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, October 15, 2012

Lunch with the sheep

Autumn is in full swing here.  After a full weekend of pouring rain, we ended up with a soggy 3-4 inches!  After the first full day of rain, fog set in along with a hush across the landscape.  The smell of leaves, the colors, the warmth of the fog were all a wonderful and refreshing experience after a summer of blazing sun and 100 degree heat.  I decided to work a bit on the end-of-summer garden cleanup, only to discover after pulling (hard!) on some weeds and things, that the ground was so desperately in need of moisture, that 2 inches of rain barely sunk in more than in inch!  Other areas saw plain run-off, but where the water could sink in, it barely made it past the surface!  Something to keep in mind as we approach freezing.  Obviously, the tree roots did not get what they need yet!
 Fun little pumpkins!

Most of the harvest is in now.  We ended up with more than a dozen of these little Sweet Lightning pumpkins, and they are now all over the house!  What a cute way to make the house seasonal, bright and cozy.
A perk of the work!

When you knock yourself out all day, chasing all the things you have to accomplish in a day, it's nice to take a few moments for a peaceful lunch with the sheep!  Looking out my window, across the bird feeder and lawn, I have the ewes set up to graze on fresh grass.  They love the sugar maple leaves that blow around, and are experts at raking for me!  All I have to do is put them there, and they'll happily work on yard cleanup.  As I eat my lunch, this is the view I enjoy.  Peace.  The work stops for a moment, the day slows down, my feet can rest.  At one point, Minty sees me through the window and baas sweetly to me.  Claire contentedly chews her cud, standing so squarely on her large frame.  Hazel shakes herself off more, after being out in the good soaking rain the last two days.  Maewyn and Mona are competing for a delicious spot of grass together.  Suddenly, the day's pressures fade as I watch what they are doing.  Their fleeces are all fluffy now as they dry off.  The white sheep look really white again, and the black sheep look really black.  As they graze along, it's hard to convince myself that I have to get up and get going again!  How special it is, and what a great perk of the work, to have the sheep join me for lunch.

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