Monday, October 27, 2008

Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF)

Sheep, old friends, new friends, lots of colorful fiber, wonderful sheep artist, spinning, showing, selling (bittersweet) & an overall good time...

What a great 3 day weekend we just had at the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair in Asheville, NC!! Thursday evening we loaded up quite a few Shetlands--to show and to sell. SAFF is a great fiber event that is very close to home--about 25 minutes.

We didn't attend the NC State Fair for the first time in many years. With 2 daughters in college and SAFF being on the weekend, we decided it would be too difficult this year.

Rothey, Katie, and I settled the sheep in the Ag. Center and ate a late supper at Subway. We enjoyed a little extra sleep on Friday morning and leisurely returned to SAFF. We show on Saturday and Sunday, so Friday is a day to enjoy all related to fiber! Friday is a day to talk sheep and check out the booths full of great stuff!! It was very cold and rainy. We ate at our favorite burger joint again, Fuddruckers and picked up mineral while we were in Asheville. Back at the barn we discussed more sheep things with some sales along the way. Some of my roving and spinning wheel hooks were available in one of the booths inside. I also entered two fleeces in the show and sale area. This was to try and sell them mainly. Lauren came up after classes and work on the campus of Gardner-Webb University. We enjoyed supper with a big group from the 4-H club we used to be part of when the girls were younger.

Saturday and Sunday are show days. Letty Klein was our judge this year. The junior show is Sat. which was Lauren's last time in this group. (My girls are all grown up.) Lauren had a 1st place ewe lamb in a large Shetland class- Amelia. Jane was 4th. She had a second and third place with Butterscotch and Sprinkles in the yearling class. Lauren's Annie won the aged ewe class and she is 7 years old. Annie went on to win Champion Shetland Ewe--not bad for an older gal! Jane was 2nd and Amelia was 4th out of the fleece class that had 13 sheep participating.

On Sunday in the open show we had a 2nd place ram lamb with Wilbur, a 2nd and 4th place with Amelia and Minnie Pearl in the ewe lamb class, 1st and 2nd with Butterscotch and Sprinkles in the yearling class, and our best aged ewes were 2nd with Annie and 4th with Cara. Out of an all breeds pair of ewes class, Katie and Lauren placed 3rd with Cara and Sprinkles. (This pair was the Supreme Champion Pair at the Mt. State Fair in Sept.) We had a 2nd place fleece with Wilbur and Amelia was 3rd in this class.

Even better than winning--we were able to place 4 ram lambs, 2 ewe lambs, and 4 wethers in great homes from Tenn., Georgia, South Carolina, and of course, NC. I sold 6 balls of roving and 3 spinning wheel hooks as well as one of the raw fleeces in the show/sale. I sent the other one with Zeilingers to be processed. That was SUCCESS!!

My purchases-- a Lendrum very fast flyer--Merry Christmas to me (Now only if I could figure out how to thread the thing--why doesn't anything come with directions?), some silk to mix with my yarn, some specialty fiber to spin, a print by an amazing artist that depicts sheep in all kinds of situations, a sheep pulling a cart with 2 bags of wool figurine, and 3 buttons that say, "Got Sheep?", "I love Shetland", and "I love spinning".

What a weekend!! It was fun, relaxing (believe it or not), and all around worthwhile. We arrived home in daylight, unloaded, fed sheep, fed ourselves, sent Lauren back to college and tried to clean the dust and dirt from our stuff that was in the barn!! Aren't sheep fun?? ;)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Love Is In The Air!!

Saturday, October 18th---My nephew, Timmy's wedding-- a beautiful, cold fall day in Mills River, NC.

Lauren and Katie pose with the ring bearer, my great nephew, Drew.

My sister, Cindy and my
brother-in-law, Steve come down the "aisle".

The groom and groomsmen arrived in a 1940 maroon Ford truck. The bridesmaids arrived in a 1957 Chevrolet convertible. The bride was driven in by her father in a 1956 Ford Thunderbird. What a grand entrance!!

Lauren's father and Timmy built the gazebo just for this special occasion.
Mr. and Mrs. Timmy Starling

The grandparents celebrate with the happy couple after the wedding.

The wedding took place in Timmy and Lauren's backyard. The reception was held in a large building where all the antique cars are kept. We had barbeque (made by Steve) and enjoyed listening to a live bluegrass band. When the happy couple left we all held sparklers and there were fireworks.

It was a beautiful way to celebrate a relationship that started between the two in middle school!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Fridays And Fall Days

Fridays and fall days are my favorites. Why? Friday is exciting because it is the last day of the work week. Working with middle schoolers all week can be exhausting. Friday lets me know that I have made it through the week. I can look forward to Lauren coming home from college which means that our little family is all together again for the weekend. We always go out to eat after taking care of our sheep. A real treat was going to Asheville last week to eat at Fuddruckers, our favorite hamburger joint!! Sometimes it's Hot Dog World. Last night we went to Chick-fil-a. Friday also means that I can sleep a little longer in the morning. :)

Fall days in western North Carolina are beautiful. We woke to a grey morning that turned into a sunny afternoon. Since Rothey didn't cut hay, we enjoyed watching the sheep enjoy eating fallen leaves. Our colors are getting better but we're not quite there yet.

Emily and Charlotte enjoy this weather along with us!

Here's mom, Shania, with her girls. They still don't get too far away from her. These are 3 of our favorite sheep! Can you tell? My daughter asked me why I took so many pictures of them.

This picture should be the first. We came to let them into a little side pasture. Notice this one is free of leaves. See those round hay bales in the background? It is so good to know that we have plenty this year and won't have to worry with winter feedings! Last year we cut it real close. It was the first time that we fed all that there was to feed. (Some of the hay was a couple of years old.)

This is the flock at our house. We have many more sheep at my parents' place.
We also have more favorites over there. Yes, we love our sheep!!

Baby Jane says, "Aw, Mom, you know that I am your most favoritest of all these sheep!" Yes, Jane, one of my most favorite of the sheep!