Archive of ‘Farm Friday’ category
Ah, spring! I really do love the changing of seasons. Well, except summer. Since moving to Texas I do not like summer. The past couple weeks we have had idyllic spring weather. Not too warm and not too cold. The trees and plants look to be mostly recovered from snowpocalypse in February. Only the Crape Myrtles still have us wondering. We have one VERY large one and will be incredibly sad if it didn’t survive.
I don’t think I’ve ever introduced Lilybet on the blog. She hails from North Hills Hunt in Nebraska. Her mum is a Welsh Foxhound so has a wiry coat and her dad is a Deerhound mix. Lilybet is about 50lb and much taller than a foxhound, but lean like the Deerhound. She is nearly 2 years old now and is starting to fill out and look like she’s done growing. She adores romping around in the grass with her dog friends and occasionally getting into trouble chasing goats.
I got some new bedding to use in my LQ trailer. It is called Beddy’s and I learned about it from my blog friend Hillary. I’ll do a separate post later all about it and if I like it, but it arrived in the mail last night. Linda approves, at least so far.
Linda trying out the new bedding for the LQ.
We have 6 total cats and 5 are barn cats. This is Black Caviar (all cats except 2 are named after racehorses). We have lost SO many of our barn cats to coyotes and hawks and owls so I make most of them stay in the barn rooms at night. When they get out in the morning they run and find places to hide from the dogs. The hay wheelbarrow is often a favourite spot for hiding.
Black Caviar safe in the hay wheelbarrow
Gene has grown a LOT since he arrived late last August, but when I look at pics like this I’m reminded how small he is compared to my horses. He turns a year old in May and I’ll do a string test (explanation will be forthcoming on that) to estimate how tall he will be at adulthood. His co-owner is hoping for right at 14.2h because that is the size of a large pony for horse shows. I selfishly want him to be more like 15h because then he’s a better size for adults to ride. Regardless, he’s well loved and is an adorable pony!
Coco on the left and Gene on the right after breakfast
I hope everyone has a lovely weekend and gets to be outside in lovely spring weather!
I am SO excited it’s September! AND it has rained about 4.5″ here this week! I think we were officially in a drought, so the rain is AMAZING. I can’t wait to see how good the grass looks in about a week. There is more rain in the forecast, but I don’t think we will have Flash Flood Warnings again next week!
While we were preparing the stall for the arrival of the Chincoteague Ponies this week Caviar decided it would be a fun time to climb the stall barrier and hang out on the stall walls. She was up there for a few hours and took a nap even! Cats are so silly.
Kitty exploring on stall walls. Like the high beam for cats?!
There was much cleaning to be done to prepare for Gene’s co-owner to come stay for the weekend in anticipation of his arrival. Red Rock Linda wasn’t much help with the vacuuming and mopping.
That is one VERY sleepy hound!
We had SO much fun with Gene for a couple days! Gene’s co-owner’s kids spent lots of time in the stall with the foals feeding them by hand. Chincoteague foal owners recommend spending lots of time in their stalls feeding and hanging out with them to get them accustomed to being around people. And, of course, there is a special bond between the foals and children.
Gene being sweet!
After all the rain this week it was fun to see a rainbow!
A beautiful morning rainbow on the farm.
We still get fair amount of erosion after heavy rains so I like to check the fencing in the back pasture to be sure that the dirt hasn’t pushed down or through any of the fencing. The dogs always like to come along to help test the perimeter (LILYBET!).
Dickens helping to check fencing while Chivas looks for snacks.
We are very much looking forward to the long weekend. Lots of pony and horse time will be had as well as some farm projects. Have a GREAT weekend!
I am SO excited it is the final Friday in August! SO EXCITED! This August hasn’t been terrible, but I just don’t love the heat. And this weekend is going to be HOT! Temps forecasted to be over 100F. Gross.
We were fortunate to get a little bit of rain from the remnants of Hurricane Laura. She certainly was a b$tch, but at least she wasn’t as horrible as she could have been. I was reading possible comparisons to Katrina! Yikes!
