26 04 2016




The past 6 weeks have been difficult ones for all here on the farm, especially for Maude.  SO many changes for her.  Her eye has not improved and has gotten worse over the past week.  Being a sheep she is always hitting it or rubbing it and it just hasn’t healed.  Yesterday Dr. Stephanie and I decided to take the eye out.  A radical move but the only one that makes sense.  She can’t see out of it and has managed well without the sight from it..  She will join Cosmo and now there will be a one-eyed cat and a one eyed sheep at the farm.  It’s common for farm animals to have eye problems and have one of their eyes removed.  It doesn’t seem to affect the quality of life.

It will happen tomorrow afternoon and there will be a team of two Vets.  Dr. Stephanie and Dr. Amy.  It is the best choice for my sweet Maude and the sooner that she can be with her friends again the better.  She is so sad to be separated from them even though she can see them.  They eat their hay near her and sleep near her fence. It will be nice to get back to normal.

I will post after surgery  and I hope that it all goes well.  Thanks for reading my blog on this rainy day and I hope you have a lovely day.  Carole



23 04 2016


We are getting a few showers today but we really need a soaking rain which may come next week.  Its very dry and many brush fires have gotten out of control.


Maude has had quite a bit of stress and changes in her life. Separation from the flock, shearing.  She was doing quite poorly so today the vet came.  The Vet was pleased with  her eye the swelling has gone down considerably.  But she has a little temp and a few other things so today she got two Vitamin B shots and an antibiotic shot.  We are hoping that brings her back to the way she was before shearing.  She has had the chills so She became stylish wearing one of my button down Irish sweaters.  Now she is wearing an old Irish wool blanket.  She looks so cute with her poodle cut and her blanket on.


I have been making these sunflower pins to sell at shows.  Yesterday I decided to add one to one of my summer hats.  I love the look.


We have had showers on and off all the chickens are trying to get cover under a 6 inch wide board.   Only Eddie doesn’t mind the rain.

Many thanks for reading my blog and I hope you had a wonderful day.   Carole

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for The Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair on Memorial Day weekend.






17 04 2016


Cool nights and warm days , just my kind of weather. Cleaning up brush and cutting up fallen branches has kept me busy this last week.  I see buds on some of the early tulips and others are peeking out of the ground.  The spring birds are back and I love hearing their cheerful songs.  A person in the neighborhood is trapping  and releasing all the skunks because they are digging up his yard.  I am sure he has gotten Cornelius as I have not seen him. Our neighborhood needs skunks to keep the rodent population down.  i am ever hopeful that Cornelius will find his way back.


Maude has had a few setbacks and is on antibiotics again.    Shearing day took a lot out of her and now I am giving her  added minerals and sheep drench.  My Shearer Steve Marcotte did a wonderful job with her.   Shearing her in her pen so she wouldn’t have added stress.  It will take her a while to recover from this.  How do you like her poodle cut?IMG_6637

Lauren and I had to separate her from the rest of the flock when we saw the sheep doing their spring ritual ramming each other..  Of course this happened at 9 pm!!

The rest of the sheep did well with shearing and look good.  They are now not receiving grain much to their chagrin.

Steve has been my shearer for at least 15 years.  He raises sheep himself and has wonderful fleeces.  I am lucky to have found him after going through shearers who didn’t show up (really famous one) and others that were too busy even though you were on their schedule.  Steve always comes and does a great job I am grateful to have found him.


It seems its taken me forever to get these peas in the ground.  WHen I first wanted to get them in I uncovered the area and it was still frozen.    I have soaked them and in they go today.



It seems it’s not quite the time to start another batch of hot pepper salve but I have run out.  I only could find a pound and a quarter of hot peppers and am looking for more.  Another 2 pounds would be good.  I found this salve to work well.  It’s not the sudden action of most pain relieving salves but it does the trick of releiving my arthritis pain. add peppermint oil at the end for a pleasant order.  I love the fact that I know exactly what is in it and its a lot cheaper than most brands of pain relieving salves.

