Leaping Lamb Farm with Kids: An Oregon Farm Stay Your Family Will Love

Why should you book a vacation at Leaping Lamb Farm with kids? I could tell you it’s the sheep and their wooly babes. Or I could say it’s silly Gillie the dog who comes calling at your cottage door when he hears the clang of dishes being washed. I might say it’s the fainting goats, the donkey named Paco, the trio of horses, or the fairy-filled forest trails. All of that is true. But also families come again and again to Leaping Lamb Farm because of its welcoming and kindhearted owner, Scottie Jones. Read this review to learn what to expect during a family vacation at Leaping Lamb Farm in Oregon.

Leaping Lamb Farm guest cottage with rams in the distance
Guest cottage with rams in the distance (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

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Greener pastures at Leaping Lamb Farm

Scottie has lived on these 70 acres with her husband, Greg, since 2003. The couple decided to write a new chapter of their life story when entering their 50s. So they left their business careers in the Phoenix Area to pursue greener, wetter pastures in Alsea, Oregon. Their friends laid bets that the couple wouldn’t last more than three years on the farm. That only encouraged them even more to make their farm a success.

View from the flower garden at Leaping Lamb Farm
View from the flower garden (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

At Leaping Lamb Farm, Scottie and Greg cut and bail their own hay, sometimes with help from neighbors. They chase down runaway sheep when their livestock outsmart the fences to leap into the surrounding mountains. When the Joneses realized their farm was eating up their retirement savings, the couple built a two-bedroom cottage on property and began renting it out to suburbanites and city-dwellers for nature-filled vacations.

Feeding chickens and ducks at Leaping Lamb Farm in Alsea, Oregon
Feeding chickens and ducks at Leaping Lamb Farm in Alsea, Oregon (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Connect with nature

Natural beauty shines in this bucolic spot of Oregon, about an hour and a half from Portland. You’ll wake to the sound of a rooster (or two) crowing on your first morning. But you’ll soon adapt to the mellow sounds of farm life, cock-a-doodle-doos included. Two hand-fed rams baa for their daily servings of dried corn. The hens cluck. The duck quacks as it waddles into a plastic wading pool. It’s all framed by green grapes growing on vines that twist around the deck of the cottage and giant evergreen trees in the distance.

Farm dog in Alsea, Oregon
Silly Gillie the dog searching for chipmunks (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Love is in the details

It’s the little touches that keep families coming back to Leaping Lamb Farm. Thought has been put into the details to make simple things even more memorable during a farm stay here.

The Joneses outfitted the hay barn with a basketball hoop and basketball. With parental supervision, kids are welcome to climb the hay stacks to shoot and play. Light streams in through the barn’s slats, painting sunbeams across their smiling faces.

Scottie gives hand-drawn maps to fairy houses that a talented farmhand built on their property. Ahem…I mean the houses were built by fairies who find Leaping Lamb Farm as magical and welcoming as human guests do. Leave a note in the wee mailbox at one such tiny home and expect a letter mailed to your house after your vacation.

Fairy house
One of five fairy houses at Leaping Lamb Farm (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

The flavors of Leaping Lamb Farm

Continental breakfast is provided for guests. You’ll find a fridge and pantry stocked with juice, milk, breads, fruits, coffee/tea, cereal, waffle/pancake mix, or other items depending on the season. Cooking basics are also provided including sugar, salt, pepper, seasonings, honey, flour, and oils.

Guests are invited to wander through the vegetable garden, flower patch, and green house. You can supplement your meals by purchasing fresh tomatoes, cucumber, herbs and more. Freshly laid eggs are also available for purchase. Plan to bring your own groceries for lunches, dinners and snacks or you can purchase some goodies from the nearby John Boy’s Alsea Mercantile and local fresh produce stands.

Green grapes on the vine at Leaping Lamb Farm
Green grapes on the vine at Leaping Lamb Farm (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Leaping Lamb Farm pushed my kids, especially my youngest, out of their comfort zones. My son has a fear of vegetables and especially fruits. Never before had he ever tasted a berry. At Leaping Lamb Farm, though, he didn’t hesitate to pluck a mulberry from the tree and pop it into his mouth.

Freshly collected eggs for breakfast on an Oregon farm stay
Freshly collected eggs for breakfast (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Leaping Lamb Farm lessons

Scottie doesn’t merely give guests a tour of the property. She connects. She asks questions about your family, and cares about the answers. Scottie explains the why and how of farm work to children and their parents: how to find the barn swallow nests, how composting works, why it’s important to pick a horse’s hoof before riding it.

