Sunday, August 31, 2008

Just some random shots....

Sat down in my pasture taking pics of whomever showed up....

This is the typical shot (or closer) that I get of Claire.....'cmon give me a skritch!

The guineas had some youngsters "in tow"

I love how all my "critters" get along and can graze side by side......

and now just some random shots of sheep and chickens.....

Rechel, the proud, Call of the Wild, Shetland....

Janelle, the "elder" Jacob ewe.....


Kenleighs Pacifica......

Stonehavens Ilse........

It's unfortunate for me that Jacobs and Shetlands get along so well! :) (Bella, Gypsy and Sasha)

Until next time........

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Whew! What a relief!!

Jasmine, my donkey, came up limping one day. I noticed she had a couple of dings and figured she might have taken a spill and had pulled something. I rubbed some liniment on her legs and doctored up her injuries and she seemed to get better.

That lasted for a day or two and then she got worse. Limping and not using her right front foot at all. I felt her foot for heat wondering if it was an abscess but didn't notice any real heat. I called and made an appt for the Vet to come out.

Meanwhile I noticed that her fetlock looked swollen and puffy. Panic set in, I began thinking the worse. I almost didn't get any sleep laying there wondering what was wrong. I told Jasmine that I had the best Veterinarian there was coming out to look at her and that he would make her feel better. She was SO stoic!

Dr. Haffner came out at 10 am, I hadn't seen him since selling my wonderful MFT horse, Blue. He said he always thought abscess until proven otherwise and sure enough, that's what it was. Jasmine was SO good she just stood there while he carved away at her foot.

The abscess was towards the toe but he said it had undermined the sole of her foot too. He couldn't believe how good she was because he said these were the most painful kinds of abscesses. She also stood quietly to get a tetanus shot and a shot of bute. He also checked her teeth and all the while she wasn't even restrained.

He said other than Alice (another spotted donkey he took care of) Jasmine was THE nicest donkey he had ever met. :)

He gave me some paste bute to give her a little each day and wrapped her foot in duct tape after cleaning it out real good. I was almost giddy I was so happy that it was just an abscess!

Jasmine is under lock down for a couple of days but then she should be back to "good as new".

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

New faces, familiar faces and a visitor

Thought I would take some pics of the latest additions to prove to that they were still alive and well! :) Also, a few established faces and a visitor, Mud Ranch Packard, who will be going to his new home this weekend with Mary Tonkin of Shadow Mountain Jacobs.

Here's some pics of Rechel and Bevin, as well as Bella who seemed to recognize some old friends.

You can tell which one is Rechel....she is the regal looking one that just exudes that "I've been a wild and woolly sheep and lived to tell the tale" stance. :) You almost expect her to throw back her head and howl.....or at least baa with authority.

Right here I should probably apologize for the VM in everyones wool. I'd like to blame it all on Rena, the llama....but I'm just as guilty as I'm carrying it out to the pasture.

Next is Mud Ranch Constance, my new four horn (nub? for some reason my four horn girls like to knock off their horns...) lilac ewe lamb, speaking of presence, this girl really has a way about her.

Some other lovely, more familiar faces, Stonehavens Ilse and Flora, Shadow Mountain Sasha, and Sheep Ridge (Call of the Wool) Aurora.....

and last but definitely not least is the "visitor" a handsome lilac ram lamb, Mud Ranch Packard.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Mama never told me there would be days like THESE!

So.....the day started out innocently enough, but it had just lured me into a false sense of security.

Michelle started to give me directions and then I just though, heck I'll see what the GPS does (I know, you'd think I'd know better by now.....). Came up to a ferry crossing (oh, yeah, that's the one that Michelle said she didn't like to take with a trailer.....) waited to board this small ferry for a short water crossing. It went off without a hitch, whew!

Soon I'm on I-5 heading north at a good is good.....

Portland....traffic starts slowing down, then crawling. Once over the bridge and into WA it picked up again but the thrill was short lived. Just south of Chehalis it again slowed to a crawl, then stopped.

I called home to see Guerdon had heard anything about accidents or traffic. He hadn't but then he called back and said they said it was solid all the way to McChord AFB and then again for Tacoma Mall past the Tacoma dome.

After crawling along for awhile I decided Kylie and I needed a "potty stop".

Once we were done with that I got this "brilliant" idea! My GPS has a button for detour for when the traffic is bad. So punched that and headed off on a country road breezing along....ha, ha, ha, what the!..... it seems that there are a few GPS owners out there, especially the folks with motor homes. Back to a standstill. Slowly creeping thru Yelm, picked up speed again once on the highway to Puyallup and made pretty good time from there home.

Considering I should have been home by 5pm I guess 9:30Pm isn't as bad as it could have been.

