Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Goodbye Sarah

I lost a wonderful ewe this weekend, V Creek Sarah.  I know a lot of you know why this ewe was so important to my breeding program.............ie: UK bloodlines, fantastic micron results, etc..., but the real sadness comes from the fact that I truly loved this ewe.  She had a gentle eye and despite the fact that she was pretty flighty when she first came to us last year, she turned into a sweet and friendly soul, and during the last several weeks, I've grown even more fond of her due to her quiet ways and superb mothering, even though her own health continued to fail.  
I thought she had pneumonia, and she did, but it was because she was laying around so much due to her real issue, a pinched nerve which the vet and I believe occurred while she was giving birth.  After 6 weeks of careful nurturing, she just couldn't seem to go on any longer.  It was only at the end that I realized how much pain she was actually enduring, and I vowed to have the vet out the next day to put her down, but she was gone when the sun rose on Sunday.  As I sit here trying to decide if I had done everything I could for this awesome ewe, I realize that I had, and yet I still question if I could have done something sooner that would have tipped the scale to her advantage.  
My only consolation is that I have 2 wonderful ewe lambs from this sheep, Solace, her lamb from last year and Seneca, this year's ewe lamb.  Seneca gently nugged her mom to try to get her to get up on Monday morning and it was darned near my undoing.  I give Seneca extra attention and scratches, in the hopes that will help ease her separation anxiety, but it's still sad to see her wandering around looking for a mom that isn't there.
This shepherdess is too soft hearted for this sort of thing.  Sarah will be buried on the hill over looking the pastures where she may now rest forever.........pain free.  

Sarah and her ewe lamb this spring

Sarah and Seneca

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Say hello to the what's coming to OK Acres from Crosswinds Farm this fall.

So, without further ado, introducing........................THOR

He's lost one of his scurs in this photo, but that's ok, he can shed that other one too and I won't be a bit upset.  (grin) I have become a bit "moorit heavy" at my place and I think this little guy will help rectify that situation nicely.  The fact that I had a mioget and moorit rams last year seems to be the cause of that.  Breed moorit to moorit, and what do you get?  hmmmmmm..........Moorit???  (big grin)  The super duper bonus here is that Thor is a poll carrier.   I still love the look of those majestic horns on a nice ram, but my buildings and gates are grateful for the transition to hornless sheep.  
With 2 spotted rams, I'm hoping to have an entire pasture full of flashy lambs in 2012.  I cannot believe that I just suggested that I'm thinking of spring 2012 already.  sheesh.

Corinne always has wonderful sheep to offer and this year is no exception.  Her honesty and integrity make purchasing Shetlands a extremely pleasant experience.  Thank you Corinne for letting Thor come to OK Acres!!! 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Wool + Dye = FUN!!!

I got my first ever wool dyeing lesson last Saturday and I'm hooked.   A short trip to Arena, WI last weekend with a few friends was the highlight of my week.  I even got a chance to dye my own yarn from one of my gray shetlands!  My beginner attempts are crude, but I can tell you that I had such a great time, I could care less.

My first attempt at dying.  I guess I don't have  much else to say in my defense.  (grin)

This is 100% Shetland yarn from one of my gray sheep over dyed with whatever I felt like throwing on it.

Two kinds of roving, one is merino (not mine-lol)  and some of my gray shetland (on the left) The yarn in the center is a black and white alpaca with some accent colors added.

Both of these are yarns provided by our teacher.  The one on the left is a poly blend done in pastels to show us how this material differs in how it takes dye compared to the Corriedale (sp) yarn on the right.

Well, that's it, now I need to figure out what I'm going to make with so many single skeins of yarn!!!  Maybe , Hats!!!!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Black Gulmoget ram for sale

I love this little gulmoget, but you see he has horns, AND he's related a several of my sheep, so he has to be sold.  OK Acres Sawyer is out of Sheltering Pines Salicional Salicional's pedigree (S22530) X Wintertime Black Forrest. Black Forrest's pedigree (S21917)
Sawyer is one of a set of twins, his sister is a gray Gul/Kat that I am retaining in my flock.  Sawyer has silky fleece that I'm sure will be a single coat, but since Forrest does some funky thing to lamb fleeces, I am torn as to how to classify his fleece at such a young age.  I will continue to evaluate him as he grows.  Anyone interested in being put on a list for him after evaluation, please contact me at okacres@hotmail.com.  And you can simply click on the Sale list tab at the top of my blog for more info.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Ok, I finally noticed this little girl about a week ago.  I have no idea how she got under my radar, but I was sitting by the shed watching lambs and I saw this little gal and thought, "How did I miss how nice you are little girl?"

