Journaling

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Used to run a stable and live on a farm, now I am back into banking for awhile. Still have horses and love animals.  

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Still Smelling Good, Nothing Else Much Going On Except a Lecture

Yes, he still smells good and he has two different scents on, one on each sleeve! Anyway, plenty of work in the barn and I started cleaning the house up tonight because this is going to be a busy exhausting weekend. It will start with barn chores tomorrow and working on phones and more barn chores. I may go to a friends house for New Year's Eve or stay home haven't decided yet.

Saturday starts a round of pet sits that last till Monday. In addition, I have an old friend stopping by sometime and Kylie's friends are doing a Sunday Night sleepover here. Not to mention the two dogs I am keeping here for a relative. I have a very full life!

Monday my class starts again and also my regular work schedule in the evening will be full. I will have to try and get as much sleep as possible to keep up with everything but this weekend is going to be real hectic and sleep doesn't sound like something that I will get a lot of but we'll see.

I got a lecture from my 13 year old daughter this evening that I was acting like her friends at her old school talking about guys and relationships and that I should think about something else. Surely the humor in this is obvious. I haven't considered dating in oh lets say about 10 years. I have always put her first in everything and protected her in every way possible. I've worked hard and now I feel I could try going out with someone or at least flirt for heavens sake. It has apparently made her uncomfortable and I was set down and warned of the danger of thinking too much about the opposite sex. Hurray for me!!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Man and His Feminine Side, Farm Sitting, and Sunshine

Today started out very well as my new/used coffee maker made the coffee as scheduled and it tasted great. I had ran vinegar and salt through it last night to clean it and wasn't sure if all the residue was out. The sun was shining and I went to a farm not far from here to meet the owner and her horses for a possible job farm sitting for her in the future. It was a very nice place and the owner was especially nice so I look forward to having her as a client.

We returned to the farm to free horses and to clean stalls. I finished most of them and Kylie and I and a friend headed towards Fairlawn to snipe some discounts after the holidays. Kylie and I were planing on going to a couple of stores that would be what could best be described as stores women would appreciate more than men. Since our friend happened to be a man I have to say he was very graceful about the experience except he decided to spray himself with very expensive woman's cologne. Not knowing of course that the expensive stuff really stays on. The rest of the afternoon I must say smelled really good and someone was a little self conscious about other men thinking maybe he might be interested in them. (I enjoyed that part)

We finally came back to the farm and finished chores and I had a conference call and now have some cleaning to catch up on. I'll be calling to check on my friend tomorrow to see how the fumigating of clothes went this evening!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Man Trap, Weather Change, and Work Groove

This morning I let the horses out and cleaned the stalls and took care of the little chihuahuas in my care for the next two weeks. I tried getting the furnace to lite in the block building and fought a battle with the hose which was partially frozen.

My friend and I finished putting together the wire kennel in the block building and with him standing in it I thought it would make a better man trap. After all, had I closed the door... I would have trapped one right then and there. The moment passed and he was free to roam again in his wild habitat.

I spent the evening in a great deal of pain. The weather is changing and years ago I would ache from any change. I was surprised that today my hands, wrists, and arms are throbbing like a tooth ache just like they used to when I was much younger. I took four ibuprofen but unfortunately it hasn't touched the pain which is unusual.

I worked till just before ten and then was allowed to leave early not because I wasn't feeling well but because the calls for everyone must not have been very productive. It was a relief because I was feeling the pain and wasn't as up beat as I usually am.

Kylie and I wrapped the chores up at 10 and I cleaned a new/used coffee pot my old neighbor Andrew gave me. It is programmable and I am excited to see if it works tomorrow at 7:30 a.m.

I got another call to farm sit for another stables and I'm excited about it. I also have another potential farm client that would be on a regular basis. I enjoy doing farm sitting and it is a good way to earn income. Someday, I hope to have a good client base built up but I like having regular hours and having a paycheck for backup too. This new calling job is excellent because it is flexible and I am very happy about that. Plus, I am helping excellent causes like cancer and Alzheimer research. My mother died of lymphoma and my step father who was an angel died from Alzheimer's.  Both are terrible things and it will be good for them both to be completely eliminated someday. I hope I can help make a difference in anyway possible.

With all that said I am very tired and still hurting and I look forward to my dogs and their therapy in the form of warmth on my weather forecasting bones and joints. After all, tomorrow is another day to set the man trap and maybe I'll catch one and study it for awhile before I release it back into the wild. It will be the Mantrap Research Foundation (sounds like I need some grant money).

It's A Bird, It's A Plane, ERRR It's Yellow Snow I mean Big Yellow

In All It's YELLOW Glory

Monday, December 27, 2010

Mischief, Snow and Getting Lost Close to Home

Mmmm.... I just woke up today wanting to stir up things! So, I called and sent texts to the ex-husband to get him all twisted up. My dad who came for a visit the night before decided he wanted to leave his two little Chihuahuas with me for two weeks and dropped them off this morning. Of course he got stuck in the driveway so I had to pull him out with the help of my neighbor Andrew and big yellow (my big bright yellow Dodge Ram).

The furnace in the block building decided to go off and on and off again and the Chihuahuas have very little fur and so I had to put them in the basement or they would be Chihua-cycles by morning. It took me forever to get just two stalls done with phone calls, my neighbor on the other side who helped me start putting together a dog run in the block building and a zillion other things.

I quit long enough to make a run for sawdust and ended up missing a turn because Griff went with me and we were yakking and ended up in Barberton and then got lost. We found our way back, hit the feed store and I made it home just in time to finish chores and run in and get on the phone for work.

Nanna
The evening went okay as I am still adjusting to having the job from home on the phones. The dogs and the bird Nanabelle Sugie were all good and didn't make a lot of noise. Kylie's dad Dave came by (the ex) and helped her with a project and they had some fun.  

Tomorrow will be Chihuahua sitting, stalls in the a.m. and maybe a little shopping. I think a nap would be in order to as today will eventually catch up with me. Although I could don some horns a tail and a pitch fork and have a little more fun getting into some more mischief, we'll see and also I am sure the caffeine in my system will spur me on.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Different Kind of Christmas

This year has completely changed our lives. Change in employment, residence, and relationships. All for the better and all with incredible blessings.

Our tree was beautiful but for the first time since I had my little girl Kylie there weren't a lot of little and big presents for her under the tree. Since my mom died there have been more than a few year where I never received a Christmas present. Since I am an adult I was always just very happy to give Kylie a great Christmas Morning.

The point here is that she did get some very large and important gifts but they couldn't be wrapped and they couldn't fit under the tree this year. Presents like a beautiful horse named Aubrey, a barn to play in and go to when she feels like getting away. A beautiful pasture to walk in. A better relationship with her father and maybe some healing for them both. They spent the day on Christmas eve shopping for art supplies that Kylie wanted. She also sees me more than when I worked those long hours away from home. She also has two very good friends that love her and she can talk to and visit even though she is home schooled this year which is also a wonderful blessing. All these things were from God of course and He was kind enough to let me along for the ride!

For the first time in many years I got the only two things for Christmas that are material things that I had actually wanted. I got a comforter for my bed thanks to my brother and a very nice neighbor bought Kylie and I a pink daisy BB gun. I never had one as a kid and thought being on a farm we should have one. It is funny how God works, you would think I was the child this year!

I avoided the TV commercials and shopping because of the ugliness of commercialism. The losing sight of what the season is about even if you don't believe in a God the message is supposed to be love and you really can't buy and wrap love. Caring and helping those around you are really the most rewarding things. Even if you don't believe Jesus is the Son of God, if you read about Him the message is He came for the broken hearted, the unlovable, the poor and the every day person. His message was and is that we are loved and to share the gift of His love by pouring it out to all that will receive it. We don't have to do things for other people out of obligation or guilt. I don't think we have to say anything about God either but by pouring out love and being genuine if there is light and goodness in your heart, the message is there and is clearer than all the words in the world.

There is such a great need in the world and this last couple of years have been very hard on many people but an even greater need is the desire to be loved, to know a person is important to someone, to experience  kindness instead of harshness or indifference. We celebrate the Lord's birthday on Christmas but for those who don't know Him, we can celebrate with them His joy, His love and His sacrifice...  in sacrificing some of our time and our joy and our love to share it with someone else.  

Friday, December 24, 2010

A Merry Kindred Acre Farm Christmas

Our first Christmas in this new place, a warm house that's cozy, a wonderful barn, two ancient oak trees, land, my lovely animals and many good friends.

All the stalls are clean and the everyone got Christmas Eve hay and fresh water in their buckets. My wonderful brother bought each dog a toy for under the tree at the dollar store. Kylie and her dad had a great afternoon shopping together and I worked till noon. I am happy to do a job that keeps me at home but will pay bills. It is also interesting to find that there are many generous people willing to give of their time and genuinely care about the cause they volunteer to help. I am doing my part to help too and I talk to many senior who are just glad to speak to someone.

