Friday, April 30, 2010

Bella & Sable

Or  Why LGD (Livestock Guardian Dogs) are NOT allowed to play with their charges...

This is Bella (English Shepherd) and Sable (Great Pyre X Burmese Mountain Dog mix) relaxing in the backyard with the chickens. 

And the following are Bella and Sable "playing"...

This looks like it may be getting seious!

I think Bella's getting mad!

You might want to break it up, Girls...

There you go, Sable!

No dogs were hurt in the making of this blog post!


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Rest of the Story...

As told by Dazzle...

"You wouldn't believe what Mom did to me!"

"First, she put one of those rope things around my head and drug me out of the pasture..."

"Then, she ties me to the gate and the stupid CHICKENS  were laughing at me!"

"And then she starts ripping my long, soft, gorgeous fleece right off of my body!!!"

"OK.  So it didn't actually hurt, or anything.  But it was still embarrassing!"

"Of course, being the perfect little angel that I am, I stood there calmly and quietly and endured the humiliation of it all"

"Except when Mom tried to pull the wool that was up by my ribs or down by my tummy!  That wool didn't slide right off and I didn't like it when Mom tried to pull it so she left that alone."

"Mom, said we can always get the rest of the wool another day..."

"I'm thinking  NOT !!!"

"I don't see her pulling the wool off of any of the other sheep!  What about Dreamer???  How come Mom doesn't tie HER up and pull HER wool off?"

DREAM says:

"Cuz I'm SPECIAL!"

That you are, Dreamer.  That you are.   But the truth is, I didn't roo your fleece because it isn't ready to be rooed.   It's quite common for a Shetland's fleece to 'release' when the new fleece is starting to grow in.  At that time, the old fleece starts falling out and the shepherd will see chunks of wool hanging from the sheep.  Dazzle had huge chunks of wool just falling off her rear end.  For those who asked, it's not an indication of anything wrong.  In fact, it makes removing the fleece quite easy and it makes for a much cleaner fleece.  I love a fleece that roos easily!

Although Dream's fleece doesn't appear to be ready to roo, I did notice that Alice has quite a few chunks hanging.  I wonder if it has anything to do with the earlier lambing date for some of the girls...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Obsessive Compulsive...

It looks pretty peacefull, doesn't it?

Well, let me tell you:  looks are decieving! 
I went out early, to spend some quiet time with my sheep and snap some photos before the sun got too glaring.  However, what I saw made me absolutely CRAZY...

It wasn't Godiva, lounging peacefully in the shade.

Nor was it Dream or Zorro or even the dogs.
No.  What made me absolutely, completely, uncontrollobly, out of my mind obsessed was


Just LOOK at that!

Could you possibly NOT be compelled to gentle remove large handsful of fleece???

It's literally FALLING off.

I just ran into the house to get a bucket to put the wool in...
MUST roo!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Fresh Pasture...

Sable oversees the move to the side pasture

I always like to turn my girls out onto fresh pasture the last few weeks before lambing begins.  I feel it provides them with the very best nutrition to carry them and their unborn lambs through the final weeks of pregnancy.  That plus the grass is getting long and I don't want to have to mow it!

The lush, green grass is fairly bursting with nutrition

The nineth (and final!) "Alice Watch" will commence the first week of May.  She should lamb around the end of May.  I will keep one lamb and Alice will not be bred again.  She's earned her retirement! 
 I entered "Alice Watch" in the search box on this blog and it brought up a list of all the posts where we talked about waiting for Alice to lamb.  I didn't go through them all but apparently, there are FIVE pages of Alice Watch posts!

Alice's beautiful, Shaela daughter "Destiny"

DREAM says...

"I'm not having MY babies until  the end of JUNE! 
 I'll help you keep an eye on Alice, Mom..."

Thanks Dreamer.  I knew I could count on you!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sheep Retreat...

My good friend Katie W. had a stressful week.  She had to redo FOUR  years of taxes!  Needless to say, Katie 's nerves were a bit frazzled.  Since  she was driving down to the Bluff Country to pick up chicks anyway, I suggested a little "sheep therapy" to soothe Katie's frazzled nerves...

My girls took their job VERY seriously.

"The poor kid looks beat!"

"Tell me all about it...."

We sat out with the ewes for hours!  What a treat.
I'm thinking there might be a business plan here...

DREAM says:

"Will work for cookies."

That's my Dreamer!

We interrupt this regularly (?) scheduled blogcast for a special announcement:
I have been working on hard on a new WEBSITE.  I wanted a site that incorperates  my interest in my beautiful Shetland sheep as well as my flsashy flock of colorful chickens.  Therefore, it is with great pride (and a little nervousness) that I invite you to peruse my new website and give me your feedback.  Any corrections, suggestions, complaints or compliments are welcome!  I've attempted to  add links to the site within this post and will also add a link on the sidebar of my blog.  To be precise, the URL (address) for the new website is:

Friday, April 16, 2010

Miracle in the Bluff Country...

If you've been following this blog for a while (in spite of the Shepherdess's sporadic posting!), you may remember how excited I was about planting my Snow Crab Tree  two years ago.  And how very unhappy I was when my sheep got into the backyard (TWICE)  last summer and girdled it.  Everyone knows that trees can not survive having their trunks girdled (the bark removed in a circle, completely around the trunk.  I had been so excited about planting that tree and so looked forward to the blossoms. ..

Well, it looks like girdling trees doesn't always kill them!

Apparently, the TLC I provided, helped my little tree survive.  I still can't believe it!  Right after the girls chewed the bark off the trunk, I wrapped the trunk in plastic for a week and then removed the plastic and wrapped it with an Ace-bandage for the rest of the summer and fall. 

It's alive!

Somehow, that little tree reminds me of me. 
 It keeps getting beat back. 
It keeps almost not making it. 
It was supposed to die. 
But it keeps coming back. 
It survives.
One of these days, it may even blossom!


In the meantime...

The girls are getting fat.

DREAM says...

"No need to make comparisons to the Shepherdess!:"


Monday, April 05, 2010

Meet My Son...

It was a wonderful Easter!
I spent the afternoon with my oldest daughter Pam (and her husband & three sons!) and my son, Ben.  I don't believe that you've met Ben...

Ben is my "middle" child.  Although I don't know how I could possibly be old enough to have a middle child as old as Ben!

Sable LOVES  Ben.

I think it's because he doesn't yell at her when she climbs up on him to give him kisses!

Pam and Karl brought their new puppy (a tiny "Teddybear") named "Piper" to meet the family.  What a little doll!

SABLE says...

"That little fur ball may be cute but she better stay away from MY  Ben!"


Ben has Cerebral Palsy as a result of a very traumatic delivery and an incompetent obstetrician.  He is unable to walk or feed himself or do most activities that we take for granted.  Yet, he lives on his own.  He owns a mobile home and has home-health-care aides that come in to bathe, feed and dress him and take care of his personal needs.  I am SO proud of my son!  Ben is independent, smart as a whip (he gets that from his Mom!) and a kind and sensitive human being who cares deeply about others.  Ben is proud of all that he has accomplished in spite of his disability and has many friends who contibute to the fact that he has made a good life for himself.

But he won't let me use his nickname on a public forum...

I love you _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _!



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