Monthly Archives: February 2018

2018
02/24

Category:
farming
quilts
sheep
Tutorial

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Delectable mountain tutorial

I’m not sure if this is more for me or you.  The delectable mountain tutorial  was a dry run before I actually cut out my pieces for the quilt.

I started with 8 1/2″ squares cut on the diagonal.  In this case I used the same fabric for the light color in each of my blocks.  Sew them together and square them up.   This I found to be the most crucial step, because somehow when I sewed those large triangles, they didn’t always come out square.  So I squared to 8″.  (the rest of these photos is using my practice piece)I put 2 of these new squares together with sides reversed and matching the diagonal line, then cut the 8″ pieces into 4 -2″ pieces and switched the two outside pieces and then the two inside pieces so they now look like this.   Because you have cut two of these squares, one is the reverse of the other and can be put together like thisto complete your mountain.  If you have trouble visualizing this, you might want to make two squares and try it out first.   It makes more sense once you have done it.

NEWS ITEM:   Meet Paco and Pepita, our latest additions

She is white, but she is fresh and not yet dried in this photo.

2018
02/22

Category:
farming
Life
quilts
sheep

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Kaarsten, Kristie, and a new start

Meet Kaarsten and Kristie, our two newest family members.

 

 

 

 

 

Here are Petunia and Pepe’, our first two who were not expected to survive.   Looks like they are doing well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our frozen wonderland has made me long for the sewing machine and a new quilt start.   Really, I had run out of projects? – no, not really.   Just a creative need.

 

 

 

 

 

This batch of fat quarters has been hanging around the sewing studio.   I have no idea where they came from or when.   They are not a grouping that I would have chosen, so they must have chosen me.   They needed a purpose and so they are becoming mountains.

 

 

 

 

I have cut triangles from 8 of these pieces and sewn them together ready to square them up and cut again.  Tomorrow, I’ll show you how they are going together.

 

 

2018
02/20

Category:
farming
Life

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Essentials

Essentials are all that are happening here, right now.   Do you remember when you were a new mother and the baby demanded what seemed like all your time?   Right now, that’s how I feel as I hand feed these triplet lambs.  I feed 2, diaper, warm the bottle, run up to the barn and feed the one still with mother as she has no milk.    Come back to the house and sweep or nap, throw a load in the washer or dryer, or cook.   And some days, the grocery store calls my name.   But not much else gets done.   We are up to 4 hour intervals, day and night, so there is hope.   In another week, we should be up to 6 hours and who knows, eventually life may go back to being normal.  Thanks for being patient through all of  this.

2018
02/19

Category:
farming
Life
quilts
sheep

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Spool Souffle Flimsy

I grabbed  some minutes here and there this week and then an hour to finish the spool soufflé flimsy, which measures 62 x 68″.    I’d love to get it quilted before the end of the month, but that will take some real time, which I may or may not get.

The wee ones take much of my time, but they are also a lot of fun and the diapers make it possible for them to have more freedom to follow us around.  This photo was when they had full tummies and were tired.

2018
02/18

Category:
Garden
Life
sheep

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Snow day and Esther

Looks like winter has arrived today with a lovely snow day.  The forecast is for more this week.   The biggest problem with snow is when one has to go out into it several times a day.   However, it is beautiful.

Queen Esther arrived wearing a lovely white crown.   She is posing with her mother Estelle behind her.  She gives us the count of 5 ewe lambs with 3 ram lambs.

Here are the two being raised in the house, complete with Mickey Mouse diapers.  They love following us around, but when tired, quickly go back to their bed.

One variety of tomatoes, peppers, cauliflower, and cabbage are up enough to transplant into individual pots.  I forgot to buy beets, so they aren’t started.  And I want to get some other tomatoes going.  It’s all a matter of time and space.   I planted snow peas and sweet peas today.  Fortunately as soon as they are up, the cold snap should be over and they can go into the hoop house to grow.

 

2018
02/16

Category:
Knitting
Life

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Stem cell therapy

No photos, however, we spent the day at Seattle Stem Cell clinic, getting questions answered on both sides concerning  therapy.   DH has decided to participate in the self funded studies.  He will go in for the draw on March 22 and stay there for a three hours until they are able to do the lab work and inject the cells back into his body.   I don’t fully understand their numbers when they say it is 60-80% effect, -seems like a big range – but one is plied with so much information, it’s difficult to think of all the questions.  They did say that for diseases like this that are a downhill progression, they have found that a booster each year is extremely helpful.   They have found stem cell therapy very effective for balance, coordination, mental slowness tremors, and other Parkinsonian effects which I have now forgotten.   It will take 4-6 months after the procedure to see results.  We decided it was worth trying as there is no physical downside.

The usual 65 minute drive home took 2.5 hours in the rain on a Friday afternoon.   I must remember no more Fridays in Seattle, but I took the first appointment they could work us in.  (And if our offspring are reading this – we are spending your inheritance as a trade-off for having your father around longer and healthier.)   We are on the research side of this and not only do we want the help, but we want others to be able to get the help as well.   This disease now affects 1% of the population and is becoming apparent at a younger age.    I will keep you posted as we learn more.

