Monday, May 31, 2010

California Here We Come

Randy and I, with one kid (Hilary), 3 horses (Katie, Jasmine and Destiny) and 5 dogs (Sherman and Rocket of course, and Darci, Vada and Ty) are headed for a week in San Diego, at Sweetwater Camppground. Last year was a blast but too short so this year I made reservations for 2 extra days... and my goal this year is to get my horse in the ocean not just to her knees, but to her belly! We plan to ride at the beach twice, and also check out the Cuyamaca area... plus of course the ride out from the campground through the city park to Jack-In-The-Box, and more rides the other direction from the campground with a view of the lake. AND enjoy the cooler weather!!! Lows in the 40s, highs in the 70s... sounds like heaven!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Packed and Ready!

Well, almost... today I helped my friend Melanie move, hard to commit to the day before a week's vacation BUT since she gave me a week's notice, I was sure I could have everything ready for the trip by last night... HA! However I did get the shopping done on my way home from moving and all that is left for morning is to pack the coolers and load the critters...

Friday, May 28, 2010

And We Loped Again!

I am really enjoying this class, Barb is a great teacher. Jasmine is really coming along, flexing nicely to the left although she is not good at all to the right {sigh} so of course that tells me what I need to work on...

And we loped AGAIN last night! Unfortunately, again, not long enough lol... but it will come!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Our Final High School Graduate!

CONGRATULATIONS to Alex, our youngest, on his gradution with honors from Glendale High School tonight :)

And despite parents divorcing and all the other myriad issues thrown at our kids during their lives, we are quite pleased and proud to be able to say we had all five of our kids graduate from high school ON TIME and without issues!!!


**Just a note of interest... this is the same high school that my dad graduated from!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

We Loped!!!

Just a few steps last night at class, but it was my first time loping on Jasmine {big grin} I can't wait to do it more, I am sure she will be smooth like Katie but I didn't really have time to get into her rhythm...

...and today Rose and John came out again, John dug up the last old fence post from INSIDE the small paddock so I don't have to worry about Luna and Skeye while we are gone on vacation... and Rose helped me brush EVERYBODY, thank goodness it was breezy!!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Spring has Sprung!!!

This little tree stands out front of my house. It waits until long past when other things have bloomed as it gets warm... and then...

Here's a close-up. Ain't it purdy???

Friday, May 14, 2010

Well Just Maybe...

Randy called last night and said the water pump and the radiator have now been replaced on the truck (thanks Dad!) AND, Dad said the parts of the radiator he could see were 30-50% plugged (so who knows about the parts he could NOT see!) AND, the water pump was starting to go as well.

So this morning I will ride into town with Randy on his way to school and bring the truck home... then after the vet comes to finish the horses' paperwork for the San Diego trip, I will hook up the big heavy trailer and up Yarnell Hill I will go... prayers will be welcome and I will edit this posting later to let you all know how it went!


When I picked up the truck, Randy's dad (who worked all his life as a diesel mechanic and so has been a Godsend, saving us a TON of money on repairs!!) said that if this doesn't work, the next step is... A GRENADE!

Well my plans for later tonight got pushed to tomorrow (dinner and a movie with my girls, but since they both work till 7:30 we decided to do lunch and a movie tomorrow) anyway with no deadline to be home, I decided to wait for Randy to get home from school and let HIM drive the truck up the hill ;)

AND IT IS FIXED!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We got all the way up without stopping, without having to downshift, AND WITH THE A/C ON THE WHOLE WAY... and the truck never got past the "0" in 190 which is mid-range on the temperature gauge.



Thursday, May 13, 2010

And Some Donkey Therapy...

Thought it would be nice to get some pictures and videos for my prospective "parents" while enjoying my therapy session :) (Note you may want to turn your sound down, the wind was HORRID!)

Alvin sends his new mom a kiss

More Alvin, along with Sarah Beth and Benjamin, as well as Betty Jean, Mary Ellen and Milly Jo

And one concentrating on Benjamin

And I got a few still pictures as well:

Benjamin scratching an itch

Sarah Beth - see Benjamin hugging her?

