Monday, February 22, 2016

Ice Sickles All Around

Tuesday morning we awoke to snow blanketing the ground and the goats excited for the breakfast that suddenly lay at their feet. The temperature was warm and the day beautiful. We decided to take a trip to see ice sickles. I couldn't wait to share them with the younger boys. So, a trip to Old Man's Cave was quickly decided.

It was a quick trip, but well worth it. We had so much fun slipping down hills, touching icy moss, and having a snowball fight. I especially enjoyed the kids' excitement as they pointed out all the ice crystals.We left soaked, tired, and hungry, but thankful that we got to spend the day enjoying God's beautiful creation. It won't be long before the ice is melted in the cavern. These warmer winter days are the perfect time to take a trip to see the beautiful ice sickles. Make sure none fall on you though :)

By Saturday evening, the snow at home was melted and the ground a muddy mess - Two beautiful opposites - signs that spring is nearing.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Summer - Where has time gone? This must be the fastest summer ever. As I reflect back and prepare for this year of learning, I'm trying to focus on all the fun and summer learning we've experienced. We spent less time in water than our typical summer: swimming, fishing, wading - did we even play in the creek. I don't recall going hiking. I don't think we even spent much time visiting friends. We've made wonderful memories though. July and August were filled with camp, canoeing, playing in the garden, fair, helping others, and exploring at home. Home is becoming our focus this season. And will be this next season to come. I think I like it that way. Sometimes, we need to slow down and focus on home - being together - family.



As our summer adventure is coming to an end, we look forward to a family vacation, and one more camp for the older kids. Then, we'll settle in and prepare for winter - starting with filling that wood shed, above. But, for now, we're enjoying these last warm days of summer as we soak up the sun and ponder at God's creation around us.
All while focusing on home - being together - family.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Shearing Day

We had an incredibly busy day. It started with barn chores and rotating animals to our front yard. Then Hannah and I grabbed the clippers and worked on shearing the sheep. We are certainly not professionals. It took us 45 minutes to work on two little Shetlands. Have you seen YouTube videos of people shearing?! They're fast! When we had a small flock of sheep, we hired a shearer to come out, but it's really not worth it to come and shear two sheep. A dear friend gifted us her clippers, so we put them to use. We've been reaching the upper 80's lately, and these little sheep have been hot. They were past due for a good clipping.
Look at all that fleece. I wanna lay on Felix's back and cover up with his fleece. It's beautiful. Hannah and I had soft hands after handling all that fleece and lanolin.

We started on the goat stand, then flipped them to work the belly side. Hannah sheared Felix. I sheared Tiptoe.
 Felix has a nice white fleece.
Hannah shaved the sheep last year, so she's getting pretty good. Felix looks great. This was my first time shearing sheep, so Tiptoe looks funny. She could use a bit more trimming around the face. That's what she gets for not being very cooperative with me.

Once the sheep were sheared, I put them to pasture and started working on skirting and cleaning the fleece.

I decided to wash Felix's white wool. It turned out really nice. But, it took hours to get it all washed. There are some small flecks of hay left in the wool, but I'm hoping that it will pop out as I comb it. I'm still looking for a reasonable place to purchase combs, or possibly make combs. It will be fun to finish this fleece and turn it into roving. Tiptoe has a pretty tan fleece. I'm excited to get busy working with hers.

Not only did the sheep get a nice clipping, but Hannah's 4H goat and our dog, Abbey got clipped. They look cooler and nicely groomed.  

Once the wool was washed, it was time to load the horses on the trailer and head to a 4H meeting. We caught Da pulling in just as we were leaving. He, thankfully parked the car and drove the truck to the meeting. As we were driving we smelled the brakes and noticed black smoke coming from the trailer. We made it to the meeting and back home and decided to take the trailer to a friend for repairs. As we headed over, the brakes locked up while nearing an intersection. Da was able to do a quick fix by unplugging the electrical line to the trailer. We dropped it off to be repaired and headed home after a long day of working with animals.
Annie and Fred. Fred came last week. We'll write more about him later.
I am so very thankful that Danny noticed the smoke coming from the trailer and called to have it repaired. I am thankful that he drove with me, especially since I was a little nervous hauling two horses together. They did great and were well behaved! And, I am thankful that there were no horses on the trailer when the brakes locked up. Mostly, I'm thankful for my husband, who was there to take care of all the problems as they happened.