Hey there frankie fans….. (maybe we should start a fan club, eh?) my last post was rather plain, and I promised new photos of the progress on the new house, er… barn, so here it is.
First, however, I have to share some news! As you know, the wench likes the sell the shirt off my back, and she does this at various places like farmers markets and craft shows, etc. Well, starting right now, you can get the products offered from the Mountain Top at the Independence Farmers Market ON LINE! How cool is that???!!?? Here’s the link: http://independencefarmersmarket.locallygrown.net/market check it out!
Today, November 9th, wench and Aunt June are over at the Fancy Gap Elementary School hawking their wares at the Christmas Bazaar. At the end of November, right after Thanksgiving, there is a special farmers market in Independence, so they will be set up there as well, AND you can find my yarns at Wooly Jumper in Floyd, VA and at the Fiber Artisans Studio in West Jefferson, NC. We do get around. One of these days she will bring me, frankie, the star of this show, to visit the folks who actually buy my shirts. but in the meantime, I’m taking care of the flerd here.
Speaking of taking care of the flerd, Geronimo (the horndog) had a little difficulty this week. I TOLD him not to be eating those oak leaves like a piglet because they are toxic to goats. However did he listen??? no. he never does. I also told him it was not a good idea to breed daisy the sheep, but he had to try it. Anyway, he pigged out and got a giant case of the soupy poopies. Man, it wasn’t fun being around him. Wench gave him 2 oz of mineral oil and a shot of dura-pen and he seems to be coming out of it, but he was a stinky mess for a couple of days – even more so than the natural odor emanated by a billy goat this time of year. The oak trees are in the pasture, and the leaves blow down when they die and a couple are ok, but not a lot. Maybe builder will cut down all the oaks when he makes more huts.
So now, without further adieu, here is the regular progress shot of the barn:
pretty impressive, eh?
and here is the a shot of the upstairs:
and the third floor:
In other news, the guineas have been re-located in Phase I of the big move. They are adjacent now to the greenhouse, and they don’t quite get it. Oh, they know where their food is, but are not quite sure they want to actually move in. Tell ya what, I don’t miss their squawking in the barn. We have a new resident french angora buck, his name is Mick Jagger. So I think I’ll name his babies after Rolling Stones’ songs – Clems Satisfaction; Clems Hot Licks, you get the idea… Moonshadow’s babies are getting irish names – (he’s a Celtic Hare buck) Kerry Megan, Malachi, Fiona, Bronwen, etc. Oh, and Moonshadow got his own wine this week. Here’s the photo we used for the label:
It’s called Moonshadow’s Shine Wine. It has moonshine in it and is a dessert wine. It must be the year of the rabbit around here – last years wines were named for us goats. the year before it was the dogs. this year it’s the rabbits. Buttons got his own wine, too. owell, it doesn’t take too much to amuse those two, wench and builder.
Ok, gotta get ready to start the day, it’s almost 6 AM and wench will be down soon to feed us so she can go hawk her wares. or my wares that she stole from me.
Thanks for reading frankly speaking – let me know what you think about the fan club idea (I think it’s brilliant)
Well, it’s been a while since my last update. It’s been biz-zee around here. The wench went to Harrisburg, PA, in mid-October for the 90th annual ARBA convention, and she took Julianna, Lillianna and Bronwen for frenchies, and Momma Cass for the American Chinchilla side of the equation. Samson went too, but not to show, just to be a part of the Youth Contest and then he went home with our friend Melissa to have a hot date with her American Chin doe Dela.
Speaking of hot dates, Geronimo is being an obnoxious teenage boy. You’d think he had a death wish the way he has been behaving. I’ve heard of going both ways, but this guy goes ALL ways. First he bred all the angora goat does. twice. then he started chasing ME around. I kept hiding in the barn to get away from him (this is the both ways part). Then, the other day, I caught him trying to breed DAISY, the sheep! Nigel was not impressed. Either was Wench. Either was daisy. hahahah
But hopefully things will settle down here now as winter approaches. It’s 45 degrees today, which is perfect weather. If you are a goat.
