Monday, June 29, 2009

The Three Musketeers

Speaking of the realities of life with animals – I must remember that these creatures have all day and night to come up with ways to foil my best laid plans. Today was masterminded by the Three Musketeers – the three black Mini Cheviot – Babydoll crosses. Three days ago I lured the sheep into a chain link dog kennel I had set up months ago as a pre-shearing pen. All the sheep went in and then one by one I released all but the Three Musketeers. It worked beautifully. So they were officially weaned and their mommas wandered off oblivious to their cries. Today, Abby (who is probably on this list now) came out to pick up the little darlings. I took the day off of work, got up at 5, and busted my butt all morning doing things that I can’t really do with three kids (human) crawling all over me. I was exhausted and filthy by 11, so I showered and changed. I spent the next hour tidying the garage until Abby arrived. Everything went fine – some basic sheep talk and I was happy that they would have a great home. Abby had her pickup with a topper, so I tossed Jazzmin up there. Okay, so these lambs are much heavier than they look! And I think Abby ended up getting kicked in the face, but she locked the lamb in and we went back for the next one. This time, Abby just opened the window of the topper and I hoisted Thorn up over the tailgate – and the Jazzmin flew out of the truck and bolted for the sheep fold! Inspired, Chrysanthemum bashed the lower part of the kennel gate and busted out as well. Now there are two wildly scared lambs that are 400 ft away from the truck. Down a rather steep hill. Did I mention that these lambs are heavy? I mean, they look like sweet little puff balls, but they are really made of lead! Chasing, carrying, dragging… And I was dead on my feet before any of this even started. Oh NOT the impression I was hoping to make on the lambs new mom.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Getting Started

Okay, so I'm always a bit behind the times... but I've finally fallen into the blogging world. Our little piece of heaven is in the Loess Hills of Iowa. And tomorrow is a big day for us as our first lambs will be leaving our home to start a flock for their new family. Thorn, Chryanthemum, and Jazzmin will be going to Sugar Creek Farm. That will put us at six sheep in our little flock.

We're half way through the year and we still have a lot planned. We'll be putting up some fencing and new shelters for the sheep. And once the sheep are moved, we'll modify one of the existing sheep pens for the chickens. We also have a couple dozen pine trees that are suffering from pine wilt and at least half of them really must go before winter. Okay, so maybe that doesn't sound like much... but since we both work day jobs, have three children, and I'm going to school at night it's going to keep us busy!