Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Hi Everyone,

It's Chloe again and I'm here helping MOM write an entry.

We now have some pictures of Travis ( he held still for a nano second or 2 ) and MOM said I could share them.

Travis has been here with us since the last Friday in August when MOM brought him home from the dog show. Stylle and I were not expecting to have a new little brother ( even tho MOM said SHE wanted a new baby in the house ), so when he was brought in we were not happy. We didn't like his pulling of our ears, neck, tail or biting us. Stylle bit him several times and he FINALLY decided ( I think boy pups must be slow - it took Stylle about 3-4 days of doing serious biting ) to leave her alone.

But, lucky ( ? ) me, he plays with me all the time.

This is a picture of the little boy-pup wondering what MOM is up to. He can be cute when he wants something - like ALL of MOM's attention.

I think he should stop being cute and then MOM could play with all of us. But, NNNOOOOO - he wants ALL the attention. Stupid, boy-pup.

It looks like he has horns growing out the top of his head but MOM says it's just the way his hair is marked ( Personally, I KNOW those are horns.

He is soooo mean - he bites me all the time and gets in the way so I can't sit next to MOM and cuddle. )

Guess, I'll close for now as Travis is in here chewing on my feet and legs and with his baby teeth - IT HURTS!!!!!

`Bye for now,


Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Hi Everyone!

I'm back again with some info about my baby brother.

If you go to and then click on the site ( on the right side of the page ) where it talks about the 2008 Autumn Oaks and then click on 2008 Autumn Oaks bench show candids, you'll come to a page of pictures. About 1/2 way down the page ( or for those of you who would rather count the pictures ) - if you count down 20 pictures you'll come to a pair of pictures.

One of the pictures ( on the left side of the page ) shows 2 women in the " Thompson Hillbilly " golf cart. Just opposite this picture is my MOM holding my brand new baby brother !!!!!!! Even tho it isn't a good picture of MOM, it shows my baby brother and just how cute he is. I'm hoping to find this picture of MOM and Travis in the October issue of Coonhound Bloodlines so I can post it here.

MOM and I were looking at the UKC website when we found the pictures. Well, I immediately told Stylle about it, but as usual she didn't want to see anything that has to do with Travis ( but she did look at MOM's picture ).

Well, I need to close because Vinnie, Maggie, Cather, and Rosie are loose in the backyard AGAIN - MOM had to put them up this morning and they're out again. Something tells me that they are in big trouble now.

I will be back soon with more pictures of Travis and the rest of us here at ValleView Farms and Duegar Kennels.

So `bye for now.

Chloe, Style, Travis, and MOM

Monday, September 01, 2008

Hi Everyone!
I'm here to introduce all of you to the newest member of the Farm and Duegar Kennels.
I suppose I should give you a little background on Duegar Kennels before you meet the " new kid on the block ".
MOM started Duegar Kennels back in the late 70's or early 80's when SHE was raising dachshunds and doing color breeding with them ( whatever that is, SHE says I'm too young to know about that kind of stuff ).
Anyway ... She showed the dachshunds and did fairly well in that she put points on one of the first dappled ( you spotted Shetland breeders will read this as " spotted " ) dachshund in the midwest ( second only to her father - the first dapple dachshund champion in the country ). SHE also tried to breed for a chocolate dapple dachshund before going back to school to get a degree in nursing.
After school, SHE started breeding Labrador retrievers ( Stylle: yes, this is where I come in at. ).
And did some showing with Mama Dee ( she has a trophy form when she was in a show that she showed me one day ). Stylle : MOM also showed my mom but Jynxie didn't like the show ring so she came home and had me and Vinnie.
Now, SHE is returning to school to finish HER bachelors ( ??? ) degree and possibly a Masters (?) degree.
I came here 3 years ago after Thanksgiving and have been here since.
MOM says I am her girl-pup but can't be bred ( SHE said I had some type of thing done to my tummy so I can't have babies ). MOM says that I get to help HER with any new pups that come here AND that leads us to today.
MOM has been telling me that SHE wants to get me a new baby brother or sister but wasn't sure if SHE was going to do it now ( with school starting on Tuesday. I wonder what " school " is ? )
SHE came home last Friday from a big coonhound dog show ( that's what I am !!! ) with the most handsome boy I have ever seen !!!!!!!
He is a red-head ( like me ) and has lovely deep brown eyes and the prettiest ( can you say that about a boy ? ) red-ticked ( MOM says this is kinda like spots ) coat. His " registered " name ( MOM says this is just a fancy name on papers ) is Duegar's 4Evr N Evr Amen but I get to call him " Travis ".
MOM won't let me play too rough with him because Travis is just a baby ( he will be 8 weeks on tomorrow ) but we do get fairly roudy when MOM isn't looking. MOM said that when SHE was carrying him to the car to bring him home that Wayne Cavanaugh ( the president of the United Kennel Club ) stopped HER and took HER and Travis's picture for Coonhound Bloodlines magazine ( I must admit it is a nice magazine with pictures of all kinds of coonhounds - and now MY MOM and BABY BROTHER will have their pictures in it. WOW!!!!!! ). He must be some special kind of brother to have such an important man take his picture.
We haven't had any time to take any pictures of me and Stylle with Travis but MOM says we will soon.
Stylle : I wish MOM hadn't brought this thing home with her. He stinks and has VERY sharp teeth. I bit him about 3 times to make sure he knew NOT to bother me. Altho I do have to admit he does keep Chloe busy so she doesn't bother me much any more. So, I guess he can stay for a while as long as he understands that I am the boss around here.
Anyway, I really like Travis even if he does play with my toys. I hope he stays for a LLLLLOOOONNNGGGG time. ( even tho Stylle doesn't like him. She acted the same way when I came here to live wiith her and MOM ).
So, I'm going to go see if Travis is awake yet ( he takes a lot of naps - MOM says it's because he's a baby ) and ask MOM if we can go outside and play for a little bit.
I will be back real soon with pictures of MOM and me and Stylle and Travis. MOM said as long as I'm a good girl that I can come back and tell everyone bout Travis. It's so hard to be good but if it means I can use the computer WITHOUT getting in trouble I'll do it.
See everyone soon.
Chloe, big sister to Travis. And Stylle, too.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Tour de Fleece is over .....................................