Sorry, no pictures this time. I just wanted to bring you all up to date so you didn’t think I’d fallen off the earth. We are fine, just trying to keep away from the adolescent billy goat in his quest to breed everything in sight. What’s next, the trees?
I promise to get some pictures of the progress on the barn. It’s pretty impressive. Thanks for stopping by!
Conversation overheard in the barn last night:
Moose: it feels GOOD to be nekkid
July: I got a little cut, now my face is all purple where I rubbed it on my cut (sniff, sniff)
Hans: Well, among the three of us, I’ve got a set – you other two look like GIRLS so you better watch out, because I’m the toughest!
June: hey, cut it out. I want to know what they DO with all that fiber after they put it in the bag
Ahh yes, it’s shearing time, and these little virgins had their first clip. They jumped around and carried on and were quite surprised to see themselves all shaved, so, Uncle Frankie had to tell them the facts of life. Yes, virginia, that wench sells the shirt right off your back. They use that fur to make YARN so people can knit it all together and make sweaters. really. seriously. why don’t they just grow their own fiber like us?
Of course Geronimo, the horndog, had to make sure the girls were all the same girls, because, gee, he mighta missed somebody (NOT).
Nigel was not amused when Daisy came home naked. He kept beating on her to the point where wench had to referee the grain time. That’ll teach her. Nigel is a once a year sheep, Daisy gets sheared twice because she is awesome and grows so much fleece.
Soon, all of our coats will go to Echoview Fiber Mill down in Weaverville, NC to be made into products like rovings and yarns and then those will get sold and the money will buy our hay for next year and the cycle continues. Ahh, the circle of life.
As always, thanks for reading Frankly speaking. Wench and builders kids are all coming today, so we’ll have some great new pics!
and so, your spokesgoat is looking for other things to do. As you all know, I have no role in the breeding around here, and that is why I am such a good Chief Executive Goat. No hormones to cloud my decision making. SO, I thought I’d share a post with y’all to bring you up to date.
Geronimo is getting a little stinky; he takes his job seriously and the girls seem to like him, too. I don’t concern myself with such things until the babies start coming, then I have just so much to do around here. Job security I suppose. In any event…
Recently, we have had some changes. Pinky and Gary went to live with our friend Charlotte; and the three boys born this year have now found a home. Moose, July and Hans will be moving to Pilot Mountain NC to live with a very nice fiber artist who I interviewed yesterday. They will be going to the doctor for their snip snips, and the shearing team will do their thing, and then in November we’ll be saying adieu. I’ll be sure to get some pictures. Here are two of those boys hanging out by the barn.
Builder is building, the roof is on now and I’ll get some pictures later on this week; yesterday momma bear came to see us with her cub; but she didn’t come in the barn, was just passing through. No pictures of that.
Wench has been readying the rabbits for the big convention in October. Hopefully we’ll get some nice comments. Probably two or three french angoras, one or two satin angoras and one American Chin will go represent the Mountain Top in Harrisburg. Wench has also been attending some fiber fairs, selling the shirt off my back because she does that sort of thing. We were lucky to receive a photo this week of the artwork made with our products. Just look at this basket made with our rug yarn by talented artist Karen Carney
Here’s the litter of Satin Angoras, first ones born here….. that chin buck is a keeper. Builder named him Skeeter, but we need to come up with something a little more regal for this guy:
ok, that’s the quick news. I know no post would be complete without a picture of my lovely face, and so, I say… thanks for reading Frankly speaking:
Ok, so here it is AUGUST the 16th. I can’t believe it. Where did the summer go? oh, wait. we didn’t really HAVE summer here, just Monsoon Season! Good thing we live on a mountain top. We have had ten times the normal amount of rain so far this summer. Builder, of course has been building, but not an ark (although that might be a good thing actually).
