We hopped in the van this weekend with the kids and the dogs and drove up to Flagstaff, which is in the mountains 2 hours north of Phoenix, for a overnight with some dear friends. They live on 10 acres and have a hobby farm with goats and chickens and sometimes pigs and turkeys. Oh and kids - 2 boys Gunnar's age.
My kids are urban kids. Always have been. We've lived in the city their whole lives on small lots with close neighbors and usually with all of our needs within a walk or short bike ride. They have to stay in the yard, or have permission to stray off our street. Imagine their delight and confusion when we shooed them out the door bundled up in coats and pants (which Annika doesn't own, by the way. I had to make a pair before we left) and told them to go have fun. They traipsed around all day yesterday.
they played with goats
they worked on the fort in progress, taking a break on the rooftop deck
They watched goats be milked, gathered eggs, and went for a ride in the Polaris. They had an AMAZING weekend.
The dogs had a great time too. They galloped around and made friends with the resident dogs. We let them out to see how they did with the goats and chickens. Bad idea. Really bad. Their herding instincts rose to the surface, and they were going to whip that chicken flock into shape. Stat. Gunnar tackled Charlie, Jeff grabbed Luna, and we hustled them back into the house in shame. So much for my little dream of a couple of chickens in our back yard. Sigh...
As for me, I learned how to make mozzarella from their goat milk, ogled the freezers full of meat and fruit, and spend the whole time talking with Gabrielle about the things we both love - knitting, quilting, kids, sustainable living, food. Such a great time.
As we drove home in the pelting snow, Gunnar sighed. "Mom. Nothing at home even seems fun anymore. Not compared to that."
I agree, buddy. I totally agree.