This Week on the Ranch | Welcome Truffles!

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Posted: 04/30/2018·

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“This Week on the Ranch” is a weekly series sharing snippets and stories from life on the range. 

“This Week on the Ranch” is a weekly series sharing snippets and stories from life on the range.

This week I headed to Napa to celebrate La Tavola’s 10th birthday party with so many friends I have made in the wedding industry. Even though I have nothing to do with the wedding industry, I have made countless friends thanks to Kelly from ASE and Danielle from Elise Events. We had so much fun celebrating, and it was the perfect excuse to head to the Bay Area to pick up our newest family member. 

After Elderberry passed away I began looking for a friend for Buckwheat; while we ended up with both Alfalfa and Butternut, I also put my name down for a spring baby from a farm outside of San Jose. I recently got news that our baby was ready, and I was thrilled to add her to the family! 

After the La Tav party, I left Danielle and Carrie (friend & hotel roomie) to enjoy a sun drenched morning in Napa while I headed to San Jose to pick up our new little one, Truffles. The excitement got me through the morning traffic, and although completely unsafe, I held her in my lap the entire drive back to Napa. 

I met Danielle and Carrie in the parking lot for a quick taco from Oxbow market before heading back to Reno, and it was in that moment that we realized Truffles was covered in lice. I think I was jaded by the excitement of getting her that I did not notice at first, but it was very evident that she was crawling. If you know me personally, you know I am terrified of lice. I can handle anything ranch life throws at me, but I draw the line at lice. 

I think Danielle and I were equally as disgusted, although she at least did not have the lice crawling on her. Goat lice does not transfer to humans (luckily), but still…it’s very gross to know you’ve been cuddling a lousy animal for an hour and a half. A quick costume change, and we were back on the road, trying to forget about the lice in the back of the car. 

The next day I began the lice removal process, but I’ll write an entire post about that. I’m happy to say we are all lice free now, and snuggling is much more enjoyable. Little Truffles has settled into our home, and she and I have spent the entire week together. The last time I got a bottle baby I had both Elderberry & Buckwheat, so they had each other to play with. Since Truffles is all alone, she is very attached to me, and I feel terrible leaving her out with the big kids. 

Butternut has welcomed her the same way she was welcomed to the herd (remember the ear biting story?), and Buckwheat as expected, has implemented a lot of head butting. Alfalfa is a sweet angel, and treats her like the baby she is. Overall, things are okay, but it’s going to take another couple of days before they all begin getting along. Until then, Truffles is spending a lot of time in the house because I have zero trust in the Butternut/Buckwheat hazing situation. 

I have gotten a few questions as to what kind of goat Truffles is – she is a mini Nubian. Just as Buckwheat and Alfalfa are. Alfalfa is much larger than Buckwheat, so it will be interesting to see how large she gets. She was born on 3/16 which I find to be so sweet as 3:16 in the Bible is so meaningful to us all. I picked her up a bit early, so she is still on a bottle for a couple of weeks. I am opting to give her pasteurized goat milk from the grocery store which you can find at Whole Foods, Trader Joes, and Sprouts. Even our local grocery store has goat milk! Many bottle babies are raised on milk replacement, or vitamin D whole cows milk, but since this will only be for a few weeks, I decided to splurge on goat milk to keep Truffles’ tummy happy! I think that covers the questions I have been receiving about her, but if you have any more, please just leave them in the comments! 

I did manage to get out this week to help the guys move some of the older cows up to their summer rangeland. We are about done calving, and we’ve been doing a lot of sorting. This kind of cattle work is my absolute favorite! I love pulling the pairs out and moving them to a new field. I really don’t know much about western riding, because I grew up riding english, but sorting is the perfect way to learn. 

The guys pulled out the pairs, we left the heavies (still pregnant cows), and pushed them all up the hill to the tableland. It was a windy day, and I felt as if the wind was blowing right through me – even my teeth were cold! 

After we made our way up the hill, we checked fences, searched for any lost cattle, and then brought them together to pair up in their new field. While the guys held the mamas, I was left on babysitting duty, which I did not mind one bit. Calves are such cuties! I would like to bring them in the house too, but I think that would be even more frowned upon than bringing your goats in the house. 

As I write this, Truffles is asleep in my arms on the couch, and typing is proving to be quite difficult, so please excuse any typos ;). I hope you have a wonderful week, and as always, thanks so much for stopping by! 

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  1. Thanks for this sweet story – so glad you are welcoming little Truffles to the group, she is adorable.

    Barbara (in Lodi, CA)