Springtime means kids (as in baby goats), so I like to visit a farm or two to cuddle them and watch them prance around. A couple weekends ago, Mr. Cheesemonger, a friend, and I made the pilgrimage out to Redwood Hill Farm, who hosts an annual open farm tour event, to do just that. Lucky for us, there was more than just kids. Owner Jennifer Bice was there to oversee the event and talk to folks. Her many siblings were also there to show us how they have embraced the goat life as well. Some of them, like David and Scott, work on the farm. They were running around snapping photos and doing milking demonstrations. Sister Shelley Mills did goat milk soap-making demonstrations to show off her skills and promote her new handmade soap business, Blooming Goat. Sister Judy Stroup, who owns an angora goat farm with her husband, Ferncrest Farm, demonstrated spinning goat hair into yarn. She had some knitted samples of her goats’ soft-as-cloud mohair as well. It was great seeing how each sibling has maintained a connection with goats and farming in his or her unique way. The soft strains of a local folk band accompanied us on this goat-filled adventure.
Of course, there was plenty of cheese to keep our bellies happy. We could sample just about all of Redwood Hill’s offerings, from their goat milk feta to their delectable goat milk kefirs and yogurts. We settled on a California Crottin and ripe Camelia to accompany the salad, cured meat, and bread we had brought from home.
And the animals! My friend had never been around goats, and she was shocked and delighted by the kids’ constant activity. They bucked from wood stumps, climbed onto the picnic table in their play area, nibbled on clothes, fingers, hair, and whatever they could get their teeth on, and just plain played with everyone and everything around them. If you’re feeling down, just watch a kid play for 10 minutes. You won’t be disappointed. We certainly weren’t!
Thanks, Redwood Hill Farm, for hosting another successful farm open tour event! We are looking forward to our next visit. You can find more information about Open Farm Tours and other events on Redwood Hill Farm’s website.