Sunday, August 27, 2006

Bill Eatmon

Yesterday, my friend Bill Eatmon passed away. He was surrounded by the love of his family, and passed on peacefully.

Bill was friend and partner at Sheltering Pines to my dear friend Stephen Rouse.

The loss of Bill will leave a gaping hole in many lives. He was much loved and will be sadly missed.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

A Heavy Heart

Sorry to have not updated since I got home from Michigan. I had such a GREAT time. I must have handled, touched, talked about ... close to 100 Shetlands. I learned so much. It was a blast.

But now ... a dear friend is critically ill and it is not looking good for his recovery. I am amazed at how exhausted I am just at the thought of what this man and his family are dealing with. I have to keep busy ... or I just sit and sniffle ... which accomplishes nothing.

Pray my friends ... like you have never prayed before ... for a miraculous recovery ... or for a painless, peaceful and speedy passing.



Wednesday, August 16, 2006

I'll Be Away For Five Days ... will tell ALL when I get back ... ;-)

Tomorrow morning ... hopefully at 5:00 AM, Matteo and I will head for Stephen Rouse's in Michigan.

Stephen thinks Matteo will be staying with him, since he has PAID for him and all ... but ... Matteo and I have a plan ... hehehe.

Matteo agrees with me ... five dogs are definitely NOT enough ... LOL

I will be back on Monday ... and will update my blog as soon as possible once I am back.

I have much to tell you all ... :-)

Life ... is just so very wonderful.

Exquisite Ram Lambs For Sale - The Fifth & Final

I love this ram lamb. He is not flashy like some of the others ... but he is big, square, CRIMPY, very soft ... and the most beautiful shade of mioget!

His dam is Bono Creek Cleome, who has thrown almost all modified lambs for me. The sire is WillowGarden Cliff Carlisle, a mioget gulmoget ram.

Again, this is a ram that I will stand behind 100% as a flock sire. He is, as are the others, priced to sell ... at $375.

Exquisite Ram Lambs For Sale - The Fourth

The fourth ram lamb that I have on my sale list is a blettet light emsket ram. His fleece is evenly crimpy and VERY silky soft. He is out of WillowGarden Joni Mitchel (WillowGarden Ruth Gordon and Valley Road Junior) and WillowGarden Duke Ellington.

Bred to the right ewes, this guy should throw spots, and some amazing and unique colours.

He, too, is priced to sell ... at $375.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Exquisite Ram Lambs For Sale - The Third

This little guy is one of my favourites ... WillowGarden Lima. He is a dark grey katmoget ram lamb ... out of WillowGarden Cassandra Wilson, and Valley Road Spencer. Spencer is a scurred ram, but since he carries both polled and horned (resulting in scurred for him) ... the ram is 100% horned.

He has a VERY even fleece that is soft, crimpy, and a must have for handspinners.

This is another ram that I would recommend to anyone as a flock sire. His fleece is like BUTTER!

Lima is another smaller framed ram that is also VERY correct, in every way.

This ram is priced to sell at $375.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Willow Garden Poultry Palace

Well ... here is the door from the other day ... put to use. We built a poultry palace for the six little brown egg layers that are due to arrive sometime next week. We still have to shingle it, hinge the poultry door, and fence a yard (about 35' by 20').

The 'arch' in the roof is a feature to bring true beauty and funk shoiy (sp :-) to the structure ... and also because I forgot to calculate in the effect of a centre support in the roof ... hehehe

My pigs ... who adore me and insist on 'helping' with every project that I undertake ... approved.

I feel the same way about my pigs as they do about me ... NOT ... unless THEY are thiking about how good my chops will be after being smoked ... hehehe

NOW ... I just have to skulk around at dusk and see if I can find where Anne Frank roosts at night. I have looked. I think that she knows that I am looking and has gone into the floor boards again.

Exquisite Ram Lambs For Sale - The Second

Here is the second ram lamb that is for sale ... WillowGarden Bok Choy. This little guy is out of SheltrgPines Kamelya (Cedarose Jenny and SheltrgPines Jeremy) and Duke Ellington (emsket ram out of WillowGarden Elsie Marley and WillowGarden Cary Grant).

This guy will have an intermediate fleece with wavy crimp. He is quite soft as well.

Bok is a yuglet ... flecket ... black (maybe modified) ram. There is tons of potential with this guy. I would not be afraid to recommend him as flock sire for anyone.

He is priced to sell at $375.

And remember ... if you buy ... our have bought this year ... three or more sheep from Willow Garden, there is a $50 per animal discount.

Exquisite Ram Lambs For Sale - The First

Well ... out of 46 ram lambs born here at Willow Garden this year, 32 have been culled, 9 are being retained for test breeding and further evaluation ... and five of the best are being offered for sale. Each of these rams is unique and has something wonderful to add to any flock. I'll post information over the next four days on each of these guys.

