Today is an exceptional day. First, it is Friday the Thirteenth. Second, it is a full moon, specifically the Harvest Moon. It is called the Harvest Moon as it is the full moon that occurs closest to the Autumnal Equinox. In addition, it is also a micro moon, which means that the moon is positioned at its apogee, its most distant point away from the Earth along its orbit. Full moons are wondrous times to sit back and reflect, let go of what no longer serves you, and the harvest is the best time to gather together what nourishes you and leave the rest.
Crip autumn days with crunchy leaves underfoot, brisk breezes demanding jumpers, cardigans and hoodies along with warm drinks and new books is such a lovely time of year. Although the year is nearly over, when September rolls around it always feels to me like a fresh start. Maybe commit embarking on a new challenge for the fall – perhaps reading a new book per month, making a new friend, or taking up a short course to learn a new skill. The possibilities are endless.
Can y’all believe there is only one month left in 2018? The time can go by so fast sometimes, and this time of year is especially easy to feel over-booked. Take some time to think and reflect about the year before it slips away, there is still time to accomplish many things before 2019 rolls in!
Even goats get itchy sometimes. Itches are scientifically known as pruritus, basically a general neurological response to irritants that come in contact with the skin. Most of the time, itches are just momentary nuisances; however, sometimes an itch is the body’s response to exposure to harmful things like urushiol. Goats are lucky that they do not get the same painful, itchy rash from the urushiol found on poison ivy and other plants. However, goats may get itchy from itch mites and lice, and even excessively dry skin. Horns and hooves make good tools for satisfying the occasional itch, and most of the time an itch is just an itch.
My friend Chloe Ashley sent me a photograph of this sassy black goat who resides at Hackney City Farm in London. I am quite keen on the concept of the urban farm, a refuge in the middle of a city where food is grown and farm animals can thrive. I will definitely have to visit Hackney sometime soon.
Time snuck up on me today! Sometimes the weekends can be so busy and fun you nearly forget to do some important things, but don’t worry y’all – I did not forget! I hope that you are all having some lovely weekend adventures, please enjoy this amazing caprine from Buttercups Sanctuary for Goats.
It is getting cold out there, I strongly suggest dressing in layers. Angora goats are known for their distinctive, soft and luxurious coat that is processed to make mohair. Mohair is often a popular choice for winter clothing because it is very easy to dye as it is naturally white or silver. However, in recent years, it has come to light that Angora goats exploited for their wonderful coats are heinously and cruelly abused, leading some major clothing companies to ban mohair altogether. Although mohair knits can be snuggly and warm, there are plenty of perfectly suitable synthetic options that don’t involve cruelty towards the Angora goats.
Today, in the United States, is Thanksgiving. There is a lot of problematic mythology surrounding Thanksgiving in the United States. It did not originate as a peaceful gathering between American Indians sharing their bounty with English settlers, although that is the story most American school-children get growing up and is still purported by most sources. However, feasting in society serves an important purpose amalgamating social ties, familial ties, religious observances, and economic relationships. Sharing a large meal amongst a group of individuals can re-affirm social and familial ties as well as redistribute and share resources. Thanksgiving menus are special and many dishes are usually only served once or twice a year. Many Americans see Thanksgiving as the official start of the festive season leading up to Christmas and the New Year. Some (not all) may use the Thanksgiving feast as a means to fuel-up for another problematic American tradition – the violent Black Friday shopping spree. Whether you buy into the white-washed American mythology of Thanksgiving or not, gratitude is really important, and if you are reading this you at least have something to be grateful for. I’m grateful for my family, my warm flat, and the opportunity to share a goat with y’all everyday. Have a wonderful holiday y’all.
One of the loveliest things about autumn is the transformation of leaves from green to beautiful yellows, oranges and reds, eventually falling to the each dried and crunchy. Although the colder and shorter days may be less pleasant than the warm and sunny spring and summer, find some joy in the last moments before winter and have a go at crunching on some leaves. Trust me, it’s quite fun.