It’s not that I think the Universe is “out to get me”. On the contrary, I think overall I get along pretty well with The Great Everything. But I really must remember that the Universe has got a penchant for sarcasm. For example, if I get some pregnant sheep, and say – out loud – that I am prepared if necessary to help with the birthing, I ought to know that at the end of the day I’m going to find myself with my arm up a ewe.

Blackie went into labor some time in the wee hours of Friday morning. She had (big surprise, this is Blackie we’re talking about) a rough time, made rougher by the fact that she was quite determined I should not help. It was almost nine by the time the poor thing was exhausted enough to accept my interference, at which time I quickly established that yeah, of course, poor Blackie had a breech birth.

So there I am, having had NO sleep, nor much at all since Tuesday morning, trying to find and position the appropriate legs on a backwards sheep that Blackie is trying equally hard to eject. (Is this stuff work safe? Sorry, maybe I should have posted a TMI alert?) I did finally manage it, after a lot of effort I shall not bother to detail – go read James Herriot, that’s the way I knew what to do – and when the little monster came out, the trouble we’d both had all made sense: He’s huge! He’s got a big shaggy head, and long stilts for legs, and he’s taller than Freyja’s ram, who is older by three days and has been working very hard at growing.

Blackie and her boy:



There was a second lamb (also breech, but not as seriously) but he didn’t make it. He was as tiny as this one is large, couldn’t even manage to stand up until quite late, and only managed it once. Stalkermom took him and tried to feed him up, but even though they have heat, it wasn’t enough for the poor sickly thing.

Here’s poor Blackie, trying hard to make him stand up:


See how his head is about the size of her nose, while in the picture above the little monster’s head is the size of her entire muzzle? Here’s a “just born” shot, he’s still wet:


BTW, I would like to defend my clothing choices as revealed in this picture by reminding you “no sleep” and “arm up an ewe”.

Freyja thoughtfully got the heck out of our way during the process by teaching her two about “outside”.


“Outside” is fun, but running and climbing make you very sleepy:


Little brothers make the best pillows.