Thursday, October 29, 2009

New home for alpaca, farm visit

It was a great day in the animal world -- that despite the fact that it poured, sprinkled, rained, pitter pattered, monsooned, deluged -- it was wet today.

Took Rotanev, the alpaca, to Columbia to be a buddy to Roscoe, the alpaca. Charles and Shirley were excellent hosts and Charles is one amazing gentleman.

I've broken my old record of selling a llama to a person who was 84-years-old. I've now sold an alpaca to a person who is 92 years old -- and still going strong!

Roto will have a wonderful new home, protecting swans and waterfowl.

Then it was a visit to the Peach's farm to see their wonderful animals. Beautiful -- even in the rain. Warm and dry in their barn. They are great stewards of their herd.

A good day.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Getting things done in the rain

It keeps raining. It's mushy, muddy, somewhat miserable.

But today -- in the pouring rain -- my animals were out enjoying the lush green-ness of the hay field. They are eating for a living in that hay field. Happily.

Will deliver an alpaca to his new home on Thursday -- barring another monsoon.

It makes me appreciate sunny days -- sunny days will return. It's bound to happen.

In the meantime, the llamas and alpacas are enjoying the damp, cooler weather and their delicious green fields.

And I'm looking forward to the return of the sun -- eventually.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Alpacas spread their wings

Sold 6 alpacas yesterday. Everett A. bought some of my most fabulous babies and a few established males.
Little Nigel (a fan favorite here - at right) will be going to his new home, as will Clover (far right), Bonita, Nellie Knee Sox, Johnny B. Good and Captain Picard.
They will have a good home and hopefully will be seen at some Alpaca Shows next spring.
It is always hard to see my "babies" go -- but I keep the mamas and let the babies spread their wings at new farms. It's so rewarding to mentor new owners and help them develop their own herds, and their connection to these wonderful animals. Yippee! It's a win/win.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Fencing is done!

Jack, Ben and I stretched and attached 1300 plus feet of fencing in the back acres today and yesterday.

Now the animals can eat the luscious hay before we get our first heavy frost.

It was hard work -- sweating work -- power lifting work. But in the end, it's all good.

Farming is difficult, dangerous work -- nearly every day. There is an opportunity for corral panels to tip over and land on you in the barn (right, Amanda?); for fall off of stacked high round bales while re-attaching the tarps; possibility of being pinched or poked by wire/fencing; and then there's the Bobcat and all of the havoc it can wreak. And, of course, the tractor and it's ability to die in the middle of the pasture -- and gasoline cans to be carried hundreds of feet.

Wow. It's amazing that we're all still alive and walking, isn't it?

I'll take pix in the back acres with llamas munching mouth-fuls of grass. Look for them!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fencing is hard ranch work

Fifty t-posts went into the ground today. I'm going to be opening up our hay field for the winter to my animals. The hay is rich, green, luscious. It will build strong mamas and babies.

It's only the 150 posts and miles of fence to attach that stand between the girl herd and their munching.
Without the posts and fencing I could have animals prancing around St. Clair Square -- llamas on the loose!

I thought of the show "The Biggest Loser" today as I was pounding post after post into the ground, sweat dripping into my eyes. And I was thankful for the excellent health and strong arms that I am blessed to possess. Skinnier would be good -- but would I sacrifice the power and strength?

Shoulders might be creaking and squeaking tonight -- but not bad for a 60-year-0ld.
I'm grateful for the healthy lifestyle that has contributed to my wellness. And thankful to God for the opportunity to share my life with these beautiful animals.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

finished tipi

A beautiful morning dawns on our Native American tipi. I love the "prayer ties" on the tips of the poles -- and the rich colors.
Handprints are courtesy of my grandkids. Footprints courtesy of my dear friend, Amanda.
The tipi is up due to the efforts of many hands. I thank them for the gift of their time and energy.

Tipi at sunset

What a beautiful image -- this was when our tipi was being raised. That's Tom in the hat -- and Michael walking around the tipi with the rope to secure the poles.
The poles came from Yellowstone. Glen and Misty Thomas, both Native Americans, went to cut two sets of poles. They live in Niobrara, NE.
They advertised one set on and I connected with them there.
I drove to Kansas City, MO -- they came from NE -- and we met.

I love the tipi that we've put up -- the colors, the handprints -- it's all good. But I especially like this photo. How lovely. Thank you to all who helped raise the tipi.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Such precious jewels, these grandkids are. Our A-team: Alex, Ashley, Amy, Andrew. Then Brianna (and her soon-to-be sister) and Jack Dean.
Fun picking pumpkins, fun putting up a tipi, fun at Red Robin, fun at the drum circle. Even their clothes are fun -- Steelers outfits, hats, North Face jackets, Disney Princess outfits.
We are very, very blessed to have healthy, happy grandkids who love to come to the farm.
Maybe THEY will continue the llama and alpaca tradition -- or not -- but it's great to enjoy them now.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Blessing the pit

Today's Native American Pit firing was awesome.
At top, Chad, Jessica and Freda examine the sage bundle.
At top right: Is that the spirit dancing into the trees following the lighting of the pit?

Bonnie Brave, potter, is shown loading the pit with wood.

Medo was kind enough to offer a blessing of the pots in both English and the Navajo language. It was like listening to music in the spoken word. Thank you to Medo for sharing this gift with all of us.

We had great, delicious, warm, beautiful soups to share following the lighting of the fire. Good bread, good food, good friends. A delightful combination.