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Partial sale list

After spending countless hours of sitting in the lot studying sheep, I've come up with a partial list of lambs for sale.  Here is the some of them, in no particular order.  

Left side: OK Acres Miami, moorit blettet ewe out of OK Acres Maggie x  Crosswinds Nantucket FOR SALE $225
Miami has intermdiate fleece , good confimation and is one of a set of triplets.
Right side is OK Acres Barron: Fawn katmoget blettet out of Lil Ctry. Bailey x Sheltering Pines Bug
The ewe is out of horned lines and the ram is out of polled lines, Barron has very tiny horn buds, will be registered pending further evaluation.

Front shot of OK Acres Barron

Chandler, moorit krunet sokket ram and Cadillac,  moorit smirslet sokket ram: Sheltering Pines Ceylon x Sheltering Pines Bug (from polled lines, will probably scur.)  Both are: single coated, dense, consistent fleece and does not fall off.
Chandler will be sold without papers, Cadillac will be registered pending further evaluation.
$350 Cadillac Sale Pending
$175 Chandler
Cadillac will be going to my good friend, Garret at Ramsay Farms

Chandler, running for attention.

Madison: Lil Country Meadow x Sheltering Pines Bug. Fawn katmoget (w/ minor head spots)
ram, polled lines, has tiny bb sized horn buds.  Great conformation, soft, dense, consistent fleece from head to tail.
Will be registered pending further evaluation.

Monroe: Lil Country Meadow X Sheltering Pines Bug. Fawn katmoget (minor spots on head) ram
Polled lines, has tiny horn buds, will probably scur.  Great conformation, soft, dense, consistent fleece from head to tail.
Will be registered pending further evaluation

More shots of Madison and Monroe
Miami, one of Maggie's rams and Aurora.
Far right is Aurora: Sheltering Pines Aster X Sheltering Pines Bug,  dk. moorit  blettet, slight intermediate fleece, soft and dense.  FOR SALE $225

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Lambs showing promise and mini lamb races.......

Below is a picture of Salicional's twins: Salina, a gray kat/gulmoget ewe and Sawyer, a black gulmoget ram. On the left is one of Meadow's rams and in the upper left corner is Bailey, her lamb is off playing  
Salina was born with a dog coat, but I am told that is pretty typical of this line and they have a tendency to turn awesome at 4-5 months old.  Both lambs are pretty good confirmation-wise.  Sawyer is horned and is a very calm personality.  Salicional has that darker smoky blue that I love so much in gray kats, so I'm hoping that Salina will be similar.

This little girl has caught my attention from the minute I saw her standing next to her mom.  Seneca just has that "something" that makes you sit up and take a second look.  She has the perfect white triangle of white on her head and those adorable bands of white on her lower back legs are such a nice touch.  And....she's out of an F1 ewe with a 5 yr mircon of 20.9 AFD and a ram with a 2 yr micron of 18.9 AFD.  I can't wait to see how she turns out as an adult.  For now, she's soft, dense and her conformation is right on.
Sarah's ewe, Seneca. I love this ewe, she's staying.

Solace gave me two spectacular lambs this year and as they mature, I am becoming more impressed.  Both lambs have great fleece, soft, dense and consistent, they are poll carriers on both sides, with the added bonus of possibly carrying spots too.  Both lambs were born with minor white on their heads.  I honestly believe they were a wee bit premature, so they have a bit of catching up to do, but they are filling out nicely and I am crossing my fingers they continue to improve.
Sparta, Solace's ram out of Bug.  Square, poll carrier, spot carrier and the yummiest fleece on the place.
SOLD pending further evaluation
Sierra's fleece.  Runner up for favorite ewe lamb (Solace X Bug)  Her brother, Sparta,  has stunning fleece as well.
The sunlight washed out her fleece, so sorry for the poor photo.

Sparta's fleece close up.  This little guy just gets softer as he ages. 

Sierra again, minor white on head.  I was scratching her and she just laid down. 

