Showing posts from October, 2013

In which there is riding with friends from far away, and from not-so-far

It was a beautiful day.  So, of course we went riding!

But look who came with us:  It's lytha from the HorseCrazyAmerican blog!

She's here in the States for only two short weeks--but we were determined to get her out on the trails while visiting.  And look:

Blue sky!

lytha is from here, and can *totally* cope with Swamplandic grey skies and drippy branch trails.  But how delightful to be able to take her out on the trail under blue skies!

We didn't go fast, because we were travelling with Dory's green horse "Windfire" (we immediately dubbed him "Blue Flame" b/c he's that kind of a guy...) and with Patty and Flower.  Flower has been off-and-on lame.  She seems to be quite sound now, hurrah!

With all this sunshine

we naturally headed uphill

until we got to

the clearcut that comes right before

the monument!

Flower had an emotional thingy going on, so she had to stand still and regain her grey cells

but the other horses grazed nonchalantly.

And of…

In which people didn't know that the Dragon does tricks, so here's some proof

Fiddle has learned that when newcomers visit Haiku Farm, they often ask for the full tour.

They want to see the chickens.

They want to pet the goats.

They want to admire the garden.

And many, many of them want to see the Dragon.

In the Olden Days, this was a problem.  She was a nasty Dragon, after all, and it was awkward having a Dragon who tried to eat visitors.

So I taught her tricks.

Now, when she sees a new car in the driveway, and a bunch of strangers in the yard, she comes to the fence, ready to show off her tricks.  The strangers clap for the tricks--and more importantly, they hand her cookies when she does them.

When I posted a Facebook status recently about this, a friend who hadn't seen Fiddle in many years commented:  "The Dragon does tricks?"

Why, yes.  She does.  Watch!

Although some folks think that a Dragon doing tricks for carrots is kind of strange, I'm astonished at the number people who think that dogs doing tricks for carrots is even more strange.

In which a guest stops by to tell about being a photographer

Aarene's introduction:  In the past few years I've learned a lot about being a photographer from my friend Monica.  Monica has taught me a lot about light and angle and composition....and mostly what I've learned is that taking really good photographs is a lot more difficult than just showing up and pressing a button.  
That's why I'm so thrilled to host today's guest blogger:  a talented photographer who is also a talented rider...who is also one of my "former juniors."  
(It's kind of awkward to say that a person is my "former junior," actually.  The truth is that, although Jessica Anderson grew out of junior status a long time ago, I will always consider her one of my own, although we haven't yet ridden an endurance ride together.  She was a kid in camp when I was an adult in camp, and that makes her one of mine--and since I love all my juniors for life, I am happy to say that, even after all these years, when she's in camp and…

In which I visit the Dry Side, get some wonderful gifts, and share out

For reasons mostly unrelated to this blog, I took the Little Red Riding Truck to the Dry Side of our state last weekend...

So, why am I mentioning the trip on a mostly-horsey blog?  Because I visited Horsey Friends, of course!

Gail and Mike told me to bring coolers with me when I came over to their side

and they stocked me up, with fresh apples (Golden Delicious and Pink Lady)

and a bunch of frozen beef and elk meat!

Obviously, this called for a share-out.

So, when I got home, I started gathering up a bunch of the last produce from the garden

and packed it up

and loaded it in the truck

and started dropping off food.  First at the neighbors' houses

and then at Fish Creek Farm.   Then, I came home and started throwing some of the goodies together for dinner.

This is a true Pacific Northwestern Dinner.  The recipe (such as it is, I was making it up as I went along) is posted after the photo.  It goes well with elk steaks, or whatever else you've got.

In which "riding" trumps "doctor's office", but sometimes I gotta do both

This is where I wanted to be:

This is where I was:

Before we left for the Jubilee Ranch ride, we knew that the progress on my hip pain/flexibility/strength had hit a plateau.

I am significantly stronger and better balanced than I was before starting PT in July.  In fact, only after I finished loading for the ride did I realize that I hadn't flopped the hay end-over-end into the trailer.  I'd picked up a 75-pound hay bale and tossed it into the trailer without even thinking about it.  I couldn't have done that unassisted, even two months ago.

But still.  I wasn't improving anymore.  And, as the cold wet weather moved in, I was hurting a lot, and taking fistfuls of naproxen, ibuprofen, and tylenol in order to get ordinary stuff done at work and on the farm.

I rode at Jubilee with minimal pain (especially compared with my discomfort in July), but two days after returning home, I could barely walk.  Warm dry weather at the ride was lovely for my arthritic joints; coming …