Christmas 2010 and the Lord has blessed me very much and I am thankful for His greatest blessings, His Son, His Love, and His Salvation.  Sheppard's, a manger, lovely animals all surrounding the King of Kings how perfect.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wrapping up a pretty decent day

I finished my away from home training today and I did pretty well and recruited some volunteers for some very worthy organizations who help many people. I have to be persistent and determined to accomplish what must be done and at the same time confident and positive. I can be very naturally cheery and that annoys some people but I think in a job like this it is a plus. I am happy to have a part time job that is flexible, I can work at home, and have some steady income while the business builds.

I have a farm sitting job that will be ongoing in January, some kenneling and grooming but December has been very slow. The first three years are hard when starting a business and this is the first year for me. I need to market myself more. I have a contact at a well known pet boutique in Bath and  I need to call on her and introduce myself and ask for referrals.

Tonight I came home and found Kylie and her Dad cleaning stalls and they had finished by the time I arrived and were just cleaning up. They had hayed and watered and all was left for me to do is give out the feed. It was nice to be able to come into the house for awhile and rest before jumping into action.

Tomorrow I will be working from home during the day and on Friday but next week I will start my evening hours. I am excited to do my morning routine, work my regular business and be with the animals and then spend a few hours on the phone in the evening working. I can keep moving and doing things and getting exercise and only be immobilized for a few hours and I will have a break or can walk away for a few minutes. If I have to pet sit I can still do that and come back and finish the job.

I have four sleeping doggie angels sleeping around me right now and the Christmas tree lights twinkling and all is well tonight at Kindred Acres, tomorrow... that is another story!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Marathon Day

I enjoyed today's training session and it actually seems like a fun job. It is very fast paced and I like it because time flies.

I'm tired though. I started with chores this morning and changing into business casual and working till 6 and coming home to pick stalls and finish feeding. Kylie gave Satire his food at 6 and hayed everyone and I did the rest when I got home.

Next was some laundry and updating my home computer and installing software. I got stuck with a phone issue which I'll have to resolve tomorrow if I can.

I got a grand welcome from Nannabelle Sugie and the dogs this evening. I  missed them all and my lovely horses too. It will be much easier for me once I get in the swing of things working at home in the evening on the phone. My days are for the barn and evenings for picking up a regular cash flow.

I will sleep well tonight because I'm very sleepy now. Starting Thursday I'll be able to work from home and that will be better. Kylie is reading her book to finish up her literature for school and I hope she is able to finish it soon because all of her classes will be up to date. Homeschooling for the first time this year is an adjustment but I like it and Kylie is doing well.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Grace Abounds at Kindred Acres

Each day something good and kind happens for us here. Tonight I had a special problem and the solution was delivered by a friend who found it laid upon her heart by the Lord. She didn't know the issue but she had the answer.

I'm blessed everyday and tonight almost brought me to tears because of God's mercy and love. Really I'm overwhelmed by it all.

I pray that someday the Lord will let His blessings flow through my heart and hands to be able to freely give to others and enrich their lives and the lives of many of His creatures.

As a child I had many rejections, disappointments, abandonment and abuse but when I look at my life now and how beautiful it is again it moves me to tears.

Angel went out with Billy again today and Shirley and I had fun watching her start to unfold and become a horse that is part of a herd and the collective again as she was intended to be. This will be a joyous year for her when she is able to run in the pasture with other horses.

In January, I may have a job farm sitting for someone who has sheep. I've wondered what is like to care for sheep. I have secret ambitions of course with herding dogs, sheep, and being a shepherdess.

Christmas is near and to celebrate I am thankful for all I have received and for the love given freely to me from my Savior. Thank you Lord for being the Sheppard of my life, the Nurturer and Protector. Thank You for giving me wisdom and the love in my heart for Your creations, guide me to be a better servant and caretaker of all You have entrusted to me.

This is so my life!

The Nativity

Our tree

Today, thanks to my brother

My brother came specifically down to help me get the tree up and decorated. I haven't been motivated this year and my brother Greg has helped on many Christmases with the tree, presents, and wrapping. I'm glad we did it because this is the first Christmas in a new home and I do love this place. I brought out the Nativity that I have had since I was a child and put it on the mantle and lit a nice fire.

I planned a nice evening since Kylie went on a sleepover. It didn't turn out as planned but I really enjoyed it. I had the tree and the fire and spent the evening alone. I made an excellent late dinner for myself that included scallops & linguine with homemade cheese sauce.

I watched some good old movies and enjoyed my cuddly dogs. I also put a bunch of stuff in the crock pot which means something healthy and hot for most of the week without having to cook much else. Tomorrow some feed store business and playing with horses in the barn. I hope to brush Cody and play with him a little. I get busy with everyone else in the barn and let him go sometimes. I want to ride him again soon.

Today, thanks to my brother

My brother came specifically down to help me get the tree up and decorated. I haven't been motivated this year and my brother Greg has helped on many Christmases with the tree, presents, and wrapping. I'm glad we did it because this is the first Christmas in a new home and I do love this place. I brought out the Nativity that I have had since I was a child and put it on the mantle and lit a nice fire.

I planned a nice evening since Kylie went on a sleepover. It didn't turn out as planned but I really enjoyed it. I had the tree and the fire and spent the evening alone. I made an excellent late dinner for myself that included scallops & linguine with homemade cheese sauce.

I watched some good old movies and enjoyed my cuddly dogs. I also put a bunch of stuff in the crock pot which means something healthy and hot for most of the week without having to cook much else. Tomorrow some feed store business and playing with horses in the barn. I hope to brush Cody and play with him a little. I get busy with everyone else in the barn and let him go sometimes. I want to ride him again soon.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Saturday, everyone comes at the same time

My brother comes, then Dusty and Nick to deliver wood, Michelle, Gloria, and then Dave. All within 30 minutes of each other!

We have some nice firewood to help keep us warm for a few weeks and some more groceries. Gloria brought sawdust and the starter on the tractor was sent out to be rebuilt. Everyone comes and helps in one way or another.

Angel our mare who was in a field by herself for at least 15 years got to visit with pony and Billy. Pony was not interested in Angel and let us all know he wasn't making friends. Billy a nice gelding did well with her and Angel being a bit bossy actually did very well. We all hope to have Angel out to pasture with a buddy in the spring. She is already doing better as she isn't good with manners or space. She's very sweet and I am glad she has come to us. Dave who is an experienced horse trainer (Kylie's Dad) helped us by introducing Angel safely to the big door to the arena and the small paddock. He is taller then me or Shirley which helps because Angel really doesn't respect space at all.

Billy is becoming friendly to people instead of aloof as he was when he first came. He is a quarter horse gelding with a very large butt! Billy can be a little pushy but he is doing very well now. I will have to take pictures of Angel and Billy so everyone can see them to put a muzzle with a name.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Micah as a puppy with Kylie, how they've grown


Runaway apples, Elvis and Nannabelle, 2nd Interview

I let the pony and mini out today to walk around the barn while I did chores. They like visiting the other horses but Bit (the mini) zoned in on a bag of apples hidden in a bucket. Before I knew what was happening, Bit was running down the middle of the barn with the bag of apples in his teeth. He put his hoof on it, ripped the bag, and chomped an apple in a split second while the other apples went flying.

My Nannabelle Sugie (Cockatoo) is an older bird but her exact age is unknown. Whenever we play old hymns or Christmas music she will sing along and knows some of the words. Today I played Christmas music and one of the songs sung by Elvis really jogged her memory. She sang and danced and displayed all of her crest and wings in joy. I can't help but think that she is remembering another Christmas somewhere in time.

I had a second interview for a job working with people and their dogs. I am now intrigued by the position. I will hear in a couple of days.

Dusti

Dusti is barn dog today

Dusti is our senior dog and he was Courage's best buddy until Courage passed with cancer. At the old place Courage and Dusti and I would feed the horses together morning and night. We did the chores together for years. This morning while petting Dusti I was reminded of the pleasure Dusti had when he would accompany me to the barn each day.

Today I decided that I would only take Dusti and we would have one on one time in the barn. He was like a puppy spinning around and barking with joy. He is a very well behaved boy and with four dogs it is easy for him to get lost in the chaos. He loves rides in the truck and scratches and cheese and barn chores.

He mourned the loss of Courage and was a little lost for awhile without him. It was difficult for all of us to loose such a good friend but Dusti saved Courage's life because Courage had chronic separation anxiety. We tried everything and nothing worked. The vet felt the best thing was to put Courage to sleep. I couldn't have that so I brought a puppy home for Courage. He didn't know what to do at first but then he took over teaching Dusti how to climb stairs and go into his crate and how to play. Courage was a new dog after Dusti came and never had separation anxiety anymore.

