About Robin

Owner of Meridian Jacobs, farm and fiber shop. I raise Jacob sheep, teach fiber arts classes, weave handwovens for sale, and manage the store.

Animals at the Artery

I worked at The Artery in Davis yesterday. The current gallery show by Susan Stoll (a member who does photography) and Nicholson Blown Glass (non-member) is fantastic.

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I love how they matched the colors in the glass and the photos.

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Susan has set the bar high for when I do my show in November.

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As I walked through the rest of the store this sheep caught my eye. This is by a new member, gourd artist, Jenn Norpchen.

I decided to look for more sheep in the Artery. I found four artists’ sheep. Tile wall art by Eileen Hendren, photo by Deborah Lamoreux, candle by Jan Schubert, detail of painting by Marie-Therese Brown.

Then I decided that I could do a blog post about Animals in the Artery.

Horses are my other favorite animal besides sheep. Tile by Shannon Moore, detail of a pottery vessel by Marianne deBoer.

But I like dogs and cows too…

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… even  especially politically satirical dogs. Painting (dogs) by Linda Miller, cow photo card by Jock Hamilton, dog & cat sculpture by another artist new to the Artery, Marcia Smith, painting (cow) by Phil Gross, stuffed cow by Sara Yost, and trivets by Leslie Zephyr.

There are other animals represented too.

Birds. Detail of art-quilt by Marjan Kluepfel, etching by a third new member, Laura Morton, plate by Sharon Bloom.

How about creatures in the animal world beyond mammals and birds. Not all are my favorites but they can be subjects for lovely artwork as well.

Wood by Diana Kwan, glass dragonfly by Linda Marie Bird, ceramic fish by Jeff and Jimee Taylor, octopus by Heidi Bekebrede, fish print by Chris Dewees, dragonfly pin by Anita Winthrop, and sand-dollar earrings by Janine Echabarne.

I will be adding to the Artery’s animal collection in November when I present a show at the Artery.

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These are a preview of what will be in the show.

Random Farm Stuff

In no particular order, here’s some of what I’ve been doing. Photos with my phone.

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Spinning with the Tour de Fleece (while watching the Tour de France). This is kitty supervision (or challenge).

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Dealing with bad ram behavior. Notice that the welded wire panel is bent and pushed directly into the electric fence which is now not charged because of the contact.

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Picking blackberries.

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Farm Club was here (another post about that) and I introduced Peyton, the BFL ram I brought back from Oregon.

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Peyton’s selfie.

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While we were busy working in the barn, Maggie entertained herself.

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This is what she did to both hoses that were hanging on the chicken house. Notice that all  accessible wood has been covered with chicken wire. That’s because Maggie has already chewed what she could trying to get to the chickens. That freshly chewed board was the latest place she chewed before I put up the chicken wire. That is where the Little Chicken got out and then Maggie killed her. Maggie has more than three strikes.

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Coreopsis growing near the house.

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Coreopsis in the dye pot.IMG_0895

A blanket woven with last year’s dyed yarns.

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This is exciting–my 2017 yarn is here!!! The gray is a Timm Ranch/Jacob blend. The white is from the Anderson Ranch.

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Cleaning G1 (that’s the garage) and looking through boxes that haven’t been opened in years. This is a box full of trophies and ribbons that belong to the kids.

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And if you grow up in California you make a mission when you are in fourth grade. This is Katie’s.

Lambs Grow Up

I caught the ewe lambs yesterday to figure out which were still for sale. I’m planning to keep several this year and it’s always tempting to keep too many. I sold several adults this year and a couple have died so I can keep at least 6 or 8 as replacements.lambs to keep

These lambs are all on my list to keep. There are a few close-ups below.

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Meridian Jennie (bide a wee Buster x Meridian Jane). She won Reserve Champion Ewe at Black Sheep Gathering last month.

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Here is what she looked like in April.

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I just decided yesterday that I’d keep this one. She’s not named yet (Starthist Dragon x Meridian Alice).

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Here is a picture from May. Notice how the wool in front of her horns is shedding out. Adult Jacob sheep are not supposed to have woolly foreheads but the lambs are often born with wool that will shed.

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This is Jasmine (Starthist Dragon x Meridian Jazz).

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The wool on her forehead is also shedding.

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Here is what she looked like in April.

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Take a look at this nice looking ram lamb in late March. Look below to see why I don’t want to make deals for rams at a young age.

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This ram can not be registered.

Other lamb photos are on the website although I haven’t updated the listings this month. There are several ram lambs to remove. Ram lambs. Ewe lambs.

Visiting Grandkids

I just spent a week in Texas with my daughter’s family. The kids are 6 months and almost three. Here are some photos.

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Kasen is not crawling yet, but almost. Right now you can put him in one place and he doesn’t  get far. I give it about two weeks and he’ll be on the move.

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Who needs a pool when a bowl will do? Kirby’s horses are in that bowl too.

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Wearing one of her Princess dresses and reading to her baby who is in the shopping cart.

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After we built the tallest tower.

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Concentrating on making letters using Mommy’s special crayons.

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Yummy carrots. Dinner aftermath.

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Bath time.

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At Jump Wild, an indoor “trampoline park and bounce house”. It didn’t take Kirby long to warm up to the idea of jumping and then, of course, she didn’t want to leave.

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The family at the 4th of July parade.

Black Sheep Gathering 2017- #2

I had too many photos for one post (as usual) so here is another of the weekend spent at Black Sheep Gathering. In the last post I mentioned Peyton, the new BFL ram. He just wrote a post on Rusty’s blog that you might want to check out.IMG_0526

In case you wondered what it was like to stay at BSG in a tent…here’s a photo of my camping spot. This wouldn’t have been fun if there was rain, but this time BSG was dry.

