a strong, coarse fabric with a linen or cotton warp and a woolen weft
The house is covered with the contents of my car, which was the contents of the fiber festival I recently participated in, which is basically the entire harvest of our farm’s fiber. The house is covered with fiber.
In the old days, I would be doing all of these things by myself and in the real old days, my kids would have been here to pitch in for chores and such. These are new days. I say “Yes!” to my dear friends that volunteer or say, “Call me!” The gals that know how to pick up a muck rake and clean out a stall, sweep an aisle, grab a goat by the horns and help me trim their hooves. The gals that know how to get the last chicken in with me, shut the door and then fill up the turkeys’ dishes.
Martha is helping me with inventory, she even cleaned my desktop. She makes cider-donut runs. She drops mail off and opens my fridge and checks to see what I’m out of. She hauls water buckets to the donkeys and sheep, unloads 50-lb bags of grain into the barn, organizes and loads my vehicle, cheers my children, more and more and more. I cannot even begin to list the assists she’s volunteered.
Miranda has been my right arm in the stall with the gimpy gals. She even came by to help wrap one of the girls’ hooves last week when I was knee deep in a dyeing-workshop. She drives folks to and from the airport. She fills hay racks.
Maggie comes when she can after school and cross-country practice. She helps me with the dirty work – not afraid to help me set up a coral to catch up those escaping wethers. Not afraid to help me make tough farming decisions to insure the future health of the flock. Steady and reasoning, thoughtful and kind. She is 13 going on 31.
Mom is amazing. She’s celebrating 79 tomorrow yet she is unwavering. Today she showed up to help me put 20 pies in the freezer before I zipped out of town to get 7 sheep shorn and two sheep vaccinated, my old Shetlands that live on a farm up north. Mom arrives with yarn that she untangled for me the last time she left. She goes to my laundry room and finds things to fold. She shows up to help load my van for the festival that I have to be on the road for in an hour. She pops in the car and drives the hour to my farm to help and we have so many laughs.
Today was my brother’s birthday. My brother that passed away 4 years ago. Mom and I were going to have a bowl of homemade butternut squash soup and think on him together. We never had a minute to spare to sit and celebrate Larry. I ate my soup in a cup in the car on the way to shear the sheep. Mom had hers after she washed all of my dishes and before she headed to pick up my niece. But we talked about him while we worked together. We talked about how he would’ve been running and gunning in the same way that I am. My mom and I and Larry share the same bucket-loads of energy, the same excitement and thrill for projects and for farming and gardening and making. I can still feel that positive charge when I think of him, I still see his blurred image of to and fro. Not sitting for long.
Wing & A Prayer Farm is linsey-woolsey, alright. A strong, coarse fabric with warp fashioned from the giving, caring, loving friends and family that stands the test of time. There is no “I” in farm, call me on that if you ever catch me.
More thanks to sponsors that helped our recent Vermont Colored Wool Retreat such a success: Making Magazine (www.makingzine.com) by Carrie Hoge, Katrinkles Knitting Jewelry (www.katrinkles.com) by Katy Westcott, PomPom Quarterly (www.pompommag.com), Susan Branch (www.susanbranch.com), The Kiwi Pop Studio (www.thekiwipopstudio.com), Earthues – A Natural Dye Company (www.earthues.com), Tolt Yarn & Wool (www.tolt.com)
And now, beautiful captures from the past couple of weeks, for your viewing pleasure: