Shetland Sheep: Rich in History, Rich in Textiles

Shetland Sheep: Rich in History, Rich in Textiles! Our farm mission is to enjoy and promote the wonderful diversity of the Shetland breed by fully utilizing to the best of our ability all they have to offer historically. We believe the best preservation and management of this breed includes it's full spectrum of history. We encourage old and new shepherds alike to join in the fun by engaging in fiber arts, especially spinning and knitting, as this breed is so intimately linked with those aspects of the arts.

Monday, May 3, 2010

...ring, ring...

So remember the funeral? It was three hours away from our farm and there was no way I'd miss it. But only two of my ewes were done lambing, with two more to go. I started planning for fill ins to take care of everyone while we were gone. I was amazed at how many people said they would help us!! We had a whole crew, each specializing in their favorite area. A huge thanks goes out to everyone!!! We are so lucky to have all of you as friends/neighbors!! But how do you ask someone to manage lambing ewes?!? As the days ticked down to departure, I worriedly waited....c'mon girls! Nothing. So DH said he'd stay behind...had lots of work needing to get done that was time-sensitive anyway. Nobody would probably lamb while I was gone for those few hours, right? On my last check out to the barn, all was normal. (Remember Gwennie!?)

So off I went. The funeral and everything with it went smoothly, sadly. I was (still am) sad, but all went great. No urgent ringing of my phone. So we stopped for fast food an hour from the farm on Sunday, when I noticed there were FIVE just made calls, all right after each other on my phone!! Oh boy! My phone had not rung out loud; ONCE!!! Yep!!! Lambs are faasssst cannnnn you getttttt hereereerererere!! We jumped back in the vehicle, dripping lettuce and melting ice cream along the way. We got down the road a few minutes, when DH calls again..."What does this mean??"....ring, ring "Is this supposed to be happening?? How close are you?".....ring ring "IT"S OUT...A GIRL!".....ring ring "Um, what does this mean??"....ring ring "Should the cord be three feet long??...OK, I'll try it...are you sure???"....ring ring "Nothing's happening, now what do I do???"....ring ring "Do girls have horn buds??"....ring ring "He's nursing!"....ring ring "I THINK THERE'S ANOTHER ONE COMING!!!!"....ring ring "How close are you???" (my passengers are getting very pale.)....ring ring "Oh! I think another one's coming out!!! HOW FAR ARE YOUUU!!! (two minutes!! I'm just around the corner!!) (Note: Passenger controls phone for driver!!)

Meet Wheely Wooly Cosmo (yes, a ram), born at 6:00pm Sunday night, day after the funeral, with my dear, dear DH as the head shepherd (Who never imagined such a thing!! :) Cosmo may be fawn or musket as he matures.

...and shy little Wheely Wooly Wink, also a little ram, born at 6:40pm! Wink was born a dark moorit color with a pinkish tongue, so I don't know for sure what color he will "be".
Their mom tried to hold out for me! She sent me off to the funeral with a "There, will be ok. I'll wait for you." And what an excellent mom she was, continuously talking to her lambs, so gentle and attentive.

Less than two days later, Mona, my last ewe gave me the most gorgeous little ram lamb I could have hoped for! Meet Wheely Wooly Lerwick!
He has Wooly Bear's twinkling expression, a deep gorgeous black woolcoat (and a black tongue), and the softest, finest, waviest fleece dense and thick and cushy that is perfectly what the standard calls for, and excellent conformation with a beautiful topline!! This little guy has it all! He is best friends with Gracie and has revealed his sire's wonderful temperment to boot! We are very pleased indeed!!

What a time it has been; sorrow and joy, death and life, with adjustments to be made inside the house and out. Memories abound, of gatherings, reminsicing, contrasted with excitement and bounding races. I hope you can enjoy this sun-filled moment in a field of yellow as Lerwick plays grown up and Cosmo (in back) attempts to bring out a smile!


  1. Hi Amy,

    I'm glad your first lambing season went well for you! Gracie looks the same as her dam did when she was a lamb.Nice.

    Wink will probably turn musket (brown grey.)

    Have fun with your babies!


  2. Dear Wooly Bear,

    It looks like you have done an excellent job as a first-time dad. Way to go! However, as a ewe myself I would be negligent if I did not congratulate all those ewes for a job well done. From a Corriedale perspective those lambs sure do look small, but then even I, Nanoo Nanoo, a diminutive ewe, am probably bigger than you are. Best wishes to your nice lady shepherd and her DH who is now also in the shepherd fraternity. The grumpy old guy also says to say "Hi" and "Job well done".
    Nanoo Nanoo

  3. Dear Nanoo Nanoo,

    Indeed we are small sheep, just like the Shetland ponies and Shetland Sheep dogs on those small islands. You should hear the little baas coming from my lambs! They sound like the chipmunks of sheep. :) I get to see them springing about as they head out to pasture some days. They are really cute! I have to say, I feel pretty good about it all. My shepherds said to send back thanks to your kind shepherd. You know, he doesn't seem grumpy or old at all...

    Wooly Bear