For those of you who were interested when I showed socks made from Felic yarn,   Knitpicks has some Felici sock yarn on sale for 30% off.

And now I’m off to get some rest before the next lamb feeding.

 

Shabbat Shalom to each of you.

2018
02/14

Category:
Life
sheep

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Lambs, lambs, lambs

12.05 this morning I received a text from the neighbor.   “triplets”  in my sleepiness, it took a minute then I responded with “in the barn?”.   Her response:   “in the pasture”   We had just sheared anyone bagging up, so what was this.   We thought she was 3-4 weeks away.  Time to drag myself out of bed and up to the barn.   Neighbor is a night owl and a shepherd.   She usually gets home from her barn in the wee hours of the morning, however, she was early this morning and was taking her garbage out for pick up when she heard a wee little “baa”.

One of our older mothers had preemies and they were at death’s door in the 24 degree weather.   She bundled them and took them to the barn from where she texted me.  We did not believe the one salvageable and another was a question.  The larger male, we thought we could save.   They were so cold and rag doll-like that I took the smallest and put inside my coat next to my nightie and just held him there while she dried off the other two and we managed a plan. 

We took them first to her house where she has a border collie who has raised several new lambs plus an electric blanket to keep them warm.   Shee licked them all over like a mother and then between us we had enough ingredients to come up with an emergency formula for colostrum.   The smallest one, was much warmer now but still very floppy.  Each was given some milk and then we brought them over to our house where we have more room and wouldn’t be stumbling over the babies.   So every hour for the first day, they get fed.  (I’m tired).   Then the second day, we can start lengthening that out.    At 5 this morning, I felt the biggest one would be okay with mom.  I took him up to the barn and she was so happy and was taking care of him, but still no milk.   So the plan has been that he is large enough to get him formula every 2 hours and the smaller ones are still on an hourly basis.  All three are now standing and walking around, and sucking on their own.   So though something could still go wrong, we are feeling good about having 2 white boys and one colored ewe alive.

At noon, when I went up to feed the little boy, I saw that the ewe we expected to go first was in labor and only one foot was presented.   I immediately texted the neighbor who came over (she has been working with sheep for many years).  She came and righted the little one, so she could be born.   And the second one slipped right out about 10 minutes later.   There are now 3 new ewe lambs and 2 ram lambs.  Happy Valentines Day  

If I miss a post or two, it is these many feedings taking their toll on my time and energy.  (and we are expecting another birth in the next 2-4 days.

2018
02/14

Category:
farming
sheep

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New family

This new family joined us this morning.   Mom was not expected to birth this earlytherefore, did not get sheared on Sunday.  My friend is taking off the excess wool so that the babies can more easily nurse.   Another boy and another girl. I almost think they should have Valentine type names.   I am getting very good at 1/2 naps.   We are now at 3 hour intervals between feedings day and night.   It does remind me of the sleepless nights when our children were babies.

2018
02/12

Category:
sheep

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Catching my breath and cleaning

20 bags of fleeces to go through.  It was so fun to view each of them under the sun bleached tips as they were sheared.   Today,  I’m catching my breath, taking the day more slowly, and cleaning up.  The fleeces are nearly all at the house now (warmer here), the garbage has been taken care of and the stalls are also cleaner with fresh hay for all to eat.

 I thought we might have a birth, but that is probably waiting until I am fast asleep, though I prefer to be there in case of trouble.  It’s difficult to tell when babies are coming and if I wait up – well you know about the “watched pot”.   My friend was sure that one of her ewes was going to pop each day for 2 weeks as she was so big, but in the meantime two of her other ewes not as big decided to deliver some surprises.   One just doesn’t know until it happens.

2018
02/11

Category:
Life
sheep

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Feb 2018 Shearing day

 

Feb 2018  Shearing day set up and ready to go

I know we did more than 20 sheep, but I don’t know how many and don’t have enough energy to count the fleeces.   So tomorrow…….

Pierre is so good at shearing them, that many just lay there very relaxed so he can get on with their spa day.    (this one may birth in the next day or two)

In contrast, this is one with the vet.   Just to make life interesting, this girl had a prolapsed vagina.   If not treated immediately, it meant death.   So the vet (in green shirt) came out, put everything back inside her and we hope for the best.  This was not fun for anyone because she had to be held upside down to shove this large ball of protrusion back inside her body.  It is stitched in to hold it hopefully until the baby arrives and then she will not be bred again.   She is a good family pet prospect as she has beautiful wool and will be useful for that.

Yes, I was so busy that I forgot to take photos of the wool as we went along, so, they will come as we skirt it and get it ready for sale.   There are several that will be going to the fair as they are simply gorgeous.

I’ll be hitting the hay early tonight.  Tomorrow, I’ll wash sheep coats so they can be put back on and then bring the fleeces into the house for skirting and photos to advertise them.