Hold Your Loved Ones Close

This photo of Tippee and her son Damian speaks for me this Christmas.

I haven't been really in the Christmas spirit, but time marches on and so does Christmas. Tomorrow I'll go down to my mom's for dinner and stop in at the in-laws on the way home.  We are lucky that Stan's brother and sisters live pretty close to my mom so we can go to both places on the holidays.

The boys are out finishing up their shopping, they haven't even wrapped anything yet (5:45 on Christmas Eve).  They come up here to do that. :-)  They've got a puzzle started and I'll help with that tonight after I finish up a couple more batches of pizzelles.  I've got a cherry pie cooling and I put a duck in the oven for our Christmas Eve dinner.

I love duck, but I didn't want to butcher my female muscovies this fall, so I re-homed them with the promise of getting one back in the spring.  Then I spent $3.49/lb. on a duck from the grocery store.  It smells so good, I use a recipe called Shanghai Duck, it's very good, 3/4 cup soy sauce and sugar, 2 cups water, 2 cloves minced garlic, one chopped onion and the duck of course.  I'll make some wild rice to go with it.

The cherries were from the cherry tree I planted when little Bandit died, I think it was 2005.  He was such a cute lamb!  A moorit HST twin out of my favorite ewe, Cocoa.  She was pretty milky and not fully vaccinated for CDT, the grass was green and lush, and little Bandit died of overeating disease.  The only case we've ever had, and it was such a shock. I found him just minutes from death one morning.  There was nothing I could do to save him.  It was so sad to lose him, but the good thing was that Cocoa still had his twin sister Lily to raise.

Anyway, that cherry tree is producing pretty well now.  I froze the cherries I picked in July and made jelly with the juice yesterday and now this cherry pie.  Yummm!  I also made some strawberry, blackberry and raspberry jam yesterday.  It's good to get all those berries out of the freezer.

Speaking of lambs, I gave up and Hansel is in with the ewe lambs now. He was going absolutely nuts trying to get in with them.  It's just not fair to try to keep a ram so close to open ewes.  I can't get him in to the butcher until January 9th, so they will be together for two weeks and any lambs will be born in late May.  I used him two years and that's plenty. I'm beginning to think he is indeed Bb/Bb not BB/Bb. Mia, the little black gulmoget ewe lamb he sired out of a moorit ewe, is looking like she could actually be dark brown.  And his face is quite brown now, not black like it was before.  His fleece is still a beautiful grey with the bown tips.


  1. Know it's an unusal Christmas this year. Wish you tough and have a good time with your loved ones. Shanghai duck sounds yummy. I know Peking ducks only.
    Warm regards from Hong Kong

  2. Becky--Each 'first holiday without Stan' is going to be a struggle...but it sounds like you are cooking to beat the band, and have made plans to be busy and with others, and I think that's the best you can do this Christmas.
    I wish you a New Year that is a healing one, and full of surprising joys and creative outlets.
    With love--

  3. Thanks Terri and Heather, the store-bought duck was pretty fat, nothing like the ones we've raised ourselves. I'm going to have to raise my own again. I do have plans for 2012. I just need to get all the details in order and then I'll announce my next big project. :)

  4. Beautiful post Becky. You are sad but strong. Hope 2012 is upbeat and full of sunny happy days. Will I see you in wooster?

  5. Thanks Kathy, you are always so upbeat. And I know you've got a lot on your hands these days. I would love to see you at Wooster, but I'm afraid that I'll probably be at home waiting for my BFL ewe lambs to deliver. :(
    I do plan to attend the Midwest Felting Symposium again and maybe go to Lake Tahoe in July. :)

  6. Is Hansel the gulmoget full poll ram you've had? I thought he was sold. Is he really destined for the freezer? Oh I'm so sad about that.

    Becky, you seem so strong and wise about your present and future without your beloved husband. I can offer nothing but a prayer and a wish that you continue with strength and that you feel the love of your many friends and family members. God Bless your coming New Year.

  7. Yes, Sabrina, Hansel is the smooth polled emsket gulmoget ram I got from Karen who got him from Lori Stephenson. I've used him two years now and I am still a bit upset about having him breed my 4 BFL ewe lambs. My plan was to only lamb out 3 Shetland ewes. He is still for sale for $225 otherwise he's got that appointment at the food locker on the 9th. Yes, Sabrina, Hansel is a nice ram, very mild mannered, but he's still a darn ram and now I've got more lambs coming than I wanted to deal with. Grrrr! I made him an appointment with the butcher for Dec. 12th but canceled it at the last minute, he's so sweet and his fleece is so nice. But I don't have any hides left to sell and I don't have any lamb in the freezer, so I've got to do something with him...I've had him listed for sale for a long time.

  8. Wow, that's weird that my last post was duplicated. Sorry about that!


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