Wednesday, April 30, 2008

How could have I forgotten?

Several people have mentioned that they haven't seen too much of the cats on the blog lately. That's because they are "senior citizen" kitties and they spend most of their time sleeping.

This is one of Sinda's favorite places to sleep - or it was until something became "unacceptable" and now she won't sit up there - she's been sleeping in this spot for about three months now. Go figure - but when you are 18 years old and a cat, you pretty much can do what you want.

You see, last week in the midst of all the baby excitement, I completely forgot Sinda's birthday on the 21st.

She turned 18 - looks pretty good for an old girl - can't jump as high as she used to be able to, which, luckily keeps her off the top of the refrigerator...

She also likes to find cozy places to sleep outside, and is rather fond of sleeping in this planter box. John has watered her on several occasions.

The other occasion that passed without much fanfare was our 14th wedding anniversary on the 23rd. I made macaroni and cheese for dinner - how un-romantic is that?

Oh, well, another year of peaceful co-existance. Happy Birthday, Sinda and Happy Anniversary to The Shepherd.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Moving day - or - Out into the BIG WIDE world

It wasn't bright and sunny this afternoon, but it wasn't horrible and rainy either - The boys had lots of visitors - about 20 friends from church showed up to check out the new babies. After they were all gone and things had calmed down some, it was Moving Day. The moms were definately starting to get stir crazy in the lambing jugs and it is best move them at a time when The Shepherd can be around to watch.

Taylor and Buddy aren't too sure what's beyond those walls - Anna Dee didn't seem to be in too much of a hurry to get out after all - we had to actually go in and "shoo" them out!

Once they hit the pasture, tho, there didn't seem to be much to slow them down. Anna Dee was having a hard time keeping up with them - Boing, boing, boing - like they had springs in their little feet - back & forth, back and forth - It is a kind of joy that you don't see very often.

The aunties were all curious about what was going on in that pasture - who's out there???

Gwennie is probably the calmest that she has been in the last year. and remarkably polite to Anna Dee - hope it lasts...

Glad we have a digital camera - you know how hard it is to hit a moving target, don't you? We'll try not to drive you bonkers with pictures, but, golly isn't he cute?

Hmmph, more of those sumb sheep pictures - and not enough of me!

Don't worry, Anna Dee - Regina is used to the boys going off on their own, aren't you Regina. In fact, it's the only time you get a little piece and quiet!

HB, Taylor and Buddy say thank you to all of the "hooman beans" who came out to see them today. Hope you all have a great week!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Cute as a bug -

The celebration banners are out!

Our first company stopped by this afternoon to see the new babies - Paul & Patty and our friends Curtis & Felicity, Anna & Johnny.

The tulips went all out today to welcome our visitors.

Anna Dee is much better - the vet was able to milk her out Thursday night and the boys finsihed the job - they are able to eat normally and her udder is back to normal! Thanks Dr. Mike.

While everyone's attention is on the babies, Jewell checks out Patty's handbag to see if there are any cookies - Sorry Jewell - you'll have to stick with hay.

At just two days old, HB is perky, but very mellow. We had to do a little "poop-otomy" after our guests left - as an only, he is getting a lot of rich milk and his mom hadn't been cleaning him enough, so he had a little case of pasty butt where his new poop sticks to his wool and his tail gets glued shut. Not a pretty sight to be sure. Left uncleaned, it could be very bad for him - a couple of warm, wet paper towels did the trick. He was very good about it too - didn't fuss which would have had Gwennie going for The Shepherd's knee caps!

For a first time mom, Gwennie is being very good and very protective, keeping herself between everyone and HB - can you see the spot right on the top of his head?

Neelix says: "What's the big deal, it's just another one of those vishus sheep!"

Oh, but wait til you see this little guy out in the pasture. He's going to stop traffic on the corner for sure!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Joy and sadness - all part of farming

I got home from work a little late tonight - The Shepherd was rushing around - "Listen up", he said - "Anna Dee has mastitis - and the vet can't come out - I have to take her to Lynden" (about 25 miles away) "AND , I'm pretty sure that Gwennie has gone into labor - she may have a lamb as we speak - go check on her!"

Whoa - that's a lot goin' on - so I jump out of the car, dump my purse and bags from work on the back porch and head out to the little barn where Gwennie is.

Oh, My Gosh!!!! Look what I found!

Gwennie has given us an HST ram lamb!

HST - the Holy Grail of Shetland Sheep - stands for Heads, Socks and Tail - a marking where those parts of the body are white - and he does have the white on the tip of his tail, which I guess was tucked in on these pictures. He has little Panda Eyes - His name is Marietta's "H.B." (alias, Panda Guy) (hey, you'll have to ask The Shepherd, I didn't name him...)

