Connie and I have been admirers of Jan Patek and Linda Brannock’s work for years and years. In 200 Jan called and asked if I would take a mama goat with a baby. She had bought them at a flea market and one of the babies had already been killed on the road and she decided she just couldn’t keep them. She and her grandson Jake drove the goats in her car to Country Threads. (Why don’t I have a picture of THAT?)
I always name animals after the people I get them from so the mama became Jan and the baby boy became Jake. This was in June. Fast forward to October 26 – a cold night and Carly barked and barked about something down by the barn which I didn’t investigate at the time. I got ready for bed and remembered the barking – outside the barn I found Jill with a black and white baby! I also heard crying – almost human sounding. There around the corner was a tiny baby goat – still wet and now covered with dirt. I picked it up and put it inside my jacket and ran to the house. (You have to know how excited I was!). Rick made me take it back to the barn and I put Jill and both babies inside together. The next morning at 5 am (I couldn’t sleep) I could not find that tiny baby in the barn pen. After much searching I found her curled up inside a cement block to get away from Jill – who hated her!
That was enough for me. I grabbed that baby and took her to the house, went to a farmer who milks cows and got colostrum to feed her. She weighed 1.9 pounds.
I got a nipple to fit on a pop bottle and she learned to eat quickly!
She grew and became my shadow. She lived in a dog kennel at night but was very much a “house goat”.
She learned to go outside to pee or she used a rug in the kitchen.
It’s quite obvious, isn’t it, that the baby boy goat was older than we may have thought. Jake impregnated Jill who bore Sally and Susannah 5 months after he arrived. I could tell Susannah stories from now till tomorrow and love every minute of it. She is the main character of a series of children’s books that I have inside my head and would love to produce. Except there’s that problem of marketing which I want no part of. I think Susannah the goat could be as famous as Olivia the pig!
On to the story – Jan visited again in April 2002 to teach a class here and got to meet Susannah in person!
Janny the mama goat and Jake the “baby ” lived out their natural lives here on the farm.
Jan Patek remains a friend with a real connection to Country Threads and this Susannah story has been my introduction to Jan’s new book, Tabletop Turnabouts. The size of these little quilts is perfect, 12″ x 12″ and when combined with a piece of sashing between two blocks, it can hang over a small rack or cupboard door.
I love Jan’s introduction that says “perfect appliqué is overrated”! I love her attitude and have decided I will make one of these little quilts while I sit on the porch. When I’m finished I’m going to offer the book as a giveaway. I will enjoy the book first, keep it in nice shape – hopefully not spilling any coffee or beer on it – and then I’ll pass it on to one of you! Now which little “turnabout ” shall I make? I think it will be Garden House because there’s a dog by the house.
Connie might like to make one, too.
Susannah was the love of my life and I will never again have such a close bond to an animal. I am so sorry she didn’t live until we closed the shop and could be free in the yard all day. That was my great hope.
Here’s one of my favorite photos of Susannah and me.
Thank you, Jan Patek, for the greatest fun I’ve ever had!