Monday, November 26, 2012

Weighing Sheep - Thanksgiving 2012

Everything ready to go.

Jonathan tests the scale.  Unfortunately, right after the picture was taken, the knot slipped and the scale hit him on the head.

Daniel reties the rope.

Gunnar was a little suspicious of the proceedings and had to be coaxed with a handful of oats.

Our makeshift feedsack sling.


But all the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't get Gunnar's front hooves off the ground.

Gwen holding Gunnar while we shorten the ropes.  Horned sheep are much easier to control because they come with convenient handles.

Finally, success!  Gunnar qualifies for the heavyweight series at 196 pounds!  As you can see, he's been home at mealtimes.

Baaaaah....the indignity of it all!  Nice fleece, Gunnar.

Johnny testing the ice.  Unfortunately it all melted by Thanksgiving.  No pond hockey this year.

Grandpa going to get his mail.  Not many 92 year olds ride mountain bikes.

Helga did not want to be weighed

Daniel and Gwen lifted the 2x4 from which the scale hung and we learned that sheep have plenty of traction when their front hooves find the ground.  Holding  a plank above your head when you're getting pulled sideways by a frantic sheep graphically demonstrates the instability of a high center of gravity and a long lever.

Time to shorten the harness and try again.  Helga came in at 126 pounds, Sonja 114 and  seven-month-old Vappu 110 - only 4 pounds less than her mother.  She's been home at mealtimes as well.
The table all set.

Johnny showing big bro how it's done on the pirunekeuhot.

Thanksgiving morning.  The girls getting moved to the winter pen where they were eagerly received by the boys.  That time of year...

Scrabble.  David and Deanna took the competition.

Black Friday, instant winter.  Mik and Jeni cut a little tree for their porch.

The winter war concluded with a victory for the deer.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Fall 2012

Maukku pointing out something to Johnny.

Eihan ne kapitaalistit tata saa.

Johnny bragging about his new broken arm.

Killin chickins.

First the scald....

George's Plucker works like magic.

You kinda get tired of pulling out chicken guts after a certain point.


The Regional XC Meet at the Kilpela Farm...

....involved some interesting weather.

We used the tractor to hang David's deer.  Although the temperature was in the 40's David had worked up a good sweat dragging the deer out of the woods and needed to remove a few layers.

David, the deer processor.  Thanks, Dave.  We're enjoying your venison very much.  Please shoot another one when you come up for rifle season.

The modern shepherd uses technology to move his flock.

Hey. that looks like good grass out there.

Go for it girls.

The annual Halloween Party - break the balloon game.  Johnny got smoked.

Snow that melts when it hits the ground,  just a reminder to get ready for the  real thing.

Moonshine.  The speck on the upper left is a star.

The weatherman predicted a sunny day, but it didn't arrive until just before sunset.

Monday, November 5, 2012

A Trip to Sleeping Bay

Normally we would have packed everything in our canoe, but the wind was so strong that it made  even walking on the beach difficult.  Definitely not canoe weather.

Kalevi loves the beach.

We were planning to hike all the way to Sleeping Bay, but we decided to camp instead at our regular spot near Wolf Point.  We really needed some shelter from the wind.

The water was warm enough for swimming though.

We've probably eaten more steaks at Wolf Point than anywhere else.

I always admire diving birds like Mergansers; they have no fear of rough seas.

The wind continued all during the night and the next day.

But we slept reasonably well, much better the second night once we got used to the hard  ground  again.

A rock cairn, built by some friends who had camped here earlier.

Hot oatmeal with raisins and brown sugar.

And a mug of hot coffee.  Breakfast at the big lake.

The wind at Sleeping Bay confirmed that our decision to camp at Wolf Point was the right one.  It would have been miserable to camp on the beach and dangerous to camp in the woods near any tall trees.

Eagles, of course love windy days.

These guys are great fun to watch as they scurry along the edges of waves.

Sunset at the Point.

This is a special spot for us.  We had our first steak dinner here the first time we visited Wolf Point 17 years ago.  I even wrote a story about it.

The next morning, Calm.  The big lake always keeps changing.  Always.

Kalevi doesn't even bother chasing these guys any more.  They can duck  under the sandstone slabs in a flash.