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animal kingdom / DAILY FARM LIFE / favorites / RAISING SHEEP
It seems hard to believe that I’ve yet to share this huge news for our family with all of you. I think I’ve been pretty tight-lipped on the whole thing because there were so many steps leading up to it, so many things that needed to happen first, that I wasn’t letting myself get completely excited until I knew it was really, truly going to happen.
At the beginning of next month we will be leaving Woodlawn and moving just a few minutes up the road to my grandfather’s farm.
I hinted at this on Instagram several weeks ago and so many people were stunned. After hearing the story of how we ended up at Woodlawn it was hard for them to believe that we’d be leaving. I totally understand.
animal kingdom / DAILY FARM LIFE / RAISING SHEEP
Today’s live sheep shearing on Facebook got me all nostalgic. Before the shearer arrived, I found myself flipping through the files in my big, brown metal filing cabinet searching for the folder where I tucked away all the information on our sheep. Inside I found the registration papers and receipts I’ve tucked away for the last several years. Mostly, I was digging around for birthdates. In my head I’ve known that Penny was getting pretty old for a sheep, but I wanted to remember exactly how old. Nine years. The sweet girl–grandmother to some of the lambs on our farm–is starting her ninth year. You can see it in the sag of her hips and the softness of her eyes. She’s the one each morning who stays by my hip when we make the walk from the stalls in the barn out to the pasture. While everyone else runs ahead rebelliously to get a few mouthfuls of grass before we get to the field, she keeps her pace with mine. Always right beside. Quiet. Calm. She’s my sweet girl.
Flipping through those papers and birth certificates and and sheep association memberships, I decided I needed to revisit how the lambs came to live with us. I’m so glad I took a moment to look back. Because some days it’s hard to see past much more than the morning chores and feed bills and middle-of-the-night worries. It was good for me to remember how long I patiently (and not so patiently) waited for my girls to have a small flock of sheep all their own. Just like me, when I was a little girl.
Here’s the story of how it all came to be.
There’s an old VHS video clip I have of my grandmother, walking out to her sheep in the pasture, “Hello, girls.” she calls to them in that voice I miss hearing. Immediately, they respond–a mix of warbled baa’s from lambs who have their lips pressed to the earth ripping out clumps of grass and others strong and clear who already noticed her coming. Deep throaty baa’s of mama ewes who know her voice so well.
I always hoped I would be wearing my barn clothes on my live debut on Facebook. Even better if I’m sweating uncontrollably. And this afternoon BOTH of those “dreams” are coming true. I’m taking over the TodaysMama Facebook page and we’ll be shearing the sheep LIVE. I’m crazy, aren’t I?
Full disclaimer: We’re having some internet issues out in the barn, but we’re going to give it a go and hope it doesn’t get too pixelated and slow.
And I’m crossing my fingers that the sheep behave themselves, sit perfectly for the shearer and don’t make too much of a fuss while we expose their beautiful white bellies. I’m telling you, it will be like a therapy session watching all this wool come off. You won’t want to miss it.
I’ll be answering your burning questions about chores, sheep, life on the farm and hoping for a miraculously great cellular signal in the middle of the barn.
We hope to be online around 4:30pm eastern, but I’m one of many stops on the shearer’s list today, so I’m at her mercy. Come find us and hang out!
Today’sMama Facebook page // And I’ll make an announcement here on my Facebook page, too!