Thursday, February 19, 2009

Rudy--Farm Dog!

(queue music)

Green acres is the place to be
Farm living is the life for me
Land spreading out,
so far and wide....

Shearing days are upon us, for the next few months several farms in the region will be having their sheep sheared. Two farms are back to back using the same shearer, I didn't get to go on Monday...but my friend Tanya did, and I was envious! So Tuesday we drove up to Green Valley Farm to lend a hand, watch/learn and take pictures. The entire way up the road I'm repeating over and over..."I'm NOT buying any wool" -- "I'm just going to learn how to properly skirt a fleece" -- "I'm NOT buying a fleece" -- "I'm just going to help out" -- "I don't have any room for another fleece"!

Rudy encountered his first peacocks, llamas, sheep & shetland ponies! He had a did his momma!

I wished I'd had a video camera to show you him running in the field...I think the picture tells the story.

I do so enjoy watching a shearer at work!

Poor guy...he's part of a father/son team and the son came down with a horrible bug, leaving the father to do all 60 sheep - alone! Monday he sheared all 175 merinos...alone too!

I noticed something very cool, I didn't ask him about them and wished I had so if anyone out there has the answer please let me know. But, the shearer was wearing hand made shoes that looked a lot like 18th century "gillie brogues"

I'd just be interested in knowing if it's a personal preference on his part of something that's in the line of work or maybe his way of paying homage to his heritage?!?!

I did learn how to skirt a fleece you know how hard it is for me to "throw away" wool -- the poopy part is easy to throw away but I saw wool being pulled off that I would have tried to salvage!

Lots of laughter was shared while doing this. Several of the ladies I know from the Hawks Nest Retreat, including the shepherdess. I bought "Eva Braun" from her a couple years ago, which is what my Aran Wrap Cardigan is being knit up in. Eva is no longer in her herd, but I am going to have a nice cardigan from her!

It was so funny to watch the sheep emerge from the barn...

At first the llama (who pretty much guard the sheep) didn't recognize them and was worrying himself to death trying to "shoosh" them all away! I think he finally realized they were "his" sheep!
I love to watch the sheep come out...kicking their heels up -- singing like James Brown "I Feel Good"!!

I was tired when I got home...but it was so worth it...a good kinda tired!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!! case you are wondering -- I DID come home with a (1) fleece. I couldn't help myself! So much for the pep talk and will power. I figure that was pretty good considering the other ladies had 4 and 5 fleece in their possession!


issy said...

Wow! What a REALLY fun day! I can't believe you only came home with ONE fleece!!

Aunt Kathy said...

I didn't know the Llamas took care of the sheep. That's too funny.

I'm now singing Green Acres and I Feel Good, thanks, and it's not even Music Monday, LOL

momsue84 said...

What an interesting and fun day you had! I would love to see a shearer at work. Out here, there is a desperate plea for young people to take up the trade. Shearers are hard to come by and needed on all the sheep ranches. So glad Rudy had fun, too.

GoldenTracks said...

How fun! neat to participate in the wool from start to finish.

Dani said...

It looks like you had a fun day Robin!

Channon said...

What a great post! Thanks for documenting it for us. I'm a farm girl, but have never done fiber-producing animals... I do want to see a shearing one day.

(and ironically, my word verification is nonewe)

dogyarnfun said...

Sounds like a fun day that I would enjoy too.

Claudie said...

WOW I have never seen that many sheep being sheered... actually I have only seen one and it was staged lol
What fun and they all look so adorable.
Love your Whiskers on Wed. Mardi Gras girl. Pretty.
Might have to join that group.
Love Claudie

gaylen said...

I will not learn to spin! I will not learn to spin. Looks like you all had a fun day. Can't wait to see what this one is called and what it becomes. g

Soxnitter said...

What a great day! I would have bought fleece, too! How could you not?

wrchili said...

It sounds like everyone had a great day! I can't wait to find out what your fleece ends up being.

Anita said...

I have seen them shear a sheep before but not much info on the actual fleece that day... what a great day you & Rudy had! :)

dogquilter said...

Congrats for only bringing home 1 fleece! What an interesting post. I had no idea about the llama either. How funny the reaction.

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Shoes sound like Aussie booties; they give a good grip to prevent slipping on the shearing floor.

Re the 'poopy' part of the makes great mulch, takes about 5 years to decompose, has natural fertilizer and, if packed, thickly, prevents weeds.

Bubblesknits said...

Thanks for sharing the pictures! I'd like to go to something like that one day. :-)

Linda said...

Not sure how / why they wear those shoes - but every shearer I've seen (that I can remember) wears them. Would be interesting to ask sometime - I'll do that next time I see a shearer! :D