A Tribute to Blake: Well today was the day I have been dreading for quite a while. It was time to say goodbye to my old friend Blake. What a wonderful ram he has been here at Maybelle Farm for the past 14 years. I have thanked Jeri and Robert so many times for picking him out for us. He was so handsome and gentle, a very sweet old man that I adored. I have been putting this off as he had gotten so old and feeble, but knew today was the day to say farewell. This is the part of farming I really dread. It's a double loss as I had to put down my sweet Arnold. He was born blind after a very difficult birth which also resulted in some brain damage. I called the Vet crying to say I thought he was blind and wouldn't be able to survive with the flock. Stephen said to put a collar with a bell it on Okra, Arnold's mother, and he would learn to follow the sound and be fine. He was right. They had their own stall, their own pasture and their own shed. He was such a sweet boy and gave me some of the most beautiful cream Shetland wool. Farewell my dear, sweet friends. I will always remember you both with a smile.
Rowan modeling a new hat that I made!
Hello again from Maybelle Farm. Its Sunday Nov. 25 and Thanksgiving is over and everyone is stuffed and staying inside because it's now very cold here in Southern Vermont. Thanksgiving Day was very nice but very busy. I cooked a turkey, made stuffing, Gilfeather turnip, gravy ,apple pie, raspberry pie, chocolate pie and an apricot/cranberry tart. We went to my sister Bev's house Thanksgiving in the afternoon. Darcy, Rowan and Declan came to dinner with us. It was a very relaxing day but I certainly was ready for bed that night. We have had some snow flurries and I guess its time to think winter.....ugh! Time to plug in the heater buckets and get out my long-johns! I would rather stay in the house by my lovely soapstone stove, curled up with a good book but farm life doesn't allow that! Its a nice idea but won't happen.
My cousin Angela came to the farm last week and helped me skirt 16 fleeces to take to Battenkill Fiber Mill. I did two more today and tomorrow Jonathan and I will take all 18 fleeces to be processed into yarn. It's so nice to get that many bags of fleece moved out of the barn. I still have a lot more to skirt but at least I'm making a dent in the pile of bags. I'm teaching a Fiber Class at the Newbrook Elementary School in Newfane on Monday afternoons and tomorrow the students will learn needlefelting. We are going to make either a santa or a snowman.
Last Sunday my niece Deb went with my sister Bev and I to the Saratoga Mall. We had a wonderful lunch at Ruby Tuesday's then shopped for awhile. Next we went to the Casino for a little fun for Bev's birthday! We didn't win anything but had lots of fun. We were home by about 7:30 p.m. and had a great day.
One of my very special sheep "Arwyn" has been sick. The Vet took some blood to check for several different things. He gave her a shot of Thiamine and some gastroguard paste. He said she could have an ulcer because she wouldn't eat. I had to give her a thiamine shot three times a day and the gastro paste twice a day. She is doing much better now and the bloodwork didn't show anything. Thank goodness, she is doing so much better! Next at the farm is deciding who will go in with Thistle (one ram) and who will go in with Custer (white ram) for breeding this year. I'm planning to put Colby, Snowflake and possibly Star in with Custer. I will put Winnie and Lyra in with Thistle.
Well I need to go do some work and then off to bed. An early morning to get to Greenwich,NY with the fleeces. So-long from Maybelle MaMa.
Hello from Maybelle Farm on Thursday Nov. 1st. I'm adding pictures from Halloween night and you can see the spooks that came to get candy at my house. We had over 30 children visit for some candy and lots of cute costumes. It's the first time I've been home to pass out candy in a very long time. We now have way too much candy left in this house, so it needs a new home before I undo all the work I've done at Weight Watchers and eat all the leftover goodies! I cannot believe its Nov. 1st! This morning I set up 4 rolls of portable fence to move sheep into some beautiful grazing. It certainly helps out the hay situation and the sheep are much more happy to graze.
Oct. 11th was the last time I wrote and so much has happened here at the farm. My niece Deb's husband K.B. arrived with a trailer load of hay (163 bales) of first cut hay. Bill Hoos arrived with 25 bales of 1st cut hay too, so I now feel better to have that much hay in the barn. I will need more but this is a good start. One of my very favorite sheep (Arwyn) was sick a week ago with possibly a touch of pneumonia but she is doing so much better now. My old Blake is still hanging in there and is out grazing today. I think that my little Oakley (ram lamb) will be going to Sandwich, N.H. next week. I can the move his two little buddies to their new area with a large shed and winter area. There is a lot of work ahead to get ready for winter but I know it will all be done soon.
I taught my first after school fiber class at the Jamaica Elem. School yesterday. Its K-2 and they were very interested and did a good job. I love to teach about sheep and fiber. Next Monday I do the first Fiber Class at the Newfane Elem. School for grades 3-4. I hope to work this weekend at the Fiber Studio and get a lot of things put away from vending on Columbus Day weekend. I will have Olivia help me put away things and then we can make a lot of kits and roving packets. There is so much to do and I just feel like I can't keep up with everything. Once I'm not moving sheep around in portable, I will have more time to work with fiber. I want to skirt a lot of wool and have it made into yarn.
Well I have to get busy making things for the Christmas Craft show in Wilmington on Dec. 8th. All the items sold there have to be handmade so I'm a needlefelting fool at the moment. I'm also felting a hat and making Christmas tree ornaments. Oh yes, we were so very lucky here at the farm as far as Hurricaine Sandy...........no damage.
So-long from Maybelle MaMa
Kathleen - Farm Partner, Flock Shepherdess and great storyteller and (occasionally) Darcy - Farm partner, business "manager" and current web designer.