Sending the warmest of Thanksgiving Blessings to you all from everyone here at the farm ❤ This year I am even more thankful than in previous years, as 2020 has been a massive eye opener on many levels. The glaring deficiencies in our society are now very apparent, however we as a country are now also becoming divided on so many issues. It is shocking how our world has transformed this year, and how when we need our neighbours and communities the most, it seems fear will keep all us separated. I hope this a temporary reality. At the early part of the year during the lockdown, I used that time to clearly reevaluate what was the most important to me and how I wanted to move forward. I am so grateful for that time, as hard as it was, as I set clear intentions for the year ahead. I shifted my focus to be more mindful and to use my business to reach and help as many as we could. I am so glad that I did! This year has made me more thankful and passionate about the simple things in life. I am so thankful for my family, friends and community. I am very thankful for my life and where I live. I am so thankful for my amazing herd and all the healing they bring to me, my family and each and every one of our visitors. I am so thankful to our beautiful planet, the life she provides, and the sun that shines down on us all. We may live in scary and uncertain times, but we all have things to be thankful for. I hope that you each have a wonderful day full of love, smiles and laughter ❤
I think I am long overdue in giving a farm update. It has been a very busy few weeks with more and more families coming through all the time. The herd is actually starting to get even friendlier, if you can imagine! I think the flow from our old work to the new rhythm is finally settling in. When demand is super high, like on recent weekends, we are able to allow 5 groups through a day. Each group that comes, brings out new magic and connections. The herd as a whole is in good health and my team of volunteers continue to work hard to ensure all their needs are met. Lots of hands on learning continues to happen here with hoof trimming, deworming and other routine tasks. As the colder weather comes in, keeping winter coats growing healthy and thick is important. We have a few goats in our herd with skin and coat issues so this time of year it is essential to stay on top of it otherwise they can struggle all winter. The herd is eating and bulking up in winter weight, and it is also the time of year for goats to begin to rut. Like deer and moose, goats have a seasonal breeding season and if they had their way, it would be now! Unfortunately for my herd, they live in Muskoka where winters are very long and harsh. For this reason we do not actually begin breeding here until January. That way I can ensure kids are born in the warmer months and we don't have to bring in the use of heat lamps and other devices which increase the risk of fire. I would rather play it safe, and have babies born when it is easier for them to thrive. I have just begin my breeding plans for 2021 and as usual we should have new babies on the ground from May to August. I know for certain I want to have enough milk to begin producing goat's milk soap again, so I know I need to breed accordingly. This will mean more babies to love and cuddle next year though, and who doesn't love that? Stay tuned for those details soon!
Now that autumn is in full swing, that means the farm slowly turns towards winter preparations. The farm equipment used to make hay is being put away for the year. The yard gets tidied and outside furniture put away. I am also slowly putting my garden to bed. I say slowly as it continues to grow zucchini like mad even with the frosty mornings. I am not looking forward to snow coming, but I know it will be here in a matter of weeks. Once the snow is on the ground, our programs move into the cozy barn. Goats are not fans of precipitation of any kind, and wouldn't dare to tread in more than an inch of snow. This means during the cold months, our guests get to relax with the goats in their main living pen. Cozy with fresh straw bedding, many guests find themselves laying amongst the goats and falling asleep to the sounds of the herd chewing their cud. Sound strange to you? Don't knock it until you try it! My herd are super willing to let you use their soft tummies as a pillow, while you gain a deep understanding of the term "Cuddle Puddle" , and also why we are so addicted to doing it here. If you've been looking for a new experience, here it is!
Until the snow is here though, we will continue to operate our outdoor programming for as long as possible. We have recently made a change to our insurance providers which I am hoping will allow us to continue to open more and more doors moving forward with our programs here. 2020 has proven to me that the work the herd and I do is not only needed, but also deeply appreciated. I wish to personally thank every single person who has taken the time to come out to see the herd this year. You've all helped us to stay afloat, but also continue to inspire us to keep going. With all of your continued support, my dream continues to grow.
From the bottom of our hearts, the herd and I thank you ❤ ~ Angee