BY MELISSA ARIAS
President and Founder
We are working hard to make life sweet for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families in Los Alamos and Northern New Mexico. We need your support. We host the annual, Lemonade Living “Our Night to Remember” Dinner and Dance, created by Christina Stafford. We are developing a Farm-to-Kitchen Jobs Training Program. And we have a long-term goal of a residential campus. The farm is being assembled at North Mesa Stables. And the kitchen is Rose Chocolatier chocolate shop, where Robyn Collom’s Living Skills students from Los Alamos High School and adults with developmental disabilities are able to learn job skills.
The Pilot Program for our farm school was held in 2018. We won a blue ribbon at the Los Alamos County Fair for our Candied Meyer Lemons! We also walked in the Rodeo Parade with Dianne Wilburn’s goats! And, we participated in the North Mesa Stables Stroll and the Luminaria Walk. It was a fun start to our farm program!
In 2019, we acquired use of the Historic Grant Homestead Cabin at North Mesa Stables, with the help of Georgia Strickfaden, a dear friend to Lemonade Living, and Bel Hill, who was born in the cabin. We participated in our second Rodeo Parade and Stables Stroll. We installed a goat enclosure with the help of Louis and Ruth Schulte, Garth and Lisa Reader and many others. We hosted a guest goat herd and got our start at learning goat care. We plan to start a small sheep herd for our coming fiber arts program. We received our first donation of raw wool and our first spinning wheel. Marguerite and Andy McClay generously donated the Rose Chocolatier chocolate and pastry shop for our jobs training program! And a fundraiser at the Sheriff’s Posse Cowboy Breakfast helped us get started at Rose Chocolatier.
We accomplished many things in 2020. We made it through our first year with Rose Chocolatier. It took determination, wonderful donors, loyal employees, great trainees and super LAHS volunteers. We started a goat herd in May! The first baby goats were born in July and August. Campers from The Gifted Horse and volunteers from All Individuals First were the first of our cooperative partners to visit the new herd and babies.
This year, we’re ready to focus on the farm program. We are truly excited and thankful that Shelly Cross, owner of the Lujan Homestead Cabin, has offered us the opportunity to purchase the cabin for our program. We’ve contacted individuals with an interest in the cabin, in an effort to include them on the project and build a cooperative. We will offer educational programs with our nonprofit partners, beginning in May. We will partner with volunteer teachers from Los Alamos National Laboratory and Los Alamos County on water, soil, air, and crop topics as they relate to homesteading on the Pajarito Plateau, both historically and today. The farm program will include Freedom Rose Organic Goat Dairy (Lemonade is a guest at this stable lot.), Ashley’s Fiber Arts at the Grant Cabin (Lemonade is a guest at this stable lot.), and Lemonade Living Homestead Farm and Ranch School program at the Lujan Cabin (We need your help to make this Lemonade’s home at the stables.). With help from members of the Los Alamos Historical Society, the farm program will include docent training for individuals with developmental disabilities. And we will open the Lujan Cabin to visitors on Sheriff’s Posse, Cowboy Breakfast Sundays. Each component of the farm program offers therapeutic, livestock and educational opportunities for our community.
The cabin price is $18,000. It will take just 100 people donating $180 each, or 10 donors at $1,800 each, to cover the cost of the cabin purchase. After the purchase is completed in April, we will begin preservation and restoration activities.
- $180 Donor – Name Engraved on Pathway Brick or Stone
- $1,800 Donor – Name Engraved on Educational Area Flagstone
- $18,000 Angel Donor – Recognition Plaque and Donation Story Video
Go-fund-me, https://gofund.me/79c44e3c .
Donate button at www.lemonadeliving.org for a one-time or monthly donation with credit card or PayPal.
Check by mail to Lemonade Living, Project Y, 150 Central Park Square, Los Alamos, New Mexico, 87544 (preferred method of donation).
Thank you to all who support Lemonade Living.