Alvin and his mom, Betty Jean (on the left), checking out Riley the Yorkshire Terrier, who thought he needed to protect mom from the donks!

They were really keeping an eye on that FIERCE dog (he weighs less than 4 pounds!!!)

It's hard to get good pictures when they follow so closely!

I enjoyed my evening, and STILL had time to trim two donks AND feed everyone before dark!

A goodbye kiss from Alvin

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Own Personal Therapy Department

Last night after work I went out again to have more donkey and doggie therapy, but this time I took the camera along... Stay tuned for the donks tomorrow, but here is a glimpse of my own personal therapy department:

The puppies found the ONE little patch of grass in our yard... LITTLE being the operative word as you will see...

Here is AJ on the front porch, sitting pretty for the camera...

Ty, wondering WHAT THE HECK Esmerelda is doing under there!

Tank, Ty and AJ - look at Ty, he wags his tail so hard his whole hiney is blurry!!

Radar and Esmerelda

Sherman and chihuahuas in the grassy patch...

I was trying to get a shot of Esmerelda's cute little face with her button eyes, but since she is incapable of holding still for more than half a second at a time, the little wiggleworm... and really I can't blame it all on her anyway, because one or more of the others is always trying to get in the middle of things as you can see!

Tank and Rocket - our big boy is SO patient with the little pests!

Angel is so proud of the stick she found, but Jacob soon stole it!

Angel got her stick back but then ROCKET decided to steal it!

"Not me mom, honest!!!"

Tank sneaking away while he has the chance...

Standing on the back porch calling the tiny ones into the house, I find I am missing one... AJ, where are you???

I don't know, is it just me or what? There is just SOMETHING about this face :)

This is a great time of year for doggie therapy, it's not THAT hot when I get home, but it's staying light long enough I have time to play a little AND get the chores done!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

5 Minutes A Day

I visited Mikey's blog today, trying to catch up as I was away for the weekend... and see that she posted about spending 5 minutes a day with each critter... well often times I don't get that much {to be fair some days some of them get much more though!} but like someone else commented to Mikey, at least 2x a day they all get fed and looked at! But I thought it ironic as last night I was actually able to spend a few minutes with each and every equine, one pen at a time. I started with Dillon and his harem, since I was filling a large water tub I just got (used but cheap) to make sure it doesn't leak before attaching an automatic waterer to it, they are the only pen left that does not have auto water yet... after a weekend with Madeline I just had to love on my Dillon and tell him all about his girl. Of course Betty Lou and Susie Q had to come push in and get their fair share, so I added a quick talk to BL's belly as it is definitely looking like a new baby in there, I'm guessing I'll see what is what in October... looking at the girls' hooves I see I'd best get busy trimming again, gave my hands a few days' break but can't let this chore get too far behind! Josey Marie, shy as always, hanging back but did let me approach and check her underneath, she looks like she could deliver any day but Randy saw her "flirting" just a few weeks ago and there is no bag at all, not even enlarged nipples, so darn it I guess she is just still FAT! She and Milly Jo were fat when I got them and although I have tried to work on that, it's hard when they are in with others... I'm thinking that this summer I may have to split the girls into "regular" and "diet" pens instead of letting them all run together!

Once the water tub was full I headed for the big girls to check on Jasmine's limp, yup still a bit "off" but still cannot see ANY reason why she should be... so frustrating! Luna and Katie came to see what was going on {and jones for treats} but since I didn't have any treats they just got scritches and hugs. Had to shoo them away more than once so I could spend time with my Skeye girl, she was gone long enough that she is a little leery of them now and when they push in she takes off. I sure missed those baby blues though and it's good to have her back home!

Off to Wiley and his harem I went... I'd bet money Peggy Sue will pop in October as well, and Becky Lynn is still a puzzle, one day I am sure she is pregnant too and the next day well gee, is she just fat? Wiley's nose and lips are healing up nicely but he will carry those scars for life I bet. I will have to make certain that he and Dillon have NO CHANCE to ever get near each other again, despite Wiley being quite a bit bigger Dillon definitely go the upper hand in their tussle. Can't get mad at him though because he was on the INSIDE of the pen and Wiley could have easily walked away and avoided the whole thing... after all he had most of 5 acres to roam on! Nikki Renee had her 4 days of Indian Mud on her sarcoids and now we are in the 10-day waiting period to see what happens, whether they disappear or she needs another course of meds... also frustrating because I don't know what it is supposed to look like, this being my first time with sarcoids, but I keep checking every day anyway. And although Taffy Leah was trimmed more recently than some of the others, her front right is growing out crooked so right then and there I decide that after I feed, she is the one who gets trimmed.

