Tuesday, May 8, 2012

maryland sheep and wool

for thirty-nine years, the first full weekend in may has meant the maryland sheep and wool festival. this was my fourth visit and it just keeps getting better. i worry that the extreme anticipation will lead to disappointment, and yet i'm already excited to go again next year!
sandy, joan and i have travelled together lots, this trip amythefibergoddess joined us. we had a leisurely drive to maryland, checking into the hotel by four. best choice ever in lodging! on the recommendation of a fiber friend we chose to stay at the marriott residence inn. it was clean, comfortable and really made the trip more enjoyable. we were up and to the fairgrounds by 8:30 saturday morning.

the weather was perfect for me, but my travel companions were very warm. while the crowd was large, i thought that it seemed less crowded than in past years. yes, there were times when you could not possibly fit another person in a vendor booth, but i had no problem returning later in the day when i could have room to see everything.
our first stop was a booth that has all sorts of vintage/antique items. the draw is their type set letters that we have been using to spell all sorts of wool related words.... wool, yarn, sheep.... i added skein to my collection. then sandy was off to the sheep barns while amy, joan and i hit the fleece sale. with sandy's help, joan and i had pre-ordered several fleeces to keep and share, so the fact that we were even shopping at the sale was crazy. yet shop we did! we found a coopworth fleece to split from a farm that my coop came from last year.
that mission accomplished, joan wandered off at her own pace while amy and i decided to see it all. luckily i found the fiber friend who is teaching me to drop spindle. it is the one spinning direction i felt that i needed to accomplish but had no clue how to go about it. sandy m. gave me a quick lesson at stella maris and offered to help me choose a spindle and give me a 'how-to'. she took me into the golding fiber tools booth, showed me the one i wanted, i purchased and on we rolled. we bumped into lots of fiber friends and we wandered through the barns and buildings. sandy sent us back to ozark carding mill to check out the merino roving. we have all spun merino top, but never seen merino roving. so this was the fiber we all purchased to have fun with.

at dinner, sandy shared with us that she had found a wonderful fleece that she was considering. she wanted to know if we would mind her getting it. how could any of us deny her a fleece purchase? then she told us that it was still attached to the lamb. a live lamb. a lamb that would be riding home with us.
we claimed naming rights as we all laughed ourselves silly about the adventure we were on. after some brainstorming we came up with miles. having traveled to maryland from california and would now be heading to new york it seemed perfect! meet miles!

he was tucked into the back of the car where he accompanied us back.
he took the adventure in stride, although having the complete attention of four doting woman was not much of a hardship. we soothed him, kept him fresh and clean with lots of pats and snuggles at each rest stop.
at last word, he has settled into his new home just fine and will be the daddy of next years flock of lambs! as for me, here is my festival haul....
not nearly as impressive as a new lamb, but i'm thrilled just the same!

wonder what we'll bring home on our next adventure???

1 comment:

Diane said...

That is just too funny! Can't wait to see you new stash additions and hear all about it. Our weekend with the Yarn Harlot was terrific!