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I can still remember bringing our first goats home...a lovely group of 2 does, a buck and wether. Nigerian dwarf dairy goats,bought locally from two different farms in Arkansas. They were found the old fashioned way...by asking others and internet search..long before I was on Facebook..
The months of prep work that went into bringing them to our place was really something...you’d had thought we were buying a huge herd with huge intentions! We were chicken farmers, we raised beautiful birds and sold free-range eggs. I had over 100 layers at one time. Gardens and bees too. I also worked full time... full time at a job I despised very much…..but full-time jobs become who you are…and leaving isn’t easy or quick..it wasn’t for us at all...So ...This is where OUR STORY starts ....A leap of Faith…..Everything in his Time and Everything has a Season and Everything has a Purpose ...As the changes came together to allow me to come home full time..several things took place...making financial arrangements in preparation for me to leave were challenging. We built a small barn, and put up goat proof fencing..now that is another story…
Being home full time was not an easy adjustment at all…(2016)...When you're used to being on the run 50 plus hours a week, in a very high stress, fast-paced environment, that is loud and full of people...The quiet weekends I used to cherish became all the time..the time home became all...My house and farm felt so big suddenly...I saw things I never noticed before ...I remember not knowing what to do...I didn't have to go anywhere...I don’t have a schedule...or a lunch, papers to get ready for work...I heard phones ringing, the chatter for weeks...we were also about to live with one paycheck ...But I was home...with my birds, cats, dogs.
Our first goats moved in, late August. They were a much-loved group!! We were very excited. Nigerians are BIG on cute and FUN!! I soon found my "time" filling up.
I remember sitting at my desk and reading, highlighting everything I thought was pertinent through all the pamphlets I had ordered through the extension office in Little Rock, AR. An excellent resource for farming and goats. I learned so much in those early days, based on the research they had, on dairy cattle and meat goats. The calendar of care and sales, production, feed, nutrition, and breeding information, lots of basics. Ordered many second-hand books from Amazon and the library too. I love to read!
In hopes of selling Raw Goat Milk - This was and still is the Number one goal! To find, and be able to produce for our selves and others - in our continued goal of self-suitability. Healthy living at it's best.
I was also criticized (still am) and was told I was wasting my time and money etc. for pursuing dairy goats...What are you thinking?? I could say more...but why…?
Built our first website - everyday goat milk soap .com -
Gosh, that that was SO much work! I remember spending the next year on it… as well as experimenting with soap recipes...oh my goodness...I get asked now about that..you just have to try everything..all sorts of recipes and make your own!
I gave up for a while too...I was Home after all..and Happy!
We sure loved those Nigerians. Unfortunately, they just didn’t give us the quantity of milk we wanted.....So back to the research....locally, and asking people I knew...I sat with a gal (in her dog grooming studio) who had Alpines and Boers, They were really nice, really big, tall. She told me all about milking 10 months, dry 2. For some reason, I remember that, well..I am sure it was because I had these little producers...I was impressed!!
I went back to the extension office and asked Mike - and he said the magic word...Nubian's!!
He said it was the long ears..AND he was SO right!!! These big, beautiful goats have wrapped their long ears around our hearts.
Blue Paradise Dairy - Reflects the name of a buck here, (Veteran's Blue Lightning) AND something my parents say....Your goats live in Paradise..Our beautiful Ozark valley.
Grateful For the EveryDay!
Our herd name is JSW FARMS, we are ADGA members.