Sunday, February 18, 2024

Babe Watch

Now that 'keeping an eye on the sheep' has become a rather obsessive pastime, I decided I'd better figure out the parameters of lambing season. Blog to the rescue. I recorded putting the breeding groups together on September 20, and Bijou attempted breeding Bridget right away. Gulp; that means lambing could begin any day now! I also recorded that Boop was bred several times on my birthday, which means lambing could continue into mid-April.



For the record, I'm not seeing any imminent signs of lambing; no udders are forming yet (in other words, none of them would make the cut for that infamous lifeguard crew on TV). Bridget (third photo), as always, is very woolly which obscures the view. At the least I need to trim her nether regions – or I could just shear her. The boys are all losing their throat wool, so I should check them for roo-ability. And before harvesting any fleece I need to collect fleece samples from everyone to send off for micron testing. Ah, Spring; the Shetland shepherd's busiest season!

Speaking of 'spring,' Brian has a cold (the cookies and brownies I baked for Valentine's Day probably didn't help), the horses are shedding, and my MIL's wedding is coming up in less than three weeks. The first of the daffodils (in the upper pasture) will unfurl this week, and the eggs keep coming. This morning I caught the hens during 'rush hour':

I left them to it while I took care of the horses and sheep, and when I came back, I collected two eggs and paused to video Spangle making cute noises:

I cut my latest weaving project off the loom today and knotted the fringe. I have lots more natural wool yarn for warp, but don't love what I have left of the natural dyed wool yarn for weft. I need to lay it all out and ponder my options; I might overdye some.

I've also started – gasp! – a second spinning project. Blame Ravelry; the Jenkins group is spinning variations of the 2024 Color of the Year, "Peach Fuzz," and I found this Inglenook "Pink Grapefruit" Polwarth in my stash. Starting this means I won't get my 'denim' project spun and plied by the end of the month, but I'm hoping to finish the singles.

In other crafting news, a nearby shop is advertising a wire-wrapping class on March 3. I really want to get back to wire-wrapping my beach-combing finds but desperately need a refresher, so I signed up in hopes the teacher is open to helping me with my technique rather than just the planned pendant.

My creative juices haven't run this strong in a long time; it's rather exciting. What's next – pulling out my oil paints, or getting back to stained glass???

Wonders never cease at . . .


thecrazysheeplady said...

Fun! :-D

Michelle said...

I think so, Sara!

Leigh said...

Excellent chicken photos! Do you have approximate due dates for the lambs? The pink roving is lovely; such a pretty yarn!

Michelle said...

Leigh, what I posted is as approximate as it gets – any time from now to mid-April!

A :-) said...

Babies!! I always enjoy your blog even more as lambing gears up :-) Love the Peach (maybe because peach is the color of my (endometrial) cancer ribbon).

FullyFleeced said...

that's a long time to be on lamb watch- how exciting, tho! wishing you many beautiful, healthy lambs :)

Jeanne said...

I've read and enjoyed this post several times. Thanks so much for sharing.
Your latest rug is SO lovely! That design really appeals to me.

And that Pink Grapefruit roving is really special. I'm anxious to see it as you work with it.

I really like the chicken pictures, and I'm looking forward to the new lambies!

Take care!

Jeanne said...

P.S. I'm interested in your wire wrapping class. I'd like to see how its done.

Florida Farm Girl said...

I'm excited to hear that your creative juices are flowing. It's time for some fun stuff, not just what "has to" be done. You go, girlfriend.

Michelle said...

Lambs certainly giving me lots of blog fodder, A!

Thanks, Denise, for the wishes. Lots of anticipation about what the pairings will produce!

Jeanne, I'm sure you and I both could learn a lot about wire-wrapping by looking up and watching YouTube videos on it, but when I saw this very local class advertised, I couldn't resist. I'll just have to make time to keep working at it to keep up my skills this time.

Sue, I do make time for fun stuff like dog agility class and working with my hot little mare, but making time for 'art' has been difficult since my son came along. I thought I'd get back to it when he left home, but since there's no indication of that happening anytime soon, I began to think I might die first. Thanks for the encouragement!