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, May 30, 2013

Waiting for a small army to arrive

I cleaned the stalls for the little ponies and stacked it all on the edge of the garden, months ago I mixed it into the soil. I thought the soil in the garden looked dry and overworked but the neighbors said it had been a good garden for many years.

It's been tilled now twice, no composting at all of the manure.... I had to really think, why? At our old house the soil over the years of using manure as a fertilizer had turned very dark and rich. I pictured what it looked like as I pondered my current dilemma with the soil here. I thought how nice and rich, shovels full of dark topsoil, full of worms'.. castings.

The soil here is cracked under the deceivingly green grass, it's hard as a rock. We had clay at the other place but not like this. I talked to the neighbor and they said this area had been a cornfield for many years. I had read what generations of farming land could do and this confirmed my suspicions.

It was the visualization of my past experience that shed light on the real problem and the solution. The nutrients has been drained by farming and chemicals further applied with lawn/weed treatments over time. THERE ARE NO WORMS!! To compost anything.

I was appalled at the thought of the barrenness of the situation and that the earth being damaged has taken so long and still hasn't recovered. I was moved into action with an urgent amazon.com search, I knew what I had to do and it was without fear that I promptly hit one click to purchase red wigglers, the small but powerful worm warriors that sole purpose in life is to turn organic material into castings (worm poop).

$7 bought 200 WW's (worm warriors) later this month I will summon a thousand. I watch and wait for the miraculous army of wormy farmers to arrive, I will release them as soon as they arrive in numbers the likes of which Litchfield soil has ever seen at least not recently.

There are also no toads, haven't found a one. A good indicator of a thriving environment are toads, for now working on the enrichment of my garden and the surrounding soil is primary. I am hoping the worms don't defect to the neighbor's organic farm next door, I will have to entice them with as much organic material from the ponies as I can.

I can see it now, the mailman will arrive, the package in his hands dropping it on the door step, I will be waiting and then a few moments later, the battle cry. Go forth... go forth.
   

Monday, May 27, 2013

Blah stands for today

I am happy for more rain but when the skies are overcast and it's cold and damp it gets me down. I'm tired and sleepy, did all the things I need to do with the critters but I am looking forward to a nice warm sleep.

It's good to have a crash day, I have a hard time just doing nothing though, boredom is not something I can tolerate for very long. I like watching movies but would rather move around outside or whatever. Maybe a nap would help, one that doesn't end till in the morning. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Avoiding the big lie

Somethings been happening lately in my life, I am back to working as an underwriter which is a good job, it pays well, I'm good at it and I like it but.... When I decided to trade in a life of a regular paycheck to do what was the love of my life, animals and working on a farm I was a different person.

It's so easy to be sucked into buying things, to desire the artificial and the superficial. The thing I have always hated about people is their short sighted self centered views, it's very easy to fall into that living a life as I do now to buy into that lie, the big trap.

The house I live in now is pretty, it's pimped out with landscaping, the inside is modern and begs for decorating and things to look at but aren't useful. The community is full of nice, down to earth people that love the outdoors and seem to appreciate it but there is still the plenty of things people own that you could say gee I'd love to have it to.

The land is beautiful here, perfect for horses, my animals are all very happy. The one thing that hurts me is not having Cody and Aubrey at home, it doesn't seem right not to have everyone together like it was for years.

I am in a much better position with work than before the farm, the company I work for and also when I was working for Wells Fargo were much better companies and I have been treated well. I don't have the anxiety or the really bad experiences I endured for years at Third Federal to support Kylie, I am very grateful for that change.

In my heart though I miss the animals, working every day to make their lives better. I miss stopping during my day to watch them live and rejoice in living. I miss nurturing them and even the struggle for surviving, it had value because I was doing it for something more than money.

I am a simple person, I could live in a tiny shack in the woods if all of God's creatures, nature, and my family of animals were all around me. I am beyond material things for the most part to make me happy, it's a test though living here and in this lifestyle. It's easy to get caught up in what the world, our society values more.

