Thursday, March 31, 2011

LOTS of lambs and sheep for sale!

We now have six 2011 lambs for sale, plus a few 2010 yearlings and a couple of older registered ewes we're ready to part with.  Please contact us quickly if you're interested, as we're planning to market them pretty agressively this year through Craigslist and local feed stores.  You can check out some of the pics on our For Sale page.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Lamb updates and a funny story about refugees

So I have two divergent topics for today--I'll start with an update on the lambs.  As I posted briefly last week, birthing season is in full force at the farm.  We've had 6 lambs born within the past week.  Sadly, one didn't make it due to unknown reasons, so we are left with 5 at this point, all of whom are healthy and spry.  I've not yet had an opportunity to take any decent photos, but plan to make it happen within the next day or so.  Rest assured, they are all cute as ever.  My favorite is a sweet little black ewe with a "flaw"--a white stripe on the top of her head--just adorable!

On to the other topic, which, as you probably guessed, involves our friends the refugees.  I debated about whether to post this here or on our refugee blog, One World Outreach, but decided it's more of a personal story than a professional one, so I opted to put it here.  This story is about cultural nuances, going with the flow, and having a sense of humor when communication takes a back seat to friendship and good intentions.
Yesterday I got a call at work around 2:30 in the afternoon from one of our refugee friends, Ta Paw.  I've talked a lot about him and his family in previous posts and on our One World Outreach blog.  Ta Paw doesn't speak much English, and I speak very little Karen, but the gist of our conversation was this:

Ta Paw:  Teacher, we miss you.  We want to see you today.  We will come to your house now.

Me:  Umm, I miss you too.  Today is not good.  Too busy today.

Ta Paw:  We can come now?

Me:  No.  I am at work.  No one is at home.  Not today.

Ta Paw:  Kai Pa is at home?  (Kai Pa is Aaron's name--it literally means "the father of Kai")

Me:  No.  Kai Pa is out of town.  He will not come home until tonight.

Ta Paw:  Okay, teacher. [click] (Our conversations always end abruptly like this....for some reason the "hello" and "goodbye" parts of phone conversations are seen as unnecessary!)

Fast forward a few hours...I pick up Kai, return home around 5 pm, give the boys a snack, then load up again to take Pla Shee to baseball practice from 6-7.  We get home about 7:30, around the same time as Aaron and Pu Lue (who had both been in Giddings helping Aaron's mom on the ranch over the weekend).  We eat a quick dinner, get the boys bathed, read a bedtime story, and put them to bed by 8:30.

I hop in the shower, ready to get into my pjs and veg on the sofa for a couple of hours rotting my brain while watching some mindless tv, and while I'm in the shower, Aaron comes into the bathroom to announce that Ta Paw and 14 of his family members and friends are in our living room!

What can you do but shake your head, recenter, put your clothes back on, and scan the pantry for snacks for 15?  Pla Shee and Kai heard the commotion and of course had to join the party.  Pla Shee must have said five times "Me and Kai are so lucky!  We get to stay up so late like grownups!". 

While it wouldn't have been my first choice to have a houseful of people over until 10:30 pm on a Monday night with no warning (I guess the "no warning" aspect is debatable, given my earlier phone conversation), after gathering myself a bit I realized that we are incredibly blessed.  We are blessed to have these people in our lives that love us and care about us so much that they think nothing of driving over an hour in the dark, in a strange new city, to visit us and tell us that they miss us.  That these people, who have almost nothing, who struggle with employment, language, health, and depression, would arrive at our home with smiles on their faces and bearing gifts of frozen chicken and hand-woven clothing.

Sometimes I get frustrated because of the sacrifices we've made in our work with the refugees.  Sometimes it's hard to make ends meet on one salary as we try to get our nonprofit, One World Outreach, up and running.  Sometimes our "alone time" turns into something far from it, as it did last night.  But at the end of the day, when I look around me and I see the faces of people who I love and who love me and my family, faces of people who have lost so much but yet still so freely give, I know that I am truly blessed.  I wouldn't change this crazy life for anything.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Spring Lambs are here!

We had our first lambs of the season born this week!  So far we have 3 girls (1 black, 1 white, 1 black with some very cute white spots) and 1 boy (white).  Here's a sneak peek of two of the lambs.  I'll post more pics this weekend.  All of our lambs are full-blooded babydolls, and we'll be selling them as unregistered stock this year--$300 a piece.  Shoot us an email if you're interested at

Spring Break in Houston

We spent about half of Spring Break in Houston visiting the family and had a fantastic time at the Houston Live Stock Show and Rodeo.  I'd never been, and it was really amazing.  They say things are always bigger in Texas, and the Houston Live Stock Show was certainly a great example.  Here's a video of Pla Shee is some kind of bubble contraption that he was just thrilled about.  It made me realize that I'm getting old, as the idea of running around in a clear plastic bubble in 85 degree weather was completely unappealiing to me.

Here he is riding on a camel.

We also spent a day at the beach in Galveston, which was fun, but Kai has decided he is not so much a fan of the ocean or sand.  Not good for a Marshallese boy who was born in Hawaii!  Sorry for the lack of photos--forgot my camera in the frenzy of the road trip.