Wednesday, May 10, 2006


As promised, here are some pictures of Alpaca Shearing Day! Some background first: 4 or 5 years ago, my fiancé's mother decided she was tired of her day job and wanted to start an alpaca farm. So she and her husband moved from Florida to central Illinois and bought a large property and some alpacas. Now she sells yarn and alpacas here (there are even some pictures of me in that site somewhere!). Anyway their kids live all over the country and Shearing Day has recently become another sort of holiday for their family, or at least an excuse for lots of people to show up at their house and help out and eat yummy baked goods. This was my and the fiancé's first time at shearing day. (Some friends from Chicago drove out with us and when we got there and my friend saw the ten or so people in overalls gathered around an alpaca on a tarp, he said, where is the beer tent and the oompah band? I guess I had been talking about Shearing Day with such excitement that I gave him the impression that it was like a big festival and the whole county would be there. Although he swears he had fun anyway.)

This may not be so exciting for some, but for me, a city girl, it was downright thrilling. So that's where all my yarn comes from!

Here are some of the sillies with all their fluff:
so cute, right?

the shearing:
and man, I never knew this, but alpaca spit STINKS. Apparently it is so bad that they have to leave their mouths open for a while after they spit, since even they can't stand the smell. Poor things. There was a very wide range of behavior among the animals. Some were totally calm and relaxed, and some were screaming and spitting and peeing all over the place. Yuck.

the shorn :
and look! I'm learning how to spin! man, is that some ugly yarn. (I insisted on taking it home with me though, I figured I can't just throw out the first yarn I ever made with my own hands.)


merry said...

Those alpacas look like they lost their shirts in a bet! Look at their posture, all slumpy and sad. POOR THINGS! ALTHOUGH, I LOVE MY ALPACA YARN! Thank you alpacas for sharing!

Marie said...

They look so skinny without the fluff! But I still want one, particularly one like the cream lovey in the first picture.
I think your first yarn looks great. You should make an alpaca with it. :)