I have to splash myself with emotional cold water sometimes to wake up from the big lie, to remember the truth and what is real. Living and dying that is real, what is in between has to mean more than buying things or working for money. When I die I want my life to have made a difference if not I've poured it out like sand and have nothing to show for it.

My legacy to hand down to Kylie is not wealth but knowing she was loved, giving her guidance in right and wrong, and teaching her God's ways so that she will carry them with her. I want Kylie to remember life on the farm and God's miracles in our lives and to honor Him living His love and mercy to all.

I just don't want to live from day to day looking forward to the mundane life of living as a consumer and not be aware of a certain responsibility I have to be a better person, to give, and to make a difference. How I can fulfill these desires now remains to be seen, I pray for guidance and remind myself that although I am not as free as I was on the farm to live as I wished that God has plans for me and I must try every moment to remember what is truly in my heart. To ignore the voices of the temptations around me, to not allow myself to be attached to material things which are here today and gone tomorrow and not let my dreams escape me in the dull drum of daily living.

I remember a song about if I had a million dollars and it's a silly song, I've never wished to be rich but I will say by money or by grace if I had it I'd have a farm with pastures as far as the eye could see, on those pastures would be old horses. Ones that have lost their families or just unwanted, I'd sit and watch them all live and rejoice in the simple pleasures I could give them.

There'd be few old dogs around that people might have dumped at the shelter because they were old. I'd be their mom till their time comes. The barn would be a simple one made just for horses not for people and the house well it would be safe and small and adequate.

I'd like lots of trees and a quiet spring near by to pray by and to look back on my life and question myself... have I done enough? If I were to pass my days and nights in such a place would that be selfish too? Could I help children as well by bringing them to a place where there is peace and renewed hope through the triumph over suffering?

I feel old, for if I had a life to live over again I would have pursued my dreams more fervently, I would have eyed the goal and obtained it early on. Now, I wonder sometimes how many good years are left to make a difference to strive and overcome what is inside me to do, always to do.....


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Weather, it's scary

The terrible tornadoes that have hit Oklahoma really bother me, I grew up in an area that had a lot of storms and tornadoes. I have total respect for the force of a tornado, many times living in Granger I would watch out and sometimes take Kylie to the basement. Really, it's nothing to fool around with.

I know the size of the tornado was unimaginable and no one could have been prepared for the destruction it caused but like I said I am ultra sensitive about that particular weather issue.

I hate the humidity that has come here, it always makes me uneasy about a bad storm blowing up. I did take Daniel's heavy coat off, he was so very hot and uncomfortable no matter with a fan or air conditioning, he's very relieved.

So, we'll see what unfolds with the weather.. 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

A better day thanks to benedryl and some sleep

I slept a little longer today but I felt much better, my eyes felt relief. We started off with a trip to the fleamarket which I love, it's a great way to pick up little things you can use and not spend a ton of money.

Next we rented a Mantis, the neighbors let me till with their big tiller and then I used the Mantis and got down and dirty. Following that it was helping Kylie with her health class and then mowing. Next some cleaning up outside and spraying roundup.

We went to see the horses for a little while but didn't do much because of the heat and being tired from the tiller.

I got some sun, the garden is ready to plant and that takes some big things off my May have to do list. Next this week is plant the garden, shave Daniel, clean some cages and move the bigger birds out into the sunroom.

During the week I have to clean the house up some and laundry but I can do that on my breaks.

Kylie will soon be done with school, the house work will be caught up and this summer can be all about the horses.

Relaxing now, a nice shower and then bedtime. 

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Being tired stinks

I slept till nine this morning you'd think I'd be rested enough but I've been sleepy all day. Yesterday I worked hard on finishing loans so I wouldn't have to work today, I mowed the lawn, trimmed and did laundry. I went to bed at a decent hour but I am still tired.