It's been over for about a week now and, unfortunately, I wasn't able to do any more spinning than I did at the start. Thanks to a change in my work schedule, I wasn't able to finish anything ( it's hard to spin when you work 7 straight night shifts in a row, with 3 of them being 12 hours long and the rest being 8 hours ) it doesn't make for much time but sleep a few ( maybe 4-5 per day ) and work and somehow eat in between all this.

Chloe and Stylle were not at all impressed with this work schedule and they will like next weeks even less. As of Monday 8/4 I will be working 8 days in a row. I normally don't do things like this but I'm transitioning from a 13 week contract to per diem until another contract becomes available. That is, if I live thru this. * sigh *

I finally got my sheep shears from Premier One and they look HUGE. I haven't tried them yet, but I will, probably after Labor Day when I'll have some time ( I'm taking a well earned vacation during the week of the big coonhound show on Labor Day weekend ). I don't have a dog in it,but I'm going to be looking for a new puppy so Chloe can be a " big sister ". If I find the pup I want, I'll be bringing her home with me ( yes, I said " her " because I want a little girl-pup to go with my big Girl-Pup ). Stylle was heard the other day to be muttering something about another one of those damned loud-mouthed coonhounds coming to live in her house - I don't think she's too happy with the prospect of having another pup around since Chloe will be 3 in Oct. Poor Stylle, I guess I just upset her apple cart.

Well, as usual, Chloe is quiet and that ain't good so I'd better see what she's into.

Come back and see the new baby ( hopefully ) after Labor Day.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Fuzzy Fuzzy Fuzzy

Sorry for the fuzziness of the picture but the camera is having a " bad hair day ".

This is the first part of the first single of Baron's roving that I've spun for the Tour De Fleece. It's a little finer than I wanted so I'll have to spin the other singles a bit thicker to make it the weight I want. It did spin up easily, I just didn't have much time to work on it and haven't done anything since Monday because of work ( I keep trying to convince the dogs and the sheep that if they wouldn't eat then I could stay home with them and get more done. For some reason they don't like that idea. Silly animals. )

I have been knitting with this yarn for about 10 days and I love it. It's Noro Taiyo yarn and it's made up of 40% cotton, 30% silk, 15 % wool and 15 % nylon. It has a nice soft handle and stripes it self into some of the prettiest fabric I've ever worked with. I was going to make a sweater of my own design but decided 1/2 way thru the back that I wanted it made into a cardigan. So, I will continue to knit it as if it were a sweater but when I'm finished I will cut the front ( I plan on putting steeks in the front ) and knitting on button bands. I think I will get more use out of it as a cardigan than a sweater.

This is what the yarn looks like knit up so far. The colors from my camera don't show up as pretty as in person. The fabric has a lot of green in it but it also has some very pretty blues, peachy oranges, purples ( from a lilac/lavender to a rich deep royal purple ) and blacks. It's interesting to see the progression of the colors within the stripes because almost all of the colors found in the yarn are seen in the stripes as they're knit. It's a very entertaining yarn. I normally only wear striped socks but with this yarn I'll make an exception ( besides I figure if others don't like it , then they don't have to look. ).
More later.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Le Tour De Fleece

Here is the roving I plan to spin into a 3-ply worsted weight yarn for my cardigan. It's from my favorite wether, Baron, who I lost 1 year ago this past March.

Baron was one of the few Perendales in the States. He started out as a very dark chocolate moorit when I got him. After his 1st shearing with me, his fleece started to lighten with the increase in grey fibers. He continued to lighten til his death, when he was the color of coffee with a lit of cream in it . His fleece has always had a very soft handle and is springy when spun into yarn. I have spun some of his darker fleece into yarn that will go to make an aran sweater.

This is the cardigan I plan on making out of Baron's wool that I will be spinning in the Tour De Fleece. It's called Oblique and calls for 19 balls of yarn that have 72 yds/ 40 gm ball ( which figures out to 1368 yds needed - I like my cardigans to be big enough that I can wear another sweater beneath it ). I'm gonna try my best to get at least a good bit of it done during these next 3 weeks and I will be posting daily, or as close to daily as my job and sleep schedule will allow, so you can see how things are coming along.

Well, it's time to get off the computer, dust off the wheel and get started on this yarn. Will post more soon. Good luck to all who participate.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Well, I just signed up for Le Tour De Fleece 2008.!!!

I will be spinning Baron's tweedy roving into a 3-ply worsted weight yarn so I can make the oblique cardigan this fall/winter ( it's just a tad too hot to really work with wool yarn right now - it's supposed to get up to the mid to upper 90's today ). I like the way his wool looks after it was turned into roving - it should work well in oblique.

Have just about enough energy left ( after working a 12-hour boring night shift ) to finish this post and crawl into bed.

Will post more later ... stay tuned for pix of the roving ( if I can get thsat *&^%$# digital camera to work, that is).

Friday, June 06, 2008

Ducks .... Ducks .... Ducks .... And rain

Now, I don't know about anyone else, but I'm getting pretty tired of Mother Nature having these temper tantrums of late.

