The following post is an archive of our GoFundMe campaign which began in 2020
I hope you all got to spend a pleasant and safe holiday season, and kept warm and cozy during the unusually cold weather and now I would like to wish all of you a good start into the new year 2022. Looking back on this past year, I find it difficult to determine what the overall sentiment might be. It was certainly a very full year – filled with challenges, difficulties, loss and a lot of resulting stress, but at the same time also an overabundance of many little and some big moments and experiences filled with happiness, joy, smiles, hope, encouragement, friendship, team spirit and being part of a great community. And all these put together allowed us to balance and overcome any obstacles facing us. Your ongoing, generous and unconditional support along with all your positive and reassuring comments are a very big part of this and always helped us to keep going. Thank you for helping to make this past year a good one!
There are many details, events and encounters I remember from last year and it would take too long to describe them all, but how to pick out the few that represent 2021? Someone asked me not long ago: “Looking back at this year: what are you grateful for?” And after my first astonishment about this question, I started to really reflect on it.
I am grateful that we have managed this past year despite all its difficulties. I realize that we have all been dealing with an unknown health situation, its risks and resulting opposing opinions. We had to accept that it’s okay to not always know what is right. Since this situation is a first to all of us, no one really knows the best course. We understand too, that we might not have dealt with everything perfectly, and that not everyone agreed with our approach. But I am certain that we were all doing our absolute best and with the farm being a team effort, we think we found the best compromise that enabled all the team members to feel safe at work while doing everything possible to ensure everyone’s safety – humans and animals alike. And while I can assure you that all this wasn’t easy and every day presented new obstacles, I’m proud to say WE did it, and we also learned some lessons for the future. At the same time I really like to emphasize that we are grateful for the community that made and kept us strong. Your support and kind words to the staff meant a lot in these difficult times. Thank you.
But what I reflect most on when thinking back are our animals. Last year we were faced with several very difficult goodbyes – most of them very unexpected and all of them broke our hearts so that each of our animal friends took little pieces of us with them. But in a way they also left little parts of themselves with us. No matter if they lived with us for many years or just a short while, any time with them was very precious and their passing was much too soon. They taught us so much and while it is still very sad to remember them, they will forever have a treasured place in our hearts.
For me personally when asked what I’m grateful for my mind starts swimming through different pictures, but the one that always floats back to the surface is little Rosie’s face. And my answer is: “I’m just grateful that Rosie is alive and strong.” And deep down this is my underlying feeling of this past year: Reflecting on Rosie’s difficult birth and having to accept that despite everything we tried and fought for we had to let her mother go when Rosie was only 2 days old, which once again put Rosie’s life at risk. When Alexis died in my arms I promised her that we would care for her daughter so that she would grow up to be a strong, happy and healthy goat. But during the weeks and months that followed I came to understand that I might have overestimated the power and ability of our care and that I might not be able to keep this promise. That we might also have to say goodbye to this precious little kid. There were days and many dark nights full of doubt and uncertainty, but luckily little Rosie is strong and resilient and she never gave up.
So I’m just grateful that Rosie is such a bundle of joy, love and energy now and I’m also grateful for all the support that she and I received during that time and since then, and for everything I learned during this difficult experience. When I see Rosie now, she just makes me smile. She is smart, independent, playful, strong, loyal and she has her own head, but she is also at home with the other goats and together with two stepsisters, Brie and Camie, they make a great little family. I guess I sound like an overly proud foster mum, but I can never forget that she had to overcome so many difficulties and that we are just so very lucky to be able to spend time with her now. She is a little furry angel on bouncing hooves and just a blessing – a reason to be grateful for.
But all our animals have their special stories and they make our farm whole and unique. Our goat herd is just filled with so many personalities and they all like to spend time with us humans and accept us in their middle. We’re happy to welcome our new alpaca Lacy to be Osmond’s companion – it’s the first time he has a lady friend and I think he is still trying to figure her out. Our old lady Peanut Butter had a big birthday in June when she turned 30!!! She has been fighting with several serious health issues, but so far she overcame all of them and is still going sweet and strong as always. Some were really close calls and I just like to send a huge Thank You to our vets and the staff for the great and extensive care she is getting. We had the great pleasure this year to care for a big flock of colourful and playful budgies and their friend Mango, the conure. Looking at (and listening to!) these amazing birds never got boring and always lifted our spirits. Maple, our big pig, gets to spend this winter in Beacon Hill and so far he seems to approve of it – even despite the weather. He’s never been a fan of travelling but he loves good food, a warm and cozy bed and to be tended and spoiled by just a small group of his favourite staff. Routine is the most important factor in his life, it gives him the sense of security he needs, and now he has become a gentle cuddly giant – until you touch his food. And of course you all know that there are many many more furry and feathery friends who make our farm family complete.
Since 2021 once again was a very short season at the farm, we are very thankful for all your support to help cover the cost for caring for the animals. It was really heartwarming and amazing to see how much support and kind messages we’ve received after we had to reopen the fundraiser in the fall. Thank you so much for staying true to us, for following our journey and for always lending your support.
Even though no one knows yet what the future might bring – especially in view of the current risks surrounding the Omicron variant – we are already talking about the new season, making plans, thinking through options and trying to anticipate obstacles. While we can not predict yet when the farm will open this year, we are all really looking forward to being back in town with all our animals and welcoming you once again to meet them – under whatever conditions might be safe at that moment.
We’ll keep you posted for all new developments and possible timelines.
For now we like to wish all of you a
HAPPY, HEALTHY AND GOAT YEAR 2022!
Stay safe & always keep a smile in your heart,