Morning Chores

My husband is gone this week, so I’m doing double duty while he’s away, his work and mine. Along with shipping orders and a number of other things that he normally takes care of, I’m doing the morning chores. I should rephrase this … I get to do the morning chores! There are definitely days I’d trade the time I sit in front of the computer a good share of the day, for the stress relieving, sometimes down and dirty, tasks of caring for our animals.

Alpacas Eating

The squeaky wheel gets the grease is a phrase used to convey the idea that the most noticeable (or loudest) problems are the ones most likely to get attention, and that’s true when it comes to our Angora goats. Quieting the bleating of our three goats, Mike, Ike, and Lola comes first. They act like they are starving, and I can hardly get the feed in the tubs as they push each other out of the way. Not very mannerly.

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Thursdays in the Alpaca Barn

Thursday is my day in the alpaca barn, my turn to do farm chores.  Of course chores get done every day, but Thursday is my day, and today I think the alpacas are excited to see me!

When we first had alpacas, I did all the chores.  My husband was busy working a real job.  Years passed, life happened, and Matt found himself with time to do farm chores.  We took turns for awhile but before long, he was doing them every day.  This freed me up to develop and grow our alpaca business, process fiber, run the store, teach classes, work on the website, crochet, knit, spin, felt, weave.   It worked, for awhile.  He found that there just really isn’t much  stress in the barn, and that was very appealing to him.  I found that I missed caring for the alpacas.  So we’ve made some changes and now Thursday is my day … and I am loving it!

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Family Business Starts Them Young

 I couldn’t resist posting pictures of my grandson!  That’s what grandmas do, right?

Taken a year ago at this time, I ran across these this morning and they made me smile.

Spending the day with his dad, Clayton was “helping” on a fencing job at our farm.

So much like his father, my grandson Clayton is already learning the ropes!

He was consoled by his Papa after getting a “boo-boo”.

Matt, Aaron, Clayton, and Adam Petty

 

Our family is so blessed that my two sons and husband have an opportunity to work together in a family business.

 In Ohio and need hay or fencing?  Call Petty Farms!

Petty Farms

Hay Sales, Square Baling,  & Custom Fencing

Spring Break and Grandchildren

Keandre’ and Zavier, our eleven and six year old grandchildren, couldn’t wait, were coming out of their skin excited, to come help Papa on the alpaca farm yesterday.

Keandre', Zavier, Papa

I don’t think they had any idea what they were in for.  My husband wasn’t sure what they would be able to do, would be willing to do, or how long they would hold out.  They started by picking up rocks out of the fields that had been plowed in the Fall, in preparation for planting hay this Spring.

Keandre' Driving 4-Wheeler

The incentive for Keandre’, because he is the older of the two and with age comes privilege, was getting to drive the 4-wheeler and pull a trailer behind it!   My husband drove the skid-steer and Zavier rode on his lap.   Of course there was lots of time spent bending over and picking up rocks filling the trailer and bucket on the skid-steer, not a real fun job.  For two young boys, driving and riding on the equipment seemed to make it all worth it!  They picked up lots of rocks and made many trips to the rock pile to dump their loads.   Zavier found two golf balls and you would have thought he had won the lottery!  Keandre’ found a horse shoe which was also pretty special!

Zavier and Papa on Skid-steer

When they had gotten most of the big rocks up so they wouldn’t be causing damage when it’s time to cut hay, my husband let Zavier drive the skid-steer.  Still on Papa’s lap, Matt told him to pretend he was playing a video game … and that made sense.  A little jerky at first, he got the hang of it!

Winter's Worth of Manure in Alpaca Barn

The next job was to clean a winter’s worth of hay and manure out of the alpaca barn.  Zavier rode on my husband’s lap, holding his nose as they drove into the barn and picked up the first scoop of the very smelly, wet, nasty, yucky stuff.  He could not stifle his disgust as he exclaimed “it stinks in here!”  It was clear that was not a job the boys were interested in helping with.

Sizing Up The Situation

Matt asked Zavier if he would rather vacuum the pastures.  He would have said yes to most anything just to get out of that barn!

Alpaca Beans

Keandre' on 4-Wheeler

Matt hooked up the pasture vac to the 4-wheeler which Keandre’ was not about to lose control over, as that had become HIS job.

Hooking Up the Pasture Vac

Instructions were given.

Zavier Running Pasture Vac

Zavier was in charge of vacuuming up the alpaca beans and Keandre’ moved their operation as needed.

Zavier Running Pasture Vac

They worked at cleaning pastures for quite awhile and did a good job.

 Zavier Is Tired

Finally Zavier was tired.  They hung in there longer than I thought they might.  My husband gave them a little money, wanting them to know that hard work does not go unrewarded, then took them home.

They could hardly stop talking as they shared with their parents all they had gotten to do that day.  I was proud of my husband for taking the time to spend with his grandchildren, not wanting to get so much done, as much as just sharing some life experiences with them.  When they go back to school next week and are asked to share what they did over Spring Break, I think it’s quite possible that they might mention their day at Nana and Papa’s alpaca farm.  I don’t know that it was the highlight of their Spring Break, but it might have been.

