Tuesday, January 31, 2012

30% Off Books

Starting Feb 1st in my Artfire shop you will get 30% OFF ALL BOOKS and it will last for two weeks till Feb 14th... Why does that date seem important? Oh Yeah, trying to get a present that wont add to your hips, have to be returned because no one our age should wear that even with the lights off or worse case - he forgot again!!!!

I will be adding more books but for now for all you Bead Lovers and Art Doll makers you have hit the mother load. Have fun and remember books like to travel with a buddy. As always I will refund you any overage of postage that is collected - I never keep what is not mine...


Monday, January 30, 2012

Heart Song

I needed to lift my heart today and hear the song that was waiting to get out... This is what came out...

This is a 3 ounce offering in my Etsy shop - all the best that I have raised, dyed and carded to bring out your creative song hiding inside you.

What song are you hearing??

New Baby Llama Naming Contest

As promised here is the Starting Day of the New Baby Llama Contest... The Contest will end February 6th at Noon

This sweet little girl was born Monday January 23rd at 9:18 am. We may have had a very bumpy start but now she is thriving and doing GREAT!!!

The rule for this contest has changed a bit - you MUST BE A FOLLOWER of this blog to play!! We had a few issues with FB folks not being a fan but still entering and so I want your entry to count so please make sure you are a blog follower... I do check!! I know - What a Pain, but I wish to be fair to those who honor the rules. There is only one so I am sure it is not too much...

You can enter as many times as you wish and each name will give you a separate entry so that means more chances to win the prizes and bragging rights.

I hope you will join me in the celebration of this new life and please help out in finding that perfect name for such a deserving girl. Thanks in advance.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Newest Baby Llama

I finally found the time to sneak up on the new baby Llama Girl born this Monday January 23rd and get you some pictures of this adorable little one. She was enjoying sitting on the hill soaking up the sun and was sound asleep... Look at those white eyelashes - I just love, love, love them...

Dottie (Other baby Llama) was getting upset that she was not the center of everything - that's the big sis syndrome... Dottie even came up and bumped me several times as if to say "Look At Me Mom - not that little one"

So there you have it we are going to have to start the naming contest on the newest baby shortly. So get ready and I will post it in a bit.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Radiant Rafael

This AMAZING Sweet One is "Rafael" son of Rebecca and twin to Rasputin. He makes the most drop dead lovely lockets and is a quite gentlemen. After clipping him this Spring I took about half of his fleece and let the dye pots do their magic. Below is the results. I have placed them up for sale on my Etsy shop this weekend. They are opened a bit but still able to be made into many types of Art Yarns or ready for blending with whatever strikes your fancy. They would also work well into Felting projects, Altered Art projects or used as Embellishments. Heck, I would love them just in a bowl to squeeze but that is me...

Would love to hear your thoughts on this sweet boy and the dyed fiber - Always eager to hear how to improve.

New Handspun Yarns

I have been spinning up a storm - hoping to get ahead of all those creative things running around in my head. I finished up a total of 356 yards of this tasty yarn which breaks out into 5 separate skeins of varied yardages. This yarn I am calling "Caramel Cranberry Sundae" it is made of Superwash Merino Wool, Nylon and Gold Angelina - perfect for any type of project you have in mind. Yes, this can even be washed in the machine on delicate and dried flat.

Hope I have tempted you with some great Hand Spun Yarn... Last offering went quickly so don't delay, this is truly a tasty treat...

Friday, January 27, 2012

End Result of Spinning Night

SOLD - Many thanks to Kate

Remember the yarn I spun on the 19th which appeared on my wheel??? Here is the finished yarn - What do you think of it?? Got a bit side tracked with all the drama with the newest Llama babies birth and nursing issues. I forgot to post this but I am catching up..managed to spin enough to make 115 yards in a two ply out of the four ounces I had - Lovely!

I am selling it on Etsy for a sum of $28.75 - not bad I think for this attractive Mountain Meadows Merino and Silk Yarn...

