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How It Started... How It's Going - The Milking Parlor Edition

How It's Going:

It’s hard to believe, but James and I left NYC to start a farm 10 years ago this month! When we got here, there was a collapsed barn from the 1950’s (see below!), a house, a shed, and not much else.


We built a little wooden milking stand for our first goats by hand. A year later, my Stepdad and Grandpa helped James renovate the “old red barn” and transform it into the milking parlor and milk room that we used for the last 6 years.


Thanks to y'all and our amazing team of humans and goaties, we’ve grown out of our original space, and for the last year something exciting has been under construction- the LSF Mothership!


We are so excited about this beautiful building and Phase 1 of the structure that will bring our whole team together under one roof. This week our very favorite “people” were the first to move in - the goats, of course!

 

Scroll down for a first look at the new milking parlor in action, as well as memories of the old barn that helped pave the way ❤️.

 

Inside The New Milking Parlor At LSF

Inside The New Milking Parlor: Big glass garage doors, windows, and skylights keep the milking area naturally nice and bright, helping to keep the goats from experiencing the stress that can happen if they enter a dark space from the sunlight outside.

 

Each goat on the milking stand has their own stanchion with a spot for treats (alfalfa grass pellets - nom nom) and safety rails to keep everyone's horns to themselves.

 

One of my favorite features for the humans: windows from the new break room look down into the milking parlor! 

 

How It Started:

The "old red barn" as it was fondly known was a working milking barn back in the 1950's. Unfortunately when we moved to the farm in 2012 it had seen better days and was unsafe to use. We salvaged wood from the barn to build our first chicken coop and decided to create a milking area in the tool shed.

 

Nevat, one of our first pups (she'll be 10 in the fall) testing out our handmade milking stand. This was back when we first started the process of weaning our goat's off of grain and going fully grassfed. The little green pellets are alfalfa grass and the little brown grains are sprouted spelt (yum!). 

 

Hand milking on the handmade stand.

 

Once we settled in a bit, it was time to give the old red barn her ultimate makeover. My Step Dad, Jim and my Grandpa O'Hara came out to the farm and helped us renovate the milking parlor and milk handling rooms from the ground up!  We were able to keep the original cement milking ramp from the 1950's, and then installed some new features like skylights and a huge sliding back door (the size of that open space above) so that we could bring in the sunlight and create a calming environment for the goats.

 

We moved our handmade milking stand into the renovated milking barn. This is Tijeras, enjoying the new digs in 2013.

 

I still vividly remember teaching my mom how to milk so that James could be with me for our first kiddo's birth. She ended up having to run the farm by herself for several days while we were in NICU!

 

When we finally came home with baby George, he started helping with milking straight away.  Our kids went from being worn, to crawling, to toddling, to helping milk in this barn. So many memories live here.

 

My Grandpa helped us tile the milk handling room and the soap making area and painstakingly hand set the subway and herringbone pattern that I had thought would be easy peasy to create (ha not so much!). James and I learned so much from Jim and Grandpa and we're still so touched by the time and effort they, and the rest of our family has put into helping us turn our dreams into reality. 

 

 

 

As we cycle into the next decade at Little Seed, we do so with so much gratitude for all that we've experienced in our first 10 years here.

 

Thank you for joining us for the ride!