Archive for the Jacob Sheep Category

Lambing time is here….. Introducing Never Winter Lady Baa Baa’s twins….

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs on March 7, 2013 by neverwinterfarm
Never Winter Lady Baa Baa Twins born 3/4/2013Darker twin, Ewe named Sabrina.  Lighter twin is Ram named Marston.

Never Winter Lady Baa Baa Twins born 3/4/2013
Darker twin, Ewe named Sabrina. Lighter twin is Ram named Marston.


Sabrina left and Marston on right.

Sabrina left and Marston on right.

Teeny newborns, but very vigorous.  Baa Baa twinned as a first timer.

Teeny newborns, but very vigorous. Baa Baa twinned as a first timer.


Never Winter SabrinaPainted Rock Oxford X Never Winter Lady Baa Baa.  Twin DOB 3/4/2013

Never Winter Sabrina
Painted Rock Oxford X Never Winter Lady Baa Baa. Twin  (4?) Horn DOB 3/4/2013

Never Winter Marston.Painted Rock Oxford X Never Winter Lady Baa Baa.  Twin Fused 4 Horn (?) - DOB 3/4/2013.

Never Winter Marston.
Painted Rock Oxford X Never Winter Lady Baa Baa. Twin Fused 4 Horn (?) – DOB 3/4/2013.




Finally some updated photos!

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs on July 14, 2012 by neverwinterfarm

Wiggle Hill Elizabeth (1/2 sister to our lovely Carmen) Love her unique hornset and deep black color intensity.

Painted Rock Nellie is such a lovely girl.

Friday and her pretty ewe lamb, Eliza, grazing with the rest of the ewes.

Biue Ewe Lavender is my largest ewe and this single ram lamb is thriving. He’s a big healthy boy! I am hoping he has mom’s hornset.

Never Winter Hot Fudge is owned by Mary Tonkin. She will be leaving us soon and I will miss her. She is a very tame and sweet lamb.

Blue Ewe Fleur will be moving to Painted Rock Farm this month and her daughter, Adele, will replace her in my flock. I am glad that Fleur will have a wonderful breeding home with Cheryl and Mike Terrano.

This lovely ram is Never Winter Berkley. He will be moving to the North Country soon. His horns will rainbow and I think he is going to be a stunning herd sire.

Another of Berkley. He is very difficult to photograph. He does not want to look at me! Frustrating!

Chicory Lane Eli’s Friday and I have become VERY close. We love each other. Haha. I know that sounds funny, but it’s true. We have such a bond. She protects me from my dogs (which is hilarious.) I keep telling her that I am in no danger, but she doesn’t believe me! What a loyal soul she it! It’s THE BEST!

Another of Blue Ewe Lavender and her ram lamb, Cobalt. He is for sale, by the way.

Never Winter Lila will certainly have a home here if she does not find a good breeding home. Her white is brilliant and her black is so true. Fleece quality is the best of this season. Dam is Poppy and sire is Oxford. She should have a lovely wide hornset and is very sweet and docile.   She is for sale.

Isis.  Oh, mighty Isis!  Painted Rock Haven and Blue Ewe Merlin’s Zest produced this pretty ewe last year. She has lovely fleece with very dark color intensity.

Blue Ewe Liberty’s yearling ewe, Sapphire is so regal.

Spirit has been doing an amazing job raising triplets this season! I am certain that I should have weaned her lambs quite some time ago. But, she’s doing really well and so I’ve been too occupied to get the weaning underway. She produces amazing milk quantity and is just a wonderful ewe. She will get a year off, that’s certain. Very much deserved!

Sprinkles followed me to the pasture as usual. Vocal as usual.

Another of Lila. I am hoping to demonstrate the quality of her fleece with some extra photos for you all.


Lila’s fleece.

Sweet St. Jude’s Sophia.

Never Winter Haagen Dazs will stay here. He’s a great combination of lines for me to retain.

Blake’s favorite ewe of all time, Lady Baa Baa! She is annoyingly tame and has even nibbled on my bare leg to get my attention. We adore her, but she is more like a puppy than a sheep! Ha!

Never Winter Buttercup has 6 horns, so spacing is obviously not perfect. However, she is truly beautiful and has one of the nicest fleeces I’ve seen. I am super tempted to keep her (and still may.) But, my numbers are not where I need them, so I hope to find her a great breeding home. For Sale.

