Help for Adah Lynn

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Support for Adah Lynn

FIVE DOLLARS. That’s all we’re asking for. Let the ripple effect do it’s work.

My friend Amy has a beautiful little 21 month old daughter who is in desperate need of dental surgery to save her teeth which are crumbling due to undetected thyroid issues Amy had while battling cancer during her pregnancy.  If everyone reading this would please give $5 right now, this little girl would have (according to my stats) about 2/5ths of what is needed to pay for this surgery. If each of you shared this on your blogs or facebook walls and if only HALF of everyone you shared with gave $5, we’d have ALL of the rest covered and then some. PLEASE… Can every person reading this give $5 right now? Can you please spare just that much for a little girl in need? And if you’re feeling especially generous, could you please post this on your walls and your blogs? $5 can make a HUGE difference in this little girls life!!! FIVE DOLLARS. That’s all we ask.

“I do not believe one can settle how much we ought to give. I am afraid the only safe rule is to give more than we can spare… If our charities do not at all pinch or hamper us, I should say they are too small…
– George Muller

To give now (and please don’t wait, lest you forget!!!)  click HERE

 

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Scotch’s birth

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Momma’s note:  Last year, during a somewhat complicated birth (Scotch again,) I was on the phone with Kathy Sullivan from Jasper Pine, the woman we got most of our goats from who has been a mentor of sorts.  As she was trying to explain what I needed to do to assist Scotch during her birth, I panicked!  I handed the phone to my oldest daughter (nicknamed “Bunchkin,” which is the only name we use on the blog) who not only has much smaller hands than I have, but is also calmer and more level-headed crisis than I am!!!  (It’s pretty awesome to watch your children grow up and come into their own strengths!  She says she’d like to be a midwife some day… when she isn’t being a violin teacher, symphony performer and photographer.  ;))  Bunchkin was able to follow Kathy’s instructions perfectly and calmly and afterwards she asked if she could be in charge of delivering the goat kids from now on.  Since then, she has been in charge of checking for dilation, and helping with complicated deliveries, a job I was all to happy to relinquish to her!  Last night, we had our most difficult delivery yet and thanks to the calmness and confidence of my two oldest daughters, everything went smoothly!  Here is the birth story, in their words:

About a week ago, Sudoku had her babies.  She was our second-to-last goat so we knew that Scotch was next to kid.  We started impatiently checking her ligaments several times a day.  The ligaments hold the goat’s hips together and when the hips have to part for the baby to go through, the ligaments will go away.  On Friday the 29th, we knew that this was going to be the day because her ligaments were very soft.  After you’ve been goat farming for a while, you just know that this is the day.  I (Bunchkin) got it right every time this year!  Then, toward the evening while Daddy was making dinner, I checked on her one last time and she had lost her ligaments completely!  I called everyone to come and check and Momma said they were still there a little bit, but thought she would definitely kid sometime that night.  We had missed Sudoku’s kidding even though we slept in the living room with the window wide open and set an alarm to check on her, we slept through the alarm and didn’t hear her through the window.  We definitely didn’t want that to happen this time!  Twice before she came to live with us, Scotch had had four kids die, so we needed to be there just in case to do all that we could to get the babies breathing.  Also, Bundle and I had been waiting all year to deliver Sudoku’s babies, and then we missed her so we knew that Scotch would be the only one Bundle and I could do together.  This was my (Bundle’s) first time delivering a baby goat and I was really, really excited.

We asked Momma if we could sleep out in the pen with her, but she didn’t feel  comfortable with that, but she did say that if we took our dog out there with us, we could sleep in the van.  :)  So me, Bitty, Bundle and our dog posted up out there in the van (daddy and the boys slept out in the living room with the window open so they could keep an ear out for us.)  We set an alarm, checked on her twice and on the third time, there was a ton of goo, and it was dripping.  All of our goats, when they’re about to kid, have very thick mucus and that’s when we know that they’re very close to giving birth.  I (Bunchkin) didn’t know what to do about it so I went and asked Momma about that.  She said it’s a tough decision, because it could still be a long time (since she wasn’t having very much contractions,) but it could be any time now because all of our other goats delivered right after they had mucus.  Momma said that if we get really tired, we could check her cervix.

