Monday, June 22, 2009

The Homely Goat

To be perfectly frank, he is rather ugly. Even for a goat. Rod brought the three month old Ringo home for a couple for a couple of reasons.

1. As a friend for Radar, Rod's beloved (yes, beloved) little, bottle-fed, adorable Alpine goat. Goats need company. Or they can get depressed and die. That would be sad.

2. Rod wanted to see what a La Mancha goat would be like. They are a breed which originated in Oregon (like La Marion berry), have no ears to speak of and are reputed to be the most lovable and affectionate of goats.

If "lovable and affectionate" can be read as "extremely needy and the noisiest goat EVER," then yes, I would have to enthusiastically agree.

Ringo bawls for hours in his nice warm and cozy stall. His wail can travel through closed doors and windows for miles. Reader Brenda can verify this fact.

He bawled like a baby crying for his mother for days. He lost his voice and then sounded like a goose with a pneumonia . It was awful. You mothers know how you feel when you hear a baby crying like that. You want to fix it. Fix it now. Comfort the little baby.

So we did. We would go out and hold him and comfort him. This is hard because he looks like an alien goat. Well, what an alien would look like if a planet of goat-like beings invaded Earth. Because he has no ears.

Are you frightened yet? You should see him when he bolts across the yard, full goat speed, and leaps at you. That is scary, my friends. SCARY.

But I am trying hard to love him, no matter that he is strange and different looking. As my daughter pointed out, I am always for the under-dog. Or under-goat, as the case may be. If that is true, then I should be wildly in love with this little guy. No matter that he bawls like a wounded elephant, or that he has chewed my Floribunda rose bush into a pile of thorny, flowerless twigs, or poops (BIG poop, I might add) on my front porch, or chases our cars down the driveway if one of us should ever leave or that he focuses his eyes directly on us in a freakishly disturbing manner.Or even that he smells kind of goaty.

He is still a creature that we need to care for. And we will look past his odd exterior into his little goat heart and love him anyway. Because he loves us. Well, he needs us, anyway.

I hope that God looks past my frumpy, not in perfect shape exterior and loves me anyway. Basically, I am a homely goat, too. (get off your high horse, you are,too) All needy and getting into trouble. But I'll follow Ringo's example here and bawl out my needs,stare directly at Him and race as fast as I can straight Jesus.

I love, love, LOVE how God uses all His creation to point to Himself. If we'll just look, there He is, all around us. All the time. Thank you so much, Lord.

My bloggy friend, Bev, (or as I call her "Crazy Chicken Lady") is catching the farmy flu, as well. Stop by and say "Howdy" to her. Because that is how we farm folk greet each other.

Here I am lovingly comforting poor little Ringo. You can see the special bond we share.
Please pray for us.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Oh, no she didn't!


7:00am:Plain Cheerios and skim milk for breakfast.

10:00am: Cleaned stalls and helped Rod clean barn. Worked hard.

11:00: Walked dogs and puppy-goat for an easy mile or so.

12:00pm: Lunched on tuna and mustard on a thin slice of whole wheat. 10 almonds. Cheese stick. Carrots.

1:00pm: Hiked alongside an energetic and slightly mischievous 2 year old horse for more than four miles. Sweat alot.

5:00pm: Rod left to watch Lakers on TV with his Dad and Josiah. I ate tomato soup and 12 Reduced Fat Ritz crackers. (Yes, I'm counting.)

9:30pm: I woke up because I heard Rod arrive home and calling out: "Anybody want some leftover chocolate birthday cake?"

9:31pm: Moving into the kitchen and reaching for a fork before my body even knows I am out of bed. I am a Chocolate Cake Ninja.

9:33pm: Back to bed. I'm exhausted. And full. And happy.
(the second fork is Amy's, my partner in crime who also woke up like the Dawn of the Dead Cake Zombi and helped make the dessert disappear.)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Goat Science

Owning a baby goat is a science. A BOTTLE-FED baby goat.

It seems like it should be easy. It is livestock. Any farmer can do it.

But we worry about little Radar.

Is he eating enough? Is he eating too much?

Is he acting lively enough?

Is he too lethargic?

Do we need to give him another baby goat enema. (yes, you read that correctly. Just keep on reading and try to forget.That's what I'm going to do.)

Maybe your first question, when you are finished laughing, is: Why did Rod and Diane get a goat? And I'm not gonna lie. There is a small part of me that is slightly embarrassed by the fact that we own a goat. That is probably why I usually refer to him a the "puppy-goat."

I guess I have a certain type of person in mind when I think of people who own goats. I need to get over my biases. So do you.

But you bring up an excellent question. Direct and to the point. Let me pull this strand of hay out of my mouth and hitch up my overalls and give you the short answer.

Because Rod wants to raise a "packgoat."

I went along with the plan as soon as I figured out it had nothing to do with a "packrat." We already have one of those, and his initials start with ROD. Just sayin'.

A packgoat, for those of you not up on your goat science, is a goat that carries or packs your things into or out of camp. Or on a backbacking/camping trip. Gosh, it sounds like a good time.

As I don't camp without an RV or a resort nearby, I say, "Have a merry,good time, Rod and fellow goatpackers. (I wonder if this is like that time he joined the Civil War Cavalry? He and his horse, Eli went to battle a few times before Eli became terrified of the cannon blasts and Rod figured out that those Cavalry guys take their play-acting pretty seriously. Shhhh....don't tell them the War is O.V.E.R.)

Anyway, our baby goat is adorable and follows Rod everywhere he goes. I did put my foot down when Rod picked him up last night and began to put him in our bed. He thought I was asleep.. I was not.

Here is the puppy-goat having morning devotional with Papa-Goat Rod.

He seems pretty intelligent,is not noisy and does not eat too much. Check back with me in a year or two.

I am completely fascinated by watching him. He has a beautiful pattern on his Beautiful eyes that seem to be able to communicate. A funny personality.

I can't help but wonder what God was thinking about as He created goats. Seriously.

Their little cloven hooves that help them balance on slippery rocks, their bleating cry, their horns.

It does just make me praise God for his creativity and his kindness in giving us people these marvelous gifts.

But as much as there is to study about Goat Science, and there is A LOT to learn, there is an endless amount to learn about our God.

I think about all the things He has made, and how we can study them and become, you know, Goat Masters, or Doctors of Goat Science, or of any of the other kajillion things He has created and I am humbled.

Now I am adding is a Charles Spurgeon quote here because it fits, and I don't want to hear any mocking about adding him onto a goat post. Just read it and shush.

He says,

"The proper study of the Christian is the Godhead. The highest science, the loftiest speculation, the mightiest philosophy which can engage the attention of the child of God is the name, the nature, the person, the doings, the existence of the great God...There is something exceedingly improving to the mind in a contemplation of divinity. It is a subject so vast, that all our tools are lost in its immensity; so deep that our pride is drowned in its infinity. Other subjects we can comprehend and grapple with; in them we feel a kind of self-contentment, and go our way with the thought, "Behold, I am wise." But when we come to this master science, finding that our plumb-line cannot sound its depth, and that our eagle-eye cannot see its height, we turn away with the thought, I am but of yesterday, and know nothing."

Yeah. What he said.