Walda’s Felted Fleece Rug

walda rug

So above is a rug made from the fleece off of our Shetland ewe Walda and backed with felted wool from our Shetland sheep Jet and Diddley.  Here are photos of the felted back.

walda felted backwalda closeup felted back

Walda has a huge fleece that is somewhat coarse on her butt. But it is certainly a dramatic rug. She is messy so there are some hay bits in it particularly near the neck.

Here are close ups of her neck and butt.

walda neckwalda butt

It is for sale for $100.  Let me know if you are interested.

Posted in Farm | 2 Comments

Tangy Pomegranate Meatballs and Other Farm News

So these are some of the freedom chicks the morning after their release.  They are clearly nervous.  The others were hiding in the crate I moved them in.  But since they seem to be adapting well and integrating with the older, more experienced chicks.

I noticed that Diddley, my friendliest sheep, has lost a front tooth.  His winning smile is not quite the same.

He is ten years old now and starting to show his age.

For dinner Friday, after Tom came home I made Tangy Pomegranate Meatballs.  But first, the day prior, I had to make Pomegranate Molasses as there is none available here to purchase.  It involved simmering pomegranate juice, sugar and lemon juice until it reduced from 4 cups to ~ 1 cup, stirring every 10 minutes.  It took me about 2 hours.  Here it is almost done.


So Friday I took 1/2 cup of the molasses and added it to 2# of our ground beef, a grated onion, allspice, pepper, salt, and pine nuts.  Then you make meatballs and bake them.  They were a little moist coming out of the oven so I placed them on paper towels.  This is roughly half of them after baking.


And I still have 1/2 cup of molasses left.


They were surprisingly good, not sweet or that tangy even, but different.  We had them with rice and vegetables.  Tom said to make them again, but he would like a sauce to go with them.

In other farm news, the peas are starting to form.  It looks like we will have a decent pea harvest this year.

And for the first time ever, we have sweet peas!

I have tried before but never had any luck.

Tom is wondering why I am growing flowers in our vegetable garden, but I think they are pretty.

Our strawberries are dwindling, but the raspberries are starting to kick in.  It is always nice to finish the morning animal chores and then eat berries as you pick them.  It reminds me of a summer visit I took to a high school friend’s aunt’s farm in Grass Valley, California.  We would get up and pick berries for breakfast.  Their farm was another of the influences that made me want to be a farmer.

I also pick my salad ingredients every day for lunch.  It is all such a blessing.

Finally here is my annual knee high photo, this time from the fifth of July.

knee high by the fifth of july

But honestly most of out corn this year is not knee high yet.  We have had a cool and wet spring and early summer.

PS  I worked yesterday, and our little county experienced quite a lot of holiday trauma and tragedy.  Tom stayed home and tried to keep our animals calm and the farm safe.  Each year I dislike how our Independence Da is celebrated more and more.  It is like a war zone here.  At least we didn’t find any scared loose dogs running down our busy road this year, But my understanding is that there is one hiding in the woods.  So sad.


Posted in Farm, Recipes- farm | 6 Comments

Skagit COVID-19 Drive-ThruTesting

So Monday morning I went to get tested. I wanted to have a negative result for my Rheumatologist appointment Tuesday evening. Per the website you should allow an hour for testing and expect the results in 24-72 hours. I wanted to post about my experience in case someone else wanted to go to this testing site to give more realistic expectations. Plus it is history in the making.

Here I am at 10:34, about 5 minutes after I arrived. I apologize if anyone’s vehicle is recognizable. I am waiting in a double line. We were instructed to keep our windows and sunroofs closed.

Here I am at 10:37. You can see the first tent. It is getting warm in the car. So far I can make it tolerable by blasting the air conditioner while I move ahead in line and then turn my engine off. I am looking at stuff in my phone to stay occupied.

Here it is 11:25.  You can see three tents now (two are shown in the photo).  I am at the front of the line to be directed to another line.  

11:25 still.  Here are the lines I am about to be directed to.  

11;29.  I am in my new line.  On the sign on the tents it says not to leave your engine running while you are in this line.  It is getting quite warm in my car.

11:46.  I am about 1/2 way down this line.  In the line to the right of me there is a broken down car.  Fortunately there was a police officer who tried to help.  They let a couple of cars around this one and then brought an electric cart over and I presume jump started it and got the car running again.  I am glad they have help like this.

11:53.  Getting closer.  There are people coming out of the tents to gather information from the cars ahead of me.  They have their masks and stand 6 feet away while you lower your window for instructions.  Then you close your window and hold your drivers license and insurance card up to the window while they take photos of them.  When no one was nearby, I did start my engine up a couple of times for the AC.  It was getting quite hot.  

12:05.  I made it through the first tent which is just for registration.  Now I am in line for the second tent.  A lady in PPE came out and described the process.  She then brought out a swab which I grabbed the end of.  I closed my window and rotated this swab just inside of both nostrils.  When I was done she held the tube next to my slightly opened window, and I placed the swab in the tube.  It was all very sanitary.  

After the people ahead of me finished their swabs I got to leave.  It was around 12:15.  So it took almost 2 hours.  I was late for an appointment.  Once you are in line there is no reasonable way to get out.  You just need to wait.  The second hour I had done all I could think of with my phone so it was just listening to a podcast.  

They gave me a sheet describing how I was to get my results which was a text message.  They said it would take 72 hours.  I actually received a text the next evening, but I didn’t realize it was my results.  All it said was “negative”.  Today when I reread the sheet I finally appreciated that this was my result.  So that is the process for getting tested for coronavirus at Skagit’s Drive-Thru Testing.  I have had two of the nasopharyngeal swabs at the ARC and one antibody test.  All negative.  This test was much nicer on my nose but was definitely a time commitment and a sauna.

Posted in History, Trips | 2 Comments