Monday, March 21, 2011

Just Checking In

Not a lot to blog about lately, although we have been very busy. We are almost daily dyeing yarn and roving, in preparation for our first fiber show - Wisconsin Spin-In - Pewaukee, WI at the Country Springs Hotel - April 7 - 9 - click the link for more information. We are Hearthside Fibers - look for us if you are there. We're on schedule for product, I think we have just about everything we THINK we need - of course, that list could be different than what we find we actually DO need, come the weekend of the show! Just so you have something to look at in this post, here are some of our yarns - I think these are the fingering weight highland wool that we will be selling.

Yep, after studying the closer shot, I have identified these correctly.
In other news, we sheared the sheep (or rather, Roger sheared the sheep) last Wednesday. Only a few glitches this year, starting with the day we moved the half of the sheep that weren't already in our barn. The majority of the sheep and goats moved fairly easily - three of our Jacobs, though decided they were not coming with us. We tried enticing them into the barn with grain - not successful. In fact, one of them leaped over the fence, ran around the goat pasture, then decided it did not, in fact, want to run away to the neighbor's. So she leaped in with the goats, decided that wasn't right, leaped back out and finally made her way back to her Jacob buddies and leaped back in with them. At that point, we decided they could stay put and we left them where they were. I am again trying to train them to the grain bucket, so maybe, if they are bred, we can reunite them with the rest of their flock here in our barn, where we are equipped for lambing. But, as I said, the rest of the sheep and goats were fairly cooperative and the rest of the move went fairly well, in spite of the fact that the farm is a sea of mud and a fairly large pickup truck pulling a good sized livestock trailer filled with many animals does have a tendency to get stuck in said mud. But, in the end, all of the animals got into the barn and, although the truck and trailer are very muddy, they are not stuck. Must see the glass as half full. (By the way, our Nigerian dwarf goats were the easiest to move - they did not come over for shearing, but after, in preparation for kidding in a few weeks - they followed the grain bucket right onto the trailer and hopped right off when they got to their destination - I sure wish the sheep would behave that well.)
The day of shearing went smoothly - except for the two Shetlands that managed to squeeze through the fence and escape - I'm not mentioning any names, but Lavender and Maia still look awfully woolly! I will most likely throw (well, not literally) them up on the fitting stand and shear them with the hand shears in a few weeks. Maybe if I wait long enough, they'll roo for me. By the way, to my customers - the reserved fleeces have been skirted and those customers have been notified. The remaining fleeces will most likely not be skirted for a bit, as we prepare for Spin-In - but as soon as I get the new web site up and running and fleeces skirted and made ready for sale, those of you on our customer email list will be getting an email.
Lambing/kidding does not start here until mid-April - many new ewes and does this year, so it could get interesting. Fortunately, the "veterans" are all good moms and, barring any unforeseen circumstances, shouldn't cause us any headaches. I hope the new girls all do a good job, too.
And, for a parting shot - our washer died quite awhile ago - and our dryer was making an unearthly screeching noise every time we turned it on, so we finally took the time to replace them. Fuzzball thinks the new dryer is grand!