Archive for September, 2012

Getting Ready for OFFF

September 18, 2012

For all my good intentions, I just can’t seem to post on anything like a regular basis. I mean to, and then life happens, and soon it’s been weeks. I admire those of you out there who find something new to say on a regular timetable, and can’t really imagine having something new to tell the world every day. Oh well, it is what it is.

I am busy trying to get ready for Oregon Flock & Fiber Festival (OFFF) this weekend. If you happen to be in the Portland, Oregon area, head on over to the Canby fairgrounds. I’ll be in the sheep barn, sharing a booth with Laura. Next to us will be the booth for the American Romeldale/CVM Association. It’s a fun show, with lots of great vendors and animals too. I still want to spend a day at the carder, since I’ve got some black Romeldale and black alpaca just begging to be blended with some gold angelina. I’ve also spent several days working on a pair of new farm signs. I will hang them back to back at OFFF, so I’ll be visible from across the barn. I made 2 so that I can put them up in the sheep and goat barns at next years fairs.  Due to privacy issues, I have blurred out my e-mail and phone number, both of which are on the signs. This is a large version of my business card. I designed the celtic knot ram, and I’m pretty happy with how this turned out. Here’s hoping they hold up for many years use!

I’ve also managed to finish 2 more patterns to print out and take to OFFF, one for a scarf and one for a pair of mittens. After I get back from Canby, I’ll work on getting all my patterns up on Ravelry for sale. I’ve knit these both up as demos, and this is my mom modeling for me.  I couldn’t convince her to put on a long sleeved shirt, since it’s almost 90 degrees today.

The goat girls have gone off to visit with a husband. I’ll get them back in a month or so, hopefully pregnant. I am very excited about the prospect of having fresh goat milk to make cheese with as well as to drink. I’m using a boar buck, since I’m not interested in registered babies at this time. The breeder I got the girls from normally waits until her does are yearlings to breed them, but I’ve done my research & I’m comfortable with the idea of breeding them now. They are both a good size, and this way they will kid as yearlings. If I show them at fair again next summer, they will show as freshened yearlings instead of dry, and I won’t have to wait a whole year to get milk.

The ewe lambs are still in the movable pen, mowing the front yard for me. They are doing a much better job than the adult ewes did, and (knock wood), haven’t escaped from the pen. Depending on the lushness of the patch I put them over, they get moved in 4 – 24 hours. It’s a lot of work, but they are growing well. It always strikes me as funny how they will be belly deep in goodies to eat, but everyone’s head is through the fence and they are eating stuff outside the pen. Silly girls.

These are the results of Laura and my ice-dyeing a few weeks ago. We are both very happy with how these all turned out. Some will be used in the raffle drawings we have at OFFF, and the rest will be for sale. I may have to get some supplies to make a bunch of t-shirts for myself.



Catching Up Again

September 2, 2012

Well, I survived the 2nd county fair. Did ok there too, but nothing special. We had the same judge for the goats as at the first fair, but she saw most of the classes completely differently. Oh well, it was fun. This fair is much more like an old-fashioned county fair, so much more relaxed than the first. A little prize money added to the budget, which is never a bad thing.

The turkeys have been growing by leaps and bounds. I’m done to 7, which is the minimum I need to have any left for me. Today they got moved out to their new pen. They made the move fine, but Kid the Elder and I both ended up with huge scratches on our arms, and DIL ended up with a small bloody nose. Kid and I spent most of 2 days hanging netting over and around what used to be one of my goat pens. The little shelter in it unfortunately was partially burned by my idiot neighbor when he was burning weeds along the property line. I’ve jerry-rigged it for now. At some future date I will dig out the corner post of the shelter and replace it.

 There are plenty of weeds to keep them busy, they will have shelter from the worst of the weather, and they have 2 perches (one under the tarp, and one in the corner of the pen. They ate well after they were released in here, and when I went out to feed, they were hunkered down in the shade of the tarp:  You may have to click on the picture to see it bigger to pick them out. Amazing how they can disappear, as big as they already are.

Yesterday, I drove out to Laura’s. She had agreed to dye t-shirts for ARCA (our sheep breed association), and a large box with shirts, ball caps, tote bags and coffee mugs had been delivered. Since I had just finished test knitting a hat she wrote a pattern for, I drove over to give her my notes and to help with the dyeing. Laura has been playing with ice dyeing, and so we soaked all the cloth items in soda ash while we ate lunch, then scrunched them up on some filbert drying screens she had. Then we spread 30 pounds of ice across everything, and she started at one end with blues and purples,

 and I started at the other end with fuchsia, orange and yellow. We met in the middle, adding in green as we went  We spread plastic wrap over the top of everything and weighted down the edges with rocks, and then we tipped her skirting table over the top of everything to keep the wind from blowing things away. She’s going to rinse things off tonite or tomorrow morning and wash them to set the dyes. I’m really excited to see how everything turns out. We do a couple of raffle baskets at Oregon Flock and Fiber (OFFF), and this year will be using the tote bags to hold the donated items.

OFFF is coming up soon, and I need to get working on a few things for my inventory. Laura and I will be sharing a booth in the animal barn (which we also did last year). I still need to finish my farm sign too, but I did manage to pick up a couple of things at Michael’s the other day, which will look good on the tables filled with goodies. Plus, they are obviously sent by my daughter, since they both have her motto on them (Dance Like Nobody’s Watching)