Now, I'll concede that she can have a few thunderstorms if she wants ( it makes for good sleep ) BUT I must draw the line with all these tornadoes/ straight line winds crap!!!

In the 12 years I've lived here on the farm NEVER have we had not even 1 tornado warning. Oh, we do get the occassional severe thunderstorm watch/ warning or maybe, just maybe the rare tornado watch but to have a real live-honest-to-God tornado warning (and not just one but THREE ) this is a bit too much. And to beat it all, ..... there WAS a tornado in the neighborhood of the farm.

Now, I don't have any idea just who pissed Mother Nature off but I suggest that that person do whatever it takes to get her back in a good mood and stop this foolishness. It's getting embarrassing.

Back to the ducks. Chloe loves ducks and since the real ones went to that great duck pond in the sky a few months back, Girl-Pup has been checking out their pen on a daily basis to see if they've returned yet. No, this ain't a pretty picture.

So, whenever I hike thru Wal-Mart, I have been buying her some of the squeaky rubber duckies they have for little kids to play with in the bathtub .... and let me tell you that Girl-Pup is beside herself. I think at last count she had somewhere are 10 of these things (if not more ). She wants to take pictures of them and write a post about them and I told her she could but that I was going to take the pictures ( I don't relish the thought of cleaning out coonhound slobber from my camrea - yeah, I know spoil sport ). So stay tuned for the " ducks on parade " ( Chloe's idea, not mine ).

Saturday, May 10, 2008

What No Rain ? .......

It's quit raining for the time being but the weather people looked at their tea leaves and said it's gonna rain again tomorrow - to be honest, I'd rather have this rain than the drought we had last year - at least, my pasture is now green with grass instead of the mossy stuff that was there last year.

Speaking of the sheep, they seem to be doing ok. I've been feeding them some alfalfa hay cubes in the morning for breakfast then turning them out into the pasture for the day ( they usually spend the night in the backyard ), and call them back for supper after 6pm for some more alfalfa cubes and pelleted grain mix. They are starting to put on more weight and look 100% better than they did earlier.

I finally got Alyse rooed. I have NEVER had a ewe as filthy as she was. She had soft stool mixed into her britch that was absolutely nasty. It took about 2 hours to get her cleaned up even with some of her wool starting to roo on its own ( of course the little growth - aka Sonni, the lamb - helped roo some of her wool by climbing on her back ). Her wool ( of course, it was her lambswool ) was full of thistle stickers,vm and tons of stuff I don't even want to think about, so it was thrown out. Her new wool shows some spotting over her sides and a nice dorsal stripe. Now, all I have to do is roo Wenny, Lacie, Maddie, Glorie, and shear Linda and TJ and I'll be done for this year. Think I'll invest in a shearing machine for next year instead of doing it by hand - I might be able to have everyone sheared before Thanksgiving that way !!!

The lamb has a name. She will be known as ValleView Sonzarai. I worked with a nurse who was named " Sonzaray " and thought it a beautiful name. Sonni is growing like a weed and as happy as a clam with her " mom's " attention. I think she might be just a little bit spoiled.

The pastures are coming along fine. I actually have enough grass in them to cover the sheep's hooves - not everyplace in the pastures but in most, so the stress is of them and hopefully, they will recover without too much difficulty. Will be keeping the sheep in the backyard and catch pen this fall/winter and do some fertilizing and reseeding of the pastures so they will be better next spring. No lambs next year but maybe the year after, I'll rent a ram for a season and see what happens. Who knows.

Well, Chloe is too quiet so I need to see what she's into. Still can't trust her completely.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

I guess the weekend decided NOT to end ......

When I went out to close the pasture gate on Monday, I found that I was 1 duck short. Some critter had gotten into the kennel over the night and taken one of my duck hens ( and they were just getting started in laying eggs well ). No footprints were found ( it's kinda hard to see a foot print in straw ). So I fussed and fumed until it was time to go to work.

I had told the boy I buy hay from that if he could use a used 75 foot garden hose, it was his and I told him where he'd find it. At this time, I had 2 drakes and 5 hens. He said that all the ducks were there when he came to get the hose.

When I got home around 2 am on Tuesday, I still had the 7 ducks. They were a little flighty, but they would do that if I left them out in the catch pen and not put them in their kennel. So I went to bed.

When I finally got up around 7:30 on Tuesday morning ( I had to have a ppd placed for work was the only reason I was up then ), I went out to close the pasture gate and found 7 dead ducks in the catch pen !!!

They were scattered around the pen as if they had died where they had been runnig to get away from whatever was after them. To look at the ducks, only 1 had visible signs of blood on her until you walked up to the hen at the gate to the front yard - her head had been eaten off !!!!

I had had these ducks for 3 years ( they were 6 months older than Chloe ) and I was very upset.

I talked to the boy I get my hay from and told him how it looked and he said it sounded like a raccoon had gotten in the pen and killed all the ducks but couldn't get them out. I was so upset all I could think of was to find that beast and do to it what it had done to my ducks - I didn't care if it lived or not. I WANTED IT DEAD!!!

I have calmed down since then and will be getting more ducks and some geese later this spring and have been told how to make sure this doesn't happen again. So ...

This is a WARNING to all the foxes and raccoons around here :


Now, let the bastards come around and try for a free meal - they won't like what their next meal will be.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

It's not been a good week around here and only got worse.

I have been at orientation for a " last ditch " psychiatric hospital ( the hospital is state run and takes in patients that have been deem incompetent to stand trial, are child molesters,rapests, and patients that have such chronic psychiatric disorders that they have been shipped there as a last resort ) and have been taught how to " take down " a patient that is totally out of control.

