Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Spoke too Soon

Wouldn't you know as soon as I mentioned how the mother hen had kept all her babies safe, the very next morning our blasted neighbor dog came down and killed two of them. A third chick died later. Dang! I hate it when people don't control their dogs! I have told these people before to keep that darn thing home and yet, he's running around the neighborhood loose and they aren't even at home.

It's always eerily quiet after a dog attack. The chicks hide and stay totally silent. Most of them were hiding in trees, some flew up in the branches and some took cover inside the big blue spruce in our front yard. I had no idea how many were killed after I shooed that dog home.

I was so relieved that the mother hen made it through the ordeal with one chick at her side. After about an hour of silence, the surviving chicks slowly started peeping then began coming out of hiding. I really wish they would stay in their pen from now on because I know we can't trust the neighbors to keep their dog home.

Other than that, I've been on a creative bender. Our art ladies group is meeting on Monday mornings again and that gets the creative juices flowing again. I got out my watercolors and dabbled at some little sheep paintings. And I made some felted slippers. The cool thing about them is they are custom fitted to my feet. Felting takes a lot of elbow grease to get that wool to shrink down to size. Here's a photo of one finished slipper and another that still needed to be fulled down to size. It takes about 30 minutes of rubbing and dipping your slippered foot in water to get each one shrunk down (lots of bending over).

After experimenting with all kinds of layouts for needle felting on the slippers, I plied together two strands of handspun silk, one strand of recycled silk, and a strand of bulky yarn made with the roving used in the slippers. I cabled it and made a simple tie around the slipper which I can needle felt in. The comments from people here are to kept it simple so you can see the wet felted wool.
Thanks to all for the comments too. I wish I could post in my own comments section, but I seem to have some security blocker problem. I need to figure that out one of these days...
Garrett mentioned Eli's topline, Yes I did notice it looked bad in that photo. And yes, he is pretty plush, but I think it also has to do with how fat he's gotten lately. Here's another shot showing all three of our ram lambs. Look who has the straightest topline, it's Jake, the musket on the right. He's very nice, great fleece, horns looking very good, etc., too bad he's Ag. That's why I priced him at only $125.
Eli has the fleece type I'm breeding for, carries modified genetics, has a great back end and tail . So I'm retaining him and we'll see how he devlops.

I'm planning to use Boggart and Bombarde again this fall for my purebred Shetland breeding groups. I get a nice mix of lambs from them which can then be bred to each other. That's when I hope to see some real results.
Here's a shot of Lucy's fleece, she's the grey katmoget pictured in my last post. Unlike a lot of grey kamogets I've seen, she's very dark inside that creamy colored exterior. Unfortunately this photo isn't clear enough to really see her crimp.


And this is a shot of my white BFL ram, Dougal's fleece. This is the type of BFL fleece I love. My colored BFL ram lamb, Granite's fleece is very fine and crimpy, but it lacks the nice bouncy purls. Our natural colored BFL ewe lamb has fleece like Dougal's and our white yearling ewe has fine crimpy fleece like Granite. I will have two lines to work there too.

5 comments:

  1. Your slippers are awesome Becky! Do you have a 'pattern'?

    I am SO sorry to hear that your neighbor's dog got two of your chicks! Did you call them? I'd call the police or animal control! Thank God he didn't get any of your sheep.

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  2. becky ~

    I'm sorry to hear that there were more dogs attacking livestock. I can relate on a personal basis :)

    Sorry to hear about the loss of multiple chicks, glad that they all didn't perish.

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  3. Sorry to hear about the dog problem. I know the feeling. I don't know what Ag means. I have seen it in posts that I have read, but need some interpretation. Jake is a cool looking dude.

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  4. Hmm. I am sorry to hear about the dog and your chicks. Your slippers are really cool!

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  5. I love those BFL curls! My mom had a BFL ram for the last several years and he just threw the most awesome curls.

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