Dusti is quiet and well mannered now, gone are the days of stealing socks and underwear or chewing whatever he can find. Such a good boy.

Dusti as a puppy

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sunshine and running done

Was a pretty day and I enjoyed being outside even though it was cold. We did stalls in the AM and used all of the sawdust except one bag (You can relax Shirley, I bought ten more today). I decided to buy equine senior instead of Cheerios for Satire :)

We hit Aldi's, Copley Feed, Farmer's Exchange in Norton, and I had a job interview. I did a load of wash, cooked dinner and started a fire. I have super powers! (That is when I have at least one cup of coffee)

Now relaxing and feeling good about the day and getting things done. I had a hard time falling to sleep last night because all I could think about is what feed store I should go to today. Tomorrow is another interview in the afternoon.

Later tonight the hay fairy will visit the farm to give the horse babies something to warm them up. Some of the horses are wearing dresses to keep them warm, very cute actually. All they need is matching hats and purses :)

Dan Dan

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Headaches and Toothaches

I had a sinus headache last night and an uncomfortable tooth today. I went to the dentist and it is now better. It is only temporary but at least the tooth is now protected and hopefully I won't have to have a root canal.

My sister Jane came through for me on this one. We are from totally different worlds because we were raised in different environments. Neither of us had a great childhood nor did either of us have proper dental care as children so when I thought about calling her I knew she'd understand.

I still have some sinus issues which always makes me tired and sleepy but Kylie and I went out for the night feeding and made sure the horse babies had hay for a cold night. Tomorrow is going to be a little better and I have plenty to do. I have to hit the feed store, do an interview and maybe Aldi's.

We haven't put a Christmas tree up yet and somehow Kylie and I just can't seem to catch the Christmas spirit this year. I am going to make a concentrated effort to try and put up the tree by the weekend. Maybe some decorations and Christmas music will help us shake off the holiday blah's.

Cooper

Good for Cooper

My mornings start out with a big greeting from Nanabelle Sugie our umbrella Cockatoo. She is always peeking out from underneath the blanket I use to cover the top of her cage and she will say good morning and what are you doing. The bunny and all of the other birds carry on because it is breakfast time.

Since the barn is closed up tight the dogs have had a special treat which is to go do morning chores with me. As soon as I feed the little ones in their cages and head towards my coat and boots there is a happy flurry of fur and paws dancing. One dog in particular is over joyed at going with me. The little dog we brought home from the dog pound named Cooper, who couldn't even run because he was so overweight. Cooper couldn't jump on the couch either, he was forty pounds and he is a little Sheltie.

This morning Cooper did the Cooper dance and barked as I opened the door. He ran and circled the other dogs as they ran to the back door of the barn and he ran back to me and circled and barked. The snow is deep and Cooper either runs or bunny hops but he is so happy. He can run and change leads and he does the stops and starts of a true herding dog. Micah my collie mix who is the lead dog when I am not around and tries to let everyone know he is in charge tolerates Cooper very well. Cooper is spunky for his size and so I see the two herding dogs hang out together more and more. Cooper also nips at Micah's heals. Micah doesn't always behave well when we get company but he is all business when we do chores in the barn.

The two golden's love visiting the barn and sniffing around. Dusti is old dog and he gets really excited about rolling in the snow. Dusti did some victory laps in the snow and ran to me for a good petting. He sleeps a lot more now and chooses when he feels like doing more.

My big Dan Dan who is a giant fluffy teddy bear knew when chores were almost done and went back outside the man door and laid down in the snow and waited for me.

Of course Nanabelle Sugie greats me when I return with her crest in full sail on her little head and I get a little baby cry from her. Lowkie whistles to me when he sees me. He is a pionus parrot who is a one person bird and very jealous of anyone when it comes to me. Lowkie was locked in a cage for years and I went to see him and I couldn't leave without him. I took him and his cage and put him in the car and brought him home. It took a few days even for him to come out of his cage. He now loves head scratches and is very sweet and loves to cuddle sometimes.

I love my animals and I love to see them unfold and blossom. They all have their stories but I think Cooper came here so fearful and insecure and he is just lovely now and so happy. It brings me great joy.  

Monday, December 13, 2010

Another Blessing

I have a cracked tooth that needs fixed and I have been babying it but it is getting worse. I finally broke down and called my sister in California as I knew of all people she would understand because she has had to suffer teeth problems in the past. She offered to pay for the temporary fix for me. I am so happy because I have suffered with toothaches and it isn't fun. I will loose this tooth if it isn't fixed soon and so I am going to try and get in this week to get it done.

Winter winds and appreciating all my blessings

The wind is whipping around the house and blowing ashes out of the fireplace. We are ready though with snow masks and layering. The barn is pretty warm considering the buckets have not frozen. I checked with the family who rented my old house and barn and indeed the buckets have frozen there. I thought it was cold enough as the buckets were always frozen from January through the beginning of March every year. This years cold temperatures started early but no frozen buckets here. It would be more of a task since I have more horses to care for now.

The barn was comfortable to work in today and I drove the big truck through the snow in the back to make a path through the snow for the wheelbarrows. My neighbor called to see if we needed plowed but I told him it is best to wait till tomorrow as it will just need to be plowed again. My truck can get out and that is enough for today.

We went to the store and bought some toilet paper and sandwich meat and other essentials to carry us through the storm although I think we are able to go out for things when we need them. I threw more wood on the porch to keep the fire going this evening and I have been promised a truck load sometime this week to keep us warm.

I have to sit back and think of each person who has contributed to our making it this far. I think if I believed in past lives I would have been a Sheppard or a farmer, definitely something to do with nature. Since I only know for sure about this life I can say that I have done many things but this is my bent or what I was created to do as the Bible says. I was born to do this and it is very easy for me actually. Sometimes I fear things happening but the Lord says perfect love casteth out fear, I have great love for what I have been blessed with and so  maybe that helps.

So many people have helped in big and small ways. I believe God is faithful and as many people have helped I hope they are greatly blessed for it. The new year is around the corner and I hardly know where the year went. I do remember this time last year being so unhappy and feeling lost. I was actually sick from worry and anxiety. As soon as I stepped out in faith I felt healed and restored.

The cold wind blows and the snow falls but it is good and I am happy to work and enjoy this place.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The storm sneaks in

We were all set to go to a nice church function and the winter weather cut loose. I have tremendous guilt about not going to church. I have terrible anxiety about going but I feel I need to try more. Shirley's car got stuck and it started to snow so we decided to stay and help her get out and also to get a jump on stalls. Tomorrow the snow may be to deep to push wheelbarrows through and it may take some time to get the long driveway plowed.

We finished early and I came in the house and cooked a decent dinner and then went back out to feed at 6:00. I managed to do a load of wash so we don't get piled up again and then I worked on Kylie's computer for awhile trying to install updates.

I watched some TV and snuggled with the dogs the rest of the evening. Nothing really exciting today just low key. Tomorrow I am sure will be interesting and the horses will have to hang in the arena instead of their usual outside time.

I am getting into shape more and more and loosing weight with all the work in the barn which has kind of rejuvenated me. I decided to color my hair the color it was when I was younger as it has turned darker as the grey has come in. I also have been taking better care of my skin. I'm thinking it might be okay after being alone so long to start thinking about dating again. Of course, finding the right victim might prove difficult but at least I am open to trying I think.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Getting ready for a big storm and men at work

The usual morning chores and since the sun was out I let the horses out in different areas to enjoy the nice weather. Kylie and I were unsuspecting women minding our own business when we were suddenly knee deep in men working at various jobs here on the farm. Men are funny creatures, when you need them there are none, when you least expect them or just plain don't care you can't spit without hitting one.

Anyway back to work on the farm- The first men to suddenly descend upon us were Griff and his friend Greg to paint the block building floor because they had leftover epoxy from a previous job. They were carrying stuff out, blowing and sweeping dirt and slapping paint on when around the corner came Dave and Dusty who were there to prepare the barn for a bad storm.  

Dave and Dusty were intent on clearing out all of the built up ice in the gutter so the places where screws had come loose could be reattached. The gutter looked like it could have collapsed from the weight of the ice very easily and it would have been a real job then because the thing is huge. Next they removed all of the built up snow on the horse barn roof in case the next storm was ice and snow putting too much weight on the roof support system. Finally, the leaking toilet. Yes the toilet that has been leaking in three different places is now fixed.

Later that evening- after all of the men milling about the farm went home we had another man visitor. Josh who came late to work on the tractor but didn't have jumper cables and of course I don't either. Tomorrow the tractor may be worked on because it is best done in the daylight.

