Friday, August 15, 2014

In which Duana is searching for wheels and everyone loves apples

Duana has come a long way in the past three years.  

She returned to riding in 2011, after nearly 8 years horse-free, and started trail riding and taking lessons.  She bought a certain redheaded radish of a horse two years later.

She did some Limited Distance endurance events last year, and has finished two fifties with Hana so far this year.  

And today, she officially started shopping for a horse trailer of her very own.

She definitely wants a two-horse slant-load.  But there are so many options!

The "cargo area" will double as camping space.

How much furniture is too much in a tack room?

A used trailer would be cheaper...

...but the aluminum trailer is much lighter-weight...

...and a rear-tack can double as storage space for hay and buckets.
 She's not ready to decide yet, which is good.  Most of the trailers on the dealer's lot are already sold!  But we aren't done shopping yet.  Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, back at the farm
Santa Jim, aka Farmer Jim, checks the apple trees

We don't usually get fabulous apples from our trees.  The trees are old, and the varieties aren't very well-selected for our region.  Usually we get some Yellow Transparants--good for applesauce and chicken food.

But this year, the Pink Lady tree decided to kick into high gear!

Bright pink skin, sweetish flesh.  Small, but nice. 

 The chickens aren't the only ones who like these apples!

Roo chases them, and then eats them

Luna doesn't have many teeth left,
but she likes to gum an apple or two every day while they are falling

Throw apples into the pasture and stand back for the stampede!

The turkeys have decided that dandelions and blueberries
are no longer their favorites. Apples are the best!

Even the neighbors like our apples.
It's still summer...barely.

But the autumn harvest is beginning already!  And that is not a bad thing at all.

In fact, it's rather Good.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

In which it's still summer but you could start your holiday shopping now!

A few years ago, the library had a huge run on "whatever happened to...?" books.

You know the kind of book I mean: where the picture of the child actor, super athlete, or political figure you remember from your childhood or teen years is juxtaposed against a current photo of the definitely-older-but-still cute/athletic/charismatic person of interest.

That kind of book never interested me much. I was never much a fangirl of celebrities or the like. 

This kind of book is the kind of book I prefer:

Standardbred Old Friends 
Photography by Barbara Livingston, Stories by Ellen Harvey

In this beautifully-illustrated coffee table edition, Ellen Harvey describes the careers of well-known racing Standardbreds...and goes on to tell the stories of their lives after retiring from the track.

The stories are sometimes extraordinary and breathtaking.  Sometimes they are quiet and reassuringly ordinary.

We've all heard too many "Black Beauty" stories of horses used up and thrown away after racing.  We all know too many examples of talented horses sold to unworthy homes or to the meat packer.

It's good to know that there are, out there in the world, people who value their older horses.

Mack Lobell may be retired, but he still has at least one big fan

 And it's good to see some beautiful photos of older horses who aren't done living yet.

Liz and Dreamy, stars of the Standardbred Excellence blog

If you want to read some "good news horse stories" or you know somebody who needs to read stories like that, here's your book.  The pictures are pretty enough to cheer you up on a gloomy day, and the stories are terrific reading anytime.  

Want to see more?  

Wanna order a copy for yourself or a friend?  HERE'S THE LINK.

(Yes, it will eventually be available through Amazon.  However, the authors don't get much $$$ from Amazon sales -- voice of experience -- so they are opting to sell directly to customers for now.)

Highly recommended for equestrians (not just fans of standardbreds) who spend hours online looking at pictures of other people's horses...and for anyone who might ever become a fan of Team Sensible....and for anyone who likes to read a book full of happy endings.

Monday, August 11, 2014

In which it's summer, so we all pretty much do what we always do

Number One on the list is always

Patty's selfie + me and Fee photobombing!

The view I love to view

Up and down and all around

With my friends

And my pony!

There are always chores at the farm, too. 

 It's never too soon to get firewood in.

Wood splitting is therapeutic as well as useful.

And we always try to to attend the Festival of the River.

The garden is growing, the lawn needs mowing, 

Santa got a new mower--reindeer hitch not included!

But first, I think, it's time to go