Only five days after Schnucki had her first lamb, Wilma had hers. It really surprised us as there were signs only briefly before Wilma went into labor around 1:30pm. Although we considered ourselves kind of experienced now after being there for Schnucki five days ago, things were a lot more difficult and scary this time. Wilma had a very hard time during labor, although her lamb was much smaller than Schnucki's. In fact, it was so small and fragile that we were very afraid of how things would turn out. It didn't get up nearly as quickly as Schucki's lamb and it took almost two hours before the first sucking attempts were made - which didn't work. We were very concerned as the first five to six hours are very important. After those hours, the milk doesn't provide the necessary "ingredients" for the newborn anymore. It was also a very cold day and the little one was shivering a lot despite the two heat lamps. The vet came over and was optimistic though. We took his advice and kept trying to get the lamb to drink. Wyman even had to milk Wilma and fed her lamb with one of Glenny's former bottles. By the end of the day, the first successful yet Brief sucking attempts were made. We were still very concerned the next few days until the Little girl seemed to have been out of the weather. We are also collecting name suggestions for her.
All of our animals can be sponsored. Our sheep can each be sponsored for 3€/3.50USD per month. Here is the PayPal link. Sponsors are listed on our website next to a photo of the sponsored animal - unless this is not wanted.
February 6th, 2018 was also a very sad day. One life began, another one ended. When we wanted to close in the chickens for the night, we noticed that two chickens were missing: Bertha and Henrietta. We finally found Bertha who was walking around our property, kind of being lost. But we couldn't find Henrietta. Wyman joked that it was hard to find a white chicken in the snow. Andrea then looked at Henrietta's favorite spot, the manure pile. And there she was, dead with bleeding wounds. It must have been the fox. We later heard that foxes are now also hunting much earlier during the day as they are hungry during these cold days. We felt so guilty that we didn't keep Henrietta safe and decided that from now on the chickens' freedom had to be limited. We moved them to a provisional home inside the barn with a very small enclosure attached until the new big one is finished. Today we wanted to introduce all our chickens to Johnny, their first rooster. We had to postpone this. May Henrietta rest in peace. Just a day before we had also lost our dwarf hamster Pino. Both Henrietta and Pino were buried a few days later.
The first baby on our Pony Farm was born on February 1st, 2018! Our sheep Schnucki had her first baby lamb. Around 6pm, Andrea said that the lamb might be coming soon ("soon" meant within a few days), but only 5 hours later Schnucki went into labor. Her "little" boy was born at 11:33pm, the labor only lasted about 30 minutes. We were very excited and a little scared when everything started (to say the least), but were so happy when things turned out fine. The vet came the next morning to check on Mama and child and said that the lamb was not only a boy, but a big boy (Jolson fans will get this). Very soon he will be named, we are collecting suggestions from the horse riding kiddies.
All of our animals can be sponsored. Each of our sheep can be sponsored for 3€/3.50USD per month. Here is the PayPal link.
It took a long time, but it is finally done (or at least a start). The roof of both our house and barn needs to be replaced. We had planned to take a loan out for the work, but since Wyman doesn't have the German citizenship and his ID needs to be valid for more than two years (Wyman has to renew his residence title every two years), it wouldn't work. Since Wyman is the one who provides the biggest income for our household, we could only take a loan out in his name. And we thought owning a house and having a regular income would be enough! This put us in a very difficult position, as the only source of income from our property - as little as it is - comes from Mirco who has rented parts of our barn and the fields. We have an interest in keeping him and the pony farm here, but the repair work has to be done. We had to start with the barn instead of with the house, because one major support beam was already broken and had to be replaced immediately. Andrea's father still lives in the big house, so we also cannot generate some money by renting out a room or two to holiday guests - that do show interest frequently (having a pony farm in the backyard kind of does the deal). Andrea canceled her pension insurance to partly pay off Wyman's medical debt and pay for a foil that was placed on the roof to Keep the rain and snow out.
Andrea's father did step in eventually and paid for the necessary woodwork which had been neglected for almost 30 years. This is only the first step, and we are continuing to do what we can do to make this place more attractive to people in order to generate some money (for example the idea of "adopting" one of our animals and offering "farm days" for children and seniors. Eventually we want to organize birthday parties, offer tractor rides etc. Things are not going so fast as Wyman has a chronic lung disease which makes it impossible for him to do a lot of physical work. Andrea is looking for a job and she went on several internships further away the past months and also finished her degree. But, step by step we are moving in the right direction.