I love it when it rains, but it’s still sunny! This storm was prefaced by possibly the most beautiful rainbow I’ve ever seen! The colours were SO vivid!
One of the bad things about storms is that the hounds get really scared. Usually we have to let them into our walk-in closet and they hide under the hanging clothes. The closet door was closed and Linda had to make herself comfortable in a pile of dog beds.
This is her “Princess and the Pea” impersonation.So. Many. Dog. Beds.
Gene begins his journey south and west very soon! His caretakers have been working hard to get him socialised and he leads a little bit. He’s also had a HUGE growth spurt since he left the island! We are SO excited to have him in Texas! Hopefully the heat subsides before he arrives.
Gene modelling his nice conformation. He’s pretty “basic” chestnut, but I really do love his color.
And last, but CERTAINLY not least we acquired another chicken. Our chicken coop is in our “old barn” that needs to be torn down before it falls down, so we haven’t gotten any chicks in a couple years so are down to 8 chickens. We will start anew with all new chickens in a new coop so are kind of just waiting these ones out. When I drove to work on Monday I noticed a feather-footed chicken by the road near our house and convinced Boot City to go catch it. Well, chickens are hard to catch (see Rambo). I saw the chicken again today on my way to work and we agreed that if she was still there at the end of the day we would try to catch her. Lo and behold there she was. I mean, who doesn’t go catching chickens in their work clothes on a Thursday evening?! It took about 20 minutes, but we got her!
We are going to call her Melania; she is so pretty, but doesn’t do much other than be pretty. Feather footed chickens aren’t good for meat and they don’t lay many eggs. LOL!
Have a GREAT weekend and if you live somewhere there is real fall, know that I’m crazy jealous because this is my FAVORITE time of year in Montana!!
After complaining last week about the scorching heat I’m pleased to say that things have taken quite a turn for the better! We got 1.25″ of rain on Sunday night and it’s remained in the low 90’s for highs all week! The humidity is also low so it almost feels like a Montana summer, but with a lot more dead grass and way more people around.
Regardless of the weather, Ouiser prefers to be inside. We let her wander around outside every once in a while, but she tends to make poor decisions and get stuck in trees or overstimulate the dogs, so that is a privilege she doesn’t get often.
I call this her “Olan Mills” pose. Google Olan Mills and you’ll see what I mean. It’s a cheesy pose with a silly accessory. Boot City loves that she covers his bag with cat hair. LOL!
I’m generally an early riser and Simon doesn’t do great in the heat, so all of my riding lessons this summer have been at 7:30a. Lately this has made for departures in the dark of the morning and the ability to catch a pretty colourful sunrise!
All hooked up and ready to go. This was a super hot Saturday with temps well into the triple digits. I’m hopeful we may be done with those for 2020.
Just because she’s pretty and very photogenic.
She spends quite a lot of time looking towards the back of the property from her stall run. I guess she will warn us if there are ever invaders from the back.
On lesson days I take along my Ice Horse tendon wraps to ice whomever gets to lesson that day’s legs. Sunday has started spending his morning asleep on the boots left in the boot basket. Most of them are Back On Track so I guess he likes the stimulation.
Sunday napping in the boot basket.
Last, but certainly not least, is a Gene update! He’s been wearing his halter for about a week and we learned today that he’s growing like a weed and will need a bigger halter soon! He’s reported to be pretty quiet and it sounds like he should be fairly easy to train, but only time will tell. His caretaker is going to start working with him on leading this week since he will embark on his trip south by the end of the month!
Gene outside. He reminds me a lot of Jaguar as a foal. I’m so excited to see him in person and see if the likeness remains. Jaguar was the easiest horse to train so it would be delightful if Gene is, too!
Have a delightful weekend! Wear your mask. Practice social distance. Wash your hands. And do something fun outside!
Does anyone else feel like we really dodged a bullet by today NOT being Friday the 13th?! The next Friday the 13th will be in November, but hopefully 2020 will be done torturing us by then. This week has been H.O.T. in Texas. Like I feel like I’m living in someone’s armpit after running a marathon hot. The forecasted high tomorrow is 107, but thankfully next week looks MUCH cooler.