We have had a lot happening here. We have experienced some real heartache here – first we lost our 22 year old cat Eve. If I may indulge myself a tad, no one ever eulogizes an animal, so let me start:
Eve Maguire Johnson Clemens, arrived to live with wench as a kitten, after being rescued by that Maguire guy I never met. By the time wench went to live with her dad (the first Clem), Eve was expecting. She had two kittens who did not live, but adopted two abandoned kittens thereafter. Eve loved to hunt. and sleep. and eat, especially 9 lives cat food and Hollywood Stars liver treats for dogs (and special cats). Eve lived first in Verona, then Rome, then Lowville and then Ennice, NC. She loved her family and was a good kitty. She was predeceased by Tigger, her friend and companion, and many other kitties and dogs. She left to cross the rainbow bridge at the age of 22, a good life for a cat.
Then we lost our girlfriend Rapunzel.
Rapunzel Johnson Clemens was rescued by wench as a pup in 1999. It was love at first sight all the way around, with Dan and wench and punzie. Punzie was a party girl and loved when Dan had a party at the house, especially when Rome PD showed up. Punzie also loved Emily White who lived next door, and she and Emily would have conversations through the hedges when Em was just a little girl. Punzie loved to hunt, too and would put a muskrat UP A TREE and then wait there all day for it to come down. Once she killed a guinea when she channeled her inner wolf, and got hollered at. She never did that again. Punzie loved to eat Mary Kay hand creme when she was a puppy, only trying to help wench’s business so she’d have to place another order. She was predeceased by Lizzie, who I vaguely remember, and Eve, her favorite cat. I think Eve was waiting for Punzie to cross over that rainbow bridge together. There is so much more to say about Rapunzel, she was such a great dog, but, I just can’t talk about it that much. We miss her a lot. She was 15 when she passed away, a shadow of her former self, but loved so much.
In between, our own Glory went to the rainbow bridge as well. She was fine one day, sic the next. Doctor said it was listeriosis which is a bacterial thing (like tetanus) in the ground. Some goats are fine with it, some aren’t. We didn’t want her to suffer, so made the hard decision. Her brother Gary was broken hearted.
To cheer Gary up, we sent him on a mission. He and his full sister Pinky went to Pennsylvania to live with our friend Charlotte. Gary is very protective of Pinks, so that’s a good job for him. We wish them godspeed, and good fiberations for Charlotte!
so, enough sad. Now on to the building part. Here is the progress of the building – in between raindrops that builder gets a lot done in a day!
as you can see it’s coming right along…
so, enough about that. We have baby bunnies! A litter of Satin angoras, a litter of French angoras and three bunnies from Layla x Moonshadow. These guys are keepers – and so I present:
of course anyone who grew up with wench knows WHY she would name a blue point Kerry Megan – it’s Irish, first of all, and Kerry Turner and Megan Miller were like the coolest people in Blue Point who were Irish and not Italian… ok, so it gets complicated. hahahah
In any event, rabbits come and rabbits go, but goats go on forever. and we have the cutest goats.
how can you ask for cuter than that?
and then, we also have TALENTED goats. How many goats can do the goat dance?
and then of course there is me. Frankie. I am the CEG and spokes goat of Mountain Top Fibers. I am thinking of writing a series of children’s books, explaining life as I see it. The working title of the first book is Frankly speaking… corn doesn’t grow in a can! what do you think,…. good idea?
and thanks for reading Frankly speaking!
As I previously reported, we are currently under expansion here on the Mountain Top. Builder has been busy doing what he loves to do – build. I posted this picture last week:
and so, about a week later and viola!:
this will be the area for the rabbit does. Underneath this area is the man cave:
I hope to post progress once a week here so you can follow what is going on. In the meantime, builder continues to drop trees so that he doesn’t run out of lumber. Some of these guys are pretty big, so he calls his friend Junior Bear (who is beginning to be my favorite visitor… every time he visits we get tree tops) and they dump a few over so builder has wood, we have food and the pasture has sunshine in order to grow grass
Wench, in the meantime, is busy making rabbit cages to hold fryers… 11′ long, with five cages in each section. The area where we are now will be taken over by these cages and we’ll move into the cool basement where the does are now. Confused? join the club. I can’t keep up with these two – always changing things, building stuff, moving it around, yada yada — owell, I’m glad I’m a goat and all I have to do is be awesome.
ok, gotta jet – there are trees down! Thanks for reading Frankly speaking – see you next week!