The fun was just beginning though! Because it was so late, Mary decided to pick her ram lamb up next weekend, and because it was so late, so dark and I was SO tired I decided to not try and back my truck and trailer down the narrow road to the barn.

Another brilliant idea...back the trailer up to the top of the hill, open the door and coax the sheep down the hill with grain. If I had been thinking clearly I would have realized that no sheep in their right mind is going to follow a stranger in the dark down to a place they can't even see in the dark no matter how much baaing from the other sheep is going on.

Nawwwww, I think we'll just hang out by the house they said to me. Guerdon and Finn decided to try and slowly move them back towards me so I might get them down the hill. They decided to take a short cut and came over the hill through the brush. At least they were heading in the right direction....Constance decided to do her deer impression and did a nice little leap off one of the ledges.... I hope she concluded that she should remain a she was flying thru the air she went sideways and landed on her side. She hopped up shook herself off and looked at me like "I meant to do that!".

Finally heading into the paddock.....we're home free.....nope.....Rechel decides to heed the Call of the Wild and bursts through the trees and on through our hot wire to the wilds beyond.

Got everyone else settled into the paddock, turkettes in a stall in the barn, and tried to call Rechel back. All I could hear was crashing brush and splashing water. In between great bursts of cussing I decided that it could be dangerous for me to go looking for her as there was lots of drop offs and bogs in that area.

Unloaded the truck and then realized I couldn't go to bed without giving it a try to locate her. Armed with a flashlight (and would later wish I had a cell phone or at least my compass), my Border Collie and clothed in my polar fleece I head out into the night in the pouring rain.

The area that Rechel went into is comprised of almost nothing but blackberries, stinging nettles and bogs. Finn and I picked a spot and started crawling thru the blackberries.

After awhile I think we ended up going around in circles. I couldn't see anything, even above me was covered with blackberries, only giving me a glimpse of sky. It seemed everywhere we went we encountered a bog, I attempted a few of these, sunk up to my knee and almost lost my shoes a few times.

I started looking at dry patches thinking I could curl up, go to sleep and wait for it to get light. I looked at Finn, "if you were anything like Lassie you would go and get help, or at least show us the way home". He'd start off when I'd say "Go home, Finn" then stop and look at me as if to say "I like it a lot better when you break the trail". Seeing as I was soaked to the skin and it was still down pouring I decided I should keep trying to get home. I finally found an area that went up-hill and followed that. Eventually we came out to the power lines and I knew where I was then.

Slogging along, we arrived at home. The other dogs barked and snarled at us, which now really doesn't surprise me as I'm sure I looked like something from the Creature From the Black Lagoon........

I know we had to smell different from wallowing around in the bogs, and judging from the muddy tracks (after I took my shoes off!) going across the hardwood floor not to mention the moss and branches I left behind wherever I walked I would have made an interesting picture (if only Guerdon wasn't sound asleep).

By then it was midnight. I have to get up at 3am in the morning to feed and make it to work by 5;30am. I laid there trying not to rub all my stinging nettle welts and blackberry scratches, wondering where Rechel could be and if she was ok. Needless to say I didn't get much sleep.

The alarm went off and by that time I had decided to stay home from work at least until it got light and I could find out what happened to Rechel. Headed down the hill and what do you know! There she was standing on the other side of the no-climb gazing across at the other sheep.

I went back up and turned the hot wire off, locked the dogs up and got a sheep halter. Back thru the blackberries and stinging nettle, crawled thru the hot wire and started coaxing....."Rechel, here you lovely little ewe...... She stomped her feet gave me a look that said " I AM THE WILD AND WOOLY SHEEP" and off thru the woods she sprang. I was about to give up when she circled around and came up to the fence again.

(ok, no this isn't Rechel.....) :)

I started creeping forward, talking softly, pleaded with her and got within 6 feet. She stomped her foot again and I think muttered more that shouted "I'm the wild and woolly sheep" and then looked a bit tired. I took one step closer then sprang and encircled her with my arms. She didn't struggle much and soon had her halter on.

She followed me up the hill, I held the hot wire apart, put first one of her front feet then the other and pushed her bum thru. Success!!! She happily trotted towards Bevin and the two Jacobs and I swear I saw her heave a sigh of relief.....well, maybe that was me. :)

Last sheep aquisition trip of the year.....maybe. :)

Left Sat. morning for Eugene. Stopped at the usual McDonalds to get Kylie her plain cheeseburgers (gotta make hanging with me for the whole weekend worthwhile somehow!).

