Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sheep shearing

It comes around every year, just like Christmas, although it's a lot more work than Christmas. I fell into bed last night at 8:47, feeling more exhausted than I could have even imagined. Every muscle was sore, and my feet felt like I had run a marathon.

The top picture shows what the wethers looked like before shearing.

And this is what a couple of the ewes looked like after shearing. They always look so small and naked after they're sheared. That's Cheyenne on the left and Pocahontas on the right. They are both daughters of White Feather, a black ewe with a tiny white streak on her forehead. She was one of the first two ewes I bought, and Pocahontas was one of the first lambs born on Antiquity Oaks.

And here are pictures of Snuggles, our lone Old English Babydoll Southdown before and after shearing. I always say that this is the only five minutes all year that he looks white. Southdowns have such a high lanolin content that every little bit of dust sticks to their fiber. The first year we had Snuggles, we used his wool for spinning, but we quickly learned that it was not as fine and silky as the Shetland. We asked the mill to make it into quilt batts the next year, but then we discovered needle-felting, and we haven't made a quilt yet!

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