So spread the word. I sure would like to send it off to a new home....

Thursday, January 26, 2012

And The Winner Is

Drum Roll Please
As I reach into the big bowl containing 158 entries and pulled out a slip of paper with the following participants name:

Pam's Fiber from Dream Come True Farm

and the name that comes with that drawing is "Polka Dot"

Streamers flowing and ear piercing yells with rounds of applause fill the farm shop..

I want to thank everyone for your wonderful and creative entries. Also, for taking the time to work those gray cells and also sit in front of the computer to add your suggestions to my sights. I am so thrilled that so many wanted to aid in the naming of the sweet little girl who now races around the pasture full of life and love.

If Pam's Fiber would contact me at ggerberlff@aol.com to give me her address so I can send out your winnings I sure would appreciate it.

Again, thank you all for participating.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

New Baby Update

We made it through the night. Nursing is taking place but with Mother not being too happy. She received several more round of Herbs for her milk, Baby did get another 2 ounces of formula at 2 am and I got a whole three hours of sleep!!! WOW three whole hours.......

Now I am not complaining - just saying. I would go without sleep for days if I can bring someone through a problem. I know I am a bit rummy because I started to make breakfast and got side tracked putting away the holiday decorations and forgot I had started my tiny cast iron skillet with butter for the eggs and came back up from the basement to a house full of smoke. Just as I stepped foot in the kitchen to open the back door the smoke alarm went off - GREAT Way to Wake Up..... At least I know it works...

Guess there will be no brain surgery for me today. No sharp objects, pointy things or complicated calculations for this gal..

So with a list a mile long today to get done I will be setting the timer and checking in the barn to make sure we are starting to get on better footing with the little one. She is so loving and kind. Hopefully the goat girls will get some rest today. They kept watch over the little one with all the concern us mothers do.

Please keep the good thoughts and prayers coming - I know it is helping.. Many Thanks.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Baby Arrived - Needs Prayers

This morning at 9:18 am we had the birth of the newest Baby Llama, a little girl. So sweet and was full of life and energy. She worked hard thru the day trying to figure out how to get the nursing thing down but hour after hour no luck. Mother was trying to be patient but with each hour Mother was talking more and moving more.

Llama's can last longer then a goat without food but I was beginning to get concerned. By 4 I made a triangle pen and put mother and baby inside. I moved in the sides so I could guide baby under and work this problem slowly to a sound nursing session. Mother crossed her legs and was not having it. Baby got upset and so I turned them out and watched.

It was now 7 pm and Grace had reached her end. Into the house I went and got the formula. Side story - when I was at the feed store last it is such a habit to purchase formula at Thanksgiving just in case that I had it in the truck and down the road before I remembered I did not breed the goats. I thought, Turn Around Grace You Have NO BABIES Coming and then I said No let's just get home I am pooped and just want to be home. Well, now we know why!!

I made the formula and dug through the box of nipples and bottles for the llama nipple. It has been about 10 years since we have needed one of those. The problem is they do not fit normal baby bottles like I use for sheep and goats. What to use?? What to use?? I walked around raking my brain and looking in every cupboard and fridge. It Hit Me - I had small glass Tonic Water Bottles. Yep, tonight I sure could use a Gin and Tonic but not till we are well out of the woods...

I made the bottle and off I went. I sat there in the barn waiting to see if while I was gone any progress was made - NOPE!! So with towel and bottle in hand I got her to take it and sip, sip, sip she went and that was music to my ears. I did not let her eat much, just enough to warm her up and to make sure she could nurse. I took the nipple away and she looked all over for her Mother. She ran to her and tried and tired again but Mother was not letting her. I gave Mother a handful of Raspberry Leaves along with Marshmallow Root which should help a bit. Before I left Baby took another good hit on the bottle and then sat with her mother under the heat lamp.

