Once upon a time there was a dream. After attending a thanksgiving dinner where homemade goat milk cheese was served, a little fire began to burn. The idea that one could raise their own goats and make cheese from their milk seemed like an idyllic fantasy. Was it really possible? We were just city folks in Santa Cruz, California with no land to speak of, yet the dream persisted. After our twins were born in the midst of the economic crisis of 2008, it was time to take the leap and trade in commuting for cultivating. In 2012 we found 72 beautiful acres in the Applegate Valley of Southern Oregon and got to work.
The property included twin granddaddy pear trees, and with a wink and nod towards are own twin kids, we dubbed our homestead Twin Pear Farm. The first few years were focused on making our rustic 1930s home inhabitable and giving TLC to very overgrown gardens and trees. While we worked on improvements, Westi dabbled in the kitchen perfecting food preservation and canning the variety of abundant fruit on the property. Soon we built our first chicken coop, started a flock, and quickly our Roadside Farmstand was born to share the (literal) fruits of our labor.
Finally, in 2016, the long awaited goats finally arrived! We started with 4 high quality, purebred Nigerian Dwarf goats–their milk is ideal for cheesemaking–and quickly realized breeding would be an important and necessary part of our operation to keep the milk flowing. Well, it stands to reason that if you’re going to breed a quality doe, they should be bred to an equally nice or nicer buck. Our second year into breeding, we were asked to help fill out the Nigerian Dwarf numbers at a local show and our homebred doe, Twin Pears LBB Stormy Weather, took first place junior doe. The seed was now firmly planted in quality breedings and the aim to produce correct animals. Today we house about 30 goats, if we keep our numbers in check, and have some of the finest and highest milk producing genetics in the country. Our goats are usually at the head of the line in the show ring, achieve high Linear Appraisal scores and ELITE milk production status.
Once the goats officially stole the show at our farm, our products shifted from chicken eggs and jam to premium farm-to-bath goat milk skin care. This is an amazing way to use our abundance of luscious goat milk! We were so unprepared for our success that we sold out of our entire stock of goat milk soaps at our first holiday market. The amazing feedback from our customers is what keeps us going!
But our story continues to evolve. As our herd and two-legged kids grew, the focus on goats and goat milk soaps increased right along with it. 11 years in, we realized we had accomplished all of our goals with homesteading, poultry, our beloved community farmstand on our 72 acres and were ready for a change. In 2023 we made the BIG leap to sell our sanctuary in the Applegate and move to a smaller, 10 acre streamlined farm with a big snug barn for all of the goats in Ashland, Oregon. Today the focus is strictly on our beloved goats and our award-winning goat milk products. It’s wonderful! We’re still getting settled, but there are plans to propegate twin pear trees from the originals at our new farm.