Today we dropped Kylie's boots off to be repaired, I picked up a prescription and stopped in an antique shop just to browse for a minute. Kylie has 3 weeks to finish her school work and she's behind on history so I helped her with it for 2 hours. After that I just didn't want to do a thing.

I like to get things done the weekend but I basically didn't yet anyway. I suppose it being a hotter day and working hard over the week just took a chunk out of my energy. I hope tomorrow I'll have more zip. Got to go see my Cody, clean Nana's cage and help Kylie clean the bunnies cage and laundry and dishes too.

It is nice to have a place to rest though and have peace. It seems strange to me still but I know it should  be this way at least when it needs to be. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

A less than lady like admission

Just shaved the pony, there is nothing worse than shaved pony fur in your bra, itches worse than hay... not a very delicate thing to say but it's the truth.

Recycling, went to Goodwill and bought some small glass statues to put out in the gardens, although they have once been on a shelf they are pretty and inexpensive. I have some colored glass bottles too that are going outside for a little eclectic look.

It was a very busy day at work, I spared weed killer during lunchtime and then after work headed off to Goodwill for some T-shirts to work in because mine all are very worn. When we came back I shaved pony because it's going to get hot out and he has such a think coat he can't shed it out fast enough, he was grateful and stood very well. Little bit kept tormenting him while I was working and finally we let them both run out into the pasture again.

They sleep in the grass during the day and hardly come in the out building anymore, they drink the water out of a tub that fills with rain water. I know they miss the other horses but they have a good life here together.

I went to see the horses last night and they were out in a green pasture with grass up to their knees, they weren't very interested in visiting, just eating.

I have to shave Daniel in the next couple of days, his coat is really thick and he is really hot. Once I finish shaving, all the dogs will get a good bath and be done with the shedding for awhile. It is always a challenge in spring with so much grass to cut and so much fur to cut too.

I am itching all over, will be taking a good shower and throwing these clothes in the laundry for sure. 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A rainy cold weekend

We needed rain there's no doubt but it was cold and windy and an only too familiar kind of weather. Everything has greened up even more and I'm afraid the mower is going to give out, it needs work but now is not the season to send it in for repairs.

I made good use of the inside time and did some laundry and much needed cleaning. I want to be outside all of the time but sometimes you have to work inside to keep up with things too.

We went to the flea market today and it was fun just looking around. I found a little birdcage for $5 for Juliette, it is much smaller than the one she's in but just the right size for her. It will make it easier to put her in the sunroom once the weather gets hot. I cleaned the sunroom this weekend and it will be ready for them as soon as the nights get a little warmer. The birds love being out there, they can see everything and enjoy the sunlight. It's a big room and I need to get some comfy furniture so we can spend more time out there.

I didn't do anything special for Mom's day, it's just me and Kylie and so we just stayed home for the most part. We went to visit the horses and they both look great, Aubrey is still growing and looks even bigger than last month, he's going to be huge if he keeps going.

I'm cold and I'm sleepy, almost wish I had some chilly to eat, seems like it would be good on  a day like this.


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Triumphs and Trials

I've known about some good news for a couple of weeks now but prolonged writing about it because I wanted to think about it for awhile and wrap my mind around it. Since June of last year I have been dealing with issues through the court on the farm we lost.

I put a lot of money and sweat into that place, the owner's took me to court for an additional $15,000 which I ended up filing a counter claim for some of the down payment I gave them. Two weeks ago they agreed to drop their claim in agreement that I would drop mine.

We have been restored and blessed overwhelming since leaving that place but it still felt like a great weight around my neck until now. I should have recovered some of my lost but the legal fees just pursuing it in court would have eaten up any of the funds I'd hope to get back.

I can justify most of the money I spent as a break even situation on a financial analysis easily, I can't justify the mental anguish though and the events that took place from February to June of last year because of how it all came down from dealing with some of my boarders and even some of my friends.