This boy has been a favorite of mine since birth! He is lovely in every way. Brazen is a triplet, black and white (lilac carrier) with two lilac siblings. Very long, flowing, crimpy, locky, open fleece that is soft. Ideal markings and lovely horns. For Sale.





Tay-Sachs Carrier Jacob Sheep Breeding Program Benefit Raffle For 2012??? What are your thoughts, friends?

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs, Raffle, Tay-Sachs on June 25, 2012 by neverwinterfarm

I thought I’d repost last years raffle details  and raffle items for those who didn’t happen across the raffle last year, and also as a reminder to those who participated.  Many THANKS to those who supported the project.  It was certainly a success and meant a lot to the folks involved with trying to find a cure for these children.

In preparing to jump into this project again, I wanted to send out a TEST for interest.  I want to ask, IS THERE INTEREST in another raffle.  If so, do you have anything you’d love to donate to the raffle?  Will you buy tickets to support this cause?  Do I (Never Winter Farm) have a lamb you would love to see raffled?  Which one?  A ram lamb?  Ewe Lamb?  Let me know?  Any input that you could offer would be extremely helpful as I gear up!!  So, Thanks!

Here are three available lambs that could easily be offered on the raffle:

Buttercup is a six horn lilac ewe. (Kreutzer Farms Spirit X Springrock Shadrach)
Brazen (Spirit X Shadrach) 4 horn black/white triplet
Lila (Blue Ewe Poppy X Painted Rock Oxford) Beautiful presence and you can’t see it, but she has more black on her backside.  Her BLACK is very black.

Pretty please send comments, thoughts, suggestions, donation offers, hopes, and prayers!!   You can scroll down and COMMENT HERE on the blog, or you can privately email me at  You are also welcome to phone my cell at 678-596-7776.   Appreciate you all!!!

Shari Staines 6/25/2012  (Post date.)


Continue reading below to see all details from LAST SEASON!  We had some amazing items!



To Purchase Tickets:

1.  Scroll down and order by commenting on this blog post.  Be sure to include your email address, the number of tickets, and which item or items you would like your tickets to go toward.


2.  Email me at  Be sure to include the number of tickets and which item or items you would like your tickets to go toward.


3.  Call me at 678-596-7776.  If you do not reach me, feel free to leave a message with how many tickets you would like and for which item/s as well as your email address.  I will see that you get an invoice asap.

*Once you comment here or email me, you will be invoiced for your tickets.  Your invoice will include a breakdown of the number of tickets that you are purchasing for each item.  Your invoice will be a paypal generated invoice and will reach you in your email.  You may pay through paypal, or print the invoice and mail it with a check or money order.

Thank you so much for your support!   Good luck and please spread the word!





RAFFLE ITEM #1 – SHADOW MOUNTAIN ROSETTE – 2011 Lilac Ewe Lamb Donated by Mary Tonkin of Shadow Mountain Jacobs. Rosette comes with a complimentary health certificate and free delivery to Oregon, Washington, or the AGM. Rosette is sired by Mud Ranch Packard and her dam is Rocky Acres Rosemary.  (DOB 1-28-2011.)  More details at SHADOW MOUNTAIN JACOBS.

This beautiful ewe lamb was to be Mary’s keeper lamb this year.  The story of the Tay-Sachs children touched her so much that she decided to donate Rosette to help the cause.  Thank you Mary!

Shadow Mountain Rosette

If you would like to view Rosette’s pedigree, please click on the link below:

Shadow Mountain Rosette Pedigree




RAFFLE ITEM#2 – WEAVING THE RAINBOW BOOK By George Ella Lyon and Stephanie Anderson.

Weaving The Rainbow is a stunningly beautiful book that has been donated by Sharon Lehrke and Sovreign Farms in Myakka City, Florida.  The artwork in this out of print picture book (former library book that is in pristine condition) is nothing short of breathtaking.

Thanks again to Sharon for being willing to “give up” this unique treasure from your own private collection of priceless finds! Visit Sharon at Sovreign Farms.




Elizabeth Strum of Rockhaven Farm has donated this beautiful washable Jacob Sheep Pelt.   Pelts make wonderful decorative items, wheel chair and bed pads, rugs, dog beds, and car seat pads for children and adults alike.  This pelt is approximately 32″ X 22″ and has a lovely spotting pattern.  A pelt of this size retails for somewhere between $90-$150.  This pelt has been professionally tanned and is soft and supple.  (Photos do not do justice to this piece.)  In addition, it is washable and will come with full care instructions.     Thank you Elizabeth!  Visit Elizabeth and her flock at ROCKHAVEN FARM.




