Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Take A Break

Today and tomorrow can get pretty hectic. Remember to take a break, catch your breath and enjoy.  


Eat some yummy leaves (and work a new puzzle :-).


And get a little exercise afterwards :-D. 

That's Bullwinkle leaping back to the barn.  I think he's trying to beat Biscuit and Muffin back.  Well, I know he's trying to beat them back.  I think it's because he's a little jealous of them.  Or maybe he's just enjoying the gorgeous weather the last few days.  I love that they are still side by side :-).

So much to be thankful for!


Monday, November 20, 2017

Keeping Honest Dogs Honest

Or keeping a puppy from doing a little freelance electrical work behind the barn ;-).  At least the first water heater wasn't plugged in yet when she "experimented".


Even though June is as big as a moose, she's actually not quite 8 months old.  Still a puppy.  The lightweight plastic tube covering the electric cord of the original tank heater was no match for her moose sized teeth.  Saint Tim's heavy duty metal and wire contraption ought to keep her honest...and safe.

Winter is almost here.  We are ready.  Or at least I am.  Saint Tim's already dreaming of summer ;-).


Thursday, November 16, 2017

Throwback Thursday

Since I've officially made through the first half of the November/Wovember Instagram Challenge, I decided maybe I'd try for a Throwback Thursday. Seems like I could have pulled off a Wordless Wednesday or Walk With Me Wednesday post too, but, well, you know...  Guess what this is!


I've been looking off and on for this since we moved here...in 2003.  I knew I'd never throw these things away on purpose, but I was starting to lose hope.  Anyone who's seen our basement however can attest that there is no telling what an incredible amount of junk treasures are down there.

I packed these baby things away back in early 1993.  I packed them away just as keepsakes to treasure...never dreaming I'd ever raise another bottle lamb again.   This was Punkin's bottle and coat, made from an old jacket of mine.  

:-)


Monday, November 13, 2017

Hank And June Flip Book

I remember heading out to the barn for evening chores the first miserably wet and cold evening after we got Hank.  I really wasn't sure how I felt about him being outside in that.  I knew how much Iris and Tilly enjoy sleeping in the warm kitchen, but I'd been told not to worry.  That livestock guardian dogs were different.  

I looked in all of Hank's normal barn spots and he was nowhere to be found.  I looked around the corner of the barn thinking he was hiding out in one of the horse stalls.  No.  I knew it.  He was miserable and had run away from home...and then I spotted him.  He was out in one of the paddocks running laps with a big happy grin on his face.  

Hank and I actually prefer cold weather :-).  Running laps and bouncing around playing chase and catch me became our nightly routine that winter.  During the hot summer we both played let's just sit out on the hill after the sun starts to set, but when winter returned, the games resumed.

Evening seems to be a common time for animals to play.  I've watched rabbits and foxes and skunks come to life as the sun starts to set.  Big fields of lambs race around jumping on and off round bales or tree stumps until their mouths are open, panting.  Hank and June get completely silly, too.  

I'm not sure if it's just the playing time of day or if this is some sort of evening warm up, but this is their nightly routine.  They are good about playing away from the flock, but I have to really watch if I'm out there so I don't get run over.  Luckily I can hear them coming.  If you didn't know they were best friends... :-o


















June being here has been really good for Hank.  If you'd have asked me a month ago if Hank was "old" I'd have said no.  But as soon as we put a young dog next to him...we both had to admit Hank is getting old :-/.  A month of Camp June has put a little fresh pep in his step.

Remember June's second night here?  When they divided up the work and she took the front field and Hank stayed out back?  Now when they feel like there is a threat, Hank works the smaller front field and June works the entire back of the farm.  She can get to the fence line next to Stella's house in just a matter of seconds! 

There was some action the other night and June raced up the hill while Hank and I stayed with the flock at the barn.  Once everything had settled back down I gave both dogs a chew bone and they sat side by side out back, prepared for the rest of the night.   


They are a good team. It's been fascinating watching them work together.  If we'd have had any idea how much Hank would love June, we'd have gotten a second dog much sooner.  Or maybe he wouldn't have loved anyone but this June.  Hank and June were Tim's grandparents.  In case you were wondering how they got their names :-).

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A huge thank you for all the calendar and farm shop orders over the weekend!!!  Everything should go out this afternoon.  If you sent an email and I haven't responded, let me know.


Friday, November 10, 2017

Once Again, The Calendar Post...Finally

The "finally" parts seems to be a trend with the calendars...every year.  This year I thought I was really on top of the game.  Postage had gone up yet again, so I steeled myself to try and send as many First Class as I could this year and ordered two cases of plain padded mailers.  I took some test calendars to the post office earlier this week...

Several years ago Tim had an "old" printer that did a really nice job printing the photo cards and calendars.  It was obsolete though and they stopped servicing it so he had to get a new machine.  I, of course, liked the old machine better.  I thought the quality of the photos last year wasn't as good with the new "improved" machine.

This year Tim experimented with some different styles of paper.  There are probably as many different papers as there are different breeds of sheep.  Different types, weights, finishes, coatings...  This year's calendars are printed using a matte finish, clay coated paper.  Don't ask me to explain a clay coated paper; I just know (now) that it's heavier.  The calendars look very nice though and that's the important part :-).


The 2018 Farm and Lamb Camp calendars!


This might be my all time favorite Buddy picture.  There's so much "Buddy" here - is messy wool, his big mouth yelling at me, his ear fuzz curls (my favorite part of Buddy) with one ear forward and one ear back.  The quintessential Buddy portrait.


The almost quintessential Comby picture.  "Well, at least I'm not asleep this year."