Looking at what is a life worth monetarily deserves mention here, how much value in terms of money can you put on the life of a horse, a dog, or a person. If I hadn't taken a huge risk by trying to buy that farm my life would not be as rich a it was for 2 years in learning and helping out the animals that came to us. Here is a list of those animals and how my 2 year folly impacted them.

Rauls - a horse who was nearing the end of his life at 34 who couldn't see or hear very well and was depressed when he came to us.

The minute he stepped off the trailer and smelled the fresh air and saw the grass he started to change. The light coming in through the clear panel in his stall and throughout the barn aided him in seeing better. The freedom to run with the other horses and stand out in a natural, large, pasture with plenty of trees for shade invigorated him.

When Rauls had an accident with the stall door, he bled really bad, he had started having nose bleeds daily, after that it was a challenge to get him to eat.

Rauls was given around the clock care, walked to the other horses because he was getting feebler, brushed and hand fed by us. He was put down in the big pasture and the last thing he saw was the ancient oak tree. Most of all Rauls knew he was loved, I spent the last days with him almost exclusively, talking to him and cuddling him.

The cost was time and he took some of my heart with him, I can't put a monetary value on it though.

Satire - Another senior horse, he had very little teeth left and it wasn't long after he came that he looked so bad an seemed so depressed that something had to be done. By the time I could talk the owner's into giving him something he could eat it completely overwhelmed him and he coliced and I mean he really coliced. I will never forget how he would bolt his food, I learned one thing about horses and that's how to recognize a starving horse.

The colic was so bad that Satire had to have surgery after finding him 3 times very sick late at night. Major emergency and finally the big one. He pulled through but that meant special food and monitoring and a great deal of our time just focused on him. He was old and went through a serious of health issues before he passed.

The farm as it was set up provided a safe place for Satire without fear of him being hurt by other horses, especially when larger barns let horses out without thinking in large herds, we tried to give him special places and we allowed him to do things we wouldn't have for other horses. His stall was large and he had natural light. We fed him 4 times a day and took great care to make sure the feeding was right.

The cost was huge on time and the frustration with the owner's over every little thing. We loved him and we spoiled him in our own way regardless. He had a very good year for his last year for the most part. He was spirited till the end because he at least didn't die starving to death. No monetary value can be estimated here either.

Preacher- He came angry with lots of anxiety issues. I loved Preacher, he was allowed to be boss of the herd and lead them back and forth from the pasture, he learned he could be a boss without being a bully and he lost a lot of his food aggression.

It wasn't a big save but it made me happy to see him happy.

Mare Girl - People thought I was crazy for taking her, she was 25 and a standerbred who had not been with other horses in 10 years. A retired racehorse who's owner was elderly and she was being kicked out of her farm by her step children. Everyone thought it would turnout to be an abandoned horse and I'd be stuck (I thought it might happen too).

Mare's teeth were terrible, they got fixed, she almost went over the handicap ramp and gait at the barn when she saw other horses at a distance. She got a blockage with her colic once and that was a 3 day ordeal.

The owner always paid on time, she sent more when I had to buy the more expensive senior feed. She provided a years worth of hay for mare too.

The best thing though was Mare trotting at full speed to the big pasture ahead of all the other horses. Her tail would be up and she was ready to go, everyone brushed her, gave her treats, and made her feel special.

Her horse boyfriends started with Echo then Preacher, Will and then Cody at the end. She was part of a herd, she was a horse, she was just the best.

THERE IS NO MONETARY VALUE THAT CAN BE PLACED ON THIS ONE

Moving her, although I took her with me and was there for her was hard on her. I know internally something was there that gave way but deep down I wondered if we had been able to stay if she would been alive a little longer, at least she would have had more peace because she loved our old farm.

William - A very angry horse that cribbed and coliced easy. Will was hard to understand, it took awhile to become his friend. We saved him once from bad colic and we tried to make sure he couldn't crib in different ways and I had to have words with his owner more than once about putting a collar on him.

