Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Keep Sheep

This past weekend Dave and I went to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. It was so much fun! Friday morning we took a basic shepherding class. I feared we'd be the oldest people there but that wasn't the case. I'd guess the class included people from 20-60 years of age. The class was very interesting. We learned a lot and are very excited about one day having a small flock.

 I'm starting to learn the different sheep breeds. I'm pretty sure this black faced ewe is a Suffolk.

We went back Saturday when the place opened up to the public. Admission was free. We watched the sheep dogs work, visited vendors and hung out with the sheep. The later being our favorite activity. We talked to some of the shepherds and they were very helpful with information about getting started and telling us about their sheep's breed.

 This is the wool on a Border Leicester.

I had to get a quilt in here! This was the Kiparoo Farm booth. They had a luxurious cotton yarn I was tempted to purchase.  I haven't knitted in years and now I'm itching to. I'd also love to learn to spin yarn. It looks so relaxing.

Here is a lonely sheep. She was in the pen by herself and just bleating away. Her penmate was probably being sheared.

It was really crowded. Apparently, this is the biggest sheep and wool festival in the country. Dave said you could put most of the people in to three different groups - women buying yarn and roving, hippies and farmers. I'd have to agree.

Our teacher recommended this book even though it is an old one. I bought some roving for pincushions.
 Monday evening a package arrived from libbyQ. Love the bee fabric!

This books was inside. The funny thing is I had just checked this book out of the library earlier that day! libbyQ was spot on with this gift. Thanks, girl! I learned even more from the chapter on sheep. This is going to be a great reference guide.

And thank you all for putting up with my farm ramblings. I''m very close to finishing two quilts and promise I won't post again until they are done.


  1. Post whenever you want, about whatever you want!! I loved this. I had just been standing by my kitchen window taking photos of my BIL taking care of his sheep in the pasture next to our home. : )

  2. The sheep have the most darling little faces! They are adorable. Looks like you are closer to getting your farm? So pleased its working out for you! When I stop working at my present job (hate the "r" word), I want to get into beekeeping and chickens. My husband cringes...

  3. We raised sheep for FFA during our school years--very interesting animal. If you have a passion, it's a great time to learn more about it.:)

  4. you are so very welcome Maureen and i am so pleased that you are finding the book interesting and useful. that bee fabric just seemed perfect for wrapping it up in and i know that you will stitch it up into something wonderful~! i can't explain the amazing coincidence but i am very happy that it worked out in such a fun way.

    looking at the sheep i realize just how many varied kinds there are. they have such a wonderfully innocent look to them and i loved seeing the close up of the fur/wool.

    i would like to encourage you to post regardless of whether or not you have completed your quilts. i LOVE hearing the "farm ramblings" as well as the day to day this and that's that you share.


  5. That looks like a fun day! I love seeing your photos of all the sheep. I esp. like the two cuddled up together and then the two with their "coats" on. And what a sweet thing for Libby to do for you! Bloggers are some of the nicest people!

  6. Wonderful post! I love a good plan and will enjoy reading about your progress and learnings.
    I might be a bad shepard because I might select my flock on appearance ;-) Love the curly hair beauties.
    They are all just so sweet looking.

  7. What a delightful post!!! I would have just loved to have visited your Sheep/Wool day, it looked wonderful. Aren't those sheep amazing, such gentle faces, I love them!!!!
    Looks as though you are getting lots of good info about getting a small flock together, they can be such characters!!! I certainly don't mind all this sheep and wool talk, thanks so much for sharing this......

  8. Sounds like you are slowly heading in a different direction and it looks so inviting.
    Love all the sheep but the black faced Suffolk is my favourite.
    Good luck!

  9. Oh, lucky you getting to attend this festival! I think it and Rhinebeck are the two biggest flock and fiber festivals! I learned to spin a couple years ago and it is great fun. It is similar to hand quilting in that it is almost meditational. With both, I get into a rhythm and time passes without me knowing it. I can look up and discover to my surprise that 3-4 hours have passed while I quietly quilted or spun. That's when all goes well. Like hand quilting, sometimes it doesn't all go well, but you know that.

    Are you familiar with If you seriously want to learn to spin, there are many world-wide discussion groups on Ravelry that will help you choose a first wheel, what fiber is best to learn with, etc. I warn you - it is as addicting as quilting. My fleece and fiber stash is quickly rivaling my fabric stash for size. Search out this book if you don't have it already - the very best source for fiber info.