Kathleen Sanderson

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since Feb 28, 2009
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Recent posts by Kathleen Sanderson

Karen Lee Mack wrote:

Kathleen Sanderson wrote:Yeah, needing to own a bull or use AI (or rent a bull from our neighbor, which would be all black Angus around here) is another reason I've stuck with goats.  That, and they don't drink nearly as much water.  Bucks can be nasty when they are in rut, but that depends to a large extent on breed.  The seasonal breeders (Alpine breeds) are the worst; breeds like Nubians, Nigerian Dwarfs, and their crosses aren't nearly as difficult to be around.  They are still nasty, though, LOL!  One way to manage that is to buy a buck kid every summer, so it will be a few months old when you are ready to breed (I don't like having kids born in the middle of the winter, so prefer late fall/early winter breeding).  Use your buck for two or three months, and sell him.  A young buck won't be nearly as objectionable as a mature one.  You just have to keep quality in mind when you are buying your buck kids; don't settle for a buck who isn't going to improve any doe kids you decide to keep.

If I had enough land to keep several head of cattle, I'd get Dexters.  A bull is a bull is a bull, but a Dexter bull would be much, much safer to handle than a Jersey bull.  And AI is a pain, for the reasons you've mentioned.  Though once you've moved, you may find that services are more readily available than where you are now.



Both services, and cattle, should be more readily available. We would like another full Jersey for ourselves but then I plan to breed them to Dexters, lowline (not sure of the whole name) or possibly even Angus if small enough. She stands 44" at her hip. In looking at AI, I discovered that midsize Jerseys like mine are basically a by product of breeding for miniature size. We almost bought a 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Dexter but she wasn't much less expensive and, oh my, that Jersey face got us. But I think the offspring would then be good for meat or make a fine family milk cow if quantity was not an issue.

That is a great idea re the male goat. That is part of my concern. If I were going to do that, I'd hope to pick a breed that would suit me but also be popular locally.



Looking for a locally popular breed is definitely a wise thing to do.  Twice I've gotten rare breeds (maybe less rare now), once Oberhaslis (which I love) and then Kinder goats.  Kinders seem to be increasing in popularity, but you still aren't all that likely to have a Kinder breeder just down the road.  On the other hand, Nigerian Dwarfs and Nubians are pretty widely available.  I don't care much for Alpines, Toggenburgs, or Saanens (not only are the bucks stinkier in rut, but the milk can have a bit of a goaty flavor, and sometimes the does -- esp. Alpine does -- can be really mean to other does), but Alpines are fairly common, too.  Oberhaslis, though their bucks can be as bad as the other Alpine breeds, have better flavored milk and a nice temperament, plus I just think they are gorgeous.  But you aren't likely to find an Oberhasli breeder just down the road, either, unfortunately.  (The differences between Oberhaslis and Alpines are a little surprising to me, considering that initially the two types were registered together in this country, until someone realized that in Switzerland, they were separate breeds.)
2 weeks ago
Yeah, needing to own a bull or use AI (or rent a bull from our neighbor, which would be all black Angus around here) is another reason I've stuck with goats.  That, and they don't drink nearly as much water.  Bucks can be nasty when they are in rut, but that depends to a large extent on breed.  The seasonal breeders (Alpine breeds) are the worst; breeds like Nubians, Nigerian Dwarfs, and their crosses aren't nearly as difficult to be around.  They are still nasty, though, LOL!  One way to manage that is to buy a buck kid every summer, so it will be a few months old when you are ready to breed (I don't like having kids born in the middle of the winter, so prefer late fall/early winter breeding).  Use your buck for two or three months, and sell him.  A young buck won't be nearly as objectionable as a mature one.  You just have to keep quality in mind when you are buying your buck kids; don't settle for a buck who isn't going to improve any doe kids you decide to keep.

If I had enough land to keep several head of cattle, I'd get Dexters.  A bull is a bull is a bull, but a Dexter bull would be much, much safer to handle than a Jersey bull.  And AI is a pain, for the reasons you've mentioned.  Though once you've moved, you may find that services are more readily available than where you are now.
2 weeks ago
I actually really like both cows and goats (and like cows better in some ways), but we've mostly lived on small enough pieces of land that it would have been hard to feed a cow -- it's easier to keep a few goats on a couple of acres, and only have to buy hay in the winter, if at all.  The deciding factor that made me sell the Jersey heifer I raised last year was finding out how sensitive both of us are to cow dairy (I had strongly suspected for a long time, given how I felt after eating some cow dairy products; goat dairy doesn't bother me like that).  I would have loved to keep Dulcie -- she was a sweetheart, and would come put her head in my lap like a big puppy for as long as I was willing to pet her.  But if you can have cow dairy without any problems, that's definitely the way to go.  If we had more land, though, I would definitely raise cattle for meat.  

