~ Derrick Spangler, Sheep Wrangler Extraordinaire ~Mercy! Sheep Shearing Day at Thistle Cove Farm is over for another year. Derrick did himself proud and my sheep are now nekkid. Daniel and Tom helped with shearing, parking and any other chore thrown at them and did it all with grace and good humor. God blessed us with some of the Most Perfectly Beautiful weather we've ever had - warm, sunny, slight breeze and folks who truly appreciated the day in its entirety. I never heard a cross word but did hear some wonderful music and song as played by Charlie and his children, David and Emily.
~ Charlie, David and Emily playing heart rendering gospel and bluegrass ~
~ hand crafted dulcimers by Charlie Butcher ~Charlie makes hand crafted traditional mountain dulcimers as well as mandolins and fiddles. The abalone shell shows what he uses for fret decoration and he has slabs of wood showing how he begins with the raw product. People are fascinated when they understand Charlie uses wood from his Daddy's farm and ends up with such a beautiful and sweet sounding instrument.
Leslie, Mary and Alice skirted again this year and Pat came and helped as well. Skirting isn't a difficult job and there are some...Leslie, Mary, Alice and myself...who don't think it a dirty job but we enjoy a good, clean smelling fleece. The fleeces weren't as clean as I'd like this year; some had a fair amount of VM, or vegetable matter, in them but it was a harsh winter and I've fed hay since November but the VM washes out quite nicely so there's no real harm done.
~ Leslie, Alice and Cassie skirting a Shetland fleece ~
~ Mary Martin's baskets ~Mary Martin makes beautiful, ole timey baskets and her Daddy was a basket maker so she continues the family tradition. She even has three baskets her Daddy made for her and, rightfully, prizes them greatly.
~ Mary showing how she makes a basket ~So many folks on this day, are carrying on family traditions. Leslie has one of her grandmother's spinning wheels, Gaynell comes from a family of quilters, Charlie has many musicians in his family and Bud has horse thieves in his family.
~ Gaynell's beautiful hand crafted quilts ~
Gotcha! You weren't really paying close attention, now were you? -smile-. Bud has family who have always had horses and he's continued the tradition with his own horses plus he's a farrier and blacksmith.
~ Bud Thompson, Story Teller Extraordinaire, Blacksmith Farrier ~
~ Leslie's lovely offerings from her shop, Greenberry House ~
~ home made food! ~
Has the food been mentioned? No, well...home made...for those who eat junk or fast food, home made food means food that was, lovingly, prepared at home by women who know how to cook. Judy made hot apple, peach and cherry pies, sausage biscuits, muffins of several varieties and other good things.
~ Cove Community food table ~Members of the Cove Community Association prepared ham biscuits and other delights to sell with the proceeds going toward educational programs. Their sign reads "250 years of agriculture" and the rest of the story is, all of those 250 years have included several of the same families. Our little valley has a rich agricultural history and we're, rightfully, proud of our history.
~ me, earlier in the week ~Dave and I are grateful to each and every one who came and made this such a perfect day. It takes such an enormous amount of work to get the farm ready for Sheep Shearing Day but days like today make it all worthwhile. I met some wonderful folks - Blue Moon Mama and Nora come immediately to mind ~ as well as others from the Richmond, VA area, WV, NY, NC and others and loved, loved, loved having you all visit. I wanted to throw up some photos and blog update, today, on Sheep Shearing Day. Tomorrow is Sabbath Keeping and needed to get everything lined up in place. I'm exhausted, totally, but wanted you who came today to know words simply cannot express the sheer joy you brought into my life with the gift of your presence. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Thank you and God's richest blessings on you, yours and the work of your hands and hearts!
Blessings ~ another beautifully perfect day at Thistle Cove Farm ~ nekkid sheep ~ people who enjoyed the day ~ family ~ friends ~ happy dogs who are totally crashed out, snores loud and deep ~
Thanks for visiting Thistle Cove Farm,