He and Mare had a wonderful bond before we left the farm, he protected her and was gentle to her. Will was a good horse, I regret not being about to spend more time with him trying to solve the anger issue but we got some improvement.

Will went to another farm close by that didn't buy hay out of state and supplemented with other things until the owner moved him again. Will died of colic. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt he'd still be alive if we had been able to keep the farm.

This was a loss, from an emotional standpoint and I'd gladly have given my last dollar if that horse were still alive today.

Buddy - When I met him at another barn he was about starved to death, it was that simple. He wasn't with us long but I helped the owner before he came to our farm get the vet care and tests he needed and completely revamp his feed and feeding.

Happy that he got back on his feet and the owner was able to fully enjoy him and riding.

Again, wouldn't trade money for this happy ending.

Polo - One of those horses that I had a special bond with. Turns out he was slowly foundering, he was depressed, wouldn't always eat and was terribly lonely.

Bringing Polo into a barn with other horses was a big solution. The founder became a very big issue, tests were run and food was changed, his feet trimming changed to some degree which was part of the initial problem.

One of the greatest memories I have of Polo is him running out to the big pasture to join my personal horses, they loved him from day one. They never treated him like an outsider, they would check him out and they would all drop their heads in peaceful grazing.

Polo never liked to roll on the ground much till he came to our barn. My horses will drop and roll several times a day, the day I looked through the big barn door and saw four black legs in the air with hooves waving around was a wonderful day. Polo liked to roll almost every time he went out.

Polo eventually passed with founder after he left our farm. I miss him to this day, I just loved him so much.

Till I die, I'll never forget the picture of Polo out in the big pasture with other horses. I'd pay to see it again!

Gee, a quick rundown of dogs

Will - was going to be destroyed, we helped him till he got a home

Ben - a dying st. bernard - rescued just in time, I went and coaxed him to come with his he was aggressive, if we hadn't taken him them and let him stay over night at our place so the rescue could come get him he might not have survived.

Cruiser - in a situation where he without a doubt would have been killed either by a german sheppard in the house or a car since the husband didn't want him and sort of set it up that way. He was with us for awhile but he got the best family ever.

Chewy - found on the streets by a friend who just left him at the farm, he was with us for awhile till the rescue found him a great home.

Sheba- A great dog who had lost her home, she stayed with us for so long till the rescue found her a family, I might say a wonderful family. Sheba didn't do well with the first family that showed interest so I interview the second one, and I took her to their house. It was a meant to be home as if she had always been there.

Monk - I just happened to be involved with a rescue with Will and Monk came up in an email which I forwarded to someone that I thought might take interest. Monk hit the jackpot, he got the home and medical attention he so desperately needed.

2 dogs we took care of for months for a homeless couple - we got financially burned on this one but I didn't turn them away.

Okay, there are more but these are the ones I think stand out in my mind.

One dogs life alone is priceless to me so enough said.

Of course as soon as the issue with the old property is finally put to rest another issue must raise it's ugly head.

My ex I think lost a really good paying job, he disappeared out of my daughter's life in August again. So, she looses her home/farm, mare girl dies, and her father deserts her again. Perfect cocktail for depression which has been battling and is just now getting over it.

We have had to pay board for Aubrey which is a horse her father just left at our farm without helping with any cost. He stopped paying child support until a month ago and now that he has started again the phone calls start that are angry and that he demands to pick up Kylie after 9 months of ignoring her text and calls.

And so it goes... except all these years I've tried to keep peace and never tried for more money because again, Kylie's happiness is worth more than money.

I think it's best to resolve all the trials of the past few years and start with a clean slate. This is an old battle that needs to be resolved for good. More attorney fees to be sure but what that will buy is maybe, finally, security and peace of mind instead of fear.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Rain... well almost

Beautiful day today, I had to go to the doctor in Fairlawn and they had a sprinkle there but we didn't get any. Maybe tomorrow, I have to spray all the weeds growing up in the rock garden's etc. after tomorrow I will eliminate them (evil laugh).