So it's off to get feed ready and while the pellets are soaking I pop into the last pen, the garden, where the mamas and babies are... and Milly Jo who also looks like she could drop YESTERDAY but STILL HAS NO UDDER! She was fat when she came here last year but she DOES look different to me, less round and more pear-shaped, so better safe than sorry, despite the lack of udder she is staying in the foaling area... and wonder of wonders, little Alvin the B-R-A-T is gone and we finally have another sweet-as-pie little donkey jonesing for scritches, YAHOO! I might be remembering wrong but I think it has taken him the longest of any of the foals to get through that initial baby shyness... he has been so hard to get close too until now!

Fed everybody and trimmed up Taffy Leah, then in the house to dinner and after dinner, it's time for a round of puppy shots and nail trims. Thankfully most of the canine kids are pretty good although Randy's lil darlin Vada was a pistol for her shot, so he said don't worry about nails, hers aren't bad... and Ty, OMG you would think we were cutting off his TOES one by one instead of just trimming nails! However doing shots and nail trims ourselves saves us a decent chunk of cash since we have so many, and I am quite thankful that I get to be the "grab-and-hold" person and Randy does the tough part ;) and although I worry about it sometimes, they don't seem to hold grudges and I still got good-night snuggles from everyone before I went to bed.

Monday, May 10, 2010

@#$%^&* Truck!!!

Off I went on Friday for a fun horse camping trip to Groom Creek... yeah right! It took me 90 minutes, instead of 15, to get up Yarnell Hill - had to stop SEVEN times to let the truck cool down so I didn't overheat :( AND, once more on the way up that last hill into Prescott... and AGAIN on the very last hill out of Prescott on the way to the campground... GGGRRRRRRR!!!

Well eventually I DID make it to camp. And I had a nice weekend. Just a few pictures...

A Katie earcam of snow we found along the trail up Spruce Mountain...

Katie waiting patiently at lunch

This "guy" was watching us come down the trail {see the face?}

Katie and Jasmine telling me it is dinner time!

This gal "stole" my Rocket... don't worry Joe, it's only temporary, there is NO WAY I would let her keep my boy!

I took a TON of pictures of my grand-donkey Madeline who was also on this trip with her parents and her 2 mule brothers... but you will have to pop over to her blog for those ;)

I figured no worries after that first hill OUT of Prescott on the way home... HA! @#$%^&* truck, coming down the hill out of the campground area the front brakes started acting funny. With Yarnell Hill to come DOWN, no way was I comfortable with funny brakes. Called Randy and he hooked up the Jeep to the small trailer and met me halfway home, we transferred 2 women, 3 dogs, and the 2 biggest horses to the Jeep and small trailer and, having emptied all the water barrels as well, sent Randy and Katie down the hill in the big rig with lots of prayers. Of course he says the truck didn't act funny at all for him, brakes or overheating... although the portion fo the road he drove, I didn't expect it to overheat even fully loaded...


He IS going to replace some more parts anyway just in case... after all I have TWO big hills to pull on the way to San Diego next month.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Happy Anniversary to Us!

TEN YEARS!!!! A personal record for me anyway - NEXT year we will both have been married to each other longer than anyone else {YAY!}

Randy got me a computer program from National Geographic called TOPO Arizona, digital topographic maps. He is pretty excited about it. I am wondering a) when I will find time to learn it and b) IF I can learn it and c) if it will really help me find trails to ride... but he is so excited of course I will have to try!

