Melissa Lines: Farmer, Shepherdess, Educator, Marketer

Running a farm and raising fifty or more sheep, a handful of beef cattle, and two horses is not a job for the faint of heart. And Melissa Lines is NOT Little Bo Peep. It was a farm visit when she was 4 years old that convinced Melissa that she wanted to work with animals, but it took decades – and a corporate career – to bring her to the point where she could actually make it happen.
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Voices From the Farm: "Lady" is No Lady

Now, with 7 sheep… Missy, the dog… Cricket, the cat… Mickey, the canary… and the now pregnant Matushka… our menagerie was about to expand by leaps and bounds!
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Voices From the Farm: Seven Sheep! We Need Another Fence... or Two... or Possibly Three

Spring 1966, we have 7 sheep: Mama and Sure to Go, their 4 lambs, and the old ram, Hercules. We need another fence, or possibly two, built. And thanks to the “fencing fund,” we can do it!
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Voices From the Farm: The First Lambs Are Born (Part 3)

The morning after Mama’s lambs were born we arose early and went to check on our sheep. We found we were not so lucky after all. Mama had decided that she only had one lamb, and had totally rejected the little male. When he came near her, she bunted him away. He, of course, kept trying to nurse each time his sister nursed, but Mama would whirl and butt him with her head.
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Voices From the Farm: The First Lambs Are Born (Part 2)

Now, I was going to have to learn to do tail docking, and possibly castrating. I had made a prior decision not to use some of the cruder methods of removing these appendages.
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Voices From the Farm: The First Lambs Are Born

Early April, and we were on “pins and needles” awaiting the birth of our first lambs. Even Jerry had joined the ‘expectant’ group, but we did not really know what to ‘expect’ from our two ewes. We had no background information on them, other than that Mama was the “old ewe”, and came to us with only one lamb.
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Voices From the Farm: Zip Lost and Lady Found

Our menagerie was down to only one dog and a canary, after our beloved old fox terrier, Zip, was run over in the summer. That was a very sad day for us. We had had her for over 15 years, and she had traveled with us all the years that Jerry was welding on water towers.
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Voices From the Farm: We Survive Our First Winter

In her last installment, our Minnesotan shepherdess, Lea McEvilly, with no idea how to build a fence and shorter than most of the posts, simply did it! This time we learn what winters in Minnesota mean for farmers; a good root cellar makes all the difference!
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Voices From the Farm: How Lea Found Her Farm

In her first contribution to GoodFood World, Lea McEvilly described the decision process it took to finally sell her flock of sheep and retire after farming for nearly 46 years. In today’s contribution, we go back to the time when Lea found her farm.
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Voices From the Farm: It's All about Sheep!

From the frozen hills of southeastern Minnesota, not far from the intersection of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa, we got an email recently from Lea McEvilly, 84, shepherdess. After nearly 46 years of raising and caring for as many as 300 sheep on 80 acres with just the help of her dogs for most of those years, Lea is selling her last remaining flock.
Read more: Voices From the Farm: It’s All about Sheep!