It was weird driving down 18 through that end of Medina and Fairlawn, we lived near there form many years but it didn't seem right being there again. It's so much prettier out here and so much like home.

I don't miss any of it which I thought I would. I miss having my horses at home of course but I'd never want to live in that community again. to superficial and well just not pretty. Here, everyone has beautiful yards but they are out working and puttering around, there's a hay field behind us and acres of farm land all around. It's just a cool place to live. Besides, I like eating at the Hungry Bear diner and all the culture that go's with it.


Monday, May 6, 2013

Mowing, fat ponies, and good neighbors

Mowing every day somewhere on the property to keep up with the grass and moving the pony fence to keep them eating. For the first time ever little bit is getting fat which is a no no. They will have to be locked up at night to keep them from getting too fat. I hate to see mini's and ponies overweight, you run the risk of founder.

The neighbors tilled the garden for us while we were gone yesterday. It was a nice thing to do because I haven't had time to rent a tiller yet. The soil is looking good with all the fertilizer we spread over it from cleaning the little ones shed.

The little things I've planted around are sprouting and we already have lots of flowers from what was planted before. It was a little cooler today and while I was at lunch I mowed some and played around outside. As nice as the house is the biggest part of my time when not working is outside somewhere. Everyone here is like that, they are out mowing or playing or burning fire's at night. None of the houses are the type where you know people live there but you never see them.

Nana was on the back patio today and she wanted to come in the house so I opened the  sunroom door and she climbed the steps, walked through the door across the floor into the dining room and onto her cage by herself. She was very proud of her accomplishment and said "I love you".

She is such a character, she is so animated and sings songs and talks in a voice that sounds like a child. She now stretches her wings when she goes outside and even goes a few feet around to just look at things and then runs back to Kylie or myself.

The dogs had a really good romp outside and Kylie helped the neighbors move some stuff around on their porch this afternoon. I wish the spring could last forever, it's funny I hated the rain but now the ground is getting as hard as a rock, I keep thinking it has to rain some, it was such a bad hay year last year and too much rain or not enough equates to the same thing, a hay shortage. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Beautiful dirt

I am really dirty right now, working outside here and then going to the barn. I mowed, I hoed, I cooked early today. I baked fish and vegetables and made a great smoothie, and cleaned the kitchen. I got more things out of the garage that are still packed but I let the rest of the housework go.

We decided to go to the barn around 6 and spend the evening there and it was so worth it. Yes, I have barn and arena dirt all over me and it's the best. The barn where we are at is not fancy, it's laid back and there isn't any drama or snotty people or neurotic people either. It's small, functional and it has dirt, like a real barn should.

The folks that own it put the horses out on pasture, they mow the pasture once before doing so and they are practical and sensible about chores and horse care. I go in and the stalls aren't stuffed with sawdust they have what they need and are cleaned everyday, the buckets are emptied routinely but not fanatically, the horses are fed as they should be and they give them good quality hay.

No one is looking for something to pick apart, everyone does a little of this or that to help out but everyone looks out for each other. The arena is good, there's dust, and there's poop in it but no one is calling 911 about it. It's sufficient for a good ride and everyone knows the owners will work on it soon for the summer. Life goes on.

After riding we ate with them because they were grilling, they had just got done cleaning the cow barn and were done with the chores for the evening. Kylie rode a four wheeler, they have 4 of them and she went with their daughter way out in the fields.

Aubrey and Kylie had a good ride earlier and I rode Cody and Kylie rode him bareback after that. His back is filling out again and I have been studying saddles that are better for his short back. I tried a barrel racing saddle that is about 23 pounds and perfect for his back, it also sits further back on his withers giving him a fuller range of motion. Cody's chest is turning from flab to muscle also, Aubrey is got a round barrel to him and though his legs are long his body is nice and full and round.

