Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Sheep at Pasture

Breeding is now over at Grace Valley Farms and the fall grazing season has begun. Our ewes and spring lambs are enjoying about 12 acres of grass and alfalfa!





2014 spring lambs 



Saturday, October 25, 2014

Grace Valley's Fall Spectacular Wool Special

As the year begins winding down, and Thanksgiving and Christmas approach, we would like to extend a special fleece offer as you prepare for the Holidays. We have recently had some of our premium fleeces become available for sale and we would like to offer them to you. Some of these fleeces have been in competition this summer, winning awards and touring the country! 

Fall Spectacular Savings

From now through November 10th, all orders placed via email will receive free shipping with the purchase of two or more fleeces! 
This special sale includes Frosty’s stunning fleece, the Overall Reserve Grand Champion fleece at the 2014 Iowa State Fair! Ribbon winners from other competitions this summer are also available. From white to black and many colors in between, you are welcome to browse the fleece selection on our 2014 Fleeces tab.

Our fall special also includes a big sale on roving! Charcoal Roving is now just $1.38/ounce or $5.50 for a 4 ounce ball! Buy 8 or more ounces and receive 10% off the already reduced price! Check it out on the Roving Tab.

Top skirtings are now marked at 25% off and ship free with the purchase of any fleece! View the available skirting on our 2014 Fleeces tab.

You must act quickly, as fleeces and wool products will be sold on a first come first serve basis!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Autumn Days and Harvest Time

Summer has come and gone. The leaves have changed from green to yellow, and now winter is quickly approaching. 

Please enjoy the latest updates from our Farm as we look back over a productive summer!

Our second cutting of hay was baled in August and a superb third cutting was taken in September.

Abby's summer litter of puppies have all found new homes! Faith, pictured above, went to Las Vegas to live with her new family

Our garden harvest has been progressing and we are almost finished!

Our leeks have all been chopped and frozen. We are looking forward to delicious soup this winter!

We had another bumper crop of watermelon! This one weighed in at 45 pounds!

The calves are growing nicely and gaining weight. Russet is especially large for his age.

We enjoyed a very special visit from our friends Pat and Lisa. 

We were privileged to take a short trip to the Grand Tetons with them. The fall scenery was breathtaking!

Here at Grace Valley Farms our fall work has begun and preparations are under way for winter. 

All too soon, falling snowflakes will replace the falling leaves. We are reminded of the many blessings the Lord sent our way this summer and we are grateful for another year!

Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.They drop upon the pastures of the wilderness: and the little hills rejoice on every side. The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered over with corn; they shout for joy, they also sing. 
Psalm 65:11-13

A Cinnamon Project

Julie from Iowa is pleased to share her artistic work with us...

Cinnamon's fleece from 2013 has been spun and knit into this beautiful blanket.

The variegation added a lovely effect to the finished product!

Thanks for sharing, Julie! 


Congratulations to Judy on winning
 Best of Show
 at Montana Fair 2014 with her hand spun/ hand knit 
 sweater made with wool from our ewe Dixie!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Iowa State Fair 2014 Wool Competition Results

Well, it's that time of year again ... Summer Fair Season! 

The Iowa State Fair represented our second of three wool competitions for 2014. We entered 6 fleeces this year.

Frosty's fleece won: 

1st place in 36's-48's Low 1/4, Common and Braid, Colored 
Grand Champion Hand-Spinning Fleece 
Overall Reserve Grand Champion Fleece

This marks the third year in a row that Grace Valley Farms has had the Overall Reserve Champion fleece at the Iowa State Fair!

Daisy's fleece won 1st place in her class (top) 
36's-48's Low 1/4, Common and Braid, White
Garfield's lamb fleece won 1st place in his class (bottom left)
50's-58's 3/8 and 1/4 Blood Combing, Colored 
Gilbert's lamb fleece won 1st place in his class (bottom right)
50's-58's 3/8 and 1/4 Blood Combing, White

Gomer's fleece took second in his class, behind Garfield's fleece.
Faith's fleece won a red ribbon in her class behind Frosty's Overall Reserve Champion fleece.

Special thanks to Rick and Dee Heinrich for transporting our fleeces to the fair. 

