The Frugal Goat

I love goats, but you already know that about me! What better way to spread the goat-love, than to ‘teach’ youth? While I don’t consider myself a goat expert, I’m more than happy to share my knowledge (with my daughter’s help, naturally) as a 4-H Goat Project Leader .

The goat kit/resources I HAVE used in past years was no longer ‘available’ and our MSU Macomb County Extension Office does not own a similar goat kit. The one I like/have used is this one from Ohio at a grand spanking cost of $459 !! YIKES! Well, that’s not going to happen…

So, I’m making my own… pulling together a number of resources from the web, library, my personal resources, CD’s, etc.

So, I also purchased a rigid foam poster board and sketched a dairy goat, identifying dairy goat anatomy and added a bit of color. I typed, printed and laminated the body parts and will attach velcro to the board and body part labels.

I think this will be a lot of fun and valuable resource for my goat kids.

…and at a fraction of the cost.

I’d like to sketch a skeletal structure on the back of this poster and probably an ‘overlay’ of the ruminant digestive system! Perhaps, the kids would like to actually take on that project – as part of the learning process???

Visit a local agricultural fair!

I hope you have the opportunity ~ with the remaining days of Summer ~ to visit one or more agricultural fairs in your nearby home town! Michigan has a strong, diverse agricultural heritage producing more than 200 commodities…and you can share in this proud heritage by attending the agricultural fair in your county. 

Our local Armada Fair was established in 1872 and runs August 15 – 21, 2011 ~~ a fun-filled family affair ~~ city folk…c’mon down! Exhibitors thoroughly enjoy sharing info, fun facts & personal experience about their fair projects…especially anything to do with animal husbandry!! It’s my most favorite part about fair, sharing my goat/fiber passion with the public ~ adults and kids! You wouldn’t believe how many people thought Brutus was a sheep instead of a fiber GOAT! You can find more info and a schedule of Armada Fair events at http://www.armadafair.org/ 

This year, I’ve been invited to judge the 4-H Goat Project Books. I’m enjoying ‘previewing’ the 4-H youth candidates’ project book documenting their relationship with their goat(s) during this past year! I’ll be following-up the judging process with personal (one-on-one) interviews tomorrow, Sunday. 

Cloversprouts, 4-H youth between ages 5 – 8 are awarded ‘participation’ ribbons at our fair (ie they aren’t awarded premiums). These youngsters did an outstanding job ~ more so than the older and more experienced kids! So, I made the only two Cloversprout goat project participants something special…for a prize!

A goat tag…necklace sort-of.

I tried to make them similar to their own goat kids, from the photos they included in their project books. They both own a Nubian doeling and Nubian/Boar wether. S.W.E.E.T.

I fashioned them from clay, painted them w/metallic acrylic paint, sealed them with polyurethane and added a waxed linen twine. Or, you could attach a pin-back too!

I hope this is the beginning of a lifelong love affair with lovely goats!

Good luck to all you Fair folks and project kids!