Saturday, October 8, 2011

Algonquin Mill Fall Festival

We couldn't have asked for better weather for our festival this year.  This was a shot of our spinning cabin that we sell are ware's in and about, some morning conversation before the day began.  The fire felt good in the early morning, but it wasn't there for us, notice the pots around the fire.  We have dye pots going during the festival, making for some wonderfully dyed skeins, wool or what ever your heart desires.

another shot of the spinners cabin with various items to sell.
Notice the beautiful fall leaves in the background.
Hand made shawls and scarfs for sale.

Many, many wonderful skeins of handspun yarn for sale.

This is the Two Story Log Home that our Guild staffs, along with the spinners cabin.  This is a beautiful cabin that was moved to the Algonquin Mill Complex.  My pic. is not the best due to the morning sun .

This is one of the downstairs rooms in the two story log home.  This would have been the kitchen area, we usually have two demonstrators in each room of the home.  Notice on the right, the barn beam loom.  What a massive loom!

This years festival have been wonderful, I've met many new friends this year that I've invited to come and visit us at our monthly meeting in the School House.  We meet the 3rd Saturday of every month, from approx. 10am to 3pm., anyone / everyone is welcome to visit.  We have one more day to enjoy our festival and hope to meet more new friends then.
...til I can post again, may your fiber stash always be full and your spinning wheel always whirring.........

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Great Trail Festival

Great Trail Festival has come and gone.  I spent two days demonstrating at the festival this year and met many wonderful people.  I hope that those that I spoke with find time to come to one of the Algonquin Spinning and Weaving Guilds meetings and get to see, meet other fiber friends.
I didn't remember to take my camera to get pictures, darn it.

The next festival the Guild participates in will be Yankee Peddler Festival in Canal Fulton, Ohio this event is 6 days spread out over three weekends. Sept. 10th, 11th, 17th, 18th, 24th & 25th.
I will be demonstrating the 11th and 25th. 
This event is a demonstration of the time period 1776 through 1825, we will be wearing and working with items that would have been available in that time period.
This festival is also a great time to see other demonstrators with time period wares.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Where has the summer gone???

As sit here writing this post I wonder just where has the summer gone?  As fall is in the air and I am just not ready for what is to come.....snow and such.
Did I make too many project lists for this year?  Well, yes I probably did, but I didn't get them all done either!
From shearing to lambing then getting in the garden to maintaining the yard, making hay, attending group meetings, trying to work on projects, add in family functions, working a "day" job, monday through friday.

Now at this time of the year we (Guild) have Festivals that we participate in for the next two months, beginning with Great Trail this weekend in Carrollton, Ohio. 

So, what is the answer?  I don't really know.....but I will try to slow down, do the things I enjoy, don't set myself up for failure with too many projects on my list....just don't make the list......but enjoy the ones you do finish. 


This is my first clothing project, although it is not finished I thought I needed to post something.  I just purchased the buttons.  I only have to add the front bands and tuck in my loose ends and I will be finished.
This was a great pattern for a first time project by: "knitting pure & simple", v neck neckdown cardigan for women #994.
The Spinning/Weaving Guild that I am a member of,
decided to try this pattern as a group project, for any of the membership that wanted to try  the pattern.  This way we would be able to help each other through the pattern if there were question or you just got stuck.

The fleece I used came from one of my Shetlands, a fawn ewe named Gwendolyn, although she is no longer with us I will always have this sweater to remind me of her.  I had her fleece blended with a similar color of alpaca fiber for this project.

I spun a medium worsted yarn for this sweater, a future note to myself when spinning for a clothing item; I must spin a much finer yarn.  I love this sweater that I've made, but I don't think that I would be able to wear it all day long, the sweater is a little bulky.  It would work as a light coat if you were outside all day.

I have a future pull over mock turtle neck sweater planned, but I will take into consideration what I've learned from this project to make the next one even better.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Ohio Grasslands & Forage Council Grazing Tour

Today I have taken my first "grazing farm tour"  The "OFGC" was in our area, eastern Ohio for the first time.  This event co-ensides with the Ohio Sheep Day which will be Saturday.
It was just nice to see other operations and get some ideas for pasture management.  I did get to meet some folks from across the state, although I am terrible at remembering names, we did all "talk sheep".
This pic. shows the grasses of a rotational grazing operation, brome grass, white clover and orchard grass.

 I couldn't get this pic. to enlarge.  This farmer, was showing his portable watering system.  He runs a 160p.s.i. line with a quick couple, hydrolic fitting as the connector for watering with an on/off valve.  He grazes 43 cows and calves and one bull on 1 acre per day, a 24hrs. period then moves them.