Things were going fine until we did the hands-on take downs with the instructors and, lucky me, I got one who said ( out of one side of her mouth ) " we are not trying to hurt you " but, would laugh and smile like a fiend when someone got hurt because of how " rough " she was acting . Now, I'm not afraid of patients and am not afraid of being hurt in the line of protecting the safety of one of my patients, BUT I do draw the line when someone who is supposedly teaching me a way to remain safe and not injure a patient deliberately goes out of her way to cause injury to us and thinks it's funny !!!

I felt a pop in my left instep ( which was ignored when I said so ) and way thrown into a solid cement block wall because this chick wanted to show us ( we were in groups of three ) what a patient can do to you. And, if that don't beat all, because of her actions every instructor was concerned about her getting the wind knocked out of her at the same time I hit the floor with my bad knee and couldn't get up!! Thank goodness, she works days and I will be working evenings/nights.

AND as if that wasn't enough to frost you're cookies, I get home on Thursday and was met by my a#^h*le neighbor stating if I don't do something with my sheep he's going to shoot them.

Now, my babies are between 3 months and 4 weeks of age and I was getting ready to place ads on one of the Shetland lists I'm on but because of this threat I had to call a friend of mine and ask him if he could help me catch the sheep on Friday so I could send them to market on Saturday. We caught eveyone of the little buggers - which if you've ever tried to catch a wild slippery youngster who doesnot want to be caught you know what I mean.

Saturday morning, I got up and caught the sheep I was going to keep ( my 2 border Leicesters, 3 adult Shetland ewes, 2 yearling Shetland ewes and the baby of one of the yearlings. ) Total sheep kept = 8. Total sent to market = 19 babies and 19 adults.

Needless to say, yesterday wasn't a good day. The 3 adult ewes spent the entire day calling for their babies and running all over the pastures looking for them. It was heart breaking. One of the ewes had horns and it broke off in my hand as I caught her and before I could get a halter on her - so she won't have anything to do with me ( can't say I blame her ).

Today, the ewes aren't calling as much but everytime I walk out the back door, they want me to come to the gate and let them in the backyard. The lone baby is now spoiled because when she cries for her mom she has 3 other ewes answer her and come to her to see what she needs.

I can only hope that my sheep and their babies went to good homes - the man that took them to market for me ( I couldn't go - it was all I could do not to cry as I sent them off ) that the babies will probably sell for more than the others because they are little and can be made into pets easier than the adults.

At least now, I hope , they will go to people who can give them all they need. After last year's drought and even though we did have a lot of rain this spring, my pastures are just about shot to pieces. I hope that with just 8 sheep, the pastures will have time to re-coop and do better. But , it still was very hard to get rid of my old girls and some of my favorites and only keep the ones I did. Truth be known, I cried along with the ewes - it was heart-breaking.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be better.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Weather forecast ...

Rain...rain...rain...rain...rain...rain...rain.....OMG, I think the Ark is up and running !!!

I am tired of the rain, the sheep are tired of the rain, the dogs in the kennel are tired of the rain, and the house girls are tired of the rain.

Now, I know we need rain to help the spring flowers/bulbs/trees grow and it will/would be nice to get some rain this summer so the hay/feed grains/other veggies can grow ...BUT ... do we have to get All Of The Summers Rain In One DAY ?????

I hope to shear everyone the end of the month and as wet as they are now, if it stopped raining right this minute and didn't rain until after April 1st, I might, just might have the sheep dried out enough to shear ( but I sure wouldn't hold my breath on it then ).

On another side of farm life, Candi ( ValleView Candida = Underhill Ferguson x Shandrew Pekin ) had her baby this morning during the deluge. It's ( I haven't ventured out of the house to check the new baby's sex yet ) black with sugar lips and the appearence of light rings around the eyes. I'd bet dollars to doughnuts this little one is gonna be a grey kat mollet like its mom and granddad. I just hope its a girl ( so far the boys are winning ).

I still have over 15 girls to deliver and I'm crossing my fingers that I will get at least 1 baby with spots ( Dani was the only spotted baby from last year ).

Well, it's time to put on the hip waders and swim out to the car and get to town for my allergy prescription - it's soooo wonderful to have hay fever that lasts 24/7/365. I wouldn't know how to handle being able to breathe without taking meds ( but I'd love to try ). Yeah, it's one of my delusional days. * sigh *

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Was walking thru the bedroom this past weekend and, of course, Chloe was present to help me ( I might get lost making my way from the sofa to the bathroom and back again - me thinks the Girl-Pup thinks MOM is loosing it ?!! )

Anywho, she was out of sight for a couple of seconds ( and without Stylle around to help keep tract of her - THIS can be a dangerous situation, as she is in the middle of THE TERRIBLE TWOS - and yes, they are as bad with her as with any human child I've ever seen - it just ain't pretty ), and knowing Chloe as I do I called her name.

Well, she popped around the corner of the bed and made a single bark as if to say " WHAT ?!!! " ( in a very exassperated tone like MOM I AM RIGHT HERE - WHAT DO YOU WANT - not the best tone to be speaking to you mother with unless you have an overwhelming desire to get the crap slapped straight out of you !!! ) and just looked at me. I just looked at her and thought " well, it was easy to figure out what she was saying ".

Right now, Chloe is glaring out the front window at a pair of squirrels digging for walnuts. This is not tolerated in HER front yard !!!!- she barks at the squirrels and then runs up to me " telling " me about these horrible creatures in her front yard and then will run back and forth between the window and me barking until I get up and confirm that , yes there are squirrels out front, at which time she lays down in front of the window and fusses at them under her breath.

