My Farmy Christmas List



My sister Dana and her husband Paul recently gave me “Storey’s Illustrated Guide to Sheep, Goats, Cattle, and Pigs.” According to the marketing starburst thingy on its cover, this book is a guide to 163 breeds, COMMON AND RARE! I am very excited! Three hundred plus pages!!

Remember when you were a kid and the Sears “wish book” came out just before Christmas every year? (You probably only remember that if you’re old, like me.) Anyway, the arrival of the wish book meant hours of perusing, dreaming, and selecting a ridiculous list of stuff you would
A) never get, and
B) did not really expect to own.

It was all about the DELICIOUS PROCESS of making the list and imagining the fantasy Christmas morning when all your greedy little kid dreams were fulfilled. There would be a shiny new bicycle with tasseled handlebars and a pink, glittery, banana seat. There would be a complete “professional” art set with 95 paints, 42 brushes, pastels, an easel, and how-to book. There would be the hip, white, knee-high go-go boots everyone was wearing in 1969. The trendiest new lunchbox with a matching thermos; probably with Bobby Sherman or Davy Jones or the Partridge Family on the front of it. There would be Barbie, Ken, Skipper, AND Midge. (In retrospect, I would not cut Skipper’s hair off the same week I acquired her.) Anyway, looking through this book feels a LOT like that, but with farm animals.

So, put on your favorite Christmas music, pour some rum in that eggnog and get ready for my new animal husbandry Christmas list! Santa Claus is coming to town!

1. I need one Ancient White Park, not to be confused with the American British White Park. No spots, just pure white with black points. Black eyelashes would be good, too. I repeat, no spots.


2. I need two Ayrshire. That is one fine-ass cow.


3. A Galloway and a belted Galloway, one of each. They’re just too handsome NOT to have. Plus they’re Scottish, so will have sexy, garbled accents.



4. Four Pineywoods, because they’re Southern and endangered. And I like that name a lot. Pineywoods, pineywoods, pineywoods, pineywoods.


I will also need 9 big cow halters, two large shovels, a coarse brush, and about 42 bales of hay. And a barn. Oh, some buckets and some ear tags. And a quarter horse, so I can round up my cattle. Bridle and saddle trimmed in sterling silver for my horse would be good. Some shoes for my trusty steed.

Oh boy. I love goats… I need two of each of the following breeds: Alpine, Arapawa, Boer (dang it, they are so cute I want 4), Nubian, Oberhasli, Pygmy, Saanen, and Toggenburg. I can’t resist a horizontal pupil. Or an escape artist. Just look at these Boers!

And the Toggenburgs!


I also need 16 goat halters, goat-proof fence for six acres, and some more buckets. And another barn. Plus, a reliable person to do the milking at dawn. (Or someone who can teach goats not to produce their milk before noon.) Either will do.

1. Do NOT give me an American Yorkshire pig for Christmas. They are kind of handsome, but they have giant pig balls that freak me out and I do not want to see that before work every day. (Nor will I include a picture – you can research that on your time.)

2. I would like two Berkshires.


3. Four Mulefoots, because they are endangered, have an un-cloven hoof which makes for good conversation, AND I did not see any balls in the pictures… (So either they are smaller balls, or discreetly haired over… Either works for me.)

4. I will need a new iron frying pan for BACON!

I just realized I don’t need sheep. Ever. I will trade goat cheese and steak and bacon for wool as needed.

So, these few thousand dollars in purchases and a few hundred bucks in feed store gift cards should do it. Perhaps a few baby chicks and heirloom seed packets as stocking stuffers…

Ah, dreams of Christmas morn…

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4 Comments on “My Farmy Christmas List”

  1. Belle Says:

    I have a couple of berkshire crossed pigs. Wanna trade something? We need help raising our barn…



  2. David Says:

    Ok, now i am depressed. I remember almost every wih item that you mentioned. Maybe mine or my siblings. Anyway, on a brighter note, i still remember. Oh, the skillet will also take care of the mountain oysters.

    Merry Christmas
    David & Janet



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