweatshirt, heading for the bathroom. On my way to the door I made a detour back into the office to grab the camera. I didn’t know what stage this birth was at, but I knew I wanted to have the camera!

Mom and I walked down to the barn together. I wanted to run on ahead, but since she was talking to me it would have been impolite. We got into the milk processing room and heard a baby crying. Well, that was a bummer. I’d missed that one!

I opened the milk room door and stared in shock. Not one, but three babies were standing on towels. Two browns and a Sundgau, which is black with certain white patterns. It’s one of our favorite colorings, and we hadn’t had any born that year!

Greyden picked up the Sundgau. “This is Thalia’s baby, and the other two are Charm’s. We weren’t there for the birth, but Colter thinks the bigger one is the older one. “

So we had Ca, Ce, and Ta.

“Are they boys or girls?”

“All three of them are girls.”

Mom came into the milk room. “We need to name these babies. What letters do we have?” I pointed at each baby as I said their letters. “There’s Ca, Ce, and Ta. What do you think about Celeste for Ce?”

Mom said “That sounds ok.”

Eventually we decided on names for them all. Cabernet, Celeste, and Tangled. 🙂



Celeste (left) and Cabernet (right)

Cabernet (left) and Celeste (right)

Celeste (front) and Cabernet (back)


With Charm and Thalia done, we were almost half way through kidding season!

Kidding Season, Week Two

This entry is part 12 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

Click here to read the first week’s log.

Day Eight

We had twin girls born today, the goat named Carina preforming admirably. No problems with the birth.

Day Nine

Nothing happened today. This is rather boring. I’m sure headquarters wants a more detailed log, but there really isn’t anything to write about.

Day Ten

Today was the same as yesterday. We send someone out to check on the animals every hour or so, but no one looks like they will actually get to work. Animals are a pain.

Day Eleven

Why would they do anything today? It’s not like we have anything else that we should be doing – we are free to take as long as we want on this assignment. This is ridiculous.

Day Twelve

There are three goats that look as if they could go. Knowing these stubborn animals, they won’t.

I do have to admit, the offspring are a joy to be with. They’re messy creatures, but they are also adorable and funny.

Day Thirteen

I’ve given up. We’re never going to be done with this assignment. I’ve gotten up early every day this week, and not a single thing has happened.

Day Fourteen

Hallelujah! The Colonel says we should see something happen tomorrow. I hope that she’s right. If she’s not, I’m going to be extremely unhappy.




Colonel = Mom


*And I’m just covering my butt here, but this post is not meant to make fun of anyone or anything. It’s just something I thought would be fun to do. Sorry if none of it makes any sense, because I’m ridiculously overtired right now. Several days of getting up at 3AM and not getting to bed until 10 or 11 at night will do that to you. :)*

Kidding Season – HummingBird

This entry is part 13 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

Mom, Emery, Fletcher, Greyden and I were at the house, washing barn towels and catching chickens. We let our chickens roam the property at home, but we wanted to bring them (and their coop) up to the new place. So Mom and I were showering while the boys caught the chickens and the laundry was going, and as soon as they were done they were going to come shower so we could get back to Scottsburg.

Mom, Fletcher and I had showered, the barn towels were clean, and we had just put the goat clothes in the dryer when we got the call.

“Hummer is going to kid soon. If you don’t want to miss it, get up here.”

Mom asked me if we wanted to get up there. “Of course! Why wouldn’t we?”

“Okay. Get your brothers and lets go. Make sure they have the chickens, and we’re going to need the towels.”

I ran outside to find the boys. “EMERY? GREYDEN! LETS GO! HUMMER’S KIDDING!”

They didn’t answer. I ran through the house to the back porch and repeated it.

“What? We’re leaving? But I didn’t get to shower!” Emery sounded upset.

“Sorry, but too bad. Hummer’s kidding – we need to get back now. Get the chickens loaded and grab the towels in the laundry room.”

I ran into the laundry room with a box that I’d found on the back porch. I needed my goat clothes, and they were all still in the dryer. I could hang them up in the soaproom – there was no way I was leaving them.

As soon as I had everything, I ran to the car. Everyone got in and we headed down the road.

We got onto the interstate and almost immediately got stuck behind two eighteen-wheelers. Mom groaned. “Go ahead, take your time. It’s not like I’m trying to get to a birth or anything.”

We got up to Scottsburg, bypassing the soaproom and heading straight for the barn. Colter came out to meet us.

“You’ve got time – she probable won’t go for another ten minutes or so.”

I glared at him. “You mean we did all that, and she’s not even going?!? I could have let my laundry dry! I’m freezing right now, and all my clothes are still wet. Which is not going to help!” I headed into the barn. I needed a clean towel to wrap around my shoulders.

So I was standing there with a towel around my shoulders, freezing my butt off. Dad looked at me and said “Why do you have a towel? Where’s your sweatshirts?”

“They’re all still wet. They would just make me even colder.”