The black kittens are smart kitties and they prefer to stay in their air conditioned cat/feed room rather than hanging out in the heat. Their cat gym isn’t the sturdiest thing ever made, but Black Caviar is brave enough to nap on the top floor of the thing.
Black Caviar and her brudder Sunday Silence keeping cool in the AC.
Don’t tell the other dogs I said this, but Quila really is the BEST girl! She keeps as close to me as possible and is a bit protective yet snuggly. Her only misbehaviour is that she likes to open the freezer and help herself to frozen meat and ice cream. She went out on a pasture inspection mission this week to help try to find the hole where Dickens and Lilybet snuck out and didn’t return home until 3a the next morning. BAD DOGS!
Quila AKA the BEST girl.
Boot City sent me this photo the other day. This is Annie nonchalantly resting next to the wheelbarrow while the chickens root through it and kick urine soaked shavings and manure ALL over her. SO gross. But, truth be told, Annie likes to roll in the dirty bedding when it gets dumped. It is extra disgusting because I let it sit in the wheelbarrow for a day or two and fill it with water so it’s an extra disgusting poop soup. Why are dogs so gross?!
Annie and her hen friends.
Last, but not least, is a lovely sunset from the top of the driveway. I have a love/hate relationship with this paved driveway. I love that the road isn’t as rough for the horses to ride up and down in the trailer, but I miss watching people freak out and park at the end of the road and walk up and get to the top to drop off their cars for Boot City to work on. It really was the best judge of character to see if people could or would at least try to drive up.
Hot August Texas night.
Y’all have a great weekend and stay cool!
We are a full week into August; AKA my least favourite month in Texas. This is always the month when I question my sanity in moving here. Which is a bit ironic considering the only times I visited prior to moving to Fort Worth were in August. I shouldn’t complain too much since June and July were actually fairly nice as far as weather goes. I (always) wish we had gotten more rain, but the temperatures were not awful.
I’m fairly certain I’ve gone on more trail rides since March than I have gone on in one year ever in my life previously and I’m not mad about it! It’s been really good for my horses to get out and about. Simon even finally let me open and close a gate while mounted! He’s nearly perfect most days, but for some reason has remained apprehensive and even a bit fearful about opening and closing gates. I went trail riding on a family’s place outside of Waco a couple weeks ago and we finally conquered the task!
Here we are after completing our mission. Simon is still a bit unsure about the gate possibly attacking him. I’m proud as can be and Quila is in a constant state of supervision. Photo credit to our trail riding buddy and Chincoteague Pony co-owner.
Today’s post is very cat and Simon centric. Sunday Silence showed up at the barn this past weekend with a fat cheek! He had a fat cheek a few weeks previously. I presume he’s getting in fights with his cat friends. We had a cat with a somewhat similar fat cheek a few years ago and it was some disgusting larvae parasite thing, so I was REAL glad when the swelling had gone down the next day. Yes, my cats are named after racehorses.
Sunday with his fat cheek. He’s a sweet kitty who was rescued by a friend from the Weatherford Shelter this past spring.
And here we have MORE SIMON! Last weekend we went trail riding with a bunch of our OTTB friends. I dearly love trail riding with this group. Our horses all get along. They keep a similar pace. We can change spots in order 10 times and none of the horses get upset. We got a tiny bit lost and ended up off the trail for a bit, but we found our way and had a delightful ride.
Simon nearly ALWAYS has his ears forward during trail rides. He’s so cute.
And, last but not least, is my Work From Home Administrative Assistant. She doesn’t work very hard and she sheds quite a bit, but she’s sure cute! I may have to write her up for spending so much time napping in sunny places, though.
Pardon my dusty trim and nose prints on the window. She slept like that for at least 6 hours!
I foresee more trail riding this weekend. It’s going to be stupid hot, though, so we won’t be out too long. Hopefully we will have some updates on Gene this weekend. He’s eating well and becoming friendly so that is good news! Happy weekend, y’all!
