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Perfect Timing!  Llama Llama Camp 2020

By:  Pat Pieri

Caspian and Nokomis pricked up their ears and steadily gazed out to the end of the

long driveway. The two llamas had only been at Harvest Hope Farm for two days,

since arriving from their old farm, and they were about to become the main attraction

for the wonderful week ahead. Perfect timing.


Miss O’Leary had prepared daily lessons; Mrs. Kotrba had gathered books, bags,

coloring pages, and snacks; the Kotrba kids were ready to help; and Mrs. Pieri had

sewn the llama-themed face masks that would be most useful in this unusual summer

of 2020.


The crunch of car tires on the long driveway announced the arrival of the first Llama

Llama Campers that warm, sunny August morning. The children were happy to finally

be out and about, socializing with other kids. The glorious weather meant they were

able to safely enjoy working and playing outside. More perfect timing.


Each day had a comforting rhythm. They gathered together at the picnic tables and

listened as Miss O’Leary read the day’s Llama Llama book from the wonderful series

author, Anna Dewdney. She encouraged the kids to think about Llama Llama’s

challenges in the stories and consider the ways in which they might handle the same

challenge. There were lots of good ideas shared on how to take care of pets, people,

and even bullies.


As Caspian and Nokomis munched on their hay on the other side of the fence, they

watched the kids sanitize their hands and munch on their snacks. Then, it was time to

explore Harvest Hope Farm, starting with the llamas! The Kotrba kids made sure that

each child got to groom, feed, and lead a llama each day. Those llamas accompanied

them all over the farm. Did you know that llamas like to watch as the chickens eat

bugs, corn and weeds, too? They watched as the kids fed the weeds to the chickens

and visited the coop to collect some eggs.


The llamas walked with them as the kids met the sheep, the miniature horse, the pigs,

and the cats and kittens. Then, they stayed by the fence and munched grass while the

kids headed over to the bridge by the pond and up into the woods. There was so much

to see and Miss O’Leary had a scavenger hunt sheet ready for the kids at the log

benches by the fire pit. Now they could record the flowers, trees, berries, birds, and

bugs they found on their trek into the forest. Perfect timing again!


Each day was a great adventure! The kids got to visit the garden boxes that were cared

for by the older Farm Campers. They swung on swings, and climbed ladders to the

wooden fort. They buried themselves in the cool kernels of corn in the corn box and

stretched out on blankets to read the Llama Llama books again.

Mrs. Pieri brought some of the wool that was shorn from the Harvest Hope Farm’s

special sheep and the kids learned how to card the soft wool into rollags ready for

spinning into yarn.


Each day, the kids said goodbye to Caspian, Nokomis, and the kids and grownups at

Harvest Hope Farm and headed home to share their adventures. On the very last day of

Llama Llama Camp, the kids learned that Mrs. Kotrba was at the hospital with the new

baby, Michael, who arrived the night before. Perfect timing.


The kids and grownups of Harvest Hope Farm would love to see you next summer.

Wouldn't that be perfect timing?

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