Saturday, March 16, 2013

Etsy Love

Oh Etsy, how I do love thee... I have been a member of Etsy for 7 years now.  It was a fantastic discovery when I stumbled upon it in its beginning days and I believe, even with the many changes it has undergone, it is still a fantastic web site.  I do know many of the stores I have marked as favorites over the years are no longer in business, but many still are and there have been many many more new stores created to fill in the voids.  Please take time to shop around on Etsy.  It is so huge, it can be a little overwhelming, but it is worth the time to get a feel for the site and I can promise you will discover many handmade goodies, made by individual hands, and people whose names you can see and who truly put their heart and soul into there creations.  One place to browse is the Treasury.  I just created a new treasury this week called Spring Romance.  Here is a glimpse:

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Black Betty Grabs the Blue!!

This past weekend we attended the Virginia Classic Alpaca Show in Lexington Virginia.  We (Southern Legacy, Clearview, Pactamere and Bay Shore Farms) took 10 animals to the show.  My farm, Southern Legacy Alpaca Farm, brought our first baby, SLAF Mojos Whoa Black Betty, to the show.  Betty is just a tad over 8 months old and has an awesome personality.  She is built like a mack truck, so sturdy and broad and she has such a fuzzy face!  This was our second show, we also attended CABO and took a 5th.  At the Virginia Classic we were in a class of five, and I was a tad nervous seeing as she is my very first animal to show under my farm.  I was overjoyed when the judge waved us up into first place!!!  I know Betty is very deserving of the placement, but you just never know.  Betty's dad is FPA's Mr Mojo Risin out of Black Mesquite and her Mom is an old school girl, Queen Wellington III who is out of a New Zealand Import and a Peruvian Import.  Betty has amazing staple length and a very organized, bold crimped fleece that is very bright.  I am tickled pink with her and absolutely love her.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Update on Little Feet

My little guy with the foot issue I mentioned a few blogs back seems to be doing much better. One idea we had was that his feet had gotten frost bite during an icy snow we had during February.  That would explain the thick peeling skin.  We had a bit of a nasty snow today so I took some time to clean his feet with a betadine wash.  Then I used the hairdryer to dry them off nicely and make sure all areas of his feet were clean.  We bought some little dog boots and they fit his little feet perfectly.  They did a good job protecting his feet for part of the day even though I took them off when I left the farm but if you can stay on top of them, changing and drying them in between, they were a fabulous solution.  I am very proud of how far this little guy has come.The peeling skin is almost completely gone and I think once Spring is in full swing, he will be running around at full speed with the rest of the cria posse.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

My Adopted Kitty Greta

My kitty is Greta. She is by no means the most lovable kitty in the world, or even on the block. The world is here for her use, along with us humans. I am basically worth existing, in her mind, because I provide food and have a warm lap. She will tolerate me petting her occasionally in return for these provisions. And I lover her very much. It has been nearly 8 years since the entire family paraded into Wendy Erskine's house on a mission to find a kitty. Oh, I had visions of uniquely marked kitties with magnetic personalities and charm. My one rule was no tabbies. So we spent a lot of time playing with kitties and petting kitties and loving kitties. I did know I wanted an adult. I felt like adults had less chance of finding homes so it was my chance to help one of them out. As I wandered the property, a little tabby followed close. She was not pushy but she had a look, like she was pretty done with all these annoying cats. She was not special in any way, just a plain, average ol' cat but her eyes spoke volumes to me. She wanted out. So now, almost 8 years later I am resting in bed with this very aloof, pretentious, fabulous kitty layed out across me and I am looking forward to another 8 more years. Please find it in your heart to adopt a homeless kitty. Check out Wendy's Feline Friends if you are in the Virginia area.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

