Monday, March 23, 2009

Fiber for now

"Clean sheets" in the sheepfold; Browning checking out the "maternity ward" in the back corner.

This afternoon my farrier/shearer came to give Russell his pedicure and shear the two boys; he also crutched Dinah and Brava (we determined that Inky really didn't need it so the old gal escaped manhandling). Yesterday afternoon Rick helped me "change the sheets" in the fold, so with the crutching, everything is finally ready for lambing. Not a moment too soon, either, from the looks of Dinah's udder! Troy predicted lambs tonight; we'll see how accurate his "forecast" is.

Back to the boys. You can see father and son to the rear in the top photo still sporting their fleeces, and "naked" but in good flesh below. Browning is so dark - and has corrugation lines in his hide like his sire (click to biggify). I stashed the two bags of fresh fiber in the tack room for now, but need to find something to use as a skirting table quickly so I can get a sample of Browning's fleece mailed. Anyone interested in Braveheart's?
There has been no time for spinning lately, but I've still got my fingers in fiber.I managed to get the 8 oz. alpaca skein washed and dried after Rick's mom left, and will deliver it to the alpaca farm owner tomorrow. Also, I'm knitting a Baby Surprise Jacket out of Red Heart acrylic (below) as a shower gift for a new baby at church, and plan to knit a matching cap to go with it. While I really like the colors of this yarn for a boy, the acrylic is making my alpaca-spoilt fingertips nearly faint from its harshness. From now on, I'm sticking to softer acrylic "baby yarn" for these things (maybe superwash wool or nice cotton for those special babies whose families I am close to; I firmly believe in machine-washable baby clothes).

Speaking of nice cotton, Allison of Supercrafty.com was given 20 lbs. of mill ends by one of her suppliers, so she made up toddler hat kits and offered them for the minimal cost of shipping to those willing to knit them for charity. I ordered four kits (I see she now has a two-kit limit), and plan to donate the resulting hats to Doernbecher Children's Hospital in Portland. Look for the offer in the upper right corner of her blog.

That's it for now at . . .

6 comments:

MiniKat said...

Will be checking in for any lamb-news first thing in the morning. :-)

melanie said...

Ordered my kits, dear sister...

Kara said...

I think I am ALMOST as excited to see your Shetland lambs as mine, I'll be checking in often to see if any have arrived.

Dave said...

Franna said we had our first Shetland lambs this morning!!! Hope she posts something soon as I am at work and unable to run out and see them :(

d2cmom said...

What is "crutching"? I have goats and horses but know nothing of sheep.

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Crutching (my shearer calls it "tagging") is when you shear off the wool around their backside and udder so that they don't get all gunked up with lambing fluids and the lambs can find the teats.