Cara, over at Blogtrotting, asked me to write a guest post. She has such a great idea, virtual vacations, and I’m happy to help out. If you’re interested in featuring your area, please contact Cara. Recently, I’ve been to some wonderful places that I’d have missed blasting down the highway. Thanks, Cara!
For the most part, my world is Thistle Cove Farm. It’s a small, thirty acre homestead in the southwestern Appalachian Mountains of Virginia. Dave’s Mothers’ people settled this valley a few hundred years ago and his cousin, “somethin’ somethin’ the 9th” lives in the home place just down the road. Things are slow to change and we consider that a good thing. If you live here, you are known as well as you know your neighbors. Good fences make great neighbors but the commonality of living in a rural community makes us friends as well.
We have a solid four seasons and find it’s best to prepare for each in the season prior. Especially winter as last winter we had snow drifts of 5 to 6 feet deep and that was in our driveway! Yes, my laundry is frozen on the line but it makes a great photograph, don’t you think? The lower right photo is the same shot, different season, as my header photo and the first photo in this entry.
I have American Curly horses, a hypoallergenic, somewhat rare breed, numbering fewer than 5,000 in the world and not to be confused with the Bashkir Curly horses of Russia. They are loved for their gentle, calm disposition and curious nature.
I also have Shetland sheep, another rare breed, and Romney, Merino and crossbred sheep. Their fleeces are used to spin, felt, weave and make warm accessories used in our cold winters.
It’s a hard life but a great life; wouldn’t trade it for anything else, any place else. While there’s always work that needs doing, there’s always time for fun stuff like spinning yarn. The sheep keep us company over the back fence while Shadow, my hound, sits beside Leslie to make sure she’s doing it right.
On April 9, 2011 we’ll host Sheep Shearing Day where people are introduced to a working day on a horse and sheep farm. Leslie comes to help with the fleece skirting and to demonstrate spinning yarn on an antique wheel. Other folks might show how to make a dulcimer, weave a basket, make horse shoes, weave a rug, quilt, crochet, tat or any number of heritage crafts. It’s always best to check before driving any distance as sometimes farm emergencies necessitate time changes.
Thanks for visiting Thistle Cove Farm; come back real soon.
Blessings ~ good neighbors ~ four seasons ~ blog trotting ~ rural communities ~