Do you know that I will be holding newborn lambs in a about seven weeks! The thought of those sweet little babies all snuggled up to their mamas warms my heart. There is just nothing like the bond between the ewes and their lambs, nothing like the innocence of new life.
The winter solstice has come and gone “wowing” us with the first lunar eclipse in 372 years. It powered up my creative juices and knocked on my sleepy brain. Winter has set in, but yet a day or two of warm temperatures made me long for burying my hands in the tilled soil, planting seeds of life and beauty, and late summer harvest.
The smell of winter whisks me back to the island I grew up on where most of my free time was spent wandering the coastline and exploring the prehistoric woods. The trees are different there, stubby Jack Pines grow in their own groves close to the marshy areas, and the White Pines tower above the crowding Spruce. All lend their scent to the air which has stayed embedded in my nose for many years. Each winter when the snow rests on the branches of the trees near the woods that I now call home, the smell awakens those memories and my can’t help but close my eyes and take it all in.
Smells of spring are a few months away, but thoughts of and preparation for one of the best season’s of the year are bubbling up in my head. Is the barn ready? Do the stall doors work? Is the straw bedding stockpiled? Where is my lambing basket and my insulated overalls? My thermos? Time to prepare the barn now for the excitement ahead. Don’t ever be caught unprepared.
In between dyeing, skeining, tagging and packing orders, many afternoons are spent outside when the sun is angled just right through the barn door. Raking and cleaning top my to-do list, but time sitting on a bucket with my favorite woolen friends refreshes my soul. The smells of the season inspire me and now, mingled in with the sweet smells of winter, are the sweet smells of sheep. Earthy, simple goodness.