First up, we have Willow Garden Abraham Lincoln ... out of WillowGarden Janis Joplin (a Kate great grand-daughter) and Wind Water Sean O'Sullivan ( spotted katmoget ram bred by Shauna Grey).
Abe is black ... katmoget ... yuglet ... flecket ... and also likely carries the 'modifier'. He is fine boned and smaller in size, and has an exceptional fleece.
He is polite, respectful, and well grow into a truly impressive ram. He is priced to sell at $400 with health, fertility, and horns guaranteed.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Friends Coming for Anne Frank

I think I told you the story about how I ended up with just ONE chicken. I caught all of my chickens and ducks last Fall ... and they went into my freezer. I KNOW that I had all of them in crates when I went to bed ... but ... three days later, I saw Anne Frank wandering with the sheep. I figured that she had been hiding in the floor boards or the walls!

Well ... after almost a year of eating eggs from the grocery store, I have ordered six ready to lay pullets. I can't STAND store bought eggs!
Before the new girls get here, I need to build a new 'hen house'. I have WONDERFUL idea that will have a drop down front (the door pictured above), and a roof that raises. It will also be two feet off the ground so this old guy can deal with them and their eggs ... without bending over. Of course there will be LOTS of room outside for them to scratch in the dirt and eat all of the things that make their eggs so good. I'll post pictures of the new structure, when I am done with it ... :-)

Now ... if I can only find where Anne hides at night ... then I could put her in with her new friends. I can't even get CLOSE to her. She seems terrified of me. I wonder why ... hehehe

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Pigs ... We're Just Past the Half Way Point in Their Vacation at Willow Garden

Well, they are growing ... and boy are they smart!

This afternoon I was replentishing their 'mud hole' for them. One of them decided that she wanted more water in their bathing trough ... soooo ... she picked up the hose in her mouth, and put it in the trough!! I watched her do it ... and then she looked at me ... and I swear that she smiled.

Unbelievable ... hehehe

Donkey Oatey likes them, of course, because they are on the other side of the fence ... and he likes anything that is on the other side of a fence. Pretty cute to see them nose to nose, I wanna tell yah.

This pig is the small one, the Bosley Pig, for my neighbours.

My kids' pig sure loved the mud hole today, even if her sister wanted the water in the trough.

Pigs though, are just pigs!!! Every time one of them sits in a puddle, in this position, it just seems to force gas out ... and we have to listen to the bubbles in the puddle!

Pigs!! aren't they!?!?


Friday, August 11, 2006

Nick ... and the NASSA AGM

Poor Nick, one of my LGDs, has a nasty big gash where the back of the ear meets the neck ... and I do mean nasty! It has been cleaned, shaved, disinfected, cleaned and disinfected three times per day, treated with anti itch meds, treated with antibbiotics, and also given HUGE doses of hugs (in spite of Nick's smell ... :-).

BUT ... I was to leave for the AGM on Sunday morning ... and I can't do it. His wound is drying up and starting to scab over ... but until it is well on its way to healing ... I am staying home. I'll miss seeing lots of friends there ... and the presentations ... but ... this is Nick ... and he relies on me in the same way that I rely on him. I have to be here for him. He is always here for me, and has never let me down.

I am hoping that it looks better by next Thursday. If it does, I'll head for MFF ... :-)

In spite of the fact that Nick was just coming out from the effects of a tranquilizer (the only way that my Vet can treat him due to his size and strength ... he weighs close to 200 lb ... Nick, not the Vet) ... he was out there with his sheep.
In the picture above, you can see the shaved portion of the neck and the redness of the gash. Below ... he just looks regal and proud ... to be with his sheep.
I LOVE this dog, and couldn't begin to do what I do here without the help of Nick, and his partner in the job, Kayla. Can I ever hug them enough?


Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Kitten Has a Name

Well ... I have had a few people ask what I decided to name the kitten that I thought was gone ... and then just showed up.

I had great suggestions from lots people who read my blog ... but the one that tickled my fancy ... and suited the little guy the best ... IMHO ... was 'Sir Prize'. Not sure who suggested it ... but ... THANK YOU!

Meet 'Sir' ... in a photo taken with my new camera ... at full 12X optical zoom ... :-)

He surely is cute isn't he! I think that I will spay his mother and then find a 'lady friend' for him as we need kittens born here ... and his off spring would be VERY cute. Kittens born here stick around, eat rats, and make 'peace' with the dogs.

For Nancy K ... and Dream ... ;-)

I hope that all of you who follow this blog do take a moment to check out my friend Nancy Krohn's blog. It is always fun ... great pictures ... and a daily comment from a lamb named Dream.

Today when I was out taking pictures with my new camera ... which has 12X zoom ... I managed to get some GREAT shots of Rosemary, a near perfect moorit HST ewe lamb. The picture made me think of Dream ... sooooo Nancy ... Rosemary says, "Can Dream come out and play?"

PS to anyone who lives anywhere near me ... this 12X optical zoom is AWESOME!! Close those blinds ... hehehe

Hay Storage ... ;-)

Well ... these two garages arrived about the same time that my camera died. We finished putting the last one up today. These 'buildings' are 10' X 20' ... and I have lined them with hog panels ... anchored them to six t-posts driven three feet into the ground, and have fastened them to fences as well. They had better NOT blow away!