Photo Credits: Martha Meyer

Psalm 100
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Abby's Second Litter of Puppies

Abby recently delivered her second litter of pups! The delivery went well and Abby has been taking good care of her babies. This littler includes 7 pups ... 5 males and 2 females! 

Two More Calves

Iris, one of our heifers, delivered her first calf this summer. We named her healthy little girl, Lilac. 

Olive also had a heifer calf. Kalamata is all black with a little white patch on her belly. 

A New Tractor Joins the Farm

We are excited about the arrival of our new tractor! 
A 2010 Massey joined the farm this summer.

The new tractor made baling our first cutting of hay much easier! 

We are thankful for our new addition! 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The New Life of Spring

The long, cold winter is finally over and spring has sprung here in southern Montana! 

The snow in the mountains has been melting, causing our river to rise.

Our fruit trees have bloomed! The winter was hard on many of them, but they all survived.

The peony bushes around our house are blooming.

The lilac bushes have been fragrant.

A robin built her nest on our horse trailer. We enjoyed watching the babies hatch and grow up.

Our ewes and lambs enjoyed the green grass of spring.

Edgar and Jack got to nibble at the grass in our barnyard.

This little guy is growing nicely. In a few months he will be headed off to Wisconsin where he hopes to sire many beautiful lambs. 

Our four calves and their mamas.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. - 2 Cor. 5:17

Spring Calves

Our four spring calves are doing great! 

So far we have three bull calves and one heifer calf.

Bonnie and Russett

The calves have enjoyed the freedom of our pasture. They love to run through the tall grass and take naps together. 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival 2014

Photo Blog from the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival 
by: Emily

I was privileged to attend the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival this spring with my dear friends, Pat and Lisa. We enjoyed the weekend at the festival ... buying, observing, competing, and learning!

Our little group arrived at the Fairgrounds a day before the festival opened. Our missions was to register fleeces for the competition.

The check-in area was swarming with activity. 

In this photo, Lisa and I are checking our fleeces in. The ladies raved about the fleeces and thought they were beautiful! 

After checking the fleeces in, we spent the rest of the day enjoying the Baltimore, Maryland area.

We arrived back at the fairgrounds early the next morning. The traffic lines were already long and the parking lot was filling fast.

Our first stop was the fleece show. We were excitedly awaiting results from the show and wondered how our fleeces had placed. There were almost 800 fleeces on display!

Faith's fleece finished first in her class - Natural Colored Long-Wool

Gilbert won second place in White Long-Wool.

Daisy's fleece took second in the Romney breed class.

We were thrilled with the results as the competition was strong in the classes we entered!

After the fleece show, we started shopping! There were nearly 1,000 vendors offering their goods to Festival goers.

The colors of yarn were striking and the quality was amazing.

There was a wide variety of fibers and yarns available. From wool to camel, yak, silk, flax,angora, cashmere, and alpaca, you could find almost any type of fiber you desired. 

Beautiful balls of Tussah silk/Merino roving.

Silk and merino wool roving

Raw fiber was prevalent among the vendors. At this booth, alpaca wool was sold in many different natural colors.

As well as yarn, roving, and supplies, finished products were also for sale.

We heard there were around 100,000 people there during the two days of the Festival.

 As times it was difficult to maneuver. 

I enjoyed watching some of the sheep shows in the show barn. Here, Colored Romneys are being shown.

White Romney ewe show

A beautiful pair of Corriedales

The big Corriedale went on to win Supreme Fleece at the Sheep Show.

Cute Romney lambs

There were many different sheep breeds represented at the Festival. The Parade of Breeds held in the show ring was fun to watch.

One of the highlights of the Festival was the Sheep to Shawl Contest. 

There were seven teams competing this year.

Each team was required to shear a sheep, card the wool, spin the yarn, and weave a shawl in 3 hours.

It was exciting to watch the teams work.

This team had a baseball theme to their costume, display, and weaving. 

The winning team of ladies (above) created a beautiful shawl which included whole locks spun and then woven into the shawl.

Lisa, Pat (photographer), and I enjoyed our time at the Festival and are grateful for the opportunity to have gone!