Friday, March 22, 2013

Kipcha delivers triplets!! Hank, sewing room and books

Well, my last blog I posted a picture of my very pregnant  ewe, Kipcha.  On  March 20th between the hours of 1:36 AM and 6AM she delivered her triplets without trouble. 1 ewe lamb and two ram lambs.  But she had tapped her stores of calcium to make those three baby  skeletons,  she was tired out and low in calcium. When a ewe or doe is carrying allot of babies, it is almost impossible for the ewe to eat enough, due to the kids/lambs taking up so much room.  Especially so if the ewe is overweight.   Which Kipcha is not, thank goodness.
 She received supplemental calcium yesterday, and this morning is up chewing cud and tending to her babies.  I have been supplementing the babies with goat milk three times daily as we wait for Kipcha's milk to come in.  But with three lambs to feed, I will continue to supplement the lambs.  I keep the ewes in a "lamb jug" for a week after they deliver, it is a small pen where the mom and babies can be monitored, and lets the little ones grow some before they are let back in with the rest of the females.  As sometimes, the other females will butt the babies around, especially if the newborns think there is milk to be had from each mother.  The mothers really don't appreciate this.
Here is a picture of Kipcha in the "jug" with two of her lambs, the other lamb is standing by me. 

My ewe Easter gave us a very pretty colored ram lamb who we call Hank. He is chocolate brown with half a white tail, and some white on his two back feet. Oh, and his scrotum is white, now how cool is that! Also he is an RR ram who is resistant to scrapie. We probably will be keeping this little fellow. here is Hank with his mother Easter.
The tags in the ears are the white is a scrapie tag required by the Government so every animal can be traced to the farm of origin.  The yellow tag in the left ear is his flock ID tag that matches the Katahdin Hair Sheep International registration, since all my sheep are registered.
So now we are up to 6 lambs, and 2 more ewes left to deliver.  We are also expecting Nubian goat babies out of two does in April.  It will be a busy spring for us this year.

I have not been able to sew much the past week or so, as I have been on baby watch. But I did manage to make a quilted "hoodie" for my featherweight. I like to keep the dust out of my sewing machines when not in use. Since the wind blows here so much, there always seems to be dust.

My friend Debbie sent me an excellent book to read called Half Broke Horses A true Life Novel written by Jeannette Walls.  This is a story about the authors Grandmother Lily Casey.  Lily is a strong independent women ranching/teaching/adventure seeker living in Arizona.  It is a must read, especially for my friends and family down in Arizona.  Wish I still lived there so I could check out some of the places that this gal wrote about.

Our weather radio started alarming and flashing at 6AM this morning.  We are expecting another 6-12 inches of snow starting tonight.  Our local radio station predicts we will get this depending on what weather station you listen to, or we could get sunshine and 50 degree weather.  Oh well.

More later.....................................................................................................

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Writers block, daughters move, Lily and Katy, and first lambs of the season

Wow!  I have had writers block for the last couple of months, or just not anything worthy of writing about, or just too busy.

We helped move our daughter Tera and grandson Brady from Denver to Greeley. So glad she lived on ground floor, as it took us quite a time to recover.  Tera had a job transfer.  They are now living in a condo, with allot more room than their previous apartment.  And so nice light and airy.
Brady has made a few friends in his new high school and is settling in nicely.  Tera likes her new job, the co-workers, and sure does not miss the hustle and bustle of the big city.  Not to mention the crime, and time on the freeways.  We are so happy to have the both of them only 26 miles from us, vs 95 miles.  We got together this past weekend, to watch a  movie, eat pizza, and Tera showed me how to work facebook.  A really nice afternoon on a wintry day.

Lily( I call her my little snow princess) turned 3 the first of March, and Katy was baptised.  The other grandparents came down from South Dakota for these events.  It was so nice to see them.  Lily sure enjoyed their visit,  Katy became reacquainted with Joan, as Joan helped take care of her for her first 6 weeks of life.

We have 5 ewes due this spring, and 2 goats are due  in April.  The first ewe had her twin ewe lambs yesterday.  One smoky Hershey colored lamb, and one white lamb.  I will have to try and find out what color this dark ewe is called. 
This ewe is the next to go I would suspect.  Her name is Kipcha and she is standing near the red feeder.  She Looks like she will have triplets, or two huge lambs.  Oh, we had snow yesterday, a few inches, but it supposed to warm up into the 50's by the weekend.

I figured out that I have made 31 baby quilts since we have lived here 3 years.  Just love to make them.  Here is my latest that I made for a family members new baby.
I have also been busy making totes, since they are so easy to whip up, and use up some of my stash.
I also bought a Featherweight sewing machine.  I hope to finally attend some quilting retreats and the featherweight is the perfect portable for transporting, and piecing of quilts in the classroom setting.  It is a 1951 model,(as old as Dennis, and should last a lifetime) made of aluminum, and weighs 11 lbs, 8 1/2 inches high and 11inches wide. I have been obsessed about taking this machine apart and looking at its workings.  It is so cute.  My mother used to have one of these.

Oh my gosh!  I have read some fantastic books since December.  Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, a suspenseful thriller about a psychopath.  The Sandcastle Girls by Chris Bohjalian, about the Armenian genocide.  Mudbound by Hillary Jordan, loved this book, a connection between a black and white family in the Mississippi Delta in the 1940's, farm life.
The Devil's Highway and   Across the Wire:Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border, by Luis Alberto Urrea. Both of these books were real eye openers for me, having lived just 80 miles north of the border when we lived in Arizona.   Dreams of Joy by Lisa See, about life and hard times in Red China during the 50's. 

...............................................More later.