Why am I writing about counting goat blessings? Well, because I’m intentionally reminding myself that we’re blessed to have twelve Nigerian Dwarf goats. I found myself in a conversation with another goat owner recently where I mentioned “getting rid of the goats” several times. And that struck me as very odd.
We’ve worked hard to make a good home for the goats and care for them to the best of our ability, as well as establish their great milk production and conformation credentials. Usually, I’m worried about finding the best homes I can for them if any need to leave, not about “getting rid of them”. So, after that conversation, I wondered if they were no longer something we should be doing or why my perspective seemed to have changed.
I think that many days of wet, rainy, sunless Ohio weather, followed by intense cold have had something to do with it. And, it’s difficult to get away when you’re responsible for livestock. They need care every day regardless of rain, shine, cold, or your own illness. Many of our friends are currently down in sunny Florida, and it would be nice to join them, at least for a little while.
So, if you’re thinking of getting livestock, be sure to consider what you’re really committing to. Then, if you think you’ve got the constitution and stamina for it (every day, rain or shine), that’s great. We’ve had lots of potential new goat owners visit to find out how we care for them and reservations for the kids are going well, but I hope everyone is considering the consequences of goat ownership long and hard before purchasing.
After reflecting on whether I was still having “fun” with the goats, I decided that the answer was yes. I spend way too many hours in activities associated with them that I really love, so am not ready to give them up. A trip out to the barn to see them always makes me smile, and this time of year they look especially comical. The older girls are getting rounder every day (pregnant) and they puff themselves up so much in the cold – Randy says they look like cotton balls on legs.
I don’t enjoy the cold (and have to admit that I never will), but some warmer boots, gloves, and getting the cameras in the barn working well again should help. The days are actually getting longer already and joyful spring babies are just around the corner. There will come a day when we can no longer or no longer wish to care for the goats, but thankfully, that day’s not here yet! I just need to step back occasionally – remember all the reasons that I love them and count my blessings.