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Saturday, September 5, 2009

More Iowa State Fair!!

I promised I would finish out writing about the state fair, and so I shall, in just a few moments! I've been so busy this past week. Now that school is back in session, I have classes Monday through Wednesday, but still work full time and have the farm to keep me busy. It's enough to make my head spin.

In addition, we've been dealing with an unpleasant situation in the form of a completely irresponsible woman who bought Kelly's house on contract nearly two years ago. She's been delinquent with her payments most of the time in the past two years, and we've had to serve her on numerous occasions to get payments out of her. We finally served her for the last time just over a month ago, because she owed house payments since April as well as the balloon payment owed on the house due September 1. We knew she wouldn't come up with the money, so we've been waiting for the 30 day service to run. Of course, she didn't come up with the money, and she didn't move out either. So now, we are waiting for a forced eviction notice to run, which means she has to be out by Wednesday or the Sheriff comes and gets her out. I can't tell you how desperate we are to re-sell his house (and NOT on contract this time!!) In particular, I personally am very tired of paying two mortgages, since Kelly has been out of work and not able to pay for it. One mortgage is quite enough. Let's hope we can sell it quickly, but in this economy, who knows...

Still, I don't want to be grumpy for the entire blog post, so let's go back to the fair!! Last I left you, we had visited the rabbits. After that, we wandered past the chain saw carver doing his demonstration...
...and back to....you guessed it....the llamas!! The showmanship competition was occurring. That is where you put your llama through the obstacle course and it's not the llama itself (i.e. conformation, etc) that is being judged - it's your ability to show your llama to the judge and have it complete the tasks. Tasks included things such as fancy sparkly streamers to be walked through...
...hula hoops to be put over your llama and then removed - one off each end....
...walking your llama through a water feature...
...and making your llama feel completely humiliated by putting a silly headband on it with antennae type things wobbling about. How embarrassing.
Not to be missed, the famous "take your llama for a walk under the umbrella" move (this was really distressing for some llamas - they don't seem to like umbrellas)...
...the lady on the lawn chair test - she has to pet the llama and the llama has to remain comfortable and quiet...
...the put-the-llama-in-the-trailer (without getting in yourself) test...
...rapidly followed by the "get your llama out of the trailer" move.
We noticed that the taller llamas had trouble with the hoops (understandably). This llama in particularly was quite lovely, and looked like she was wearing culottes.
But, eventually, it was time to move on from the llamas, so we wandered across to the "Avenue of Breeds" where they have various breeds of livestock on show. The variety is remarkable!
I was quite enamoured with these miniature Zebu cattle. So cute! And only about 2 feet tall at the shoulders! I could even picture myself milking one of those!
Here we also found Jacob sheep, just like ours, except these were much bigger!
There was a Texel sheep that I rather liked...
...and an Old English Southdown, commonly known as a baby doll sheep.
A very cute baby alpaca (they are called crias just like baby llamas) was eating some hay.
We visited with a very sweet LaMancha goat (yes, they do have very tiny, almost non-existent ears).
There was a silky fainting goat who was not interested in fainting and was much more interested in stealing the hay from the goat next door.
There were also some very cute angora goats.
In the "not-so-cute-but-interesting" category, there was an ostrich! Wow, they are huge!
This one was very interested in stealing Kelly's hat, and kept getting really close! Lovely eyelashes!
Can I just point out....they have very prehistoric looking feet. Quite intimidating and evocative of a velociraptor or something akin to it.
Moving right along, we found the belted Galloway cattle...

...and the mysterious Gelbvieh cattle (how do you pronounce that anyway?) who, according to their sign were supposed to be "golden red w. dark features" but these look...well...black!There were so many breeds and beautiful animals - I couldn't take pictures of all of them. I did take one of this lovely American Cream Draft horse.
It reminded me of some of the fancy horses we'd seen earlier in the day trotting by while we watched the llamas.
On our way out, we saw the....
...and by that time, we pretty much felt like this!So we went home to rest!








7 comments:

IsobelleGoLightly said...

What fun! I want to come to Iowa next year to see all of the interesting things...well...maybe not that HUGE piggie. He might be fun to jump on though.

knithound brooklyn said...

Fascinating array of animals! Looks like fun.

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

I've been a landlord, depending on the tenants, found out it can be the easiest job in the world or the most trying. Very difficult when they are not paying and you can't get 'em out of the house.

The fair looked like fun, we may go to the NC Fair late Oct.

Mom L said...

Now I know I'll go to the Iowa fair next year! What delightful creatures to visit - you found some beauties.

I'm so very sorry about the house - I hope you can resolve it soon.

Nancy

Michelle said...

Nasty business about the house; sorry! I like the Avenue of Breeds; what a fun idea! We went back to the fair today without our son and had a DATE. Got to see new things and will have another entry on the Oregon State Fair as well. Oh, and that cattle breed is pronounced "gelb-vee."

Flartus said...

As busy as I've been lately, I've been thinking about you with school, work & farm, and still can't fathom how you do it. Now with tenant/mortgage issues, too?? Bleah!

I would beeline for the Avenue of Breeds! So cool; wish I could see them all in person. There's a small herd down the road from us of the Belted Galloway cattle; I call them Oreo Cows.

Miss Chef and I are thinking about going to the NC State Fair...maybe we'll meet Joanna there??

Apifera Farm said...

Love that Buddy! Now that's a pig! I miss my old Minn fair so much...ah well. It was fun to seee this one. And I hope the house deal is over sooner than later- that's stressful I had to carry two mortgages due to undorseen retrieval by the buyer when I first moved to Portland - stressful with all caps. So, I feel for you. Hang in there!