Fawn kat (half poll) ram out of Meadow.  Both are exceptional rams, and will be for sale pending further evaluation
Meadow's ram lambs have really impressed me, square little lambs, with dense soft fleece and they both have white on their heads, so I'm assuming they carry spots.  Sire is Sheltering Pines Bug and he's as spotted as they come, with the bonus of incredible fleece.  Meadow and Bug are poll carriers.

Aster's ewe lamb, ( Alexandria)  I'm starting to really pay attention to this little girl, nice consistent fleece throughout.
                                                         Alexandria may be for sale.

Annnndddd, they're off......

This bunch just got freaked out when they pushed the hose out of the water tank.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Random pictures

This is the field just north of our house (no till corn going in the ground)

All this after working 8 hrs someplace else

One of the few windmills I've ever seen that was completely intact without bullet holes in the blades.
As I was driving to knitting on Wed. night of last week, I grabbed my camera and took a few random pictures of things that always catch my eye on that route.   But, before I left the driveway, I just had to get a shot of my hubby engaging in his favorite past time.  As long as there's a tractor, combine, milk truck or large piece of machinery involved, he's in hog heaven.
This is my dream barn................the dream is that this is on my property!!  (sigh)

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Blue funk

This week has been testing me...........my mom once told me, "The Lord will never give you more than you can handle".  I have found these pearls of wisdom to be pretty accurate through the years, my mom gets wiser every year.  (grin)  The reason I bring this up is because the last 4-5 weeks have tested me in a number of ways, and this week seems to have been the time it just kinda caught up with me emotionally.  Turns out, that same phenomenon has been happening to a number of my friends.
I can't speak for the others, but today I woke was laying in bed at 2 a.m. and thinking, "Where did I put that paper that my son needs, did I give that ewe enough antibiotic, and I have to remember to get that A/R report printed for my boss today."  I drift off to lala land for a few minutes and wake up from a bizarre nightmare that hasn't reared it's ugly head since my husband got killed in 1989!!!  Finally, it's 6 a.m. and I give up and just get out of bed.  Just think of all the things I could have gotten accomplished if I had just gotten up at 2 a.m. !!  : ) sigh.
As the day has progressed, I have been reflecting on all the things that bring me joy and the many blessings in my life.   I get to spend another Mother's day with my mother!!! How can that NOT bring me joy?  And no matter how rough life may seem, I always have 100% support of my dear hubby, my son, my parents,  my sister & brother, a huge extended family (ps-I have fantastic in-laws) and my friends.  God chose to bless me with some pretty wonderful people in my life and everything else simply pales in comparison to the love they give me and the love I feel for them.
Happy Wednesday everyone,

Monday, May 02, 2011

Naked sheep and spring flowers

Another busy weekend, sheep shearing, hoof trimming and lawn mowing.  Technically, I didn't do any shearing, but I did the hoof trimming and my body is complaining about that loudly.  This is probably the latest I've ever done shearing, but the rain and my shearers schedule kept pushing the date back further and further.  It turns out that the sheep really did need their fleece in April, so I don't mind too much, I just hope they have enough growth in case I want to take someone to WSWF this fall.
Yesterday afternoon I strolled around the yard and took pictures of new growth and spring flowers, so I'll sprinkle a few of those shots in here too.  Please ignore any weeds that may have found their way into the pictures, THAT will have to wait for my body to heal and another sunny weekend.  (grin)
Sawyer will be for sale after further evaluation
Salicional x Forrest

Splash of spring............

How did that chicken get here?
Cole and Bug (BS: before shearing)

Sparta (sold)  polled ram out of Solace X Bug

Emily and  Alabama

Sawyer and Terri

Sparta's hornless head

Madison's hornless head (for sale) Fawn kat carrying spots out  Meadow and Bug

Cole, Mike and Bug

Sierra is being retained, Solace X Bug 

My favorite thing!!!

Naked sheep

John (my nephew) and Bug (AS: after shearing)

This is one of the many trees we planted last year.  
Meadow X Bug (2 fawn kat rams that are hard to fault, fleece is spectacular
One with horn buds and one without.  (both will be for sale after further evaluation)

Tiny tree in the shadow his mature elder.   (planted 30 of these last year)

My favorite rooster.......a couple easter eggers, one black prduction hen and a speckled sussex.

Mike and I

Mike and I
Mike and I at Nick and Emily's wedding

Raised beds & chickens coops

Raised beds & chickens coops
Can't wait for this stuff to actually be food....