Time to Vote in Our 2012 Flock Giveaway! ***POLLS CLOSED***

My lovely friends, the time has come once again for you to watch all the videos  and vote in our 2012 Flock Giveaway! This is a very exciting time for us, but it’s also a big responsibility. When an animal comes to my farm, and especially when an animal is born on my farm, I consider them mine for life.

I owe these animals a lovely and peaceful life. Actually, I owe them much more than that, but a stress-free natural life is what I can give them.

I have screened all of this year’s applicants and they are terrific. I need your help to narrow the field. Please, please, please watch all the videos before voting! There are only four and they aren’t very long. I know you can vote without watching them, but I’m asking you not to.

***Please feel free to vote for your candidate, even to sing their praises in the comments, but tearing down other candidates will not be tolerated. This isn’t that kind of website, y’all; play nice.***

You can vote anytime between now and midnight EST, May, 5 2012. You may vote only once per day. Any participant engaging in unfair voting practices (voting by computer and the like) will be disqualified at my discretion.

Yup, I can tell when you cheat for your favorite. It’s not cool. I causes me to have to look through the votes and delete the egregious multiple votes. That makes me cranky, which makes me less…shall we say…disposed towards your candidate. Cut it out!


Audrey Morris

Sebette Hamill 

Anne Smith 

The Labens

Thank you for helping us make someone’s sheepy dreams come true.

[poll id=”8″]


  1. Oh my goodness – I’m SOOO excited to see my little video up there. It is such an incredible honor to be a part of this beautiful, beautiful thing that you do. I’m off to watch the other videos and see what other wonderful people share my dream! GOOD LUCK to all!!!

  2. Wow. No wonder you want to let us vote on the winner. How DOES one choose from these great people. I watched them all, but I’ll have to give some thought to the voting. Might have to watch ’em again! Maybe twice!

  3. I am so excited to have made the cut! I can’t wait to bring my flock home(heehee). It is going to be tough going with this competition.
    Loving the pictures of all the new babies, hope y’all are getting some rest in between birthings.

  4. Wow, what great candidates! It is going to be tricky to decide on a vote. I understand why you need our assistance.

  5. It’s so difficult to choose; what amazing entrants you have to this contest. And so many worthwhile and beautiful dreams in there.

  6. All wonderful candidates!

  7. Jane from Maryland

    April 26, 2012 at 9:13 am

    I want to personally thank each entrant for daring to live the small farm life! And sharing your vision with us. I wish you all rain and sun at the right times and in the right amounts, and I predict sheep in the future for each of you!!!

  8. Nice contest and contestants!

  9. Wow. I think you need to line ’em up and give each of them a flock, one a year for the next four years.

  10. I think It”s wonderful that that someone in there “middle age” like Sebette is wanting to get into raising sheep. I got started when I was 60 and you would”nt believe how it changed my life. I’m off the couch, active and loving my animals. Starting at the age when most people would be packing it in was such a wonderful change for me. Good luck to you Sebette and all the others. Who ever wins will be getting some wonderful little sheep.

  11. I found this really hard to do. One video I didnt even finish, I knew that wasnt the one; however, I am inpressed by all these folks who are doing what I wish I could. I had GREAT difficulty choosing between two videos. It almost made me cry to choose one over the other,as if mine were the final say…yeah right….but I took my vote very seriously. In the end I chose the one who seem to embody what JMF has started. BTW, all the awesome knitted stuff on your videos drove me nuts! Beautiful!

  12. What a wonderful idea! We’re voting for Sebette but frankly, each of the finalists sound like they would give this flock a good home.

  13. We’re so excited to have made it this far in the contest, and honored to be considered a potential home for a flock of Juniper Moon sheep. It’s been a long time since Jared and I first started saying to each other, “Hey, wouldn’t it be amazing if we could start a farm?” to now being so close to bringing home our animals.

    Thanks to Juniper Moon for this amazing opportunity! Thanks to all who watch the videos and support us and the other contestants in our dreams!

  14. Cool contest!

  15. Lorraine Orlando

    April 26, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    Good Luck..

  16. Wow. the amount of thought, research, and preparation that all these folks put into this is incredible. I think any of them would be deserving but I voted for just one to help you out :) Good luck!

  17. I’m not trying to vote more than once a day, I just find voting confusing.
    I want to be on the up and up for my canidate.

  18. I’m sure all the candidates will own fiber sheep/goats one day, even though there’s only one JMF starter flock give-away… they’re all winners! I’m happy to cast my vote and can’t wait for the final results!

