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True Stories

Get behind the scenes! The knee-skinning, breath-taking, heart-wrenching, side-aching stories that make up our journey at the Invenit Paradiso ranch!  

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A little Faith...

Posted on May 4, 2018 at 2:25 PM Comments comments (0)
Faith was born about 5 minutes before a torrential down-pour which transformed the weather from a luke-warm spring day, into a frigid, not-baby-friendly scene. Luckily, on an mama-instinct, I stopped by the ranch, between business meetings, just to check in on everyone...to find two freshly kidded Nubian / Cashmere doelings. The first-born was the size of our week-old bucklings, her twin, on the other hand, could have passed for a mini-Nigerian...easily. They were a MESS, soaking wet still from the afterbirth, and mama pacing back and forth, not sure she was finished, hadn't started attending to their cleanup yet. I inspected them both, and decided I'd better assist, and quick, since both were losing body heat due to the weather. I raced inside - grabbed towels, vitamin drench, cotton balls and betadine, and sanitized scissors. Back in the barn, things were getting better for the larger of the twins, but the little one was getting that look in her eyes...not good. I tucked her in my barn jacket, smearing what was of the afterbirth on her left shoulder on my "brand-new, white floral, work blouse"....ahhh such is life. Once inside I pushed into the bathroom, which is always nice and warm, but not before glancing at the clock....almost 2 p.m.....I had to get the kids in 45 min, and I am 45 minutes away.... Quick call to my Knight, and we were all set, he would pick up the kids, and I could focus on saving this little tiny goat. I whispered to her, as I rubbed her with a new, dry towel. You are strong, and I have faith in you! Sure enough, after an hour of rubbing the crud off, giving her a squirt of vitamin drench, and disinfecting, and trimming her umbilical cord, she was starting to look like she might just want to stand on her own. Whew...sigh of relief, but we weren't out of the woods yet. This baby needed some colostrum, or we are sunk! Took her back down to mama, but mama wasn't having it, so I mixed up some good quality frozen powered colostrum, checked it for temp on my wrist, and coaxed the little goat to suckle. Sure enough, after a minute of letting the first warm, buttery drop drizzle its way down her throat, she was alive with her drive to eat, and drank for all her might! We placed her in a cardboard box with a blanket, and put a heating pad underneath. She slept well, but boy if she didn't have an internal clock set for feedings at two hours in the dot! Sleep weary, but smiling, we spent much of her first three days initiating her to barn-life for little by little, and alternating between milking mama so we could bottle-feed the baby, and putting the baby on her mama while on the stanchion. Finally, on the fourth day, the weather broke, the sun stayed out all day, warming both the barn, and the barn-yard, so we let go, and let our little Faith be a real goat. She may be tiny, but she is mighty!

God wants Chicks?!

Posted on January 12, 2018 at 12:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Just as the conversation got started, between my youngest son and me, about whether or not we should throw a couple of the extra eggs we've been getting, in the incubator....and I mean just then, we came to the last rise in the highway, before turning onto our road....and there it was, a CHICKEN CLOUD!

We couldn't believe our eyes, we laughed and agreed, once we turned safely onto the quiet dirt road, THIS was worth documenting (thanks for the snapshot kiddo), and following through on -

Our evening yield - 5 lovely eggs, all different shades....see you chicks in 21+/- days.....oh shoot, does that qualify as - Counting your chickens before they hatch???!!!! Hmmmm

Love and Loss

Posted on May 11, 2017 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)
Losing a loved one is hard. 

I've experienced alot of loss in my life already, from my younger brother, to my best friend in high school, 
to each of my grandparents, and an innumerable list of dear pets...

It never does get easier, but the love is always worth it - 

I told my youngest son, just after we finished laying our little paralyzed bunny to rest - 
"Don't let this make your heart hard, love hurts sometimes, but you still push through, 
and love with all your might!"

He nodded knowingly, and hugged me hard.
What I wouldn't give to keep him from ever feeling this sadness again, 
but I guess that is why love is so precious, because it is a gift, with no guarantee -

Here is to LOVE!  

Every Day Random Hearts!

Posted on April 4, 2017 at 8:35 PM Comments comments (0)

I can't tell you why, or how often I see them.....but there are hearts everywhere, literally!

Today, I saw one in the most unlikely of places......if you can guess it accurately, you'll have a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to spend right here!  

Game on - starting NOW :D Good luck everyone! 

Baby Fever @ Invenit Paradiso Ranch!