In between all of this man powered repair frenzy, we had a visit from Gloria and her husband who were looking in to see how Angel is doing and they brought her some apples to munch on.

Today was a good day. Kylie and I did our regular chores and accepted the help and assistance of others who were all doing good deeds. Of course, I have a nice long list of things to heap on other poor unsuspecting males but I will save it for another day. Not to mention the fact that prayers are answered and that really is the moral of this story!

Pretty much a so so day

I wasn't feeling real good today as I have the makings of a cold or something. I dropped the title of my Highlander at the bank so it could be processed for the new owner and picked up some milk at Aldi's. When I came home I rested and took a nap and then went to the barn and did some chores. I was glad to feed everyone and come back inside, I didn't even start a fire.

Kylie and I watched a Christmas movie together and I am hoping to put the tree up sometime this weekend. Last year was the first year I didn't put one up since Kylie was born and it was because I just couldn't bring myself to get into the mood. Since we are in a new home and have so much to be thankful for I want to have the tree up to celebrate.

We are supposed to get a really bad storm next week and I am going to have to most likely get more sawdust to be ready and maybe a couple of bags of feed. This is bad for December but I am an optimist, perhaps we will get the worst over with and the rest of winter will be a cake walk (fingers crossed behind my back).

I need to work on getting more firewood rounded up too as it helps to have the fire going. The wood in the pasture is buried now so I'll have to find a different source. I hope to feel better tomorrow as I don't want to be slowed down any. I have a Christmas tea to go to Sunday afternoon with my good friends and I also start a class on Monday. Later this month I have to finish training for the part time job I took.

The house has stayed clean since Thanksgiving and the laundry is caught up and I hope to keep it that way as it is better to come into a clean house in the evening when working outside in the cold. I hate clutter and disorder it causes me a great deal of anxiety and discomfort. I can only relax when things are neat and orderly. With four dogs, 5 birds, and a bunny in the house it can be challenging but of course the birds are in the sun room which is allowed to be a little unkempt. Birds are very messy creatures and love to throw chewed wood and seeds everywhere. I can broom the sun room and be done with it.

I vacuum every day but it is easy with a smaller house now. We manage to do okay except for dog hair because the dogs don't potty in the house. My teenager of course is the real mess maker and the one least likely to pick up after herself. I try to keep the chaos in her room and most of the time I am successful.

Well off to bed now after taking bunches of cold medicine and with the tissue box nearby. I hope to sleep well and be ready to go in the morning to do things that need to be done. I have drapes still to hang in Kylie's room and chores and window trim to reinstall and a gutter on the barn to deal with even if I don't have help.

Bring it on Mr. Winter....

Friday, December 10, 2010

Getting the sniffles and more snow

I fell asleep on the couch last night listening to the fire crackle. I am enjoying the moments of feeling safe and secure in this new home. I enjoy the coziness. Yesterday was a nice day outside and I also took time to do some things in the house and relax during the morning time.

We woke to more snow and I have a blocked ear and the sniffles. I went to work on this right away and I think a nap is order to fend off the possibility of getting sick. Our new snow masks arrived in the mail yesterday and they are much better than my old one. It is important for me to keep skin on my face covered in extreme weather as I have eczema and rosacea. I hate when things flare up so I am prudent about protecting my face. I never had a problem with either till I hit 40 and then it went crazy. Both issues have improved greatly since becoming self employed and getting out of the office space.

Been watching Joyce Myers episodes from her website and feeding my spirit as I need to so I don't slide down the mountain again!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A productive day in the barn

This morning after feeding horses we went to Norton to pickup sawdust and horse feed. It was a nice drive and the trees were still flocked with snow. Actually, everything was flocked with snow still. We came back and cleaned all of the stalls and let everyone out in one area or another. No one really wanted to stay out for too long except for Aubrey and Billy (aka Dooley) cause of his wide posterior.

Angel girl went in the arena and was fine till she noticed three geldings eying her over the back gate and one whinnied. You would have thought she were being chased by a wild rapid grizzly bear or something. She really thought about jumping up on the handicap ramp by the gate to the stall area of the barn. We had to close the big back doors for her to calm down. She spent the rest of her time standing next to pony and bits enclosure and when she went into her stall she was happy just staring out her window and taking a nap.

Satire went out in the snow for a little while with his buds and everyone got a chance to stretch their legs. I stretched mine carting tubs and wheelbarrows around and I'm thankful for the snow being plowed around the barn.

When I finished the barn work I came in for a shower and we had a special visitor named Jesse. She is the girlfriend of Dusty, Kylie's brother from another marriage etc. She's a very nice person and she helped Kylie with some of her school work. I cleaned up the house and did some laundry and then took Kylie to Fairlawn because we needed some things to add to our chili. I bought some incense at the  Dollar Store to pitch into the fireplace to make the house smell nice. The outside smells good to as the smoke coming from the chimney carries the scent around the neighborhood.

We started the fire when we got home and I added more to the chili for tomorrow. The dogs are here and they are all sleepy. They were out in the backyard playing today on and off. They run and romp around in the snow and chase each other. Four dogs seems like a lot and sometimes it is a little crowded but the upside is that they exercise each other and never have separation anxiety. Just plenty of fur around though but I can take care of that down at my groom shop by the barn.

Cooper is finally settling in and trusting more. He actually will get up next to Kylie and lay on her and give her kisses. Cooper is the Sheltie I brought home from the county animal shelter. I think Cooper had a rough life before living with us and he is afraid someone will take him because at first he would hide if we tried to take him to the car. Cooper loves car rides but he would be fearful depending on how we would try to lead him out away from the house.

Micah and Cooper are now much closer. Micah tries to be leader of the pack and I have to keep him in check sometimes but he lets Cooper get away with more and Cooper will actually let Micah know he doesn't like being bullied.

Nannabelle Cockatoo enjoyed beans and celery from the chili. She always likes to try or eat what we are eating. We played tug of war with the potholder today and she sang to me to get my attention.

I think those are the most interesting things of the day. Everyone is happy and all is well tonight. It was a little too quiet today around here actually. I don't plan on taking up knitting though!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A snowy day but a fun day

We have about two feet of snow on the ground here right now. It's still snowing... Even though the snow makes the work more challenging it is still fun and I love what I do. I have good friends who helped me today. My old neighbor Andrew showed up this afternoon with a buddy with a truck with a plow on the front. I called Andrew earlier in the day and ask if he knew anyone. The driveway was plowed and the parking area behind the barn.

I didn't go to the feed store today because the stuff I need is still at the Norton store. It is a further drive and so I will go in the morning and hopefully the roads should be better. I did get out and get Kylie some waterproof boots and some better gloves.

At the end of the day we played on the big snow mound at the end of the parking lot area. We got soaked and had a great time. The barn is cozy with all the snow encasing it. The fire performed a little better today but it is still cold. I think this weather calls for some chili which I will throw in the pot tonight.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Curse desk jobs and the fire that won't light

I had a day of training today for a part time job I can do at home. I had to sit from 9 in the morning until 6 tonight. I simply despise sitting.... I want to move around all of the time. The time of day that I would be working in the barn I was sitting listening to trainers and filling out paperwork. I just wanted to puke.

The training room had a vent problem so there was no heat and it is really cold when you are sitting still so I wore my coat all day and the coffee machine had no cups so no hot coffee either. I have three more days of this nonsense and I can then work from home all day Friday and then start evening hours on Monday. At least I can get the restlessness out of my system before I have to sit down and make calls.

My dogs missed me apparently very much as they acted like I had been gone for years. I was smothered in wriggling furry bodies as soon as I sat on the couch. Plenty of pawing and licks and snuggling. I missed Kylie and all of my fur babies in the house and in the barn. One good thing that happened today is another pet sitter called me and wants to refer all of her farm clients to me as she is recovering from an injury. I would love to do more farm and horse sits. She has a client that has alpacas too so that would be grand.

I dread tomorrow because of the snow which is now up to my knees. I don't mind driving but I hate not being here to make sure things go right. I also need to get to Medina Farmers Exchange because we need sawdust. I will have to call them tomorrow and see if they really are going to deliver or not. Maybe they can leave it in the driveway and I can just throw it on the pickup and drive it back to the barn myself as I won't get stuck in my truck.

My snow plow man has decided not to plow for me this year so in between breaks I am going to have to locate someone else to do this driveway. It had to be a huge snow the week I'd be tied up. Have I whined enough yet?

The furnace in the block building appears to be fixed thanks to my friendly neighbor and he also helped with the driveway today. Kylie helped do things and did her school work and Shirley helped out at the barn. I went out to the barn when I got home and it was nice to feed and do my farm chores and afterwards to wrestle with Kylie and the dogs in the snow in the backyard.