So we went out there and talked it over.  After about ten minutes, nothing happened and we were getting sleepy!  So I (Bunchkin) decided to check her cervix.  What it means when I say “check her cervix” is that when a goat is going to give birth, her cervix is opened.  The cervix is the opening to the birth canal and it’s always closed until the baby is ready to be born.  Then her hips will spread apart, and the cervix will open.  You check it by putting your hand in there and then you keep pushing against her and if you can get further than your knuckles, you know it’s all the way open.  When it’s all the way open, then you can take your fingertips and feel for a kid.  If you can’t feel anything, it might still be a little while.  In this case, I felt something!

At this point, I pulled my hand out and she started pushing hard!  I sent Bitty in, because of how hard she was pushing.  Momma came rushing out but nothing happened.  After about ten minutes, Momma said she was going to go back inside with Pumpkin (our baby sister,) and to come get her if there was a kid or a bubble.  (Sometimes, the babies will be born in the amniotic sac and when they’re born in the amniotic sac, you’ll see a bubble right before the baby comes out.  It looks like a small red water balloon.)  She had two contractions, on the next one we could see a bubble so we sent Bitty running.  Before Momma got out there, the sac ruptured, which was no big deal, that’s normal.  Then Momma came out there.  Usually, the baby should come after you see a bubble, about two second later.  But she had four more contractions and nothing happened.  So Momma wanted me (Bunchkin) to check to see if the baby was twisted or upside down, etc.  So I ran in, washed my hands, checked my fingernails, and got the lubricant on.  When I put my hand in her vagina I couldn’t feel anything at first, so I kept pushing a little bit and felt a foot!  But it disappeared!  So I pushed against her a little harder and felt it again, but I could only feel one, which is not normal.  There are supposed to be two hooves underneath the baby’s head.  I kept searching a bit, but couldn’t find the second hoof.  It was kind of a battle.  I would try to feel, and the baby would back up.  Scotch would push, and it would come forward, and then it would back up again.  During all of this, I ruptured the sac, which was no big deal but it was kind of cool to feel it bust like that!  The next time Scotch pushed, I grabbed one of the baby’s feet and tried to move it to try to get to the other foot.  Now I had my hand all the way in there so the kid couldn’t go anywhere.  I started searching for the other hoof.  Nothing!  I asked Momma what she wanted me to do, and she said we’ve got to find it!!!

What happened was that it’s leg was all the way back.  (I actually didn’t know it, but it was coming out backwards.  That’s why everything kind of felt funny.)  When I found the thigh (I thought it was the shoulder,) I followed it all the way up to the hoof, told Momma that I’d found it, and she said to cup it so that it wouldn’t tear Scotch’s uterus, so I cupped it and pulled it forward.  Then I pulled my hand out and waited for the next contraction so we could get the baby.  Right after I took my hand out, there was the baby!  She was born backwards, I was actually feeling back feet the whole time!  I grabbed a towel, cleared its nose out, and Bundle dried it off.  We gave it to its momma (she was very happy) and it was a girl!!!

Then the next baby was coming!  But something was wrong.  We would see a bubble, and then it would disappear, and it would come out again, and then disappear again.  This went on for probably about five minutes, and we thought this one might be twisted, too.  So I checked her again and definitely felt a nose but no hooves!  I kept feeling around for a good little while, asked Momma what she wanted me to do, and she said that Scotch couldn’t deliver the baby if the two hooves weren’t underneath the head.  So I kept feeling around and felt a hoof, but I couldn’t pull it forward!  I wasn’t sure what to do.  By this time, Scotch was pushing HARD and the head started coming out!  WHY wasn’t this hoof coming out???  The baby was trying to breathe, so we pulled the mucus off, but the baby couldn’t breathe because it’s neck was being choked, and it was turning purple.  At this point, I just knew I had to get it out!  So I started following the head and found the shoulder and found a place where I could get a good grip of the baby and yanked it out!  It still wasn’t breathing so I started swinging it a bit.  (If you tip the baby upside down and swing it by it’s hocks, it will clear the mucus out, because it’s being swung.)  It was still choking and coughing, so I took it out of the pen where I had more room and spun it as fast as I possibly could and by the time I brought it back its heart was beating and it started to cry.