Lots of Hank this year.


And Biscuit.


And Muffin, Mrs. Pepperpot, B. Willard, Hickory and T-Bone and  Maisie (of course ;-).


The lambs in the Lamb Camp calendars are as sweet as ever.  





Leaping lambs.


Sleeping lambs.


And even a Christmas lamb.

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We'll do it basically like we do every year.  Equinox Farm calendars are still $12.50 each and the Lamb Camp calendars are $10.00. Shipping (to the US) will run anywhere from $4.50 to $7.20 depending on weight and distance.  Shipping overseas is usually not as expensive as I fear.  I'm happy to get a quote for you. Likewise for Canada.

If you'd like to order one (or more), just send me an email with what you'd like and your shipping address. I'll send everything out with an invoice and a return envelope and you can just drop a check in the mail upon receipt.  Checks are preferred, but we can also handle credit cards if that's easiest.

There are also Lamb Camp note cardsChristmas cardsdrop spindle kits, Biscuit and Muffin ornamentsMaisie OrneriesMug Shot mugsMy Favorite Sheep canvas totesa little wool...in the Farm Shop if you are interested.   And there are also have two cases of padded mailers in case anyone needs to ship a bunch of lightweight items ;-).

As always, we truly thank you for your support. Your purchases help pay for hay, grain, bedding, shearing, vet bills...and even cookies ;-).  


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One person who won't need to purchase a calendar is Karen B.  She won the calendar from 20's giveaway earlier this week :-).  Drop me an email with your address and I'll get that shipped right out.  Depending on where you live, I might even get to use one of the plain mailers ;-D.



Monday, November 6, 2017

The Black Sheep Of The Serta Family

Well, this post started out as "Hey, we needed a new mattress and because of all of 20's great friendship and hard work here and Serta's sponsorship of the National Sheepdog Finals, we bought a Serta!" and I took some pictures of 20 checking out the new mattress...





Then I thought, you know I should probably re-tell 20's story for anyone who's joined in since 2011 and doesn't know who he is and how he got here. I looked back and found the original post and...HOLY COW...look how young 20 looks!


20 looks like a little(ish ;-) lamb!


This is the earliest picture we have of 20.  Well, lots of 20s.  Our 20 is the 20 on the left.  He had just been won by Debbie Bailey and one of her fabulous dogs, Huck, at the 2010 National Sheepdog FinalsSerta, being a major sponsor of the finals, had awarded these big(ish ;-) sheep to the top finishers.  

Debbie gifted 20 to me for my birthday the following year and, as they say, the rest is history.  I thought I'd share a couple of my favorite 20 posts, but I couldn't narrow it down to just a few.  If you follow his "label" from the list on the right (here is a link as well), you can read back through the years.  He sure has been busy!

So why is 20 the "black sheep of the Serta family"?  Well, in looking up links for this post I was reminded that the Serta Counting Sheep are actually trying to discourage folks from buying Serta mattresses.  And even though Serta did call for a one day truce on National Hug a Sheep Day, I was concerned that 20 might not want to be publicly acknowledged for actually helping sell a mattress.


"I had to babysit Baaxter Black.  I'm not scared of a giant national corporation!"

Those posts with Baby B and 20 are definitely among my favorites.  I also love the posts where he is helping me with my weaving or fixing (multiple) knitting mistakes.  The interview from the Iknitarod Trail was fun, too, as are some of the interesting trips we've taken over the years. 

What is your/are your favorite 20 stories?  Let him know in the comments and he'll draw a winner for a 2018 calendar later this week.  The mailing envelopes got here yesterday, so we are about ready to start offering them for sale.  I just need to get some postage information.  Maybe 20 can help with that today.

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For the record, other than having the honor of living and working with 20 and buying a Serta mattress last week, I have no ties to Serta and am not being paid for any sort of endorsement.  I do however want to express my appreciation for their support of the National Sheepdog Finals!  And, yes, the mattress is very comfortable :-).



Friday, November 3, 2017

2017 Hug A Sheep Day Party - Wrap Up

Amy took so many great pictures.  Here are some more favorites:


Looking at this picture you'd think Biscuit was Mrs. Pepperpot's natural baby and Muffin was the adopted kid.  While both Pepperpot and Biscuit enjoyed eating cookies, Muffin LOVED Hug a Sheep Day.  


I've had a couple questions about the dog biscuits.  Even though Chocula and Murphy would probably eat dog biscuits, those were for Hank, June, Kate and Tilly/Weaslie ;-).


And while it wasn't actually quite this dark and ominous, it was that cold.


But the Wool House was toasty and there was a heated contest with the Lego Sheep Shearing game including some people (not pictured here) later in the day who may or may not have cheated a bit ;-).


Back in the barn.  Neither Biscuit or Pepperpot volunteered for a second or third tour of duty, but Muffin happily marched back in.  Little kids?  Who might have cookies?  No problem!


Two sweet little girls...and Woody, trying to steal their cookies!


Woody!


It looks like Woody and Murphy know they are being upstaged by Miss Personality ;-).


Tilly and Kate:  "Is it over?"


Nope, a couple more fun friends braved the cold.




Poor grumpy Spud didn't want to have his picture taken.  That beautiful yarn is his.  He could have shown a little more enthusiasm :-o.  Kids...


All in all it turned out to be a very nice day to hug some sheep.  Feed some sheep some cookies.  Get mugged by sheep for cookies.  Or just watch sheep out in the field.  A huge thank you to everyone who came out and a super huge thank you to Amy for taking so many fun pictures for everyone who had to hug/feed/get mugged vicariously :-).

Remember - every day is a great day to hug a sheep!


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