Jacob Sheep Yarn 15.2 oz
This is 15.2 ounces of Jacob Wool Yarn.  I had this spun up by Spinderellas and they did a beautiful job!  The tag on this says 270 yards 4 skeins.  It is a lot of yarn!  This wool was harvested from Painted Rock Kingsley.  His fleece is amazingly soft and I think you’ll find this yarn to be remarkably soft as well.
Rich Mountain Retreat

This is amazing!  Cheryl and Mike Terrano of Painted Rock Farm have offered up a weekend at their cabin for our raffle!  Folks, you can drive over to Painted Rock Farm and see the sheep!!!!

The Rich Mountain Retreat is ideal for weekend getaways, honeymooners or anyone wanting a break from the daily grind! Enjoy watching deer and wild turkey as you relax on the 10 foot porch that surrounds the cabin. Nearby hiking and walking trails provide a look into Battlefield history during Civil War times. You can spend the day walking thru camp sites, such as Camp Garrett. Re-enactments of the Battle of Rich Mountain occur each summer ~ ask about details!

The fine print:  (Subject to availability.  Some restrictions may apply.)

Visit Mike and Cheryl Terrano and the fabulous Painted Rock Flock at PAINTED ROCK FARM.







Our next raffle item is a beautiful raw Jacob fleece that has been donated by our wonderful friends and fellow Jacob Sheep breeders Jeff and Mary Margaret Mauer at Deerfield Ranch.  This is Deerfield Evangeline’s hogget fleece (which means this is the fleece from her first shearing.)  Eva’s fleece is lovely.  She has a fine fleece that is soft with a nice lofty feel to it.  Her fleece is mostly white with approx. 5-10% black spots so will be very easy to sort and fabulous to use for a natural colored project or superb for dying.  Thank you to the Mauer Family at Deerfield Ranch!   Fiber enthusiasts….PLEASE spread the word about our raffle!  Send your friends our way!  Please share the link to our blog with your fiber groups!  We need all of the support that we can get.  This is such a great cause!





This is a drop dead gorgeous, and full of vibrant colors, handmade rug by Linda Bjarkman at Patchwork Farm.

Here is what Linda has to say about her beautiful rug:

“Handwoven (by me)
The weft is wool selvedges from Pendleton Mills. Woven on a cotton warp.
This rug measures ~ 27″ x 37″ and is machine washable. “

Thank you so very much to Linda and Dave Bjarkman!  You may visit Linda and Dave and their beautiful Jacob Sheep flock at PATCHWORK FARM.




Just when I thought that it couldn’t possibly get any more exciting folks!!!!!!!   Check this out!!!  Raffle item #9 is a stunning blanket that has been donated by Robin Lynde and Meridian Jacob Sheep.  Read on for more details!!

Robin Lynde, of Meridian Jacobs in Vacaville, California, weaves a variety of unique pieces from the wool her sheep grow.  Robin selects her sheep for top quality, soft fiber and uses only the best for producing her yarns.  She carefully selects and sorts the wool to be sent to the mill for spinning, creating unique yarns from each year’s wool crop.  Robin weaves blankets on a 60″ wide 16-shaft AVL dobby loom.  She wove this blanket using yarns in all the natural colors of the Jacob sheep.  It is 46″ X 67″ plus a 5″ twisted fringe.  Retail Value:  $350.00.

Meridian Jacobs is home to a breeding flock of about 65 Jacob sheep, but it is also a full-service fiber business, stocking spinning and weaving equipment, farm-produced and commercial yarns, Robin’s handwoven pieces, and gift items.  Robin teaches classes in weaving, spinning, and dyeing and hosts Open House events three times per year.  She created the popular Farm Club for people who want to know more about what it takes to raise sheep and produce fiber.  Robin’s pieces are for sale at The Artery in Davis, California and on her website at MERIDIAN JACOBS.

Thank you Robin for the BEAUTIFUL donation!!!





Never Winter Dashing (Painted Rock Moses X Blue Ewe Eire)

Dashing’s Pedigree

NEVER WINTER DASHING!      Dashing is a lilac carrier via his sire Moses.  He has a strong 4 horn background and a 4 horn twin.  Questions welcome via private email or go ahead and comment here.   Transportation to SAFF and health certificate are included.  (G444R -/-).