While Bunchkin and Bitty were trying to help dry the baby off and help the momma lick it off, Scotch started pushing again and I (Bundle) saw the baby’s tail and two back feet.  I thought the tail was the nose, so I thought the baby was in the right position (it was in the caul so it was hard to see.)  The baby’s feet had come out about halfway, so I grabbed it’s feet and when Scotch pushed on the next contraction, I pulled it down toward her hocks.  (if you pull a baby straight out, it can hurt the momma.)  The baby’s butt came out, I kept pulling, I pulled it completely out, I ripped open the sac and cleared its nose and then gave it to Scotch.  I (Bunchkin) did what we call “stimulating” it, which is when you rub it really hard with a towel.  I (Bundle) asked Bunchkin if I could take over and I finished drying it off and gave it to it’s momma.  Both of the last two were boys.

As we were talking it over, we realized that the last two boys were probably trying to come out at the same time and that would make sense, why I couldn’t get the hoof… because it didn’t belong to the goat we were trying to deliver!

Another interesting thing is that when Bunchkin was checking to make sure there were no more babies, she saw something brown that we’ve never seen before.  She picked it up and asked Momma what it was, and Momma said she wondered if it was a goat placenta.  Me and Bitty started looking at it and we saw that it was the head of a baby, and the spine, the rib, and one leg that had two hooves attached to it.  Me and Bitty figured out that it was a miscarriage baby.  A few months ago, we gave Scotch some herbs for worms that weren’t supposed to be used on pregnant goats, but we had to give it to her because she had really bad worms and we think this might have been a problem.  But we’re extremely thankful for three healthy kids!

The first baby might have made it, but the second and third and maybe even Scotch definitely wouldn’t have made it if we weren’t out there.  So even though it was kind of uncomfortable, it was very worth it to sleep in the van!!!  (It was very adventurous, too.)  And now we have a little girl from Scotch, which we wanted!

*Momma’s note again:  I am certain that if I’d been in charge of Scotch’s birth, things would not have gone nearly as smoothly as they did.  I’m so proud of them!!!

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Posted in Birth Stories, Farm & Garden, Homemaking, PERSONAL | Leave a comment

Increasing our Faith

In light of recent events (detailed, below) I thought this was a timely re-posting:

 

“Suppose a parcel came to us, and it should prove difficult to untie the knot, and you cannot cut it; then you should ask God to help you, even to untie the knot.”

– George Muller, Address to Young Converts

The majority of the life of a believer is made up of small circumstances and situations. Every small thing in our life presents us with another opportunity to draw closer to God, another opportunity to fellowship with Him. Each time I am faced with a new situation, or a difficult circumstance, I am presented with an opportunity for growth and a deeper relationship with God. If I have not experienced the joys of daily communication with God during the ordinary, it will become difficult to pray with faith in the day of crisis. If I have not experienced the blessings of God’s consistent answer to prayer in trivial matters, it becomes difficult to expect His answer in times of urgency.

