Friday, November 25, 2016
The shop and barn are decorated for the holidays! We're open today, black Friday, until 4:00 and then we'll be open on weekends from 10 - 4 as usual.
This is Buddy when he was a cria (baby).
You'll find standing or cushing (lying down) alpaca dolls as well as teddy bears, horses, and even lions in our shop.
This photo is of Acura in the snow, just beautiful!
The mannequin is wearing an alpaca fur hat and a Saori scarf woven by Pam Bennett.
The tree has changed for the holiday season!
These soaps were handmade at Lavender Hill Farm by owner Paulette Batchek.
They smell great!
The hand felted alpaca ornaments are handmade by myself and are made from our alpaca's fiber.
In the shop you'll find apparel made in Peru such as scarves, sweaters,
socks, hats, gloves, mittens, glittens, and throws!
These are two different Saori pieces both woven by Paulette Batchek.
The infinity scarf on top, has white alpaca roving woven throughout it.
Head to the barn to visit with our 21 alpacas, two horses, and many chickens.
Acura was keeping an eye out for visitors!
Buffy, the Buff Brahma hen.
Our handsome rooster is all grown up and has begun to crow!
His feathers are so beautiful in the light.
Chance and Ruby enjoy the rainy weather by rolling in the mud!
Champ and Smokey just hanging out.
Bella seems to have spotted her stocking!
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
As I write this post, the sky is gray and rain is coming down, but we've been really lucky to have some beautiful weather this November! Since opening our doors on weekends on November 5th, we've had ideal weather for visitors to come to the farm to see the alpacas and browse our shop. These are some photos I took this past Sunday while the sun was shining bright. ~Rose
Sunday, November 13, 2016
Time flies when you're having fun taking care of alpacas! I realized I abandoned our blog, so I'm going to catch everyone up on what's been going on at the farm since my last post. A lot has gone on since then!
The Cuckoo Maran girls, who grew to be beautiful hens, were enjoying the sunshine one day last summer. They started laying eggs in July and in the photo on the left you can see how small their first eggs are compared to an adult hen's egg. The pullet eggs start out so small! Cuckoo Maran eggs are also known to be a very dark brown color and in the second egg photo you can see the difference in color and how the egg on the right is much darker than the Rhode Island Red egg on the left.
I love how these patriotic needle felted alpacas came out for the 4th of July!
The alpacas love to be cooled off with the hose on a hot summer day!
The sunflowers that made the sunflower fort grew to be so tall last summer. They were a sight to see!
Sisters, Rose Petal and Mia, looking on.
Chance posed for some photos one day. He's such a handsome guy!
This crazy Cuckoo Maran thought it would be a good idea to get into the bucket on top of the cabinet in the barn! I think she was hoping to lay an egg in there in complete privacy.
Champ in the sunlight. If you visit our farm, you'll find that he loves to greet people!
For Halloween I carved a Lavender Hill Farm pumpkin and also dressed up
our alpaca silhouettes for the holiday.
The year-round tree in the shop was dressed up in fall colors and leaves.
Kimmy came in for a close-up and below is Sabrina.
The tree looked beautiful for the holiday season and the front of the shop was decorated as well.
The barn was also decorated with a stocking for each alpaca and a pine wreath.
We welcomed Ruby to Lavender Hill Farm in November and she and Chance were reunited once again!
These girls had frost on their backs one chilly January morning, but they keep really warm all winter with all their fiber.
A couple of the Cuckoo Marans were keeping an eye on me while I did chores.
Buddy on left and Mateo on right.
February brought a decent snow storm to Voluntown.
Buster Brown has the curliest leg hair!
The first day of Spring brought us more snow! Acura on left and Thor on right.
We got seven new chicks of mixed breeds! There's two Golden Comets, a Buff Orpington, a Buff Brahma, an Amberlink, a White Plymouth Rock and a Columbian Rock Cross. We chose different breeds with hopes that we'll be able to tell them all apart unlike with our Cuckoo Marans and Rhode Island Reds.
Another snow storm came in April giving us a good coating of snow.
Mia loves to play with branches in her mouth as does her sister, Rose Petal.
In April we acquired a Glimakra Swedish loom. This loom can make rugs up to eight feet wide and any length! We look forward to weaving with alpaca on this loom. We had a "loom raising" where many of our friends and family helped to put it all together due to it's large size.
This year shearing day was on May 13th and Rick and Jeremiah from Twist of Fate Spinnery were our shearers once again. Their way of shearing is safe and efficient therefore the animals are less stressed in the process. All are welcome to watch how shearing is done and I'll post the date for shearing day 2017 as soon as I know.
The first six photos show how the blanket is sheared off the alpaca. The blanket is where the best quality fiber is found and is referred to as firsts. This is the fiber that we send to a mill to be made into yarn and roving.
Here you can see the difference between Smokey who has not been sheared
yet and his alpaca friends that have been sheared!
Champ, on left, and Mellea are full brother and sister.
The chicks moved out to the barn near the end of May when they were eight weeks old. They grew so fast!
I put in a new garden along side the shop with a path that leads to the barn.
The girls love grazing on the grass.
Beautiful blooms of summer.
The catnip loved the new spot I made it to grow in! I filled a raised bed made of cinder blocks with some old alpaca manure and it loved it! I even used some not so great alpaca fiber as mulch!
We had a Cuckoo Maran that became broody in the early summer, so we got her some fertilized eggs for her sit on and three weeks later she hatched four chicks! They're Black Australorps.
It was fun raising chicks where the hen takes care of them. They're so cute!
She was a good mom and was so proud of her little chicks.
As the chicks grew we found that we have one rooster and three hens.
Chance and Ruby
Buffy the Buff Brahma, on left, all grown up! The Black Australorps grew up fast!
The rooster is on the right.
The rooster is on the right.
Kimmy on top and Bella below.
Ruby is a chestnut colored horse and has a beautiful summer coat.
Thor is enjoying a nap in the sun.
The girls love being out on grass.
We kicked off fall with National Alpaca Farm Days on September 24th and 25th.
One day Mateo let me rake all around him!
Mateo on left and Buster on right.
Acura on left and Mia on right and Acura is Mia's dam.
Phew! That gets us up to date! The shop is open on weekends from 10-4 if you'd like to stop in! Visiting the alpacas is always free and is fun for the whole family. ~Rose