Man, he's cute - little panda eyes - cute, cute, cute!

So back to Anna Dee - as you can see, she has a very painful affliction here - but the boys are doing fine -

The Shepherd loaded her into our trailer and off they went to the sheep V-E-T. Our regular vet (from the same office) is back in Minnesota, but Dr. Mike did a great job and they were back in just a couple of hours.

They are both russet brown - naming is still in the works.

Of course in the mean time, the new boys thought they had been left all alone in the world, and cried and cried and cried. Which upset Regina, who couldn't quiet figure out - her boys seemed OK, who were these little twerps who were making such a ruckus?

But, unfortunately our joy was touched with sadness. Just as The Shepherd had gotten back from the vet's with Anna Dee - we thought that Gwennie was passing her afterbirth - no, there was another lamb, unfortunately stillborn - too long waiting for that first breath of life. Blossom, a beautiful white angel with a few black spots now rests beneath the cedar tree in our garden.

Joy and sadness - all part of farming...

Two more lambs at Marietta Shetlands

News Flash: Anna Dee had two lambs this a.m. - both the reddish brown color that The Shepherd was hoping for. Both ram lambs. That, he wasn't hoping for. We're four-for-four - Film at seven.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Button, button, who's got the button?

What ever happened to my mom's button jar?

I got to thinking about it yesterday after we were getting ready for church. The Shepherd asked me if his collar looked straight and mentioned that he had lost the button off it after he put his tie on.

I told him to keep the button and I would sew it back on for him. He seemed surprised - like maybe he didn't know I knew how to sew?

I remember sitting for hours and looking through the buttons in that jar. There were some pretty cool ones (like the blue flower shaped ones in this picture I snagged off of Microsoft's Clip art website.) Maybe it was that when things wore out, they would take the buttons off before they threw the clothes in the rag bag - don't want buttons on the rags - I suppose they would scratch what ever you were cleaning. Prettier pieces of fabric were reused in quilts. Don't want buttons on your quilt, I suppose, either.

Maybe it's that a lot of things don't have buttons any more - I know most all of my pants are elastic waist bands. (even the ones with buttons on them!) . Oh, well, thoughts to ponder, I suppose.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Ain't it the truth?

How does that old song go - "If you're feelin sad and lonely, call me" - Well if I'm feeling down, I just go over to I Can Has Cheeseburger and laugh at the crazy cat pics they put up. How do people come up with these things, anyhow?

humorous pictures

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The things I'll do to make a point...

Self portrait. It is APRIL 19, 2008! Any other year, it would be Easter weekend - heck it was this cold Easter weekend this year, what am I thinking? The cold, it is affecting my brain. (The Shepherd wants to know what I'm talking about - he says I wasn't outside long enough to get cold - I say The Shepherd is a blabbermouth)

As you can see, there is a cherry tree in full bloom behind me. But what is that thing on my head? (why it is my Sheepskin Tie-on Earmuff - Wool Tie-On Earmuffs - "For those who want more than an earmuff and less than a hat, this is perfect. Fashionable, yet cozy and warm. This ties under the chin or around the back of your head. One size fits all. Available Gold, Black, and White." - Best $30 I ever spent!)

Why do I look like I am dressed for the Arctic Circle? A winter coat OVER a fleece vest? Because it is COLD out - Because it is "See your breath cold" out. It is not supposed to be 36 degrees on April 19th - It's just not natural.

Ok, so I'm a wimp - HOWEVER, I should be glad that we did not have 11 inches of snow like they did down between Everett and Seattle. Yikes - Global warming, my backside... we could do with a little of that global warming here in the Pacific NW - maybe I'll email Al Gore and ask how we get on the list for a little of that warming around here... Ha, ha, ha...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Lost Generation? Maybe not...

A co-worker sent me this link to this You Tube video - it was the second place winner in an AARP contest for young people that was held last fall, called "U@50" -

The author said it was based on "the Argentinian Political Advertisement "The Truth" by RECREAR".

It gives me hope.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Not much doin'...

Occasionally as I'm out driving around, I marvel at the beautiful views of Mt. Baker that we have throughout the county. Weather permitting, The Shepherd gets to see this view every morning on his way to work.

The view changes from season to season - depending on how hot it is over the summer, she will loose almost all of her snow. It is fun, in the fall to watch the snow to start building up - almost like watching an athlete bulking up before a big race.

I often wonder what the first settlers in the area thought about our beautiful mountain. Were they compelled to try to make their way up through the hills and valleys, that of course had no roadways then - I'm thinking that it would have been a pretty hazardous trip.