RAFFLE ITEM #11 – One of a Kind Jacob Sheep Sculpture by Laura Frazier of FarmGirl Arts.  “Elise.”

My very dear friend and fellow Jacob Sheep breeder, Laura Frazier, has done it again!  Laura is an exceptionally talented artist and her work never ceases to amaze me.  Here is what Laura has to say about her sculpture of a special little ewe lamb named Elise:

“This is a portrait of a special Jacob Sheep Lamb, Elise. This sculpture was created out of 100% homegrown wool using the needle felting technique. The core and basic shape were sculpted from Suffolk wool from my father-in-law’s flock. The wool for the exterior details and coloring was provided by my Jacob Sheep ram, Jericho. The process took around 10 or so hours. She is 4″ tall and 4.5″ long. I was honored to create this likeness of Elise for the raffle.”     Visit Laura at FARM GIRL ARTS.

I would like for you all to meet the real Elise lamb!  Here she is:

The Story of Elise, A Very Special Lamb:

Choosing a lamb model for the raffle was quite simple. Elise is a very special ewe and has stood out since the moment her little hooves hit the ground. Her markings are just exceptional, lots of color and splash make it easy to see her in the flock. Her fleece looks very promising, sporting even crimp and deep black color. Elise is just a precious, bubbly little lamb with the cutest nose ever!

This lamb was named in honor of Elise Rochman from O’fallon, Illinois. She is one of many children and families that have been affected by Tay-Sach’s Disease. You can read Elise’s story on the Cure Tay-Sach’s Foundation web site or click here. Sadly, little Elise lost her battle against Tay Sach’s in January of this year. She was barely six years old. Elise’s parents won’t see their little girl play with dolls or go to school for the first time. They won’t have slumber parties or teach her how to drive or see her off to her first prom. They won’t get to see her graduate high school or help plan her wedding. So much promise in that little life, cut short by a disease that currently has no cure. Elise the lamb also is affected by Tay-Sach’s . Her shepherd will not see her grow into the promise of what was envisioned for her either. And, while it pales in comparison to the loss of ‘real’ Elise, it is a loss nonetheless and still felt deeply by her Shepherd.

The main purpose for this fundraiser is to raise awareness of Tay-Sach’s and to provide information about the important role of the Jacob sheep in finding a cure. It is believed by many in the research community that the Jacob sheep may well hold the cure for Tay-Sach’s disease in humans. A handful of shepherds in the US have opted to join hands with the scientific research team in this effort. These brave individuals have looked into the reality of human loss and suffering, knowing they could not stand by and do nothing. They should be commended for this indeed is labor of love ~ a love for children and families. While they may never meet face to face, they are bound together by hope in the search for the cure.

On behalf of Tay-Sach’s children and their families everywhere, Elise the lamb is proud to carry the name and legacy of Elise Rochman.




Gorgeous Quilt By Cheryl Bresin

Cheryl Bresin has been busy creating something very special for this fundraiser.    She finished this beautiful quilt just today!  It was certainly worth the wait and I am thrilled that she was kind enough to donate this true labor of love!  Thank you so very much Cheryl!  It means so much!

This is a queen sized quilt. It  is displayed on a double bed. The batting was professionally milled. It is covered in a cotton blend material and is hand quilted with hand spun Jacob yarn. It will be sent UPS with washing instructions.

You may visit Cheryl and her family as well as her flock of Jacobs by following these links:





Here is how the raffle will work:Tickets will be on sale from now until August 14th  21st at 12:01 AM EST.  So, ticket sales are over at midnight on that previous Saturday night.(August 13th 20th @  Midnight  EST.)  At that time, sales will close and late tickets will be completed and added to the raffle containers for each respective item.  All raffle tickets and containers are being handled off site from my farm by a neutral party and that family is NOT allowed to purchase ANY raffle tickets.  (You will meet them during the drawings.)  Just so that everyone knows….no one in MY immediate family is elligible to purchase raffle tickets.  (I want to keep this 100% legit and fair.)  On Sunday, August 14th  21st , drawings will be held off site and videotaped for YOU ALL to see.  It will be my goal to have the videotape of the drawings uploaded to Youtube on August 15th 22nd (Monday) with the Youtube link published on my farm blog.  This way, everyone who has participated may follow the link and view the drawings and see who the winners are!  Hopefully, it will be YOU!

