Friday, February 20, 2015


What a proud and happy Momma.
Abigail came through labor and took to her
kids this year without a hitch. 
I was nervous and worried that Abigail would have difficulty kidding this year. Not with the actual kidding itself mind you (like her mother, Ellie, Abby is a tank). Big, beautiful, and sassy, she does not have a demur bone in her body. I was worried that like last year, she would reject her kid. We were prepared for that contingency, but hoped, hoped, hoped that those measures would be unnecessary. They were.

Abby displayed all the tell-tale signs of kidding and Sean was right, she didn't last the night in labor. Sean checked the barn before going to pick up Caitlin from work in Belfast. No changes, but I stayed home just in case. Early in the day, we checked our kidding bag to make sure we were prepared. Sean was gone about an hour and returned home to find a very, very newly delivered kid. Abigail was still very much in labor. We helped dry off both kids. With her immense size, I thought for sure she had triplets in there, but I was wrong. Abigail birthed two healthy, beautiful kids. We are all very happy and relieved!

Abigail's first kid is a buckling whom we named Levi. He has his sire's coloring and ears and holds the promise to grow as large as Jedi, too. Levi weighed in at a whopping 8 1/2 pounds! Our biggest kid yet. Levi already has small, noticeable horn buds formed. We'll not disbud; Levi should grow an impressive and useful set of horns. Already he is showing his character. He is curious about everything, nibbling on anything that might offer the hope of being food. He also enjoys having his head rubbed. I love his adorable chocolate polka dot spots along his back and legs.

Abigail's second kid was born very fast, a little doeling we named Sarah. She is a keeper. Adorned in a pure black, long curly coat and true "cauliflower" Lamancha ears, she is the spitting image of what her grandmother, Ellie, must have looked like when she was born. Sarah weighed about 6 pounds. She is healthy and alert, but so far, she is content to sit quietly between nursing. Where Levi hops and bounces already, Sarah treads at a slower pace. I am absolutely thrilled about Sarah's birth and we will be keeping her to add to our line of Lamanchas.

One kidding down and I can only hope that the others go this textbook smooth. They should not be due to kid until next month, but we'll be watching them closely all the same. Besides the obvious excitement over having kids to snuggle and love on, we'll have fresh milk and cheese available for our family in a couple weeks. Added to the increase of eggs from the chickens, it feels like Spring might actually decide to appear after all.

So, with no more introduction, I am very pleased to share with you the first kids from Lally Broch Farm in 2015:
Instinct kicks in and the kids want to nurse... on walls, other does, front legs, my knees, basically anything they are close enough to mouth. A little help is all it takes before the kids are latched on properly and able to get the nutrition they need.
Levi was a quick study. Once he found where the milk was located, he was in business.
Sarah took a little more coaxing. She was interested and calling, but she couldn't quite
get the hang of matters at first. Sean was a great help to teaching her the ropes. 
Morning cuddle time is both fun and necessary. We do not bottle feed our babies as a rule. Snuggling, petting, and talking to the kids is an important part of bonding. We fall in love with them immediately. It takes some effort on our part to convince them to fall in love with us, too. We bring them in one at a time so that Abigail is not distressed by their absence. They visit with us in 10-15 minute increments.

Totes My Goats. ;)
The easiest way to weigh the new kids is placing them into a sack with handles and using our hanging weight measure. Because the kids feel secure, they do not fuss and wiggle, which allows us to capture an accurate weight for them.

 Cute kids can be distracting, but schooling must still happen. Sean helped Meg with her math while I took pictures.
How is Molly handling this new development? Not well. Like many children being introduced to new siblings, she is very jealous of these new furry babies that are getting love and cuddle time. The kids have been introduced to Molly. She did well with it. Though she is excited, she did not try to nip them or chase them. Mostly, she was interested in their scent. A thorough licking was next on her list. Some readers may worry about introducing the scent of a predatory animal to the kids and we are mindful of that, but keep in mind, our goats are well used to Molly and her scent. And, while I am certain that Abigail seeing Molly inside her stall would be met with the same protective reaction as when the other does get too near her new babies, the scent of Molly alone has not provoked the same reaction. Instead, when the goat kids are returned to the stall, Abigail licks them clean of the offensive odor and goes about her mothering.

All of the barn residents are interested in the new members of the herd, especially Ellie- who divided her time between hoping (begging) for extra grain over the stall wall and eyeing her grand-babies.
This is not an optical illusion. Levi is a big boy! Sarah is normal newborn kid size.

I love this picture so much. Look at those sweet faces!
Lunch time!
Levi, born of Abigail and Jedidiah. Oberhausli-Boer/Lamancha cross
Sarah looks exactly like Ellie, except we believe she'll grow horns.
Caitlin came with us to the barn when the kids were being born and she captured some footage of the event. I added some from yesterday. From wet, newly born kids to kids in sweaters, this video shows snippets of the first 24 hours of life. Enjoy...

Thank you for visiting with us, friends. It is a good day on the farm.

~Sean & Sonja ♥


  1. there anything cuter than a baby goat? :)

  2. I am soo happy Sarah was a girl. She is simply precious!!! I love that she looks like her grandmaw!!