And his present is that I am going away for the weekend and won't be here making him do chores ;)

PS Baby bird was nowhere to be seen on the floor of the hay barn so I am hoping it is still safe in the nest!!!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Baby Birds (pics added)

...are everywhere! There are nest in corners of most of the old garage doors we use for roofs. up by the house for Randy's "shop", and on the mini pens... AND there is one WAAAAAY at the top of my 18 foot tall hay barn!!! So of course tonight when I went in to get the dogs' food, there on the floor being sniffed by several dogs was a baby bird. GEEZ! Luckily I do have a LOOOOOONG ladder...

I knew it would die if I left it be. AND I knew it would die if I tried to feed it, been there done that, it was too small. SO I figured what the heck, I will put it back and see if mama will give it a chance. Gently placed the baby where the dogs could not reach and went to get my LOOOOOOONG ladder...

Now me I don't do heights well... I can GO up ok... I can BE up sorta ok... but when it comes to LEAVING up, that's when the stomach ties in knots. But I got the ladder set up after a dirt shower {fun} and then gently scooped up baby and proceeded to climb with one hand {yikes} ok it is not so easy to GO up with one hand... one step at a time, and trying to use my other elbow to hang on while switching my free hand from one rung to the next, while not jostling baby...


Well I managed it, got the baby back in the nest, and then it was time to come down. Oh geez!!! My stomach is in knots, my heart is racing AND pounding, my mouth is dry... I'd have loved to close my eyes but didn't dare!

Anyway since I am posting you can see I made it down without breaking my arms lol.

the hay barn

the location of the nest

the nest

And I am mostly packed and ready for my camping-wht-the-horses-at-Groom-Creek weekend YAHOOOOOOOO!!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lots Accomplished!

With all the donkey visits and horseback rides over the weekend I didn't get a chance to post what ELSE happened on Saturday... John and Rose came and spent a good part of the day with me, and we accomplished A LOT! Rose and I finished my bridge for my obstacle course while John dug up another fence post and the accompanying ton of concrete that the folks who lived here before always used... we also dug up the remaining 5-6 oleander stumps which I had been dreading... and John took care of one of the dead eucalyptus trees - the one right in the middle of what is now "the road" to the back of the property. AND we repaired the small fence around the bamboo that the horses had trampled...

I am SO LUCKY to have Rose and John!!!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Life With Madeline

For over a year I have been bugging Linda to do a blog about Madeline, with no success. In designing my new donkey website, I went back to her AzBCR thread posts to hijack some pictures but there was so much information and so many pictures my bargain-basement website program couldn't hold them all. So I broke down and...

I'm so proud of this particular grand-donkey especially, she does fantastic PR!!

Because blogger lets you pick a date for your posts, I am able to go back and "recreate" this past year with Madeline... check it out, and be sure to check back as I haven't gotten but a couple months finished yet!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Jasmine's First REAL Trail Ride

What a fabulous day! Even if we did almost blow away - ye gads the gale force winds!!!

Five of us rode out from my house and met up with 4 more, then headed north and east to the Shell Station (and SUBWAY!) for lunch. On the way back we looped south and then west for different scenery.

And my new mare just impressed me more and more. TONS of new stuff to see, and the wind was awful, but nothing bothered her - NOTHING!!!!!

Just a few pictures...

This wash is a blast, VERY GOOD for long-trotting or gaiting to work on muscle!

My friend Pat came to ride Katie and it was pure pleasure seeing this mare from a different angle... I am so used to being on top! She is just gorgeous... Makes me think that someday I will have to let someone else ride Jasmine so I can watch that too. In fact when Hilary rode her for the first time, I didn't want her to stop, I enjoyed it so much - even though it was going to be MY turn next!

This was a first ride for Laurie and her new horse Cheyenne too!
And Laurie got a few shots of me!

After the ride we had our donkey fix :)

Oh come one, go ahead, just say it...


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Farewell Charles!!!

Some nice folks came today to look at Charles and Benjamin in person, trying to decide which one to take home since the pictures didn't help them decide. Well it didn't surprise me at all that they decided on BOTH of the boys {grin} so Charles was delivered this afternoon and Benjamin will be following in about a month when he is weaned.

Jasmine's Second Class

Jasmine and I went to class alone last night, and again she did really well! My friends actually made it to class and they were full of admiration for my girl which makes me SMILE! I do value their opinion...

The more I ride this mare the happier I am with her!!!