Thursday, April 28, 2011

Ocqueoc River has crested it's banks!

We live on the Ocqueoc River. Our house is high up on a ridge and is set back 400 ft. from the river.

When we built here they told us that there was a 100 year flood plain down by the river.  If we would have built closer to the river the house would be sitting in the water at this time.  After all of the snow melting from the storm and all the rain we've had here the last two days, the river has finally flooded some of our property.  Here are a few pictures.

The river is flooding on both sides.  Normally this bend is only about 10 to 12 feet across.

Normally the banks in the summer are about 5 feet above the water level

This is yet another view of the water flowing on the property.

This poor bird is sitting up on the tallest trees by the river. Hopefully it didn't lose a nest.

The alpacas, and all other animals are fine. They are just a little wet and the barnyard and pastures have a lot of water in them. We are supposed to have more rain this afternoon. Friday is going to be a sunny day. We sure do need it.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Surprise! It's a girl

Yesterday evening we went out to do the chores and found a surprise. A white cria! 

We were not expecting any babies this early.  We wondered who's cria is it?

It was Bellas!  We had forgotten that we had bred her in May of 2010.  It was on our calendar, but we did not record the date in the records that we keep on the alpacas.  We actually were not expecting any crias to be born until August of this year. So this was truly a wonderful surprise. An alpaca's gestation is 11 to 11 1/2 months. She is a healthy 17 lb. cria. A big girl. Mom is doing well. She is bagged up and the cria has been suckling.

This is a picture taken this morning. We placed a cria jacket on her last night as it was below freezing. Crias cannot regulate their body temperature very well. We had that snowstorm the day before and now everything is flooded in the pastures from the melting of all that snow.  It is a mucky mess.  I was glad to see that she wasn't wet from all of the water. So now we have 24 Alpacas again. (Remember, I blogged about losing Renoir this past winter).

Happy Easter everyone!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

More Snow... Will it ever end?

Well as you can see we had another snow storm. The snow very wet and heavy. As you can see above, I got the blazer stuck in the barnyard this morning. I even had it in 4 wheel low drive. The snow is so wet and underneath is water and clay. All my new tires did was just spin and spin.  Gary shoveled and after much "rocking" of the blazer we finally got it out.

The girls are coming out of their shelter.

The girls at their fence feeders. Notice the fence is almost laying over to the side due to the heavy snow.

 The guys  are eating the tree, as the limbs are now in their reach.

And the laying hens decided to stay in the coop today. I don't blame them. I will be working on more fiber projects inside the house today.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Things that cheer me up

I can't believe we woke up to snow again this morning. Wait! Yes I can believe it, we live in Michigan.  As the saying goes, "If you don't like the weather, just wait 5 minutes and it will change".

So since it has been a miserable day outside, I decided to do some needle felting in my studio. One thing I love about needle felting is that it helps relieve stress.  I can really poke the wool with those needles.  I want spring to come, so I decided to make some spring flower pins and a happy face to cheer me up.

Speaking of cheering up, I wanted to share this story.  If you remember I held a contest on this blog, when I first started it last fall.  Here is the old post about the contest. One of my winners, Valerie Mussleman,  I sent some alpaca roving too.  She had spun it into yarn and then knitted a helix scarf.  This was to send into the magazine "Spin Off".  Her scarf made the online magazine article.  You can find the article and pattern here.
She mentions about where the alpaca came from. I was very excited for her.  Well this is not the end of the story.  Not so long ago, I was having a hectic day and feeling a little down.  My husband came into the house from getting the mail and asked if I was expecting a package. I said no, none that I knew of.  So I went to see what I had. I opened the package and to my surprise it was the scarf that Valerie had spun and then knitted.
It is beautiful. I was so surprised by this.  Here are a couple of other pics of it. It can be worn as a collar also.  I just love it.

 Thank You Valerie. You don't know how much that made my day! 

Fiber people are wonderful friends.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

A beautiful spring day on the Ranch

I know I haven't  posted in over a week. The kid goats are doing good.  We have already sold the 2 doelings.  We still have the buckling for sale if anyone is interested.
Gary & I were busy yesterday rebuilding the shelter that was blown apart in the wind storm
 that I had blogged about here in the past.  I took a couple of videos of the alpacas to share with all of you from the tractor on the ranch.   Enjoy...