I'll have to go to bed as soon as we feed Satire and make sure I am rested for the day long training again tomorrow. I will be bringing a sandwich and my own coffee I think. Yes, and a blanket to put over my legs.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Elusive Pick Up Truck...

I finally got the call late this evening that big yellow as in my big yellow Dodge pickup with four wheel drive is finished. New u-joints, wheel bearings, and shocks. I never thought I'd miss that truck but I do. It is a nice ride and it's mine. I hate asking for rides and I have to get sawdust and horse feed tomorrow.

Today was a fun day anyway but cold. I was glad to get into the house and start a fire. I finished the caulking around the window and the fireplace. Tomorrow I will hang curtains in Kylie's bedroom and try to start the sun room finally and at least get the crack around the top of the entire room filled.

Next week will be difficult because I will be in training and will have to make up farm work in the evening. I've done it before when I've had too but I want to get as much done for winter as possible tomorrow.

Snow is coming tomorrow so having my truck back will be very important in getting around. I hate that we have to get a lot of snow the week I won't be here all day to deal with it but I will make previsions for everything before Monday. I'm picking up more salt tomorrow to use on the drive way. Hopefully the snow will stay further northeast and stay light for us this week.

I also have to deal with a septic issue because I think the pump is not working causing septic gas to backup. I am hoping it will be checked out early in the week and is covered by a warranty.

After next week I will be able to work from home part time which will help with the utilities. I also don't want to miss out on all the action because this place is always interesting and fun most of the time.

I think I gained some weight while my brother was here and because of Thanksgiving. I can't gain I have to loose to have a real good fling before I turn fifty. They tell me it is hard to loose weight when menopause kicks in so I want to do it before it is too late!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Blogging by a Warm Fire

I am sitting by a very warm fire with the lights out just typing and watching the fire. A great end to a pretty good day. My brother Greg went home because he has to work tomorrow. He was a big help to us while he was here and took me where I needed to go. The truck is still not back but I think we can make it till the weekend and I should have it by then.

The furnace is still acting up in the block building and a friend is working to try and find the problem. Angel went out in the arena today and seemed calmer but she seems to like to stick around the pony and he is kind of enjoying it. I want to call her Aretha for some reason, maybe cause she needs to get the barn diva attitude.

Winter weatherizing has begun on the house. I didn't take much time but I did get the front door sealed and part of the window caulked so I can put the window trim back up. I ran out of painters caulking and so I will have to get more to finish. I will next be working on Kylie's bedroom, the sun room, and the back door.

I ended the evening with actually doing something fun. I got a lesson on riding a four wheeler and got a ride on one going very fast and making lots of sharp turns. It was scary and fun at the same time. I have a great sense of humor but I have spent most of my life working and haven't had many opportunities to just be playful. I had a hard time just having fun so I will have to practice more doing fun things and being more carefree I think.

Here I am with the fire and a cozy house and I feel really blessed tonight.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Brrrr.... Trucks, School Work, and The First Snow

Everyone except the new horse went out today. I picked all of the stalls and cleaned up the feed room which gets on my nerves when it is all dirty and disorganized. My brother came to the rescue and helped Kylie get caught up on school and they worked all day together.

My truck is still being repaired as it needs new wheel bearings and they should be done tonight. I am so grateful for the help because the truck has low miles and it is our only transportation now. If everything is fixed it will be a good ride for a long time. I will only need some of the rust fixed and shocks done and that will be it.

The first snow is here and it is light but a reminder that winter is coming and we need to be ready.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sleepy Day.... Not

Feeding horses in the A.M. and a pet sit. I had to visit Tractor Supply for a couple of things and then back home. I took a nap but had to get up for another pet sit and to notarize something for a friend. I forced myself to get up and took a shower and went out to do what I had to do. The situation fell through for the friend and so I went to the pet sit. I talked my brother to taking me to the tack shop just to look around.

After our little trip out we came back and did chores. We were invited by a friend to go out for ice cream and that was a treat.

It is a damp day and I am finally in bed and anxious just to burrow down in blankets and sleep. I'll be ready for anything tomorrow but tonight I will savor sleep.

Cody, Peppermint, Mares, Furnaces, Etc.

I rode Cody today with Shirley. She rode Echo and he did well and Cody and I just kind of farted around in the arena but it was good cause Cody got some exercise and attention. There was a peppermint fairy in the barn evidenced by random candy canes placed in the cross tie area.

Angel is a wild girl. No contact with other horses in years, no concept of space or ground manners. She was terrified to see the other horses in the pasture over the gait and at the same time very excited. It will take a while for her to settle in to her new digs and feel secure.

The furnace in the block building appears to be fixed at last. I am so happy!

The etc. is for everything that happened today that I am to tired to describe here. It wasn't a dull day and I enjoyed it very much.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Trying out the New/Used Camera

The Mother of All Hay Days

The good Lord must have known this Saturday was going to be over the top for me. I was originally supposed to work at a local kennel all morning and my dad was supposed to come in the late evening. My dad is a trip and a half and exhausting because he is very eccentric and self centered. Also, we were getting the new horse, and three hay deliveries and Monti needed bathed and picked up.

The kennel called and they didn't need me after all and my dad called and he had car trouble and wasn't coming. Thank goodness.

The first to arrive was the horse Angel. She did well but hadn't seen another horse in years or sawdust. She was nervous and excited but happy and she finally went into her stall. We had to have Mac move back to Dave's parents farm for the stall space so he came next to pick up Mac.

Next instead Angel's hay coming to us, I went with Dusty and Kylie and we picked it up. Dave had returned with hay for Billy by the time we got back. After unloading Dusty's truck he was off to get the rest of Angel's hay and the big hay delivery came. So, 200 bales of hay in the loft which is a barn owner's blessing.

Everyone worked so hard to get it done. My truck went to Seville for repairs and so a quiet evening but enough events for one day to be sure.

The Day After, and Then Some

Went to barn to clean some stalls. The dog who is staying overnight arrives. I love Monti he is an awesome lab mix. While his owner is dropping him off I get a call from someone in town from Wyoming who wants to drop their dog off for a bath and pet sit while the shop. 

So, stall cleaning, dog washing and another pet sit. I did an intense stall cleaning because after talking to the vet I decided to take the senior mare for the elderly lady under certain conditions. I figured it would work out and the Lord would bless for helping out since the lady couldn't pay the full board but she had 80 bales of hay to give and things have a way of working out if you have faith. 

Unfortunately, while driving to Medina to do the pet sits it turned out that my truck has a major issue which is a u joint. My brother has decided to stay a few days so we have wheels and Kylie's dad has volunteered to fix the truck as I can't afford to fix it now. I also find I think I have a pretty big cavity and will call my dentist to see if he'll take payments which he probably will because he is a pretty generous guy. 


Thanksgiving, Thank You Lord

Up early, feed horses, put ham in oven, go do pet sit. All done it's 10:00. Did a quick clean up of the sun room where we will eat. Started rest of dinner. Another pet sit and then dinner, a fire and some relaxation. Food turned out great and it was a perfect day in our new home. I had bought a used leather couch set and it is very comfortable and I even turned on the TV.

The Cleaning Marathon

After the previous days events I was whooped so after feeding horses in the AM I went back for a nap. When I got up I began the cleaning Marathon and it ended at 2:30 a.m. that night but it was all done and so was the dressing leaving just the simple stuff for Thanksgiving morning. I had a pet sit in the middle and the usual chores. Kylie's dad also came to see her and helped out some by picking up a couple of items I forgot from shopping from Hell night the day before.

I am so glad I decided to cook Thanksgiving dinner here and get the house organized. We lit a fire and enjoyed the cozy warmth. This is our first holiday here and I love this house and the good feelings I have here.

This day can end now!

Days can be deceiving as they can start out okay and then turn to crap. I woke happy and relaxed and went about my usual chores and then came in to get Kylie to start her day because she had an orthodontist appointment. I took her to the appointment, went to the feed store in Copley, and then to Petsmart because Annabelle was almost out of Avi-cakes and that would be a disaster for us all because when a Cockatoo wants something they will let you know.

When I got back I fed Satire and did more chores and let the big three out and by that time my dog grooming appointment arrived. The appointment went so, so.... the dog is very sweet but afraid and didn't respond well to commands. She warned me when I went to clip her side and she was hard to clip so I gave her a bath and dried her. She did well for the two later but the clipping was rough.

As soon as I finished the dog and she went home I went into the house and we got company in the barn. An older couple had found us on the internet and they wanted to see me because they had an elderly neighbor who must leave her home and has an elderly horse with no place to go. I agreed to meet the owner and go see the horse before I agreed to anything. I jumped in the big yellow pickup with Kylie and off we went. The truck started making some bad noises but we proceeded. I met the owner of the horse and got the story and the horse Angel who is 25. I told them I would have to speak to the horses vet and I would think about it overnight.

