Thursday, April 14, 2011

Check out these Beauties!

Isn't she pretty? This baby girl was born this afternoon to Hannah, a Cotswold cross, and Samson, a registered Cotswold. She is a big girl, much larger than several of our other lambs, and she has gorgeous tiny white curls. Mama and Daddy have two of the prettiest fleeces on the farm, so she is a real prize!

And then there is this beauty. I found this little wheel on Ravelry, and boy, is it a keeper! It is a Mathieson wheel, made in the 1970's in New Zealand. It is even signed under the treadle. I have never been able to sit down at a wheel for the first time and spin a nice single. Once I got the tension adjusted, that is just what I did! Mom tried it out and loved it, too!

I have been busy spinning and spinning (no, I am not dizzy yet), trying to get plenty of yarn done for the Spanker Creek Craft Fair in 3 weeks. If you happen to be in the Bella Vista area the first weekend in March, come see me!


Monday, April 11, 2011

Busy Weekend

We had a full weekend planned. The Lord had other ideas! First, it was off to a neighboring town high school to watch our middle child perform in a band competition. Everything was quiet at home when we left. BUT...When we returned, Big Mama was off in the corner of the sheep pen, and she was in heavy labor. Stan helped her deliver a whopper of a girl, then we watched to make sure she was going to be okay. About the time she got little girl cleaned up, she decided to live up to her name and lay down and have a son! So Big Mama blessed us with our first set of twins! All are doing fine. These Shetland/Border Leicester cross babies are up and running around before they are even dried off good! Amazing! So we got them moved to the barn and started on the day's list of things to accomplish. Middle child also had trap shooting practice and we were taking mom-in-law out to eat for her birthday. I was inside getting ready to go, and Stan called and said there was another baby on the ground! After a quick change of clothes and a mad dash out to the pasture, we found one of the most beautiful lambs I have ever seen: This little guy belongs to Nellie, a Cotswold/Merino cross. We aren't quite sure of his father, as Nellie came to us already bred. He is beautiful, coal black eyes, curly white wool, and what you can't see in the picture is that on his other side, just beside his shoulder, he has one black spot, about the size of a dime. So off to the barn with them. After middle child shot 18/25 at trap practice (whoot-whoot!) we went and stuffed ourselves on catfish and came home, half expecting to see another baby. But everyone else is still hanging in there. While Stan was changing, I headed off to the barn to play with babies while I waited. I was traipsing along, in my own little world, when low and behold, look what I nearly step on:

I don't know the proper name, but around here these are called Spreadin' Adders. The first encounter I ever had with one was years ago. I was literally 9 months pregnant. Our washer and dryer were out the back door, and down a flight of rock steps in the basement. I was waddling down the steps with full laundry basket of dirty clothes and heard something rustle in the leaves a step or two below me. Lizards were very common on those steps, so I didn't much pay attention. Then I saw it. What I thought was a copperhead, only it was the wrong color, reared up its head and spread out like a cobra and came up the steps after me. I no longer waddled. I ran full out into the house and called my husband, who was then a police officer, to come home and shoot this cobra on our back porch! He thought I was being over dramatic, until it did the same to him, right before he sent it to meet its maker. A friend at church later told us what kind of snake it was, said yes, they do spread out their heads and are well known for chasing, and then proceeded to fuss because we killed it. Seriously? Now, I leave black snakes and grass snakes alone, but any of them that can bite and send you to the hospital are better off dead. So this guy just hacked me off. He was right outside my lamb barn. I took a picture, then veered way out around him and grabbed the side handle ax out of the barn and shortened him and his life. Ugh.

Then we decided to move Ava and her baby girl back to the big pasture. This little one is precious:

She was born to two natural color parents, and she is solid white. She LOVES to be snuggled. Mama Ava is a good mama, but she isn't super attentive. So if food is involved, she forgets about baby girl, or maybe she figures that as long as she can hear her running around and hollering she is alright. So I get to hold her a lot.

Well, it is time to go out and check for new additions and let everyone out for the day. I am working hard to get lots of yarn done for the next couple of shows, and it is rainy and cloudy out, so it is the perfect day for spinning. Keep watching for pictures of new babies!