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Until one has loved an animal, part of their soul remains unawakened.

Ride with your heart and soul ~ your horse can feel it


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Small world, Fate, Coincidence

It is indeed a small world, and fate/coincidence have been in play lately...

Take for instance Carlos! the newest addition to our herd.
I was killing team before our team penning AGM and happened to see an ad on a bulletin board advertising a free donkey to an approved home.  Turns out Carlos had been rescued by the couple (LJK) we bought our acreage from and they had him far enough along to rehome him (Nell & I decided to make his name officially Carlos! with the exclamation point cuz that's how we roll lol)

Nell went with me to pick up Carlos! and while we were chatting it turned out the lady (LK) was looking for some laying hens but wasn't having any luck finding any.  Well *I* just happened to have gotten some new hens but I had a few more than I wanted, so we made a deal and she was going to come buy the rest of them!  Perfect timing too because I wanted to move the older hens out of the redneck coop so that I could move the youngsters into the redneck coop.
It sure was neat visiting with LJK when they came to pick up the hens.  We walked around and showed them the changes we had made, got some more history and info about things from when this was their place and had a good visit.

Then Saturday night L'il Bit had her kittens!  (sometime between 2:15pm when I went to work and 12:30am when I got home)  By Monday all her babies have homes waiting for them... less than two days old and without even trying to find homes!  Although Pie is trying to convince me to keep one instead of giving it away lol

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Peaceful transitions

My laying flock numbers had gotten down to 7 "regular" hens (2 ISAs, 2 Amers, 3 Amer crosses) and 2 bantam hens, plus my 2 roosters (1 Amer, 1 Wyandotte)
I was in need of more hens and managed to get some young stock (5 Buff Orpington, 5 Amer cross, and 2 Cream Legbars) and 10 "barnyard mix" mature hens. 
Thanks to Stephanie's article about introducing new hens I was able to add the four mature hens I'm keeping into the flock with no muss no fuss (I'm selling 6, I had to take them all and I only wanted 4 or 5)
Last night before everyone tucked themselves into bed I caught the four hens I wanted and put them in a large dog crate.  Then around midnight I took them and put them on roosts in the coop with the existing flock. 
Today when I went out to do chores they were happily mingling with the flock, eating, drinking, sunbathing, resting in the shade and dustbathing.  It's like when everyone woke up today they looked at each other and said "oh hey, I guess you've been here all along" lol
Here are the new ladies...


I couldn't get a decent pic of this little black hen, this is the best one and she's with the two roosters...
I'll admit, this pretty girl is my favourite ;)
And speaking of peaceful, Carlos! is now in the same pen as George and Rootbeer.  Other than an occasional reminder to toe the line from Rootbeer things are quite peaceful there too :)

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Lists

I'm a list person.  Every week I make a To Do list.  I'll be totally honest and admit that sucker has certain things that don't NEED to be on a list, stuff that will get done regardless (like changing the sheets on the bed).  However having stuff crossed off is a motivator to keep going so that's my little cheat/trick to staying on track ;) 

I've also got a project list called The Big List which has stuff that either will take a bit more time/money/effort to put it on a list with a deadline.  Things like painting the trim on the garage (hmm, that depends on when I have the time and what the weather is like), adding boards to the top of the arena fence to make it more visible (time to do it & money for boards are the factors at play), and well you get the idea.

Something I haven't done before is make an official bucket list.  Now I'm not sure if it's because I'm approaching a "milestone birthday" or what but I've been playing with putting one together... stay tuned!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Friday Funny ~ Lessons From My Horse

All I Need to Know in Life I Learned From My Horse
1. When in doubt, run far, far away.
2. You can never have too many treats.
3. Passing gas in public is nothing to be ashamed of.
4. New shoes are an absolute necessity every 6 weeks.
5. Ignore cues. They're just a prompt to do more work.
6. Everyone loves a good, wet, slobbery kiss.
7. Never run when you can jog. Never jog when you can walk. And never walk when you can stand still.
8. Heaven is eating for at least 10 hours a day... and then sleeping the rest.
10. Eat plenty of roughage.
11. Great legs and a nice rear will get you anywhere. Big, brown eyes help too.
12. When you want your way, stomp hard on the nearest foot.
13. In times of crisis, take a poop.
14. Act dumb when faced with a task you don't want to do.
15. Follow the herd. That way, you can't be singled out to take the blame.
16. A swift kick in the butt will get anyone's attention.
17. Love those who love you back, especially if they have something good to eat.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Things to work on

I rode Lefta for the first time in a.g.e.s. Monday night and I realized I have a few things to work on.
First of all I need to ride her more so that we can get to know each other, and secondly we need to build some trust in each other. 
For some reason I'm just not comfortable on her.  Part of it is that Lefta is a bit green,  but also she just doesn't feel "right" to me.  The best analogy I can give is that being on her feels like being on a unicycle whereas on the boys it feels like I'm on a bike, when I'm on her I don't feel like I have much horse in front of or behind me.
Now don't get me wrong, she's got some power and I'm sure that when she's in shape and I'm comfortable enough to ride her like I ride the boys that she'll do fairly well barrel racing.

This was my first ride on her since late last summer, early last fall.  And it was her second ride this year (Nell rode her a few weeks ago)  We warmed up then trotted the barrel pattern and she was pretty great, you`d swear we had just done our last barrel work the other day not last year. 
The only thing that really showed up was that she was a bit grumpy going left.  She'd get her nose up and toss her head a bit.  The more we worked on it the stiffer and crankier she got.  So we came off the barrels completely and worked on trotting and loping circles.  She relaxed about going left at a trot but when we kicked up to a lope that bit of attitude came back.  We worked on transitions up and down and got her relaxed and then worked on a few circles.
(I told her she just needed two NICE circles loping to the left and we could stop)
Lo and behold she dropped her head, took a deep breath and gave me 1 and 3/4 nice circles.  I told her we were doing one more and if she didn't shoulder in we'd stop... perfect circle lol

She doesn't seem sore and I don't think her teeth need done, I really think it was just a bit of attitude coming out.  I DO know that both she and Applejack (Nell came over and was riding him) were a bit cranky at having to work in the arena because it was more work... the ground is a bit deep.  Not "it's going to make my horse sore" deep, just deep enough to make it more work than traveling over the grass lol