Blog Post November 27, 2013
Greetings from Aspengrove!
With 2013 quickly coming to the end, I find myself wondering where the time went. Another year gone and we are gearing up for 2014.
We are managing to get a lot of help with the maintenance on the farm with helpers from Helpx and Wwoof. I am not able to do all that I used to and this works out for us as well as the helpers. We even managed to get a little garden in this year, something that I haven’t had since I started up with the horse camps. The helpers are basically young people from all different countries wanting to explore Canada and learn and experience Canadian life and culture by helping out on farms. It has been a great experience for us as well, as we are also learning about how they live. This is actually inspiring me to want to do some traveling myself once I totally retire although I am not sure when that will be. We are getting lots of invitations.
The 2014 schedule is now up and we are again limiting our weeks to half the summer. We recommend you reserve your space early to ensure a spot as we have started getting registrations already. This works out well for all as we are still able to experience a bit of the summer ourselves.
The 2013 camps were a great success. We filled up and had to turn some students away. We again leased some of the same horses as in previous years and were also able to get a few new ones. Angie, Danielle and Nicola helped with the schooling and conditioning as well as Claire who came a bit early for her summer counselor’s work. We also had a few of our helpers ride as well, as some of them had horse experience. We did acquire some new horses, even though I was hoping not to add any more to my herd. I have to watch myself as it is very easy to get carried away as this is such a nice place for horses to live. I would like to welcome Roscoe, Annie, Sherman and George to the herd. I was hoping to get pictures but as usual I didn’t and now they don’t look their best with the long and wooly coats. I hope to get some in the spring; otherwise you will just have to wait until summer to see them all. We did use Annie and Sherman but the other two arrived too late to use.
Danielle lent us her goat Wilbert to attend our summer camps and to give Lulu some stimulation and she certainly got that. As he was a very young goat he had way to much energy and just plain wore her out. I think she was happy when the camps were over and she had some peace and quite. I lent her to another goat farm for the winter so she can have the company of other goats.
We had to put our brown dog Purdy down this year which was a very sad time for us as well as her friend Sadie. I had no idea that dogs can grieve that much. You will all remember Purdy as the brown lab and the non stop ball chaser. She had a great life with all the campers throwing the ball for her. Ball chasing was what she like to do best. We soon got a replacement, Kaiah, a 3 year old black German Shepard/Lab cross, who also likes to play ball.
One of our horse boarders, Diane is now permanently living here and helping us look after the horses. They all love her and look forward to the extra attention she gives them. Welcome to Aspengrove Diane. Diane also took some great photos this summer during the camps. We should have them up on the web site shortly.
In closing, I would like to thank all the counselors and my granddaughter Meagan for the good job they did, keeping everything running smoothly, making the camps the success that they are. Special thanks to my daughters Alisha for her cooking and baking as well as helping out with everything and anything else that needs looking after, schedules, staff training etc., also Angie for the excellent job teaching, schooling and training the horses as well as horse/camper selections. We always get a lot of feedback on her expertise. Thanks Danielle for fitting us in with your nursing schedule and teaching the extra groups. Thanks to all the wwoofers and helpx travelers who helped us keep up with the maintenance of the farm, and Lorne who puts up with it all and is in charge of the overall running of all the maintenance. Also thanks to the horse people who let us use their horses. We had a great bunch this year. It sure helps when we have well trained, safe horses.
We look forward to another successful year in 2014. Enjoy yourselves during the holiday season and hope to see you all next year.