Fully Fibery Friday

We had an awesome, busy, blustery, sunshiny day at the farm today. The MArCH (McKinney Area Christian Homeschoolers) group came to visit the farm and learn about the animals and their products. I am so impressed with these kids. They were very attentive, respectful, self-controlled and articulate. Great job, kids (and parents)! Our own Grandma Tutu came over to help me with the group, answering questions and directing traffic. Thank you, Mary...

We learned about sheep and alpacas, and how to process their fiber. The kids were very interested in the animal care and even the fiber itself. They loved watching both the drop spindle and the wheel turn the fluffy fiber into smooth yarn.

They loved Judah, even though he was barking at them the whole time. I think they loved seeing the big white polar bear dog in the pasture with the sheep, and loved watching him do his job.

Of course, the chickens always steal the show. They came by to strut their stuff and show off their flashy feathers. Lots of the group members were interested in their fresh eggs.

Afterward, once the crowd thinned, young Ms. Anna asked if she could try the wheel. Normally, I don't let kids touch my wheels, but she had quite a gentle, confident spirit, so I let her have a go. And sure enough, with very little instruction, she was spinning yarn any adult would be proud of on her first spin. I hope to see her again in the Little Red Barn! (Yes, I'm counting Anna in my 100 Spinner Project!)

Now, hosting a group of that size for a full fledged tour and farm seminar is a big enough day, but Grandma Tutu stayed to help me move all the fleeces out of the LRB for tomorrow's spin-in. While we were relocating the bags, we weighed the fleeces of our own sheep, so I could keep a record of how much wool each sheep produces.

You're not going to believe this - our sheep sheared 29 pounds of gorgeous, skirted fiber. (Last year, our tiny flock of sheep sheared maybe 8 pounds.) In a couple of weeks we'll add our alpaca fleeces to the crop, and I also have the supplemental wool from the handful of local shepherds we support. So, shareholders, I think we're looking at a banner year in 2010!

As if the day hadn't already been bursting with fiber goodness, this evening, Cynthia came over for her second spinning lesson. She was very happy to be off of the drop spindle and working on a wheel. What a joy to watch her take to the wheel like a duck to water. She has lots of nice fiber to work with, so her next few days will be busy making lovely yarn. Way to go, Cynthia!

Tomorrow we're expecting rain and much colder temperatures, but I'm hoping some stalwarts will be with us in the LRB for a great spinning wheel clinic with Joanne. See you in the morning!


  1. Anonymous12:27 PM

    Looks as though you had a great day yesterday! How great to be able to show a group of kids how everthing works on your farm! AND how wonderful that thet little girl wanted to spin! Who knows where that talent may take her!


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