Monday, October 26, 2009

Monday My Boy Fix

I missed my horse! As I mentioned in a previous post, I've been busy, busy, busy! And that means little horsey time for me. I was so happy to see my horse today. We had to get him hay from the farm store, then I went out to groom him while he was eating. The downpour from earlier had subsided, and a sharp autumn breeze kicked up. The horses had been a little wired during feeding time (a lot of galloping and bucking) so I tossed a few cookies in My Boy's bucket and entered the pasture. He followed me up to the tree where his hay had been thrown. He was eagerly assessing me, did I have any more cookies?

I picked up a grooming brush and he shied away. Stinker! You'd think he was the wild Mustang on the property. He finally let me groom the dried dirt off of him.

Then, I sprayed some more wound spray on his boo-boo and it stung. The stinker left me again! (By the way, the scrapes scab have mostly fallen off and it looks fine, I just like to keep the new skin moist.)

I realize that My Boy's copper color almost perfectly matches that of dead cedar twigs.

They are falling off their branches left and right in the wind and end up My Boy's tough, blanketing the ground....even suspended in bare branches around the property. I became obsessed with photographing them.

My Boy got a drink of water at his trough, and then he moseyed back up to keep eating. It was nice to hang out with him as the sun lowered behind the damp green trees. I love this time of year, the crisp air and nature sprinkled with shades of amber. If I'm dressed warmly enough, I could spend all day outside hanging with my horse.

Brandy wandered down to the water trough from the back of her pasture and I snapped a picture of her, all fuzzy and dirty. Paint Girl said she'd never have a white horse again. I can surely understand why, but there is also something very organic and earthy about a dirty white horse.

Finally, it was time to head inside and warm up my hands.

Goodnight, sweet spotted boy. See you later than sooner.....

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fenced In

I was sitting in the car a few weeks ago during a fall harvest tour, and I happened to look over at a pasture next to me. There were no animals in it, but I focused on the fence. Some thoughts went through my head and I grabbed my camera and started taking a few pictures.

This particular fencing was hog wire lined with barbed wire, and possibly, a strand of electric wire. I was imagining a horse getting his leg caught in big squares of the hog wire and then as it struggled, being torn apart by the barbed wire. Yes, I have a bit of an overactive imagination.

My Boy's fencing at the Painted Creek is hog wire (the narrower rectangles, not the large squares) with electric wire on the top. He is very respectful of fencing, and even thinks there is hot wire on the parts there isn't. We've had almost no problems with this wire in terms of safety except one- My Boy injured himself recently when he bucked near the fence. He came down on the hog wire part of it with his leg, scraping up his inner hock. Had the wire been barbed, I can only imagine the damage that could have occurred.

The only downfall to this fencing is that without a rail or electric wire on top, it is very easy for a horse to lean it's head and neck over it and bend the wire. I won't mention any names, but a black and white paint mare whose name begins with an "F" has been known to bend a few fences in her life in search for the "grass that is always greener."
So no, our fencing isn't perfect for horses, but I would take it over barbed wire any day.

Do you believe in a perfect type(or near perfect) fencing for horses? I've often heard people say that a horse can injure itself in or on any fencing. It seems to me this is true, but I also think you are lowering your odds of injury with some kinds of fencing over others.

What kind of fencing do you have, and if it's not your dream fencing, in a perfect world, what would be your ideal fencing be?

And can someone please clarify for me, is it "barb wire" or "barbed wire"? I have seen it written both ways.....

Sunday, October 18, 2009

What a Drip!

Goodness, this weekend was a wet one! Autumn is alive, painting the landscape a fiery burst of colors.

When I first started photographing these trees, their golden leaves were just dripping in a light drizzle.

Then a downpour began. Thankfully, I was on a covered porch!

Even these crows seemed in drenched discontent on their high-wire perch.

Due to this weather, I didn't do much with my horse on Saturday. First, I emptied his grain bucket of water, nearly full after just 24 hours of rain.

Then I gave him an apple and contemplated his new beach-front property. I have no idea where all of this sand ran off from.

The mares no longer live at the Painted Creek. Apparently, it's now "The Painted Lake."

