Sunday, August 29, 2010

Our First Open Farm

First Open Farm from RJ Stangherlin on Vimeo.
Wonderful children enjoying life on the farm.
We had our first Open Farm on Friday, August 27, 2010, and it was a delightful day. In a week of farm firsts, this one topped the list. A dear friend who has trained all our dogs, Julie Zak and her 3 children spent the day at Pine Hill Llama farm. I showed them the farmhouse and we went upstairs to play with the cats. Both are, like the llamas and our new dog, patient loving well socialized pets. Then we rode tthe golf carts to the barns, took a look at the beautiful Blue Mountain view, and met the llamas. I wanted the children to experience a farm first hand, so while I cleaned the paddock, the llamas met the children. So often farm life is romanticized, even mythologized, but I wanted them to know that although I would not live any other place or way, a farm is work.
Tess and Alyssa
An Open Farm is one extended teachable moment, so I told them about llamas and the special needs and care they require. Julie's children are intelligent, and their questions threaded what we discussed. The children feed the girls and then added the electrolytes to the 2 water buckets, cleaned the auto waterer, and then helped me halter 3 of the girls. We took Tess and the 2 yearlings for a llama walk, and discovered that you do not wear bright red around the girls. Other than figuring that out, the walk was a great experience, but especially for me. It was my first walk as the leader, the one responsible for whatever happened. And it was a great confidence builder.
Brinson, Stehly, Tess and Maria
During the rest of the day, we played with the llamas, lunched, picked heirloom apples to take home, took a ride to a neighboring farm, and played with Allie, our new dog of 2 days. Something about puppies and children. Always a delight all around. In the afternoon, Jennifer Brinson and Katie Stehly joined us for hanging out with the llamas. What a fun time that was. Then back to the farmhouse for chocolate desserts, and already 5 PM, the open farm ended. Time flew. I was exhausted but so happy to share what I love so much. I began to understand Teri Conroy's joy of sharing Wunsapana Farm. I'm getting there, Teri. Thanks for showing me the way. It was so much fun, I'm going to do it again. Soon.

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1 comment:

  1. I'm blessed to be able to share the farm and I'm sure I get more from it than anyone, though most don't understand that. I'm so very happy for you RJ!