Off to the field this morning to start the fencing for the yard, firstly we had a visit from my parents so good excuse to stop for coffee. Just got started when a friend turned up baring homemade buns, so another coffee stop was in order. Steve then managed to get the posts in while friend and I picked sloes so I could have a go at making some sloe gin for christmas. For lunch we had been invited to the pub my daughter helps run with her boyfriend, so lovely carvery was enjoyed by all. On the way home we stopped of to see Tania & Chick who are part of the Dartmoor Alliance, good chance to talk alpaca and to see their newest cria, a little black girl called Ruby Tuesday. Then home via Widecombe in the moor, I still think that the view from Widecombe hill is one of the best on Dartmoor
First clear weekend we have had for ages, if it was'nt for F&M we would have had walks booked and we could have given the Llamas a good bit of exercise. As it was we did the routine checks on the animals, body scores, check for mites etc. As we are short of grass we let the Llamas and male Alpacas graze the track along the top of the fields so they had a good munch on the blackberries, hawthorn as well as some lush grass. While they were doing that we went home and did some long overdue clearing out of office files etc. How we ever managed to collect so much junk in such a short while is beyond me. Tomorrow we may start the fencing for the yard around our field shelter, oh what fun.
After several reminders I have now got something to add to my diary, Things have slowed down a bit, so not much to write about at the moment. Last night we had a meeting with our fellow members of the Dartmoor Alliance mainly as a de-briefing session for the Open day. General opinion was that the day was a huge success and we will be repeating it again next year, the weekend following Widecombe fair seemed to be favorite, a lot of work in one week, but then it is over and done with in one go.
We raised more than £150 for WAWA by way of donations and a raffle. The treasure hunt seemed to have been a hit with the children and they now know all about Alpacas and Llamas.
We also had a group visit yesterday afternoon for a taster session, the weather was as usual wet and windy, so we could not give the boys the full treatment, grooming and tacked up, but everyone seem to enjoy themselves anyway.
Our Open day was a great success, we estimated approx 300 people attended, which considering the Foot & Mouth situation we consider to be a good result. We sold lots of Alpaca products and there was allot of genuine interest in the animals. Overall it was a very satisfactory day.
It seems to take a lot less time to take down the equipment than it took to go up, so once we had finished we all sat down for a few drinks and a extremely good authentic Sri Lankan curry. We will just have to wait and see if we generate any sales for the Dartmoor Alliance through this event. We are thinking that this should be an annual event, although Liz is'nt to sure.
We had a interview with our local radio station this morning, Tony Beard who is a near neighbour does a country diary slot and is going to talk about the Alpacas and Llamas as well as plug the open day. Then home to cook a couple of hundred scones, a few cakes etc for Saturday.
Devastating news about Foot & Mouth, We were so lucky that we had the fair yesterday and not today, we could have been stuck there until DEFRA decide we could move.
We now have to cancel the walks we have just rearranged after the last outbreak. This year really has been the summer from hell.
After much discussion we have decided to go ahead with our open day on Saturday, we will have to go without the Llamas, but we think it will still be a good day and we will ensure that our biosecurity is in place
Widecombe Fair was a great success, we didn't have time to look around as there was a constant stream of visitors to the stand and it was three deep around the pen with the Llamas and Alpacas in. We sold lots of fleece and knitwear as well as socks and wool. We also had a lot of interest in our animals, which we hope will lead to some sales. Lots of interest in the LLama walks as well.
Gave the females who have returned from Stud the once over this morning, nail trims, check for mites and give a routine dose of Eprinex. It was so hot today, this is probably due to the fact that the school holidays have now finished and alot of visitors have gone home, so the weather has now improved. We took the Llamas for a walk to Mel Tor, the first proper walk out since the resrictions have been lifted. Then a trip to Mole valley for Steve to update his wardrobe someting which happens very rarely,
Absolutely amazed to have woken up without a headache considering how much wine I drank last night and the meal was really nice. It was good to just relax and chat for a change.
With Widecombe Fair less than a week away now, panic has set in, Stock to price, posters & flyers to print, So the next few days are going to be hectic. Out for dinner tonight so at least I don't have to cook.
After an very early start our girls have been delivered to the Stud farm, we then went on to the open day at UK Llamas. It was absolutely amazing to see how many people came to see the Llamas, ask questions and show genuine interest in them. A great many teas, coffees and cakes were consumed during the day and I am sure that a lot of money was raised for WAWA. I just hope we have such a successful day on our open day later this month.
May, June, July