Author Archives: bluestempond

About bluestempond

Hobby farmer living at Bluestem Pond in Michigan.

Fiber Season

I am preparing for a trip, and worrying over all the details I will be leaving in my husband’s hands while I am gone. He is quite capable, but we divide up the labor on the farm and neither of … Continue reading

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Lucious Wool

Just for the record, the shearer came on Tuesday and got the job done. I successfully corralled the sheep and goats in their pen so he could grab them one at a time. The night before, I released the baby … Continue reading

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Taming the Lambs, and Reupholstering

I have been speed-taming my new lambs, sitting with them quietly several times a day, knowing that by Tuesday they must be released into the pasture. I’m not sure a week was enough. They don’t seem as afraid of me … Continue reading

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New Lambs Are Home

We went ahead and fetched our two little Shetland lambs today. I am surprised at how small and light they are, little bundles of fluff with sharp hooves. They are no bigger than our little terrier, and much more timid. … Continue reading

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A Promising Spring on the Farm

You know how farmers are, eternally pessimistic and complaining about the conditions every single year. In that, I am not a natural farmer because I tend to be an optimist and forever look on the bright side. Some people find … Continue reading

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Preparing a Sheep Trap

I’m waiting anxiously for the sheep shearer to contact us to say what day he will be here to shear Eddy and the girls. It has dragged on for weeks with us on alert for that call to come. The … Continue reading

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New Goat, New Sweater

It has been a surprisingly busy month, with travel plans, spring chores, band concerts, and prepping for new animals in the barnyard. We were waiting for a stretch of dry weather to bring home the new goat, but it never … Continue reading

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Adding to the Farm Family

Spring is sprouting and it is baby animal season! We made a decision not to have our Shetland ewes get bred, and instead to buy a couple more babies to fill out the herd. We are going to the breeder … Continue reading

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Gray days of February

Covid precautions, doctor visits, snowstorms… It seems that not much is moving in February. We are planning a mini-getaway in March but my husband’s recent back pain has been putting things into suspended animation for a few months. I think … Continue reading

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February Snowstorm and Fiber Arts

I love snow, especially if I don’t have to go anywhere and can just stay on the farm and enjoy it. A big storm has been moving across the country and dumped over a foot here before moving on. I … Continue reading

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Dishtowels!

I finished weaving the dishtowels that took so long to warp last week. I was dismayed that they were kind of gauzy and stiff, but after I hemmed and washed them they are soft and absorbent. When I searched online … Continue reading

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The Tedium of Warping

I am enjoying learning to weave, but am blown away by the sheer tedium of hooking up the lengthwise strings, or in the proper terminology, “beaming the warp.” It is quite possible I am doing something wrong, as I am … Continue reading

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New Year, New Projects

I’ve done a lot of weaving over the last couple months. I am getting more confident with my loom and recently most of my errors have been due to wanting to finish up for the day and hurrying carelessly to … Continue reading

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Nothing Special

I love those blessed days of “nothing special.” We already had most of the holiday rehearsals and concerts, the parties, the present-buying, etc. Now, it is happily a smooth ride into the final holidays of the year. I find myself … Continue reading

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Barn Cats and Lazy Chickens

I’m so lucky that both the barn cats we adopted four years ago turned out to be the kind that love humans. Emmie is a little stand-offish when her “brother” is present and she hisses at him to make it … Continue reading

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Some Recent Weaving Experiments

After all the detailed instruction-following required to make the pretty placemats that were my last weaving project, I felt like going free range and weaving up some of my stray yarn. I did a fast, undisciplined job of warping the … Continue reading

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The Elusive Raspberry Shade

I’m still working on my quest to get the yarn my friend wants, in the right weight and color. I decided it is so tricky to get a consistent color from a dye lot that I make up by myself … Continue reading

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How to Be Like a Machine?

I have a project that I don’t know how to complete. A friend loves the idea of home-grown, home-spun yarn to make a little sweater for her granddaughter. She showed me the pattern and told me the color she wants, … Continue reading

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Weaving and Yarn Experiments

I joined the local Handweavers’ Guild this year to get some help understanding why my loom was giving me so much trouble. One member was especially kind and helped me identify things I was doing that were getting in the … Continue reading

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Short Trip to the Market

One of the best thing about living here is that the produce section of our local market is just out the back door. I was thinking about what we need for the next few days of meals and decided to … Continue reading

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