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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sheep Shearing Day 2010

~ A portion of Thistle Cove Farm's woolly flock ~
The snow is knee deep, again, this morning and even deeper in some places. It looks like just another snowy day on the farm but I'm going to try and get to the studio today which, lately, has been difficult due to drifts up against the studio door. The studio is mere steps from the back porch and behind the house but the snow tends to wildly drift on this farm, in this valley and my good intentions oft go astray. 
~ Roman nosed Romney ~
 Even so, Sheep Shearing Day 2010 is approaching and, earlier this week, I was able to meet up with Clinton, the shepherd who has been shearing my sheep for many years. Last autumn, Clinton met with an unfortunate accident when the girth on his saddle broke and he was, unceremoniously, dumped on the ground. Although I wonder if there's any ceremony whatsoever in being dumped; I think not but am leaving the idea open. He did not escape without injury and, in due time, had rotator cuff surgery - YEOUCH! - and will not be shearing for me this year. Heck, he may not be shearing for himself this year, time will tell.
~ Derreck Spangler
Derrick Spangler is a Certified Fiber Removal Specialist, for sheep, alpacas and llamas at Lord Willin Shearin, in Floyd County, VA and I've asked him if his schedule is open for shearing at Thistle Cove Farm. April is a bit late, at least most of the folks in our county have already sheared by April but I like shearing in April. We'll still get snow and cold but we'll also have some warmer weather and sunny days and, as my flock is somewhat, ancient, the warmer days assist greatly. If you've never seen a sheep sheared, visit his website where he has an under two minute video of him shearing a Tunis sheep.

Easter is the first weekend in April, this year, and there's a re-enactment the third weekend so I've, mostly, tried to arrange shearing on the second weekend, the 10th this year. Derrick is checking his calendar so, if you're a praying person, please say a quick one his schedule will allow. If it doesn't that's okay too, we'll just work together to find a date that's good for both...perhaps the last Saturday in April...?

I've run across Derrick's name and Lord Willin Shearin for a couple of years now and always people have good things to say. I mean, how could you not like a guy with such a great sense of humor!?
~ Ride 'em, Cowboy! ~

BTW, both photos were used with Derrick's permission and were borrowed from his website. If you're interested in discussing your shearing needs with Derrick, or you'd simply enjoy looking at his photos or website, please do visit. His site is easy to navigate and it's easy to contact him. Something tells me I'm going to enjoy his visit to Thistle Cove Farm....Lord willin. -smile-
~ Mary's felted soaps, hand knitted cloths ~
We open the farm, free, to visitors and it's a great family day. Lost Arts Guild members will demonstrate and sell crafts that would have been absolutely necessary to this farm of bygone days. Last year we had a basket maker, spinners, blacksmith, loom builder, dulcimer maker, quilter and gourd decorator. Additionally, a professional photographer set up a studio for photo folks wanting their photos taken with black spring lambs.
~ Mary, basket maker, feeding lamb ~
The Cove Community Association will sell hot food and drink with proceeds going toward educational programs concerning agriculture and the part it plays in all our daily lives. You're welcome to visit, please dress in layers with coat, hat and scarf as it's always been chilly in the morning and warms up as the day progresses. We welcome service dogs only as well as your cameras; it's a great photo opportunity. Parking is alongside the road except for media and those with handicapped designations on their vehicles, we save a small area just inside our gates for those folks. If you're able, come join us.
~ Leslie and Sandra ~
Leslie of Greenberry House, Alice, in aqua colored jacket, and Mary the basket maker but not shown are three woman who help skirt fleeces. For their troubles, they get the fleece of their choice and I feed them...well, I feed everyone who is still here...supper. I find myself still putting up photos of Sheep Shearing Day because I'm trying to recognize all that green and brown stuff on the ground. Most of what I've seen since 18 December is this:
~ latest snow storm, yesterday ~
Well, Dave has put on a beef roast for supper tonight and I'm going to make a blackberry cobbler from berries picked last summer. Our Verizon telephone has worked only sporadically since 11 January so, most days, we're well and truly stranded because we our land line, generally, doesn't work nor do we have cell phone service in our valley. Verizon keeps saying they've fixed the problem but in the midst of that phone call, the call is dropped and then, nothing, no dial tone, no static, nothing, nada, zip, nuttin honey. Call me silly but it would seem like that's a Big Head's Up, doncha think? But hey, when you're sitting in a nice, warm office somewhere in Jersey what do you care for a customer's problem you're never going to meet in a state you're never going to visit? Verizon, Verizon, Verizon...shame, Shame!

The Lost Arts Guild and Cove Community blogs need updating and the studio awaits so it's looking like another full day in our hood. Ahhhh, it's still a wonderful life!