Sometimes, it's amazing what kids ( human or canine ) will say.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Want to have a little laugh ???

I found this website in my email box this morning and took the test offered. It was hilarious.
Give it a try ...

Monday, March 10, 2008

Still no pics - if this computer and camera don't make nice soon ...

Saturday, in the middle of a major snow storm, Pekin ( one of my original Shetland ewes ) decided it was time to have her babies. Great timing Peke !!!

She had a black ewe lamb that didn't make it ( and it wasn't because Peke isn't a good mom - you actually couldn't ask for a better mom than Pekin )- I found her under an old downed tree limb cold and stiff with quite a bit of a mucousy discharge from her nose and a very nice dark grey/almost black katmoget ram lamb. This little guy is soooo full of himself he " prances " instead of walks. And if being the color he is isn't enough, he has a black spot over his left hip - cool dude.

Desparately need to get this computer/camera situation fixed BEFORE the rest of the lambs are born ( and before I throw the combo out the window !!! )

Started spinning the dyed roving from the other day and ended up making groups of 3 sets of roving ( bright, medium,and light ) and spinning them together into a nice balanced 3-ply yarn. Had to dye 2 more 50-gram balls of roving to make an even 4 groups but that's ok - my hands were just starting to get back to their natural color and now they are red/orange/yellow again. But what's the fun in dyeing if you can't dye yourself in the process ???

Better go have ANOTHER discussion with the computer and camera and see if we can't get this problem fixed ( the threat of being bodily thrown from the nice warm house might be enough incentive to get things fixed ). Hopefully, will have some pics soon.

Friday, March 07, 2008

I had some pictures of the winter storm warning ( aka snow storm ) going on outside the back door but my computer and the camera decided they didn't want to play nice together, so no pictures today.

It started snowing ( that real fine stuff ) at about 815 this am and now ( it's 1129 am 3/7/08 ) the snow is coming down faster out of the north with a wind that bites to the bone.

I went out to let the kennel dogs out to run ( before I froze ) and have about 1.5 - 2 inches of snow now. The labs loved it - to the point it was hard to get Vinnie back into the kennel ( actually, he thinks that when he's allowed out , he's to stay out as long as he wants - WRONG ) but Maggie came bouncing in with out any problem.

After I came back in the house, Chloe ( aka Girl-Pup ) was pleading to go outside and she won. I couldn't get her to hold still long enough to put her sweater on, so she was out for about 20 minutes running as fast as she could. She visited the kennel dogs and the sheep ( unfriendly, tho they were ) and found all kinds of sticks to carry around. It's amazing how much she loves the snow - she runs around like a 6-month-old puppy in the snow. After bringing her back inside and taking her collar off ( she isn't allowed outside without it being on - gotta have some way of keeping track of her ), she got a drink of water and piled up on the sofa next to Stylle and now, both of them are sound asleep.

Had a job interview yesterday with a local hospital for a weekend option position in the ICU and they called this morning asking if I could come in next Tues for a second interview. Hopefully, I will know in a few days if I got the job. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

I plan on baking some bread this afternoon. My favorite recipe is for " oatmeal toasting and sandwich bread " from the back of the King Arthur's bread flour bag. It's a strong bread, in that it will hold up to any type of food you want to put on it ( and NOT collapse like the store bought bread does ). You can't taste the oatmeal ( for those who don't like oatmeal ) but it's a nice substantial bread and I usually make 1 loaf a week. BUT today, instead of letting it bake in the bread machine ( I have carpal tunnel bad enough, that if I knead the dough, my hands fall asleep for the biggest part of the day. And I love to knead dough. ). I'm gonna bake it in the oven.
The girls love this bread,too, and will walk into the kitchen with their noses up in the air smelling it and when I cut into it, they are at my elbows hoping I drop the whole loaf for them to inhale ( like THAT'S gonna happen - I'd fight them tooth and nail for this bread !!! ).

Since I'm home for the rest of the weekend ( I went to the grocery store and the feed store yesterday ) I might try some new recipes. Will see if i can get the camera and compouter play nice so I can put up some pictures of what I do.

Better go so I can get all this done. Just thinking about makuing bread is making me HUNGRY!!!

Monday, March 03, 2008

Well, it's official ( as of 2/24/08 ) - lambing season has started here. Linda, my black border Leicester ewe delivered a pair of twins - a white boy and a nice little feminine black ewe before I got home from work last Monday. Both babies were up and eating. I put everyone in the pasture and when I let them out to feed them ( they can't be in the backyard during the day because Girl-Pup has to go hunting for whatever ) , both babies were ok. After about 45 minutes in the catch pen for their night meal ( and me getting ready to go to work ), the white ram lamb was gone. Dissappeared. Vanished. Linda never cried for him or anything. Makes me think there was something wrong with him and probably a possum or raccoon got him.

Went to my favorite lys on Sat because she was having a sale on everything and I made out well. I spent $48.00 that normally would have run me $68.00 - not too bad for 10 skeins of yarn.

Decided that, since I lost my job last Fri ( don't ask - it ain't worth it ), that with my tax return I'd start selling hand-dyed/hand-spun Shetland yarns and rovings on Etsy. So now, I have 10 50 gram balls of white Shetland roving sitting on the island in the kitchen waiting to be dyed and spun and, possibly, knit into something. I have a ton ( ok, 20 lbs ) of white Shetland roving waiting to be made into beautiful wildly-colored roving and yarn - what fun!!! Y'all will have to stop by and check out the store when I get it up and running ( hopefully, within the next 4-6 weeks ). I'm really excited to be able to do this now because I've always wanted to have my own little wool business at home since I've had the sheep and now, I am in a position to do it ( and, yes, I am looking for another job to help pay the bills until things get going on Esty).

