The camera got squished at our ice skating performance, so we have no way of seeing what we're photographing. One day soon I hope to get a replacement and start blogging more often. But for now I'm too busy with soccer. In the top photo, if you look closely you'll see Jemima wearing a soccer cone around her neck. She gets lots of stuff around her neck. The next photo is when the girls popped them in the rain water containers. They loved it!
If you're on Facebook with me, you've heard me whining about my two broken lawnmowers. When I went out to start fixing them I had an idea. I'll use my hungry Dexters (I didn't get hay because my truck is blocked by the van with the flat tire whose lugnuts I can't loosen, and besides, the truck has a dead battery)as lawn mowers. Mr. B is always too skinny this time of year, so his help was enlisted as well. They're actually mowing pretty fast!
While we were at church learning about patience, the long awaited birth of Cotton's child occurred. We thought she'd have at least two since she's part Finn sheep, but this is the entire bundle of joy. She's a ewe lamb, at least!
Shirley doesn't appear to be expecting at all.
She's muddy because Cotton delivered her on nice soft dirt. I'm so proud of momma Cotton, what a terrific job she did!
What I really need is a good farm dog. A dog who will jump in and make himself useful when he sees a need. What I don't need is a dog who fraternizes with the enemy, inviting them into the van for a wild party when they get loose.
Baby bunnies on Providence Farm are what's up! After soccer, I took the girls to get cinnamon rolls. Instead, we got five baby bunnies. Originally we were going to get one bunny per girl. Then I decided to get one as well, (mine is black with white paws- could anyone resist a black bunny with white paws?) Finally it was decided that Daddy would never be able to survive the deprivation if we didn't get one for him as well. So we have five baby bunnies. (Daddy, your bunny is Peter, the brown one.)
If you enlarge the top photo, you can see Laura, #14, shaking hands at the end of an exciting game. Katie, wearing white socks, also had an exciting game on a different field. Today was fun for the kids and exhausting for the grown ups. Cheering takes a lot of emotional energy!
The girls and I have great hopes of mimicking the self sufficient pioneers and turning our sheep into yarn. We'll need to purchase hand carders and either repair or replace our spinning wheel, which hasn't been in use since before I had Becky.
In descending order, here's the evolution of our yarn dream. First, Shirley gets a partial shearing each day. Next, the wool goes into a storage container. Then, it gets gently washed with detergent to clean off dirt and some lanolin.
Wouldn't it be amazing (and unlikely) if I posted us dying, carding, and spinning this clean wool?
Last week, I saw a guitar for sale at the local farm supply store. (Who needs civilization when you can get soccer apparel, musical instruments, baby poultry, and rhubarb all at one convenient location?) I mentioned my find to my guitar playing doctor, and he told me it was over priced. He said he had bought his son a guitar for half that price. I asked where, and he told me Baine's book store in Appomattox. I said I didn't know the book store carried guitars, so he explained that they took it down from the wall and sold it to him. Today, as I was passing Baine's, I stopped in to inquire about half priced guitars hanging on the wall, feeling that perhaps my doctor is unscrupulous and was playing a practical joke on me. But I'm happy to report that his character is in line with what you'd expect in a country doctor, and I'm now the proud owner of a guitar whose former residence was the wall at Baine's books. This is a video about 5 minutes after opening it. I think someone is a natural!
Grandfather came all the way from Texas to make our little private road passable. Gravel should be here tomorrow. Just in time for the big rain on Thursday. I'm not sure if I'll be able to adjust to being able to use the road in rain.
Here's the best little heifer ever born, Precious! For some reason I'm never carrying the camera when she's looking photogenic. But when I went out to get this, she woke up from her nap and struck a pose before running to her mom, Elizabeth (in the background.) One of the best things about Precious' birth is that Lizzy lets us milk her. We can walk up to her in the field and just milk. Sadly, she doesn't have much left over after Presh has had her fill. I'd like to put mom and baby cow in the pen and feed mom grain so she can produce more, but I have two sheep in there right now. One is being imprisoned so I can see her lamb. The other is being imprisoned so I don't have to catch her again to shear her.
Cotton is expecting a baby! Or more likely babies. And the weather has been in the upper 80s, suddenly. So instead of waiting till next week for the Amish boy to shear her, Becky and I did it. Well, we did 3/4 of it anyway. We had wanted to save the wool (see the handy dandy wool storage unit on the wall of the barn?) for cleaning, carding, and spinning, but I'm not sure that will happen. I was going to buy hand carders today so we could get a start on our project, but they're $60. If I were confident that my shearing skills would improve enough to get consistently usable fleeces, I would make the investment, but most of the time I just cut wildly, trying to get finished as quickly as possible. I still have two sheep to go, so maybe practice will make perfect. If I wash and card this wool, I'll post the little I know about fiber for you all to emulate.
The girls have been wanting little yellow ducklings for years, and this year seemed especially ripe for ducks, what with the monsoon mimicking weather. I don't like ducks. They scare me. Especially white ducks. So I made a compromise; they could have ducks if they didn't need to be brooded and they were brown. Introducing Jemima, Matilda, and Drake, the Mallard family. See the hackles up on the ladies? I didn't even know ducks had hackles.