Just a few photos of the wonderful ram, Lucky, who helped us with our breeding this autumn. He is a Border Leicester/Coopworth cross.
(His father was our first BL ram, Mr. Fright, and his mother was one of our first Coopworth ewes, Tess). Just an all around hunky guy, with a big, gorgeous fleece. I am looking forward to some of the little Mr. Luckys to come!
Thankful for the lovely Thanksgiving weekend, amongst many other things. We shared a truly wonderful dinner with our son, grandson and our neighbor Susie. Once dinner was on the table, I totally forgot to get the camera out, but I did remember to take a picture of the almost-set table and the turkey!
The bird came from our friends at Bridge Farm, and it is a very tasty bit of poultry! A 21 lb beauty. I love Thanksgiving and the fact that all the hooplah happens right at the beginning of the 4 day break instead of at the end :*)
More enjoyable loafing, and the table is actually cleaned of junk mail and other oddments, at least for a brief period of time…
Breeding time has pretty much come and gone. All of our girls have been marked by Lucky, the crossbred ram that was born on our farm and then went to live at Hatchtown Farm (he was destined to go to the butcher as a market lamb, but he had had pneumonia and none of us thought he would really grow… but guess what? He did! That’s why he’s “Lucky”). He is a very, very sweet boy, and even though I always watch over my shoulder when I am in an enclosure with a ram or a buck, Lucky is such a sweetie that I am always able to just relax and enjoy being with the girls and their guy. He never fails to come up and sniff my hands, just in case I have a hidden treat, and then he’ll walk away.
So it’s that time of year when things start to slow down outside, and we can now go into the winter, dreaming of the beautiful lambs and kids we will be having come next March and April. As much as I really hate losing the daylight, I do appreciate the turn of the seasons. And then hard on the heels of Thanksgiving is Hanukkah this year, which I always love for its images of light, renewal and hope. And then we have the winter solstice, when we can start watching the almanac and counting the minutes of daylight that we re-gain every day! And so it goes, as Linda Ellerbee always said :*)
Aside from reading a whole lot of wonderful young adult and middle grade fiction these days, I have been reading some of Stephanie Pearl-McPhee’s books. Of YarnHarlot blog fame, she is a very funny writer and uses a lot of self-deprecating humor to talk about knitting and life. Everything she knits looks beautiful to me and I find a lot of inspiration there. Her books take a more in-depth look at some of her knitting endeavors and they really qualify as some of my all-time favorite reads. If something is funny enough to get me laughing so hard that my husband sits up in bed and asks what’s wrong, it can’t be bad! I am almost finished with Yarn Harlot:The Secret Life of a Knitter. Very funny indeed.
Part of all this reading and knitting has to do with the fact that I have been pretty sick with a chest cold this past week and a half. Stay home a few days, go back to work and then have to stay home again, etc. But, it’s given me some time to get some knitting done as well. I was able to make two hats with some of our beautiful Coopworth worsted weight natural grey.
The button-tab hat (pattern found on a blog called I Like Lemons) I just love, but I ended up giving it to someone with long hair who needs to tuck in her ponytail. It was too big for me, now that I have short hair. Since I knit that one first, I had my husband try it on to check the gauge and the size from forehead to crown. It was a little big on him as well, so I knit one on size 6 needles instead of 7s. He also wanted a fold-up brim. So this is what I came up with. It’s really cozy, warm and soft.
I have been feeling as though we are living through a second mud season this year. We have had so much rain and so many warm days and nights, doing chores means doing battle! It’s about this time of year that John usually gets to cleaning out the paddocks, but a whole host of things have pushed that back a little. We are replacing our “temporary” set of back steps with the real thing, which is quite the relief. John and a friend have been working on that so the paddocks remain a mess for now. When the nights start getting consistently cooler the ground will firm up, but when we keep getting 2-3″ of rain in a day or two, it just doesn’t seem right.
In the midst of all this muddy fun, Jim and Pam of Hatchtown Farm decided to get a whole piggie out of their freezer to make some room. And they invited a whole bunch of nice people over to share in their pig roast this past Sunday! I think the plan had been to have most of the afternoon outside near the big roaster, but (what a surprise) it was raining again, or at least cold, damp, and about to rain again. (It did start to rain late in the afternoon, so I was very glad the party was moved inside). There was a lot of wonderful food and it was very good to see some of our farmer friends socially. They were able to borrow or rent an oil drum roaster, and the pork was delicious. Everything was delicious… I should have taken a photo of the groaning table! Getting out of the house for such a pleasant afternoon is such a nice change from slogging through the mud and working at all of those things on the “to do” list.
Coopworth Fiber, LaMancha Dairy Goats and Cheese on the Coast of Maine!