Met my sister, Cheryl and her husband, Ron at the residence where my Mom lives. Everyone there has Alzheimers or Dementia of some degree. My Mom hasn't know who we are for awhile now....I take that back I think she recognizes me but she doesn't know my name. We wheeled her around the courtyard and the warmth started to make her go to sleep so we took her back inside. We talked to her for awhile, I held her hand, and then she started to doze off again....could have been the stimulating conversation.....:) so we decided to go to lunch at McGraths fish house.

The young man we had as a waiter had a bit of difficulty that day. First he dropped our appetizer all over the floor, so we had to wait for the replacement. Then on the way with our lunches he dropped them too. Actually we heard a crash, and my sister said, "That isn't who I think it is?" I said I thought so from what I could see then he came over and said "You'll never guess what happened" wasn't too hard to figure out, especially with the cocktail sauce all over his apron. :) Needless to say buy the time we got out of the restaurant it was getting later than planned (we did get a free dessert out of it though!). Gave my sister a hug and headed to Shannons to spend the night.

Got to Shannons and we decided to take our dogs for a walk. Went to a great park by her and she brought her beautiful whippets. I fell in love with her new puppy, Danica (not that Paisley wasn't sweet too) :) Shannons son, Theron, was very friendly and wanted to help out a lot. He definitely has the love of animals that his Mom has!

I ended up going to bed early, as I was tired from the drive. Awake at 6am, Kylie and I got packed up. As I was in the bedroom (of the guest cottage) I heard this splashing noise. Went out to the main room to see Kylie dropping her ball in the water dish. I should have known better than to have a ball indoors.....she did the exact same thing at Lois' and made a mess of her kitchen!

The morning light playing over the hill surrounding Shannons farm was beautiful. I enjoyed the peacefulness of it all with the sheep softly baaing.

Next stop Camilles for turkey replacements. For those of you that haven't heard my two turkey boys were stolen. I know that no predator got them because they were both gone and there wasn't a single feather left behind. It made me angry and sad to think that they wound up on a platter or in some sandwiches. :( We walked around looking at my options and even though I liked two older boys she had a chose 3 youngsters. I hoping to get the security in place before they are old enough to look like a meal.

Last stop before heading home, Michelles. Michelles home resides in beautiful hill country with trees, orchards and vineyards all around. From her home you get a lovely view of the valley though they have some fir trees that block the mountain (Hood) part of the view.

I was greeted at the front door with a rousing rapid fire bark from her Aussie, Jackson. Michelle came out with a smile and Jackson decided I was ok. We let Kylie out of the truck and Jackson was an instant hit with her. They went tearing around the property having a good old time (I'm sure it felt good for her to stretch her legs).

I met her son, Brian, who had a winning smile and acted if we'd known each other (probably from stories he heard from his Mom. Probably thought I was one of those insane sheep women!) forever.

We looked at the ewes, then the wethers and Bevin. We took Inky to her stall, which I'm sure she was relieved to get out of the trailer with those crazy Jacobs! :) Then Brian took me to introduce me to his horse. It made me miss the sweet horse breath as his gelding checked me out.

We went to the house for the papers, and I was treated to a concert by Brian on his violin. He also plays the piano, quite the talented young man! We then took his remote control helicopter out to a pasture and I was given a show with that, amazing the toys they have nowadays! Wish I had something like that growing up.....never too late I guess!

Loaded up Bevin and Rechel, Brian gave hugs to Bevin and he didn't want me especially to take Bevin but also wanted Rechel to stay. Michelle tried to explain to him that there would be new lambs next year that could stay.....I don't think she was very convincing!

As I headed down the drive I was thinking about how nice this little weekend trip had been little did I know that I was heading for the day from HE double hockey sticks!!

To be continued..........

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Sunset at Wrensong Farm

I rarely take the time to stop and appreciate our view, but the sunset definitely caught my eye this evening.

Sprites Great Adventure-Belgian Landscape Artist Extraordinaire

I probably should have known better than to name Kylie the registered name of Sprites Great Adventure....though everything IS an adventure to her (and besides it had to be a "G" name). Anyway I'm turning this one over to her.......

HI! My name is Kylie and I'd like to show you my latest work of art! Come over here with me....
There used to be this boring patch of grass. I tried improving on it by giving it different texture. Mom said it looked reminiscent of a bomb field. She has no appreciation, really! Anyway, I found these plants, randomly planted in some dirt and in my minds eye I could see them as a real statement in front of the house. See what you think......

It will really look lovely once the grass starts greening up again and the plants fill out a little........

I also had to do some it may take awhile for these plants to fill out.

NOW, take a look at the boring area I removed them from:

Next, my challenge will be to find something that is just begging to be transplanted to this landscaping opportunity.....

Until next time, this is Kylie, Belgian Landscape Artist Extraordinaire saying "Au Revoir"!