I finally got my lazybum in a milking routine. I normally let the kids stay on their dam for a week, then put them up in the kidding pen at night so I can have the morning milk. But I've been a sloth and just started milking a few days ago. Seems like I'm messing around with every other thing goat-related except what we actually have the goats for:
Oh, I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to have fresh milk in the refrigerator! With the exception of grandma bringing over a half-gallon of store bought milk about a month ago, our house has been milk-free since about the first of the year. I didn't freeze nearly enough milk from last fall so our supply only lasted less than a month and even then I saved it for Rhiannon only. When a recipe called for milk I used powdered milk, or sprinkled some in my hot tea. I've tried drinking reconstituted powdered milk, but I just couldn't do it. Just the smell makes me want to yack. I've even tried adding a bit of vanilla to it, but still ended up pouring it in the chicken bucket. Probably a bad attitude to have about it, but it's not going to kill us to go through a few months without fresh milk.
Our dairy does here are Annette (Mini-Saanen), MamaGoat (Mini-Saanen) and Nettie (Saanen), although after the Udder Incident, I've decided to let Nettie dry up.
But that pint of milk pictured above wasn't from my any of my dairy gals, it was from Lily, one of the Boer gals. Boers are a meat goat. But she has such a nice, large udder that I figured I'd try getting her on the milk stand and it went really well. We lost her buckling a few days ago to hypothermia so I figured I really wasn't hurting her milk production by taking some for us because she would have been producing it for her now deceased kid. And her surviving doeling is pretty much a chunky-monkey so I'm not worried about her getting enough to eat.
I also started Penny the "supposed to be a Boer" goat on the milk stand. Since she obviously has Nubian in her, I figured she'd be a good candidate for milking. Her single doeling is favoring one side of the udder so I've been milking out the other side. Penny is kicky on the milk stand, but we're working on it. As long as she has a bowl full of grain to occupy her I can milk her without too much trouble.
Now that we're back in the milk business, I can start making yogurt and cheese again.....Yee-haw!