Amish Country Farm Grows Goats, Guinea Hogs and Great Family

Sarah Jo's children and her kids.

Sarah Jo’s children…and her kids.

Country Life first met Sara Jo and her family through her cousin, Diane, who’s a marketing team member at Lehman’s. She submitted a great recipe for goat’s milk custard (it’s below), but CL wanted to know more. What drove this young family to a homesteading lifestyle right here in Wayne County, Ohio? And although dairy’s a big business here, why choose goats? Sara Jo was patient with questions, and here’s her story.

I was born in Orrville and grew up on family dairy farm on North Kohler Road. My grandfather, Paul Maurer, owned the farm and worked it along with my father, Joe Maurer. My father sold the cows about 4 years ago, so the farm is a crop farm only now.

I tried all kinds of other jobs and even lived in Columbus for a while. It just wasn’t home. I loved the farm. In fact, as far back as you can find the U.S. census lists “farmer” as the occupation for my dad’s family. I guess the love of family and farming is just in my blood.

Jason, my husband, was also born in Orrville.  He was employed by Besancon’s in Smithville milking cows. He worked the first years of our marriage at Rohrer Farms (also in Smithville.)  He grew to love the work and the livestock as well. Continue reading

The Backyard Barista: Best Caprineccino Ever!

Alpine Doe goat

Jenna’s Alpine doe goat, Bonita, one of several productive animals at Cold Antler Farm.

 To round out the Dairy Month of June, Jenna Wogenrich, homesteader and author joins Country Life to share how her goat makes the perfect cup of joe!

I put off keeping dairy animals for a long time. They were intimidating to me, as I think they are to a lot of farm-curious folks. Unlike other livestock that has a lot of flexibility surrounded your schedule and their care – an animal with a full udder has a very specific dance card. You and she have a tango twice a day, every day. It’s a serious commitment, but let’s not take ourselves too seriously. Raising goats is a lot of fun and I am going to share with you just one of the many reasons why a backyard goat could make your life a whole lot better:

The most amazing cup of coffee in the entire world!

Continue reading