21 February 2009

Shearing Day

CVM Romeldale fiber--Just look at the natural colors!

Just looking at this fiber makes my feet tap in tune with the imagined rhythm of my spinning wheel and my fingers itch to get started on knitting projects that have been waiting for this beautiful fiber. Shearing day on our farm is the culmination of my mother's hard work. Twelve months of making sure the sheep are properly coated and cared for. Twelve months of chasing them through pastures and luring them closer with sweet alfalfa hay for "photo shoots" and chin scratches.

We call this Butterball Alley--they won't be butterballs for long!
The morning of shearing day we remove the ewe's coats and herd them into a side alley of the barn. From there they will be escorted one at a time onto a clean bed sheet (to catch their valuable fleece), sheared, and then released to dash through a layer of fresh straw spread out in an adjacent paddock. None of the ewes dash too much, however, they are all expecting lambs in a little over a month.

Julia & Penny

For the first time we can see their pregnant bellies, which have been hidden under fiber and canvas all fall and winter, and admire the unique color of their fleeces. Very pretty mamas.

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