New Years are always thought of as a time for new beginnings and resolutions. Our farm is no different. In farm life, winters are a little slower. Short days and long nights mean the goats are not being milked. Gardens are covered with snow so do not need to be tended. Not warm enough yet for maple sap to be flowing. So it is a good time to reflect on the year past and make plans for the coming year. Here at the farm, 2017 is going to be a year of significant changes. After 5 years of raising dairy goats, we are calling it quits. The does are part of our family. Many a late night were spent milking them, or monitoring labor. Some of them were bottle fed. Our oldest son Jack, spent the two years we lived off farm driving out to take care of them – every day.
It is not an easy decision. But it is apparent after this long that even though they are part of our family, that commercially, they are not viable. Our old dilapidated barn and milk house was not designed with the current health code requirements in mind. And the two previous owners, both faced with foreclosure, stripped anything of value out the the place. So after five years of renovations and a significant sum of money and we still are not able to pass a licensing inspection. So we will be making changes this spring. After kidding this year (which began December 28th by the way!), we will begin dispersing the herd and we will begin preparing the farm for sheep. That way, we can focus on wool and lamb while we continue to renovate the barn and milk house (that’s right, we will be milking sheep!). So if you know anyone looking for Oberhasli goats, let us know or point them to us.
We also have some big news about our newest plans for 2017…but you’ll have to wait for the next post for that news.