Welcome to the Family

I had a big surprise last week when my youngest sister Carol sent me pictures of the newest members of her family — three ewes and four lambs!

It was an even bigger surprise to her that I use wool for felting.  In her defense, she lives in central Wisconsin and has a farm and she, her husband and son run a real estate business.  They are a little busy themselves.

It should have been no shock since she’s been an animal lover since she was a toddler.  She’s managed a dairy farm, a pig farm and has had horses and cows of her own. Carol also has five Border Collies and felt they needed more exercise.  Sheep would be great for them to herd. When she saw the sheep it was love at first site.

None of the sheep are purebreds. She thinks they are Corriedale/Dorset mixes. The ewes were pregnant when she brought them home.  Since then the oldest Mom, Secret 7,  had twin boys.  Carol’s granddaughter Madison named them Salt and Pepper.

 

Jpeg

Jpeg

The black Mom, Dusty, had a dark black boy named Little Will.

Jpeg

The youngest Mom, Amira,  had a teeny little brown lamb with tan on her face Madison named Rosie.  She was very weak and they had to milk Amira and bottle feed Rosie because she couldn’t get up and walk. But an hour later she was on her feet.  They will let Rosie and Amira out of the lambing pen as long as Rosie is doing well.  She is very tiny.

Rosie

The sheep have only been introduced to the two older Border Collies, Belle who is 2 and a half and Misty who is 1 and a half.  They just visit and fuss over the baby lambs.  Misty thinks all the babies belong to her.  She loves them.

The three pups are only 10 months old and will get introduced to the lambs when the lambs are at least half grown.  They want the sheep to feel safe and comfortable in their own space.  They  are going to build a special round pen for that so it will be easier to control both the dogs and sheep.

Carol is already planning on buying a Corriedale ram this fall. So, the excitement will continue.

I wish we weren’t so far apart, but I’ve been promised fleece next year. so, I’m sure a trip is in order.  Another new adventure!  In the mean time, I’m enjoying the pictures and updates.

Thanks to my nephew Bill and his daughter Madison for the pictures and to Carol for sharing this exciting experience with us.

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25 Responses to Welcome to the Family

  1. Lyn says:

    This blog is improving my geography. I had to look up Wisconsin on the map – the state is half the size of the UK!

    Your sister sounds like a real farmer through to the core and her photos are lovely. It is a long way to drive, but you’d come home with a car full of wool.

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      Well, I learned some new, too. I didn’t realize Wisconsin was half the size of the U.K. Sheep were sheared before she brought them home so I’ll have to wait until next year. She was told they only need to be sheared yearly. But yes it will be worth the drive not just for the wool, but to see my sister and interact with the sheep.

    • Lyn says:

      Just checked Marilyn. UK is approx 94,060 square miles and Wisconsin is approx 65,498 square miles. So although I joked that Wisconsin was half the size of the UK, it’s actually two thirds of the size!

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      Quite the researcher Lyn. I didn’t think to check. 🙂 thanks for checking!

  2. Karen Lane says:

    That’s what I would call a “win/win” situation, I wish I had a sister with sheep! They are adorable and they produce fleece, what’s not to like!

  3. luvswool says:

    A delightful visit through photos! Very cool, Marilyn, to have a sister farmer who has sheep. Of course the major question is, will the fleece felt? Hope to be able to help you experiment next Spring. ;-))

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      Thanks Cathy! Since they are primarily Corriedale, I’m sure hoping their fleece will felt well. I guess we’ll find out! Of course, we’ll experiment together after the fleeces are processed. 🙂

  4. ruthlane says:

    Great to learn you have sheep in the family. The babies are really cute. Looks like a handful for your sister 🙂

  5. zedster66 says:

    How cool! You could volunteer to help out at shearing time to make sure you get the best bits 🙂

  6. Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

    Thanks! Now there’s an idea, we’ll see when shearing takes place next year.

  7. Oh wow! What fun, they are just so adorable. 🙂

  8. Congratulations on having sheep in the family. They really are great fun to have. We are up to 5 lambs here but there are a few sheep in the barn yard looking like they may burst.

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      I can see why you’d want to keep the count down, but even 50 sounds huge to me!

  9. Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

    Thanks Ann! I can’t wait to see them in person. It sounds like you are going to have a real big herd there soon. 🙂

  10. koffipot says:

    Lambs are always so appealing, love the black sheep of the family!

  11. Leonor says:

    This is wonderful, Marilyn! How precious those little ones are.

    So, your sister was surprised that you used wool for felting – did she only think of the fibre as for spinning?

    I bet you’re excited to go visit the farm and get that fleece soon(ish) 😀

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      They are precious. As soon as we get some sun, she’ll send me more pics. My sister doesn’t spin. She bought the sheep for exercise for her dogs. The wool was a bonus. She bought the ewes after they were sheared. Next shearing will be next spring.

  12. zararooke says:

    Looks like you will have to plan a longer visit to your sister next spring – so that you are there for both the shearing and the lambing. 😉

    • Marilyn aka Pandagirl says:

      Chances are we won’t be here for the shearing. We usually try to be gone during the winter months, but I’m sure she’ll save some wool for me. Besides driving five hours during that time could be iffy. I’m sure send pictures. 🙂

  13. Pingback: It’s That Time of Year | feltingandfiberstudio

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