  19. I’m hoping that Sabette’s dreams to show her family a better life while setting an example for others, comes true.

  20. Had to vote for Leah! (I’m a bit biased because our names are similar!)

    I love their plans for their farm – looks like a place I’d love to visit! Go Tolerably Rocky Farms! :)

  21. @Taleah – once we get other things going, we really want to have a couple of farmstay cabins because of the great experiences we have had in the past. So there’s hope for a visit! :)

  22. I am submitting my vote for Sebette Hamill

  23. Submitted my vote for the Labens! What a fabulous little farm! I love that they are raising their little boy around a small farm lifestyle. Lucky kid.

  24. Go Tolerably Rocky Farms!! I hope you win so your son can help care for the sheep!!!

  25. From the video of Audrey Morris, it is clear she is a practical, down-to-earth and well-organized person. I was impressed at her planning and research. I feel that she is well on her way to transition into a successful farmer as well as a dedicated sheep herder and wool maker. Already she is a talented and gifted knitter. She has a a tidy and well cared for farm ready for a flock of sheep. I am submitting my vote for Audrey Morris.

  26. I’ve been encouraging friends, family, and customers to come to the site and vote (and especially encouraging them to vote for Sebette as she is our friend and customer). I did not realize the directions were to vote once per day, assuming that one vote per person would be the norm! Well, hopefully we have time to catch up. But it’s a little frustrating to have that instruction not more prominently displayed.

    • Susan

      April 28, 2012 at 1:08 am

      Hey Elizabeth! I’m sorry you didn’t see the instructions but they are right there in the post. I’m not sure where else I could have put them?

  27. winston extavour

    April 28, 2012 at 12:21 am

    What I have just heard is tantamount to a successful doctoral thesis presentation by a highly committed student; my vote, hands down. the animals are lucky; they will be thrilled. I vote for Audrey.

  28. I have voted for Ms. Werble.

    Thank you.


    • Susan

      April 28, 2012 at 12:46 pm

      Please feel free to vote for your candidate, even to sing their praises in the comments, but tearing down other candidates will not be tolerated.

  29. Annie Bontrager

    April 28, 2012 at 11:04 am

    Leah: we wre so interested in hearing about your farm. Where are you? We still live near Canadaigua. Natalie is in Pueblo, CO and Martin at University of Wisconsin in Madison.

  30. My reasons for voting for the Labens are:
    I love their video!
    They demonstrate knowledge, a willingness to learn and work hard, and enthusiasm.
    The whole family is involved.
    Blessings to Juniper Moon Farm and best wishes to all the candidates.

  31. I am honored to be one of the candidates here and grateful to Susan for choosing to thin her flock in this way. I think that each of the finalists has come at this from their own particular angle and we all are blazing new trails for ourselves and finding ways to contribute to the “home grown” movement. No matter what happens here, I hope we will all have our own flock some day.

    Thank you to everyone who is taking the time to watch the videos and cast their vote.

  32. I wholeheartedly vote for the Labens!

  33. I am intimately connected with the farm and the family that Leah Laben grew up with in Upstate New York because it is where my father grew up and as a child, I spent summers there. Leah is the real thing. She is the reincarnation of my grandmother, who could grow anything, preserve anything, bake anything, and, if my grandmother knitted, knit anything.
    Leah and Jared will be excellent caretakers for this flock. They have Animal Husbandry in their genes. I have seen the patience that Leah’s father and grandfather has had towards their dairy cattle. That is the environment that Leah grew up in. Leah has the patience and knowledge to care for such a flock

  34. Nice videos. Tough choices. Great concept.

  35. Wow, Audrey! She definitely knows how to take care of a flock, and she’s definitely ready to get the sheep. Look, she even has that little sheep-dog all ready to help out! :)

  36. As a longtime friend of joey, audreys son, I have known Audrey to be a loving, caring person, who will wholeheartedly invest her time to the sheep and do what it takes to become a shepherd, as this is one of her dreams and she is a person who is very dedicated that is to me someone special that truly deserves this.

  37. John H. Witherwall IV

    April 29, 2012 at 10:07 pm

    Hands down, Audrey! She looks like she put the most time invested in the planning of her sheep, and even of the future of her knitting business. True fiberfarm feel from her!


