Sep 24

Pumpkin pie tooth powder

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Now that autumn is here, warm fall flavors are everywhere… except in your toothpaste. So let’s fix that.

I’ve experimented with many toothpaste recipes for remineralizing teeth, and those are great. But here’s one that detoxifies. It’s important to detoxify the mouth; a holistic dentist once shared with me that ocular migraines can be caused by toxins produced from gum and tooth infections.

This powder uses bentonite clay, a great detoxifier. It’s negatively charged on the flat part of its composite platelets, and positively charged on the platelet edges. As the fine clay absorbs water in your mouth, it also draws up positively charged toxins including pesticides, herbicides, parasites, and even viruses. The xylitol in this tooth powder not only adds sweetness, but also kills harmful mouth bacteria including candida albicans. You’ll need:

  • 4 parts bentonite clay
  • 2 parts pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 parts xylitol powder

Shake these ingredients together in a small lidded jar. To use, wet your toothbrush and dip in the powder. Scrub the sides and tops of teeth, and if you’re already oil-pulling, use that technique once the powder has been liquified. Rinse with cool water and you’ll be amazed how clean your teeth feel! (And don’t forget to drink raw goat’s milk with all its enzymes for happy teeth.)

 

Aug 02

Farm production is up!

DSC_1010In addition to increased rabbit production, our farm now has some laying hens! We ate the last of our store-bought eggs today, and will now be eating our own farm-fresh (literally) eggs for breakfast! Maybe with a little goat’s milk and, um, kohlrabi. Good job girls!

Aug 02

Baby Angoras: the newest additions to our little farm

DSC_1008Delilah and George had another litter! We’re not sure when. But this time, Delilah didn’t make her nest outside, over a snake hole! And we won’t have to move them or touch them unless one seems to be struggling.

These babies look well-fed and healthy, and are already bigger than our last litter from a month ago. (We lost that whole litter; it was her first.) Their eyes are still closed, so they must be younger than 10 days.

Many more pictures to come! And… we may have to solicit ideas on the blog for baby bunny names!

Jul 31

How ‘Big Milk’ makes this single mom poorer

I purchased my goats from a friend who has decided not to milk next year. When she calculated everything out, she was only making $20 a month selling raw milk via goat shares. She’s frustrated and I probably would be, too, if I were milking goats to make money. But I’m not.

I keep goats primarily to feed my human kids (and myself) raw goat’s milk. It’s a whole food, and pasteurized milk is not whole. It’s a “part-food.”

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Orangejello nurses from his mom, Pumpkin, each morning when they’re reunited

While eradicating any possible bacteria, the pasteurization process kills many of the nutrients and enzymes in the milk. Foods are holistic; the nutrients they contain are symbiotic and are meant to work together. When some are missing, you end up with imbalances, and the lack of milk enzymes in store-bought, pasteurized milk (enzymes help us break down and digest foods) is responsible for milk allergies. Thankfully, nobody in my family is allergic or intolerant to milk. But I prefer the enzymes anyway, and the sweet taste of fresh goat’s milk is amazing!

We have “half-weaned” Orangejello by separating him from his mom, Pumpkin, at night. This gives us a quart of her wonderful milk each morning. When we’re done milking, she re-joins the herd and Orangejello aggressively suckles — it’s so funny to watch, as he’s just about as big as she is! (When he punches her udder to let down the milk, he sometimes lifts her off the ground.) But we don’t want to deprive him of her milk entirely; the nutrition he’s getting from it shows in his robust size and gleaming coat.

Of course, I wouldn’t mind turning my love for raw milk into a profitable business. I’m a single mom, and hay and grain for the goats is expensive, not to mention the vet bills and the trips out to Elizabeth, Colorado to see the only caprine vet for miles (the long trips account for why our goats often join us in the drive-thru). But people like me have been prevented from selling our milk by the government, or more specifically, the dairy industry lobby, aided and abetted by the government. You see, lobbyists don’t just try to influence government; lobbyists often ARE government:

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I began making venn diagrams like the one above over at GEKE.US when I realized that it wasn’t just government distorting what should be free markets… it was corporations, too. Corporations have little power to distort markets on their own, but they find ways to manipulate markets and consumers through government regulatory processes and something called “regulatory capture.” Lobbying can influence these processes, but it’s much easier if you simply get people working for your corporation on the “inside” of these powerful government agencies.

As a result, folks like me who might like to start a small business selling raw goat’s milk have been thwarted by two major dairy trade associations: the International Dairy Foods Association and the National Milk Producers Federation. I call their collective conglomeration ‘Big Milk.’ The corporations they represent really don’t like the idea of people like me competing with them for your milk business. So they’ve succeeded in instituting regulations and legislation making it much more expensive for goat owners to do business. Not to mention completely outlawing the sale of raw milk; the Code of Federal Regulations (21 CFR Sec. 1240.61) mandates that all milk for direct human consumption be pasteurized.