This farmer feels that the red angus are more heat tolerant than the black angus.  He shoots for 1250# cows.  He sells his calves in December when they are 500-600 #.  His goal is to run more cows on less ground & using less hay.  He tries to graze into November, then keep 50 cows and feed 100 round bales per year.

They follow the grazed paddocks with 75 broiler chickens.  These are two weeks old, they will be finished at eight weeks.  They send them to a local processor and take orders for birds. The chickens follow the cattle and manage fly control.

This is the traveling enclosure that the fryers are in.  They keep an electric netting fence around it to keep racoons and such out.

This was an inventive idea.  A cheap wore our travel trailer, converted into a traveling chicken house.
I'm not certain of the spelling of these breed names, I just scribbled them down, Americanas and Barder Rocker.  I'm not a chicken person, hope I've got the names somewhat right.....
They have 50 birds, they get about 48 eggs a day and sell them to local businesses and individuals.
They also use the chickens to follow the cattle in paddocks for fly control.  They market them as free range.

An inside view of the chicken trailer

Nesting boxes inside the converted travel trailer.

This was our Farm Tour "Bus".

Another operation we visited was a commercial hay/grain operation.  We didn't get to check out his equipment, which was all put away in buildings, we did gather in his large shop and he spoke of lime & fertilizer and the like.  A representative from Agland  was also there.  They did discuss a problem that I had not heard of, recent findings of fields that have been planted with timothy and orchard grass and these grasses are dying out after a year, they do not know if it is a disease or insect problem.  But this is not good since these are two grasses that are in much demand.  They mentioned that Penn. State has more information about what they think it might be.  I haven't researched that yet.
The last farm we visited for the day was a 250 commercial ewe operation.  This farm practices rotational grazing also.  The sheep are of a mixed breed, they try to have some lamb in the fall and winter to have lambs to sell in December and for Easter.  The husband and wife team both work off their farm, so their farm practice has to work around their schedules with lambing and such.

The rams used in their operation.

Some pretty flowers sprucing up the out house.

...more pretty flowers.

this concludes my day on the farm grazing tours.   Tomorrow will be the Ohio Sheep Day, hopefully more pics. to post.....

Monday, May 30, 2011

How did I spend my Memorial Day?

Since the rain had finally stopped, I had to get into the garden and til it.  I started early in the morning because I knew it was going to get hot, 90 degrees today.
I finished about 11:00 am, so I decided to wash the rest of my fleeces so I can start working with them.
I washed 10 fleeces today!  I am beat, too much for one person.  Next time I will have to recruit help, maybe a labor for fiber deal.

I now have everything washed, except the britch.  I'm not too concerned about that right now. 
It just feels good knowing that it is done and I can walk downstairs at any time, look over my fleeces and pull out what ever I have the desire to  work with.
Fun Stuff!

Day 2, final day of Great Lakes Fiber Show

I took this picture because of their sign, I don't know if you can read it completely or not, but it says "Look !! No Rain Today !

This weekend was the first nice weather that we have had in two months

I had to buy a skein of was calling me!  It is a blend of SuperWash Merino, Bamboo & Nylon.  I don't have a clue what I will make with it, I just want to spin it.  Maybe I've save it and enter it in next years competition...hmmm.

Always good to carry a camera, you never know what you might want to take a picture of.  Someone was selling these feeders for $800.00.  I've been telling my husband this is the type of feeder that I would like to have, now he can make one for me. 

That is it for this years Local Fiber Event.  I think there is a Mid-Ohio Fiber event in August, but I have to do more checking on that one and get the details.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Fleece / Skein results

This year I entered a fleece from Harvest Thyme Autum Thyme, she has a very crimpy soft fleece.  I entered her fleece into the fine fleece competition and she took first place in the natural color division.  I am very happy to have Autum Thyme, she came into my flock this past fall and she gave us a grey single ewe lamb this spring that has an awesome fleece too. 

This year I decided to also enter a skein in the skein competition, I haven't in the past, but I thought that I would support the local competition.  My skein is under the red 2nd place ribbon, I chose to try my hand at a fine 2ply yarn.  I spun a few ounces from one of my finest fleeced ewes, the skein came out wonderful, the judge liked it too but chose the green spun skein over it because it was a blend of silk, wool and seacell, which she felt would have been harder to spin and keep a consistent yarn.