100% of all ticket sales will go directly to the Tay-Sachs Carrier Jacob Sheep Breeding Program.  If we are blessed enough to raise more money than the breeding program requires at this time, surplus funds will go to the Cure Tay-Sachs Foundation.  Either way, your ticket purchase will go 100% toward helping to find a cure for these children.  Thank you so much for helping!

Ticket Prices Are As Follows:

$2          Each for Single Tickets

$20       Dozen (12) Tickets ( That’s $1.66 per ticket)

$50        35 Tickets                (That’s $1.43 per ticket)

$100      75 Tickets                (That’s $1.33 per ticket)

*You may buy a large volume of tickets for any ONE item.  Or, you may decide to split your tickets on several of the items.  Just be sure to tell us what you’d like for us to do with your tickets.  Folks, even if you can only purchase one ticket, every little bit helps and you have done your part in helping find the cure.  We appreciate every single ticket purchase more than you know.   The more people that participate, the more positive energy that we can create to fuel this cause and push toward the cure!  This is so exciting!!

*Note  –  Shipping via UPS or USPS will be paid for in the continental US by fundraiser proceeds for all items excluding the lambs and weekend getaway.

Update on Blue Ewe Merlin’s Zest….

Posted in Jacob Sheep on September 6, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

I have been meaning to blog about this for some time now.  As you all remember, Zest was injured by Moses last year (my fault.)  After two attempts to wrap his lateral horn with vet wrap….both attempts failed with time….my vet suggested that I use a marine fiberglass repair kit to CAST the horn to the upright horn.

As Zest’s horn continued to grow in diameter, the top portion of his cast began to crack.  As of a month ago, the top of the cast was open all the way UP the top horn, but I left it there not knowing HOW I would get the darn thing off.  But, time took care of things and eventually the cracking (with the horn growth) continued until only a small bit of material held the whole thing in place.

I noticed that Zest was becoming annoyed with it as he began to fling his head a bit and rub the cast on the trees.  So, it was time to get ahold of him and remove it.  My two youngest boys, Zach and Blake, held Zest while I used the dremel tool to buzz through the remaining section.  Then, I slipped it off the end of his lateral horn.

I am very pleased to report that his horn seems very solid.  (KNOCK WOOD.)  Obviously, the horn healed back in a bit of a wacky place (too high.)  This was caused by his hitting his horn on the food pan, over and over again, prior to my casting it in a hard cast.  When it was time to hard cast it, I didn’t want to yank it back down as it was already well into a healing process and I thought it best to leave well enough alone and not aggravate it.

So, lesson learned….if this happens again, I will go right to the hardware store for the fiberglass repair kit.  It was only about $15 bucks!  Best $15 I ever spent!

Here are some photos from the other day:



Posted in Jacob Sheep, Raffle, Tay-Sachs on August 20, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

I want to thank everyone who has come through to help with raising needed funds and awareness for our Tay-Sachs breeders and for these children and their families!!!  THANK YOU!!!!

For those who have not purchased tickets yet, you can still make the deadline.  Simply contact me via phone or email (or comment here) prior to the midnight cutoff TONIGHT!

That’s correct, the raffle will be OVER as the clock strikes TWELVE MIDNIGHT TONIGHT!!!  You can still make the order cutoff and join together with us as we ARE HELPING THESE KIDS!


Fundraiser Ticket Sales Extended By One Week – Purchase Your Tickets Through August 20th!!

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs, Raffle, Tay-Sachs on August 11, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

An additional note for ticket holders and interested parties regarding the ram lamb item, Dashing!  I am going to sweeten the pot a bit!  You will now have a choice between three 2011 ram lambs!  See my farm website at  If you win the ram lamb, you may decide to take DASHING, GALORE, or HAUK.  Your preference!  If you need further info. such as pedigree details on either one of these rams, just give me a call or shoot me an email.

Updated Photos of Raffle Ram Lamb and others…..

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs, Raffle, Tay-Sachs on July 26, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

Never Winter Dashing - Fundraiser Lamb

Never Winter Dashing - View of Horn Sweep


To purchase tickets to WIN DASHING, please see our Raffle Fundraiser Page!!

The above photos of Dashing were taken 7/26/2011.

Dashing's Twin - Never Winter Psalm

Psalm - Dashing's Twin (Reserved)

Never Winter Galore - A Shadrach son out of Spahr Farm Darlene - FOR SALE!