Well, after about a month of rain, it seems we are down to about every other day showers. I was about to ask builder to make an ARK for us, but now it doesn’t look as though we’ll need it – not yet anyway.
I have posted here before about food, and how important it is to a goat. This –
makes a goat unhappy.
This – (look closely, you can see the wagon right between the studio and the hot tub) makes a goat VERY happy.
Many thanks to Robbie Killion and his awesome crew who made hay for us again this year and delivered it so we wouldn’t starve to death. I am sure you were all concerned that I was getting enough to eat. Anyway, we appreciate his efforts in getting us hay in between the rain. I hear the rest of the stash will arrive tonight if the weather is nice.
In the meantime, there has been a lot going on here lately. Wench finally got off her butt and did a couple of craft shows and farmers markets. The reception has been warm and the products well received, so it’s onward and upward in the fiber business.
In keeping with the no-nonsense journalistic reporting you’ve come to expect from me, I must tell you that we had a natural disaster occur in the rabbitry. None of the Angoras were affected, just the chins, but we ended up losing three very valuable brood does, one adolescent buck and several baby rabbits. Study, vet consultation and necropsy revealed we had a cocci problem, so that has now been corrected and we are back in action. Everyone is feeling just fine, and all of the rabbits have received a new vaccination called BunnyVac which will protect them from pasturella. They also are getting Ivomectin every three months as a preventative treatment and Corrid in their water twice a year. We never had a protocol for the rabbits insofar as deworming goes because we never had a problem. This has been a wake-up call and we are grateful to be on track, and will remember the sacrifice made by Harmony, Pepper, Anne Hibbins and RocketMan on the next bunny memorial day. Wench is hoping to get a microscope soon so she can get up close and personal with all of our poop and know how to deal with whatever might ail us.
Speaking of aliments, little Gracie developed pneumonia last week. She had a high temperature and we were all very worried, but thanks once again to the folks at Twin Oaks Vet Hospital, she’s right as rain and feeling frisky again. They are so wonderful there. And they all think we are cute. Which we are. But I’m the cutest, right?
Anyway, back to the news. So, you know how the builder loves to build, right? and You know how much fun he’s been having making lumber with his new toy the sawmill, right? Well, this is a recipe for fun, and so….. it’s a lumber yard around here:
This will be a two story “porch” which will be open-air and will house brood does for our rabbit operation. We should be able to add another 50 to 75 does. YOWZA. Wench will have a full time job just shoveling the poop.
anyway, builder hopes to be “in” by winter. He’s an ambitious guy. but we knew that. I hear that when the rabbits move upstairs, new goat quarters will be made in the main area of the barn, downstairs where the does are now. Never a dull moment around here. It is closer to the hay chute, so it’s ok with me.
Now that I’ve brought you up-to-date on the do-ins around here, I suppose you want some pictures of the babies, huh?
here you go -
Welcome to our newest French Angora buck -
He has already made a litter with CT Layla (one blue, one tort and one white); and has moved Nimbus to his harem this week, so we’ll see what happens there..
Speaking of baby rabbits, may I introduce
ok, so that’s about all the news. We are looking forward to seeing Deb Willis this week, she’ll be coming for a visit on Wednesday. We saw Aunt Pat and Cousin Andrea for about a minute a couple of weeks ago, and Cousin Andrea made the observation that wench was certainly her father’s daughter. Truer words were never spoken. She misses her dad. Goats don’t miss their dads. We sometimes don’t even know our dads – but that makes it easy on father’s day – don’t have to get a card. hahahahah
Anywho – thanks for reading Frankly speaking!