They Remember!


I milked my first goat in 4 years the other night.  I was thrilled.  It had been a long dry spell and my daughter and I have been looking forward to this for a long time.  As I got set up and brought my first doe into the dairy room my dog, MJ, stood and watched.  I have always put a big emphasis on patience with my dogs so that children and grandchildren don’t get run over so I did not really think about it.  I was just enjoying the memories and getting reacquainted with the process.

But the next morning, he sat there again and looked at me like I was forgetting something.  Then I remembered…..he loved fresh milk.

From the time that he was a puppy he has gotten to drink a squirt or two straight from the udder as I was milking.  I realized that he remembered and was waiting for his drink.  I did not know that dogs would remember that long.

A couple of days later my cat showed up at milking time.  She had gotten milk from the time she was a kitten.  And had been without just as long as the rest of us.  But there she was, waiting for her squirts.


Now the routine is back in order.  I squirt the cat.  She makes a mess and the dog cleans it up.  Then I squirt the dog.  Oh yes, I have missed this life.

Then I decided to introduce Dozer to fresh milk.  He was confused at first but is now getting the hang of it, but he makes a mess like the cat so MJ gets to clean that up too.


I am now back doing what I love.  And I love my life.

About Janolyn

I am a mother of 5 wonderful children, 4 boys and 1 girl. During the years that my children were growing up, we grew most of our own food with a vegetable garden, many fruit trees and berry patches. I grew flowers for joy. We milked goats and raised our own meats and eggs. I learned to make my own cheeses, butter, canned foods, sourdough, and fermented foods. I made our own health products like soap, hand creams, lip balm, and herbal tinctures. We live off the power grid and have learned to do without conveniences that most Americans consider essential. The land clearing and building has been mostly accomplished with hand tools; some of them even the right tool for the job. After a couple of miscarriages between #2 and #3 due to “standard medical procedures”, I consulted a midwife and my last 3 children were born safely at home. That was when I was first alerted to the fact that doctors did not know everything nor would they have the time to share it with their patients if they did. As I learned the basic principles of heath-through-nutrition from my midwife, I learned alternative gardening practices from her husband. That introduction started a lifelong love of learning the practical life of our ancestors. I want to share what I have been learning with you and learn from those who are also living a sustainable life.

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