Showing posts from August, 2010

In which we add another new family member to Haiku Farm

The long-awaited has happened at last:
Willy's sister Lisa has come from Korea to live with us on Haiku Farm.
She's 15 years old. She's very interested in the chickens (especially Minerva Louise #12), and she's a little intimidated by the goats and horses. She brought 10 pairs of shoes with her to America, and her favorite color is pink.
Jim and I (with Willy's help) put Lisa into what we call "puppy boot camp."
So what is Puppy Boot Camp?
I've never raised a kid before (Madeline and Jill and Aimee and Alaina and Courtney don't count--they had parents nearby), but I've raised a ton of dogs and cats and a few horses, and most of them were animals that society had thrown away for a variety of reasons.
Over the years, I learned to take each and every foster-dog through a self-designed boot camp that meant that the dog would be near me during almost every waking hour, and would be exercised to the point of being really tired every single day. For the …

In which Willy returns home from his wilderness adventures--hooray!

Willy is back home again, after five weeks of working with the Northwest Youth Corps, on the North 4 "Red" crew.They saw some amazing stuff. They worked really hard. The weather was not always cooperative.
They got plenty tired.
They had plenty fun.
They made good friends.

Willy learned some stuff.

...and he brought his knowledge home.

In which hay baling is funnier than I thought--DON'T try this at home!

More updates from the farm coming soon, I promise.

In which I share a nice story about a standie happy ending

There's still stuff trying to happen here at the farm, and I'm not deliberately being vague, I promise...but until stuff actually DOES happen, I need to "tread water" online for another day or so. Sorry, friends and readers!

In the meantime, let me share a story that I found linked on the "Now THAT'S a Trot" blog.

This is Matt:
On the racetrack, Matt was called "Asamatteroffact", and he did just fine there: 176 starts, $286,628 in earnings and a mark of 1:50.3z. Come retirement time, the price for this horse was $330. Such a low price can obviously result in a one-way ticket on the meat truck to Canada, if not for Ellen Harvey and her friends.

This group of folks, who call themselves "The Starfish Stables" (after a story that you can read online here) get together periodically and buy up standardbreds to rehabilitate and rehome.

Here's Ellen's article about Matt and the other "starfishes." I hope y…

In which I enjoy a sunny day with my favorite Fiddle-girl

Sure, there's tons of work that needs to be done around the Farm.

But the sky will only be blue for a limited time.

Here in the Swamp, summer is beautiful but short. Autumn is also beautiful, but sometimes even shorter.

I've written before about the un-official motto of Haiku Farm: "Memento Hiber!"

That's the reason that, yesterday afternoon, I went out with Fiddle to soak in a few hours of blue skies. The memories will keep me warm all winter long.

(fairy nests in bloom)

(the local snack bar--ripe blackberries for me...
...and young blackberry leaves for my noble steed)
Life is just fine.

In which the garden is a soothing place for me, and so: here's pictures!

There are big changes on the horizon at Haiku Farm, and I'm more than slightly freaked out.

I'll post details here after Sunday...but until then, I'm spending some time in the garden.

Last year's garden was pathetic, although it did, eventually, produce some vegetables(world's smallest giant pumpkin plant, July 30, 2009)

This year we've been plenty busy again, but the good work provided by our wonderful chickens (who lived in the garden's "Winter Palace" over the winter) has made a big difference in the garden!
(squash and pumpkin plants, August 2010)(baby pumpkins, August 2010)
Here's what's growing around the Farm:These are a medium-sweet variety, and turn a gorgeous shade of purple when they're ripe (late September). Last year I rescued these beauties from beneath 100 years growth of briers, and this year they have been growing like crazy.

Speaking of purple:(purple beans, August 2010)We eat these beans almost every night. We could probab…

In which a friend looks so dang good that I don't even recognize her!

For reasons unrelated to farm life, I spent a few days in Victoria, BC recently.(If you want to see more about my business there, check out my other blog.)

A certain part of my trip DOES belong on the farm blog, however.

While on the Island, I met up with this very nice lady:
Say "hi" to Jacqui, everybody.

Although Jacqui has never (yet) visited Haiku Farm, she is still a vital contributer to an important facet of our life here. Why?

Well, let me tell you.

In late 2006, my beloved mare Story had to be put down. It was a very difficult time for all of us. You can read about it here (have a hanky ready).

Less than a week later, I got a phone call from Greener Pastures, a standardbred adoption organization just across the US/Canadian border.

We heard about Story, they said. You made the right decision, you were brave, blah blah blah.

We can't help noticing that you've got an empty stall now.

GP was frantically seeking a place to put a big standie mare who had been adopted earlier…

In which photos of the Oregon Wilderness are shared with all y'all

Our Great Adventure this year was based around Waldo Lake in the mountains of Central Oregon.

Waldo Lake is the second largest lake in Oregon (anybody wanna guess which is bigger?) and covers about 10 square miles. Because it does not get water from any other lakes or rivers, it is also one of the cleanest, purest bodies of water in the world.
The State of Oregon (finally) resolved last year to disallow gasoline motors on the lake in order to maintain the purity of the water. Good.

I found it interesting that the Forest Service says that Waldo Lake was isolated from humans until the late 1800s, yet the information on the map of the area (which is published by the very same Forest Service) notes that there is evidence of native tribal groups camping and hunting in the area dating back a few thousand years.

Yeah. I'm not gonna touch that.

Lemme tell you what we did and what we saw!

Our original intent was to follow the South Waldo trail for a few miles, and then head uphill on the High Di…