Thursday, April 30, 2009

No More "Mama's Boy"!

Yesterday I was walking through my south pasture and came across some pretty rough looking characters.....

I think they're the twin fawns who graced our farm last spring and summer, hugging their mama's side and growing like weeds. We had a hard winter for western Washington and I'm glad to see them back, safe and sound. Well....they were a little rough around the edges.

Harsh, wiry winter coats are coming off with a vengeance providing nesting material for the barn swallows. No worries 'bout the ribbiness....there's plenty of grass and young shoots to browse.

Soon Mama will leave these little guys behind to fend for themselves. If they were good students they'll have all the skills they need to "make it" in a big buck's world.

Mama looks like she'll be pretty busy teaching another little one pretty soon...and those rough looking characters in the pasture won't be "Mama's Boys" anymore.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Littlest Biggest Loser

So...what's a guy to do when swim suit season is coming and you have, uh, a "little" weight to take off? Folks who have miniature horses have a saying: "Minis gain weight on AIR!". It is very safe to say minis are very easy keepers. That brings us to "Quaker" (Mountain Meadows Quaker 6.8). Quaker was born very shortly after the Nisqually earthquake on February 28, 2002. His mama said something like, "This ground is arockin' and arollin' -- no WAY is this baby staying inside!" And so Quaker was born. Tell me, have you ever met a horse with a Richter scale reading in his name?

Today was the start of Quaker's weight loss program. First came the vital statistics: heart girth 45 inches, height at the withers (where the neck attaches to the back, kinda) 32 1/4 inches, body length from point of shoulder to point of buttocks 37 inches. Check, check and double check. Add the measurements to a way-cool spreadsheet and presto-chango, Quaker comes up weighing 213 pounds. Sounds pretty tiny, right? Nope. He needs to weigh LESS!

Second comes the new pasture arrangement. This means not being out with his buddies in the big grassy pasture, porking out on new, sweet spring grass. This means no hanging out debating and salivating over what might be served for dinner. This means, OH MY, no, not the 'Jenny Craig Pasture'! Some know it as "dry lot" where no grass grows. If it does, it is attacked, ripped from its precarious position and devoured in an instant. In other words --- the pasture is DIRT. But there Quaker will have a controlled diet. His breakfast will be weighed every morning and fed to just him. He won't be able to muscle in on the other guy's grub.

Third comes the weight loss. It will be lonely out there but slowly, ever so slowly Quaker will become the littlest of the biggest losers. If you are a horse, it just doesn't cut it being "fluffy".

Friday, April 24, 2009

Mister Fancy Pants

Whether coming.......

Or going.......This little horse is "Mister Fancy-Pants"! No, no, that's not his real name...just what he thinks he is. His registered name is Hidden Haven's Poco Bandito. But to us, 'round the farm, he's just plain ole "Otis".

Plain? Mundane? Not. From the head tossing and mane flying to the high stepping and flashy footwork, this fellow is attitude with a capital "A". And, considering his back is less than a yard off the ground, he is quite the package!

"Fancy-pants" defined: "overly elegant or refined". Ha! I liked Mr. Webster's added definition:


Plain ole "Otis" would have liked Mr. Webster.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

"Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"


( words and music by Pete Seeger)

Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the flowers gone?
Girls have picked them every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?"

Geesh....does this song and this flower ever bring me back, waaaaaay back. I remember tramping through the woods of the Pacific Northwest as a newbie Campfire Girl at Camp Sealth, singing this song and probably not knowing what it was about.

Midway through the hike our counselor (THE coolest gal in the world) stopped dead in her tracks. She raised her index finger to her lips and whispered.........."shhhhh". Wide eyed and oh, so impressionable, all the campers stood very still. Cool counselor pointed, in reverence, to a flower, the trillium. "A" trillium --- as there was only one. She told us they were a protected flower species in Washington State and we were to never, ever pick one. Heads shook back and forth affirming the sin would never, ever happen.

Last night, tramping down my long driveway I found her again. No, not the counselor silly (she would be trespassing!). The trillium. Oh, I have one too! Deep in the woods she stood, a diva in the forest. One bright splash of white and yellow in the deep green. Snap, I took her picture. I didn't touch her.

I know she might not be there next spring.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Enumclaw Gothic

Ahhhhhh, finally a break in the weather! That means a sunny day in the low 70's and there is work to be done in the (1 1/2 acre) yard.

The cavalry showed up with my top hand/hubby astride his trusty steed, "Boomer". They did the dirty work. I picked up way too many tree branches and raked leaves along the front fenceline. (Man those buggers are heavy after 50 plus inches of rain last year.)

But seriously now. Wouldn't you hire this lovely couple to maintain your estate? You should see them when they are tired and grumpy.

Friday, April 17, 2009

A blog is born...


I'd like to blame and to thank two friends, I have never met, for this baby blog! "Never met," you say? Yup. Linda and Penni both live a good 1600 miles from me, in New Mexico. They both have wonderful blogs. They both unleashed the blogger in me! They're "keepers" for sure and they'll be neighbors some day too. That will happen when I finally...finally retire to my ranch in New Mexico.

The picture above is of our place in Washington State last December (taken by daughter, Jennifer). If you look closely you can see a fuzzy donkey-belly behind one of the fences...that's "Pistol Pete". More about the critters on our place in the future. Granted, spring is here and tomorrow there will NOT be snow....but this picture was so pretty I couldn't resist.

See ya soon!


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About Me

Sandy ~~~

Born into suburbia, I was destined for life in the country. From an old dairy farm in Pennsylvania Dutch country to a lush horse property in the Pacific "Northwet", I've immersed myself into the rural life. My next destination? New Mexico, the "Land of Enchantment". There waits my new Pueblo-style home, a new barn and a ranch surrounded by sunshine, mountains and purple sunsets. Ahhh...sweet, sweet retirement! ~~~ Comments? I love comments! Just scroll to the bottom of each post and click on (duh!) --- "comments"!

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