Friday, April 18, 2014


When I hear the sound of complaining sheep from inside the farmhouse I let out a long sigh. It is not the heckle for grain or the regular, communicative, baas but the sound of unjust escape. It's the jealous sheep sound that roughly translates too tattling, "Hey, hey heeeeeey!!! She is out of the pasture and eating lawn grass and I want out tooooo heeeeyyyy!!!" And so I closed the laptop I was working on and headed outside, expecting to find a lamb in the front yard or some broken part of fencing I would have to stop my design work and repair after wrangling the sinners back to their purgatory.

When I walked outside to the sheep paddock there was no escaping. There was something far more drastic. I let out a loud curse word I rarely say then literally jumped up and down. Maude was standing over her very own lamb. I swear it.

I was absolutely stunned. This was nearly impossible. Maude had NEVER lambed, and I never thought she could. She had been bred nearly every autumn of her ten years and not once had she conceived. This was known, as the day I got her and two other woolies in a barter for fiddle lessons I was told she was not a breeding animal. I didn't care at the time since sheep were pretty much a wool project only, and the deal was too good to pass up. But today a little miracle happened, Maude produced a half Scottish Blackface and half English Border Leicester!

Meet the new girl! Maude's baby! The tiny little magic lamb!

So far Mama isn't thrilled about the blessed event. The complaining voice I left my freelance work for, turns out that was Maude. She was acting as if a mistake had been made and I better take care of it, NOW. The little girl wasn't cleaned half as well as the other mother's cleaned their lambs. So I went out with a towel and checked the little girl over. She seemed healthy. I watched the new mother and her babe and every time the little girl tried to nurse Maude head butted her away. At first I thought my towel job removed her sent, but that wasn't the case. Maude chortled and licked the little girl, but was not letting her anywhere near the scene of the crime. I didn't want to get too worried, so I waited. I watched for a long while. Every time the little girl tried to nurse she was pushed away and Maude walked off. I sighed.

I took a bottle down to the goat pen, milked Bonita, and got some good milk into the lamb, who drank well from the bottle right off. Tonight, if the ewe lamb still isn't nursing me and a few good friends will pin Maude to the wall and I'll milk out her colostrum at least and get that in the little girl.

I always thought Maude would be a she-wolf kind of mother. The super protective, super sweet, underdog of a mother. But as it turns out Maude is Maude. And so I may have a bottle lamb in the house. And that is good news, even if Maude is a monster. More young blood in this old flock is a blessing. And I am feeling blessed as I smile and shake my head at my mean-spirited sheep, who still managed through her spite to gift me a beautiful Easter present. Praise to all who grant blessings, for that sweet little bastard born of two Nations, a surly mother, and a very, very, VERY happy farmer.


Blogger Cris said...

Holey criminey! Way to go Maude. We should have know you'd have a trick up your sleeve. :-) Congrats, Farmer!

April 18, 2014 at 6:54 PM  
Blogger Terra West said...

congrats! deserves the name Magic or Miracle

April 18, 2014 at 7:07 PM  
Blogger Terra West said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

April 18, 2014 at 7:08 PM  
Blogger jenomnibus said...

Wha - What?! You go girls!

April 18, 2014 at 7:10 PM  
Blogger Mary Schroeder said...

Congrats on your new lamb!! May she be a new ambassador of your flock.

April 18, 2014 at 8:15 PM  
Blogger Nastasha Nelle' said...

your sheep in the background has this expression about them like "what the what?!? how did this happen? is this allowed??"

April 18, 2014 at 8:38 PM  
Blogger English sheep gal said...

I let out a loud curse word too - then got the giggles, who'd have thought grumpy old Maude would be the one to make your day! Fantastic to have 2 ewe lambs to stay as part of the CAF flock.

I liked the earlier suggestion for the name Magic, but also think it could be SUPRISE, or Esther, to link to being born at Easter.

April 18, 2014 at 10:08 PM  
Blogger Anton said...

That's awesome, go Maude! If you can find a way to pin Maude against a wall and allow the lamb to nurse without being kicked away, Maude might just get used to the idea. I've had it work before but never on a 10 year old sheep that had never before lambed! Best of luck!!

April 18, 2014 at 10:53 PM  
Blogger kandy Gray said...

NO WAY!!!! wow, just wow

April 18, 2014 at 11:45 PM  
Blogger Ducky said...

Whoa, Maude! Way to go, you great surly beast! I second the suggestion of Surprise as a name for the sweet new lamb!

April 19, 2014 at 2:22 AM  
Blogger Ducky said...

Whoa, Maude! Way to go, you great surly beast! I second the suggestion of Surprise as a name for the sweet new lamb!

April 19, 2014 at 2:22 AM  
Blogger blind irish pirate said...

You got quite the gift - get that colostrum in her now. Will Maude stand being tied so she can't head butt her?

April 19, 2014 at 3:30 AM  
Blogger daisy g said...

It's an Easter miracle! How cool is that?!!

April 19, 2014 at 5:52 AM  
Blogger peppysis said...

Oh I just cried!

April 19, 2014 at 8:27 AM  
Blogger The Kelly's Adventures in KY said...

Oh Maude, you independent gal. Happy to hear she had a healthy little one. Maude's legacy will continue on!!

April 19, 2014 at 8:53 AM  
Blogger Carlos Rodriguez said...

the crotchety old ewe is a crotchety old mother too boot! her for the day she was born, you gotta keep this one! too funny

April 19, 2014 at 9:55 AM  
Blogger Controlled Jibe said...

What a sweet story! Hopefully Maude will have a change of heart and take her little one back? Does that ever happen?

April 19, 2014 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger Washington Cube said...

Video, please. We love watching the babies.

April 19, 2014 at 2:55 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Thanks all! update and video to come, Washington Cube!

April 19, 2014 at 3:35 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

I think I'll be naming her Brianna

April 19, 2014 at 3:36 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Kandy my response as like yours!!!

April 19, 2014 at 3:36 PM  
Blogger Peggy said...

Hi, first time commenting but not first time reader. Congrats on your miracle lamb! Perfect holiday for a miracle. I've had first time mothers who don't know what to do with this thing that came out of their bodies. I will either tie them up or lock them in a jug to force mom to nurse and bond. Once she does, she will become the type of mother you suspected her to be. Also, you need to get colostrum in her asap, and really shouldn't wait until tomorrow. Good luck and enjoy!

April 19, 2014 at 6:17 PM  
Blogger Westfarm Goat Mom said...

This made me really smile!

April 19, 2014 at 10:12 PM  
Blogger Westfarm Goat Mom said...

This really made me smile

April 19, 2014 at 10:13 PM  
Blogger Maggie in Tally said...

HOLY CRAP! Woo hoo! Hope she has inherited her father's personality though.

April 20, 2014 at 9:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Way to go Maude!! Woohoo what a very nice Easter present indeed. I like the name Miracle too.

April 20, 2014 at 5:33 PM  
Blogger macbew said...


April 24, 2014 at 9:29 AM  
Blogger macbew said...


April 24, 2014 at 9:29 AM  

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