Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fleeces & Brown on My Mind

I am thinking again. Sometimes this is for the best, sometimes it gets me in trouble, and sometimes I should rethink what I was thinking. Nonetheless, I this is what I am thinking.

After shearing this year I have concluded a few things: First I love my Cotswold fleeces and I have to learn how to spin ASAP because I know I will appreciate them even more. Second, the best fleeces from my Shetlands are honestly off my 3 fawn kat ewes ( a mom & her twin daughters). Third, the moorit/mioget fleeces are not too bad, soft but not long staples but with a bit more selectively breedings, I think progress will be made. Fourth, I am not happy with my black fleeces, yuck. The only ones that I really like and are nice are coming off of Jed. and these fleeces are off the gullie yearling ewes. Fifth, the spotted sheep fleeces are disappointing for me. Maybe its just me not knowing all the different types of fleeces very well. The softness is there, but not the staple length or just one full fleece, too many pieces. Is that an issue with the double fleeced sheep? The gullie fleeces all came off so nice and smooth and same with the kat ewes.

Pictured above Harvest Thyme Pumpkin, a 2 yr old. (Harvest Thyme Harriet (blk smirslet) x Lil'Country Jedidiah). She had a beautiful fleece going into winter then it started to roo out around late Feb.

This is her fleece above. It is very soft and crimped underneath but has a harsh, hair like outer coat. Any suggestions on this for quality? Be honest, I am a strong woman:)

Above is a 2 yr old mioget ewe (Windswept Savannah Grace (mioget) x Jed.). Her fleece came off very nicely but of course I forgot to get a pic of it and its buried in one of the fleece bags!

This fleece is off of one of the fawn kat ewes. It is such a pretty fleece. This ewe, however, has been rated by me as Flake #1 out in the barn. She is just out there but she is definitely a poll carrier as she has produced 2 full polled boys & one small scurred boy. She has only produced boys so this Fall I am going to breed her to Ripton in hopes of getting a polled or small scurred ram lamb with a nice spotted fleece.........of course this is what I am thinking and thinking does not necessarily mean I will get it. There is always hope:)

This little stinker is her full polled boy from last year. He is a wether now, nice little fleece that came off of him. I am thinking he might be mioget? Maybe light moorit?
So I am thinking of taking all of my shades of brown fleeces and having them done into yarn. A few people have expressed interest in finding a nice, natural colored brown yarn. Any opinions or suggestions out there? I have never had yarn done so I would love to hear any helpful
feedback ( like is a longer staple needed for yarn, how much is needed, and any recommend places to send it etc). Enough thinking for today, I am off to my nephew's First Communion party. More thinking tonight.

Monday, May 3, 2010

So Many Battles.......sigh.

Seriously, there is just way too much to do. There is one too many battles out in that yard. One day the grass is cut.....the next day those dead headed dandelions are standing proud just challenging me to try mowing them down for the third time so I do because they drive me insane. One day I start pulling weeds in one location, get side-tracked to another location and by the time I get back its like I never even pulled a weed out. The sheep want this, the goats want that, the horses want more fresh grass, the cats want in, the cats want out, the dogs want to go for more walks.............I just want a little more time, maybe even a little nap. I know good luck with that. Balancing my time is quite the obstacle at this time of the year.

When I stop at the store, I try to pick up a few flowers and plants instead of buying a huge amount at one time. I got a rosemary plant, bee balm, and a few flowers the other day. Of course, the next objective would to plant them right away, but that usually does not go according to plan. What does go according to plan however, is the harder I work outside, the more I notice who does not.

Moo Cat is the biggest slacker. Always taking the opportunity to find a sunny location for a nap. I am thinking I will let him have that napping place all to himself.

This is another Moo Cat napping place on the screened-in-porch. He is truly a pathetic cat. Shame on him for all those naps he takes:)

And about those chickens and their bathing places...........I need to sit down with the chicks and talk to them about bathing in public.

Okay, enough whining and complaining on my part. I need to send in the t-shirt list for next weeks Washington D.C. trip. The room list is done. I am NOT changing it again. That's another thing, getting ready for next weeks trip.....................sigh.