Thursday, October 19, 2017

Happiness is . . .

Tis the season where we make our bank account cry while we smile. When you are a farm owner happiness is siting a gravel truck turning into your driveway. Every year in the fall we get about 15 loads of gravel delivered. A few of those go on our mile long driveway each fall. As everyone knows, Jason is quite fastidious when it comes to driveway maintenance. Nothing wounds his pride more than when I point out the beginnings of a pothole in the driveway. The box blade comes out immediately and Jason gets to work.

We also replace gravel in our pastures around the gates and traffic areas. We rotate through the pastures and usually replace gravel in those areas every 2 to 3 years. A couple of pastures need the gravel refreshed more frequently since the traffic areas are in low spots.

When Jason wasn't busy spreading gravel he built five new hay feeders today. Since horses can destroy absolutely anything the hay feeders also have to get replaced periodically. We have a welder who comes and does maintenance work on them for us each spring, but even with that they still need replacement. I'd say the average lifespan of a hay feeder on our farm is five to six years.

In other news our dented truck is back from being repaired and looking good as new. Ewen the dog has spent the last four days at the vet clinic on IV fluids and about 19 different medications as he has fought off an unknown infection. His prognosis was poor at one point but now we are thinking he will get to come home tomorrow, of course still loaded up on medication. I haven't even asked for a guesstimate on his bill, I don't really want to know.

Between un-denting the truck, the gravel, the hay feeders, Ewen's vet bill and a few other things I'm forgetting, our checking account is probably feeling like it has a tentative hold on life. At least we had planned for the gravel and the hay feeders. The truck repair and Ewen's vet bill are to make sure we're aware that we are hemorrhaging money this month. As if we needed a reminder.

I have a love/hate relationship with this site. I love the gravel, I hate the bill.

Jason spreading gravel

new hay feeders put together and ready for use

I've happily had the opportunity to ride again lately, and this is my typical audience - horses with expressions ranging between shock and horror. The conversation goes something like this:  "That horse is being ridden. Guys, isn't this a retirement farm? I thought it was in the board contract that we could not be ridden? Has our contract been renegotiated without our consent? Could we find ourselves being ridden? L-R Digby, Happy, Paramount, Johnny and Mick

Nemo, Digby, Happy and Paramount  

Apollo and Cisco

Baby and Moe

Levendi and Homer

Walden and Fabrizzio

Sabrina and Bonnie

Convey and Chance

Merlin and Taylor playing

Rubrico, Sushi and Squirrel


Cuffie and Traveller

Dawn and Cinnamon

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Sunday Stills

Sam resting on Lighty

Cuffie waiting for breakfast

Lotus and George grooming

Calimba, MyLight and Dolly

Happy and Blu

B-Rad and Sebastian

George, Romeo and Cocomo

Toledo and Rubrico grazing in the fog

King and Thomas

Baner and Hesse

L-R Squirrel, Sushi and Johny napping. Walon and Rubrico standing

Wilson showing off his grooming efforts

Elfin, Rip and Grand

Duesy and Hesse

Renatta and Dawn

Thursday, October 12, 2017

(Not) Winning at Life

Jason and I have not been winning at life lately, and I am currently winning our race to the bottom. A few days ago we were stocking up at Costco. Several aisles of Christmas decorations were prominently on display. I'm with all of you saying we shouldn't have Christmas decorations yet, but regardless they were there and Carter wanted to look at them. Carter and I went to look at Christmas decorations while Jason and our cart went to a different part of the store. 

Carter and I studied all of the Christmas decorations and I seriously considered buying a lighted deer family for our front yard. I know it sounds tacky but in person I actually liked them. I decided to pass on the deer since they box would have no chance of fitting in our car. At that point Carter and I found Jason and our cart and we continued with our shopping. We were in the produce section getting ready to put a couple of packages of blueberries in our cart when Jason freaked out. 

Jason:  What the heck? What is this? What is going on?

Me:  completely clueless as I watched Jason have a meltdown in Costco

Jason:  This is not our stuff! This is not our stuff!

Me:  I looked at our cart and recognized nothing. "Jason, where did you get this cart?"

Jason:  I don't know. I thought I was pushing our cart around but I'm not. 

Me:  Where did you get distracted? Where is *our* cart?

Jason:  I have no idea, but this isn't our cart. 

Me:  Jason, we all see this is not our cart? Where do you think you started pushing the wrong cart?

Jason:  I have no idea.

After that exchange Jason left somebody else's cart out in one of the main aisles hoping they would see it. Then we went and got a new cart and started over. I felt very badly for the person who had turned their back to look at something then turned around to realize their cart was gone. 

Apparently I felt the need to outdo Jason's lack of situational awareness. I loaded my horse on the trailer and drove to a friend's farm to go trail riding. As I was turning into her driveway and felt the drop on the left and then heard the thud, I remembered she had told me to be careful of the steep drop off on one side. So of course that was the side of the driveway I was on. 

The gooseneck of my trailer briefly hit the left side of the truck on the bed. Our truck is now sporting a nice lowered area on the top left side of the bed. The truck is otherwise perfectly fine, but the cosmetic effect is quite ugly. Jason took the truck to the body shop today to get an estimate on repairing the bed. It will go in next week and come out with an undented bed for $1600.  I have been driving a truck and trailer since I was 16 and have never had an incident of my doing ever, until yesterday.

Sometimes you're the windshield, yesterday one part of the truck bed definitely looked like the bug. Oops. Hopefully one of us will manage to do something brilliant in the near future to make up for for our absent-minded professor moves of the last few days. 


Gus and Sushi running through the rain . . . 

. . . Gus, Sushi and Squirrel




We had some egrets visit us on Tuesday. We see some a few time a year. Silver is surrounded by our visitors.

Gibson being followed by the egrets; any time we've seen egrets they are always following Gibson around

a closer look at some of our visitors

Flyer and Gibson; if you look very closely you can see the egrets all perched on the fence behind them . . . 

. . . I zoomed in for a better picture

Johnny and Happy

Lighty and Miel

George and Asterik were very  happy they had something other than dirt to roll in

more of the grey horse club looking a little brown; Asterik, Silver and Gus


Cino and Fabrizzio grooming

Baby and Revy