So if you could and it is in your nature PLEASE send out some prayers for these two - we will do our best but help is always appreciated. I guess this gal will not be going to bed tonight - so much for a stress free time at the Funny Farm. Glad I am a creature of habit - I have plenty of formula if needed...

Waiting Room / Carding Room

This weekend I was busy at the carding machines awaiting the next Llama Baby Birth. In and Out, In and Out over and over again but the carding machines do not mind this continual interruption. I posted several new batts up in my Etsy and a few have already found new homes - one is even going to New South Wales. I am a bit envious of it but I know it is going to very talented hands...

Would love to know what you think of this offering?? Hard to keep my fingers out of it..

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Naming Contest Starts Today!

It is time to name this sweet girl - here is the information so far

Born on January Friday the 13th at 4:18 pm. She is a Appy color girl just like her mother which means she has a creamy white base color with cinnamon, chocolate brown and espresso brown spots. She is curious, friendly and as with most of my fur babies smarter then most.

This is how the contest will go - It starts today Thursday January 19th at noon MST and will end on Thursday January 26th at noon MST.. For those who caught it - Yep, A Week!!!

You can enter as many times as you would like but you must be a follower of this blog or a fan of my Face Book page Larkspur Funny Farm. There will be prizes going to the winner which will be Llama related...

I love how creative my followers have been in the past on assisting me in the naming process but please keep in mind that this sweet one will have to live with the name picked so PLEASE no four letter words, negative or disparaging words - I will not include them in the drawing basket.

I am so excited to see what wonderful names you come up with and trust me you will be getting some great goodies if you are the lucky winner. So put on those thinking caps, pull out the fair tale books, baby name books or what ever else you will use... Have fun, enter often (increases your chance of winning) and PLEASE tell your friends, family and even strangers - the more the merrier.

Good Luck and Look at the Sweet Face - Who could resist??

Lunch Time

Now that the winds and bitter cold has released the farm at least for the afternoon I have let the llama girls and baby out to get their legs moving and sunshine of their faces. I love when a new baby gets their first chance to run full out and kick up their heels. The little girl was a bit scared of the snow, the dogs, the billies and telephone poll but I walked around the pasture with her to show her we all would watch out for her.

She nursed every time something scared her - typical baby behavior. Also this morning one of her ears was a bit floppy. I checked it - No Frost Bite! I checked also for teeth marks - None! So I will watch it closely - no need to tape it before I know there is an issue - many times they right themselves with out the need of human interference.

So, what's for lunch at your house??

Spinning is my Bliss

I spent the day in the fiber prep room hoping to get centered while
the winds outside made it impossible to work outside and so I needed to get lost in my heart and hands with what bring me purpose and joy. I created many batts during the day and they are up on my Etsy shop looking for talented folks to take home but by evening I needed to spin. My soul just calls out to this and I can not ignore it. I had planned on going to bed early because I really needed the rest but the roving was just screaming for me to sit and spin.

I am always amazed how the world slips away the moment my foot starts the motion of up and down and my hands start drafting the eye candy fiber. My life has purpose, has joy and the worries of that around me melts aways into bliss. I let the fiber dictate what it wishes to be and unlike most of my life where I find myself holdin on with "White Knuckles" and "Clinched Jaw" through out the day. I am always asking myself to "Be here in the moment Grace" - "Release and Allow Grace" and many more statements such as those trying to find the Peace, Love and Joy that I do when I am touching fiber.

So for those hours I spent spinning this gal lived in PURE BLISS and I hope you had that in your day. Would love to know what that is for you??

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Lady in Waiting - Update

As the sun rose this morning I had hoped the change in air pressure Monday would have trigger the birthing of the other cria (baby) sitting inside of it's Mother... No Such Luck!!!