Amazing fleece on Galore!  See my website for more information.

Update from the Cure Tay-Sachs Foundation and Summer Benefit Raffle Coming…..

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs, Tay-Sachs, Uncategorized on May 27, 2011 by neverwinterfarm
Hauk (Perfect Spot Norway X Kreutzer Farms Cayden)For followers of the Tay-Sachs Research involving our beloved Jacob Breed, here is a research update from Ken Bihn of the Cure Tay-Sachs Foundation:
Cure Tay-Sachs Team,
I promised an update about the research – I attended a meeting on May 13th to discuss the research – and now I can tell you the plan.    There is still much to work out – but I think the research team and the funding team are on the same page.    We’ll start with the usual financial update and then talk out the plan.   This is the email you save and track our progress against this plan.  Let’s call it our line in the sand!!    
May is going well – led by our great friends The Richard E Capri Foundation – they pledged $25,000 in five yearly installments.   This was our third installment and a $5,000 boast to May.  We also got a nice – and totally unexpected $1,000 check from the IOF Foresters.  They did a reverse raffle fundraiser for us!!   And finally the Elyria Catholic High School sophomores sponsored a Penny War – and they collected $346 for us!!   Nice kids.    May’s total is $11,872 from 46 kind and generous donors.     June should be a pretty big month.    We still have another $1,500 coming from the Cure Tay-Sachs Classic and June features the 6th Annual Elise Rochman Benefit Concert on June 18th and the 8th Annual Drive FORE Dylan on June 25th.   The Bihn’s hope to attend both events.   Plus for anyone still interested – the Rabinowitz, Rochman, ten Berge, Luce, Marquart and Bihn families are heading to Compass Cove in Myrtle Beach between June 26th and July 6th.   The Rabinowitz cousin Edie can book you a room.   Lots of time to sit and talk – no pressure and lots of sunshine, pools and beaches!!   Our 2011 total is up to $95,106 from 581 kind and generous donors.   Finally our creation to date total is at $1,664,289 from 7,333 kind and generous donors.   The key to all this hard work is we have $1,001,600 ready to be invested in research.  We have already spent $567,672 on research – but now we have some heavy lifting to do.     
Let’s talk about research.  I will try to be brief – but there is a lot of information to digest.    Let’s start with where we are today.  
  • The NIH grant will enter Year 3 in September 2011 – Year 3 ends September 2012.   It is a four year $3.5 million grant aiming toward Tay-Sachs Gene Therapy Human Clinical trials in September 2013 (end of year 4).  
  • The NIH grant application included a non-binding commitment from a large pharachuetical company to produce the vectors for clinical trial in Year 3.    That company no longer funds vector manufacturing and we could not find another taker – so this needs to be privately funded.   The first quote was $430,000 per vector and we need two vectors ($860,000).
  • The NIH grant never included the Jacob’s Sheep – there where not even discovered until 2009.    To date our ranch in Texas (St. Jude’s Ranch; Joan and Fred Horak) and our ranch in West Virginia (Painted Rock; Cheryl Terrano) have generated 10 affected sheep for this years research.    The cost to relocate the sheep to Auburn and treat them is $110,000.  
  • The animal models have identified some very tricky parts of the brain that need to be injected to get the best results.  Fortunately a new development in neuro-surgery tools allows for more precise injections.   The surgeons would like to test the new tools and vector volumes on primates.   The NIH does not cover this expense, but we have to do it to protect our kids.   Cost is $150,000.
  • Gene therapy vectors need to be tested for Toxicity before the FDA would allow us to inject them into a person.   The NIH grant does include paying for the Toxicity Studies ($430,000) but not until Year 4.   To accelerate the trials we’d have to privately fund the test.    
  • To summarize – at the start of the May 13th meeting we had human clinical trials in Sept 2013, we still needed $1.1 million in private funding, and $430,00 more if we wanted to accelerate the trial!!

The meeting was very productive.   We created a new sense of HOPE we could get this done – and faster then expected.    The TSGT did have some preliminary meetings with the FDA and the feedback was very positive.   At the same time we must keep the NIH as a partner – we need to work with them on project timing.   

