Air Force Reservist & Alpaca Rancher. Makes total sense…

I was gone on military orders over SEVEN MONTHS in 2018. 


Seven. Months.

I just got back in February of this year, and I’m writing this on a plane going for another couple weeks. We may have enough time to get through shearing before I have to leave again. Hopefully that’s the last one for 2019!

I am grateful to still be able to serve as an Air Force Reservist. I enjoy working with a team again to get the mission done. There is a part of my soul fulfilled by it. That, or I have split-personality disorder. 

However the rest of my soul is restored and fulfilled by my family and my farm. 

It has been a challenging year discovering just how much I can live in both worlds. I have a little (okay, more than a little) anxiety and excitement for the future as our family has several opportunities which may cause big changes. Some of which are outside of our control. I’m trying not to dwell on the uncertainties and just cross that bridge when we get there.

For now, one thing is for certain: I could not have been gone a fraction of that time without being blessed with amazing people taking care of the ranch. One of the top most awesome things to happen to the ranch is our new Office Manager and Communications Director: Serena. (Side note: ideas for less stuffy staff titles are totally welcome). If you have liked our social media feeds, website changes, and newsletters, it’s all thanks to this incredible woman. If you ordered something from us online, she was the one that shipped it to you. She kept the business going while my husband kept the animals alive. Her smiling face was joined by Jill and Shannon at Lexington Farmers’ Market where you wonderful people continued your support by taking home some alpaca awesomeness. We had a fantastic first intern, Gracie, that I sadly only had a couple days with before I had to leave. We opened our “PR department” with my friend Jennifer. And our longest “staff” family member, Ranch Hand and Ranch Camp Counselor extraordinaire, Anna, watched over the ranch so my family could actually enjoy a vacation together.

People used to assume I had staff (because what crazy person would do all this alpaca ranching-entrepreneur-artisan-stay-at-home mom thing all by themselves?! <insert crazy-lady laugh here>). Despite unfruitful (desperate) searching in the past for the right people to help grow the ranch, this year God not only threw me a bone, but a freakin five-star champagne dinner! I have PEOPLE! That can get in touch with YOUR PEOPLE! WHAT??!!!

Even more than the much needed help, I am so grateful these ladies believe in the purpose behind our Ranch. They also find restoration and fulfillment here. Which reaffirms that purpose in my heart as well. My husband and I created this ranch because we wanted a life with this purpose for our family. Those blessed friends that have come to help further this purpose have also become family.

So with this big dose of encouragement, we have applications open (click here to apply) for Farmers’ Market, Ranch Camp Counselor, and YOGA INSTRUCTOR (we FINALLY have 2 applicants for the last one!!! Stay tuned via the newsletter, Facebook, and Instagram for Alpaca Vinyasa dates!!!)

I am grateful to still be a part of my Air Force family. But I am super giddy to be growing our River Hill family! We still have a lot of growing to do! (Hopefully not growing up though. Totally overrated 😉