2014 Shearing Day at Jenny Jump Farm – April 19

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It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything but we’re still kicking. It’s been a long cold and snowy winter. There are signs of spring and the snow is finally melting. Best of all we have confirmed April 19 for … Continue reading

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Meeting New Friends

I had the pleasure today to meet Alexandra Munmun Oliphant O’Neill and her horse Benji. We met through Facebook after learning we both adopted our horses from Lisa Post of Helping Hearts Equine Rescue.  She lives in Manhattan and takes the bus to Elite Equine Group in Ringwood, NJ where she keeps her horse Benji.

The photographs are of Mun and Benji along with two other riders. All the people I met at Elite Equine Group  were professional and friendly. The horses are happy and the grounds are well-kept. It was a perfect day.

I hope you enjoy the photographs as much as I had taking them.

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My sheep have been fleeced!

So many things have happened in the last month on the farm. First the sheep were shorn a few weeks ago without too much fanfare. I can get used to it. No sheep escaped and no one got hurt or cut, sheep nor human.  I had some great folks who come every year to help. Paul and Liz always help me sort the sheep and help our shearer, Tom move the sheep efficiently. My friends from the spinning guild did such a fabulous job skirted the fleeces they are show ready!

Next was the annual visit from my friends at Fiber Craft Studio. For the last three years Fiber Craft Studio have selected my fleeces for their teaching program. Their specialty is teaching people about fiber and how it connects us to our world. They hold an open house the first weekend in June. Be sure to check out their website for more information. I took some photos of their work which is exquisite.

Last we had our second sheep to shawl fund-raiser at the Leigh Valley Zoo. Once again we used Jacob fleeces from my sheep. It is always a fun time to spin with friends and watching the shawl grow from roving to a finished garment in a matter of hours. It’s like a tiny a miracle! I finally got to see some of the animals including the African Penguins and the river otter.

Better run since I am getting ready for the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival next weekend.   Stop and stay hello if you are going. I will be at the Jacob Sheep Conservancy Booth in Barn 4 all weekend.

May the fleece be with you!

 

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Naked Sheep, Oh My! Shearing Day March 30, 2013

It’s that time of year again when the sheep will be getting their annual hair cut. Shearing Day is set for March 30, 2013. Our favorite shearer Tom Horton will be back again to work his magic. As always friends and visitors are welcome but call ahead or email me to let me know if you want to attend. Space is limited.

We can always use help moving sheep and skirting fleeces. Of course, there will be fleeces for sale.

Thanks and hope to see you in March!

 

 

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Gratitude – What are you grateful for?

_MG_8140 _MG_4388 _MG_9428_MG_6241 IMG_4862 IMG_4912 IMG_5238It’s easy to forget the little things. Those simple acts or gestures of someone saying thank you, someone letting you in line or a simple smile. Much of my gratitude comes from nature. Sunrises, sunsets, rain, sun, snow, birds singing and a hungry menagerie of sheep and horses impatiently waiting for their morning feed. Each day I try to remember those little things and it makes my other problems disappear.

I hope you all find peace and happiness in the New Year.

 

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A world less hurried…

We just took another day trip to Lancaster County in hopes to get some pictures of the Amish harvesting their crops.  Just a few miles off the main highway and we were in another world. The Amish were very friendly and we tried not to be intrusive with our cameras. We ended up having dinner at Shady Maple Smorgasbord before driving home. We will be coming back to take more pictures soon.

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The Jersey Shore – Seaside Heights Boardwalk

This summer we did not travel much this past year but have started taking day trips around the area. Since Bob got a new camera, I was upgraded to a Canon EOS 1D Mark 4. Not to shabby but there is a lot to learn on how to operate it.

A few weeks ago we took a drive to Seaside Heights. Neither of us had been there since we were teenagers. It still looked the same to use. Nothing like the Jersey shore. It’s trashy but we love it.

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Dog Days of Summer and Spinning Tales

Do you know where the term the ” dog days of summer” originated? When I was younger I thought it was because it was too hot to move and would imagine a dog finding a cool spot to sleep. Turns out it’s not far from the truth. Dog days are considered the hottest days in the Northern hemisphere from late July through August. The term Dogs Days comes from the ancients siting Sirius, the dog star being in close proximity to the sun causing the hot weather.

Speaking of dogs, I spun some dog hair for my neighbor, Lena. Lena is in her late 80′s and is unable to get around but she is still quite active and is a very talented knitter. She made a beautiful dog sweater and asked me to spin her some yarn made of the dog’s hair. In fact, this dog unknowing donated his own hair.  Dog hair is not the easiest to spin but I find blending it with wool makes the job easier.The end result is well worth the trouble. Dog hair yarn can be so soft and very warm. Lucky dog!

 

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Too hot to handle

The lazy days of summer are upon us. The temperatures have been hovering over 90 degrees for several days and will stay there for the next week. I have a hard time sitting still normally but I am learning to slow down with this heat. I watch how my animals react to this heat. They seek shade under a tree or to cooler areas in the barn. Smarter than us humans.

So please take it easy when you are outside, drink plenty of water and slow down to enjoy the warmth on your face. Think like my sheep and take a nap in the shade.

Peace and stay cool, Joanie

 

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Jenny Jump Farm Tour Because We “Felt” Like It

This past weekend we had planned a farm tour and demonstration for a group of Cub Scouts from Ridgewood, NJ. I have learned knowing you audience is crucial in creating a fun experience. Besides meeting the animals I had to think of a project that what would interest the boys ages 5 – 13.  I thought making a felted pouch would be fun.  I did a practice run using wool and a bar of ivory soap with water. It took only 15 minutes to make a pouch.  All this could be done in under an hour.

As the day arrived, I set up four stations showing the care of sheep and the progression of making wool into a finished garment. Great, now I am ready for anything or at least I thought I was.

However, in place of the Cub Scouts we had their sisters and two younger bothers along with their mothers show up for the tour. The Cub Scouts had decided swimming was more fun than a visit to a sheep farm. So much for planning ahead. Despite the change, we all had a great time. The kids loved petting Josey, the sheep and feeding Arbee and Max carrots. Since there were only four kids they had a chance to spin and felt wool. Children catch on quickly and were spinning their own yarn within minutes. The adults also enjoyed making felted pouches and were a great help with the little boys.

Their finished pouches were amazing and each one was quite unique. They combined white, gray and black roving giving each an interesting texture and free form look. We all were so involved including my husband who took some great pictures. Many thanks to Ellen for taking some pictures of the pouches.

Well, I hope they come back again next year and I will be sure to take some pictures of the finished pieces.

Please click on picture for full view in the gallery.

 

 

 

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