Saturday, February 28, 2015

Good Morning to Ewes!

Roused myself at sometime after five.  Got the fire going, coffee brewing and dogs out.  Was nervous about going out to the barn.  Minus ten, still and very cold at first light.  What was I going to find?   I heard a newborn noise but thought it came from the maternity ward.  Dogs back in, downed some coffee and went  out.  Everybody lying down with their lambs.  Sandy jumped up and asked me for his breakfast.  Held mom for a while so he could nurse.  I walked to the maternity fence intending to stand there and just listen - it's what shepherds do.  Sounds tell us so much.  Then I looked down and there they were.  Older mom tending to a teeny tiny dripping wet newborn.  It pained me to look at it, shivering in this awful cold.  It hurts to take my gloves off.  Five minutes without gloves and I'm running back inside to run my hands under warm water.  This tiny baby was struggling to stand up with mom's warm tongue swathing all over it.  I ran for my sweaters and lambing bucket.  My bag of sweaters is full of all kinds of little coats, larger and smaller, real wool and acrylics (kindly donated by friends but used only in last resort).  I found a tiny one, wool and angora (the best for newborns) and ran back.  Mom looked nervous like she was going to bolt.  I found a panel (thank the Lord) by the pig pen.  It was just the right size to keep this mom and baby in this nice little cubby hole.  Wrestled it free and brought it over to mom.  I had to tiptoe and move slowly so as not to freak her out.  Got her penned in and noticed she was still nervous.  No wonder - there was a ewe twin on the other side of the wall!  It was cleaned off and just lying there, head up, shivering.  Ran for another sweater, got them both sitting on fresh hay with mom, with a dose of newborn Nutridrench in their bellies.  OH they are so cute!  I gave mom a bucket of warm molasses water and she sucked it up like a sailor new in port.  I still have to milk her out but I'm hoping spouse, who is snoring away on the sofa as I write, will get up soon and hold her head for me.  It's cramped in her space and I don't want any stepping on babies.  What a lovely surprise.  I knew this weekend would be exciting and here we go.

1 comment:

Erika Keller said...

Beautiful! How do you make the coats?