Thursday, January 22, 2015

Merinos Finished, Shetlands Beginning

 This Shetland ewe is a first time mother. She delivered out in one of the sheds and did a great job of drying them off. I have several Shetlands that could deliver at any moment. Their lambs are so much smaller than the Merino lambs. These two are wearing a preemie and a newborn onsie. The Merino lambs were almost all in 3 month onsies. When the snow melts, I plan to hit Goodwill for a new batch. The lambs are hard on them!
 This is a Merino ewe lamb chasing down a Shetland due to deliver any day. The lambs are opportunists and are always sniffing out new sources of milk.
 I have 11 Merino lambs. The ones still in onsies have not had their tails docked or their ears tagged. Ican still tell who they belong to if I keep their coats on. The blue stripped one is Bronze. He would not have lived, if I had not blown him dry to warm him up. He had pneumonia. He is significantly smaller than the rest, but he is now thriving.

This is a collar that I just finished. The pattern is on my uniquedesignsbykathy.etsy shop. Very easy. The yarn is what makes it so unique!

I currently have two other patterns in progress. One is a hat and the other is a crocheted snood. This winter my mind is all over the place. I have been soaking in epsom salts nightly to reduce my aches and pains - that is where I am coming up with original designs. I need time with nothing in my hands to come up with ideas. Hard to knit or spin in the bath!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Due to weather issues, I am having a lot of Internet issues. I finally managed to get some of my feathered yarns and the singles that go with them listed on my Etsy shop. I will be listing more, since I am busy designing new patterns for the feathers. I just finished a luxurious scarf/shawl in Suri alpaca with feathers. As soon as I have published the pattern, I will give you a preview.

Life on our farm is not just about the sheep and the goats. We discovered the bones and head of the beaver that was here a few years ago, so we now know what happened to him. We found this weasel last weekend dragging and tearing apart a full grown Canada Goose. We know where her nest is, so I will check it periodically. Glad that weasels can swim since the pond water has been rising.

I am always experimenting. All of these fibers were dyed with Golden Poppy. The difference in colors is the result of dyeing over a gray, a red mohair and a white mohair. The yarns will go in the shop. I am already working with the locks.

I am busy shearing the adult angora goats, now that the kids and yearlings are done. We have well heated barns, but I won't shear again until Sunday when it is warmer. 

Baby season is in full swing. All, but one, of the purebred Merinos have delivered. Then I have two weeks before everyone else can deliver. We are running the sheep and goats through the barn every week or so checking udders. Last year we put everyone in the barn. Since we are pros at running the animals through to check eyelids, it is not such a big deal to run them through for udders. The goats with the largest udders will be shorn first.

If you want to see snow pictures, head for my Unique Designs By Kathy Facebook page. As always, you can follow my Kathy Withers Facebook page, if you want to stay on top of farm events!