    *clap* *clap* *CLAPCLAPCLAP*


    *clap* *clap* *CLAPCLAPCLAP*


    *clap* *clap* *CLAPCLAPCLAP*


    *clap* *clap* *CLAPCLAPCLAP*

  39. Well, I’m biased because I’m Leah’s big sister, but I think you should all know that I remember her wanting sheep from the time she was a tiny child. She and Jared definitely put a lot of thought into this, and I appreciate everyone who has voted for them.

    Best of luck to all the contestants, I hope you all have flocks of your own some day…

  40. Hey, Susan, what if both my husband and I are voting for the same person? Each day? And from the same IP address, of course. You don’t have to keep this posted in the comments, but is it considered cheating? We have both been voting, so if it is, let me know and we will limit it to one of us a day. Sorry if we messed anything up!

    • Susan

      April 29, 2012 at 11:42 pm

      Hi Kayla. No worries! Two people voting from the same IP address is not a problem. 20-50 votes coming from the same IP address in 5 minutes is. The people who are cheating know that they are without question- you aren’t one of them, but thank you for asking.

  41. Go Audrey!!

  42. Thanks for putting my mind at ease! It’s a great idea for a contest, and I wish all the contestants the best of luck. :)

  43. I think it’s so awesome that JMF is helping people realize their farming dreams! One of the things I love most about farming is that so many giving, earnest, hard working people share this community.
    I’m another of Leah’s sisters, (the one in the video with the cow) and I know first hand how hard she works. We grew up working on our farm together, and I can’t think of anyone who has worked harder to get where they are today. I encourage people to vote for Leah, Jared and Clark, because I know that they will provide an amazing, happy, long, and healthy life for this flock. Above all best wishes to your flock, where ever they find their new home!

  44. I am so proud of Sebette that in her 50’s… she is coming back to the farm. I am her younger sister and know how hard we worked on our horse farm…standing a stud, foaling, raising and training the horses as well as new riders. We did not have much of a life outside the horse farm with about 30 horses and 50+ students during our growing up years. She will be a great flock mommy…just look at her…she looks like a sheep…that is why her nick name is “Wholly”!! She even asked me to paint her a sheep for Christmas a couple of years ago…even though I am a new artist!!! Go, Sebette, We Love You and Your Little Farm!!!

  45. I hope my friend Sebette gets this golden opportunity to have some serious sheepie love. I know her from several local groups, crafting and chickening. She has been determined to learn everything about sheep in order to be the best shepherdess around. I know she will may a great one, and I for one will be visiting them for some up-close and personal sheep hugging!

  46. Tolerably Rocky Farms, you get our vote. Have you been to Iron Kettle Farm since they opened this past weekend? They have brand new baby goats only a few days old. How magical to be able to have your own on your property! Good luck, and we look forward to visiting and playing with your new fiber pets!

    The Braths

  47. What a wonderful contest. Best of luck !!

  48. Virginia Thorson

    April 30, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    Looks amazing Laben family…..I am going to go clean my chicken coop now after seeing yours!!!! Hope you win the sheep!

  49. Yay Labens! I hope that Clark gets some sheep friends from Juniper Moon.

  50. Cheers to Audrey Morris, resident of Montgomery County’s Ag Reserve and artisan – now to be shepherdess!

    You have all the tools needed to make a success of a new flock – patience, love, acumen and desire.

    MCA is cheering you on!

  51. Melissa Jackson

    April 30, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Please notify me to tell me who the winner is.

  52. I’ve known Leah since birth and she has always completed the goals that she sets for herself. I have no doubt that with Jared’s support (and Clark too) that they will be committed and successful in their efforts!

  53. What a beautiful farm. I think Clark needs a sheep to watch over.Good luck.

  54. I, too, live in Montgomery County, and the setting of Audrey’s farm is very beautiful! She has really done here homework; the sheep would be lucky to land in her care. We’re rooting for Audrey to be the winner this year, and thank Juniper Moon Farm for creating this great contest . . .

  55. Here’s a big HUGE vote of confidence for the Labens! Beautiful family, beautiful farm!!! They will do an incredible job fulfilling your goal of giving your animals a stress-free, humane and peaceful life. Here’s hoping that you win the sheep for Clark!

  56. Hope the Labens win!! I’d like a sweater! ;-D

  57. Audrey – a true renaissance woman! I have know here since she was 18, and at high school, and I recall that she played the banjo very well! A most unusual choice of instrument.
    It does not surprise me that she should now move on from banking to shepherding at another stage in her life.
    Her knitted items are a treat to behold and it would be wonderful to see her be able to participate in the whole production process.

    Good luck Audrey!