I have been out checking the ewes to see how things are going and one of my favorite ewes looks to be as big as a barn and ( for the 1st time ) I was able to see her baby lamb move ( and no, she is still in full fleece )!!! Lacie looks so uncomfortable right now and she still has about 2 1/2 weeks to go before her due date - I'm not real sure she's gonna last that long, her belly is almost touching the ground now.

Well, I hear Girl-Pup up and moving around -she and Stylle were stretched out on the couch a few minutes ago snoring ( they have such a rough life ) and since she's still considered a pup ( even at 2 years 5 months ) I don't trust her when she's up and out of my sight AND quiet - it's hard telling WHAT she's into. Better go and check things out.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Chloe's Health Condition Update .......

Hi Everyone !

MOM said that I could blog you all about how Chloe is.

As of Saturday 2/9/08, Chloe's tail problem is all gone. She is able to wag her tail without any problem.

The problem with her now is that she's driving me and MOM crazy because when she was having some discomfort with her tail she got cuddled and pampered. Well,now that her tail is fine, she thinks she should still get all the attention ... to the point she climbed right up in MOM'S face and barked that she needed some attention ( how she lived thru THAT I don't know ). Now, Chloe is back to being a PIA - which is her usual state of affairs.

MOM says SHE'S tired of all this cold weather and is ready for it to get warmer. I saw HER knitting a real pretty lavender sweater after finishing a bright green one - SHE said it was helping HER get thru all this cold. ( All I know is I get to lie down next to HER and talk to HER when SHE knits and that's good - even if Chloe does pitch a fit about it ).

Well, I'd better go - I hear a food bag being rattled and I need to check it out.

Til later,


Thursday, February 07, 2008

Hi Everyone,

Well, I have a problem that MOM says will get better in a couple of days,but I don't know.

My tail feels funny ... it kinda hurts and it kinda feels like it's not there ( even I know it's there ).

I told MOM , after dinner, that my tail didn't feel right and SHE said I had something called " cold tail " and that hunting dogs get this problem at times and is nothing to worry about and goes away but aspirin ( whatever that is ) will make it feel better in a couple of days.

I have a hard time sitting down - it's hard to sit when you don't know where your tail is. This morning it had it's usual curl in it and would wiggle when I was happy, but now all it does is hang off the back of my butt. I can't even wiggle it - it's JUST THERE !!!!!

MOM said that the medicine SHE put in the bread SHE gave me around 8pm will make my tail feel better but, so far, all it's done is make me sleepy. I was lying down next to MOM and SHE was rubbing my tummy and scratching my ribs and telling me that Uncle Catcher had this same problem when he was younger and SHE did the same thing for him and he was OK. SHE also said I should talk to him about it. I think I'll do that tomorrow * yawn * after I get up.

I think I'm going to S T R E T C H out on the sofa next to MOM and take a nap ...I'm soooo sleepy.

Will let you know who my tail gets along. ( I heard Stylle laughing earlier when MOM was telling her what was wrong. Just because she hasn't had this problem with her " otter tail " doesn't mean it ain't real. Just wait til I get better ..... )

* yawn * 'bye for now,


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

And we have a clean fleece

I got 1/2 of Lacie's fleece washed and now it's on the island drying - it looks so nice and white ( alright, there are some grey areas because she had grey spots as a baby ). Now, to do the other 1/2.

I've decided to dye 1/2 of the fleece navy and take the other 1/2 and divide it into fourths and dye each 1/4 one of the following colors : 1 will be red; the next will be green; the next will be bright yellow, and the last will be turquoise. When I get everything dyed and carded, I plan on spinning the navy as a solid single and spin the other 4 colors as I pull them out of the basket into a single and then ply it with the navy single and see what I get. I figure either 1) I'll like it and repeat it, or 2) I'll hate it and do something else. It's a 50-50 chance.

Better go see if I can find another sweater drying rack so I can start on the other 1/2 of the fleece.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Today's agenda is ....

Since I have running water again ( it froze last Thursday, and I thought the well was dry by the way it was acting so I had 1100 gal of water delivered on Sat only to find that the well was 3/4 full - go figure ), I thought I'd wash the few dishes I have and then wash Lacie's fleece that I skirted almost 2 weeks ago.My how time flies when you want to do something but are blocked.
I figure, I'll wash this fleece and let it dry on the kitchen island ( with the stern admonishments to Chloe AGAIN ) so that I can dye it later this week. Not sure what colors I'm going to use yet ... probably a red, green, blue, and orange combo and card it with the white to make a type of heathered yarn, but we'll see, things can change between now and then.

I have an interview at the hospital I want to work at on Wed at 1230pm - I'm sooo happy I can hardly stand it. Mainly, because one of my favorite docs works there and I miss working with him - hopefully, I will get the job, so I must calm down before the interview.

The temp is finally above freezing today for the 2nd day in a row. Yesterday, it was in the fortys and the water pipes thawed out by 5pm and water was running, without the rust, by 6pm ( takes a little time to clear out the lines. ). Oh Happy Day - we have running water again !!!! Will make sure to get the dishes and the laundry done before it freezes again - the weatherman ( ? ) is calling for low 30's for next weekend. Well, as the saying goes - if you don't like the weather, wait a few minutes and it will change ( but to tell the truth, I have just about had it with this cold frigid stuff this year - and I like cold, but frigid is above and beyond cold. ).

I found a lovely little yarn shop last Fri and will definitely be going back there. It's run by a young lady and her mom comes with her to care for her 10 month old baby. She has some beautiful yarns - I just touched, rubbed, cuddled, and slobbered myself into oblivion while I was there. I could have died happy. Oh, and of course, I came back with some wonderful yarns and will be going back to buy more. * sigh *

Guess, I'd better go see what Chloe is doing - she's tooooo quiet - don't trust an active rambunctious 2-yr-old pup when she's quiet.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Canine cooking .....

