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Hilltop Welcoming Service

Articles written by Diana Frieling

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Goodbyes

I hate them. Here at the ranch they happen. There are times when no matter how hard you try, how much you spend, in the end, you must say goodbye. Over the past few years, I have embraced and let go...

 

Listen, That is the Sound of Progress

Have you ever just sat and listened? I mean, really listened to the sounds around you? Here at the ranch, we have amazing sounds. Earl, the emu, makes a sound like a chain saw trying to start. The bab...

 

Ember

Something in the air is different. All the animals of the forest are restless. What is that smell? Momma puts her nose in the air and sniffs: "Smoke. Run Ember! Run!" And it begins. Running and...

 

Deer encounters

At Windswept Ranch, this time of year, we get more calls about fawns from Bear Valley than from any other area in Tehachapi. I think that just shows how much Bear Valley's residents care about their...

 

Our National Mammal

Some animals are just special. That perfectly describes Valentine. Who knew you could love a bison? But from the moment I saw Valentine, it has been that way. It was early February when I got the...

 

Reality check

Had a harsh reality check to remind me of just how tough ranching can be this morning when I turned on my computer and went to check out facebook. A friend of mine in Oregon found one of her reindeer...

 

Limping to the end

Another season of tours is coming to an end and I can’t believe how fast it has gone by. We are always so excited when the season begins, but by the end, I think all of us breathe a sigh of relief. We try every year to add something to make it...

 

"Can we all just get along?"

I am not sure how many of you remember when Rodney King said those famous words. It was a time of tremendous strife, just like today. Los Angeles had burst into flames and violence. Racial tensions were boiling over. Can’t stop thinking about how...

 

Lost, Windswept style

It happens almost every Saturday: I get calls from people who are lost. They just can't find us. Most times, they just haven't traveled far enough south on Tehachapi Willow Springs Rd. But...

 

Best intentions?

I have seen so many stories in the news lately centering around animal rights, it kind of leaves me wondering who these advocates are and what their motives might be. PETA (People for the Ethical...

 

Saying goodbye to Walter

Goodbyes are never easy. I've lost a lot of animals over the years, and each one brings its own pain: Oscar, the white fallow deer whose presence changed my life. Wesley, my first bouvier dog who...

 

It's that time of the year again

I walk the ranch every morning and every night just to check and make sure all is well with the critters. It is a peaceful time and I enjoy the quiet time to visit with my friends in the animals. This morning baby rabbits were scampering everywhere a...

 

Where did you get that?

It is one of the most common questions we get here at the ranch. The answer varies with the critter, so I thought I would share a few stories with you all. I didn't start off with a lot of animals. I...

 

A Blank Canvas

I can't tell you how many nights I spend here at the ranch sitting on the front deck and just stargazing. I am totally in awe of this world we live in. It makes me wonder what it was like before...

 

Sometimes You Need an Excuse...

...to celebrate! We have so many holidays on our calendar. There is actually a World Camel Day! It happens on the longest day of the year: June 22 when the heat is in full swing. We just passed the...

 

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