Updated: Dec 13, 2022
As we go into the holidays, we are all stressed. Who will we visit? What will get for everyone? Are we focused enough on the birth of Christ? It's a whirlwind, and then, just like that, the toys and decorations get put away, the food is all eaten, family members go home and pick up their busy lives right where they left off.
If you're considering the "perfect gift" for someone this holiday, consider a gift of experience. If you're anything like me, you'll want to know what's so special about visiting a farm. Well, there are lots of wonderful things, but this farm in particular was extra special for a few reasons. As your new local "expert" to living my best homeschool life, I will go ahead and nudge you to go ahead and gift a loved one with a farm experience. Here's why...
You Can Pet the Pigs!
I recently visited What the Farm in Virginia Beach, VA, and I was so pleasantly surprised to find out that we were able to actually hang out with the pigs. Ginger was def our "fave" perhaps due to her massive size, silly temperament, and gentle snuggles. The owner, Farmer Chris, was really patient with the kids and taught us all so much about pigs and farming. As we were visiting, I noticed something really special about the pigs--they were SO HAPPY!
I saw the pigs at What the Farm and noticed immediately the stark difference in their behavior and demeanor versus the behavior of the pigs I typically see at the state fair or the zoo. They were literally frolicking in the woods together! I swear that I could see and feel them smiling. They were talking, begging for belly rubs and pets, and just wanted to be with each other. Doesn't this sound kinda like best friends? I think so, too!
Snacks, Crafts, & Story Time
After we came in and washed up, we were greeted by Farmer Kelly and her mama. They were waiting for us with a sweet treat of homemade Chex mix. We snacked while Farmer Kelly taught us all about pigs! We learned vocabulary terms, what pigs eat, how they live, and that we can use every part for something, like making candles. We used the melted pig lard to pour candles into jars (or vessels), and we added a bit of essential oils to give them a nice Christmas-y smell. We left with full bellies and full brains!
Here's How to Visit
The best news? Farmer Chris, Farmer Kelly, and Sweet Mama run four or more classes for children each month. The classes are only $20 for 1.5 hours of full-fledge farm fun! Besides the farm animals: chicken, beef, pork, and lambs, you can get the big picture of farming by taking one of their culinary or soil-based classes. After class, stop by a local waterfront park like Munden Point Park to have a picnic while the kids burn off some energy.
Got a little one? He or she can tag along with you to watch. Have more than one kid? You can pay $99 for the month, and all of your kids can visit twice! There are also going to be summer camps!
Although I wish I was getting paid to sponsor this wonderful family farm, I am just a homeschooling mom who enjoyed this wonderful visit. Please take a visit to their website for a schedule of upcoming events!