Back to the barn to do chores, Kylie and I had missed lunch and dinner at this point. I decided to go get the few things we needed for Thanksgiving dinner at the store so I wouldn't have to get them on the next day when the stores would be packed. Again, we jumped into the pickup and went to the store. By this time I was fried pretty much so we got the things we needed and then I realized I had lost the cash in my pocket somewhere in the store... never to be found. It really upset me but then I have never had that happen except one other time. I just decided the good Lord must have had a different purpose for it and someone must have needed it more. But, I knew I needed to go home and to eat and get some sleep.

Yes, the day could end. I was too tired that night to finish this post so I am writing it now five days later!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Drama, Drama, Sawdust, Drama

We had a real down pour this morning and some nice big puddles. I waited till this afternoon to go get sawdust and Kylie wanted to look at tack so we did. I bought a used saddle pad I had been eying forever and we found a nice leather halter for Aubrey that was half off.

We went to the feed store and I gave them a hard time as I feel this is my job. I did get sawdust and some new feed to start Cody and Aubrey on. After a label comparison it seems the feed may be better then the feed I have bought before and it's cheaper.

We came home to play around with the new stuff and we had several visitors.  It seems tonight wasn't a good night to do family horse stuff as some folks weren't in the best of moods. Thank goodness the horses were and Cody was the gentlemen he always is, I love him so for being so sweet and willing to please. I rode him again a little tonight and ordered some reins tonight too. I'd like to ride him a little everyday like I used to if I can.

I was pretty down this evening afterwards because of some drama so I ventured over to visit the neighbor and had a sip of moonshine. Interesting stuff, I don't drink but sure needed to just get my mind off of things and relax. I didn't get totally drunk or anything just sort of sleepy. I feel better now and I enjoyed the company and just talking. Maybe I have discovered a new form of therapy... we'll see.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sleeping the day away, enjoying the arena

I fed everyone and went into the house, I went back to bed. I decided to get up and take a shower and thought that would wake me up. I showered and went back to bed. I don't think I got up till after 2:00. It was great.

I didn't get things done in the house but did get things done in the barn and cooked fried potatoes and eggs for us this evening.

We had barn company later and Billy, Mac and Cody were ridden. I even rode Cody and it felt like old times. My seat is still decent and even though I haven't neck reined Cody  in years he remembered very well. Kylie rode him too and did very well. It was nice to have some rest and recreation today and it was warm then later a full moon.

I have a couple of grooming appointments this week and lots of cleaning to do. I will probably have some pet visits over the holiday too. Tomorrow I am going to solve the sawdust issue once and for all. I am ordering bagged sawdust  because I did the math and it may end up being cheaper. No more sissy delivery boys, I'm all done with that.

It is supposed to rain the next few days which is disappointing after wonderful days like today. I will want to take some power naps for sure but need to press on with whipping the house into shape.

I got a call from my old neighbor today wanting the phone number of the family moved in next door to him (they leased my old house). Apparently, the chickens got loose and made their way over to the neighbors garage and came in by way of the man door. Hilarious I couldn't stop laughing.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Day of Interesting Occurrences

Today was a bit unusual because we had an interesting visitor. A women stopped by the farm who had been interested in buying it but was afraid of the work and repairs. She works with horses and handicapped kids and needs to rent stalls for the winter to use the indoor arena. I liked the idea right off the bat and so we will be getting together to see if it will work for the months of January through April.

Bravo and Riley went home this afternoon. They are two dogs we kenneled for the week. I gave them both baths this morning and brushed and dried them. They will be back before the holidays for another bath and they will be back in January and February for more kenneling.

It occurred to me that this week coming is Thanksgiving. I will need to clean the sun room up and the rest of the house as I will be having dinner here with my brother. I could go to a friends but since this is our first year here I'd like to do a small one for us. So, I am going to be busy in the house this week and try to get everything ready.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Less Moody, Thrift Shops, and Horses in the Barn

Had a productive day today and tried to focus on getting things done instead of moody men. Whenever I really need to be left alone because I want my space and time to think or I have lost interest then they suddenly appear.

We went to a big Salvation Army store today and found some great snow boots, a nice LL Bean jacket and some jeans. I am loosing weight and my pants are starting to get too loose (Praise the Lord and Thank You Jesus). Winter clothes are important to work in the barn when the temps fall so we need to be prepared.

It was a nice day for all of the horses and everyone got to stretch their legs either by going out on the big pasture or being free lunged. The two quarters got some exercise in the arena and seemed to have more energy and look like they are loosing some horsey cellulite. Aubrey did a nice job for Kylie lunging so she took him out and let him run in the pasture.

The barn is a nice place for horses and they all seem very happy. The two quarters are starting to get a little more cuddly with us and all the other horses are very warm and loving. It is a great peaceful environment for everyone of human and animal kind. 

Loving my Farm, and the Animals

I love them all. The horses, the dogs, the rabbit, the birds, the cats. I revel in every moment of the day with them and with my daughter Kylie. I am jealous of my time and protect it. Although, some days can be difficult for one reason or another. One reason today is sawdust and the fact that the dogs pulled down a plate of Baklava off the counter and ate it. Oh, and did I mention moody men...

I still rejoice in the seasons good or bad, the land and my companions here. The more I work the stronger I get and the more confident I feel. God has a plan for us I know. I am resigned to just go with it, go where He leads. Abraham was sent out into a new land without really anything excepts God's promise. The story of Noah speaks for itself etc. Who am I to question God's plan for my future or making a life here on this farm. I must learn to accept God's gifts and believe in His wisdom without question or worry.

Kylie had a great moment with her horse Aubrey. She lunged him tonight and he did a marvelous job for her. She felt very good about it and I was very proud of her. I took some time to reconnect with Cody tonight and just play with him. He is so wonderful and I don't stop and take enough time for him many days. He has his pasture mates but I need to do my part and spend time with him. I also need to ride him.

Sleepy now and looking forward to an exciting day tomorrow in the barn. It is a pleasure to pour coffee and walk to the barn in the morning. I get caught up in what I am doing and the morning flies by but it seldom feels like work. This is all very good.

Men and Mood Swings

Need I say more...

I don't want to blog about sawdust but I must

Sawdust shouldn't be complicated but it seems it is for this farm. The land the barn and arena sit on is a little odd shaped and the large entry to the barn is at the far end. It seems at one point a sawdust truck got stuck making a delivery here so, apparently, the ground must be dry as the desert sand, the sun must be northeast and the crow must sit on the chimney for all the conditions to be right before Smith's Brothers will take a chance and make a delivery.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Rain, Bills, Mud and Driving Harnesses

The day was cold and dry in the morning so I let Bit and Pony out. Aubrey got a chance to graze a little too. At lunch time I let the little ones back in and put the three big ones out. It rained later in the day and they got wet and then rolled in the arena.

I took time to get caught up on bills and funs stuff like that. Evening chores were simple since I had cleaned most of the stalls in the morning. The place is muddy but that is all part of the farm seen. We need the rain but I hope we get some more sunshine this month. I can't believe Thanksgiving is just around the corner.

Dave came up to spend time with Kylie and his horses and Dusty came too and brought a big harness to work Billy with. It was very exciting to see Billy in full gear and Dusty working him. Dusty agrees with me that Billy is too fat and should loose weight and I got his blessing to trim him down some. Billy jiggles all over when he walks so he has some room to cut back.

Dave helped Kylie work Aubrey and it went very well as Aubrey learned he can't spin his hindquarters around. Kylie also put her harness on pony and he was happily going along with her. Pony is like a different little horse now because he is content and likes to have a job and a girl that loves him. I also lunged Cody and brushed the mud off him. His coat is very soft and shiny.

The day was cold and wet but the evening was fun. I started a fire and that always takes the edge off the chilly evenings. Kylie is feeling better today too after last nights trauma. I did get some laundry and house cleaning done but have more to do before things are in order.

I have a Harley parked in the barn and covered and I finally got Griff to admit he is moody. I explained that it is weird for a man to be so moody and that he must have a feminine side but he didn't think that was so. I guess if he has all the mood swings then that saves me the trouble. (laughing here).

Monday, November 15, 2010

Finances, Being Sore, and Dog Fights

Today started out the same and my knee felt much better. I got a call early by a person wanting to look at the car I have for sale and they came and liked it so it is a done deal. It was a big relief to get it taken care of because I own the truck free and clear so no car payment anymore.

As the day progressed of course my knee started swelling and by the end I was ready to get off of it. We were letting all the dogs go out for potty and there was a dog skirmish. Kylie and I got bit trying to separate them but it was superficial and no stitches or hospital visits. For the rest of the week everyone will have play time in separate groups.

