Tuesday, May 10, 2011

geekING out in maryland

I have good news and bad news. Which do you want first??? Well, you don't actually get to answer, so I'll get the bad news over first--I forgot my camera this weekend. :( So no pictures from me, but I'll do my best to search online to find some good ones (probably better than I would have taken anyway).

Ok, ok , that's over with so here's the good news--I don't think it would have been possible to cram more fiber fun into one festival. The Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival was even better than I could have imagined. We left Friday evening arriving in the DC area that night, spent a marathon day at the festival, and then the evening in DC eating really great food (more on that later) and seeing things like the White House (Obama didn't wave, I was disappointed). On Sunday, we had quick (but tasty) brunch, and headed home. The weekend was a whirlwind, but it was a blast! :)

Here are some quick takes of the festival:

There were so. many. people. I was shocked. I mean, anyone I told that I was going to a sheep and wool festival looked at me like I was from another planet. Apparently, there are lots of other people from that planet. They were all great too (except some of those pushy people with strollers, a stroller is not a license to shove!). Anyway, my favorite was this old man I sat down beside in the heat of the afternoon. We started talking and he was a history and civics teacher for years in Michigan. We talked about teaching and how it's changed, we talked about history, we talked about SB 5, women's roles in modern society, and the fact that even I am now getting old because I don't like modern music (That was his theory, once you start thinking the best music was from 10 to 20 years ago....you are getting old. We laughed). The guy knew everything. He had  a BA, two masters degrees, and PhD in history! I learned so much.

Lamb Gyros! Ok, I didn't actually eat one. The lines were too long and I had too much to do, but don't they look tasty?

I think this guy is called a Cotswold sheep (I might be wrong though). He was my favorite when I walked around the barns. He was extra soft, and how do you not love all that wool in his eyes?? All the shepherds were more than willing to talk about their animals. I wish I could say I remembered more of what they told me.

Vendors: there were tons! Selling everything from yarn, processed wool, unprocessed wool, spinning wheels, looms, needles, finished knitted products, felting supplies...you get the idea. I managed to actually not go broke while I was there. My favorite purchase is a 1200 yard skein (that's huge in case you were wondering) of kid mohair for just 30 bucks! It is white and soft and wonderful. You just want to bury your face into it and smell it's sheepy smell ( I realize how weird that is, but I love the smell of sheep) . It looks like this:

All in all--it was fabulous and I can't wait to do it again. Besides what is pictured, there were folk bands, Celtic music, TONS of food, sheep shearing competitions, herding dog demonstrations, auctions, and so, so, so much more!

I totally plan on going next year and I hope, that I by then, I will be in the market for knew spinning wheel! :) I fully plan on learning to spin this year.

 If you like knitting, crocheting, or any other fiber-related craft even a little, it's completely worth going to. The countdown to next year begins....now!

Image Credits: Because I forgot my camera, all images are sadly from Google Images. :(

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