Thursday, September 25, 2008

Autumn happenings.........

Common Ground Country Fair logo for 2008

Shane and I had a great time at the fair but it's wonderful to be home!!!! I'm still dealing with "jet lag" for lack of a better term but finally have enough energy to post. We returned late sunday evening from a four day stay at the Common Ground Country Fair in Unity, Maine. If you ever have the chance to attend, you will be happy that you did. It definitely is an educational adventure in sustainable living. I've attended for many, many years and learn so much every time I'm there.

We have a booth in the Maine Fiber Farms tent. All of the vendors in this tent have some kind of fiber animals and everything in their booth are items created from their farms. It's a wonderful assortment of folks and it's always fun to connect with friends you only see once or twice a year.
I hurried like a mad woman to get all the yarn died, the soap felted, sheepskins, and gourds ready and everything else packed for three weeks before we left. The weather was grand. Cool and sunny. Perfect weather for selling wool and warm weather items. The biggest turnout ever - almost 60,000 people in three days! I came home with empty supply boxes. Yippeeeeeee. I do have a small amount of yarn that I will sell on-line or at the farmer's market. I will use some for christmas gifts as well. A successful weekend all around for everyone.

Autumn has definitely arrived in the Northeast and the harvest is slowly coming to an end. We have had several hard frost and the growing season is pretty much over. The winter squash has been picked and is now stored in wooden boxes in our crawl space basement. The temp is perfect and we should eat fresh squash for a long time to come. Yesterday Tom and I harvested our kennebec potatoes and our sweet potatoes. The sweet potatoes did very well and I will definitely plant more next year. Next week we hope to have time to pick apples and can applesauce. The last on the list is to pick and can our shell beans. It will be nice to put the gardens to rest for the winter season.

Winter squash ready for storage

We are starting our winter preparations. Sheep and goats need to be sheared and three cord of wood needs to be stacked in the wood shed. We are raking acorns for the pigs and they are plentiful this year. I'm hoping that's not a sign of the type of winter we are going to have. We need to clean out all of the gardens and all the leftovers go to the pigs as well.

My DH is home on vacation this coming week and we are installing a new woodstove in our livingroom. Should be a fun project :)

Fall colors

This isn't a great photo but our trees are changing colors quickly and the foliage is beautiful. We lost our sun today as a tropical storm is making it's way up the coast and is supposed to dump 4 inches of rain on us by saturday evening. We sure didn't need that! I hope to have better foliage photos to share in the days to come.


Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

What a lovely tableful of yarn! And your winter squash has my mouth watering....

Kara said...

Great post, I love fall. The yarn is beautiful, what type of dye do your prefer? I am thinking of dyeing some.

kristi said...

I always enjoy your posts & the beautiful pictures ....the yarn & squash are just great! How are those cows:)

threecollie said...

So pleased to see you back. We were concerned about you.
Lovely photos!

Paintsmh said...

She's back she's back...

We've missed you!

Glad the fair went so well!

Pamela said...

Lucious, lucious colors on the yarn!

I have a friend who is an avid knitter, but I don't know if she has ever used handspun yarn before. Is there a knitting difference in using handspun over bought?

(Your remark about Christmas made me think.)

Throwback at Trapper Creek said...

Love the yarn colors, and the leaves turning. I hope you can get your outside fall chores done before the rain arrives.

Glad you're back - put me on the list of worry warts!

Nancy K. said...

Congratulations on your successful sales at the Fair! I need to start trying to market some of my "secondary" products! It could help pay for HAY....

I was surprised by your comment about shearing the sheep and goats! I know that Angoras have to be sheared twice a year but do you always shear your sheep in the fall? What is the rationale behind that???

Deb said...

Thank you :) the winter squash did so well this year....I'm grateful for that.

Thank you. My main dye is Cushing dyes but I also use pro-chem, Jacquard and Gaywool. We also do some natural plant dying. It's fun and addicting :)

Thanks :) The cows are all doing great. They really enjoy the cooler weather as much as I do.

Thank you for the warm's nice to be back. The one thing I really missed at the fair was my laptop. Missed reading what my blog friends were up to.

Thank you - I missed you all as well! How are all those calves doing?

The biggest difference I find between handspun and commercial is the texture and diversity of the yarns. Handspun isn't perfect where commercial yarns are the same throughout the entire skein. My yarns are machine spun on a small mini mill. They look like handpsun and commercial all in one. They are also processed without chemicals which is very important to me.

Thank you :) I'm slowly plugging away at the outside chores. 2.5" of rain yesterday and another 3 or so tonight. I'm not minding a little inside time. Thanks for being a worry wart.

I raise finn sheep as well as shetlands and the finn have to be sheared twice per year as well as my pygora goats.

Thanks for all your comments - it's great to hear from you all!