What do goats have to do with finances?

August 8, 2023

Let’s be honest: As much as you’re reading this for the financial advice, you’re also here for the farm shenanigans! 🐐

As you’re all overdue for animal stories and pictures, I want to share a story about our goats. 

We have two Nigerian dwarf goats: Sugar & Spice

Both came to us from different backgrounds and interact with us in completely separate ways. Sugar came to us when she was just a few weeks old. As part of a set of triplets, the owners decided to have the mother focus on the two smaller babies. Sugar was bottle-fed, so she depended on humans to care for her from the beginning of her life. When we went to bring her home for the first time, she was walking around with the humans and ambled right up to the girls and begged to be picked up. We brought her home and continued to feed her from a bottle.  

She depended on the girls to feed her and all of us to keep her company. The girls had their first experience with taking care of a goat with one who thinks she is a human. She has wandered into our house a few times, and she still considers herself a lap goat even though she has been living out in the pasture with her own kind for several years now. 

Now Spice, on the other hoof, was very wary of humans at the beginning. We picked her up when she had just been weaned from her mother. She had depended on her goat mom for food and other goats for company, so when we got her home, she wanted nothing to do with us humans. The girls were hurt and confused. Fortunately, we still had Sugar who preferred to be held.  

We had to talk to the girls about how both Sugar and Spice are both goats, but they were raised differently, which, in turn, causes them to each behave differently and interact with us differently. Sugar came to us trusting and dependent on humans. With Spice we were going to have to get her to trust us, which is a process and happens very gradually over time.  

As a family, we came up with ways that we could build trust with Spice through consistent interaction with her. Sally goes out every morning to let the goats and sheep into the pasture. She brings them in every evening as well. From the beginning, she would bring a bit of grain with her, and over time Spice would come up and eat out of her hand. Soon, she could pet her head while feeding her grain. Now Sally can slowly walk over to Spice and pet her without her running away.  

From the kitchen window, I get to watch Sally say good morning to the animals, and when I see her petting Spice, my heart is so happy. The consistent time Sally puts into getting Spice to trust her is really beautiful. Then, of course, comes Sugar: pushing herself in the middle and getting right in Sally’s face or putting her front hooves on her shoulder…yep–still thinks she’s a human. Sally really seeks to be trusted in life. It is one of her highest values. So, getting the farm animals to trust her is her biggest motivator. She understands it takes time and is earned and she is willing to put in the time because she finds value in the outcome.  

As always, my kids are my greatest teacher.  

You won’t be surprised to hear this story about our goats has invited Mosaic into my head as well. Over two years into the launch of Mosaic, the company is now firmly established and continues to grow through new tools, strong partnerships, and intentional processes. I’ll be honest: I’m really proud of myself. The picture of Mosaic as a company continues to bring the pieces together. 

As Mosaic moves forward, my original why has been top of mind. Why did I want to create this business?  

It goes back to people for me.  

I believe people can and need to be empowered by their personal finances. For so long, I just kept meeting people in my circles who were so overwhelmed by finances. They just didn’t know where to start or how. I wanted to create a solution, a path to guide people on their financial journey, and to be empowered by their finances.  

Because here’s the simple truth: if we’re empowered, we can make choices that move us forward towards our goals in life. 

We all come to finances with different stories, with different backgrounds, with varied perspectives. However, we are all bombarded with so much information, opportunity, and just plain noise. From my experience with people just like you, I know that investments in particular can feel overwhelming and confusing. 

What would it be like if, instead, we… 

  • saw our finances as approachable?  
  • understood where we were currently at? 
  • could dream for ourselves and with our families? 

When it all feels like a muddle, how do we get started? 

The answer, of course, is at the beginning.

“Where’s the beginning?” you might ask. That, my dear friends, is why I started Mosaic. I wanted to create a launch pad, a “Start Here,” a checkbox for #1 on the list to help younger adults have a place to hit Go.  

With Mosaic, we show you how to start at the beginning and then take it one step at a time. We help make your finances approachable by understanding where you’re at and empowering you to move forward on your financial journey, with guidance, education, and usable tools. Like Sally with Spice, it’s about knowing what’s important to you, what you value most, and consistently showing up to meet those goals. It’s about making a choice to prioritize your financial picture so your future can be what you want it to be.  

Your homework: If you haven’t started building your financial mosaic, or you’re just tiptoeing down the beginner path, take a few minutes this week to evaluate understanding your own background and your own why. Clearly knowing what you want makes it that much easier to take the first step towards it.


The opinions expressed herein are those of Anna Nelson and are subject to change without notice. This material is not financial advice or an offer to sell any product. Forward-looking statements cannot be guaranteed. This document may contain certain information that constitutes “forward-looking statements” which can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “may,” “expect,” “will,” “hope,” “forecast,” “intend,” “target,” “believe,” and/or comparable terminology. No assurance, representation, or warranty is made by any person that any of Anna Nelson’s assumptions, expectations, objectives, and/or goals will be achieved. Nothing contained in this document may be relied upon as a guarantee, promise, assurance, or representation as to the future. Anna Nelson is an investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training.