Faith is not built so much during times of great personal struggle, but in commonplace day to day communication with Him. If we become accustomed to expecting and experiencing His help in little things, we will have laid a foundation that will give us the faith to expect and experience His help in the big things. When the bible tells us to “pray without ceasing” it doesn’t mean that we are to spend the entire day in our prayer closet, on our knees, it means that we are to take to Him each aspect of our every day lives. To live by the adage: “if it’s important to me, it’s important to God.” Bill Johnson once said: “Show me a man who prays when things are going well, and I will show you a man who knows how to handle a crisis when it comes” (paraphrase [1]). George Muller, in his address to young converts, wrote: “There is nothing too little to pray about. In the simplest things connected with our daily life and walk, we should give ourselves to prayer; and we shall have the living, loving Lord Jesus to help us. Even in the most trifling matters I give myself to prayer and often in the morning, even ere I leave my room, I have two or three answers to prayer in this way.” (2) It is not merely acceptable to ask for God’s help in finding our shoes or opening the jelly jar, it is absolutely essential. Our relationship with God will grow exponentially as we learn to take even the smallest matters to Him in prayer. Our faith will increase, our wisdom will multiply, and the Fruits of the Spirit will be further manifested in our lives.

“And truly, our partnership is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.” (1 John 1:3)

1.) Bill Johnson, in a sermon entitled “Enduring Faith”

2.) George Muller, Address to Young Converts, printed in HeartCry Missionary Society, September – October 2005, pg 29.

 

Last night, our family sat down to pray because there were some things we desperately needed by TODAY.  I’ve been feeling God has been reminding me, lately, that “you have not because you ASK not” so our family all sat down to ask God for $100 (and then Jon, being funny, asked for $104, because I need to buy a hat for a wedding shower.) 30 minutes later, a lady contacted us to buy two of our goats and she wanted to pick them up today. Between that and some photos I just sold, we have $105!

In addition to asking God for $100 by today, we asked Him for another amount by next Friday for some other things we need to take care of. Jon just got a call from work, and they need him to come in and it’s ALL overtime pay! That takes care of almost all of what we still need, and I certainly don’t have any doubts that the rest will be here by then! Two of my daughters told us last night that they have a difficult time having faith for things they ask God for. I told them they need to start asking God to help them more often, so that they could experience answer to prayer more often. God is good!

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The Fix-It Brothers

My boys are awesome!  For the past two days they’ve been weed-eating the fence line because they wanted to (and I’m so glad they did, because it’s been needing it desperately!)  When I couldn’t figure out how to work the weed-eater, they figured it out on their own!  Then today, our washing machine was leaking and they’d been asking if they could fix it, so I finally decided to let them try after explaining all the safety precautions to take.  Sure enough, they found the problem and our washer is working again!  A few weeks ago, they fixed the sink drain and before that, they fixed the toilet.  They’ve been telling me that when they get older they want to go into business together – they already have their name picked out… “The Fix-it Brothers!”  I must say, it’s awfully nice to live with the Fix-it Brothers… they don’t charge their momma for their services.

Posted in Daybook, PERSONAL, Shmooey, The Seven of 'em, Who-Be-Bee | Leave a comment

Let patience have it’s perfect work…

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I feel like the kids are all just being mean to each other, lately, and I know they’re getting it from me!  If I were on a TV show, I wouldn’t let the kids watch!

I said this to Jon just a few nights ago.  In the midst of the fifteen different kind of crazy we’ve had going on, lately, I’ve been impatient, easily frustrated, and just altogether grumpy.  And my kids, who’ve always gotten along so well, are starting to bicker and fight and complain.  Today, a friend told me that her daughter had been inspired by how “loving and patient” my children always are to each other, and I was truly humbled, because if there is anything we have not been lately, it’s loving and patient!

A long time ago, a wise older mom of many was telling me that during the first few years of her children’s lives, she’d struggled with her temper.  I couldn’t believe she’d ever struggled this way, but she assured me she had!  Often.  I asked her how she’d managed to raise such great kids despite this, and she told me that the most important thing she’d ever done was ask her kids for forgiveness whenever they saw her behaving in ungodly ways.  And so tonight I apologized to my kids, and I asked them to help me be better, and help each other be better.  I asked them to “turn me off” when they started hearing things from me that I wouldn’t allow them to watch on TV!  We all had a good laugh over that, but I meant it, too!  It’s easy to censor what you allow your kids to watch on the screen… much more difficult to censor what comes out of your own mouth.  Thankfully, I have pretty awesome kids who know the value of forgiveness.

