Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Just like Christmas morning

We have "holly"...
...and the joy and wonder on a child's face at the sight of a new toy!My sister's fiance is packing up his stuff to move to Texas (after getting married in Hereford, they are moving to the Dallas area for my sister's new job) and ran across his childhood electric train set. He asked us if Brian would like it. Would Brian LIKE it? Brian has been obsessed with his dad's old set that doesn't work, and we KNEW he would be thrilled to have a set of his own. Kristine brought it up with her after her last visit in Medford, and it's been in hiding until Rick had time to set it up and make sure it ran before springing the big surprise on Brian. He set it up last night; we had a happy little boy this morning!

Back to Holly:After spending Monday in the weaning/quarantine stall while the mud from another good rain dried some, I put her and the little boys out in the weaning/quarantine paddock this morning. After exploring the boundaries (and letting Jackson sniff where dogs like to sniff), she set to eating hay. You'll notice from the arrangement of bodies that she has quickly taken her place as boss ewe!

Later, while sitting at my computer near the open window, I heard Holly's voice much too close. I dashed out and sure enough, she was out of the quarantine paddock and fraternizing through the fence with the three ewes! It was my fault; I forget to latch the gate of the paddock. I think this makes my record 100% for failing to keep new sheep completely quarantined for the duration. (Apparently I need a steady diet of humble pie.) She was also COVERED with little burrs from the weeds around the manure pile; sigh. I was thinking about shearing her so I could start fresh with her fleece covered (she came with a fair amount of VM, and has a very strong, rank lanolin smell); the burrs may be the deciding factor. I just wish I had the equipment to shear her myself, since she is used to a milking stand and I hate to have the old girl manhandled in the usual fashion by my farrier/shearer. Anyway, she's back in with the boys for the rest of the quarantine period and I pray there are no ill effects from the very brief contact with the rest of the girls.

That's it for now at . . .

13 comments:

Wrensong Farm said...

Congratulations to Brian on his new train set! I hate to admit it but I haven't been the greatest at quarantining my animals either, so far I haven't had a problem....I need to get more strict before I have to pay a price! The good thing is I generally buy from quality breeders that keep their animals healthy! :)

Lois said...

Burrs....the bane of my existence! I have been logging burdock for a while now. But still the sheep manage to find them...sigh.

After Holly settles in, you might try doing the shearing by hand. I have just sheared over several ewes using a halter and lead, and either handshears or Fiscar scissors (but if she is used to the stand, that is even better). Good thing there aren't too many that need it. My time: about 90 minutes/sheep....I think that isn't too bad; THEY don't necessarily agree ;-)

Tammy said...

Hi Michelle,
We call it 'beggar-lice' here, and even though I tromped through the field, it seems I missed a whole PATCH of it the sheep have since found. Argh. I agree with Lois--if she is used to a stand or being tied, and her wool is kinda trashy already, I'd just use a big, sharp pair of fiskar scissors and do the trick. It really won't take that long, I just did Rouen in about a half hour or so. Of course I wasn't trying to save any of the wool, as it was matted from the rise, so that helped speed it along.
Tammy

Pine Pod Farm said...

Congrats to Brian on his train set, I remember mine well which still have and nice pictures!

~*~Amy~*~

Franna said...

I second - or maybe that's third - the idea of using Fiskars on Holly. My time is about what Lois said, 90 minutes or so, but it's quiet and gives me a lot of hands on with the sheep. You might find that you like it! One thing I found is that if they're fairly quiet, then start hopping and struggling, you might let them down to go potty(!), then back up settled again - one of the drawbacks to taking more time for shearing.
We haven't been really consistent with quarantining either - sometimes better than other times. Once we kept the new sheep well separated, and pink eye spread through the flock anyhow. Go figure.
- Franna
...argh. Burdock and thistles.

Nancy K. said...

Merry Christmas!

I bought the 'mini' hand shears through one of the farm supply catalogs and I love them. MUCH better than trying to do it with a scissors ~ which caused blisters within minutes!

Pamela said...

She is absolutely gorgeous! Such beautiful eyes.

Pamela said...

Can you tell me how to get a feed from your blog? I really enjoy it and would like to keep up with it. I couldn't find the little RSS or Atom clicky thing.

Thanks!

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Since I haven't figured out how to get a feed from anyone else's blog, I don't have a clue how to help you. Sorry! Anyone else know?

Pamela said...

If *think* this will work. If you go to where you add things to your blog, one of the basic "gadgets" is an RSS feed. There's also the Atomic Post feed. (I have no idea what the difference is.) If you add these to your blog, people can get the feed by clicking on them.

I use Explorer 7 and to get my feeds, I open up the favorite's side window (it looks like a star) and there they are! You can click on the ones you haven't read and they will show up for you.

I hope this helps and hope even more that it's right. Maybe someone who knows more than me (it's not at all difficult to know more than me about this!) will chime in.

Kara said...

Congrats to you and Brian! Holly is a beauty! You are going to love to spin that jet black fleece. I had mine added to a black alpaca fleece to make a 5 pound run at the mill and I can't wait to get my hands on it!

Dave said...

Woo Hoo Brian got a train that works !!! I still have one as well, plus all my Hot Wheels and models... But as they say, growing older is mandatory, but growing up is optional :-)

Sharon said...

Look at Brian's face - it's Christmas in August. What a wonderful find.