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Merry Christmas from myself and Chris

So that was Christmas 2020 and what a busy one it was at the farm and it's not all over yet. Though before I go onto all of that I just wanted to say that whatever you did and wherever you were, I hope some Christmas magic managed to reach you. It certainly reached Farmer Casey who, for the first time, was super excited that Santa had been and is still opening his presents slowly because he's stopping to enjoy them all.

Going back to the farm, it's mostly been about Christmas preparations this week. I'm not just talking about wrapping presents and getting in some Christmas treats, though we do have a lot of animals to get treats for. There was a lot of planning for Chris and Helie to have time to see the family they could on Christmas Day too with a lot of work to do in advance. Even then, Chris was up super early and went to bed very late on Christmas Day so that he could check on the animals and give Oreo some extra walks. A big thank you to their amazing neighbours who so kindly offered to fill in with animal care duties too so that Chris, Helie and Caroline could be away from the farm.

It's quite normal to be busy doing essential farm work ahead of Christmas Day, though one thing that's been new for our farm this year, other than the social restrictions, are the shoutouts. It's the first year we've offered personalised Christmas shoutouts and they were all filmed by Chris and Caroline this week. I really don't know how they found the time but a huge well done to them for creating some amazing messages. Thank you to everyone who planned a shoutout with us, we were so happy to help celebrate Christmas with you and we've loved your feedback. Don't forget that although we might be past the Christmas shoutouts now, you can still get in touch with us at any time to arrange a shoutout for almost any occasion as long as you give us a bit of notice.

Of course the other new addition to our farm Christmas is our pantomime. I know Chris has been busy planning this for a while now and I can only imagine what he has up his sleeve. Thankfully he's had some amazing help from volunteers Amelia and Dave to put together a really fantastic stage area. We really hope you can join Chris and his pantomime team on Tuesday 29 December at 13:00 (GMT) for what promises to be a unique performance. I'm very, very sad to say that I'm not sure I can be there, but I will be there in spirit cheering them on as best I can.

A very special Christmas dinner

While the team have been busy looking after the animals and sharing as many Christmas smiles as possible, we of course have the animals themselves. On the whole they've been quite quiet this week making sure they behave for Santa, though they've still made the week exciting as always. It's especially exciting as our young peacock Bowie has been displaying for the very first time. Though Bowie is around two years old, he's actually only just reaching maturity and growing his very own set of beautiful tail feathers. I really hope I can catch a Bowie display in person with my camera really soon, though thankfully Chris is always ready with his camera in hand too.

We've also had another emu egg from Del taking the total to three. We really don't know if the eggs will hatch or even if the emus will go broody, but we're all looking forward to seeing what happens. For now though, I think it's been a little cold for Rodney and Del as their egg laying is slowing down, though there's still a few egg laying months ahead of them so you never know how many we might get and what might happen. For now though it looks like we'll have a slight break from the new arrivals with the cold weather sticking with us and no signs of piglets with Marlene and Trigger. Though piglets would have been a super cute addition they are a lot of work and require a lot of feed, so we'll enjoy the extra time with the rest of our animals for now.

We certainly need the extra time with our birds still being in lockdown, all of the special rush hours we shared with you over Christmas with our birds were filmed especially for you in advance. At least our last duck additions called Matthew, Mark, Luke and John have a little extra freedom now they are out of quarantine and safe to mix with the rest of our animals and have a swim.

Now though, it's time to prepare for the new year, new projects and our coming pantomime so I'll leave you with a thank you and this week I want to say a big thank you to Chris, Caroline and Helie. This Christmas they all went above and beyond to take the best possible care of our animals, spread as much Christmas joy as possible across the world and be there for Casey and his cousins. They really are amazing people and I can't thank them enough for all they do. Having the three of them join us for Christmas and watching Casey enjoy every bit of their company was the best Christmas gift ever and I can't thank them enough for all of the work it took to make it possible. It's a Christmas I'll remember as truly special for years to come.

Join me next week for my own 2020 review of the farm, though until then enjoy a look back at some of our Christmas preparations and keep safe.

Kara, Casey and Teddy


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