F&Ccows For those of you who have wandered down the path to our back land, expecting to be greeted by our team of young oxen, you will have been surprised by an empty barn, and probably left scratching your head wondering…did they run away?! Actually, far from running away, they are now luxuriating in their new accommodations at the Payne Homestead in Ashfield. Thank you Saphira, Johanna, Katharine and Kim for graciously offering your new “old” barn to house this team over the winter.

Why have they left Hartsbrook you may ask? After some soul searching it became clear that continuing their winter care at Hartsbrook was an arduous task at best; hauling buckets of water down to them twice a day, mucking out a shed in icy snowy conditions, not having a 4-wheel drive vehicle available around the clock, makes such tasks in cold and snow almost impossible. Memories of last winter seemed very real as the Land Stewardship Committee figured out how best to tackle the logistics of their winter care.

Thus in early January, on a very, very cold and windy day, Caleb loaded his team into Mike’s livestock trailer, along with a whole heap of hay, and headed up to the Paynes. We were greeted by the 7th Grade ready to help offload hay bales and stack them carefully into the hay barn, while Caleb and Mike led the team into their new winter accommodation. It is what we call team-work…and it is a true testament to the spirit of the 7th Grade that when a call goes out for help from our Farmstead, they are ready and able to pitch in. This class has become known as my Go-To team, whether hauling hay bales off Mike’s trailer, or pitching in to deal with an unexpected emergency. Thank you 7th Grade and Thank you to the Paynes!

Nicki Robb
Land Stewardship Program Director