Many thanks for reading my blog and I hope you are enjoying a lovely spring day wherever you are.  Carole






5 04 2016


From a dusting to snowing all day we ended up with around 5 inches.  It’s cold !! Temps got down to the teens last night.  We had just gotten use to the warm temps!   Cornelius is back  I saw him in the lower part of the barn last night.  He is the one who moves hay against my kitchen door .  It has been happening a lot and I wondered who was doing it Mystery solved.  I am glad he is back. 

THE SHEPHERD’S LIFE by James Rebanks


I read about this book online and i got it in the late fall.  With all the goings on here i started it and put it aside.  I have picked it up again and wanted to share this great book with you.  When I started this book I was also reading Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life by Marta McDowell  and fell in love with Herdwick Sheep.

SO many British breeds have died out but Beatrix raised these sheep on her farm and in her will said that theymust forever remain there.  They are a hardy sort that live on the fells in Northern  England.  They have their babies there and their lambs have their babies there.  This has gone on for centuries.  The fleeces are very coarse and would be so good for rug hooking.  The rugs would never wear out.  This book is about the shepherds who care for these sheep.  It takes you through the seasons with centuries old traditions that are passed on from generation to generation. The ebbs and flows of a life with sheep and farming.  A must read for anyone who loves the old ways, sheep, farming, wool, and this kind of life.

On my first visit to Ireland I felt I belonged , I am finally home..  Now I realize that it wasn’t just Ireland.It was the land of my ancestors to which I felt a connection  including Scotland and England.It was hard to explain to anyone.  I want to pack up and move immediately.  Buy a small croft and have some sheep.  Live in the old ways.  Now I think that this longing is deep inside my DNA and although the move will not be made in my lifetime it may happen to another ancestor down the line.  I have tried to make my life somewhat like the life I wanted and am satisfied.  But if I won the lottery the dust would fly and I would be there .

I highly recommend both these books.



A friend told me about this wonderful BBC series.  I am enjoying everything about it. A great history lesson and lessons on how to make a paintbrush out of a feather,  how to make a wattle weave fence and so much more.  Check it out on You Tube.


Wllie longs to be in the room where Cosmos has chosen to live so this week I have left the door open and come what may.  So far so good.  Willie is a cat who longs for quiet and this room suited him.  I am hoping that Cosmo comes around and accepts these cats as friends.  If it is too hard for him things wil go back to the way they were.  I think it will take some time.

Hope you have a wonderful day and many thanks for reading my blog.  Carole



3 04 2016


The faint mountain in the distance is Mount Tom which is located in my old home town Holyoke,  A wonderful place to grow up.  This is taken from Shelburne  more than 20 miles away.


Winter weather has returned for a few days.  The winds are blowing off the mountain this morning making it feel even colder.  Wood smoke is in the air but alas it won’t last.  Spring birds are here huddling together to keep warm the bird feeders are full to keep them going through these few days.



Mr. Peppers and Phoebe

Innocent looking for sure

A couple of days ago I was tidying up the back coop listening to Mr. Peepers and Phoebe chatting away  then I heard a strange sound.  I hurried out the back door and they were nowhere to be found.  These days I can’t run with these bad legs so it took me a few minutes to get around the side yard.  There they were as pleased as punch with themselves walking along and scratching up bugs as they went.  I tried to get them but they FLEW away!!!!!

By the time I got around to the other side of the house they were half way up the mountain having the time of their lives.  This time of year the creatures that live on the mountain are pretty hungry.  There would be no chance for the two of them unless they flew to the tree tops.  I ran to get Lauren and she came with Lil and chased them many times up and down the mountain and to neighbors houses.

Mr. Peppers found a wonderful spot on top of my neighbor Larry’s garage.  There he sat so proud of himself crowing.  With Larry in tow we continued the chase for about an hour.  We were all getting exhausted and so were the birds.  Just in the nick of time Tyler came home from school.  He loves birds and knows so much about all kinds of them, and within 15 minutes he had caught the two of them.  The two of them looked like they were going to pass out with all the fun and merriment.  They are safe now and when this bad weather is gone I will be out fixing up the covering that had blown off.  It will be much more secure from now on end.  And at some time I will need to trim their feathers.


Lil has been waiting to go to school like her brothers.  Friday was an open house.  She was so happy.  So many new things to try, and in that one hour I think she tried them all.



Many thanks for reading my blog on this snowy windy day.  Hope you have a wonderful day. Carole