Llama's have a great way of delivering during the day which is instinctual. Since they understand that predators come at night Mother Nature has given them this ability to almost stop or slow down their contractions when predators might be around. During the day they can see all around while engaged in the hard task of delivering new life and the rest of the herd will keep watch while they deliver. I have loved that about these amazing creatures but here is the down side - most times if they do deliver in the night it is because they are having troubles and so it does not mean you stop checking on them during the night because that is when they will need me. Unlike my Goat Girls who love having me with them all the time during their labor and delivering - my llama girls are much more private. Who would blame them? I sure did not want an audience while delivering my sons - I did not even want the doctor to be looking down there - we wont even go into my issues we are talking Llama's..

Since today is going to be bone biting cold and tomorrow is to be in the 50's - Which day would you bet this baby might come??? Leave your bet and we will see who is right..

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Momma in Waiting

After the events of Friday I took a good look at the other female llama and Yep we have another Mommy to Be... No time to waste she is rolling and sitting funny so the time is coming closer. That means Grace needs to get her flat tired butt in gear...

So after sitting with a cup of coffee and a piece of paper I have the game plan mapped out. Trust me if you don't think these things through you will be running around chasing animals through the snow with all getting tired and never where we want to end up.

First things first. I moved Olivia out of her side of the goat girls barn. She was not happy. Then I turned the bottle kids out and cleaned that side of the barn. Moved in the bigger feed containers and waters.

Next, was to get this gal up to the big barn and pasture. Like most animals or humans change is not something they do without some struggle or a very clear reason - WOW life lesson for Grace again. Anyway, what I did was walk the path to the new pasture without ever giving her eye contact. I went slow and with a kind heart. I walked through the two different gates and up to the top hill. I sat down and breathed slowly. I sat for about 10 minutes, got up and walked to the house without ever looking at her. I went into the house and pour a cup of coffee... Within about three minutes she walked the same path, through the gates and up to the hill and sat down. I than came out of the house and closed the gates. Told her "Thank you" and went back to work.

Now to move the new baby and Mother. I went to the small barn and greeted them both with no words but a bent head and slow breathing. When I saw they where calm I slowly picked up the baby and opened the barn door. We walked slowly across the farm as Mother would circle me talking all the while to her baby. If either one got too nervous I stopped breathed loudly and slowly until they settled down. Upon reaching the barn I sat the baby down and closed the gate behind us. I sat on a stool and waited untill Mother checked over every inch of the little one and stopped making her nervous noises. Baby came up to me and I gently scratched her all over... She loves it and soon she sat beside me. I waited a bit longer to give them the time they needed and so they understood I was not going to do anything else to them.

Once I left the barn it was full steam ahead. Big panels are needing to be dug out of snow banks and carried across the farm to the barn. Then replacing the smaller sheep panels with the larger llama panels to keep everyone in the right places. I tell you walking through the snow with panels becomes a big work out but the weather was warmer then I thought so I was at least not cold. I cleaned out the empty section in the smaller barn and made new digs for the bottle kids. I also constructed a run for them so they could go outside and still be safe. Smaller feeders and waters brought in and filled - now it was time to go get the bottle kids. They are like ducks - they see me and follow - great for me because I was not looking forward to carrying everyone across the farm..

It is now time for evening chores - a full days work and everyone in their new spots. I will have another night of checks but at least I know I have them in a place where I can care of them with no worry of the elements. Now it is a waiting game - the baby greets me each time I come to check which makes the cold long walk well worth it.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

New Baby Llama

The pictures that follow I took at midnight Friday of the newest member of Larkspur Funny Farm.. Mother was not happy that I kept checking on them every two hours but she will forgive me if there is a need or emergency - I hope.. This in and out also kept the one and two year old billies goats sleeping in the other side of the barn awake but again checking is more important just in case...