We are OFFICIALLY more than half way done with 2020! Has there EVER been a year that more people have been excited to see come to an end?! Coronapocolypse hasn’t been awful to my close knit family and friends, at least not yet, but I’m excited for the year to be over because of the elections.
Things on the farm are at the very least a lot more REAL than the crap going on in the news and on social media, so enjoy some silly shenanigans and updates.
Ousier is a repo kitty and she LOVES her house life. She’s the easiest and sweetest kitty ever. We love her. We also really love our induction cooktop. If you are choosing a cooktop, I think induction is the best. Gas is complicated, albeit fancy, and electric is just awful. Do yourself a favour and get induction; it’s easy to clean and your water boils nearly instantly.
Ouiser can find herself the softest and weirdest spots possible to sleep. In this case, barn towels.
I worked from home one day this week. It was fabulous. Until I went to the barn to check on the horses:
Pablo peering out of COCO’S stall. Notice the feed bags and hay all over the floor.
This one is my personal favourite:
Yes, he has an ENTIRE BALE OF HAY in his stall. He can barely chew, so it’s not like he’s really enjoying this. #itsgoodtobe27
Then later in the week our lovely neighbour (one is lovely and one is AWFUL) invited the horses to come eat the grass. It was so lovely and idyllic for like 79 minutes.
Mostly they ran around a lot and eventually started grazing.
However, about an hour into their rendezvous next door, they discovered the deer feeder (Jaguar) and had to come back to their regular pasture to hopefully avoid colicking. BAD HORSES!
I hope your dependents behave better than mine and that it isn’t a bajillion degrees hot where you live so you can actually enjoy the weekend outside!
The weeks seem to go by a bit slower during Coronapocolypse. Mostly because there isn’t a whole lot going on during the weekends like there might be when we aren’t social distancing and most social activities aren’t canceled. Plus, it’s hot in Texas right now. It’s (thankfully) cooled off a bit the latter part of this week, but temps are still in the high 90’s, which inherently makes one want to take things more slowly. I have some fun horsey things this weekend, so I’m looking forward to horsing around with friends a bit.
Despite the heat, I’ve been getting some rides in after work. I got a super fantastic new bareback pad recently. I’ll blog about it soon, but for some reason summertime seems like a great time to ride bareback. Possibly because I can do it without wearing pants.
It appears that Simon and Samson have a bit of a bromance going on. It’s extra cute because Simon is the biggest horse we have and Samson is the smallest. Please ignore Simon’s lack of mane grooming. I promise I’ve been trimming it
What is it about cats in boxes that is SO entertaining?! I got a kick out of this one because the box is so very big and the cat can’t really get in it, but that did not stop her from trying.
Winx in a box.
I rode Coco for the first time in about 18 days after her vet visit cleared the weird welt as superficial. She was a very good girl and even walked and trotted through the sprinkler like a super star (she hates water and is usually pretty spooky). After our ride I groomed her and put some conditioner on her hooves since the ground is so dry in Texas. Who knew that one’s own shiny hooves could be so terrifying! She stood stock still until I undid the cross ties and then nearly jumped out of her feet, well, she would have jumped out of her feet if it were actually possible.
What, aren’t all horses afraid of their own feet when shiny from hoof conditioner?!
We have two neurotic and geriatric tiny dogs who both love a super fluffy blanket. One (the Italian Greyhound) is EXCEPTIONALLY neurotic and will scream at the top of her lungs if you pick her up wrong, not because it is painful but just because she’s crazy. Well, I succumbed to Facebook’s advertising algorithm and ordered two Soothing Beds that the internet told me would change my dogs’ lives. After watching the shipping status FROM CHINA for about 12 days the new beds arrived and let me tell you, those little dogs are OBSESSED with their Soothing Beds! Facebook Advertising Algorithm for the win!
Bunny LOVES her Soothing Bed! LOVES. IT.
And last, but certainly not least, the world always needs a Pablo update. This isn’t a particularly remarkable photo of Pablo, but he’s always cute and funny. He’s finally settling down and getting sweeter in his older age. We don’t really know how old he is, but we have had him for about 14 years.
Everyone loves the hairy ass. And the hairy ass jokes.
