So, helping organize THIS is what has been keeping me insanely busy as of late..
On Saturday, June 18 from 1 pm to 4 pm, we will be holding Homes with Woofs here at the farm, with custom-made doghouses up for auction and celebrity judges Carol Anne Meehan (of 1310 News Radio Ottawa) and Alan Neal (of CBC Ottawa's All in A Day radio drive show) awarding ribbons to the best creations.
I listen to Alan Neal pretty much every day and am amazed he's coming to be a celebrity judge. And Carol Anne Meehan is wonderful too!
We are having a silent auction with some AMAZING items, plus a BBQ, pony rides (no, not on Finney. We don't need children being bucked across 86 acres!) and of course, plenty of rescue animals. If you are in the area (we are an hour from Ottawa and an hour from Montreal, 30 minutes from the Massena, NY border crossing), we'd LOVE to see you! Please cross your fingers for good weather, but we have enough outbuildings that we can keep dry if it does rain. The auction will be in the barn.
If you'd like to learn more, visit the Homes with Woofs website. If you want to volunteer, or donate things for the silent auction, just email me at the address in my profile or contact Peggy (the organizer and founder of the event) via the Homes with Woofs site.
Among other things, any money we raise will help pay for the fencing for the goat pasture we just put in, as well as veterinary care for the animals (like Luc's neutering next Thursday!) feed (approximately $750 a month for grain for pigs and goat and the birds, and several hundred a month for hay) farrier visits, and everything else that goes on around here (and I'm not even factoring in the 16 rescue cats!)
We are grateful for the enthusiasm and support of so many eople for this event. Just for example, a bunch of my friends are baking and donating more than 10 dozen cupcakes for the event. I have some truly wonderful people in my life and you will see many of their names in the sidebar of the Homes with Woofs website. I am overwhelmed by the response to this event. I feel very grateful and humbled. Yes, Gordon has a good job, but we still put a huge amount of our money into our beloved animals, and it really touches my heart to see how people want to donate, help and just be there. Makes a girl wanna cry!
Also I am blessed to have amazing barn help in Robert, Jackie, Bernie, Kim and Kevin, who come to do daily chores, which spares Gordon and me at least four hours of work a day (so I can spend more time studying poetry, writing poems, sending them out, and having them rejected, bahaha!) Until last fall I was doing most of it myself, and I can't lie, some days I would just sit on a hay bale and cry. (I think all farmers with animals do that once in a while!) But most days, it's a blast, even though I now smell constantly of goat.
And this summer, our young friend Bethany will be back to help out! She's a great girl who has a really nice way with the animals.
And speaking of amazing, there's Luc. Gordon and I really don't know what we'd do without Luc. He's here most days lately, working on a million things. He has been renovating our old granary, but he also just put in all our new goat fencing, built GOAT MOUNTAIN, is fixing up our barn (and built our box stalls in 2014) and a million other things. Nothing is too much trouble for him. He pretty much does it all around here. He once did a faceplant in the mud trying to catch Button the pig for me! Now that's sacrifice.
Luc and two of his goat friends, with the beautiful granary in the background.
Whenever I ask Luc for help with anything, his response is always "No problem!" Gordon and I really don't know what we'd do without his help, or the help of his partner Debbie, who is not just my hairdresser but also my awesome friend. Luc and Debbie are the kind of people who will stay with you in a cold barn all day into midnight (on a Saturday!), have a picnic on hay bales, then help you and your vet through a goat's terrible labour, dead kids, and C-section. I don't know if you can appreciate how special that is, but let me tell you, it's damned amazing.
Okay, before I cry, I need to go do some beekeeping. But please, if you would like to come to Homes with Woofs, we would LOVE to see you here! It's going to be a great day. If you're on Facebook and haven't checked out the Bee Meadow Farm page yet, here's the link.