As you can tell by the last picture Mom was happy to see me go and baby was done with the pictures taking. She has nursed which is fantastic. Here is a trick I use here with Camelid Crias (Llama Babies) so I know if the bowels are moving - I use a large knee band aid and stick it to the babies bottom. Really it is attached to the hair on either side of their privates. Then if I miss the event I can check the band aid when I do my checks and see what is there or not there. It is a great way to be well ahead of any eating or eliminating issues. Unlike sheep and goats who require butt licking from the Mother to get them nursing Llamas and Alpacas do not have this Mothering Pattern. I had only two Llama Mothers who would pulled it off so their babies I would not leave until I had seen it with my own two tired eyes.

So back to the house I go, set the alarm clock, lay on the couch in my barn clothes and back out in two!!!

Was it worth the wait to see her??

Something STRANGE is in the Air - Read On

As the sun was getting lower in the sky and I still was sitting at the computer trying to update my Etsy shop I felt a strange feeling come over me. I know most might think I am nuts and that is perfectly fine with me but here is what was happened and then you judge.

Yes, I know it is Friday the 13th which I never put any worry into. I love the very B rated movies where Jason seems to have no other purpose then to hack apart teenage sinners and never dies - we wont go into what that means in today's mind set. I had been hoping that the cramping in my stomach was not another bout of this bug I have been fighting and trust me those lady parts where long ago taken (I know too much information but it is needed to explain the unfolding of events) and not missed.

I tried to keep my mind focused and ignore the growing pain. It reminds me of the start of labor. Now remember I decided to not breed the goat girls and give this overly tired and stressed midwife a break. So again I tried to block it from my thoughts. After about a half hour of this I thought stand up and walk around a bit so I went to my office window and looked out. There on the driveway and front grass area was about 40 some or more deer wondering around very strange like. WHAT THE HECK!!! Yes, I used other words but I am not here to shock you.

I went to go get my camera and try to take pictures of this. Yep, no one would stand still. They where milling about the isolate pens and close to the front drive. I decided to go outside and see if I could get a better shot of the massive number of them. As I am trying to creep closer to them my silly Sophia started barking and they took off bounding into the forest. Just then I noticed Llama boy - he was humming and not his usual tune. I was not focused on that but rather the increasingly painful cramps. Just as I was about to turn around and go into the house I saw one of the llama girls sitting in the corner of the isolate pen kind of funny. I stopped and tried to focus my eyes in her direction but the sun was now low enough to blind me. I stood there with my Long John's and turtle neck sweater on starting to get very cold and shaking but I thought just quickly walk over and check things out.

As I tried not to slip on the ice that now is the majority of what is left from the big snow storm. I made my way over and saw "TWO FEET STICKING OUT HER BUTT". OH MY GOSH.....

I walked quicker to her but not in the way to convey panic. I was breathing loudly so she would know I was not in Panic and so she could continue with what was already happening. I opened the big metal gates with no gloves - crap that is cold. I walked slower but with a large stride so I could get there and assess the situation. I made Llama Boy and the other Llama Girl get out of the area and started counting her contractions. It would not be long and the bitter cold wind was kicking up. I quickly went back to the house, put on some clothes, got towels, vet kit and was say prayers the whole way there and back.

Now I know why I was in such distress. The baby delivered quick and easy. I hated to do this but it was so cold outside and there was no shelter out there we had to move everyone. I took the towel wrapped it around the body of the baby and picked up this long legged wet and slippery baby. I slowly started walking hoping that Mommy would not attack me or get disconnected from the bond with baby. Slowly we walked as she hummed and I made sure not to make eye contact with her or baby. We finally reached the small barn and I got her to cross the doorway. I placed the baby down and ran to get straw, buckets, feed and cover up the window to stop the draft. I went to work like my butt was on fire and within a half hour all was settled in and I was sitting in the corner awaiting the first nursing.

After it was clear that Mommy was more then a bit nervous of me being in such close quarters with her little one I made the decision to go in the house and give it a bit of time. I came in made me dinner, sat in mediation to calm myself down and release any fear I might be holding for this little one. I gave them about an hour or so and went outside. Luckily I could look through the other windows and watch without coming in and worrying Mom again. Yep we have nursing!!!

