Saturday, September 30, 2006

Introducing our new yarn!!!!

Today we are so happy to announce a new yarn you can find on our website! This is our FRANKEN YARN - Bwaaahaaaahaaahaa! It is the combined spinning soul of two good friends-- one being yours truly (a truly sassy spinner) and the other my friend James (aka Dr. Franken Fiber as he is known for his wonderfully cool batts!)--who lives so far away in Virginia! We each spin up a fun ply of yarn, then send it to the other to be completed with another ply of our own choosing and fun. It is so fun to get the yarn in the mail to see what he has done with it-- and then of course we each keep half to knit, weave or sell. A long distance spin-in of sorts!

This is not a new idea, actually I think the first people I saw doing this were our friends Angela and Reenie of with their Ying & Yang yarns.... Thanks for a great idea you two!

We will also be offering new yarn called Peas in a Pod yarn, created by me and my good friend Carolyn of Michigan. I am on the hot seat with this offering as Carolyn's single ply is sitting here waiting for me to decide what to spin with it! Watch for more yarns as we get them spun up!

Hope you are enjoying some nice fall weather--it is great weather for sheep!!!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Hooray for healthy (finally) Goaties!!!

Here we have our beautiful older goaties, Shimmer (right) and Magpie (left). They arrived here at our farm two years ago in horrible condition, absolutely crawling with bugs, very under weight and their age was not working 'for' them.... Their owner of 8 years was told that their fiber was no good any more (??) and she just dumped them. They are now 11, before they got to us, Shimmer was left on her own to fight pneumonia in the middle of winter, she did make it (no thanks to any outside intervention) but did lose her right ear to frost bite. A sad sad story HOWEVER, we sheared them last week and we are so happy to say they are now at the most healthy we think they can be!!!! Hooray! Two years it took but they are definitely worth every second....

A lot of fussing went into getting them healthy, they are fortunate to have their front teeth, which helps them maintain weight easier, Shimmer is the one I wish would gain just a few more pounds before winter but with her arthritis, it would probably be just as fine for her to stay a little on the light side. Magpie looks like a more middle age goat now, she is quite perky and happy!

The have a special Goat Condo and pasture they share with our Vincent Van Goat and Bella La Goatie-- who are also very old goats. This way, we can feed them special feed, keep hay in front of them and keep them dosed up with special supplements of MSM, Glocosomine and Chondroiten. We also add a little touch of Bute paste (pain reliever) for them when the weather is cooler and we see them getting stiff and sore. We are lucky to have these sweet goats and also the pastures and housing to keep our groups of critters in the best situation for them to be happy and healthy! They are our blessing!

Hope you are all enjoying lots of fiber art, spinning and fall weather--this is our favorite time of year-- great sheep weather! Watch for our update this weekend featuring our new 'Franken Yarn'! More soon!

Friday, September 15, 2006

A little sheep and his pile of 'leaves'!

Our little Frasier sheep was an orphan this spring at our friend Graham and Margaret's farm. His mom passed away when he was very little and he is still VERY little--about the size of a --oh-- cocker spaniel? And he is now about 6 months old! He is the sweetest little sheep and has a much bigger attitude than his size! He loves to have fun and bunks with our old babysitter Kelly, who needs a slower paced bunch of sheep due to an injury in her past (before she came here) that has left her arthritic and sore. She is older and prefers to watch over our lambs so Frasier was a perfect fit for that tiny group.

Frasier is a cross of a British Suffolk and a Blue Face crossed mama so we really do not know what type of fleece he will have--just beyond cute for sure! His favorite trick right now is to play 'king of the hay bale' with his friends Brenna the Corriedale lamb and Miette, our baby Angora goatie. It is a mad dash as we carry the bales through their pen to feed all the sheep on that side of the barn. As soon as we put the bales down, Fraiser launches to be the first on standing on top-- often trying to do that while we are carrying the bales too!

The other morning, he made a leap onto the bale but I had removed the twine already--resulting in a very confused little sheep! He fell in! Now it is his FAVORITE past time in the morning, really reminds me of a little boy with a fresh pile of raked leaves--remember how fun that was? He is quite a cutie and if he wouldn't take such offense, I would love to keep him that small and have a house sheep! hahaha! Good thing he still likes to snuggle with me right? Off to sleep for a while, one more show this weekend, sounds like Sunday will be a rain out but tomorrow should be lots of fun--if you are near Monroe, stop in and say hello at Cheese Days!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Congratulations Graham & Margaret!!!

We are just home from the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival and proud to mention that our friends Graham & Margaret won second place in the double coated spinning fleece category with a beautiful fleece from one of their Scottish Black Face lambs! It was the first time any of their fleeces have been shown and we are so proud! The sheep pictured is our Devlyn who my hubby adopted this past spring from Graham & Margaret's flock. He is a great example of the quality sheep (SBF) that they raise on acres and acres of well cared for pastures. They also raise North Country Cheviots, British Suffolk and a few crosses of the breeds that are called 'mules'.

We are lucky to purchase their wool each year and just love spending the day there at shearing time in the rolling hills that surround their farm. They also raise working Border Collies so it is a great treat to see them at work moving the sheep about on shearing day. And of course being around a ton of lambs is just a day in heaven for me too!!!! ha!

We got to visit with lots of our sheep friends and even met some of our website customers that we have never met in person before--it was just way too fun to have a booth there with so much going on to see and do! Off I go to get ready for one more show this weekend--if you are in the Monroe area this weekend please pop in and say hello! Cheese Days is a great way to spend a day--lots of fun activities and of course CHEESE!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Bless our neighbors!!!

We have the most wonderful neighbors--in fact the only ones on our side of this little county road! Mom and Dad are very dedicated to their six children and all are homeschooled with the exception of the eldest who just started high school last year. I cannot say enough about how wonderful these people are, their kids are great, polite and the entire family just enjoys life in the country--and their critters! If you need anything, any time they are right there to help and we so appreciate them all.

I am mentioning them today as people I admire for a number of reasons, but in this time of high gas prices (which elevates animal feed prices), they have adopted four older horses to give them a total of 6-- almost enough for them all to trail ride together! The horses had been outgrown by their former family and were too much work for the parents to handle on their own. They needed a home and are lucky to be retiring of sorts on a 15 acre pasture, with lots of people to brush them, take care of them and just love them always.

Two are older than 22 and needing some special care to get back on track but the other two are around 10 and seem to be doing very well. They join two other horses who we love to see go by--one reminds me so much of my old Crissy horse....

They rescued a little donkey this past winter who needed desperate attention to his poor feet and months later, they just got the word from their shoer that he was ok to start riding again--the kids are elated and oddly enough, so is that donkey! He loves attention and follows those kids anywhere! Grateful?

Anyway, we are lucky to live near this wonderful family who has opened their farm to some needy critters--again! There are hard times forcing some tough decisions in the farm/animal world and we are seeing a big reduction in sheep flocks in the area too as hay prices sky rocket.

We are getting ready for our last two shows of the year so if there is something you don't see on the website right now, always email! I am so behind I don't know if I will ever catch up!!!! ha! Off to visit the sheep.....