Monday, July 23, 2007

Off the Beaten Path

Today, I made an unexpected side trip and a most pleasant discovery. I used to have occasion to travel this particular part of NH on a fairly regular basis, and I often drove by a sign for Riverslea Sheep Farm in Epping. "Wool," proclaims the sign, "Yarn." "Open." (How is it possible that I never took the bait before today??)

I had Boy #1 with me in the car, and because we had already spent all morning driving I said, "Hmm, guess you wouldn't be up for visiting a sheep farm..." Next thing you know, there we were. We were greeted by the owner, Liz, and her adorable standard poodle, Lily, who coincidentally (or not?) looks not unlike a very tall and cheeky lamb.

Great place, this: a whitewashed little nook between the house and barn. They had a little of everything: dyed roving, yarn, handknit clothes, gorgeous sheepskins, and little needle felted toys and other items. There was also food for sale, apparently; at some point I heard "shepherds pies in the freezer" but I was too distracted by all the fibery stuff at the time. (Note: kick self for missed opportunity.) Yarns: 2 and 3 ply wool, some handspun, some laceweight. Great colors. Of course we bought some, for more hats:

Because we can never have too many hats. The green is for the kid (his choice, but I love it too) and the grey is for dad.

Liz is this amazingly nice and helpful person. We felt so completely welcome in her shop. She explained lots of interesting things to my son, and listened to him, and was totally cool. He was smitten.

Just before we left, she talked about some boys she knew of that did needle felting in the car to keep busy. One look at the dollar bags of roving and, more importantly, the sharp, primitive, dangerous-looking needle, and he was sold. Here's what we picked:

We drove away all warm and fuzzily with the feeling of having had ourselves a most enjoyable little adventure. So if you find yourself in this neck of the woods, I would highly recommend stopping in at Riverslea. You'll be glad you did. I know I'll be back.

Postscript: Here's what the kid made in the car on the way home:

Fun! When Boy #2 got home from camp later today he found he also enjoyed stabbing a ball of roving with a sharp pin. Who knew? He even added his initial to his project; pics when I can find it!!


The_Add_Knitter said...

What a fun little jaunt! I love the green especially...

Kathy said...

What a great discovery! Love the yarn. I know nothing about needle felting, -- seems magical to me. Great job!