I'm way behind on housework and laundry again so I will try and get caught up tomorrow. As for now, we are all wiped out and I am not even going to attempt to clean anything. Tomorrow will be a better day.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sawdust, Mowers, Busting my Knee, Pie, a Fat Stubborn Horse and Too Many Dogs

This morning I was sure I wouldn't do that much and get started on the walls in the sun room and catch up on laundry. I didn't get those things even started but here is what I did do. I found two chubby quarter horses outside the  barn door this morning ready to come in. I cleaned their stalls and fed the rest of the horses and let pony and bit out.

I spread manure, shoveled the rest of the sawdust out of the back of the pick up truck and hosed it off. I disengaged the gears on the riding mower so I could push it into the block building to keep it out of the weather. I walked to the house to start laundry by way of the basement door and stepped on a piece of plywood that was wet and fell.

The plywood is partially buried by the door because the guy who owned the house before ripped off the garage and left a big hole and never filled it in. He planned on expanding the house but gave up because him and his wife split. So, there is a big hole next to the house with dirt and gravel piled up and a plywood ramp half buried at an angle that happens to be as slick as ice when it is wet.

The plywood is no more because after tearing my knee apart and wrenching my arm when I fell (bawling my eyes out and then taking a shower) I went and got my sledge hammer and shovel. It is in pieces and under shovels of dirt and gravel so no one will fall again. I am now sitting in my chair with ice on me knee and will be very stiff tomorrow.

After pushing the mower my neighbor who has been working on it came over to put the starter in and unfortunately it was the wrong one. He is charging the battery overnight since it had sat for so long and is pretty much dead. I bought a pie at the store and convinced him even though he was sulking to have a piece. I didn't have to do much persuading.

I decided to exercise one of Kylie's dad's horses since he hadn't been worked in a few days. Billy is a huge (trying not to say fat here) quarter horse. It went okay but Billy is pretty stubborn and he is in need of some serious exercise. I've cut down on his daily rations but he really needs a regular exercise program and to burn some of the fat he has accumulated.

The dog watching is going well but it is crowded and awkward at times since we have two pack leaders in the same house. I have to stay vigilant when they are all together so there are no squabbles. I have utilized the block building during the day so that Bravo and Riley have some space and my dogs have theirs.

I know tomorrow I will be very sore and stiff. Hopefully, the discomfort will ware off if I get up and get moving.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Young Man's Compliment, 6 Dogs, Aubrey, Mulching Leaves... and More

Today I think was the warmest and prettiest by far. I wore a short sleeve shirt and felt the warmth of the sun on my skin. With winter being so long and drab here, every drop of sunshine is important. We will have two guest dogs until next Saturday and last night was the first overnighter. My dogs had to change the dynamics of the pack to make room. I have a very large German Sheppard sleeping on my feet right now. Micah, who is head of the pack below me is now in third place. The Golden, Riley, is somewhere in the middle.

My bed last night was pouring over with doggies. Heads and tails as far as the eye could see. If it were dead winter I'd have been in heaven. As it was, there was a bit of restlessness that is to be expected as the two new guys get used to being here with us. Breakfast and dinner went well for everyone and the usual going out and coming in for exercise and potty went okay too. The cats and the new dogs are all good as well except Annabelle the Too is a little concerned when Riley stands on his hind legs and puts his paws on her cage to look at what she is eating. I just discovered that Annabelle likes Pringles. I ate a couple in the sun room and she banged on the cage bars with her beak just like a knock at the door. I thought maybe she wanted a chip and yes she did. She wanted it so much she grabbed it and climbed to her higher perch to savor the treat.

I cleaned, Satire's, Mack's, Aubrey's, and Billy's stalls this morning. Afterwards, I lunged Aubrey and then Cody. Aubrey is very obstinate and I worry for Kylie's safety so I put a regular halter and a chain on his halter, over his nose, and up the side of his halter. He persists in turning his rump towards you when he tries to avoid going forward and more control was needed. Aubrey was very funny when he turned his rump around but I could very easily bring his head back around and move him off again. He also learned that he can't crowd me and Kylie is very good at teaching this. He's so smart that he is a real challenge.

I put Pony and Bit outside in the morning until noon and these past two days I have called them and they come from the pasture into the barn on their own. Pony even walks straight into their stall and Bit follows. I'm proud of those guys as they listen very well, at least Pony does.

I spread the manure on the pasture and mulched many of the oak and other leaves that are heavy on the grass. As soon as I moved the leaves the horses moved over and started grazing. The grass will be better next year now that the leaves are cleared from the upper part of the pasture or mulched enough to compost into the soil.

Kylie and I went to Walmart for a couple of things and as we were walking out I commented that I didn't feel old and Kylie said she didn't feel old either (give me a break she is only 13).  A young man was walking near us and paid me a nice compliment that I didn't look as old as I was like his mother. I told him I hoped he told her that often!

It has been quiet here the past few days. There is someone that lives in the neighborhood that visits most days and sometimes I think he is a real hotty but that could just be because there aren't that many guys around. On one hand I miss the playful visits and on the other hand I am annoyed at how he suddenly vanishes for a few days and then reappears like a rabbit in a hat.

I finished cleaning the rest of the stalls before the evening feeding and look forward to a break from cleaning tomorrow. I hung so coat hooks on the back of the sun room door as we always have barn coats etc. that we need to have a place for. I like the sun room because there are lots of shelves, a tile floor, lots of windows and places for the barn stuff so we don't have to drag it all through the rest of the house, it is very much like a mud room. Tomorrow I start filling in places in the sun room to get it ready for winter. The water damage in that room was pretty bad and I need to spread joint compound over the walls and then I will paint them. I will also use something to seal around the windows and put the face plates back on the electrical outlets.

I still have to put some painters compound around the front window and nail the window frame back on and hang the rest of the curtains and pictures. I hope to complete this stuff by Thanksgiving. I managed to take two naps today and I am really sleepy now so time to crash with the dogs for a good nights sleep.

Mac Takes a Nap at Kindred Acres Resort!

The Herd Moves in Closer after Getting a Drink

Friday, November 12, 2010

Six Tails a Wagging, A Stampede, To Much Water

Right now I am looking at six tails a wagging in my living room. We are dog sitting for a week. Now I have 3 golden retrievers, a sheltie, a collie mix, and a German Sheppard. They are all pacing right now and probably will be more settled by in the morning. Dustie my senior Golden is hanging out on the couch minding his own business and Cooper the Sheltie is at my feet just watching the other dogs pace.

A very portly quarter horse was pestering Bit and Pony causing Pony to kick at the gait and he broke the snap thereby releasing both he and bit into the arena with a very large horse. They all decided to head for the pasture much to my disapproval. I caught the rotund quarter horse before he escaped with the nimble Bit and Pony.

I must have been shaken up because I forgot and left the water running into the tub in the arena and caused a small flood. I almost forgot to mention that Annabelle went on an adventure to the barn and followed me around in the arena. I was hoping she might want to fly a little but she was afraid. We will have to take her out there more often so she can have a taste of freedom and stretch her wings. She was happy to get a snuggle in her blanket though and was much quieter when we took her back to the sun room.

Josh, Kylie's half brother is home from the Marine's stopped by just now. He is such a handsome young man with so much energy. Time flies and I can remember when he was a very small boy and now a grown man.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Quiet Compared to Yesterday

This morning I was up and running. I started with feeding the horses, a pet sit, and the feed store. I returned home to clean the newbies stalls out and bring them in from pasture. They did a much better job this time following the feed bucket into the barn. Slowly they are coming along.

We had a visitor who may know of someone interested in moving a senior horse in which is exciting as I love senior horses. We also had someone stop by and purchase the granite table top which has been in the block building since I moved here. It was very heavy and I am thrilled to get rid of it.

But, it was very quiet today as there were no Harley's, work vans or any other odd vehicles circling the house or barn. Not even an ex-husband to stir things up for that matter. The boredom became too much for Kylie and me so we went to Dairy Queen.

Pony and Bit had a very good afternoon with Kylie making up for lost time and playing with them as well as grooming them and making them do silly things!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Barn Routines, Interesting Visitors, and Training

This morning I was surprised to see two plump quarter horses staring in the window at me as I did chores. I have had to walk out to the pasture or drive out to retrieve the new horses but they are catching on to breakfast. It isn't there fault as they have been on pasture 24/7 most of their lives. I like being able to call and have the horses come in but it will take time for these guys to understand the barn routine.

We had an interesting visitor today who stopped by and his name is Dale. He has brought cows and miniature donkeys to pasture down the road for years and I've never met him. Dale had an Australian Cattle dog with him and demonstrated the commands he uses when sending the dog out to herd and to retrieve him. It was awesome and something I hope to learn to train someday as I am a big fan of herding dogs.

