This week’s inspiration comes from a visit to the Long Island Livestock Co. in Yaphank, New York. The owner, Tabbethia Haubold-Magee, is the only person breeding and raising llamas on Long Island and travels up and down the east coast shearing sheep, llamas, and alpacas on other small hobby farms. You may have seen her booth at Stitches East, which is where I first came across her yarns. Here’s a brief but informative article about her company. She hosted an open farm day last week and my parents and cousin and I enjoyed meeting all of her animals.
That sheep was the friendliest sheep, ever. She came right up to me and practically started to doze while I scratched her chin for a good 10 min. So sweet! My parents got a real kick out of seeing all of the animals, especially since they only barely understand my fiber obsession. It was fun to see my dad getting into the tours. Did you know that unlike sheep who poop anywhere, llamas only poop in specified places? Now you do! (That was my dad’s favorite tidbit.)
I really loved that Elvis-looking llama.
Tabbethia opened her home to us as well, providing hot cocoa and cider and other refreshments and allowing us to play with her adorable little puppy and pet pig. And finally, we did a little shopping in the store below her home.
On the left is 6 oz. of alpaca mixed with nylon sparkle that my mom wants me to spin into yarn for her. On the right is a gorgeous alpaca/merino blend mixed with some turquoise sparkly stuff that I’ve been eying at different festivals and finally purchased. Tabbethia also carries amazing, lanolin-based skincare products, which you can purchase from her website. My favorite is the honey almond body butter, which will hopefully be added to the site soon after the redesign is finished.
In short, I’m completely inspired by (and more than a little jealous of) Tabbethia’s work: raising animals, shearing them, working with local wool cooperatives, creating natural skin-care products, promoting animal and fiber education, traveling to all sorts of fiber festivals, and producing beautiful fibers and yarns.
Do you have a favorite small farm or local yarn producer? What’s been inspiring you lately? Feel free to link to your own post in the comments and share!