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And so, it is done.

Like all good things, this too must come to an end. The hot days of summer, are over. The leaves of the trees are now vibrant with beautiful color as the days shorten. The hay fields turn dormant preparing for the upcoming winter. And so, it is done. There will be no more hay for us to cut this year. We worked hard all summer long to crop as much as we could for the horses here depending on us. We put in countless hours cutting, raking, tetting, baling, stacking. But, it was not just us. This was not an undertaking we could have completed without help. From the farmer who let us lease his land to the people who ran for supplies. Each person who helped, was needed. Every task that was performed, was necessary. There were no “small” jobs. There was not one helper we didn’t need. To manage, cut, bale, stack, etc. the amount of hay that we now have, took an army of incredible people doing whatever it is that they could do to help.

So, as we went to bring home the tractor and return the last hay wagon to its owner, I looked at the beautiful fall colors in the trees, the corn still standing to dry, and the fields that we cut that will now lie untouched under the snow for the next few months. And I could not help but reminisce on this experience over the last few months and to once again find myself humbled by the kindness and generosity of our community, our supporters, and of course, our local farmers. The people who dropped everything they were doing to come out and get the hay cut, baled, and stacked while the getting was good. The people who took time out of their own lives to help, even though there was no reason they had to, other than the simple fact that they wanted to. The people who stacked hundreds and hundreds of bales in that barn on the hottest of days. The people who offered advice, equipment, and the most valuable gift of all: their time. Why? For the horses.

Many of these people don’t own horses. Many of them don’t want horses. Some of them, don’t even like horses. (Weird, right?! Lol) But, they love animals and they don’t want to see them suffer. They support what we do because it is the right thing to do. They help us, so we can help the horses. It is really that simple. They don’t want anything in return. They don’t even ask for anything in return. They are happy just knowing that by helping us, they are helping the horses. They are happy knowing that they helped in whatever way they could. And for them, that is enough.

And so, it is done. There will be no more hay to cut this year and we will not need their help again until next year. But, we won’t forget them. With every bale of hay that we feed, we will think of them. With every nicker from the horses as we bring them this delicious hay, we will think of them. This hay would not be here if it wasn’t for their help. And so, we would like to give a ginormous thank you to each and everyone of you. In no particular order: Doug Aspen, Lenny Bowe, Jon Tuschl, Wade Aspen, Pat Peterson, Roxanne Sward, Adraic Bethel, Marisa Prince, Sam McCoy, Trevor Larson, Chuck Schindler, Rich Lofthus, Matt Larson, Edwin Martinez, Tim Lauffer, Dale Bergeson, and of course, the Krall family. There are simply not enough words to express our gratitude. The horses’ bellies will be happy and full because of you all. So, thank you. From the bottom of our hearts. You are all rockstars in our book!