If you'd like to help us with a small donation, please visit our gofundme page or donate by PayPal to email@example.com. We can also offer to pay back a loan. Please contact us if you have any suggestions. Thank you so much.
These five little characters were born in the night from the 23rd to the 24th of January 2018. We picked them up three days later. Serama dwarf chickens originate in Malaysia and are the smallest dwarf chickens in the world. They measure only between 15 and 25 cm and they can reach an age of 8 years. They are usually very tame and trusting animals and therefore appropriate for little children that are looking for an animal to bond with. We cannot tell which one among them is the rooster, or how many roosters there might be, but time will tell. Until very warm spring days, the little ones have to live in our house and also need a heating lamp. Serama dwarf chickens like and need it very warm. Welcome to Northern Germany!
All of our animals can be sponsored. Each dwarf chicken can be sponsored for 2€/2.50USD per month. Every sponsor will be listed on our website, next to their sponsored animal - unless this is not wanted.
Here is the PayPal link.
Many things happened during this first year. Mirco's Pony Farm started with three ponies only: Dolly, Prince and Ronja. Then came Rasputin, Kim and later Wursti and Donner. Also our smaller animals moved in: our chickens, geese, rabbits and recently our two sheep Wilma and Schucki who will each soon have their babies. Andrea and Wyman became the new owners of the property and Mirco made the Pony Farm his only job. Many things are planned for 2018. Stay tuned!
How did the ponies get on our property? In January of 2017, I (Andrea) was looking for a new renter for my father's fields. The previous renter had used it for making hay, but didn't need it anymore as he gave up his farm. On Facebook, I saw a post made by someone who was looking for a field for his three ponies. I contacted him (actually, I thought it was a girl at first, talking about stereotypes), he came over and fell in love with the place. He must have had some imagination to see the potential of the place as my father gave up his sheep farm in the 1990s and everything looked like a mess. Mirco, the 19-year-old renter had big plans: He wanted to start his own horse riding school. Step by step he bought a few more ponies and gave up his apprenticeship as an electrician (which he hated). In November of 2017, Wyman and I took over the property and we became Mirco's landlords. We already owned chickens and geese together, and eventually two pregnant sheep. Our son Glenn gets free horse riding lessons as we help Mirco with his ponies a lot. I also created a website for his business, a Facebook page and a YouTube channel.
We are still trying to make this place look nice, but a lot of repair work has to be done. Things are not easy, especially since Wyman is not healthy and not allowed to be near dust. Other than that, life on a farm is a wonderful and healthy thing, we mainly do it for our son as we had to change plans when we decided not to move to the USA. We are trying to give Glenn a childhood of love and freedom and try to create a big furry and featherly family for him as his own (human) family gets smaller and smaller: His maternal grandmother died in April of 2017, his paternal grandmother whom he never had a chance to meet died in February 2015 and his paternal grandfather whom he also never met died just recently in November of this year. We do not know how long Glenny will have his own father as Wyman suffers from a chronic incurable disease. As an only child, it is a wonderful thing to have kids of different ages to come over regularly, even his girlfriend Martha who takes horse riding lessons together with him.
We are trying to generate some additional income to Wyman's full-time job as an account manager for a US-based financial firm. I recently graduated, but my type of job would very likely be hundreds of kilometers away from home. We are still trying to figure things out. We are also trying to generate some income here on our farm. People can "adopt" animals as we all saved them from the slaughterhouse. But in order to get people to come over and enjoy themselves, we need to fix this place up. The barn roof is a huge problem (the house roof too). We recently seperated as a couple and need to expand our apartment as long as my father stays in the big house. We live in a one-bedroom apartment which is attached to the house. Wyman works from home and has no office, I sleep and work on the couch. Things are not easy, but our main focus is Glenny. Step by step we are trying to make things better.
If you'd like to help us, you can donate to Wyman's cause on gofundme.com or send your support via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
It is this time of the year when the nights are getting colder. Therefore, the chickens and geese now moved into their new winter home for those cold nights. It just got ready, and we hope that the roof will not let too much rain pouring into it.
Our renter Mirco, the "pony man" is trying to set up a nice litte "Stübchen" (snuggery) for his customers. The parents can now sit here waiting for their children to finish their horse riding lessons. It took some time and strength to clean out this room. In the pictures you see Mirco, Wyman and Mirco's friend Julian.
Mother, filmmaker, translator, editor.