Going into a new year there is so many things to think about, to do, to wonder.
I always make an enormous list of plans. This is particularly important with the animals since sometimes the immediate demands of LIVING makes it necessary to coast with the critters. This means I need to know what and when something needs to get done, so during those busy weeks I don't have to think about it, just do it. Or better yet, plan it for a time that is not so busy so the animals need minimal attention.
We can plan all we want, but it will always get tossed around, stretched, erased, re-written, remolded. This doesn't mean we shouldn't plan. Just have a good plan with lots of flexibility, right? God's got a much better plan for all parts of our lives, one that we can't even imagine. It's to wonderful, even if we don't see, at the moment, how.
Having said all that, here are the plans for Drowsy Waters Farm 2009.
Toggenburg Project- My four Toggenburg does have been a learning experience. I have enjoyed experiencing a new breed, there wonderful milk production, and interesting personalities. In April/May I've decided to sell out of Toggs. I do not want to put in the money for another buck's housing and keep for the amount of does I have room or desire to own. Their milk production is amazing, but it's either them or Nubians, and I'm going Nubians.
By the end of April all my bottle babies should be weaned and I won't need the extra milk any more.
Brie is due in early May so I'll be hoping to sell her in March or April to kid at her new home, otherwise she'll just freshen again here.
Nubian Project- I currently only have two 100% does, but they are amazing. Penny (see previous post) and Virginia are going to be the matriarchs of the new generation of Nubians in our barn. With the stress of early 08 I was crushed to have to sell Jo, Lizzy, and Susan, but know see how it worked out.
Mannasah has been an wonderful buck and I'm sure he's going to give some excellent producing does. I wish I could have kept a kid from him last year, but life was just to crazy.
I hope to get a purebred buck this year, either from Lakeshore, Kasterdums, or RR Resources. Due to the expansion of the Boer project this might not be possible and I'm also leaving the idea of keeping a young doe for next year for the same reason.
Grade/Experimental Project- Mannasah has proven himself and will stay on the farm for
another year. I'd like to get a doe out of him and Virginia before he moves on. Ella is excellent! I hope to keep one of her does this year and cross it in with my Boers.
Unless I get a purebred Nubian buck, I'll be breeding Ella with a Boer next year as well. Her amazing milk production (3 gallon plus a day!) and consistently large baby quantity should be an ideal trait to keep in my Boers. If I have bottle babies near her delivery this month I'm hoping to switch to Boer babies on her. We'll see.
Boer Project- We have no Drowsy Waters Boer kids being born this year, but are hoping to get some bottle baby Boers to expand. I currently have 3 nice does that will be ready to breed for 2010 kiddings, but would like to get at least one more and 2-4 market wethers. The big goal is to get a nice buck that will improve our herd. (Thank you to Goat Palace, our Neighbours, and Copper Creek Boers for your help so fare!)
We have fallen in love with Boers personality and breed attributes. We hope to build a herd that is strong in meat production and with better milking ability to raise their own kids fast and fat.
Our goats have been wonderful. Today, January 6th, makes 10 years since we purchased our first two goats, a pregnant Nubian and American Oberhasli doe. Ella goes back to both of those lines. We have learned so much! As great as they are, we won't to make sure they stay under control (it's easy for a goat herd to grow to large) so we can keep up with all their needs and everything else that keeps life busy.
We will have several bottle babies and adults available this year.
We have two lambing seasons this year, January and May and can hardly wait to see what this year brings. We do plan on keeping up to four more ewes (depending on what our girls give us) and two market lambs. The rest will be looking for new homes.
We do hope to go through the process of getting out entire flock registered and to (hopefully!) show at the State fair with my sister (C.K. Katadins).
I am saving for a new ram from KRK Katadins and have appreciated Karon's help and advice. It's been fun to connect with some other Katahdin breeders after raising them for 10 years!
With (Lord willing) our new ram, and Mr. Riah from Conser Katahdins we should be able to have some new stock to mix with Louis amazing children.
We are still enjoying raising our Hollands. I'm hoping to purchase a new trio in the summer, but until then we have some planed breedings with the rabbits we currently own. I have been blessed with two very promising Jrs. this year that are keepers. Chili Pepper, is doing an excellent job as our main buck and we've got some great babies. Can hardly wait for the next generation!
Henry and I are taking a break from agility along with our training instructor for January. We hope to begin again soon. Meanwhile we are working at home with the construction of jumps and are beginning some Rally training. (Thank you Grandy for the Home Depot gift certificate!) Henry is a perfect dog. I can't imagine anything better. He is truly rewarding to train. Now if I could only get everything down, I'm sure he'd do wonderful. A very HUGE thank you to Barbara Stone for helping with all the progress we've made this year. You are the best training instructor!
So, that's the plan. :)
Thanks for reading,