Friday, February 15, 2013

::Lily 4H - year one::

I have been waiting nine years to finally get the chance to say...


Quinn was not in to it. 

She looks like she is barely controlling herself from grabbing that baby and taking off. 
Love love love love 4H.

I did 10 years of 4H, but I only did horse and pony.  I didn't even know that doing any other projects was an option.  When Emma started 4H I was super excited to learn all the ins and outs.  I did the animal related projects with her and her mom did the other projects.  (Sewing, foods, etc.)  I'm nervous now to be in charge.  I'm lucky to have Jenni (Emma's mom) to help me, but I'm still nervous.  Josh and Jenni both told me to not let Lily sign up for too many projects.  Usually I really do listen to Josh, and I take Jenni's advice seriously.  But I just didn't this time.  

In early February our county has a 4H project fair.  They set up tables and the kids go around and talk to other kids or parents about all the different projects.  I have been prepping Lily into doing the Bee Keeping project for the last year, she didn't even want to go to the table and talk about it.  I let her pass on by.  (Why can't there be adult 4h?)  All I did was read some of the titles for her and let her decide is she was interested.  It was so sweet to watch her ask her kid related questions, "Do girls do this project?" -for electrical.  "Do I have to sell my lamb for meat?" -yes.   "Can we eat my project ducks eggs?"  She thought she might have to save all the eggs for the year to show the judge.  

When we went to the office to pick up all the workbooks that go with the projects the lady said to me, "You are going to be one very busy mother this year!  And with two little boys!  I hope you don't work too."  Gulp.  That made me pretty nervous.  But I feel confident.  We got this.  We can do it.  We just have to get started now. 

Here is what she signed up for:
 All Other Crafts - Ceramics = She goes to a local studio and paints a premade ceramic item of her choice.  I am going to take her to the studio a few times, but I will basically stay out of this one.  She will enjoy it.  We did a mini version of this last year.  The studio is locally owned and is a really neat place.  I plan for her to have this one done before school even gets out.
Cake Making - they get a foam form, ice it, and decorate it.  I did this one with Shealyn (Josh's exwife's boyfriends daughter and a good friend).  She did so well she went to state.  The problem with this one is that is has to be done pretty close to fair.  But we will practice a few times and have a good idea in line before we make the real one.  
Collections - the hoarder in Lily likes this one.  She picks any item and does a display on it.  Like a rock collection labeled and displayed.  We can have this one done pretty quick too.  Once she picks what she wants to collect.  
Electric - they make a little flip switch circuit.  It looks really cute.  And my daughter is the one that wants to paint the base rainbow.  We can have this one done early too. 
Our Environment - this is a project were you take something that would have been thrown out and make it into a usable item.  I am going to suggest a bottle bap wind chime, but we will see what she decides on.  This is one we can have done early for sure. 
Photography - They make a poster of 10 or so prints.  She wants to do black and white and a color one too.  She can have this one done early for sure. 
Sewing - the make a little pair of shorts.  She is going to do this one with her Grammy.  We can get this one done early too.  Which I think will be my most stressful one since I can't even turn a sewing machine on.  Right before fair they have a fashion show where the kids model the clothes they made.  
Woodworking - my Dad is a master wood worker.  Really talented.  I hope I can talk him into helping her with this.  A few sessions with him and we should be done nice and early.  

Animal Projects:
Llama/Alpaca Poster and Craft - The don't show these guys yet.  Maybe next year.  But this year they do a poster about Alpaca care and a wool related craft.  Lily has been totally pumped about this.  I have wanted an alpaca for years.  We even talked Emma into doing this one with us.  If they get enough interest this year the they will consider adding the animals to the shows next year.

 Poultry - This is our first year for this.  Lily wants to show a duck.  I have an order in for six Cayuga ducks.  They are GREEN!!!  They can not fly.  And they are an the National Livestock Breed Conservatory in the Threatened Category.  I love being a part of breeds that are uncommon.   Emma wants to show Silkie chickens.  I had an entire list of different breeds of chickens that I wanted to order.  But now both girls are talking about Silkie chickens.  So I think we will just buy some Silkie chickens and have some fun.  If you don't love a FLUFFY chicken than you are no fun.  I know nothing about showing poultry so we will just do the best we can.  

Rabbits - Emma had some great success with showing rabbits when she first started 4H.  We went to lots of shows and over the coarse of a few years we ended up with way too many rabbits.  Like 45.  It was insane.  Emma didn't want to show any more.  So we sold them off and gave up rabbits.  Now Emma wants to show.  I got in touch with one of my old rabbit friends.  I told Lily she could get one or maybe two.  Then after fair we would talk about how it all went and see if we wanted to do it again.  I don't ever want to get serious about it again.  Just a few rabbits for fair.  She wants to show Holland Lops.  Perfect. 

Sheep - Oh sheep.  I have been trying to talk Emma into this for years.  No buying.  But Lily was in from the start.  She almost backed out when I told her the market lamb gets sold at auction and sent for meat.  We came up with a compromise.  She raises a market lamb of a traditional breed that she sells at fair.  She also gets a Endangered Breed ewe of her choice to raise and love and maybe eventually breed if Lily likes raising the sheep.  After looking into the breeds she decided on a breed nicknamed Babydoll Sheep.  They are actually a very old breed of Southdowns sheep.  They are small and cute and friendly and round and hardy and are known to be very good at delivery their babies!  Sounds just about perfect after our horrible year with goats.  The Babydoll sheep can be pricey $350-500 each ewe, but I think I found an honest breeder who will cut us a 4H deal.  This breed is also known to have a very wide jaw which pulls their mouth into a permanent smile shape!!!! 

GOATS! - Crazy little Pygmy goats.  I love these little fatties.  Because of our 1/7 survival rate this year we are done with breeding our own.  Lets just invest in some quality stock instead of vet bills for the stuck babies.  But we will keep our little goat herd to 8 TOPS!  Six would be a better number.  But I hope even Quinn is going to be talked into showing these great little guys when its his turn.  You're never too studly for a Pygmy goat.   


  1. Hey daughter is taking an ag vet class in her middle school...taught by a vet. He said he only c-sections pigmy goats and the ones that carrie multiples have a huge rate of death at birth. He thought you faired well considering you attempted all natural births

  2. Please forgive my French dear friend, but you are "bat-shit crazy!" How in the world can you do all that?!? I'm scared to try one club... Will watch n learn from you. GOOD LUCK Supermom! xoxo
    ps - your birthday boys are freakin' adorable! Congrats!



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