  58. Gertrude Cooper

    May 1, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    WOW! Looks like Audrey really has done her homework! Ff all the contestants, she appears to be the most deserving to me!

  59. Jana Durback

    May 1, 2012 at 7:45 pm

    Please pick Audrey Morris! thanks

  60. Jennifer Jones

    May 1, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    I like your give away:) Thanks for redoing the voting grids. I think the way it was affected the outcome. Too bad can’t change the dates and start from zero with the voting now.

  61. Agatha Morgan

    May 1, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    The person who is most deserving of the sheep is the one who is the best with her needles! Have to go with Ms. Morris!

  62. Audrey’s farm is beautiful!

  63. Sebette, I’m so thrilled you are moving toward your dream! I’ve known Sebette since 1973, were college roommates in ’74. Not only is she a former horse woman, as her sister stated. She is as smart as a whip, eventually becoming a chemist. But the most important qualities are her kindness, compassion and intuitiveness. You go Wooly!

  64. Good Luck!
    I can’t wait to hear that you’ve realized your dream!
    Bonne chance,

  65. Josephine Ajayi

    May 2, 2012 at 9:24 am

    I actually looked up qualities that define an ideal shepherd/shepherdess and can confidently state that the Juniper Moon sheep can’t possibly find a better sheperdess than Audrey Morris. Audrey is kind and gentle, knowledgeable, thorough, methodical and motivated and most importantly my very own knitting sensei!
    Equipped with her deep-rooted love of sheep, fabrics and knitting, Audrey can’t but be a success in this endeavour. Thank you for playing a role in making her dream come true.

  66. No worries, Susan. I’m a terrible instruction reader! Whether it be patterns, forms, what have you. Always get burned on my absent-mindedness regarding reading instructions. Bolding that part might have helped, though, since usually you don’t expect to be able to vote more than once.

    I’m so amazed by the energy, vision, and dedication of the candidates. We are especially crossing our fingers for Sebette, not only because she’s a Purl’s customer and member of our stitch group, but she’s just an awesome lady, is coming at life with renewed purpose and vitality, and because she’d make a fabulous shepherdess! GO SEBETTE!!!!

  67. Go Labens! I love that you are continuing a family tradition of farming for yourselves and your son.

  68. John & Brigette Parsons

    May 2, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    Hey Jared & Leah!

    We love you guys! Can’t wait to come see the farm!

    J & B

  69. Martha Washington

    May 2, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    SPLENDID; the first word that popped into my mind after seeing this giveaway! All of the participants are oh so deserving! I choose not to vote, because I feel like they all deserve it equally :-) Happy knitting to all!

  70. Maggie Gifford

    May 3, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    I have known Audrey Morris for over 25 years, and have seen her knitting become extraordinary. She has a beautiful farm, and has done so much to make it a wonderful home for her family and her future sheep. It’s so great to see a good friend change directions and create a new life. Go, Audrey!

  71. Teresa Kaczmarek

    May 3, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Having been friends with Audrey for years as a knitter and hockey mom, she is a total delight to spend time with and talk about a talented knitter and designer! I am always inspired after knitting with her. Audrey’s farm is the perfect setting for a flock of sheep. Thank you Juniper Moon for the cool idea of the “flock giveaway”.

  72. AUDREY 2012

  73. Suzanne Cedfeldt

    May 4, 2012 at 8:19 am

    Go Laben family!!

  74. Good luck, Audrey.

  75. After viewing the videos and assessing each contestant I feel Audrey Morris would be the best “Shepherdess” to a herd of sheep. Her farm in Montgomery Co. is well suited for raising sheep with several grazing areas. She is also in an area where she would have support from other sheep shepherds when her sheep come home. She has meticulously done her research and I feel she is well prepared for this new challange in her life. Having her own herd will bring a new dimension to her love of fibers, knitting and now spinning. A true return to our roots way of living. My shelties would love her farm and of course to help herd her flock!

  76. Go Labens! Clark will enjoy some sheep, I’m sure.

  77. Leah, Jared and Clark are very special people who will raise the sheep with the love and attention they need. Hope to visit them and the sheep sometimes soon.
    I encourage everyone to vote for the Labens!

  78. I was just trying to figure out if voting ends Friday night midnight or Saturday night midnight. I can see either interpretation!! Thanks

  79. Exactky how many is a flock?

  80. Good luck!

  81. MonicaW / moldavitesofa (Ravelry)

    May 4, 2012 at 11:51 am

    All four farms sound like great places to send a flock but AUDREY MORRIS gets my vote.