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The whole reason for going on a Road Trip with Sheep is to show them (and maybe to sell a few). We showed on Saturday morning. The crew that showed up to help include Deborah and Brenda, Farm Club members, and Doris, who knitted that beautiful shawl in the last post, and Vicki, who has sheep and Border Collies back home. None had shown sheep before so we had a quick sheep showing lesson before the show started and then brought the sheep to the holding pen. There weren’t enough Jacobs this year (one other breeder) and we were showing against some Shetlands in the NCWGA Primitive Breeds Division.

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There were no yearling rams entered so first up was the Ram Lamb class.

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The 4-horn lamb on the left here was awarded Reserve Champion Ram.

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Next was the Yearling Ewe class.

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It was followed by the Ewe Lamb class.

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The judge liked Jennie (front) best.

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The yearling ewe, Vixen (on the left), and Jennie (right) went into the Champion class…

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…and Jennie got Reserve Champion Ewe.

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As I say all the time, I couldn’t do this without the help of my friends…including the people who took photos and sent them to me. Thanks! Everyone had a fun experience and they all went home with blue ribbons.

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I don’t know how many fleeces were entered in the Wool Show but these tables were full and there was a long line of buyers waiting outside.

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I checked back an hour or so later and there weren’t a lot of fleeces left.

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Saturday night there is always a potluck followed by the Spinners Lead competition. You can find handspun items in the most unusual places. (made by Marilyn from CA). It was so unusually hot for Eugene that attendance was lower at both these events. But we found familiar faces.

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Doris and I took the yearling ewes to the Spinners Lead, wearing our shawls. We had both won first place in the classes in the Fiber Arts Show. Mine was in the woven division and Doris’ was in the knitted division where she also was awarded Best Use of Natural Colored Wool.

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Other California friends were there.  Marilyn wore the shawl that she had woven the previous day in the Sheep-to-Shawl contest. Her Hangtown Guild won that competition and she borrowed a sheep to enter this show.

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Beth knit this beautiful shawl and also borrowed a sheep.

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This was Doris’ first time at BSG, first time entering this event, and first finished handspun project!!

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I took Cindy in the show and she wore a scarf woven of the leftovers from the shawl I wore. All the entries in this show are handspun or felted.

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This is the smallest sheep I’ve ever seen at this show and she was quite a crowd pleaser.

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The next day I was sitting in the barn and spinning and glad that I didn’t have to take a sheep into the Black Sheep Cup (Supreme Champion) competition in the heat of the afternoon when I realized “uh oh, I do have to take sheep into the ring for the Young Flock competition”. Thanks to Doug and Karen who quickly helped me get the sheep to their appropriate spot in the ring, although I wasn’t exactly dressed for showing in my tank top, shorts, and Birkenstocks.

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I loaded up and got on the road about 4:30. View heading south.

Black Sheep Gathering 2017

Black Sheep Gathering is my favorite West Coast Fiber Event. I just wish that it wasn’t so far away. It’s about an 8 hour drive if you just stop for gas and nothing more.

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This year it was important to leave early enough to avoid the heat in the Sacramento Valley. That meant I loaded sheep at 4 a.m. and was on the road by 4:45. I was passing the Sutter Buttes before the sun was up.

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First good view of Mt. Shasta, this year with plenty of snow.

Most of this post is just random shots in the barns and vendor hall.

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Our across-the-aisle neighbor, Teeswater. I can’t imagine dealing with that fleece.

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Other neighbors, Navajo-churro yearling rams, ready to be shown.

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Angora goat show.

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Wool Show judging. That is my ewe, Cindy’s, fleece. This is the first time in years I have entered a wool show. I had planned to keep this one, but I’m still spinning the other that I saved this year. This fleece sold within an hour of the sale opening.

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Meet and Greet with Peyton, the BFL ram who was coming home with me. (See Rusty’s Blog later for a post by Peyton.)

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This is Moo Shoe Pork, a crowd favorite in last year’s Fiber Arts show, created by Nancy (Peyton’s owner) and in the Liongate Farm booth, near Peyton.

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There were several spinning circles in the middle of the air conditioned vendor hall. These were very popular as the weekend wore on. People in Oregon get start to complain when the weather gets into the high 80s. And it did get hot, pushing the high 90s, but thankfully cooled off at night for us campers.

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Dyed mohair locks.

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M&M dispenser. I know, not fiber related, but maybe for keeping up strength while in a spinning competition?

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Our Farm Club friend, Gynna, demonstrating at the Clemes & Clemes booth. I carry this fabulous drum carder and other C&C products at the shop.

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Here is what she was doing. I haven’t tried dizzing off the drum carder before but certainly will now.

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I liked this display of fiber. The purpose was to show how the picker being sold in the booth prepared the fiber.

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I met up with Tina, Farm Club Emeritus, who now lives in Portland.

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She found a rug-hooking mini-workshop in the vendor hall.

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Two of us entered the Fiber Arts Show. This is Doris’ beautiful knitted shawl. She used Lori’s fleece and blended colors to create this gradient. Her masterful work was recognized with the award for Best Use of Natural Colored Wool!

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We had chosen Friday as the day that several of us could go out to dinner. Nine of us met in the sheep barn and it took awhile to figure out where to eat.

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Decision made, but then we needed to figure out who was going where after (motel, back to the fairgrounds, etc), which cars had room for extra people, and synchronize map apps.

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Seen on a car window and magnified about a million times from an iphone photo taken from a lane away.)

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After a good dinner we got a passerby to take a photo of all of us in front of the Eugene public art.

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Love the concept and the You Are Here part.