Pregnancy Updates: Juji

Today Juji’s belly looks to have dropped!  This does not necessarily mean that labor is imminent, but it means that she is progressing and will kid soon!

Can you see the difference between today and last week?

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See how her sides look sort of hollowed out now?  So exciting.

In other news, my sisters and I are plotting our spring sewing projects!  Jennifer wants a classic shirt dress.  I think she has already ordered the fabric.  Skylar couldn’t quite decide, so she borrowed a handful of patterns to ponder over.  I recently ordered some maternity patterns, but I can’t remember where I put them, so that will have to take the back seat for now. 

Have a lovely day!

Bessie

Snow

What?  Snow in Georgia?  Is this for real?

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Juji is the only smart one in the bunch.  She is all snuggled up inside her cozy house while the other animals (and humans, ahem) are gallivanting around in the snow.

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Evelyn and her daddy–aren’t they cute?

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Hana, the snow goat.

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Me and my girl.

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Darling.  Just darling.

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She was looking at the snowflakes in my hand.

I think Evelyn enjoyed the snow, although after about fifteen minutes she was definitely ready to come inside and take a nice cozy nap.

And now I am going to go and bake a nice cozy apple cobbler.

Happy snow!

Bessie

Pattern Picks!

This week’s pattern picks from The Vintage Home Sewist!

1. McCall 6895: Lovely day dress with tie neck and cool diagonal inset detail.  I love the striped version. ❤

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2. Simplicity 3471: Awesome beach-time sundress with full skirt and bolero.  This really makes me wish the cold weather would scoot!

 

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3. Simplicity 4142 S.O.: Civil War era period costume from the 50’s.  How cool is this!

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4. Mail Order 4712: Lovely sundress with sweetheart neckline and button-on cape.  OH so cute!

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Are you beginning to plan your spring wardrobe creations?  What is first on your “To Sew” list in 2014?

Off to feed the goats!

~Bessie

 

This Week’s Pattern Picks

Just wanted to share a few of my favorite new listings for this week!

1. Anne Adams 4557: So, so lovely! Love the skirt seaming detail in the front.  Kinda reminiscent of the 30’s (except that everything else about the dress screams 50’s!)

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2. Simplicity 3039: This dress is simply stunning.  No words.  Plus, the back of the pattern envelope is missing and the instructions are not in super shape, so it’s listed at a very good price! 😉

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3. Simplicity 2040:  I LOVE this one.  If I wasn’t sporting a baby belly right now this would be on my spring “To Sew” list for sure.  I’d make the fitted version with the bow.  What about you?

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4. Simplicity 7802: This is another style that I really adore–late 60’s A-lines.  Especially with the cute white collars and bows.

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What is on your spring sewing agenda?

Have a lovely week!

Bessie

Kidding: The Signs And Photos Of Them

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My first kidding season was one of the most exciting times of my life.  Anxiously awaiting the arrival of adorable, cute, fluffy baby goats–it’s heaven.  I spent hours out in the goat pen, taking pictures of doe hoo-has and udders, watching for “signs” of impending kidding.  I’m sure my neighbors thought I was crazy–my husband sure did!  So many times I thought, “This is the day!” and I’d gather all of my kidding supplies together and wait and watch, only to realize later that she was just throwing me for a loop.  There was so much to learn, and I had zero experience.

One thing that was frustrating as a first time kidder was the lack of photos to help identify kidding signs.  There are so many articles and blog posts about it, and my friends over at The Goat Spot were absolutely amazing with their advice and encouragement, but there were many times I thought I was seeing something that I simply was not.  Once I actually saw these signs with my own eyes, it was very obvious.  (Ohhhh, that’s what (fill in the blank) looks like!)

Thankfully, I took a whole lot of pictures.  Looking at them now, it is easy to see the progression of my does’ pregnancies, and what signs they were actually exhibiting.  I hope by sharing them here I am able to help my newbie friends decipher the mysteries of kidding with a little bit more pizazz than myself!

Now, a disclaimer (and you will read this EVERYHWHERE): All does are different!  Your doe might have all the kidding signs or none of them prior to kidding.  So while you are looking through these photos, just keep that in mind.  Your doe might do things a little differently.

Secondly, I am not an expert by any means.   I have been keeping goats for going on 4 years now, and this is simply what I have observed in my limited experience.  If you are more experienced and notice something that I have gotten wrong or left out, I welcome your comments/critiques! 🙂

Now, on to the goodies!

SIGNS OF KIDDING

1. Belly drops

I had a hard time telling when the bellies of my does dropped.  Even looking at these photos now it is hard to tell.  I think Buttercream’s belly dropped a little more noticeably than Irmas (maybe because Irma is so dang fluffy).

Buttercream: Two weeks prior to kidding and five days prior to kidding

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Irma: Two weeks prior to kidding and five days prior to kidding

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2. Goo (or “streaming”)

Ok, kinda gross, but see that long string of goo dripping out of Irma’s hoo-ha?  That is what we call “streaming”.  This usually happens just prior to kidding (this was taken the morning of the day she kidded–she had her baby about 9 hours later).  However, classic example of “all does are different”, Buttercream did not have any streaming at all–all of her goo came out as she kidded.

