Let's Bring Back Bartering


| 3/12/2014 2:35:00 PM


Tags: Bartering, Sheep, Rural Neighbors, Lori Havens,

Lori HavensFinally! The temperature here in southwestern Wisconsin rose up into the 50s! It was a wonderful day to enjoy being outside, so we helped Graham, a neighboring shepherd, and his wife, Margaret, who also operate a B&B on their lovely farm, to vaccinate their pregnant ewes. They raise Scottish Blackface sheep, as well as a Suffolk cross (can’t recall exactly what they’re crossed with) variety. These are good sized sheep, and feisty as all get out when they’re being wrangled and flipped onto their bums so they’ll stay still for the vaccination. That plus the pregnancy weight, and it was quite a workout for Bryan and Graham! I wish I could have taken pictures of the process, but my camera battery died the minute I turned it on, so I left it home to recharge. 

Once we returned to Farm on the Hill, our 9-month-old Cockapoo puppy, Zoe, got introduced to a smell she will come to know very well once Bryan’s sheep join us in September! She couldn’t get enough of Bryan’s sweatshirt with its lanolin smell, plus the other “natural” smells one picks up when one vaccinates around 60 sheep!

Zoe

My job was the easiest, by far ... Bryan and Graham wrangled and flipped the ewes, Margaret gave the injection, and I colored the newly vaccinated ewe's head with purple chalk so we'd know which ones were done. My barn coat absorbed a bit of that chalk as the ewes jostled and crowded around in the pen! Zoe enjoyed sniffing these new farm smells, so much!

Barncoat

Margaret served us a lovely lunch of sandwiches, fruit salad and tea, and then she “paid” us for our help in the best way I could have asked for … she offered us a dozen fresh eggs from their flock of layers! I’ve been wishing for some fresh eggs for the last week, so it was wonderful to receive these. They also loaned us a couple of books that they felt would be the most beneficial for Bryan at this point in time, and talked with us for over an hour about sheep and shepherding.




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