Thursday, April 3, 2008

Time to Take Off That Winter Coat!

Before
During

After
Last Sunday, we went to see the local Semi-Annual Shearing of the Sheep. It was cold and wet and windy. One of those early Spring days that reminds you that winter is not in the too distant past. In my opinion, it was a absolutely terrible day to have to part with a perfectly good wool coat:) But the sheep didn't mind. I was amazed at how docile they were. They laid perfectly still and let the shearer do his work. When he was finished, he would step back and this was the sheep's signal to get up and go hopping and jumping all the way to the pasture. It seemed they were very pleased with their new hair cuts.
The Shearer removed the pelts of some 40 odd sheep in two days, which convinced me that while I would love, love, love to raise sheep for there wool, there is NO power on earth that could convince me to be a Sheep Shearer!!! Talk about your back breaking labor....notice how the shearer is bent over the sheep in the second photo...he stayed like that the whole time we were there, now imagine doing that for two solid days!!! Not to mention that if I stand with my head down like that for more than a couple of minutes, I start to see spots before my eyes from all of the blood rushing to my head. Geesh! I don't know how he did it.
After the wool pelt was removed, it was placed on a platform where a nice lady picked out all of the bits of debris. The upside of this job is that it is like a conditioning treatment for your hands, all of the lanolin in the wool works to soften and smooth your fingers as you go. Now this job, I could do:) I almost volunteered, but then I caught sight of a lady spinning yarn out of Angora rabbits' hair and I had to go and get the lowdown on this process. Sorry I did not get a picture of her, I was too busy talking and dreaming of my own little bunny farm where I could raise cute little furry darlings and collect there fur to spin~don't worry Honey, it is just a dream....for now anyway;)
My son fell in love with the sheep hearding dog. It was a beauty with multi colored eyes and very gentle. He would just pet it and talk to it. Lately, he has been asking for a puppy....maybe soon?
So, I hope everyone is having a nice week. I'll be by for a cuppa later.
~Rhonda

17 comments:

bj said...

How interesting all this must have been. Thanks for sharing...
hugs, bj

BittersweetPunkin said...

How neat Rhonda!! Love the photos!!
Stop by and see me tomorrow....
Hugs,
Robin

ohiofarmgirl said...

I love sheep. My fil always would have our children come over when they were lambing and shearing. It was always so exciting. He also had a beautiful black lamb that we all loved. I'm sorry to say that he has now sold all the sheep so he could retire. Dianntha

Mary Isabella said...

I bet this was fun and interesting....Mary

Cottage Contessa said...

Sounds like you had a great day Rhonda, lots of fun for your little boy to see! Hope you have a great weekend sweetie!
Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

Back Through Time said...

I just wondered the other day if the sheep are relieved to have their coats off or if they get chills, lol.
Have a great weekend!
Michelle

Debbie said...

What fun! I go to a sheep to shawl fair. I'm fascinated with the animals, especially the sheep and the spinning. I've done some some beginning spinning and weave. Hope you get to try some spinning sometime.
Debbie

Meggie said...

Cool post Rhonda! How interesting to watch sheep being sheared. I bet the angora wool was also quite interesting. Your husband must always be guessing just what you will be doing next. Does he close his eyes and hope for the best? LOL. I'd say a puppy is a safer choice than some sheep or rabbits.

Michelle said...

Rhonda,
I bet that was a lot of fun..thanks for sharing those pretty sheep!

Michelle

madisonsmom said...

Hi Rhonda, My daughter showed lambs in 4-H for several years and I had to shear her sheep for the shows. I'm thankful we only had two lamb...whew!! It is back breaking work. They were fun though and I kind of miss them.

Tanya said...

I've always wanted to live on a sheep farm, as odd as that sounds. Actually, I'd love to run a hobby farm with a couple of sheep out to pasture. There's just something so elegant and serene looking at them out there...except I did hear that the smell really bad, lol!

Cottage Contessa said...

Hiya sweetie! I have something for you over at my place when you get a chance to stop by!
Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

Bax said...

I've always been fascinated with the shearing process! When I was little my mom's best friend owned a sheep farm/ranch. When it was time to shear I would go watch and it just amazed me how the sheep just were so still during the entire time! And it hurts my back just watching it get done! Great pictures!

Jan

Mary said...

I'm with you on the backbreaking part...sounds like a fun thing to watch, though...
xoxo,
Mary

bj said...

Hi, Rhonda...
I just was thinking that you might like to join the ROOSTER PARADE over at Beverly's How Sweet the Sound...everyone is sending their rooster pics to me and I am sending them on to her...she isn't wanting to share her email address and I can understand that. ANYWAY, i was thinking you might have a REAL, LIVE ROOSTER you might want to put in the parade !!??
hugs, bj
oh, Beverly posted the first 14 roosters today...she will have about 3 or 4 days of roosters to show....

BellaColle said...

Oh my goodness! looks like fun..seriously, I has a wild hair a few years ago, I wanted to raise sheep myself!
Oh yeah..stop by my blog..I have something for you.
XO

Dana said...

Sounds like a lot of fun! I would love to have sheep! The husband isn't falling for it!