These are what have burst into bloom out front
behind the Glory of the Snow and in front of the Narcissus (or is it "Narcissi" if there are lots of them?)

See the pretty blue balloons flying in our driveway? They are The Shepherd's way of telling our neighbors that there are lambs down at the end of the pasture - we normally put them out front - where they literally stop traffic on the street, but Grumpy Gwendolyn is in that pasture, so the little ones and Regina are in the pasture in the back. We are hoping the when GG has her babies, she will no longer be Grumpy and we will be able to put all the sheep together.

Hope springs eternal...

Finally I would like to extend our sympathy to several of the Shetland breeders who have lost lambs this spring. It is very sad to have one's hopes and dreams of the last 5 or six months dashed in just a very few minutes. Our hearts are with them.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Free At Last - as always - a momentous occasion

As the old spiritual goes - Free at last, Free at last, Lord Almighty, I'm Free at last. Off they go for their first look at the big wide world.

They have been christened Daniel (the little reddish one) and the other one is Lewis (don't ask).

Regina was more than happy to get outside into the warm sunny day. The boys just wanted to make sure they didn't loose track of her.

Meeting the "neighbors" - This is your auntie Pearl, boys

Don't worry, Regina, The Shepherd will give Lewis back to you all in one piece.

Daniel's wool is this yummy chocolate brown color - it would be wonderful if he stayed that color.

This little pasture didn't really afford the boys the ability to really get out there and race - but they were doing enough to keep their mom racing back and forth - she'll do that for a day or two, then, it's "oh heck, who cares what the little buggers are doing"


Friday, April 11, 2008

From the Garden

John took this pretty picture of some of the daffodils in our garden last week. The sun is supposed to be out tomorrow and Regina & the boys will get to go out and look around. Of course I'll take pictures.

Monday, April 07, 2008

They're here!

They are finally here! - Regina had two handsome and healthy baby boys this afternoon - almost dry by the time The Shepherd got home from work.

This little guy looks like a Leprecon - I think we should call him Shamus. I don't think The Shepherd agrees with me.

Uncle Neelix is very pleased with the events of the day.

Auntie Jewell doesn't care as long as she gets her hay and her pets from The Shepherd.

There are still four (we hope) more to come - Anna Dee is probably out a week or 10 days and Gwendolyn the Grumpy will be at the end of the month. Keep tuned!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Waiting, waiting, waiting

The Waiting - It's driving The Shepherd C R A Z Y!! And me, by default, I guess. Regina is confined to a "jug" tonight (for you "non- sheep" people - that is a smaller pen where the mom can bond with her babies and they are also all safe from any predator or interference from any other sheep - Like an auntie who isn't bred, but has such a strong mommy instinct that she might try to steal one of them - regardless of the fact that there is no milk in her udder - silly old girls) Regina's biggest problem is last year's lamb, Luna, who doesn't like being away from mommy and doesn't understand why she is, all of a sudden getting booted away from her. Life is tough when you're a sheep.

Anyhow - this is who we are waiting for tonight - The Shepherd took this picture yesterday - looks a little on the plump side, no?

So, here are those pictures of our place that I promised you last week - enjoy the visit - & yes, you'll be the first to know when the lambs arrive!

John says that the little blue Glory of the Snow will be taking over here soon - (click on the picture to biggify and you'll see what I mean)

I think this is one of my favorite sights on our farm - it is right inside the gate and it means I am Home! I also am in love with these two Japanese birches - they are beautiful any time of the year.

Coming down our driveway, you would be hard pressed to believe that 12 years ago there was nothing here but the house. (and one scraggly looking rhody)

The Shepherd has planted lots of daffodils - they are so cheerful this time of the year.

The "mounds" are untilled composting mounds. He plants directly in to the mounds - he'll have (from the closest to you) - one row of pumpkins, two rows of sunflowers and two rows of corn. There are also two rows of Japanese iris that are just starting to come up at the very back. It is very colorful around here in the summer!

If you biggify the picture, you'll also see the dafs that he has planted all around the perimeter of the yard.

I'd invite you to come in for tea, but I am not a very good housekeeper so it's kind of a mess right now. Too many fiber projects going at one time, plus my "stuff" - I think I could turn into one of those old ladies who filled their houses with "stuff" Aargh!

Here's the expectant daddy - still looking kind of rangy/mangy from his spring hair cut. Kind of skinny to be holding up that big rack.

Well - Work will be calling way too early in the a.m. and I promised The Shepherd that I would check on Regina before I come to bed.