  • The biggest development was a new vector manufacturing facility that wants to become a player in the vector manufacturing business.   They quoted $225,000 per vector – changing our total from $860,000 for two vectors to $450,000!.   We need to vet this facility because the manufacturing process take 9 months and if they fail we’d be way behind schedule.   The plan is to create test samples and use consultants to review this facility – we included those costs in the quote.   If it works we save $410,000 – and it reduces our private funding requirements to $710,000!! (not counting Toxicity)  The TSGT did submit an NIH grant request for the vector manufacturing, but the request was scuttled (meaning rejected without full review).
  • With a favorable preliminary review by the FDA – we considered accelerating the research.   If the new vector manufacturing cost is accurate – we could move the Toxicity Study up by privately fund the $430,000 – pushing our total back to $1.1 million (lets round to $1.2 million because accelerating means more consulting time; plus research is never on budget).   The accelerated time line aims for clinical trials in October 2012 – it cost $430,000 to gain one year.    If we can do it – it could mean 10 to 15 kids born with Tay-Sachs disease might be helped (seems like a bargain when you look at it that way). 
  • The next question – when is the money needed?   The sheep are born and the disease is progressing – so that needs to start in June.   We’d also like to get the vector manufacturing started now – to see if they can do it.    We tried to break the money needs into quarterly buckets.    June 2011 needs $100,000, Sept 2012 another $525,000 and finally Dec 2011 another $475,000.   Some of the money requirements will drift into 2012 depending on payment terms and let’s assume we’ll need another $100,000 for overages. 

We created a new plan,new time line, and new budget – faster and actually cheaper (when does that ever happen?)   But do we have $1.2 million to accelerate the plan?   We set-up a fund raising conference call for May 17th to see what assets we have in house.    The NY Chapter of the NTSAD pledged $25,000 to the new plan, Sophia Pesochinsky pledged $25,000, the Mathew Forbes Romer Foundation pledged $50,000 and the Cameron and Hayden Lord Foundation pledged $100,000!!   So we have $200,000 committed.   As I mentioned earlier the CTSF has $1 million in the bank!!  We do have three on-going research funding commitments – the Fran Platt study, the Natural History study and the Lee/Snyder stell cell project.   We are hopeful the stem cell project is canceled as it is now one year late.   We have been locked into a May 31, 2011 deadline – fingers crossed the project is canceled.    If this project is canceled the CTSF can re-allocate $50,000 we already sent to the NTSAD and it lowers future commitments by $50,000 (it is a 2 year $100,000 project) – that gives us $100,000 more for TSGT funding.   The CTSF is committing $700,000 to the new plan!!    You did that!!   Your hard work has put us in position to bring this research home.    We have $900,000 committed – that leaves $300,000 more to raise (and $100,000 of that was the extra we added to be safe).    If the stem cell project is canceled the gap shrinks to $200,000!!!   The funders mentioned above are the major research funders – we have all funded via the NTSAD to give the outside world the impression the NTSAD is a major research funder – but behind the curtain the money is primarily raised by this core group.  In the past 10 years $1.8 million in research funding has been passed through the NTSAD – 86% of that has come from these five organizations – with the CTSF being the largest!! 

So our marching order – find another $300,000 to complete the funding!!  Money we can raise – other foundations that might be interested in helping – any sources we can find.   We are soooo close.    We could be 18 months away from a child being treated!!!   

What to worry about:

  • The new vector manufacturing company fails and we have to go back to the $860,000 cost of the original quote.   We adjust by giving up the accelerated plan – we let the NIH pay for the Toxicity Study, $1.2 million raised is enough to cover the new cost, and the trials happen in Sept 2013!!
  • We cannot find the additional $300,000.   We will not let that happen – we’ll find a way.   
  • There is a cost associated with the clinical trial – probably in the neighborhood of $1.5 million.   The hope is once the FDA approves a clinical trial – the big corporate funders will be interested in funding the trial to get a piece of the therapy.  
  • The vectors do not pass the Toxicity Study.    The NIH has funding for the Tox test in Year 4 – so we get a second try if we need it; we adjust to Sept 2013 and go again.
  • The neuro-surgeons say the process to difficult.   Have you ever met a neuro-surgeon?   They think God works for them.   They will figure it out. 
  • The FDA does not approve our trial.    Our team has just begun to make our research results public – and the research community is in AWE of our results.   We have crossed our t’s, dotted our i’s and gone above and beyond.   There are currently many treated cats and treated sheep two sheep living!!   This is going to happen!!!