Because it's so blasted cold ( it was 13 when I was reluctantly forced out of my nice warm bed this morning and the temp continues to go down ) and the weather people are calling for STILL air temps of 0 and wind chills of -3 to -10 overnight, I thought I'd be the nice lab mom and cook some dog chow for my beasties. YUMMMMM. I fill an old dutch oven with dog chow and cover it ( well, almost is more correct ) with water and then put it on the burner on low and " it's soup " in about 35-40 minutes. Everytime I get up to stir it, my resident taste-testers are waiting with ribbons of slobber hanging from the corners of their mouths.
So, the teaste-testers ( aka, Chloe and Stylle ) have to sample every batch I make to make sure it's good enough for the kennel dogs and the ducks to eat. You should see the ducks - the minute I get near their pen, they start squaking and yelling so that by the time I try to open the gate I have to push them away. Then it's a free-for-all to get to their feed pan and dump the still warm dog food in it and run or you lose a hand - to say the ducks like the hot/warm dog food would be an understatement. The first time I gave it to them late last fall, they just looked at the food in their pan, looked at me, and then one hen became brave enough to try it, and since she didn't drop over dead ( the ducks greatest fear, next to having Vinnie catch them out of their pen when he's out ) they dove into the pan and haven't looked back since.
So, I need to carry this mixture out and feed the dogs and ducks and give the sheep their hay and sweet feed mix so I can wrap up in a couple of quilts with a couple of dogs and knit and not freeze to death tonight.
Hopefully, it will get a little warmer tomorrow ... who knows what Mother Nature has up her sleeve .....

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


When I got up this morning, the hot water in the bathroom and kitchen was still frozen even tho the cold water was running. AND, if that isn't enough - the water line to the toilet is still frozen!!! Oh, the toilet can be flushed only if you pour 2 gallons of water into the tank, it's such a pain in the backside to do so but a necessity.

Well, after filling out what seemed to be a bazillion applications ( I'm looking for a new job - yes, I do get delusional at times ), I thought " let's see if the hot water is still frozen ". At about 1230 pm today, I had HOT RUNNING WATER AND THE TOILET FLUSHES !!!!!
Yes, it does take sooo little to make me happy.
I was so thrilled to have hot water that I did the dishes and flushed the toilet about 3 times to make sure I wasn't dreaming - and it all still works. Maybe, I can wash the fleece I skirted over the past weekend. I can dream of clean sweet smelling fleece drying on the island in the kitchen ( with Chloe being threatened with bodily harm if she touches it. Girl-pup loves to stand on tippy-toe and smell the fleece and has been caught with her tongue out trying to lick the fleece, hoping that some of it will fall on the floor so she can grab it and make a mad dash with it before I catch her. Fun and games in the kitchen ).
It is so nice to have the dishes done - the kitchen looks so much better than it did this morning.
Now, to go fix dinner and make some dirty dishes so I can wash them again. * sigh *

Sunday, January 20, 2008

No new pix today ... IT'S TOOOO COLD!!!!!

The temp, when I let the girls out, was about 3-4 degrees ABOVE zero with a mild wind - so there's no telling exactly how cold it is. All I know is that I have cold running water in the house ( if I need hot water I can always heat it up ) and everyone outside is ok. The kennel dogs were barking as I walked out the back door and the sheep were upset because I ran ( read, grudgingly walked ) them out to the pasture so Chloe and Stylle could go out and see what the sheep left them.

I will never understand why they would rather eat frozen woolie poopsicles instead of dog food. It has to be a dog thing - I just look the other way when they do this and, should someone start coughing, I tell them I am not going down their throats to get out what might be there ( considering WHAT they have just put in there ).

Yesterday,I thought I'd clean a fleece and wash it today so I could dye it later this week. I had intended to clean TJ's fleece but couldn't find one so, I skirted one of Lacie's and divide it into 2 bags, weigh it, wash it, and dye one bag and spin and ply them together and put it on etsy for sale. But since the temp is down ( it's a bit cool in the house ) so I think I can wait until the hot water line is thawed out and make it easier on me. I do have her fleece skirted and divided into 2 bags and weighed ( 1 bag is 14 oz, and the other is 16 oz ), now all I have to do is decide what colors ( yes, I plan on making the yarn a combination of a multi-colored single plied with a white or other solid colored single ) and spin it into a light dk weight yarn. I'm not sure if the solid single will be white, black, brown or some other color - I'll have to see what mood I'm in at that time. It should be an interesting yarn anyway you look at it.

I did finish my purple cap just in time to wear it this weekend in this cold " snap ". It keeps my head nice and warm - now to finish the scarf to go with it.

Well, back to my knitting needles and the green sweater I need to finish - I need to finish the sleeves and do the button bands and sew it together and block it and it will be done. I like this sweater more and more as I knit it - it was supposed to have a lace bodice but I decided to make it plain and , if I do it again, I will make the bodice out of a lace pattern. Like I said, I do like this pattern and the yarn I'm knitting it in is ok ( it's Knit Pics Palete in 100% Peruvian wool in grass ) but I think I'll make it in some other yarn because, even though this is a nice 2 ply yarn, it splits more than I like and tries to untwist with each stitch ( it has become rather tedious making sure it doesn't untwist completely as I knit with it ).Oh well.

Back to the needles - HEY, there's a football game on this afternoon - the best time to knit!!!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Hi Everyone,

MOM is in the other room so I decided to blog a little bit.

