I sit here looking out my window as my goats munch on a tree that fell in our backyard and I reflect on how much has changed in the past 20 years..... Not much has stayed the same with the exception of my love for my goats and the ever constant Dayton Fair. This is a fair I begged to attend as a kid, my mom had attended in her childhood, and I had visited many times as a child before we became exhibitors. In 2001 my parents and maternal grandmother came together and caved.... They agreed to take me and two horses to the fair and I was in Heaven! This was the beginning to what has been a constant in my life. Every year, even if I was living four plus hours away, I made the trip to the little sleepy town of Dayton PA... and this was like coming home. I step back into the familiarity, of people, places and a schedule that I only get to experience once per year....and it is a wonderful experience.
Even though preparing for the fair is an absolute labor of love it is absolutely worth it. Anyone, that knows moving two horses, seven goats, two people and all of the feed, food, equipment and clothing that goes along with being away for a week at the fair knows a ton of time, preparation, packing, planning, unpacking and cleaning go into it. Even as I cursed it under my breath as I prepared and swore it would be our last fair, this all dissolved by day 1 of the fair...... T
here is something so comforting and nostalgic about our fair that I love, it is part of my summer tradition that I hope continues for many years to come. It is also a beautiful opportunity to spend a full seven days with the people and animals that mean the most to me... No other forum allows my parents, sister and my husband to be on vacation and together for a full eight days....
Where as it is fun to show our animals and do well, the fair is much more than that. Its where my adult sister and I go back to being kids, at our fair showing our horses, cleaning stalls and enjoying each other's company! This does always mark the end of summer for me, this is the last show for the horses and goats that we attend, and is when my Icelandic horse starts to shed. This in itself is bittersweet, I love the warmer weather, outside activities and busy schedule that comes with spring and summer, but it is good to slow down in the fall and spend more time working on projects at our home.
This fall season also means that I am looking towards breeding season! I actually have on my to do list a "buck beauty day" In my terms this is a dedicated day where I will be extremely smelly! I will wash all three of my bucks, check for external parasites, check for urine scald, trim hooves, treat any hoof rot, deworm, copper bolus and ensure the boys are up to date on their Replamin Gel! This will not only ensure that they are in the best shape when they are collected later this year, but also when they go to breed the girls, they are healthy and able to produce the healthiest kids I can possibly get!
I hope you all are having a spectacular week and I would love to hear about family traditions that you have below! Happy Goating!