I finally have had some time to sit down and update the blog, that's right it is currently December 29th. That means it has been almost one year since I have updated the blog, and many things have happened.
In February 2013, we multiplied the alpaca herd! We went from Autumn, Solstice, and Virgil, to Achilles, Kipling, Kuhio, Hawaii, Merry Christmas, Lili, Palisades, Denali, Kailua, Merlin, and Nicky. We went from three alpacas to fourteen! It was such a big jump for our little farm, and we could not have done it without our good friends Judy and Charlie from Perfect Peace Alpacas. They helped us a great deal during the transition.
In March, we took two of our boys to the local alpaca show and they both placed in their fawn classes. It was our first time showing our little guys, and we loved every minute of it. The judges confirmed our thoughts on our animals, so we could apply it to our future breeding program. A big thank you to Judy for convincing us to enter, and assisting us.
That same weekend, I also received a gift of five baby ducklings from my husband to be. They turned out to be four girls and one handsome drake. Once they were old enough, we allowed them to free range with the rest of the chickens. The flock of ducks are the funniest group of critters to watch on our farm. They greet us when we come home from work, and waddle over very quickly when it is feeding time. No, we do not plan on eating our ducks. Instead, we use their eggs for baking, cooking, and anything else we can do with them. Their eggs are bigger than the chicken eggs, and just as tasty. We even sent some eggs to the Green Living class in Roanoke City Schools, so the eggs could be hatched. As a result, the flock went from five to eight.
In May, the herd was shorn and the fiber was sent off to be processed by a few different mills. We planned on doing it ourselves, but the clippers went ka-put (clearly a technical term), and so the Schroeders' son took care of our crew. The fiber was processed into a variety of weights: sport, lace, worsted, etc. We looked forward to selling the fiber, and working with it in a few projects ourselves.
In June, we were married in a beautiful wedding. We were lucky to be surrounded by our family and friends on a warm, sunny day. We incorporated the farm into our decor and special moments as much as possible, short of bringing the herd to the wedding. Our wedding cake even featured a custom alpaca topper. That day will always shine in our memories.
In July, we went on a fabulous honeymoon to Hawai'i. Once we came home, we hit the ground running. At the end of July we traded Kailua for Lilliput, from our good friends Beth and Neal of Painted Spring Alpacas. We made the trade, so that each of our farms could expand on our bloodlines.
Then in October, we further expanded the herd to include a variety of colors, such as gray, bay black, and light fawn. We added Ariana, Bellisima, Rosabella, Franny, and Tilly. These lovely ladies brought in some great bloodlines, fiber, and colors. So we went from fourteen to nineteen!
In November, we expanded our household fur kids by one. We went into another co-ownership with our great friend, Sharon Ferraro, on a blue afghan puppy. Our new little boy, Dragon, flew in all the way from New Zealand. From the time he came out of his carrier in New York, he has never stopped wagging. We look forward to spoiling this little man and watching him grow in the coming year.
Throughout the year we (meaning Donald) expanded the fields and have been developing the property as needed. Donald has been quite busy, along with our neighbors, and his father. Our friends, family, and neighbors are always so helpful and supportive of our mad adventures. Someone always seems to be around to lend a hand.
As a result, of all this expansion, we are done with expanding the herd for quite some time. Our goals for 2014 are to focus our energy on the fiber, breeding, and the marketing end of our alpaca business. We are looking forward to the New Year for all of the possibilities that may come our way. We want to send a huge thank you to ALL of our family and friends from near and far, who support and believe in us. We love you more than words could ever express. May 2014 find you in good health, and surrounded by those you love.