Mama sheep and their baby lambs at Leaping Lamb Farm
Mama sheep and their baby lambs (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Finding balance at Leaping Lamb Farm

The Joneses have fashioned a slackline on which children can play while parents watch from the cottage deck, glass of lemonade or wine in hand. The rope is a couple of feet above ground, strung between two trees. When my 8-year-old son started bouncing on it, Scottie said in her soft way, “I might ask you not to jump there. The rope is meant for balancing. It’s not a trampoline. Can you show me how far you can balance on it walking from one end to the other?”

Finding balance at Leaping Lamb Farm
Finding balance at Leaping Lamb Farm (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Childhood, how it should be

Usually my kids avoid and whine about chores of any sort. Not so on the farm. I gave them free-reign to explore here…the only rule being not to go into the forest or hay barn without an adult. This newfound freedom turned my lazybones children into productive farmers that gleefully collected eggs, fed the horses, and even mucked out stalls.

There’s a trust during a stay at Leaping Lamb Farm with kids. Scottie trusts that children will follow the farm rules and act responsibly. She allows kids to take the mama goat for a walk on a rope lead with her two babies following behind. That trust includes that children will, “steer the goats away from my flowers and berries, but encourage them to eat the weeds instead.”

A hen and a baby feinting goat on a farm stay vacation
A hen and Pearl, a baby feinting goat (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

When I was a child, I played for hours outdoors without adult supervision. Today, my kids don’t have that same freedom to explore, scrape their knees, and come home when the street lamps light up. It was such a joy to call out my children’s names at dinnertime from the cottage door and watch them scramble in from the world of play. How wonderful it was to let them live a few days of innocence, free from my helicopter parenting and unburdened by their own obsession with technology.

Leaping Lamb farm owner, Scottie, with children guests
My kids posing with Leaping Lamb Farm co-owner, Scottie, on our last day on the farm (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

A farmer is born

We all felt a little melancholy on the day of our departure from Leaping Lamb Farm. My 11-year-old daughter, Karissa, made her rounds to ensure she snapped a photo of all of the animals, and get an extra snuggle with Paco the donkey. Then Karissa declared she wants to be a farmer when she grows up. I’m not sure if she’ll follow through on that dream. But I do know who she can call for patient and gentle advice if she ever does.

Leaping Lamb Farm Cottage
Leaping Lamb Farm Cottage (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)


Leaping Lamb Farm offers two accommodation options. We stayed in their two-bedroom farm cottage. It includes a small kitchen with dining area, family room, one bathroom and a porch. This was perfect set-up for our family of four. Fans and windows keep the cottage cool in summer, while wall heaters and a propane stove provide warmth in winter.

For larger groups, Leaping Lamb Farm has renovated an 1895 farm on property. It boasts 4,000 square feet of space with five bedrooms, three baths, a large eat-in kitchen, dining room, and living room. Expect central air conditioning and heating in this home.

Tempted to book a stay? Read reviews and learn more about Leaping Lamb Farm on Trip Advisor.

Paco the Donkey on Leaping Lamb Farm
Paco the donkey was my daughter’s favorite animal resident (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Paco the donkey

Even if you can’t visit, you can share a little slice of this sweet farm with your children with Scottie’s book, Paco the Dusty Donkey.

Explore More

Read more about why your family will love a farm stay at one of the many farms in the U.S. that offer this unique type of vacation!

If you like farm-fresh food, then you’ll love tasting the farm-to-table cuisine in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Leaping Lamb Farm Review

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Would you like to stay at Leaping Lamb Farm with kids? Let us know in the comments below!

A Note from The Travel Mama: I paid a media rate to stay at Leaping Lamb Farm with my family. All opinions are mine, as always. 

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  1. I would love to visit somewhere like this. I have always loved farm life and so this would be a great experience.

    1. I enjoyed it much more than I expected, Mellissa. I hope you get a chance to experience a farm stay someday!

  2. Aww, I love farms and teaching my kids about wildlife. I grew up on a farm as a kid and would love for my kids to have that experience.

    1. It would be a wonderful thing to share with your kids, especially since you could share this slice of your childhood with them!

  3. What a great place. I am going to pin this and hopefully we can find the time to check it out. Our girls would love it!

    1. I’m so bummed that my kids forgot to leave a note for the fairies in the mailbox! If you go, I hope your girls will remember!