My Soap Love

I have been using handmade cold-processed soap for a few years now.  I discovered handmade soap when I first fell head over heads for a website called Etsy.  It was around 2006 when I came across Etsy and fell in love with the Handmade Movement.  I also became really interested in trying to go more natural in the products I was using in my home.  I kept coming across some scary facts about the different chemicals found in the products we are constantly exposing ourselves too.  One thing that I found was easy to try and turned out to be a very beneficial change was body soap.  Something about knowing that the product I use was created from scratch from simple ingrediants by an actual individual who I can email by name gives me a sense of comfort.  Also, having tried MANY bath and body products throughout life, I honestly can say cold-processed soap is the BEST soap I have ever used.  I would like to highlight two handmade soap makers who I have bought many bars of soap from and have never had a bad experience.  One of these is a local Virginia soap maker: Old Dominion Soap Company.  The soap sold by this shop is simple, inexpensive, but at the same time, FABULOUS!   The SimplyPom soap is my favorite, but the olive oil soaps and specialty soaps are just as lovely.  And, my favorite product of their's is the hemp oil lotion, which has been a miracle worker for my eczema ridden skin.  The second shop is an etsy shop called KBShimmer.  This shop is full of lots of fun and wonderful products, all that I have tried have been awesome.  But the soap is so fun and full of scent and color, great as a gift, and so fun in your own shower.  Give handmade soap a chance.  Know where your money is going, know what less packaging and simple ingrediants can mean for our Earth.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Visions of Rovings Dancing in My Head

Spindle Looms... Drum Carders.... FeltLooms... Rovings..... Oh, how I am dreaming of all the wonderful things that can be done with fiber.  Right now I am wishing for a Drum Carder.  Shearing day is fast approaching and I am really catching the fiber bug.  I have had fun at shows playing with the Drum Carders on display and I think it would be fabulous to have one of my own.  I enjoy needle felting and wet felting, and I have taken quite a long break from crafting, while I have been managing the alpaca farm.  But, the itch to stitch and felt is coming back even stronger now that I actually own my own alpacas and will have some lovely fleeces to play with.  I am contemplating the relatively inexpensive Brother Drum Carder.  I think it may be just the thing to get me started.

Monday, February 25, 2013

An Ultrasounder's Must Have

If you do your own ultrasounds, it is really easy to go through a lot of ultrasound gel.  Also, the quality of the ultrasound gel can directly impact your results.  I have found this ultrasound gel on Amazon that works amazingly well and is sooo inexpensive.  I highly recommend it.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Affliction Highlight: Ulcerative Pododermatitis

So, we had a little cria present with some very unusual foot symptoms this week.  This poor little guy has had a rough go of it recently and it has not helped that he only weighed about nine and a half pounds on day two of his life.  He has recently had a major weight gain slow down and has been laying around a lot.  Fecals on him were not good, showing a heavy load of emac so he has been treated and cleared of those nasties.  Well, we were a little concerned about his gait.  Seemed like he was walking on eggshells which is a classic sign of Rickets, even though that has never been a problem on our farm and he had been receiving doses of jumpstart with careful consideration that Vitamin D can be overdosed.  So we took a look at his little feet and lo and behold, we saw something we did not expect.

His little feet had a layer of skin stuck to the bottom that was peeling and leathery.  He is two months old so his booties should be long gone.  The best guess I can come up with so far is:

Llamas and alpacas kept in moist conditions develop “immersion foot,” characterized by footpad blistering and sloughing, with variations depending on infection by anaerobic bacteria. Debridement, antiseptics, and foot protection may be required for prolonged periods to facilitate resolution. Treatment with penicillin is always indicated unless unique bacterial isolates are involved. These cases require a relatively long healing period.
He has been treated with Naxcel for five days so my continued treatment will be betadine washes, thorough drying, and a treatment with a anti-fungal topical meds to counteract in fungal infections that may try to set in.  Fingers are crossed that this little guy can come out ahead of this mess.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

My Baby Betty

My first baby was born on July 5th of 2012.  She is a beautiful true black female out of my foundation female, Queen Welington III. 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sports Pit

That is where this country keeps pouring its money... that is what we are investing in.  So sad.  I just can't stand the fact that our nation so heavily rewards those who are only rated on a limited ability, an ability that really has no productive addtition to our society.  I do not doubt that there are generous atheletes that give back, but the whole system is generally directed towards a negative path.  There is a reason that most commercials related to sports are focused on sex, alcohol and sodas.  These are some of our countries worse crutches, so why do we continue to pour our money in the pit?  The truly productive individuals, especially teachers, are so underpaid.  Our schools are falling down around us.  We continue to cut programs, especially the arts, but sports stars are living fantasy lives.  Kids are not trying to get the great grades, they are spending all their time, dreaming about making it big in the sports field because that is where the money is.  And then people wonder why our country is failing.  Why can't we wake up and stop obsessing about men and women playing professional sports?