I also love using peppers (sweet or mildly hot) in the cooking, but even a tiny amount of hot pepper makes Juniper sick for several days, so that's completely out.  She's miserable when she's not feeling well, and makes everyone around her miserable, too, LOL!
2 weeks ago
I forgot to mention what we are eating.  Right now, it's mostly cheap hamburger (100% beef, though, nothing added to it).  I can get 10 lb. chubs at Walmart for $3-3.50/lb, depending on how much fat is in them, and whether the price has gone up or down. Boneless pork loin roasts have been holding steady at just under $2/lb, but last time I was in the store, they had gone up a little.  And 10 lb. bags of chicken legs fluctuate between under a dollar a pound and a little over a dollar a pound.  So I have been getting two or three of the pork roasts each month, and a bag or two of chicken legs.  We also keep some canned meat on hand (chicken, corned beef, kippered herring, tuna, and some salmon that one of my older daughters sent for Christmas).  As a treat, about once a month, we have air-fried shrimp.  That is still less expensive than most cuts of beef, so I don't feel too bad about the splurge.  For the two of us, I'm spending between $400-$500/month on food (that's not including dog food or paper goods).  It's costing right around another $200/month to feed all of the animals, and we aren't getting anything back from them right now, but when we start getting duck eggs and goat milk, that will hopefully reduce our grocery bill a bit.

I've been weaning us off of using any condiments other than salt and an occasional dash of garlic powder; the air-fried shrimp are dusted with garlic powder and parmesan cheese.  We are still drinking tea and (decaf) coffee, because winter (and while our house stays warmer than it used to, now that most of it has been insulated, it's still hard to get it really warm in the winter).  In summer, we drink unsweetened 'lemonade' and iced tea, but mostly water.

I do add a little Lite-Salt to our drinks to keep our electrolytes in balance.  If I forget to do this for more than a couple of days, I start getting charlie-horses in my feet and calves.  Mostly in my left foot and calf; the calf is partially numb because of a pinched nerve in my back, and if I'm not really careful I have frequent charlie-horses there.  But the electrolytes do help.  

Once in a while, we'll have some green beans or sauerkraut; every two or three months I'll buy us each an apple.  That's about the sum of what we are eating.
3 weeks ago

Karen Lee Mack wrote:I am still using dairy as part of my carnivore lifestyle.

Having a Jersey cow in milk is a resource I am unwilling to squander!

One day I may experiment with a no dairy month or something.
It may have me shed a few more pounds that need to go. Right now,
I think I am still doing a lot of healing at 5 months in.

My current diet is hamburger, eggs, raw dairy including butter, homemade ricotta,
some storebought cheese, kippers and incidental other seafood or steak.
And still, a little honey.



I keep trying to figure out ways to keep at least a small amount of dairy as part of our carnivore lifestyle.  Should have a goat in milk fairly soon, judging by size of belly!  This is a Nubian/Kiko/Boer doe (I tried to get three different purebred Boer does, but they all sold before I could get to them, so I ended up buying six of these crosses -- and they may work out for the best in the long run, though right now only one appears to be pregnant -- they were all supposed to be bred.  I still have my Nigerian Dwarf does, and they should kid in March, but then I will probably sell all but one of them).  I'm hoping she'll give a good amount of good quality milk, but not sure if she'll be able to manage a 10-month lactation.  

My daughter is doing increasingly well on carnivore; she's now eating meat readily (even asking for it), and functioning much better than before.  Her weight has stabilized at a good level for her, and she looks better, not so much like I need to worry every night if she'll still be alive in the morning.  For her health alone, we need to stick to this.  I still periodically succumb to the lure of carbs, and ALWAYS regret it within hours, if not minutes (pain comes back).  The cheats are becoming fewer and farther between, but I will say that kicking carb addiction is one of the hardest things I've ever done.  I've heard it compared to beating an opiates addiction, and I suspect that's correct.

We do still have small amounts of green vegetables once in a while, mostly just for a change of pace.  But it's only once or twice a month.  I'm planning a vegetable garden, but much of what I grow will be for winter feed for the animals, and for my brother and S-I-L, and to share with some friends who can't grow a garden.  It's rather amazing to me that I feel well enough to actually be planning a garden this year!  (Though my brother is doing the rototilling, thankfully.)