Kylie's new horse Aubrey is doing very well. He has a lovely trot and whoas when being free lunged. You can see the horse and her getting closer every day. What a wonderful thing to be able to watch.

Tomorrow I will try and focus more on what needs to be done and less on distractions and chatter. The days go quickly and I have plenty to do before the real winter sets in. I started chili tonight and am keeping up with the laundry and the barn chores are going really well. I have some pet sitting to do tomorrow and Thursday also.

Dogs ears, tractors, and confessing

I have two Goldens who get yeast in their ears. I have a special product that will eliminate the yeast and prevent it from growing but when I use it ears on my dogs the ear flapping sounds afterwards like a helicopter. I need to use it more often and then things wouldn't get so out of hand. I love my Goldens but their allergies can be hard to manage.

The Russian got two new batteries today. I am getting it ready for a buyer to look at. I love the thing but it is too big to keep in the barn and too big for me. I put the clutch down on it today and I could hardly hold it down cause I am too short. I will be selling it and making more than I paid for it and so I am content.

Sometimes when you share your thoughts with someone it can complicate a friendship. I am hoping for simplicity and I am trying to resist stirring the pot so to speak in order to keep it simple. My nature is to get into mischief so this is a true test :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sunshine and Productivity

Today was a much better today I think because the sun was out and things were bright.  Started out with chores and letting the little ones out to pasture. When I came back Dave had stopped by and was working on moving the bars on some of the stalls so we don't have another repeat of the pump incident.

Shirley came and we all had some fun watching her work with Echo and we let the big three out. Kylie and Shirley worked with Aubrey some and he is doing very well but is very smart which is good and bad. Kylie will have to find ways to keep ahead of him.

I took down the hanger for the picks and made one for the new barn broom which is awesome. I also put up some screws to hang the lunge whips on as I am always trying to find which wall or corner one of them is leaning on. Now everything has a place and should be easier to find.

I played with the birds and put a new rope perch in Annabelle's cage so she can get into her birdie tent at night. She shredded her old one but that is what they are for. Annabelle will need a new tent soon as she has made holes all over to crawl out of and there isn't much fabric left.

The dogs were stinky and loosing bushels of hair so I washed and groomed all four in a grooming assembly line. They have all crashed now and are sleeping. They look and smell really nice and their fur is all shiny. I am hoping for less hair and dander in the house for awhile. Trimmed nails too because I hate when they step on my feet it hurts.

I expect it will be a busy day tomorrow. I have some business to take care of and calls to make. I have one more thing that I have been putting off and that is the litter box in the basement. Not one of my favorite chores but it must be done.

I hope to start working more with Cody. He is a great horse and I love him. It is time to do new things together and enjoy this place. Maybe there is more to life than manure....

Micah, he's got lots of personality!

Dusti, my senior dog and he loves to be groomed

My Dogs! They all got bathes today

I love my dogs, they follow me everywhere when I let them and I am always surrounded by my boys!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Manure.... Sawdust... It's my life

Kylie went to another church function today with the Perkins and I'm very happy because I am really bad about not getting her to church and it is good to have help with this. After chores I put the Razzleberry Pie in the oven and made some phone calls and let the pony and bit out to pasture.

I brought in the little guys after visiting the neighbor I decided to make a sawdust run. I brought home three bucket loads and was lucky I didn't loose much as the tailgate dropped when I was putting the tarp over the top. I had a very slow ride home but it was worth it because I don't like money basically blowing in the wind.

I cleaned all the stalls which weren't as bad as I thought they would be. I am thinking I will be taking a break tomorrow because I am tired of manure basically...

My brother came down with 4 gallons of milk and some bread because he thinks prices are going to go up in a couple of weeks. I'm really glad to get the extra groceries as Kylie drinks a lot of milk.

I managed to get into the house before dark today and start a fire. I'm really sore and sleepy so after Satires last feeding I am going to sleep.

The white stuff was coming down a little today and I was thinking we will have a long winter this year.  The fireplace helps fight off the gloom of cold winter days. I think that is what I like best about this house. This is such a good place to be and I'm happy here. At times it's hard keeping up and balancing the finances and two houses for awhile but hopefully things will get easier in that respect. It is all worth it even though I have some anxiety about the future. I will press on, shovel more manure, and try not to inhale too much sawdust!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Preacher

More Aubrey's Destiny

Aubrey, a young girls dream

Horses, Goodwill, and Angels in Disguise

Kylie and I got off to a good start. We had a telephone conference with her teacher and she is doing okay but needs to complete more hours online. I can give her credit for many things she does with me that involve math, reading, tech stuff, and other life experiences.

We moved on to finding an outfit for her to wear to a church function. We went to Goodwill to see if we could find some skirts etc. We came away with a nice overstuffed winter vest for the barn, a couple of hats, some jeans and a dress. Kylie ended up wearing something I had in my closet with a nice blouse. She went to a womans retreat with some friends and had such a good time she's going tomorrow.

When we got back to the barn we played around a bit with Shirley and Preacher. Kylie and I both rode Preacher and then Shirley showed us some things with Aubrey who is a fast learner. Later in the evening I cleaned Satire's stall and I lunged Cody. I will have to really clean stalls tomorrow because we are out of sawdust and I'm going to get some in the A.M. I put Cody in cross ties and brushed him and moisturized his mane and tail.

While I was out in the barn my friend Kim called and asked if I wanted something to eat because she was picking something up. So she brought me some Chipolte.

Aubrey pulled off the board next to his stall and exposed an electrical outlet which I was going to try to cover tonight. I called Griff and asked him if he had any electrical stuff. Within a half an hour he pulled in with a friend and they shortened the tubing and wires that went to the outlet and secured it above the stall. It is much safer now and will not be a danger to any horse. They also secured a loose outlet and fixed the connectors that were busted.

The little things that people do that are unexpected really relieve a great deal of stress for me. I work hard and I'm pretty handy but I am only one person. The Lord has sent me some pretty remarkable helpers lately. Ones that have helped me for simple things like grooming their dog that got into burrs, a pie and some coffee. All very simple things.

There is also a TP fairy in the block building which is much appreciated.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Crazy day, but not motivated

Cold this evening and the barn gets good and cold. The horses did not want to come in and so I went and got them and let the other ones out. Preacher was naughty because I let loose of him half way to the barn and he turned around and went right back out.

I ended up messing with the pump again because it has an adjustment on it that has to be just right or the water doesn't turn completely off. Our new neighbor came over to fix the toilet ring because I traded for grooming their dog and he helped me adjust it. We also turned the water on that controls the sprinklers and so I moved the hose out of the middle of the barn to the faucet over their to simplify things.

I ended up walking out in the rain to catch two other horses tonight. I was instructed that they would be okay but I didn't have the heart to leave them in the cold rain all night. Just can't do it. I gave everyone extra hay for the night and came in to get warmed up.

I was really blessed with the family that took the old house they are just so very nice. God blesses me in so many ways.

This day started out and I thought I am going to stay in the house and rest but you know when you plan on that everyone else doesn't cooperate. When I did go to the barn to start stalls I was dragging but in spite of not being motivated things did get taken care of.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bit is good for Randy this time

Bit is shorter now

Randy trimming pony

Not one of my better days...

This morning started out pretty quiet and I thought I'd stay in the house for awhile but then the previous owners father came by to finish fixing the furnace in the block building where I do dog grooming and kenneling. I left him cursing at a rusty pipe and went into the barn and helped Kylie with Aubrey and Cody.

The next thing Randy comes and he trims five horses. The last one was Mac and his stall is where the water hydrant is where he can hang his head out of the stall. I was thinking I'd let him out soon and left his halter on forgetting about the Hydrant (I knew myself or someone would make that mistake sooner or later).

I decided instead to let the other horses out first and then let Mac and Billy out later and went in the house for a little while and Kylie returned to the barn to find that Mac had gotten his halter caught on the hydrant handle and broke it off.




I pulled the old pump handle of another hydrant that was in the feed room. I called Griff to see if he had a large wrench to try and open a valve on another hydrant which he dropped off but it wasn't the right wrench so I went back to fixing the other hydrant. I put the handle on but had trouble lining up the bolts and called Dave for advise. We were discussing the possibilities when I took my finger and pushed down on the rod by accident which was all it took to line everything up.  So, I have that feeling where I could kick myself for letting it happen but feel better that I could fix it.

By the end of the day we had gotten everyone out of the barn, cleaned the stalls and cleaned things up. I didn't feel overall that I accomplished much in the day but the furnace is fixed without any cost to me, the hooves all trimmed, and I learned how to change a pump handle without water gushing all over the barn and drowning the horses!


Tomorrow will be a sawdust day. We need more to keep up with the manure of mass destruction!