I guess the real blessing here is the horses are living as they should, their environment is what pleases them, they are safe and are given the things they need to enjoy a good life. They  get out regularly, their stalls are safe and quiet, they aren't turned out in a big herd where they could get hurt, the family lives there, knows each horse as an individual and if anythings off they know it. It's the closest thing to having them at home except there's a nice family, and others who love just being around horses and it gives Kylie the opportunity to ride with other kids and I get to hang out with folks too.

No competition in trying to impress people with the latest training method, or equipment, just get on the horse and ride and have fun. No politics or people who pull practically in the doorway of the barn instead of the parking lot because it might be too far of a walk but they are "horse people" so they are the real outdoor type, (sarcasm).

When you've lived on a farm and you've had to walk, and get dirty and suffer all kinds of weather, done back braking work and had to make sure you have all the the things you need to run a farm well then having horses is really your lifestyle, it's not recreation or a pretend to be into horses to impress people, it's a reality every moment.

Boarders sometimes think because they pay rent that they own the place, just like renters of homes they can really take a lot for granted. When they are in their beds at night or out shopping, their horse is home with you. You see their horses more than they do, their horses depend on you for everything to survive. I can tell you I don't walk in and act like an a--hole, I don't own their barn and I don't have the right to demand more than what is agreed upon.

I treat the owners as knowledgeable people, I know they can't bend over backwards for every person and their obligation to me is the basics in our contract. Like me though, they feed more hay than in the agreement, the let my horses out more than is in the agreement and I don't ever take that for granted or complain about stupid stuff. Why? because I don't want entitlement, I want to be fair to them and I want to be treated fairly. It's not about what I can bully them into or that they don't have a life outside of my horse. I also know that my horse is not going to die if the stall isn't cleaned the first thing in the day or that he has a little hay in his bucket or that he doesn't have a ton of sawdust.

I do know that if he doesn't have enough quality hay and doesn't get out to pasture that he will not be healthy or happy. I also know that if barn owners are mean to the horses behind my back that he is going to suffer. But it is their home, where their family lives and I respect them and their farm. I would expect anyone entering my home to do the same, when someone comes in the barn and starts taking sawdust and hay or grain without asking it's like someone just walking into your house and going through your cupboards. The horses get what is paid for by the barn owner, outside of that, without asking it's just plain stealing. It's a matter of honor that people respect other people even if they are the barn owners.

Boarders also want more feed and better feed but they don't want to pay for it. A decent maintenance feed is about $10 a bag, senior is in the $20's and so on. I buy my own feed and my board is discounted. This is fair to me and to the barn owners. My horses get very high quality food, better than maintenance which is all a stable is legally obligated to feed and no more and there's a limit for the amount feed to be fair to them and their costs out of pocket. I don't try and steal from them by trying to insist my horses should get more grain and that they should buy a more expensive grain and give it to my horses without paying for the additional cost. It's not honest to do that to people who are trying to run a horse stable or fair.

I don't want to cheat people, I buy my own grain, and I decide how much they should feed my horses and there is no dishonesty. I pay for a stall, turnout, the use of the arena and hay, and their labor and watchful eyes. The board is very reasonable, their cost out of pocket is appropriate for the board and I am happy to provide the additional grain as they are my horses and well horses aren't cheap and I am not a cheat or a thief.

One last thing, I don't take their hay and I don't take their sawdust. I ask if for some reason I need some. A monthly board payment does not give me a license to steal, common courtesy and respect is owed to someone who if I am not there holds my horses lives in their hands.

There's dirt at our barn, it is good dirt, it's a place where there's life and peace and happiness. The animals aren't exploited, they are living a good life and they are loved. I love beautiful barn dirt and the smell of horses and fresh cut hay and especially when it doesn't come with another brand of B.S. 

How blessed I feel right now

This week has been beautiful and sunny, the world has come alive with beauty and all of God's creatures playing out like a symphony of color and sound. We have so many beautiful birds everywhere, bunnies, and the miles of green grass and fields all around us.

