We fared pretty well during the recent ice storm that hit mid-Michigan. We were only out of power for one day. While it was a bit scary, as the world looked like it would shatter into trillions of tiny pieces around us, the storm made for some stunning photos. Our sheep had hay and spent brewing grains in the barn and they still preferred being out on pasture the day after the storm.
Friends of ours in Mason and Charlotte were with out power over Christmas and spent almost a whole week in the dark! Close relatives, just 20 minutes south and east of us in the Waterloo/Chelsea area didn’t have any ice at all and never lost power. This happens quite often, where they have very different weather from us, so we think we each must be on either side of some sort of band that runs across the state somewhere near Stockbridge.
We had the sheep grazing on a new pasture, after the ground froze, to eat what was dying back anyway. However, with the recent storms and snow cover we had to break down and buy some hay. Thankfully the price is down a bit from last year. We also found a local source who delivers. So, maybe we won’t have to go to hay auctions in the new year.
We’re anxiously awaiting sheep in the first part of February. Some of the ewes look ready to burst now. We’ll also be lambing in March, April and May, with the biggest batch in May. As we are up to 35 ewe’s now, 33 of whom will be lambing, we thought we better spread it out. So we separated our girls into four breeding groups and have given ourselves about a two-week break between each lambing.
For those of you who ordered lambs, they look great and should be ready for processing in February. This month, for our own freezer, we took two lambs in for processing. They were a bit older than the bunch we are selling. These boys were much bigger than last year’s lambs and provided quite a bit more meat. As a result, we’re looking forward to ringing in the New Year with friends who requested Misty Lane Lamb Meatballs for the celebration.
We hope you had a very Merry Christmas and send you our best wishes for an abundant 2014!