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February 2021

Birthdays
There are no birthdays this month, however it's still a big month. First of all its Mr. Fitz & my anniversary! In other exciting dates it's been 3 yrs since we got our first alpacas, 2 yrs ago I got my first spinning wheel & 1 yr ago we got our first llama!
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Farm Happenings
As most of you know we just had a big, snowy, cold storm come through this past few days. We ended up getting around 6 plus inches of snow, our temps dropped into the negatives, it was -8 this morning, which has been our low (not counting the wind chill factor). Everyone seems to have weathered it well enough. We had a couple of frozen water troughs even with the tank heaters, but they were easy enough to break through the ice. The barn is a mess, full of bedding and a frozen potty pile lol, but again easy enough to get cleaned up once it warms up.
 
Oh no I haven't gotten to the Giveaway!
I ran out of time these past few weeks between classes, projects and life in general. However, I finally have the items lined up, I just need to get photos of them and get them posted. I am hoping to get that done in the next couple of days! I will be hosting our first social media giveaway soon. I am hoping to do these every so often to help our Social Media pages grow and get our farm out there more. This one will be held on Facebook so watch for details. If you have a Facebook account you are eligible to participate. To enter, you will need to make sure you have liked the farm page and share the giveaway post. Then a random name from those who participated will be drawn to win some great goodies! Watch for details on Facebook!
 
We now also have a TikTok account!
Follow our farm @msfitzfarm
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@ The Cottage
I have been working on the yarn from the Project Corner, knitting a special order bobble pillow and starting to process Virgo's fleece to get some spun into yarn for another special order. I have also been playing around with dyeing. Have had some successes and others I've learned from.
 
In exciting news-I got a brand new Kromski Minstrel Spinning Wheel as a 19th Wedding Anniversary gift! I love how smooth and quiet she spins and making yarn is so nice!
 
I absolutely love the opportunity to continue learning new techniques! In addition to my weaving class, I've also joined an online 3 month spinning class with JillianEve. I'm hoping to better my skills and learn some new things from this course.
 
I also got the opportunity to participate in a 2 week workshop I've been wanting to do for some time now-SGC Basic Course (Sorting, Grading and Classing) with Wini Labrecque. These skills will help me further class my fleeces for appropriate yarns and projects.
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Project Corner
My first project featured in the Project Corner....
Last month I did some combing and blending of Preston's fiber to some merino/tussah silk blend. I did get that blending finished, however, I'm afraid I'm not going to have enough for the amount of yarn I think I'm going to need. I've never planned a project this way before with the project in mind, then to spin the specific yarn for it. I've always just planned my projects around the yarn I've already got. So this has been a new learning curve for me. So to stretch the alpaca blend a bit further I did a 3 ply-2 in the alpaca/merino/silk blend and 1 in just the merino/silk blend. I spun each of my singles on Pansy, my Ashford Traditional, each of my 3 singles were around 11 wpi (wraps per inch). I then plied them on Tulip, my Sid Sharples bulky spinner. When all was said and done I ended up with a 55% alpaca to 45% merino/silk blend. After shrinkage from washing and finishing I have about 242 yds of 6 wpi chunky 3 ply yarn. I do have another Preston fleece if this isn't enough that I can go ahead and blend and spin some more. We'll see after I get started knitting it!
      
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Weaving Adventure
I have yet to get going on my big loom but I did get to take an awesome class from a friend on a peg loom. I made a raw Finn sheep fleece rug-it measures approx 3'x2' and is a variety of gorgeous greys. It now sits on the hope chest my dad made, cushioning my new wheel! I have so many ideas for future projects made from alpaca!
   
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@ The Barn
It's that time to start weaning the babies! First was Hope. I took her down to a bottle per day for the last month and gave her the last one a few days ago. She's doing great and enjoys her extra hay, alfalfa and cria food. I will start weaning the others from their moms in the coming weeks. Everyone is now around 5 months old and super active and healthy!
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@ The Goat Hut
We are hoping to be welcoming 2 female angora goats here in the near future.
We are still on the hunt for some of those big wooden spools for The Rice Krispies (Snap, Crackle and Pop) so we can create them a better play area. 

 

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