Monday, November 24, 2014

Lowline Calves

 It suddenly occurred to me this evening that whilst I had been photographing and posting online about our beautiful Lowline calves, I had neglected to put them here. I've been trying to keep the Roulette Facebook page and blog updated, I've posted the photos on Instagram and I've even uploaded my favourite to Flickr. But have I shared them here with you? A quick scroll through my blog revealed that I hadn't. And as I know how much many of you enjoy seeing the photos of these sweet little animals, I knew I must amend that immediately.
So, here they are in all their glossy black glory. Some of the photos are of newborns and others are of our older calves. I hope you enjoy seeing them!

play time

All of our cows except one has calved. Poor Cleopatra, the last cow due to calve, is being watched like a hawk and speculation is running quite wild around here. It'll be her first calf, so we're quite keen to see what kind of Mum she will be.
Then, no doubt sooner than we think, it will be time to wean them all and begin the enjoyable process of handling them and halter breaking them. I absolutely love working with animals in this way, and even more so with young ones.

Until next time!

Sarah x


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Here & Now

Loving...our new morning routine. Milking the cow first-up is just the best way to start the day. Milking is so peaceful, and most mornings I also get to watch the sun come up whilst I milk
Drinking...anything that is cold! Iced chocolates are my favourite when the warm weather comes
Wearing...summer clothes
Feeling...quite emotionally up and down. We seem to have hit another patch with strong contrasts, some great things are happening but it's not an easy road we're treading and some days I guess I'm just worn out
Wanting...the wet season to start. I'm tired of the dust and the dryness, athough I am grateful that we are not as dry as some other parts of Australia
Thinking...about our chickens. Most of our laying flock is reaching retirement, eggs are scarce these days and I'm not quite sure what to do about it.
Dreaming...about what this place will look like in ten years time, and how we'll hopefully be running it by then


We tried a new cheese yesterday! So far all we have made is whole milk ricotta, which is a far faster, easier cheese than all the others. Yesterday we tried making fetta, and we think our cheese may have worked! We'll be able to taste it in a few days, as that is all the time it needs in it's brine before it's ready to eat. I do hope it tastes good!
On another cheese note, isn't that little cheese platter above just gorgeous? We enjoyed it a weekend or two ago at a local 'dairyland' cafe, where these cheeses were made. It was presented in such a beautiful way that I just had to snap a photo of it!


What's happening in your world right now?
I'd love it if you'd share your own here & now on your blog!

Sarah xx


Thursday, November 13, 2014

A Sheepish Post

I've been trying to write this post for several days. First I started late at night, and realized I was too tired to concentrate. The other times I've been interrupted or my mind has been occupied with other things. The end result is that I've written so many words for this post that I'm afraid I don't feel like I can construct a decent sentence for it now.

I wanted to write about how much I love these beautiful, unique creatures. How I've formed my own opinion on their intelligence levels. Sheep are not stupid, as almost everyone proclaims. They are, in my view, very curious little animals with an ability to learn very quickly, but also an ability to panic quickly too, which I think may be why they have the reputation of being stupid. They also have vastly different behavioral patterns than those of cattle, and seem to have set routines on where they graze at what time of day, and they stick to it. I've also watched them use their nose to sniff out a plant they wish to eat, so they are in my view more of a forager than a grazer.

Then I wanted to write about Rilla and the sheep. She's changed in her work so much since having sheep to work daily. It's her job to round them up and put them in the shed at night, and she loves it. I've also used her to 'free-graze' them in our lane ways and establishing shelter-belts, where there is no sheep proof fencing, so Rilla is required to not only get them to the location but to keep them their and let them graze. It's harder for a dog than it sounds, as her instinct is telling her those sheep must be near me, they shouldn't be spread out eating. But she's the best at swapping between the two jobs, and grasped the concept very quickly. I love how gentle she is. She doesn't mind pausing when the two lambs want to feed, but she has no trouble in telling one of the sheep off if they decide to give her a hard time. Working with her to get a job done is just the best feeling in the world.


I've been so busy with work and daily life that I've been struggling to keep writing here lately. We've been blessed with the arrival of more calves and baby chicks!
It's not a chore as writing this blog is actually something I love doing, and it gives me a place to voice my thoughts, share my photos and document a little bit of my life. I've been spending most of my computer time on the Roulette Farm social media and blog sites, which limits even more the time I get to spend here. But now tonight it seems I finally have the time and head space to sit down and just write. So written I have, and whether or not this post ends up making sense is up to the reader I suppose.

I hope life is as good and full and busy and satisfying as it is here at the moment. Every day comes with challenges, and although sometimes it can be hard to plow on through them, often we do and come out the other side feeling happier and more satisfying as we've achieved something and solved a problem. And on the days when you just can't plow any more it's ok to step back, take a deep breath and take a break from it all.

Take care until next time!

Sarah xx

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