Just before Christmas I glanced out into my paddock and saw something white lurking in the grass.

I knew it wasn't one of the usual paddock occupants, as the goats are brown, the ponies are black, brown and orange and my usual sheep are grubby and decidedly off-white.

A quick hike across the grass revealed that Mindy the sheep had produced two fresh new lambs.

My first reaction was to ring my husband and say "I told you so", because despite my assurances that she had lambs on board, he had been adamant that she didn't.


Really, only Mindy knew for sure, but I had been home the day she staged a ram raid, busting through the fence between us and the neighbours for a tryst with the boy next door.

Next door's ram is a proper show-off, so I guess it wasn't surprising that Mindy would succumb to his charms. He spends hours playing with a tyre-swing hanging from a tree in his paddock, bunting it high into the air and then catching it on the back-swing with a skilful head-butt and a sly glance over his shoulder to make sure Mindy is watching.

I've been waiting for him to time it wrong and end up with the tyre round his neck, but no, he's a sheep with some pretty good ninja skills.

And obviously considerable animal attraction, given that Mindy stuffed her well-upholstered woolly frame through a six-wire fence to go on a play-date with him.

She came back the next day all dishevelled and with a smug look on her face, and hasn't even looked twice at poor ninja-sheep since, despite his best efforts and some pretty cool new moves he's been working on with the tyre swing.

I'm not sure if she's even told him he's a dad ... of twin bouncing baby boys.

They bounced even more when the grandkids came to check them out later that day. They weren't too sure that being cuddled was what baby boy-lambs are meant to be doing, but they didn't have much say in the matter.

The grandboys also demanded to be allowed to name the lambs. I decided I had quite a lot of say in that matter. The last sheep-related naming I allowed them to do landed me with lambs called Fluffy and Stuffy.


Then the 6-year-old spied a large brown spot on the hind end of one of the lambs.

"That one's called Spotto."

"No, it isn't," I told him.

"And that one's called Botto," yelled the 4-year-old pointing at lamb number two.

"No", I told him. "It's not."

Being boy lambs they are destined to go into the freezer and I was thinking of calling them nothing at all, so as not to get attached.

The unfortunately named Fluffy was also destined for the freezer but now eats out of your hand, and the mere suggestion of roast Fluffy for Sunday dinner brings forth wails and protests from the small folk who named him.

Stuffy, on the other hand, is a ewe and was meant to produce baby Stuffies. She hates human company, stays well out of arms' reach even when goodies filched from the horse's feed bags are on offer, and when I tried to catch her for drenching she somersaulted over the rail of the yard like an Olympic gymnast and took off running.

I put it down to the awful name. And maybe the cuddles.

At a pinch, I thought the new lambs could be named something that would remind me of where they were going and not to get friendly with them. I was thinking Mince, or Stew. Not that that worked particularly well on Minty who was meant to be combined with mint sauce...

So no, I said to the grandboys. You may not name the new lambs.

Spotto and Botto are doing just fine despite being born late in the season. Spotto is a little taller than Botto but they are both growing very well and coping with all the essentials like being caught and docked and drenched ... and cuddled.

In the meantime, the vege garden is living life in the fast lane and all my lettuces and spinach have bolted to seed, and the rain has made the cabbages all gross. It made sense to get a hooved garbage disposal in the form of a pig, which is also destined for you-know-where.

The grandboys came to visit in the weekend and despite my best efforts to lure them in the opposite direction to raid the strawberry patch they spied the pig and raced over.

I now have a pig called Lightening Bolt.
It doesn't, however, do cuddles. Yet.