So my connection to birthing Mothers at this farm is not lost and with this seasoned Mother I will be on 2 hour watches to make sure all goes well... Some Friday the 13th here at the Farm. Never a Dull Moment!!!

Yes, we will have a naming contest coming up but let's not get ahead of ourselves...

Tummy Tickling

I made some Banana Bread for my guests who came to the farm and I must say that it turned out YUMMY!! At least to my taste buds. Not sure what I did differently but it was very moist, evenly baked and tender. Since I never even got around to making Holiday Cookies I had nothing to offer (bred into me from a young age and my mother calls me compulsive - where do you think I learned this?) so in my usual fashion Grace was baking at 11:00 at night instead of sleeping...

I could not control myself. After my guests had left the farm I heated some of my Buffalo Chile and cut me two slices of the bread that Debbie brought and sat down to answer emails and get to the business that is my daily routine. The bread was so yummy and complimented the Chile perfectly. I think I will have to have a couple more with my Broccoli Soup for dinner tonight. Oh what the heck - I think I need another serving of Chile and one more slice of bread...

Friday 13th Visitation

What a lucky day here at the Farm - I had a visitation from two Colorado Mary Jane Farm Girls - Debbie and Marilyn. These wonderful gals drove a long distance to stop in and chat a while. When they reached the house I was presented with a lovingly prepared basket from Debbie.

There was hand crocheted dish clothes and a nice assortment of teas

A homemade Artisan White Bread wrapped in a floral dish towel

There are some wonderful Cranberry Orange Muffins tucked in there too.

As you noticed the towel has already found it's spot in the kitchen.

Now I am not all about the gifts but it was incredible that she took the time to create such a loving basket of goodies just for me - MANY THANKS!

We spent some time chatting, wondering around the shop and seeing what I do and Debbie received a gift certificate from another Mary Jane Farm Girl for Christmas which I am thrilled to say she found two books on spinning and knitting Dog hair along with four skeins of hand spun Llama/Wool Yarn for a pair of mittens that she will be knitting for herself. Then I had a bit of time to show her some of my tricks in spinning on a drop spindle. With time, practice and breathing I have faith that she will master the kit she purchased some six years ago.

As our time came to an end I invited them back whenever time, weather and health permits. I thank you again for sharing your time and friendship with me - Blessings and Be Well

Have a wonderful weekend ladies

Monday, January 9, 2012

Request for Wooden Buttons

The two toggles on either side are a great china button made to look like wood these are vintage and I two of each color and they go for $3.00 each.
The button in the middle is a wood button - also Vintage measuring 1 7/8 inch for $4.00 each and I have two.

Two Vintage Hand Carved Buttons (Left is 1 1/4 inch for $5.00 each and I have two left) (Right is 1 1/8 inch for $7.00 each and I have two left) - These are SOLD - Many Thanks Ruth

Left is reclaimed wood branchs which is 1 1/2 inch for $5.00 each and I have 4 left - Right is also a reclaimed wood branchs which is 1 2/8 inch with natural edges - smooth but has shape to them for $4.00 each and I have 4 left.

Left is a square 1 1/2 inch nut tree button which is $6.50 each and I have 4 left
Right is an amazing button which is a half moon longest width is 2 3/8 inchs by 1 2/8 wide for $5.60 each and Yes I have 4 of those

Left is irregular triangle which averages 3 inch at the longest point and around 2 inchs at it widest these go for $7.00 each and I have three

Right is a amazing round button which is 2 1/8 inch and goes for $7.00 each and I have four.

Last are my to most favorites.. Right is an net shape around 2 1/2 inch at the longest point and 1 3/4 inch at it widest. I have three left and they sell for $8.00 each.

The big round one on the right is 2 3/4 inch and sells for $10.00 each and I have three left.

If any of these would work or need more info on just leave a comment and I will make arrangements to gladly sell you some.