Posted on April 6, 2016 at 12:55 AM Comments comments (0)

There's something about that sweet smell that babies have, and baby goats are no exception....it's a mix of grass hay, and soft baby musk....hmmm, next on my TO DO list.....have to figure out how to "bottle" that ;) 

Garden - 2016

Posted on March 10, 2016 at 6:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Whether you are planning your garden, pondering whether your thumb is green, or black, or simply listening to songs about Gardens (Garden - by Needtobreathe, is phenomenal, by the way)......Gardens mean so much, they represent new birth, cycles of the seasons, and even death, when the crop has been reaped, and the  final breath is released. So, as the green begins to show in the corners of our lives, let's be inspired by the promise of life. 

~ Hope 

Desiderata - Words to live by

Posted on January 26, 2016 at 6:00 AM Comments comments (0)

~ Words to live by ~
In a world that seeks to pull you this way, and that...build up false bravado, or tear you down 'til you feel negligible...you need a rock solid reminder of your true foundation. I credit my parents for instilling this value, and for tuning me into to this brilliant guide to life. I still keep a weathered copy in the middle section of my purse, right next to my kids medical history cards. 
I'm curious - What's your mantra? Here's mine:

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. 
As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly, and clearly; and listen to others , even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. 
Avoid loud and agressive persons, they are vexations of the spirit.

If you compare yourself to others, you may become vain and bitter; 
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But, let this not blind you 
to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be Yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all 
aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, 
gracefully surrendering the things of youth. 

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. 
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. 

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and 
the stars, you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe if unfolding as 
it should. 

Therefore, be at peace with God, whatever you conceive him to be, and whatever your labors or aspirations in the noisy
confusion of life, keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, 
it is still a beautiful world. 

Be cheerful. Strive to be happy. 

Kombucha Brewing

Posted on January 19, 2016 at 8:45 PM Comments comments (1)



I am excited to begin this adventure, and while I am sure that we'll share many stories both of success and failure...and in everywhere between, I figured since this is my first blog, I would share a success story -





• 1 – quart-sized wide-mouth container

(Glass or BPA-free plastic, preferrably)


• 1 – strainer (fine-mesh, but no metal, preferably)


• 1 – breath-able fabric

(paper coffee filters work great!)

• 1 – rubber band (for securing breath-able fabric)



• 1 - Scoby (symbiotic culture of bacterial yeast)

** Don't have a local resource? Check my webstore for fresh naturally formed scoby!

• 2 – tea bags

• ¼ cup of sugar

(don’t use a substitute here, trust me these little guys love sugar!)

• 1 Qt. of hot water



• Steep tea bags in hot water for 5 min., add sugar & stir to dissolve.

Let tea come to room temperature.

• Add scoby, and cover with breathable fabric. Let jar sit in a warm area for 7-10 days.

• Smell your kombucha every couple of days…once you can start to smell a slight vinegar smell, you are fermenting.

• Strain your kombucha through a non-metal strainer into a new container, leaving a little fluid in the jar to keep your scoby from drying out while you make a new batch of tea. This left over fluid also helps to keep your brew strong.



The good:

• If you store your newly harvested kombucha in an air-tight container, and add either a little bit of fruit juice, or pieces of fruit, and keep it on your pantry shelf for another 7-10 days, your kombucha will go through a second ferment  and becomes effervescent….really good!

• Try using fruity teas, like passion fruit, or spicy, like ginger, instead of traditional black tea….also, really good!

The bad:

• Hot tea will kill your scoby

• Not securing your breath-able material on your kombucha jar can lead to fruit flies laying eggs on your scoby….not good.

• Keeping your scoby in an area that is too cold can encourage mold to grow…..also, not good.

The ugly:

o Scoby are funny looking, but handle-able once they are a month or two old, if you need to put them in a new, or larger    container. They kind of feel like touching a sting-ray...only they aren’t as cute (its better than calling them ugly, right?)

o Baby scoby – you can harvest baby scoby from a variety of places –

o Baby scobies form under-neath the mother scoby in your fermenting jar, when you harvest your kombucha, you can dump what is left in your strainer into a new jar, add the tea starter, and viola!, new scoby!

o Baby scobies will also form in your second ferment, so be sure to strain that as well!

o Keep in mind, baby scoby will form in any jar, (or drinking glass for that matter), of kombucha which is left out on the counter (I kid you not, I harvested a baby scoby which formed in a bottle of kombucha in my son’s school locker!)

Finally, kombucha is weird, but tastes great, and is really good for you….

I recommend that you play with different recipes, and fermenting durations, and finally, rest assured it is almost impossible to ruin a kombucha, afterall, if you let it go too far, you get vinegar, which is essentially the “lemonade” of the kombucha world.