My hope is to keep 175 small bales of hay, and 25 bales of straw in each one. I'll feed the hay when breeding groups are set up, at lambing time, and when the weather is just too miserable to get big round bales into the main paddock.

And speaking of breeding groups ... could you not see a couple of small groups in the front on each of these 'buildings'? ... maybe Kirkton and Hetherington in one?

hehehe ... life is good!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

My Camera Has Died ... but ... Pics Of My BFL Ewe Lamb Coming This Fall

Well ... my digital camera entered another dimension a few days ago. Seems to see everything VERY different from the way that I see it. So ... I had no pictures to post ... and who wants to read my blog without new pictures!!?

I have a new camera that I purchased today ... and in the mean time, you can look at pictures of Hetherington, the Bluefaced Leiceister ewe lamb coming here this fall with Kirkton. She is a DOLL!!

There is a chance that two more ewes and a ram may come as well ... but I will need to get a Provinsial Sales Tax rebate before that can happen. Seems that sales of sheep are too close to expenditures for sheep.

I WILL be adding ten ewes/ ewe lambs to my sales list after August 20th. That might just help. We will see.

If I could just have a guarantee that next year will NOT be the drought of last year!


Anyway ... this is Hetherington ... as seen front, side, mid rib wool, and hind leg wool.

I'm going to like this girl, I think

Saturday, August 05, 2006

A Link To Great Artwork ... IMHO ... :-)

My partner, Gene, has found another place on the web to display some of his varied artwork. Check it out when you have a minute.

I have added a permanent link on the side bar.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Blue Faced Leicester Ram Coming to Willow Garden, likely this Fall

Well ... this is my newest purchase ... Beechtree Kirkton ... from Beechtree farm in Michigan. He has already been named 'Kirkton', but that works for me! Sounds sort of ... important ... :-)
This is mid side fleece.

Below is mid hind leg.
I LOVE the fleece on these sheep ... and their disposition. We'll see how I like them after a year. I am looking at one white ewe lamb to import with Kirkton this Fall ... and if it goes well ... maybe one or two more next summer. I will be anxious to hear comments about this new venture from my hand spinner friends.

Old Friends Coming Home ... and bringing relatives ... :-)

In January, 2005, I sold six bred ewes and a ram to people in New Brunswick ... . The ewes were lambed out here before shipping, and their lambs were quite wonderful. Recently, I noticed these sheep on a sale page for this farm ... and I wanted two of them back for my AI venture. There were also two spotted beauties, a mother and daughter, out of Kate's line ... and we all know how I feel about Kate and her family!

I made an offer ... and bought all four of them. Above is DWR Astrild, out of Dailley Erato (Kate daughter) and Dailley Kismet.
This one is SheltrgPines Athena, who gave me an emsket ewe lamb out of Kismet lines. I think she'll do well as an AI ewe. Gene always had a special place in his heart for her ... after holding her head while I pulled her first lamb!
And here is Dailley Erato. I couldn't believe that I had sold this girl ... a Dailley ewe, and a Kate daughter. But ... she is back and will be bred AI this Fall.
Did I say that I love spotted sheep? Well, I do! This little doll is an Astrild daughter out of SheltrgPines Jacob Two Too. Can you imagine her lamb next Spring, out of Wind Water Aspagus ('Gus')?

Life is soooo very good ... :-)

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Ram Shed

Well, we got the sheeting on the roof of the new ram shed ... although this picture was taken BEFORE that happened. I wanted a place to keep my 'big boys' where they can be away from the annoying 'little boys'. This shed is pretty solid, and should be a good place for 'the guys' to hang out.

My neighbour across the road, who used to be a roofer, is coming over on Saturday morning to help put up the shingles on this shed ... and on 'Kate's House'. Aren't neighbours great ... :-)

I think 'the boys' will be happy with their new space. They have, however, asked for a beer fridge ... and I'm not sure which corner of the shed to put it in ... hehehe

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Kate's House

Dailley Kate, our 13 year old moorit ewe (above), will be retired from breeding. She has poor vision ... and I was going to put her down this summer ... but she thought otherwise and has rallied. So she needed a more permanent home ... one that can also be a quaranteen space as well if needed.

So today, Gene and I built a 'Kate House'. We are going to paint it the same colour as the new front doors and the shutters on the front of the house. Here, you see Matt ... the kid across the road who allows me to do all of this ... painting doors and shutters and you can see the colour.

By the way ... there is NO truth to the rumour that Matt had a certain finger raised to me just before I took this picture ... hehehe
And here it is ... minus the 'Garnet' paint and the grey green shingles. They may happen tomorrow. The temperature reached close to 94 degrees here today, without considering the humidity. We have accomplished a lot in the past seven days ... but we are all being more careful after my bout over the weekend with sunstroke/heat stroke!
Kate's House is 8 feet by 8 feet ... and might also serve as a place to keep my polled Shetland ram, and my new BFL ram.