Sunday, October 31, 2010

Bitsy & Betsy

We had not slept well last night, listening for Halloween intruders. It is a sad fact that we have to guard our horned animals this time of year. We'd already decided not to try to make it to church today, knowing we would be worn out. I made coffee, fiddled around and did my weekly check of the Asheville craigslist. I don't check it often as it is not our local area. An ad for a pair of Border Leicester X Cotswold sheep jumped out at me, especially as it seemed the sheep had to find a new home because the owners were not able to maintain their farm. I sent a quick inquiry. Several hours later we returned from Mars Hill with Bitsy & Betsy, 3 year old sisters. They are healthy but quite chubby. They'd been short on grass but on a heavy grain diet so had put on some weight. They've each got a pretty fleece and we'll adjust their diet to take off a little of that fat. They are tentatively friendly and I'm sure we'll get along just fine.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Chilly Morning

I really can't say for sure if Bud is eating as the sun comes up or if he's just hiding his face in the hay bale to stay warm. He's obviously wearing his best fur coat but perhaps he had a chilly nose.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Artists at Work

I walked out to gather the early duck eggs and came across these two hens carefully sculpting a cantaloupe. The funniest thing is that they would take a peck or two and then stand back, seemingly evaluating their work. I was impressed - wouldn't mind having it as a pretty porcelain conversation piece. But I am sure it is consumed by now.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Shearing Shetlands

The Shetland sheep are great except that they have one little glitch. They are an heritage/primitive breed that have something called a "rise". There is a point where they begin to naturally shed out their old fleece & begin to grow a new one. The older fleece becomes matted and the break where the new fleece is growing in makes shearing a challenge. Basically, rather than just shearing them in the spring like the other sheep, we have to watch their fleece to see when the ideal time is to shear. And it looked like that time was now for some of the Shetlands. Al got seven of them shorn this weekend. This one was the most petite of them all making the task a little difficult but it all went off without any nicks or cuts.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Getting a little finished

I have just finished tagging more hand painted yarn for tomorrow's Saturday Market. I love the dyeing process but always seem to put off the reskeining and tagging until the very last minute. Now to wash up the rest of the day's eggs and all will be ready.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

New Hay

Everyone got new round bales in their pastures today. Gates is always so thrilled when Al drops the bale. He celebrates by tearing at the bale with his horns and flipping the hay up into the air and over onto his back. Zeb, Gates' companion, got right down to eating and skipped the usual silliness.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Heading Home

Mom is getting around a bit better on her brand new knee so I am heading back to the farm tomorrow morning. A friend had asked me to take pictures of colorful leaves. For fun, I took a picture of the lovely red of fall poison ivy. That is usually because I accidentally take home a good case of it after doing some serious yard work for Mom. Looks like this time I may have avoided it!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Getting a little bit done

I knitted the scarf in the waiting room while Mom was in surgery and then did the scarf while sitting with her on the back porch at home. I'm so glad I grabbed all my knitting needles and had a car full of yarn when I came up to Ohio!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Goat Pile

It didn't take the goats long to conquer this pile of round bales. They spent the first day mostly nibbling around the edges but before long were vying for the top spot.