This update has gotten very long – but it may be the most important update I have written.   I really believe this is a doable plan with reasonable time lines.  The researchers and the funding community are all on the same page for a change.   The May 13th meeting was a picture of teamwork and honest exchanges.   We asked the hard questions and put all our chips on the table.   Our research has gone public now – the cat is out of the bag (pun intended) –  and the initial reviews are off the charts!!!  Miguel Esteves – the leader of the TSGT – even won an award as the 2011 Outstanding New Investigator from the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy.    Sounds important doesn’t it.   Miguel and the whole TSGT team are very, very good – and I feel for the first time like we are partners in this project. 

Next update I have to tell you about the efforts of our new Jacob Sheep ranchers from West Virginia is making to help us raise money.    Cheryl Terrano is working like crazy.   She is even planning on attending the 2011 Tay-Sachs Charity Auction (on 11-11-11) in Cleveland, OH.   Mark it on your calender and come to Cleveland (hotel rooms are only $79 + taxes with free parking).    We might even have Miguel on hand to tell everyone about the research in person!!      

Choo!  Choo!!!   Choo!!!!! (Kevin Romer asked for Miami Heat colors – I dislike the Heat but like Kevin Romer!!)
Feel free to pass this update on to anyone you think might be interested!!   We can use all the support we can get!!!
Hi Everyone,
More exciting news, folks!!!  In an effort to help support the Jacob Sheep Tay-Sachs Carrier Breeding Program, stay tuned for news of a raffle that we are holding THIS SUMMER!!!!!
Items that will be raffled include:
A 2011 Ram Lamb!
A Weekend Getaway Cabin (accommodations in the WV Mountains)!
An Original Artist Sculpture of a Breeding Program Lamb by Laura Frazier!
Jacob Yarn!
A Raw Jacob Fleece!
Some lovely Finished Items! And more…..
Stay tuned!!!  *Also, if anyone reading this would like to donate raffle items, please contact me.  This raffle will be advertised to the Jacob Breeders, Tay-Sachs friends and families, researchers, spinning guilds, and knitters.  Our target is to have the raffle online by June 15th!!! 
The lambs featured on this blog post are some potential ram lambs that I may be choosing from for the raffle (still watching development.) –    Shari

Galore (Springrock Shadrach X Spahr Farm Darlene)

Dashing (Painted Rock Moses X Blue Ewe Eire)

If you are interested in learning more about the Cure Tay-Sachs Foundation and Ken’s family and daughter, Dakota (who has Tay-Sachs,) you may copy and paste this link:

Thanks so much for caring.  Please help us spread the word by sharing this post and please stay tuned…….  This is an exciting time!!

My favorite ram….. (well, ONE of my favorite rams anyway.)

Posted in Jacob Sheep on May 5, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

I know that many of you remember an earlier blogpost about my favorite ram, Zest, having been injured by Moses.  My fault…. as I made a management error while reintroducing them after being with their breeding groups.  Moses is notably larger than Zest and was the winner of their unauthorized battle and Zest came away with a loose lateral horn.  I was able to do a soft cast and the horn healed beautifully for me!  I was simply thrilled!  Well, once Zest was turned out with the other sheep (I chose the bred ewe group) all was well, but then one day he must have caught that horn on something (a board?) and it became a bit loose again.  Still not a major injury, but it made me realize that in order to have that horn be 100% again, I’d need a better longer term casting solution to allow for a solid healing process.  So, my vet told me to run out and get a marine repair kit (bondo).  That is what I did and now my favorite boy has a long term cast that will allow him to do whatever he wishes without concern.  Check him out!  Isn’t he a doll?  I just love this ram!  He wears his fashion statement so well!

Blue Ewe Merlin's Zest


Oh, PS, not sure how I will eventually take this off.  Anyone have any ideas?  The vet didn’t include that part in his instructions.

Oh how the lambs do grow….

Posted in Jacob Sheep, Lambs on April 28, 2011 by neverwinterfarm

Never Winter Dashing


Never Winter Blest










Oh Mighty Isis



Miss Personality (Lady Baa Baa)


Itasca's fleece.



Psalm's left eye is a different blue entirely than his right.


Noah (For Sharon)

Noah and Miracle

Another Noah For Sharon

I hope you all will forgive me, but Noah’s new owner has dial up and my photo files are too large.  Sharon, enjoy these!!!    And PS……come and get him.  He’s nearly all grown up!