My husband and I are born and raised in Switzerland, but have lived in different parts of this world - and always with animals.
First we lived in Georgia USA for a couple of years where we had our little privat zoo!
Lamas, 4 horn sheep, Emus, a young Camel and 4 Zebras were runing together up and down till our little privat lake with black swans on it. Then did we also have 2 Pumas (Mountain Lions) that were half tame, 3 young antilopes that besides their food also still wanted twice a day a nice, warm bottle of milk. The beautiful white peacocks always sat on the stable surroundings observing everything.
The main stable though was for our miniature pig breed. We started with Potbellies, and then crossed in colours, so in the end we created a new breed called Julianis and which still now is a registered breed in the US.
Romulus, our little wolf that didn't like driving in the car and would houl with me all the way to work and back.
Our Rottweilers enjoyed beeing at home and running around. Only one Sunday morning we did not realize that they had disapeard for a while, but the next day a friend told us that the sunday church fell out because the priest was not there, but he was up on a tree for hours because some Rottweilers were at the bottom of that tree barking at him!!! He had jogged behind our property and our dogs thought that was very funny!
Our business was called J.G.'s Green thumb - a plant nursery. We started in getting an old house on a main highway and painted it the brightest lemon green possible. Seen as how it was an old house, Jürg thought we'll have to tie it down so it won't fly away in a storm. So we got big ropes and tied it down.
First we started with interior plants, small and big plant-arrangements in the house.
Then we built a little shadehouse in front of it, but it was a lot of work to move the plants in and out every day.
So, after some time we were able to build a huge greenhouse behinde the house, with a wooden deck and a pond in. Behind that tables and tables of indoor plants. Shrubs and bushes were next to it outside, and all the beddingplants (little flowers for planting in the spring) and bulbs etc. were in front of the house.
Jürg started to build ponds, one beautiful one right in front of the business (afterwards there were four of them there).
One really special one he built for Paul, his best friend, and to this day, 22 years later, it is still there, of course with the plants fully grown, and Paul told us that the only thing he has ever had to change was to take out the koi karp fish, because they simply got too big for the pond! One of these days (or within the next 20 years!) we will get a new picture of it!!
When Jürg got the really big job at Perry's property, with ponds, waterfalls, natural stone swimmingpool, creek through the property with walkways with moonlight lightning etc., he needed a lot of stones in all shapes and colours. Very unfortunately do we not have one picture of that job, but the fence he built (with violet coloured lying stones and iron inset and gate) won the first price when the magazin "House and Garden" asked for the most beautiful fence!
Before that big job came, we expanded into the firewood market. Jürg got himself a studabacker 6 wheel drive and went into the woods where he cut down the biggest trees ever. He brought them to the business and there did he cut and splitt it up and we delivered it to the subdivisions after work at night.
But it was not only work and no play, we also enjoyed beeing at home in our little paradise, and when Jürg's daughter Julia came for a visit, us girls took the chance to have some fun.
Due to business did we have to leave our little paradise (in very good hands that took over) and moved to South-America - Ecuador. On our hazienda could we live out our love to animals, we ended up beeing a rescue-station for wild animals that were confiscated from ilegal dealers and brought to us.
At one time I made a count of the animals besides the 8 horses that were allowed to run free over ca.50ha, 16 cows, 20some chicken, and 7 pigs which the workers took care of --- 128 --- from dogs (Rottweiler, Schäfer and Doberman as guardians and Miniature Pinscher as alarm) to cats (they lived more on the roofs and in the trees where the dogs were), 8 big Aras papagay, 6 Amazonas papagay, some smaller versions also, 2 Tucans (which they call Dios te de because that is their call and means God gives you), 4 big turtles, 2 sloths that were hanging around in the bamboo, a little ant-eater, 2 pheasants, some quails, pigeons and small colourful birds, 2 squirrels that were tame and soon started to have family, 3 monkeys, 4 tigrillos (ozelots) and ..........
These are Billy and Jessy, their mother died at birth and so we raised them (in the kitchen) with the bottle.
They always brought us confiscated young deer where they shot the mother and then tried to sell the babies. We raised them and then let them run free in a fenced in property of over 100ha. We also successfully integrated 6 tigrillos back to the wild that came to us in deplorable state, but after getting them back in shape and teaching them to hunt again they were let go free. Even years later did we find traces (droppings) of them on their trails.
The first baby we received we raised in our kitchen, so when he grew he felt the house as his home, and was always very interested in what we ate!
The following deers were raised more appropriately in the stable!
Well, after 13 years of Ecuador we came home to Europe, leaving the animals with friends and in other rescue centers - but taking with us our son, by that time 9 years old. We moved to Germany with 6 suitcases . Giuliano missed his little dog very much, we had to leave her there, with 10 years old and used to the tropics it would not have been fair bringing her. So he got Nena, a dwarf strawhair dackel. Not so long after we drove to Switzerland and got a pinscher-lady Dina to join the family that had grown with our second son Joshua to a 6 head-familly now.
I missed the warmth and sunshine so we moved for a year to Spain, but it was not the right thing for us, so we came back to Germany. But that was not the right thing for us either, and we decided to go up north. Sweden. Now we are here since 2006 and like it a lot. The only problem we still have is with the language! We speak 5 languages, and it seems that learning swedish is just harder than it might have been years ago. Our sons of course speak fluently! Fortunately so many people speak english or german and so we have been able to comunicate quiet well with people.