Today’s Word from Deacon Amy…

“For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

My daughters are busy preparing for the Whidbey Island Fair. After not having a fair last year, it seems all the more exciting this year. They are busily training, bathing, grooming, and prepping their animals. They are also studying, learning, and preparing themselves. It is a lot of work, but it is something that we all look forward to all year long. The fair is the culmination of their 4H year. Most of the decisions that are made, and the hours that are put into their project animals throughout the year, are directed toward the fair.

Both girls started showing dairy goats ten years ago. They’ve both also added Pack Goats to their scope of interest. We have learned a lot about pack goats in the past few years. These goats tend to have a more sturdy build than a typical dairy goat. The intention is to have them carry a pack, up to about 25% of their bodyweight, while hiking through the trails. It turns out that goats make pretty great pack animals. They’re very sure-footed, most have fairly good dispositions, and they seem to enjoy the adventures.

When my kids started showing pack animals, they used a couple of the dairy goats that we already had. Recently, Ava has been thinking about investing in a new goat, specifically for use as a pack goat. She’s put a lot of thought into what type of goat she wants, the body characteristics that she’s looking for, the size, age, and temperament of animal that will be just right for her pack shows.

While she was still making plans, an incredible opportunity came her way. I had a couple contact me because they are moving out of the country and need to find good homes for their goats before they leave. It turns out that one of these goats is pretty much exactly what Ava has been dreaming of. She’s a very sweet goat with an excellent conformation for a pack animal. She’s not skittish, she can walk and climb over anything, and she is kind, too. As a bonus, she comes with a lovely older gentleman pasture-mate who will be a great addition to our herd. Ava was thrilled when I mentioned the possibility of bringing this pair home. When we went out to meet them, it was love at first sight. Ava couldn’t quit smiling for the rest of the evening.

Esmee came home to our farm this week. The move was emotional for her human companions; it is obvious that they care deeply for their animals. They delivered her to us so that they could see where she’ll be living. They got to meet all of our other goats, and the dogs who protect them. They got to see their climbing structures and toys, and they got to watch my daughters interact with their beloved pets. They were content that this will be a good fit for their sweet goats. We are thrilled to have them join our herd.

I just love these serendipitous events. Ava had dreams and plans, and this family had a need to find a good home for their furry friends. Luckily for all of us, Ava’s plans and their needs fit together nicely. Esmee and her friend, Chocco, will live out the rest of their years as members of Happy Tails Farm. A happy next chapter for all involved.

Deacon Amy