But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead.  – Philippians 3:13

Thank God for second chances!  (And third, and fourth, and….)

Posted in Daybook, Discipline/Discipleship/Raising Godly Children, Parenting, PERSONAL, The Seven of 'em | Leave a comment

It’s a girl!!!

No no, we haven’t had another baby (I ought to be getting pregnant any time now, though.)  😉  It’s a girl kid.  Well, that doesn’t help, does it?  A baby girl GOAT.  Whew!

Mini Pearl gave birth today to three adorable babies, two bucklings and a little doe.  I’m super excited about the little doeling, as I was hoping keep a girl from Pearl this year.  Pearl is one of our best milk goats (she ranks a close second to Sudoku) and she was bred to our best buck (his lines include three ADGA top five most productive milk producers and two of them hold records for longest lactation, highest milk production.  His grandsire (Rosasharn’s Epic) brought a record price of $8,700 (no, I didn’t add an extra zero) at the 2011 ADGA National Convention Spotlight sale and is the highest selling buck in the ADGA Spotlight Sale for the past 15 years.  [To read about how we were blessed with this amazing guy, click HERE.])

If you’ll recall, out of over 10 (I can’t remember the number exactly) live births, we only had THREE doelings born last year and ALL of them were promised to others (although the family we promised two does to graciously accepted one of our bucklings, so we got to keep one of them (we’re breeding her right now!)  This year we have two promised already, so I’m going to need at least one of our other goats to give us another girl so I can keep this one, but we still have three more goats left to kid, so I’m hopeful.  :)

This is our cute little blue eyed buckling:

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A pretty cream colored buckling (he looks dark here for some reason, he’s pictured below and you can really see how light he is):

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Her registry name will be Faithful w/Little JPL Emerald and we’ll call her “Emmie.”

(If you’re interested in knowing how we name our goats, “Faithful w/Little” is our registration name, “JPL” are the initials for her sire’s name [Jasper Pine Legacy] and we try to choose names have something to do with their dam’s name [Mini Pearl] and (if we can manage it) start with the registration letter corresponding to their birth year [this year is “E” – hence, “Emerald.”]  This makes it easier to remember who is who.  For instance, I’m registering another buckling whose owner wanted to name him Honey Boy.  His dam is named Scotch and his sire is Jasper Pine Genesis, so I’ll be registering him “Faithful w/Little JPG Highland Honey Boy” (though technically his name should start with a D, as he was born in 2013, it was just too difficult to come up with something that correlated to “Scotch” AND started with D!)  If either of these bucklings get registered, he’ll be named E. Haw (Mini Pearl?  E. Haw?  Get it?)  :)

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It’s that time again!

I haven’t talked much about the farm happenings, lately, mostly because there hasn’t been anything very interesting going on (unless you count the fact that every month or so our cow decides she wants to go out on a date with me.  I’m still not completely over my fear of cows, and her attempted love affair isn’t helping.  ;))  But kidding season is now upon us, and a few days ago, we came home to find that one of our goats had given birth, and another was in labor!  Interestingly, we couldn’t at first determine who had actually given birth, as two different goats were licking and “talking” to the babies, and the kids were even nursing on them both.  In fact, the goat we eventually decided couldn’t be the mom (no signs that she’d given birth) kept trying to keep the real mom away from the kids!  We were able to get it all sorted out, though, and we now have four baby goats to love on – three boys and a girl!  None of them are good enough to participate in the Milk Enough Project, so they’ll all be sold as pets soon (including one of the mommas, as we’re focusing hard on production this year,) but in the meantime, they sure are fun to have around!!!

Here are Peppy’s kids.  Peppy was the first little goat born on our farm (the one who, if you recall, used to let herself into the house any time the door was open!)  She’ll be sold with her doeling this year, (the bucks will be sold separately) and I know she’s going to make someone a great little pet!

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And this is Spats’s little boy:

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I love kidding season!!!

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