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*EDIT* A few of my friends from The Goat Spot mentioned that Irma’s streaming looks similar to what loosing the mucus plug can look like.  One of them graciously shared an awesome photo of her goat Tabitha streaming, which gives you a better idea of what the goo should look like!  Notice how much goop is coming out.  She was also in labor at this point.

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3. Looking “posty”

This is the one I had the most trouble with…until I actually saw it.   Looking “posty” means that the does hips and back legs have almost a square look about them.  The back legs are spread and straight and facing forward.  The ligaments in the back have loosened so that the kid(s) can make their way into the birth canal so everything is wider-looking than normal.  Irma did not look “posty” until the day that she kidded.  Buttercream did not really look “posty” to me prior to kidding, but it might have been that she had pretty badly out-turned legs.

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4. Udder is huge and tight

Every time Irma’s udder got a little bigger in the weeks leading up to her kidding, I would think, “Wow, her udder is huge!  I bet she’ll kid today!”  Until the day she kidded, that is.  It was another “Oh, so that’s what it looks like” moment for me. 😉

If you scroll back up to the “Belly drops” photos, you can see what a huge difference there was between Irma’s udder five days prior to kidding and the day of kidding (which is pictured here).  See how tight that udder looks?  It was very firm, chock full of milk for her baby.

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5. Laying down with back legs outstretched

This is not a normal position for a doe to take.  If your pregnant doe looks like this, she is probably about to start pushing her kid(s) out.

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6. Crazy eyes

I don’t know how common it actually is, but Buttercream sure had ’em.  I bet that’s what I looked like when I was mid-birth too.

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7. Big bubble coming out of hoo-ha

That, my friends, is a baby coming out (or, literally, the amniotic sac).  Sometimes a doe will push while standing.  Buttercream did this for a short while, and then resumed her laying-down position to deliver her little kid, Hana.

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Hopefully at this point you will be at the beginning of a safe and easy delivery.  If all goes well, you will have this!

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Sometimes the kids are positioned wrong and the mother may need help.  I pray that this is not the case for you!  However, it is always good to be prepared.  Here is an awesome website with beautiful illustrations of the different kidding positions and how to assist when you need to.

I hope that these photos are a help to those of you who have never been through kidding before!  It is such a fun and anxious time, and it is definitely nice to know what you are looking for as you wait for your doe to deliver her precious babies.

Bessie

Gingersnaps and Baby Baths

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Today I had a hankering for some gingersnaps, so Evelyn and I made some.

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She was a great help!

She got the beater sparkly clean for me.  Well, with slobber anyway.

Afterwards we took a bath in the sink, which was nice a clean thanks to the FlyLady routine that I have been using this year.  (Seriously, check it out!  It’s awesome!)

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In case this post has given you a hankering for gingersnaps too (if you are as easily suggestible as I am right now), here’s the recipe I used.  It’s good!

Have a lovely Tuesday!

Bessie

I’m not dead!

Sorry for the long absence, friends!

The fall and winter of 2013 turned out to be pretty topsy-turvy and busy for our little family, and for me especially.  For one thing, we found out that we are expecting our second child!

Baby Card 1950s #64Yes, this was planned, and YES we are SO EXCITED!  Baby is due in June, so that put me having morning sickness and feeling like I had been run over by a bus throughout the fall and holiday season.  Fun fun fun!

That said, I didn’t have much energy to do anything, especially blog or work on my pattern shop.  Although my sister and I have kept up our baby toy business and tried to do a few holiday shows.  We did pretty well, as evidenced by our mostly-empty Etsy store!  Time to work on re-stocking…

With my first pregnancy, I had grand plans of sewing all sorts of adorable maternity clothes for myself.  I didn’t end up finishing one project.  I think it partially had to do with the fact that I was due in December and most of the maternity patterns I had were summer patterns.  I didn’t get very big with the first baby, and in the summer I was pretty much just wearing my non-maternity clothes.  So yeah, that’s how it goes.

This time around, however, I really do want to add some cute vintage maternity to my wardrobe!  Perhaps a few of those big poofy 50’s maternity tops?  A mod maternity dress or two?  We shall see.

One of my resolutions for this year is to really amp up my pattern shop again.  Last year was tough, just getting adjusted to having a baby around and trying to juggle my new job as Mother with all of the things I already had going on.  Needless to say, The Vintage Home Sewist was sadly neglected in 2013.  My goal is to make 2014 an awesome year for the shop.  I have SO MANY amazing patterns, just sitting in boxes waiting to be counted, packaged and listed!  I can’t wait to share them with you.

My baby step toward this goal is to list 10 new patterns every week.  So be sure to stop into the shop each Monday and check out what new goodies I’ve added to the store!  Here’s one that I added today…

Scan 1319Oh. My. Goodness.

For those of you who are still reading and are remotely interested, another member of our little homestead is expecting as well–Irma the goat!

irmaskylarThis is Irma.  She is my favorite goatie ever.

I didn’t keep track of breeding dates (bad Bessie!), but I’m thinking she will probably kid in 2-3 weeks.  Her udder has started to fill and she is looking quite enormous.  Crossing my fingers for more than one kid from her this year, and hopefully at least one lovely little doe!

With that I will let you go.  Have a wonderful, productive week!

Bessie