I bid goodbye to the mud-caked equines and drove to Paint Girl's workplace, an indoor stable, where I got to see her work a few horses. I can tell she is really enjoying her new job! Here is a handsome bay 3-year old stallion she just finished longing.

Sunday was slightly better in the weather department. I was able to bring out my horse, groom and clip his mohawk bridle path, and trot him out in the sloshy arena. He checked out the orange cedar needles floating on the arena puddles (and munched on the weeds growing out of the puddles, of course!)

I took a picture of my pretty pony against a scenic yellow tree.

I am so bored with all of this posing already!

My visits to my pony are going to be scattered few and far between over the next few weeks, as I am doing some traveling with family and work. I gave him his fuzzy warm neck a BIG hug and told him to stay out of trouble until I get back!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Typewriter Tidbit on Life

Last week I mentioned that at a yard sale I got an old typewriter lesson manual, maybe from the 60's (I could not find a date.) The picture above, which I took from the front page, says it all.

In honor of my sister Paint Girl's new job, her dream job- working with animals, I have chosen this typing lesson to share from the book.

Lesson 47
Measured Typing

1. Too many people seem to be content to spend their time in just carrying out the purpose of others. They work for nothing but the pay; they think more about the pay than the purpose. Give them the pay, and somebody else can have the purpose, for all they care. In this way millions of people live unhappy lives just because they do not have a purpose.

2. You can and should have a purpose of your own. At the same time you can serve the purpose of another and serve it even better. You can still have the pay and yet be working out your own purpose. Remember that all good purposes tend in the same direction and go hand in hand. Decide now that you will have a purpose; then your life will be the richer.

I think this is so true- we've all probably been there at some point in our lives. Often a necessity, a job is a job, but it is not a passion. It does not serve a purpose, other than to make ends meet. I am excited that my sister is finally working a job that is more than just a paycheck to her. I truly believe she is also now using her God-given talent of working with animals.

Is your job your passion in life? Do you think you are fulfilling your purpose? If not, do you think that someday,you might find yourself there?

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Baby is Here!

Due to previous obligations on Sunday, I couldn't be at the Painted Creek for the arrival of my sister's Mustang filly, Chance. Luckily, I was able to get myself to the farm later that afternoon to see My Boy and how the new little munchkin was doing!

Chance was running a loop around her pasture when I first got there. Paint Girl and I walked out and climbed over the gate of her pasture. She immediately calmed down and walked around us, pausing at times. She seemed unsure if she wanted much human contact or attention. However, it was obvious that our presence comforted her.

Hey Pony Girl, what are you doing over there?

My Boy's leg scratch is mostly healed, but there is a huge scab over the worst of it. I felt like picking it off but I washed it out and put antiseptic on it, but left it be to de-scab itself. I took him back and longed him in the arena. He was being lazy and I only had the 14 ft. line so he just trotted about ten minutes each way. He's out of shape! Afterward, I let him graze along the filly's pasture.

Chance grazed alongside him in her pasture. She reminded me of the bird in the book "Are You My Mother?" by P.D. Eastman, wandering around asking other animals and things if they were his mother. My Boy kept eyeing the pretty filly suspiciously at times, but didn't really seemed overly concerned or interested in her. He's definitely confused as to why she isn't a goat! He thought it was pretty cool she's wearing green halter that matches his, though.

Later, I put My Boy away and picked rocks out of his pasture. I ended up taking a little video of him and Chance. Please don't laugh at my Pony Girl voice. I can't help talking to my horse that way, it's hilarious and sappy, I know!

It has been cute to see my sister worrying about Chance. I think she'd make a good mother someday! Hint, hint! Baby horses are a bit spontaneous and unpredictable, and I think Paint Girl's biggest fear is that she's going to get herself into some kind of trouble.

Look how little Chance is in the background! I think she is whinnying.

I think My Boy is looking handsome here. I love that his coat gets a richer copper color as his winter fuzzies grow in.

Congrats Paint Girl, on bringing your new baby home! It will be fun to watch her grow up, and I know My Boy will look after his little sister!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Property Hunters

For some reason, over the past twenty years, I have been with my parents while they searched, and found, most of the homes or properties they lived on. Maybe I should get a license to become a real estate agent.

Regardless, looking at homes and property is great fun, even if you are just window shopping! There is something about it....the thrill of the hunt. Each place is so unique. And the feeling of finding the potential "one" is so great.

