We are studying Moses's "escape" to Midian and learning about how he became a shepherd. The unit that goes along with this story is about sheep & mammals.
I have to share this "God thing" with you. One of the suggested field trips was to visit a sheep farm. Now, this sounded like fun to me - but I had no idea how one goes about finding a sheep farm that would love to have a 6 and 3 yr old on their farm asking questions. And touching everything!
This past week, I emailed a friend from the Weaver list who has a"regular" farm and asked her - how would I find a sheep farm close to me? She contacted a friend of hers who is active in a spinner and weaver group - and guess what? This past weekend was Alpaca Farm Days! This is one weekend where alpaca farms all over the state open their ranches to whoever wants to come check it out.
So went went on a field trip to Lone Eagle Alapaca Farm. It was perfect! And wasn't it nice of God to start planning this awesome field trip for us WAY ahead of time? *wink*
I took Punkin and a friend of hers - let's call her Singer (she loves to sing and she's very gifted at it), and of course SnugBug. It was fascinating! There were several farms represented at this farm, so there were lots of alpacas. There was a baby cria (I learned a new word!) who had just been born the night before - she was adorable! She was in a stall in the barn, and the kids "ooo-ed" over her, and the mommy got between them and the baby and laid her ears back - she was being very protective and such a good mommy.
Can you believe I forgot my camera???? Grrr. :)
We learned about how they use alpaca fiber - it is softer and does not have lanolin as sheep's wool does, so it is naturally hypoallergenic. One lady had her "carder" there that they use to make all the fibers go in the same direction. She also had a spinning wheel and showed the kids how she made yarn from the fibers. Punkin and Singer soaked it up.
There were brownies there and that was SnugBug's favorite part. :)
I met a nice couple who has homeschoolers to their farm regularly and shows them all the steps from the animal to the sweater. She was so nice and taught me so much.
I may just have to have an alpaca farm someday. WeaverDad is vetoing that idea, but ..... man, were they cute! And everyone was so nice and friendly. We had a great day.