(Some of you may be thinking that the FDA is simply trying to keep us safe, protecting us from the nasty microbes that can sometimes be found in raw milk. But seriously, how many times do we have outbreaks of food-borne illness? It happens constantly, despite federal regulations intended to protect us from it. That is not the intent of these regulations, and it never was.)

Many people, faced with the stark reality that there’s no money to be made keeping dairy goats, pass on it… unless, like me, they really want to feed their families whole, natural foods. But it’s expensive and difficult, and I just wanted you to realize that the government (at the behest of large dairy producers) makes pursuing a healthier lifestyle much more expensive for the “little guy” or the single mom, than it has to be. Thanks for looking out for us, federal government! Keep subsidizing and protecting Big Milk, while penalizing tiny, family farms!

Jul 17

Grumpy Toad

Add to the list of animals on the Teeny Tiny Farm this non-plussed toad the boys caught in the back yard:

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We live in a veritable desert; what is a toad doing here?

(Some days I question why God gave me two boys and no girls to play Barbies with and dress up in cute outfits. This is one of those days.)

Jul 17

Cafe Le Leaf

We expanded the fence in the grass pasture so the goats could have access to an area with tree leaves, lilac leaves, and some shade. Nick named the new area Cafe Le Leaf!

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The old fence posts continued down to the gate, but the new fence goes to the right along the tree line

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Harpo is in heaven!

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Everyone is checking out the new fence

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OK, we’re full. Check please!

 

 

Jul 15

Cleaning the goat stall

It’s not easy to clean a goat stall with goats in it. Harpo and Orangejello were very interested in the rake.

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Very, very interested in the rake.

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Bonnie, Le-a, and Ezio did try to stay out of the way.

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And without the old thresh under there, Orangejello could fit under the hay feeder like he did when he was tiny!

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Jul 10

Knock. Knock. Who’s there? Rattlesnake.

Candygram.

Um, anyway… since starting the Teeny Tiny Farm last year, we’ve been plagued with constant crises. Orangejello’s birth alone set me back 2 months. We’ve had chicken crises, rabbit crises (mama rabbit made her baby nest, complete with babies, over a snake hole), fence crises, dog crises, cat crises (we thought Cream was bitten by a rattlesnake, but it was probably just a thick, pointy wire), and fire crises. Computer crises. Garden crises, even. And yes, each word crisis here is pluralized.

So today’s crisis was a rattlesnake camped out by our front door. We probably stepped over it, where it was lying under a rock at the bottom of our stairs, several times today in sandals. So glad no people were bitten. So glad no goats – or dogs, cats, chickens or rabbits – were bitten. The snake was destroyed, which both relieves and saddens me. But it had to happen; those things are killers. My sons, 18 and 10, were fascinated by the whole thing, including the cop killing it in our driveway. They kept the rattle. Farm life isn’t as cute and cuddly, or crisis-free, as I optimistically imagined last year.

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Jul 09

How to prevent goat scours: let them escape

The whole idea of goats mowing your lawn is a big misconception. I mean, they’ll eat grass if it’s there, but they will devise complicated fence breaching systems in order to consume leaves. They will stand up, assuming human form. They will wrench their necks in three directions at once. Here’s the aftermath of the day Orangejello led most of the herd under the wire fence:

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What was once a lovely bush is now a tall stick.

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It’s coming back nicely at the bottom, though. Perhaps goat pruning can be a blessing.

I’ve noticed that goats like blackberry leaves even more than the berries. And it turns out there’s a reason for this: blackberry leaves are medicinal for goats! They help with a condition called ‘scours’ which is a nice way of saying ‘goat diarrhea.’ The digestive tract of a goat is a rather sensitive monstrosity and if they eat too much grain (which they LOVE), they get scours… which can kill them if it’s severe. Orangejello’s Big Day Out was a medicinal day indeed, as I lost 4 blackberry bushes, but may have gained a scour-free herd for a few days.

(The folks over at the Goat Justice League claim that goats won’t eat blackberry branches. I am here to tell you they will. The second blackberry bush we planted no longer exists in any form. But they still like leaves better.)

Jul 05

Backseat Goat Fools the Vet

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Little Ezio nibbling on grain in the backseat while we got gas. We were on our way to the vet to check out his right rear leg, that’s caused him to limp since yesterday. Of course — he didn’t limp at all at the vet. They found nothing wrong and didn’t charge us for the visit. But he’s limping again here at home. If it doesn’t resolve next week, I guess we’ll head back. We did stop in a drive-thru on the way home for tea; he was asleep by then.

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