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Preparing to Return

I saw a hilarious (and scary true feeling) post scrolling through Pintrest a few nights ago : "2020 is a unique Leap Year. It has 29 days in February, 300 days in March and 5 years in April." I am not one to wish time away. But currently time seems to have stopped. I would not have minded that feeing when I was 19 and first in love. But now it seems like a sick joke. I woke up yesterday CONVINCED it was today. And from what I hear, I am not alone. Days simply merge into one another.

Everyone is living some strange version of their former life. Nothing is completely unfamiliar and nothing feels the same. I am grateful that our local community remains quiet on the Covid-19 front. And I take in the horror of what is happening on a national and world wide level with compassion and prayers. As founder of Cooper's Crossroad, this compassion has driven me to spend gobbs of time thinking of things the organization could do to "touch" our community. Without going into boring details, nothing "fit". I kept feeling as if I were on a trail ride, running into dead ends everywhere, having to turn back. Finally, I realized that we are quite naturally doing exactly what I was seeking. Preparing for an upcoming surge in the need for Farming For Resilience. Let me explain what I mean. First, to inform or remind you, Farming For Resilience is a Cooper's Crossroad program. It is an integrative program to build skills of resilience through outdoor experiences. Quite frankly, we ALL could use an hour of this work weekly. It is such mindful and rewarding work. The "work" often being basic and safe horse care, handling and riding. Prior to Covid 19, we were working with two local elementary schools. As part of the students curriculum, they would come for an hour of horse and farm time. Using the Choose Love model of Courage, Gratitude, Forgiveness and Compassion in action, we integrate farm lessons in with those four important lessons of life. Resilience grows naturally with each session. Sitting here, writing this, I am thinking of the students and hoping that the lessons learned in the program are helping them now. Here is how we are preparing for Farming For Resilience : 1) The horses have had a well deserved break. Now, we begin to bring them back into light, but consistant work. We want them prepared physically to go, when the community opens up! I CAN tell you the horses miss their people. I see them daily, and know them like friends. Every one of them is wondering where everyone went! They miss YOU! 2) Calves have been born, and frolic in the field. Bringing joy to anyone who happens to glance, or stop to watch. These calves will evoke a smile on anyone. A smile = a drop of resilience. 3) During this pause in life, I have taken to the woods, quite literally. Clearing a new set of bridle trails. There is a patch of forest just off our Big Field. I recently gained an appreciation for it, through a friend's discovery of the "Enchanted Forest". Now bridle paths wander in and around big pines, a bubbling brook and a quiet meadow. It is beautiful and close to the farm, safe and scenic. It is idyllic. All creatures are enchanted. Now we can take students out safely, close to home, to feel the joy brought when riding a horse, on a path, in the woods = another drop of resilience. 4) We are training all staff, human and equine, on the new bridle trails. It is new and exciting for all of us! 5) The greenhouse is a delight. Joy in the form of green sprouts = a drop of resilience. All to be shared when the garden grows. 6) Our formal Farming For Resilience curriculum is being finalized. This preparation continues daily. I can't wait to share, once again, Farming For Resilience. Many small drops of resilience will heal and help, particularly in our wobbly world. Stay safe. All my best, ​Christina

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