The little Killdeer now has a total of 8 eggs, we put caution cones around her nest since it is on the edge of the driveway, a delivery truck or large vehicle might unknowingly run over the nest so we marked it off and she and her eggs are safe. I will have to take a picture of the little mother sitting in the middle of the cones on her nest. I am anxious to see what hatches, she has four of her own eggs and four foster eggs.

The ducks next door are here, there and everywhere eating bugs and sleeping on the cool grass under the trees. They are a little troop that enjoy life every moment, moving around and just being. The chickens the other neighbor has are big and free range so you see them all over their property.

Our ponies are getting moved as they eat the grass, Bit got shaved and Pony got a good brushing. They eat and sometimes lay down right in the middle of the grass in the sun when it's not too hot. Sometimes the ducks pay them a visit and everyone just hangs out.

The dogs are really happy here and Nana is too, she is starting to walk around outside and look around. It's much better than being in her cage all the time. When she gets tired she goes to the back door and we know she wants in the house. We are out there with her all the time making sure a hawk doesn't see her etc.

Yes, we've been blessed hand over foot as my mother used to say. It's peaceful, I have never in my life had peace and as much security. I never realized how hard the years have been until now. Most of my life was devoted to just surviving, a struggle constantly with some pretty big mountains to climb. Even growing up it was as far as peaceful as anyone could get. I thank God for His mercy and kindness today, He hasn't forgotten me or forsaken me and He leaves me always to wonder at His goodness towards me for why he chooses to be so I have no answer except He is pure love and like the world around me here, He pours out all that is needed for new life and the days and nights rejoice for His pleasure. 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

A very busy week

The lawn mower is still chugging some so I got a fuel additive I am going to use tomorrow. Monday was a crappy day, Tuesday was a good day as Kylie got some help from the neighbor to set up the drill to make chain mail for one of her character costumes. Yesterday Kylie went to counseling and today I had to go to town to mail some important papers which I had notarized yesterday. We went and visited the horses this evening but didn't stay long, the weekend is almost here and we will spend more time with them.

I work during the day just like a regular job so I have to do my other stuff when I am not working. At lunch though I can mow some lawn or do some chores around the house. We helped the neighbor move some outdoor furniture this afternoon while I was taking a break.

We have to move the little temporary pen I made for the ponies because they finished the grass in the first section, I will be moving them all over for fresh grass till I get a fence built and they can have the run of the place.

We have lots of dandelions all over which is fine out here because people cut their grass but don't treat it but the garden beds have plenty of weeds so they will have to be removed. The mother bird now has 7 eggs and we put cones around her nest to keep it safe from any cars or delivery trucks that come down the driveway, no one would suspect there was a nest as the eggs blend in so well.

We saw the first June bug tonight, they are at the top of my list for bugs that give me the creeps, I am not a squeamish person but I draw the line with June bugs. I hope to have a bonfire this weekend, everyone has a fire outside at night here, I have plenty to burn and that will get rid of paper and boxes that are laying around here.

This weekend will be sheering of the critters, Dusti is done, next comes Daniel who is really hot with his heavy coat, pony and then bit. Everyone is shedding so bad it's just terrible, the carpet will stay cleaner without all the dog fur bunnies floating around.

Nana went outside and discovered she can walk on the gravel in the flower beds and on the patio. Her feet get caught in the grass and she can't get anywhere until she got on the rocks, she can't fly but she can hall just walking pigeon toed around. She walked straight up to the steps and looked like hey I am ready to go in now. She did like the sunshine and the grass and looking around as long as we stay close by.

There is so much to get done, the house inside needs straightened, the lawn is growing up, the weeds, the animals... I have to say I am happy though, I love to be outside and all the rest is just part of life. It's peaceful here, I think for the first time in my life I feel like I am where I belong, the community feels like home. It's a good thing.