Wow! What a write up!

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Tuesday, June 28, 2011 9:11 PM

Special thanks to Sundari Elizabeth Kraft for alerting me to this write up.  Wow!  I'll be contacting the blogger in case she decides she really does want to do a full story.  Too cool!!!

It’s Always Greener: At Havenscourt Homestead

That's my boy!

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Monday, June 27, 2011 10:03 PM

I am so proud of Sammy!  He is an amazing creature.  This is the only publicly posted picture I can find of him related to his film debut.  But I'm already working on his acting resume!  And a big extra special THANK YOU to Kate Merrill for handling him on set.

Castle Rock Farm Tsamma - "Sammy"
  • Birth date:  05/29/09
  • Height: 22-1/2"
  • Weight: 55 lbs
  • Hair:  Silver/Gray Agouti with Black Stockings
  • Unicorns - A film by Leah Meyerhoff
  • Supporting Actor (Title Role)
  • Animals On Parade, LLC
  • Commedia Dell Arte
  • Cameo Appearance in final show at the 2010 Northern California Renaissance Faire
  • Commedia Volante
 Volunteer / Community Service:
  • Resident Havenscourt Homestead
  • 2010 Eat Real Festival
  • 2010 Northern California Renaissance Faire
  • 2011 Go for the Goat - Rockridge Market Hall
  • 2011 Bay Friendly Garden Tour
  • 2011 Valhalla Renaissance Faire
  • 2011 Urban Farm Tour
Special Skills:
  • Trained Therapy Animal
  • Good with children, elderly, and disabled
  • Photogenic
  • Trained to carry a day pack
  • Easily trained to work with various props (i.e. strap-on unicorn horn)
  • Neighborhood walks
  • Barnyard games
  • Camping
  • Hiking
Performance / Casting inquiries:
         Kitty Sharkey
         Havenscourt Homestead
         Oakland, CA

Welcome Home Sara Lee

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Sunday, June 26, 2011 10:22 AM

Drum roll please...

Introducing the newest addition to Havenscourt Homestead:


Isn't she beautiful? 

Yesterday was a big day here at Havenscourt Homestead as I welcomed home my new doe, Sara Lee.  The morning started early.  I picked up Freya at about 8 AM and headed up to Castle Rock Farm.

I had previously met my new girl when Kate and I went up to help Sarah with her Linear Appraisal.  She was beautiful and super friendly.  But I needed to know that she would fit in with the rest of my herd. 

I also wanted to make sure she was in no way aggressive and that she was okay with kids since we do so much work with children.  When the appraisal was over and they put out alfalfa for all the girls, I was sold.  Rather than diving into the meal like most of the other goats, Sara Lee was spending time with Amanda's little girl.  Absolutely perfect!

Unfortunately, the time wasn't right for me to bring her home.  I was scheduled to head up to Tahoe for the Valhalla Renaissance Faire and 12 days of camping.  I figured this would be too much stress on Sara Lee, so I decided to hold off until I could spend more time helping integrate her into the herd.

When I got back from Tahoe, I had to prep for the Urban Farm Tour.  Being sick didn't help with that at all.  But I managed to get the place spic-n-span and opened my gate to about 140 visitors.  It was a lot of fun and very educational for the tour visitors.  But the added bonus was that I earned enough money to pay for Sara Lee.  As Freya put it, my hobby is now paying for my hobby.

The coolest thing happened when Freya and I got up to Castle Rock Farm.  Sarah was finishing up a few chores, so we let ourselves into the pasture to play with the goats.  The first pasture had a bunch of little kids who were uber cute.  But I wanted to head into the pasture with the big girls.  The moment (and I mean THE MOMENT) Freya and I went through the gate, Sara Lee came over to us for some loving.  No one else.  Just her.  How cool is that?  It's like she knew.