We Have Moved

To any of you that tried to find us on Fall Farm Days and couldn’t, we apologize.  For those of you that I was unable to notify, we have moved!  Changing our address was one thing.  Changing our address on the web in all the various places we are listed, was quite another.  It may still be wrong in some places and I am sorry for any confusion.

Alpaca Meadows Has Moved

So here is our NEW address …

Matt and Julie Petty; 1200 Rock Road; Mansfield, Ohio
Get the driving directions here.

New House

We have a smaller house, which is easier to keep up with, and less stuff
because there just wasn’t room for all we had and we were forced to clean out before we moved.  Trust me, that was a very good thing, cleansing even…

Hay Field at Alpaca Meadows

We have more acreage, room to add more pastures and grow our own hay

Woods at Alpaca Meadows

and a beautiful woods with paths for walking.

Farm Store at Alpaca Meadows

The Farm Store and my studio is nearby so I don’t have far to go to work.

Dogs and Alpacas at Alpaca Meadows

Our alpacas are close to the house which allows us to enjoy them that much more!  We have alpacas for sale and our specialty is starting new farms.  If raising alpacas is something you think you might enjoy, give us a call, and we’ll talk alpacas!

Flowers at Alpaca Meadows

We offer  Farm Tours and The Farm Store is open most Saturdays from 12pm-5pm.  Occasionally, Matt and I are both gone so checking our calendar or calling ahead is always best.

More Flowers at Alpaca Meadows

Do come see us if you are nearby!  And again, my apologies for anyone that felt they were on a wild goose chase last weekend!

Alpaca Farm Tour – Harmony House

Kids from Harmony House

A group of children from Harmony House came to visit our farm.  It is not unusual to have kids come on our tours that have never even been on a farm, let alone an alpaca farm.  They enjoy the sights, the sounds, the smells, getting up close to an alpaca … experiences they have never had before.  We enjoy providing that experience for them and try to make our tours fun, yet educational.

Alpacas Exploring the Pasture at Alpaca Meadows

When groups of adults come visit, we spend time talking about alpacas, their history, their care, what they are used for, the business, and there are lots of questions.  With kids we’ve learned it is quite different and we need to keep them moving!  We took our young group into the pasture, the alpacas stopped what they were doing and all came across the pasture to see their new visitors, the timing was perfect.  Shy, but curious, they came very close and the kids loved it!

Alpaca Farm Tours at Alpaca Meadows

Most of the herd kept out of arm’s reach.  Melody and Ariella were especially friendly, and enjoyed being petted and loved on.  We hadn’t fed yet, so the group got to see what feeding time is all about.  It was a hot day so we got out the garden house and sprayed alpaca bellies which they all love.  The youngest in the group got stung by a wasp and that brought tears, but mixing some baking soda and water into a paste and putting it on the sting, soon calmed him and he seemed to enjoy the rest of the tour.

Alpaca Finger Puppets

The kids were allowed to each choose an alpaca finger puppet in the Farm Store.  They watched a spinning demonstration, and each got a turn carding some alpaca fiber which was a big hit.  They seemed to have fun, and I think they probably learned something while they were here.

Training Day

Blue Skies at Alpaca Meadows

What a beautiful Sunday morning in Ohio…started out cloudy after rain during the night…then blue skies, sunshine, and a very pleasant temperature.  I decided to do some work with our babies this morning before it got too hot.

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Alpaca Farm Tours

Have you always wanted to visit an alpaca farm?  Get up close and personal with an alpaca?  Feel their wonderful fiber?  Learn more about them?

Schedule an Alpaca Farm Tour for your school, your scout trip, 4-H Club, civic organization, Garden Club, Mother’s Club, guild, family, or group of friends. Meet our alpacas and learn about their history, their care, their habits, their sounds, their fiber, see first hand the magic of alpacas!

The tour is educational but fun and lasts about an hour.  It is a short walk around our family farm to meet the boys, the girls, and the little ones. Find out how where alpacas come from and how they are used.  If we haven’t done chores yet, you can help us feed!  If it’s a hot day you can help us hose bellies!  The tour concludes in our fiber studio where you will see all types of products made from alpaca fiber. We highlight the yarns made from our alpacas. We will spend time in the fiber studio where you will see all the different products made from alpaca fiber. Depending on the age and interests of the group, you might want to see a carding or spinning demonstration, or walk alpacas!  Be sure to bring your camera!  Plan a little extra time to visit The Farm Store while you are here.  Take home a souvenir, or some beautiful alpaca yarn, or something soft and warm made from alpaca.

Farm Tours are $5 per person.  Children under four are always free!

Camelid Deliveries

We do have plenty of room for a bus or RV, or whatever, to park and get turned around.

Be sure to dress for the weather, uneven terrain, and depending on the time of year, sometimes mud.
Contact us
or give us a call at (419) 529-8152 to schedule a Farm Tour.

NEW – Add a Mini Felting Class to your Farm Tour!

Choose from:

Wet Felting a Piece of Felt
Wet Felting Soap
Wet Felting a Flower
Needle Felting a Simple 3-D Project such as a Pumpkin or Frog
Needle Felting in Cookie Cutters

Add $10 per person

 

*Sorry, we are not handicap accessible and do not have public restrooms.

Winter At Alpaca Meadows

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Home is where the heart is.
More Winter!, originally uploaded by AlpacaLady.

Alpaca Meadows
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