I believe it's coming-- I see the lawn again-- spring is around the corner!
We had a heat wave last week in Minnesota-- it hit 40 degrees for several days and melted away piles and piles of snow. It did leave ice slicks on the driveways, but they'll go away soon enough. My mom said "in the old days" they tossed ashes on the driveway to melt the ice-- so I've done that. It's working-- I wonder if it will be a mess when the ice is gone.
First, I want to introduce Osmo the Finn ram. Beautiful fawn color and the mildest, sweet boy you could ever meet. These pics were after a bright white snowfall around February 1st. Click on any to "bigify" them.
Actually, all my boys are pretty sweet this winter. Most want a chin scratch and no-one charges me when I am in their yards. I like them all. Nancy H. in NY bought Little Red Oak Mullein's lamb fleece and wants to see what the big boy looks like now, so here he is at 21 months. He's BIG for shetland-- and his crimpy, silky gray fleece is so big he looks even larger.
My two horned rams, July and Mullein, shared a pen this winter. I kept them from the hornless or half-horned rams so that nobody'd get hurt- those 4 had their own yard.
Here are Osmo, the Finn, with mioget scurred-horn Shawn on the left-- lovely wool-- and little snail-scurred,gray Ulysses on the right. All sweet boys. Three different lines, so they all got some girls. Shawn's mom was (fawn) JustaLitl Sarah, dad was Little Red Oak Mullein.(Earlier, I'd said he was out of another, mioget ram. Wrong!) That tells me Mullein carries modified AND polled, since Shawn is so golden, and Ulysses is so scurred. Ulysses is Mullein's son, too, and his mom was Sheltering Pines Ferah, a moorit. Kimberwood Leonardo, my polled Shetland ram, is still in with the girls.
I worry because I don't want to send any to the butcher this summer, and I'll have to if no-one else needs their services. So anyone who wants ANY of these rams this year, talk to me, I'm reasonable. My breeding strategy, with such a small flock of ewes, is to simply move the older rams out every year and get a new one.
I had to toss in this flock picture-- the beautiful blue sky, the crisp white snow, the incredibly rusty, beat up lean to that the ewes live in all winter till lambing time. . . is actually a lovely old straw filled haven inside, with a heated water pail and Christmas lights giving light. ..
And do notice what the horned guys did to the lower left wall of that building last year. Tsk Tsk.
Monday I'm going to the Weaver's Guild (MN Textile Center) in St Paul for a fun fiber day, meeting 4 women who all have different aims for going there. So fun.
And now, for sure, Shearing day is April 5th, Palm Sunday. Sorry you church-goers, the shearer didn't have a better day available. Come to watch, help, or pick your favorite fleece.