We have had great weather for this Fiber Show, a good crowd too.  Hope to get a few more pictures tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

2011 Great Lakes Fiber Show

Time passes so quickly, before I realize it almost a month has passed since my last post. 
I wanted to share info. about a local fiber show, The Great Lakes Fiber Show in Wooster, Ohio.
This is the 16th Annual Show and it keeps growing every year, the show is only a two day event.  Saturday,May 28th 10am-5pm & Sunday, May 29th 10am-4pm.  If you are not able to make it check out their web site: 
Two full days of much to see and do, classes to take (I'm taking a class on steeks), a skein competition (which I have prepared a fine two-ply skein to enter).  A fleece competition (of which I have entered a fine moorit fleece). 
Eighty plus vendors will be there, also a sheep show and sale.

I will posted soon after the show to update how things turned out.

Keep those spinning wheels turning with great shetland fiber!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Ram lambs available

I have posted some pictures of two ram lambs that I have for sale.  Please look under the "for sale" tab.  I've recently updated my blog format and am still working on it.
These two rams are 3weeks old today.  They have unique patterning, take a look.  More pictures will be posted as they continue to develop.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Three deliveries in one night...

I've been checking on these girls for over a week, late in the evening then again early in the morning.
Well last night I didn't go out and check on them.  To my surprise, this morning all three of my ewes delivered twins...last night.

This is Lacy with ram and ewe lambs, both black like her.  Hope they keep their color.

Meet Galaxy, she gave us twin ewes.  She was bred to an HST ram.

sooo cute, they both have white spotting on their faces, my guess is that their color will change.  Can't wait to see.

This is Constance, with two lovely little moorit ewes.  The sire is Clyde, our moorit ram with a micron avg. of 24.6

Can't wait to see these girls develop, right now they are dark brown, but they both have sugar lips and one of them has white hairs in her ears.  My guess is that they will lighten up, but it doesn't matter.  I just love all those shades of brown.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Flora's lamb

I didn't expect Flora to be the next to deliver, she hadn't developed much of an udder yet.
Boy will they surprise you sometimes. 

Flora delivered this single ewe lamb this morning.  She appears to be a dark moorit with a little bit of white on the top of her head.  The sire is a HST ram.

Only three to go, the tally so far......7 lambs, 4 ewes, 3 rams.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Excelsis comes through with a ewe lamb

We spent several hours in the barn last night to assist with the delivery of this single ewe.  I really thought that Excelsis was going to have twins at least.  She was so big. 
But, just one good sized ewe lamb.
Isn't she a cutie?  Does anyone have any idea of what pattern or marking she would be considered?  As you can see Mom is solid moorit and Dad is Grey, badgerface. 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Claire has triplets!

This is Claire, Reg# S21316.  She is the last of my ewes to deliver that were bred to Mercury #W00735.  For the last week I have been going out at night and checking on them and again in the morning.  This morning when I went out one was born, it didn't take very long and the rest followed.
Claire ended up giving us two rams and one ewe lamb.

 This little guy was the first one born, he is spotted, appears white but under that baby fluff he is grey.

This is the second born a ewe, has katmoget pattern.  I think she will be grey, she didn't get cleaned off very well yet, but of course mom's a little busy right now.

This is the third born ram, much darker, definitely spotted, not certain about color.  Appears moorit maybe since around the eyes he looks to be brown.

Group photo!

another group photo.

These girls are due next.  Excelsis on the left is due today.  Hopefully we will have more lambs yet today and Constance on the right is as big as can be for her little frame, all uddered up and ready to go.  Hopefully both will have lambs yet this weekend.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Lamb #2 of the season...

This little guy was born one week ago, I've finally taken my camera out to get some pics. of him.  He is out of, Sire: Mercury W00735 and Dam: Lialac S26912.  He appears to have some spots.  Can't wait til the rest of the girls deliver.  I've got one more ewe that I bred with Mercury.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Start of 2011 Lambing....

We have had our first lamb of the season today.  I had a slight miscalculation with my dates.  I had figured the first one to be due in about 10 days.  My husband was looking out the kitchen window this morning to see a little lamb standing in the barnyard.  He called me at work, with a slight tone of panic in his voice.  He scurried outside to gather up the new mother and her lamb into a corner pen in the barn.  Numerous telephone calls to me over a short period of time to walk him through the experience.
He insisted that I come home early from work, by the time I came home he had everything well in hand.
After revising the due dates, I've informed him that approximately next Wednesday or Thursday he will get to experience this again, as we have two that will be due. 

Pictures below show a new little ewe lamb that looks to be Katmoget, grey out of S29349 HarvestThyme Autum Thyme (Moorit) and W00735 WhisprgPines Mercury (Grey Katmoget)

Below pic. shows close up of fleece.