Until next time,

Blessings ~ life ~ Dave ~ Clinton ~ Derrick ~ Leslie ~ Alice ~ Mary ~ Cove Community Association ~ and all the wonderful folks who make Sheep Shearing Day a day to remember for everyone ~
Thanks for visiting Thistle Cove Farm,


  1. I was looking at your sheep shearing day announcement at the top of your blog just yesterday thinking how neat it would be to join you! If there was any way possible, I would be there! Who knows? The way may open up! If not, I look forward to wonderful photos of all the festivities :)

    I hope things thaw out for you soon! All in favor of spring say "I!"


  2. sounds like a wonderful day - your shearing day. Wish we were able to travel - would be quite an experience for us both. Your potential shearer looks to be a hoot! Good he is also competent - nice combination in a skilled craftsperson. Stay warm - dear me our thin Texan blood has not enjoyed this winter but I allow you folks have it a good deal more intense.

  3. What an interesting shearer, I hope you get a lot of photos. You are snowbound? Sounds kind of cozy to me, I am still jealous of all the snow so much of the rest of the country is getting. A few more winter days are appealing to me because all the outside work and demands are beginning to call attention to themselves...weeds,moles, gardens, painting the house, pruning, cleaning out poultry pens,....and here i am just wanting to be snowbound and staying warm indoors and working on needlecraft projects.

  4. Looking forward to Sheep Shearing Day, as always, and can't wait until spring!

  5. I love your sheep pictures! Also, I'm grabbing my mom and driving up for the blackberry cobbler (only because she knows the way... the downside is that I'll have to share the cobbler with her). ;)

  6. Hi Sandra,

    Do you raise your sheep for their only or do you slaughter some of them for food.

    God bless you, Ron

  7. What a beautiful life and a beautiful blog! We raised just a few sheep for a few years. I loved our little bottle fed lambies and cried and cried when we sold our last pet! Thank you for sharing your lovely farm with us!
    Warmly, Debbie

  8. All the snowy sheepie pictures are beautiful, Sandra... but this sure has been one more winter.
    I would love to join you on your shearing day- how far do you live form Bristol/ Kingsport (TN) area?
    We are about 2 hours from the Tri-Cities.

  9. I am saying a prayer that your shearing can be scheduled on April 10th...I just realized that 2 days before my oldest daughter's 16th did I get a child that old? lol

    How I wish I could attend your "open house" at your farm. My husband and I enjoy this type of venue so much!

    How are your eyes doing...they must be better if you're trying to get to your studio.

  10. WOW!!! Looks like quite a day. Lots of work and fun to see some play added. Thanks for stopping by and visiting me on my Olympic post.

  11. Waaaaaa, I want to come! Maybe next year I will just plan on making the trip anyway.

    I agree with you, you have to love a guy with the sense of humor. His business name is fantastic. I'm looking forward to all of the pictures from the event.

    Stay warm(ish).

  12. The shearer looks like a fun fellow. I sooo wish I could go visit your Shear Day event.

  13. Thank you for taking the time to comment on my blog.
    Your comments are always welcome.

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend,
    God bless you and your family,

    Mr. and Mrs. Geezer

  14. those sheep are so cute! :D

  15. That is so interesting! Thanks for sharing!

  16. spring baby lambs.....aaahhhhh

    good to stop by and visit today..loved all of this, my friend

    kary and buddy

  17. blogger for dummies: well, it's o.k. i guess..i haven't really looked at it that much..and what i have..i still don't get it...

    i really struggle with this blog thing..can't seem to get the word lined up right under the pictures...just fiquered out gadgets :-{

    i got the book for 4 bucks off amazon...

    let me know if you try it...

    good to see you today....

    kary and buddy

  18. Hi Jen and I say...come on UP! You're in GA, right? So it would be UP!

    Hi Linda - know what you mean, there are good days and not so good days around here but I figure any time I wake up above ground it's just got to keep getting better!

    Hi Kathy - still snowbound and it's pouring snow now. My brother had 30 inches one day... and that was on top of the three feet already on the ground.

    Hi Leslie - hope springs eternal, eh? Nekkid sheep sound rather dreadful just now -smile-.

    Hi Eliza - just give me the word and I'll give you the directions AND make you a cobbler all your own!

    Hi Ron - Thistle Cove Farm is a no kill farm, everything earns its keep by providing fleece, rides or LUV -smile-.

    Hi Viva La Fashion - the sheep said, "thank ewe very much!"

    Hi Karla - thanks for visiting, come for shearing day if you're able.

    Hi Kary - no lambs this year, will have to borrow them -smile-. Thanks for the info on the book. As to lining up captions...all I do is center the photos and then center the captions...there are several "thingies" up at the topish leftish of the blog entry page and, depending upon choice, allows the words to be on the left side OR center OR right side.
    Clear as mud, eh?


Thank you for visiting Thistle Cove Farm; may God bless you, yours and the work of your hands and heart. My goal is to respond, here, to your comments although it may take a while.

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