I have also discovered, I'm pretty certain, why -- even on carnivore -- I have so much trouble losing weight.  I'm almost certain that I have lipedema, which I'd never heard of (or at least don't remember hearing of) before a week or so ago.  I was watching one of the carnivore doctors interviewing someone, with half an eye and ear on the video while I did something else, and caught a mention of something that made me sit up and pay attention.  The lady being interviewed said that one diagnostic symptom was severe pain when you get your blood pressure taken.  I started having that a few years ago, and had been thinking that it was just because my arms are so big, although I hadn't really gained much weight since the previous doctor visit, when I didn't have that pain.  Been doing research, and I have all the symptoms.  I'll talk to my doctor at my next planned visit (not until September), but for now am pretty certain that not only I, but also my mother and probably one of my sisters, and possibly my oldest daughter, also have lipedema.  If you have trouble losing weight, it's worth looking that up.

I'm still using the Ninja pressure cooker/air fryer for most of my cooking!  I want to replace the non-stick inner pot; for one thing, it's no longer non-stick.  But other than that, it's working really well.  Compared with a pressure cooker that you use on the stove, this has the advantage of being able to set temperatures and a timer, and go off and do something else while your food cooks.  And if it overheats, it shuts itself off.  (As in, if your food boils dry.)  We could manage with a stove-top pressure cooker, but this is really handy (and, with the air fryer lid, functions as a small oven, as well as a pot).

And, I'm still contemplating how best to raise sufficient animal protein on our small property.  We have a reliable (and inexpensive) source of good hay, which means the goats continue to make good sense for us.  But we probably can't raise all of our meat needs from the goats, so I will probably see if I can find a better location for our rabbit cages (and maybe build a few more, since I have wire on hand), and get a couple of breeding pairs of meat rabbits.  I'd like to get some geese, too, but between the snapping turtle in the pond and the three little dogs on the property, I'm not sure they'd survive long.  (Two of the dogs belong to my sister-in-law, the other is my own Rat Terrier puppy.)  The livestock guardian dog only protects from outside threats, not from her little buddies, unfortunately.  (And I need to add her food needs to my calculations.....)
3 weeks ago

David the Good talks a lot about cassava (and real yams) on his YouTube videos, and in his books.  

3 weeks ago

Denise Cares wrote:Kathleen, Thank You! That's the best explanation I've ever read about how to ready potatoes for planting. I've had the slips break off the eyes many times like you say they're loosely attached. I have cut the eyes off and left them to dry but I think it will be too long to expect them to store for several months. I'll have to donate several whole potatoes to the effort and if they sprout during winter hopefully not too much to keep them from going bad or rotting before spring.



Keep them very cool (38 F) and in the dark to delay sprouting as long as possible.  Time of sprouting does vary depending on variety.

My dad and grandpa grew thirty acres potatoes for sale when I was a kid (in the Interior of Alaska), and we have always had potatoes in our gardens, all my life.  They are actually one of my favorite garden crops.
1 month ago
The term 'seed potatoes' refers to whole potatoes.  You generally cut the whole potato up, leaving a couple of eyes per piece, about 24 hours before planting (supposedly letting the cut surfaces dry helps avoid some disease problems in the ground, although some people say it doesn't really seem to make a difference).  You *can* plant just eyes, but they need to be fresh and have a substantial chunk of potato attached if possible.  People *have* planted just the long sprouts detached from the potato (similar to the process of getting slips from a sweet potato) with some success.  I haven't tried that myself, so can't vouch for it, but you'd need to spread your potatoes out if you were going to try that.  My sprouts are usually inextricably entwined.  And it's best that the potatoes not have really long sprouts on them, because the sprouts do break off easily, and it's not much use planting an eye if it's already sprouted and the sprout has broken off, so you need to handle them with care.  If one breaks off, you can try planting the sprout and see what happens.
1 month ago

Gaurī Rasp wrote:Thanks for adding to the discussion Kathleen!
Last year was so hot & dry I definitely had a problem w storage. Some sprouted quickly.
Unfortunately we live in a flood plane & I can’t dig a root cellar. Storage will be my challenge this year!



I'm trying to figure out how we are going to manage a root cellar, too.  We could dig one -- ground water won't be a problem here.  And that may possibly happen, since my brother now lives next door, and knows how to operate heavy equipment (and we can borrow or rent the necessary equipment).  But there are other ways to manage storage for root crops.  Look up clamps for root storage, or barrel 'root cellars,' as two possibilities.
1 month ago