Y’all have a GREAT weekend! Wear your masks. Maintain social distance. Be kind to one another.
It’s FRIDAY!!!!! Friday’s don’t really mean as much as they did before coronapocolypse, but I still love them because they mean I have two nearly uninterrupted days of horsing ahead of me. Add to that the weather has been gloriously cool, albeit quite wet, this week and it looks like the cooler (for Texas) weather is going to stick around for a bit longer!
A few weeks ago I was in the barn doing chores and when I went to dump water buckets from one of the horse stalls I found one of my kittens staring at a little baby Blue Jay was on the ground. It was a big baby and had some feathers, but clearly wasn’t ready to fly yet. I quickly picked it up because me picking it up was going to end better than what the kittens would do with it if they had their way. Immediately I could hear the Blue Jay parents go CRAZY! They were swooping down from the trees and carrying on, like any good parent would do if a giant took their baby.
Super cute Blue Jay nearly-fledgling.
I put the baby bird in some grass hay in a box with a lid to keep it safe while I tried to figure out where it needed to go. There are quite a few trees around my barn so I had my work cut out for me to try to find the nest this little bird belonged to. The parents were still losing their minds so they weren’t a great deal of help to figure out where was home nest. After wandering about for nearly 30 minutes I was ready to give up when I FINALLY saw what looked like a nest at the very top part of the tree just outside the stall where I found the chick. Thankfully Boot City invested in a 14′ ladder so I wrangled the thing to the barn and set it up under the tree. This was my cardio AND strength training for the day. That ladder is no joke. Once set up, the bird parents resumed their maniacal freaking out and dive bombing, so I felt pretty good that I had found the right spot.
The top of the 14′ ladder. The nest was still a good 6-8′ higher. Never mind the car projects that live in perpetuity at our house.
I made sure the ladder was steady and got my baby bird and we climbed to the top of the ladder. The ladder was quite steady, thankfully, because when I got to the top I realised that I still couldn’t reach the nest so I had to climb into the actual tree ABOVE the ladder. Thankfully I don’t have too much of a fear of heights. As I was doing that, the bird parents started dive bombing my head and face. Yikes! I got just high enough that I could reach the nest at the top of my reach and gently drop the precious cargo back into it’s home. It never made a peep. I climbed back down and the parents relented on their attack. I never saw another sign of the bird family again. I hope all was well and they live happily ever after! Never a dull moment!
In other less dramatic news we have gone from having as many as 75 to 80 laying hens to now only having 6. All were lost from predators, old age or illness. Old hens are not very tasty, contrary to what people try to convince me. The remaining hens have two very nice gentlemen roosters to look out for them and they enjoy helping Coco eat her breakfast and laying eggs in her hay. It entertains me because Coco is quite aggressive about attacking dogs or cats in her stall, but she’s perfectly happy to have chicken guests!
A little for you, and a little for me.
When Boot City’s and my house was being renovated last year there was a long period of time when we didn’t have a dryer, so I got back into line drying our laundry. I really like line drying for many reasons. I love the smell of line dried clothes/sheets. I like that the sun naturally whitens things. I like that a lot of clothes that are line dried don’t need to be ironed like they do when they come out of the dryer. Texas summer heat dries things on the line almost as fast, and sometimes faster, than the dryer so the time commitment is actually better if you take into account the lack of ironing. However, there is the constant risk of laundry being furry.
He just stood there in the laundry for like 5 minutes. Like he enjoyed the fabric flapping around him. Like a weirdo.
And no Farm Friday post is complete without at least ONE dog photo. During the renovation we turned our breezeway into a dog/laundry/mud room and Linda (she’s a foxhound retired from Red Rock Hounds in Reno, Nevada) enjoys napping on her dog cot. She’s the sweetest old hound when she isn’t teaching the youngsters to dig under the fence to get to the neighbour’s to chase deer.
Red Rock Linda having a nice snooze.
I’m looking forward to lots of time in the saddle this weekend, some mane trimming and bridle path clipping and maybe even some house cleaning. What are you getting up to this weekend?