Once I got Sara home, there was the expected jostling in the barnyard as everyone sniffed, headbutted, and chased her all over the yard.  It took her a while to figure out the stumps, but she finally started jumping on them.  She's also used to a ramp on the milk stand rather than having to hop up.  But she'll figure that out as well.  All in all, she's doing well this morning.

My only issue?  She appears to be camera shy.  But we'll work on that!

Camping and Hunting with Goats!

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Tuesday, June 14, 2011 8:38 PM

Mushroom hunting that is.  Mmmm... Morels!!!

The goats and I returned home yesterday from 12 days camping at Camp Richardson in South Lake Tahoe.  Let me just say that camping with goats RULES!  They are so much fun!  They really enjoyed it.  And all the other folks camping during the week really enjoyed them too.  There were several small children that especially liked visiting them.  A special thanks to Elyza Bartlett, my friend Randy Bartletts' 7 year old daughter, who came over almost every morning and night to help with the feeding.  She has goats and chickens at home and was a big help!  She is a chicken whisperer!

Although I've participated at the Valhalla Renaissance Faire for years, this was my time as a vendor.  I set up a petting zoo called Haven's Court.  I had to make a substantial investment in fencing in order to do so, but I really enjoyed it. 

My goal was to earn enough to pay off the fencing.  Because of rain, attendance was down the first weekend.  But the second weekend was really crowded.   Although I didn't completely pay off the fencing, I came very close. The barnyard was a hit with both patrons and participants alike.  We even managed to sell some wild flower seed bombs.  Here's a picture of my friend Pam King posing with Moremi.

Special thanks to Freya Gereke, Ragani Harris, Teresa Sotelo, and Kate Merrill for their help in the barnyard.  Freya - I couldn't have done it without you!  I'm so glad I talked (dragged) you into coming.  I'm glad you had a wonderful vacation.  Same time next year! 

Due to the heavy rains followed by the bright sunshine, it was the perfect time to go hunting for some morels.  My friend and mushrooming partner Kate Merrill showed up for the second weekend.  We convinced Cory Huynh to join us and the goats for a little jaunt into the woods.   We even ran into my friend Tina Bailey and her family who joined in the hunt.

Once we were far enough away from the campsite, I was able to let the goats off leash. Well, sort of. They were tethered together in pairs so if one decided to take off, the other would counter balance the pull. Happily, they just followed us around where ever we went. Sammy was a pro at carrying our water in his packs. All the training we've done walking together through the East Bay Regional Park District really paid off. What a blast to have them along.

It was Cory's first time hunting for mushrooms.  Can I just say he's a natural?  Once he got into the zone, he found more than anyone else.  He even found a white one!  Too cool. 

The result of our afternoon hike?  My hat chock full of morels!!!  Kate has a dehydrator, so she took them home for processing.  I plan on using some of them as part of the final feast in Sunset Magazine's One Block Party Contest.

All in all?  One hell of a vacation!!!

HH featured in the SF Chronicle and the Urban Farm Tour!

Posted by Kitty Sharkey 9:45 AM

Havenscourt Homestead will be featured on the Urban Farm Tour next Sunday.  We were included in a great article in the San Francisco Chronicle.  Check it out!

Meet the farmer next door

For more information on the tour and to sign up, please visit the following site:  Urban Farm Tours

Sammy's PACKING! No, not a pistol...

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Wednesday, June 1, 2011 10:24 AM

It looks like Sammy is singing...

"I'm too sexy for my pack.  Too sexy for my pack.  Too sexy.  Oh Yeah!"

" I do my little dance on the goat walk."
Sammy's new pack arrived today.  Now we're ready for some day hikes up in Tahoe next week (weather permitting).  No, he won't be carrying much to start out with.   We'll probably start with just a couple small bottles of water (must have an even load), a collapsible dog bowl for drinking it, and perhaps some treats for the trail for both the goats and I.

Isn't he soooooooooo cute?  Yeah, he is the main man in my life.  Love him!!!