Wide Earth Smallholding

Wide Earth Smallholding

And Allaah has made for you the earth a wide expanse.(Qur'aan- 71:19)

First Babies

Our new goat shed, for the does

Alhamdulillah, we bred Popsicle, our LaMancha cross, with Noodle, a magnificent Alpine from up the hill, and Sundew, one of our little Nubians, with our Nubian buck, but we did not breed Primrose.

Weeellll…we thought we hadn’t bred Primrose. Apparently, Primrose had other ideas, mash’Allaah.

So, to our credit, we did notice that she was getting fatter and fatter. Keep in mind that Primrose, another LaMancha, had lost her girlish figure with her first babies, a couple of years ago. She is, well, sort of wide and barrel-shaped to begin with. That being said, she was definitely wider and more barrel-shaped.

But we didn’t breed her, so she must not be pregnant, right? Right?

A few days ago Nusaybah noticed that Rosie’s udder was filling up with milk. Being the brilliant goat raisers that we are (sigh) we did, finally, admit that she was pregnant. How pregnant, we weren’t sure, but I knew from my experience nursing eight babies (human, of course), that when the milk comes in, the  babies can’t be far behind.

We just didn’t realize how NOT far behind they were.

The next morning, January 25th, Mu’aadh and Maryam came in and said that Rosie wouldn’t go on the goat walk with them, and that she was acting a bit odd. Nusaybah went out to feed the goats, and a few minutes later, Mu’aadh and Maryam came dashing in to where I was getting ready to teach class online (a class that was, ultimately, cancelled) and Mu’aadh yelled,

“Primrose is LAYING A BABY!!!”

Well. I sprang into action, grabbing my scarf with one hand and the phone with the other. I called my friend and goat mentor, Alice, and relayed the fact to her. She asked if we’d be alright, and I said, “I HOPE SO, INSH’ALLAAH” in a probably not super calm tone of voice, and dashed out.

Our new goat shed, for the does
Our new goat shed, for the does

Baby number one was attempting to make an appearance with what looked like a large helmet of water on its head.

I called Alice, got her machine, and said something lost to memory, and then looked again. Baby number one was all the way out, and Rosie was licking her off. I called Alice again. We danced happily around, the children all yelling “ALHAMDULILLAH!!” Alice joined in as well, from Texas, I’m sure.

Then she dropped the bomb.

“Primrose has always had two babies, so another one will probably come in a half an hour or so.”


I cancelled class, and we all stood out in the goat shed watching Primrose (who was very calm and quiet and dignified) lick and butt her kid, knocking her down every time she tried to get up on her shaky little legs.  A large sack filled with fluid hung from her bottom. I was thankful the children didn’t ask TOO many questions, just the basics.

I stood in front of the fire, warming up my freezing hands.

No baby.

I sent messages to everyone I could think of, telling them what was going on.

No baby.

I told jokes and imparted wise advice to my children. Really.

No baby.

Kristin dropped off her (human!) baby for babysitting and we chatted a bit.

No baby.


Finally, after about an hour, a little head appeared, in a little sack as well. Rosie was in an odd place, with her bottom up against the shed wall. It looked like the baby couldn’t get out, because of the wall being there. I had my hand on Rosie’s side, talking to her. She was calm except for, of course, when a contraction came and she would try, unsuccessfully, to push her kid out.

After quite awhile of this, with all of the children looking at me in that way that children do when they truly expect that you can and should do something to change whatever is happening for the better, I decided I would try to give Primrose just a little help. I gently put my hands around the kid’s little head and shoulder area, and, when Rosie contracted again, sort of gently pulled and slid the baby away from the shed wall.

Woooooosh. Like that, she was out. Primrose started licking her right away, and within a couple of minutes, the kid was trying to get up.

Again the goat shed rang with “ALHAMDULILLAH” ‘s and great jumping and joyfulness and gratitude commenced.

The first little ones born on Wide Earth, and truly, all praise is due to Allaah alone!

We are thinking of flower names for the doelings. Any suggestions?


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  1. hmmmmmm

    asalaamu alaiki waramatulahi wabarakatahu very insightful question!

    I’d have to say regretfully because I have to live this. I thought I lived carefully and “frugally” by choice-but truth is, my car broke down permanently in the beginning of June and it really shook me up. I’m still relatively new to a few ideas so it was everything all in one. The thought of having to rely on people to get things done, wait for the bearded one to be available and not at work and it was amazing how much I wanted to go do, see, and places to go I suddenly wanted to attend now that the option to go wasn’t available.

    Now I can say after 4 years of homeschooling (we started in “preschool”) I have come a long way. I started recycling and re-using a tiny bit before I became muslim and just started little by little. I can say I have a LONG way to go sadly but AlHamdulillah I have made STRIDES by leaps and bounds in this area. For homeschooling I’ve learned to use 3 different libraries, make my own worksheets, borrow ideas, use the net and buy books from thrift stores and garage sales. I’ve learned to get free books that the schools no longer use or from relatives and friends whose kids finished that grade. This saves me literally hundreds of dollars a year and I save books (which I love) and re-use. I also learned to use old boxes, bags, extra paper, shipping materials; egg cartons, and extras laying around for projects, arts and crafts and activities vs buying supplies.

    We also planted a few small plants 1 hot pepper, 1 jalapeño, and one tomato plant in an effort of learning to grow and eat our own. All this stuff I NEVER did before and it feels good to teach my daughter life skills and that she doesn’t have to “buy” every single thing she needs.

    1. We do the homeschooling in exactly the way you do. When we were in Yemen, we had some materials- first some that we bought, but later some we purchases from a family who came back to the States. But always my first resource was- myself. I wrote them their reading books, math books, you name it, alhamdulillah. It was actually fun, and now we are using some of those books to make some curriculum books for Muslim children, starting with preschool, and hopefully, insh’Allaah, working our way up.
      The gardening, on any scale, is simply wonderful in about a thousand ways, alhamdulillah. Mmmmm….you have a little salsa garden!!
      Our hot peppers grew a few fruits, but our jalapeno never fruited, mash’Allaah. Our tomatoes grew really well, but the larger ones only produced a few fruits, while the ones with small fruits like Yellow Pear and Grape produced a lot more. Now our old compost pile is growing some watermelon!

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