Its been a while since my last entry, not a lot going on in January, just waiting for those lambs to grow and preparing for shearing. I've been building lambing pens, cleaning out barns and arranging things so they'll be as conveninent as possible. Since this is just our second year, I still don't have a pattern or set routine but I'm sure that will come with years of practice.
Shelves were one thing I wanted and didn't have last year. Shelves and hooks to hang things on so those were some new additions to the lambing shed. Creative uses for cattle panels emerge almost weekly, what did we do before those things?? I swear I'm going to find a use for them in the house one of these days...something to hang pots off of :)!
The temperature swings this winter have been a roller coaster ride. Very little snow, just an inch or 2 here and there. Certainly nothing like last winter. Yesterday it was in the 50's and today back in the low 30's and thats been typical this season. Can't complain! At least it allows the hoses to thaw so I can water regularly. There were a few weeks that stayed in the sub-freezing temps and those days were real challenges for watering. My intention had been to haul water from the hydrant on the house in a barrel in the wagon with the lawn mower. Silly me. The lawnmower wouldn't start and now has 2 flat tires and the spigot on the house froze up solid. The only thing that ended up working was filling buckets in the kitchen sink and carrying them to the sheep and horses. Sheep don't drink that much but the horses definitely do. With all the snow last winter, there wasn't as much need for watering the sheep but horses always need fresh water.
We sheared the ewes last Monday (Presidents Day) as well as vaccinated and wormed them. With all their wool off, its much easier to see their condition and I have to say, they look good. I thought Amy & Lemara were fat but they're really not. Poor old Ruthie is skinny but I don't think she's bred so she'll get to stay in with the preggies and eat as much as she wants. So we are ready for the games to begin! My guess is Julia and Cybil will be first, they just look ready, really ready. Our starting date is February 26th and we look to be right on schedule. I've taken the 2nd week in March off so hopefully a few hold out until then so I can really enjoy it. I've put my order in for nice weather that week...think I'll get it?
Oh, I finished the "Roark Shawl"! I'm very pleased with how it turned out, the color is just beautiful. I ended up enjoying the pattern very much, it was a lot of fun to knit!