    I am a new urban knitter in the NoVA/DC area who meets with a Thursday night craft group and her schnoodle reminds me of our past schnauzers and poodles. As a researcher by trade, I am really impressed to the amount to due diligence she has given to this task.

    Heading to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival tomorrow, have a great weekend everyone!

  82. Jane Yarboough

    May 4, 2012 at 11:59 am

    GO LABENS!!!!!

  83. Jeremy Wycoff

    May 4, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    Hey Labens – Been trying to vote daily for you guys. I have also put out a request to all of my Facebook friends to vote today and tomorrow. Good luck!

  84. Go Audrey!!!

  85. The flock would surely thrive best growing up with the Laben family! Lovely people. It’s important to carry on traditions with younger generations… Good luck! :)

  86. I think you should give each family two ewes and a ram = make everyone happy. :)

  87. Sharon Vaughn

    May 4, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    Good luck to this family, not many have the courage for this kind of life style. There is nothing like fresh fruits and veggies from your own garden.

  88. To me Audrey is the most prepared and highly qualified. I am so pleased to see her vote count rising and I do hope she will be the winner. Best of luck!

  89. Melissa (SheCrochets)

    May 4, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    What a lovely group of candidates. I admire the courage of anyone who decides that this life is for them. I am not so brave, but I’ve been living vicariously through JMF for a couple years. I hope to do the same with the newest sheep/goat owners.

    Good luck to all the contestants!

  90. Good luck!


    May 4, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    I am happy to support Audrey Morris in the SHEEP GIVEAWAY. My wife and I use the same computer so you will see the same IP address but 1 vote each for us, All the candidates had excellent videos and plans but Ms, Morris has researched the plusses and minuses of this undertaking and is prepared for a new phase in her life. I wish her and all the candidates well.

  92. Audrey- Bring ’em home to the Ag Reserve!

  93. This is an awesome contest, what makes it even better is my sister Leah’s ranking in it. Having grown up on a farm with Leah I know she’s is a dedicated and hard worker, also she has the knowledge of animal husbandry and a whole crew of support from our family and friends. Farming is a long standing tradition where we come from and it’s so awesome to see my family branching out and carrying on that tradition. Not only would I like to thank Juniper moon farms personally for holding this contest and promoting agriculture, but also each and every person who has voted for my beautiful sister and her family. Also I would like to tell Leah and Jared how proud I am to call them family, your hard work, love, and dedication to your dreams are an inspiration to me!

  94. I vote for Audrey! Rose (my Wheaten Terrier) loves to herd sheep after she’s filled herself up with “droppings”!


  96. I hope U win!

  97. This has been a wonderful event for our rural community! I did want to share my concern that the votes will be reviewed in some way to ensure that the rules were properly followed.

    In our home , each of us (4) voted once per day per the instructions . Maybe next time a cookie can be installed to accept only one vote per email address.


  98. Voting for Audrey because I support the local farmers and artisans in my county’s agricultural reserve. ♥

  99. Elizabeth rice

    May 5, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    Voting for the Labens! I hope their dreams come true!

  100. Maura DiNardo

    May 5, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    We vote for the LABEN’S!!!
    best of luck
    from the DiNardo Family

  101. Audrey Morris

  102. Jean Sutherland

    May 5, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    I cast my vote for Audrey Morris.

    Thank you, and God bless everyone.

    Jean Sutherland

  103. Voting for the Labens!

  104. rachel steinberg

    May 5, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    well, it’s not midnight, EST, May 5th and the voting buttons are not up anymore… but here’s one more for the Labens!

  105. Cynthia and Riley Morris

    May 6, 2012 at 12:01 am

    Audrey got our vote. Always have and always will.

  106. Susan

    May 6, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    Not cool, Eve. I’m deleting your comment and I strongly advise you to cut it out. You aren’t doing anyone any favors.

  107. Carolyn McGinity

    May 6, 2012 at 7:29 pm

    Where is the winner posted?

  108. Winners soon?

  109. Mark Buccigrossi

    May 7, 2012 at 11:51 am

    When can we expect the results. I think this is a great adventure for many folks and wish to thank you for supporting this giveaway. MB

  110. Results please? Where are they????

  111. Jennifer Jones

    May 8, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    Thank you for this contest, for caring for animals and wanting to give them a good life. Thank you for passing that on to others, too:)

  112. What a wonderfull thing you have done for these deserving people! I am thrilled for all of them!
    Best of luck everyone with your new flocks!

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