Monday, May 9, 2011


MSB Small Flock Committee Sponsored:
Spring Picnic & FREE Workshop

June 4, 2011 – Noon
Ugly Dog’s Farm
5185 N Washburn Road
Davison, Michigan  48423

Topics Include:
Ÿ         Flock Health – Dr. Heather Ludlam of Windswept Farms will discuss various sheep health concerns in order to help shepherds diagnose/treat/prevent common problems in their flocks.
Ÿ         Fleece Characteristics – Letty Klein of Pine Lane Farm will talk with shepherds about various kinds of wool and what makes them unique.
Ÿ         Nutrition – Cindy Cieciwa and Margaret Van Camp of Pitchfork Ranch will talk about their flock nutrition program.
Ÿ         Wool Processing – Carol Densmore of Cross Wind Farm will teach various fiber processing techniques in this “hands on” session.

 Also Featuring:
Ÿ         Potluck Lunch – bring a dish to pass and enjoy talking with fellow shepherds and wool enthusiasts.
Ÿ         Fiber Art – our latest spinning and weaving projects will be on display – check out a few of our floor looms! (bring your spinning wheel or YOUR woolen-wares to show off).
Ÿ         Ugly Dog’s Farm Sheep – come and meet our purebred Natural Colored Merino, Clun Forest, and Border Cheviot sheep!


Feel free to call or email for more information!
 Pictures from the 2010 event...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

What a Spring...

Spring has finally "SPRUNG"...  We had a gorgeous weekend here...  Most of the trees are budding out and the grass is growing like crazy with all of the rain we have had.

It has been a crazy and busy spring.  Our lamb count is up to 25 live lambs...  13 ewe lambs and 12 rams - there are 3 more ewes left to lamb.  With our fair share of both good and back luck, I will be happy when our last ewes are finished and we can focus our attention on other endeavors...  One lesson I will take forward with me from this lambing season is that not all ram lambs will be ready to breed when you think they should be.  I knew that our little guy from North Carolina had been brow beaten by his ewes and I knew that we would be delayed in our lambing.

The good news is that once he got breeding, he REALLY got busy...  Most of his breeding group has lambed within the same 2 week period...  So it seems that once he got a taste of being a breeding ram, he decided to take the job seriously.

In addition to "lambing luck", we have had our share of good and bad luck all around...  the crazy rains of spring helped to flood our basement - just about at the same time that our ewes finally started pushing out lambs...  luckily, these were my tried and true homegrown Border Cheviot ewes and they did us proud - easy lambings and good moms.  The sump pump clogged as the rains poured down and a couple inches of water accumulated before we found it.

Much time was spent sorting through and throwing away things that have been stored in the basement for a very long time.  Sometimes the universe has a way of telling you when you have procrastinated long enough...

Barney seems to be doing great right now.  He is enjoying his hand feedings twice a day now and it seems to be agreeing with him.  I am glad he seems to be doing so well...  he is completely off of the pain medicine.  I believe that I will not put him through the hardship of another Michigan winter, but I sure would like for his last days here with us to be good ones.

Wayne will return tomorrow from his trip to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and it sounds like he had an AWESOME time...  He helped our friends trim and show their sheep, got to shop all of the vendors at the festival, and he is also bringing back our new ram.  Wayne sounds thrilled with the new guy and I can hardly wait to see him in person.

We have finalized the agenda for the Sheep Breeders Picnic and Free Workshop which will be held here at the farm on June 4th...  Dr. Heather Ludlam will talk about flock health, Letty Klein will talk about fleece characteristics, Cindy Ciecewa and Margaret Van Camp will talk about sheep nutrition, and Carol Densmore will be doing a "hands on" session about processing fiber.  I will post all of the info on here within the next day or so...

We have also been buying and stacking up loads of last years hay to try to fill up the barn for next winter...  I always feel better when we have our food stores in place.

All of this and Zumba too...  Monday, Wednesday, Thursday nights and Saturday mornings (I am now teaching every other Saturday)... 

I am NOT saying that things are going to slow down any time soon here at Ugly Dog's Farm, but I do think that having the life and death struggles of the lambing barn behind us for the year will defintely free me up for more blogging.  Sometimes there is just too much processing going on and blogging is not an option.   I have grown to enjoy writing about what I think, what I know, and what I learn - and even when I don't write about it immediately, I WILL share all of it with you...

Happy Mothers Day to my Mom and to all the mothers out there...