Then it was time for the tipi to go up. Tom is so wonderful to have taken the lead in setting up the poles and attaching the tipi. Thank you, thank you.

Tomorrow we will remove the pots from the pit at 3:30 - followed by more soup and then a Native American Drum Circle. A memorable, wonderful weekend.

Friday, October 16, 2009

tipi poles and footprints

Met Misty and Glenn Thomas in Kansas City, MO yesterday. They are from the Santee and Crow Native American Tribes.
They went to Yellowstone and cut their own tipi poles and sold them on

I brought them home sticking out at least 10 feet from my llama trailer. Wow! And it rained the whole way.

BUT -- it'll all be worth it tomorrow when my tipi goes up!

Then Amanda came and "walked the walk" around the tipi. The footprints turned out great.

This weekend is our huge event -- so please come if you're in the neighborhood.

A donation to llama rescue is requested -- and bring snacks/water.

Pit firing at NOON -- with a blessing of the pots by my friend, Ramiro Pacheco, of Navajo heritage. It will be wonderful.

LOVIN' the pix of the yellow feet! Thanks 'manda (and for barn cleaning assistance, too.)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Pumpkin farm fun

All 6 of our grandkids were on hand today to put their handprints on our newest Native American tipi.

Then it was off to the pumpkin farm to pick out pumpkins, slide down the straw bale slide, ride the ponies, get pictures taken and laugh and giggle.

Then we caught "Hawk" the llama -- as he goes to his new home this week.

That's Baby Jack Dean in the photo with his doting mama, Trina. His pumpkin cap added to the fun of the day.

Great day to be a grammy, it was.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

FARMFEST '09 -- Next Weekend!

Pit FireThe weekend of October 17-18 will be a wonderful educational learning experience at Wier World Farm. We will kick off with the Native American Pit Firing by talented potter Bonnie Brave. She will offer the opportunity for potters to immerse themselves in the ancient Native art of the firepit. Bonnie has several years of "hands-on pit firing" experience. Also, we are offering a "blessing of the pots" before the fire is lit. Saturday, 12-4:30pm and Sunday, 3:30-5:30pm. Contact Bonnie for more info!

TipiRaising of the Native American Tipi
It's been over a year since we've had a tipi in our midst. It's ordered and the hand hewn poles are being prepared by Bruce Volpert. At 4:30pm we will gather in the pasture to "raise the tipi". If you've always wondered how it's done, please join us for an awesome event.

Native American Drum Circle
Sunday, following the unearthing of the pots (available for sale), we will host a Native American "Drum Circle". Bring your own drum (a limited number will be provided) to this "in-the-round" gathering. Join lea drummer Patrick Kennett as we follow the "heartbeat of Mother Earth" and celebrate.

There will be a donation box to go towards the rescue work at our farm ($5 suggested). Please bring your own snacks and bottled water.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Halter training on a rainy day

Great morning with some of my favorite people. Amanda came by to begin halter training with Clementine. She is the loveliest little cria -- but gosh is she spunky.
It was Kate's first day on the job. She's a biology major with a love of animals and a desire to learn about large animal care. We can do that here! She pitched right in and I LOVE a self-starter!
My girl Friday, Rebecca, was here today. Working her usual magic with the animals. They really, really adore her -- and know she's a "llama whisperer."
Even in the off and on rain -- it was a great, sunny morning at the farm.
I'm so lucky.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Yoki - welcome to the world

Yoki (Native American for rain) was born today on our farm. After an exciting morning of tipi painting, and an afternoon checking on the herd, I was greeted by little Yoki in the barn, with her mama right beside her.

I put them in my small paddock so they could bond -- and Yoki was nursing well from her mama, Piper, in short order.

This is 4 girls in a row for me. How sweet is that?


tipi painting day

Amanda came over and we painted the tipi today. It's a luscious blue on top, with cranberry all around the bottom. Next will be yellow footprints walking across the bottom -- and then my grandkids' handprints.

Perhaps we'll add the "four directions" symbol -- or feathers hanging down from the beautiful blue. Plus Rebecca P. will paint Amanda the llama's portrait on the tipi whenever she comes home from college in WI for Thanksgiving. Fabulous.

Tipi painting is good for soul -- not so hot for the back and knees, though.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Rebecca was an enormous "Gal Friday" at the Botanical Gardens. Here she poses with "Hawk" -- her future llama.
I don't know who's cuter!
Nora & Ellen have been volunteering to head the Botanical Gardens event for 18 years.

Here they took a short break to pose with our Amanda, the fabulous llama.

Looks like everyone is having fun!

Botanical Gardens

Well, well -- kudos to the following llamas:

Anya & NightOwl
Little Moon

and alpacas:


and people:

Katey & Brianna
Amanda & Travis

for the assistance in making the 18th Annual Best of Missouri Market at the Missouri Botanical Gardens so fabulous.

It was a LONG two day-event -- with thousands of people coming to see the llamas and ask the oft-repeated question: "What's the difference between a llama and alpaca?" We answered that one until we were blue in the face!

No thanks to the people who don't use opportunities for a "teachable moment" for their kids -- e.g. the parent who watched as her daughter destroyed my spinning wheel -- pumping as fast as she could until the drive band busted. Not so happy about that one.

We passed out lots of information and coloring pages; Wier World brochures and "Basic care" brochures; fiber samples from a rescue llama and business cards. It was wonderful.

Not likely to do it again as it was very difficult on both people and animals, but it was an experience.