Many of you are familiar with our naming system for sheep and goats. When I started out with livestock in the early 1980's, I just named the new babies whatever came to mind. As the years went on, I started having themes for each year's names - for the cheese year we had Brie, Gouda, Edam... Beatles year was Ruby Tuesday, Rita and Lucy... herbs year was a big one with Pennyroyal, Cowslip, Marjoram still being the grand-dams of our flock. We tried a Lord of the Rings year and discovered there were no where near enough female characters in that series! We had a water year after the drought and still have Yampa and Erie.
But after 20 years of naming 20-30-40 babies a year, the themes dried up. So we started with the alphabet. Now it's pretty easy. We know Bea and Bramble were born in the same year. Abracadabra is a year older than Be-Be and two years older than Cappucino. This year is an "F" year.
We thought we were expecting our first lambs and kids mid-March and figured that would give us enough time to haul shavings, chip wood and make some dry clean places. However, Dapper Dan the ram has amazed us. He only weighs about 75 pounds and is our shortest sheep. He is purebred jacob and very typey - he just never grew. We didn't think there was any way he could reach our bigger crossbred and Icelandic ewes to breed them.
Well.. last Sunday, the gorgeous, sunny day between snowstorms, Cocoa, one of our crossbred jacob/corridale ewes presented us with a beautiful spotted, frosted, big, energetic ewe lamb. I was leaning towards Farli for a name when Lena pointed out that her name was obvious - meet "First."
First is the first lamb Cocoa has ever had, First is Dapper Dan's first progeny. First is the first lamb born on Havencroft and the first lamb of 2010. It's a good thing this is an F year, 'cause I don't think she could be named anything else!