Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Saturday, Roger, Ali & I headed to the Paramount Blues Festival in Grafton. Wow! What a great experience! “Honeyboy Edwards”, the oldest living blues musician that played with Robert Johnson was there. The man is 94 years old and still touring! Diunna Greenleaf was fantastic- I wasn’t sure at first that I would enjoy her but – wow! – can that lady sing! She’s a great entertainer and puts on a wonderful show. Her band is awesome! There were some fantastic groups including The Alex Wilson Band, Greg Koch, & Zac Hoffman. We couldn’t stay for the whole evening this time. Next year we are definitely staying for the late night musicians and the “after” party.

So far behind...!

You never realize just how busy you are until you get a chance to sit and do “nothing”. It’s fair time- my annual week of just that- sitting in the sheep barn, walking around the fairgrounds, visiting with friends and neighbors and just hanging out. The last pup has gone to its new home & the sheep have mostly been shorn. We’ve been busy at work with the database project and we’re ready to launch it in Canada next week.

Sydney showed her lambs and sheep for 4H; Ali entered some of her artwork in open class. Both did well! Next year Syd may move on to FFA- too many things going on for her as well as she enters her senior year. And now it’s time for her to make decisions about which college to attend. It’s going to be either UW-Madison, UM-Twin Cities, or Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green.

As always, Sydney’s market lambs are too thin & small for the club lamb competition- but since they are mainly grassfed, they are slower growing but oh so tasty! Much better than the fat, yet always hungry club lambs. And the only market lamb with a well developed rumen! We also don’t use the same breeds as the club lambs (We use Targhee crosses compared to mainly Suffolk/Hampshire) so it’s like comparing apples & oranges.

She did well with the wool sheep: First Blue and Champion again with the mature Romney ewe; 2nd Blue and Reserve with her Cotswold ram lamb (pictured); First Blue & Reserve with her NC Jacob x Romney ewe. This year’s bottle baby, Mary, received a red as a commercial ewe. She is a Lincoln x Oxford cross. Every year we try to educate the kids that there are commercial wool breeds of sheep just like the commercial meat breeds. There is only one other youth who shows wool sheep sometimes- and this year he only showed one lamb. He took First Blue and Champion with his NC Rambouillet. So basically, until other kids get into wool breeds, she is her own competition.

Ali’s did great with her artwork. She’s so talented but shy; she hates to have the attention. She’s learned that it’s much different than entering 4H classes. There is a lot more competition and not everyone gets a ribbon. Her Airbrushed T-shirt took a 2nd, airbrushed landscape a 3rd, and her abstract Pen & Ink sketch a 4th. I’m hoping that she’ll plan on entering more for next year. She is her own harshest critic and I think some of the things she didn’t enter would have placed well.