I remember the cottage that looked adorable when peering into the windows from the outside. However, it had had a fire and a woman died in it. The agent had to disclose that information. Um, no, that was too weird and sad. Then there was the funky home where people had kept adding rooms and additions to the place. You got lost just walking through it, like the fun house at a carnival.

On one particular property hunting trip, my aunt, uncle, parents and I crammed into my parents' SUV and set out. It was quite the adventure. While trying to find the last (and best) property, we ended up on a dead end road and could not figure out the directions we had. We called my cousin back home to look up the original directions on the realtors site but even that was fruitless. The road we needed did not exist. And we had no GPS. That day, I learned you can call 411 on your cell phone, give them an address, and they will give you step by step directions to get you to your destination!

There was also the (apparently) abandoned farm with the strange smell. We literally just stepped out of the car and got a whiff. I swear it was strong natural gas odor, but my family thought it was a dead animal in the barn. It was disturbing and we left there in a jiffy!

Last weekend, my parents took me to a piece of land they'd found with some other family members.

So, put on some decent footwear and take a walk with us!

Mom and dad start us off on the tour. The property is a nice combination of thinned out woods, heavily wooded areas, and open pastures.

There are groomed paths in the park-like setting of woods, that has been kept bush-whacked.

You still had to be careful not to trip on the roots and vines that weren't cut all the way- these "nature's hands" tried to reach out and grab your foot.

The property borders right up against clear cut land......perhaps miles and miles of future horseback riding trails?

We walk through the woods and ferns and brush, and find many, many piles of scat from many wild animals. We think this one is elk (it looked more like mushed together pellets in real life, but too big to be deer.)

The light coming through the trees is mesmerizing.

I feel myself getting happier, just being here. It is so peaceful. It reminds me of where I grew up as a child.

We start downhill and come upon a small cleared meadow in the middle of the trees.

On one side of the meadow I find beautiful moss-covered branches on trees. My mom and I collect fallen branches to take home. I'll show you where they ended up in a future post.

We start up the hill on the other side of the meadow. It's a climb! I'm coming through the trees! It's a little hard to climb in rubber rain boots while snapping pictures with the Nikon! I thought the ground was going to be wet, but it wasn't!

I'm almost out of the ferns. Even with two bad knees, my father is faster than me!

Voila! The top of the hill! Mom and dad are catching their breath.

Here, we find the sun's warmth in the open and start peeling off the down jackets!

Beautiful! Acres of open field. Looks like it was possibly hayed late summer.

We continue on through the field and head towards the road, and find an apple tree.

Alas, Rosie was waiting back in the car...and she needed a potty break, so the walk was over.

Hopefully you enjoyed the little tour. Isn't property hunting fun? Do you ever window shop for a new place to live?

Fabulous Fall Weekend

No hairy spiders in this post...I promise!

I had a busy weekend with some of my family. We attended some fall festivals and flea markets.

The morning weather was chilly, yet by the afternoon the sun popped out. As you can tell, we were being blinded here!

Leave it to Dusty Devoe to find a horse to pet! The first flea market was in a horse arena/barn. They had apple cider, pumpkins, lots of handmade and vintage goods....and ponies. How perfect!

I got these unique sheep tea light holders there. My mom and I each got one. The tea lights burning in them are the little flameless ones.

I love fall decor! It even rivals Christmas decor in my book!

My mom bought a carved out pumpkin full of rosehips. We also got scoops of a rosehip potpourri....delightfully autumn!

We hit a church rummage sale in final last hour....the "fill up a grocery bag with as much as you can for $2" hour! I found this book, Rascal, which I remember reading as a preteen. And an old bottle.

I also picked up an old picture frame, a weathered pink short-sleeved sweatshirt, a paper journal, and an old college typewriting textbook. Definitely obsolete. Interestingly, I loved some of the sample paragraphs for the typing lessons and I will share some of them with you on "typewriter Tuesdays" starting next week!

I also got to photograph an old classic truck for a friend of my parents. This was a fun shot I took of me in the side mirror.

I was wearing my pink horsey rain boots in anticipation of a sloshy day, but look at that blue sky behind me!

That was only part of my fun weekend. I'll share more in my next post....
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