“You do know we have a hair dryer back in the soaproom, right? You could help them dry with that. And don’t worry about Hummer – you’ve got at least ten minutes. “

I headed to the soaproom with my box of wet clothes. When I got there, I found my fleece, which was mostly dry. I laid everything else out to dry, grabbed the camera, and headed back out. Dad had said that I had ten minutes, but I didn’t want to take a chance.

When I arrived in the barn, I sat with Jade until Hummer started pushing.

Me and Jade waiting for the birth

Then I gave the camera to Hewitt and helped hold Hummer.

Holding Hummer while Dad checks her out

A couple of minutes later, we had our first baby.

Me holding Hummer

“It’s a girl!”

After much discussion, we decided on Hazelnut. We let her stay in the stall for a while, letting Hummer lick her.

Hummer licking Hazelnut

When Hummer started pushing again, we took Hazel into the milk room. A couple of minutes later, they brought in another baby. “It’s a boy, and his name is Hercules!” they announced.

Hazelnut and Hercules



Maybe twenty minutes after that, they brought the last baby in. “This is Hibiscus!” Emery said, setting her down before going to get molasses water for Hummer.

Greyden got out the iodine and sprayed the umbilical cords. The iodine is supposed to protect them from infection.

Spraying Iodine on their umbilical cords to stop infection

When I was done feeding Hazel, I went back up to the soaproom. While my fleece was drier than my other sweatshirts, it was still damp, and it was cold in the barn!

The next day I went out to get profile pictures of each of them.






With Humming Bird done, we were half way through kidding season!

Kidding Season – Fashion

This entry is part 14 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

I was called down to the barn one afternoon, by a little sibling who ran past and yelled “Fashion’s in labor!”

Grabbing the camera I ran out the door. I had no idea how far along she was, but I didn’t want to miss the birth! I got down to the barn and turned the camera on, taking a picture of Fashion. Except… the picture wouldn’t take. I glanced at the display and saw “No SD card inserted”.

I groaned and ran back up to the soaproom to get the SD card. When I take the SD card out of the camera, I leave it open so I know that there’s no SD card inside. But someone had closed the flap, so I had left the soaproom thinking that it was ready to go.

When I got back, Fashion had just started pushing.

Greyden getting ready to catch the baby

She seemed to be progressing quickly, and in no time there was a baby!

I was standing there taking pictures, and from my side the baby looked like a normal cou blanc – a baby with white or gray front, and a black back. But Emery and Mom were on the other side drying her off, and Emery was very excited.

Everyone watching what was going on

“Oh my gosh, look at that! That is so pretty! Please be a girl, oh please be a girl! That is so gorgeous! I love it! Can we keep it if it’s a girl, Mom, please? Look at that!”

I’m sitting on my heels wondering what on earth he’s talking about. Then she turned around and I saw the big white splash on her side.

Fashion licking the baby

“It’s a girl!”


We all looked at Dad and grinned. Fabulous it was!

I love the look on Greyden’s face here. I have no idea what he’s laughing at, but it must have been pretty funny!

Fashion licking Fabulous

Since there aren’t any pictures of the next kid’s birth, I’m guessing I went into the milk room with Fab. So they would have brought the next kid in, dropping it on the towel and telling us that it was a boy without a name.

Eventually we decided to call him Festive, but if you ask Hewitt, he’s Festus. 😀

The twins

When I went out the next day to get their profile pictures for the website, I made sure to highlight Fabulous’s white spot. It’s so unusual, and I think it’s pretty cute!





We were over half way done, and finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Kidding Season – Vera

This entry is part 15 of 21 in the series Kidding Season

Emery called me. “Brett, I think Vera’s going into labor. Are you coming?”

“I’m really not feeling well – I feel like I’m about to puke. So, no.”

“Okay. Come down if you feel better.”

A half an hour later, Mom got called. “Mom, Vera’s going. C’mon!”

Mom called me over. “Brett, Vera’s kidding. Grab the camera!”

Okay, so I didn’t have a choice. I grabbed the camera and headed for the barn, checking for the SD card as I walked out the door.

“Maaaaaaaaaaaa!” I was greeted with the sounds of a goat in pain. Yeah, she was definitely in labor.

A couple of minutes later, we had a baby. There weren’t any complications, everything went exactly like it should.

Checking to see if it’s a boy or girl

“It’s a girl!”

Vera’s letter is W – she’s Vera Wang.

Drying the baby off



“Waverly. Let’s call her Waverly.”

After a couple of minutes of that Mom sighed. “We can’t come up with anything better than Wanderer or Waverly? Okay then. Waverly it is.”

Dad checked, and there weren’t any more kids. Since I still wasn’t feeling well, I went back up to the soaproom. The next day I went out to take her profile picture. None of the other babies were cooperating – Colter and Emery had to help me lock them all in the stall so I could get decent pictures. 😀


We were just over half way there, and we were all exhausted. I was starting to wonder if we were going to make it without breaking down.