I was reading another blog ( Pink Lemon Twist ) with MOM about a really cute boy who was talking about how much he loves raw fleeces. I wrote to him about what it's like living with sheep. Hope he can talk his mom into getting him some sheep.


MOM is going thru HER picture books about knitting and I have been helping her. As SHE puts the book ( the real thin kind SHE brings home from the store that has all the food in it ),I move it over to my side of the sofa and look at the pix hoping that MOM will make me another sweater like the one I have on. SHE does such a good job but SHE won't teach me how to knit ... something about not being allowed to chew on the wooden knitting needles ( but it's soooo much fun ).

MOM said that we were going to fix the fence but because it rained so much last night and the spot that needs to be fixed is standing in water, we can't do it. MOM said we'd do it tomorrow and then SHE said I could go out and play and SHE wouldn't have to stand outside and watch me ( I hate it when SHE does that because I can't dig or carry or smell all the good stuff outside ). I hope we can get the fence fixed.

Well, better go for now, I hear MOM coming down the hall ( and SHE doesn't like me to use the computer - I apologized tons after that problem when the computer stopped working after I blogged last spring. I wish SHE would just forget it. Ain't gonna happen in the near future. ).

So, until later,


Monday, January 07, 2008

I decided the other day, while I was watching a soap, that I needed a new wool hat to wear, and since I have been working on a scarf made out of superwash merino/alpaca and nylon in purple that the hat needed to be purple ( makes sense to me ). The camera thought it was blue but it's purple Perendale that I bought at Paradise Fibers before Christmas. It isn't superwash so I have to remember NOT to put it in the washing machine ( been there, done that ) to clean it. It's made in New Zealand out of 8-ply Perendale and is DK weight and soft and a joy to work with - no splits here. ( Don't know why the pix is fuzzy, must have been one of those days ).

I looked all over the internet to find some Perendale yarn after losing Baron this spring, and I found some at a farm in California and at Paradise Fibers. I bought some from both places and was not impressed with the white Perendale yarn I got from Calif. - it was scratchy and full of VM ( not like Baron's wool that I have spun already - his wool is soft and springy ). The wool I 'm using for the hat reminds me of Baron's wool - it's also soft and springy. Will definitely be getting more Perendale wool yarn in the future from Paradise Fibers.

Well, need to get off the computer because Chloe thinks it's time to go out and play in the mud - the snow we got the other day is completely gone and left mud in it's wake.

Back again with more snow pix.

Here, we see Girl-Pup ( a.k.a. Chloe ) stopping and watching what Stylle is doing in the snow. Notice ALL the big foot prints this girl put over the backyard - she sure had a lot of fun running around full tilt in the snow while I froze taking the pix and laughing at her. Talk about a clown!!!

Here are Chloe and Stylle sniffing around in the snow - must have been some big bad animal out there earlier ( or it's that #$%^&* neighbor's cat who has torn the insulation off the furnace ducts so it can lie there and stay warm. Not to mention causing Chloe tons of grief that she " shares " with me at the top of her lungs ). Must be hard to sniff the snow and not get it up your nose.

Here is my beautiful girl - Duegar's Just My Stylle. She loves to have her picture taken - she's such a ham. And as you can see, Stylle hasn't missed too many meals ( but don't ask her that because she thinks that if the gravity-fed feeder in the kitchen isn't full to the top, she has nothing to eat and will tell you so in no uncertain terms. But, that's my girl!!!

Friday, January 04, 2008

This is how it looks as you gaze down toward the woods - the snow is about 1.5 inches deep here and if you look real hard you can see the prints of tiny hooves in the snow. No, Virginia, it ain't Santa's reindeer ( altho I'd really really like to have a pet reindeer ) it's the toe prints of the woolies. They think that if they stomp all over this cold stuff the grass will miraculously re-appear. Silly sheep.

And this is the view looking towards the creek alongside the road near the front of the place. No toe prints here.

Now, here we find some HUGE footprints ALL OVER the smooth white snow. What could have caused these to appear?.
It was caused by none other than Chloe running around having a great time in the cold while her MOM stands on the deck freezing her tush off!!!
The Girl-pup has no concern for her MOM as long as she is having fun - it must be nice to be 2 years old and have the world as your oyster.
( It would be even better if I didn't have to stay out with her, but she now knows how to jump over the fence and thinks it's great fun to see MOM scream and carry on while she just stands and wiggles. Gotta get the fence fixed after this stuff melts. It's supposed to do that by this weekend - one can only cross one's fingers. )
Now, if I can just remember to fix the date stamp on the camera as some of the pictures have the correct date while others are stamped "13/02/2007 ". Hmmmm, didn't know that 2007 had 13 months in it did you ??? SURPRIZE !!!

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Well, it seems that Chloe and Stylle ( along with the help of the the elves at Paradise Fibers ) got me something for Christmas that I can use with my homespun yarns and here is what I found under the tree.

This gizmo is a yarn meter - Chloe says that it will measure the amount of yarn run thru it so I'll know how much I've spun. Smart Girl-pup.

Stylle was the next to give me something and here it is. This is a " WIP " tool. You wrap the yarn around it and , after reading the blue card, find out how many " wraps per inch " you have and how fine the yarn is. Good Girl Stylle.

Both girls got together and bought me some new knitting needles ( like I don't have any ). These are KA wooden knitting needles in sizes US 0, US 1, and US 2. They are very fine and have a nice connection between the needle and the cable. I have been looking for these sizes and now I can knit fine gauge sweaters/scarves/mittens without using my teflon-coated metal needles and chasing the yarn all over the place. Nice going girls!!!

Cookies For Everyone!!!!!