Over the Thanksgiving weekend, John and Girl 1 worked on a project to get us ready for next spring: a goat milking stanchion. See below . . .
This little stand, hand-crafted by John, is designed for a milking goat to stand on while being milked. Her head goes through the boards at the front where (on the side you can't see in this photo) a feeder is attached so that she can munch while being held securely in place for her milking.
John has already begun work on the goat shelter and pen (photos soon). We are hoping to get 1 or 2 milking does and probably a kid, too (because they're just so dad-gum cute!) in the early spring. We're excited about all the things we can do with the milk, which will range from drinking it (obviously) and feeding it to other animals, to making products such as cheese, yogurt, butter, and soap. Since I am mostly bed-bound right now, I've made myself a part of the project by reading. I've read The Backyard Homestead, which has a great section on raising goats (and on a bazillion other amazing topics) and Milk Soapmaking, which is apparently the best book out there on the subject. Yep, lots of exciting things are happening around here!