The last three days have been exhausting. I can say with 100% assurance that I am ready for spring!
Saturday rolled around and we needed to push in bales to everyone. Some day we'll get a tractor that can actually lift round bales. When we can finally afford one of those, it'll be a godsend. The current tractor is out of commission so we use the plow truck to tip the bales on to their tops and then drag them in to the drylot or for the hopsital ward, we push them in. It makes for an interesting experience. We use a long cable to tip and drag the bales. It's a heavy duty cable and sometimes it kicks my butt. Mike is the one who drags and pushes the bales where they need to go. I'm the cable girl, dragging and lifting the cable wherever it needs to go. Mind you, it's much easier now that I'm not eight months pregant!
Unfortunately, to push bales in to the drylot, we have to wait for the little bear to fall asleep. Being that it is way easier to push bales in when there are two of us, we've learned to push bales in on the weekend when there's plenty of time, even if the herd isn't done with the bales. We wait for the little bear to fall asleep, suit him up in his snowsuit, buckle him into the car seat, and secure him in the truck so he can help move bales around. The last couple of times have worked out well. He's definitely a kid on the move.
I have the herd locked out of the pasture so that they wouldn't tear up what little pasture we still have. So when we push bales in, that means I have to either halter all nine horses or put some in the barn. At least the horses are learning that when I halter them, it doesn't always mean work. I need to start working with them so they'll never know when they'll be caught for work and when they will be caught for other reasons.
We pushed two bales in to the drylot and then had to push a bale in to the hospital ward. I had Bo tied up but he was going balistic. If I thought he was lame, I stand corrected. He was pawing, prancing in place, and kicking out at everything he could.. Once he made contact with his back legs, he continued to kick out. So there goes the thought that he's lame. I decided to untie him until we were ready to push his bale in. He was getting himself so worked up that I wasn't sure I'd be able to get him cooled down before the weather turned. He was starting to get lathered up. When I released him, he trotted sound. Not a falter. I think he may have a pinched nerve. We finally got the bale in to Babe and Bo's pens and then went to tip another bale for the mares.
I've been a little naughty about hauling water. That used to be Mike's job. I have a bad hip and bad wrists so Mike used to haul water for me. Now that we have the little bear, I'm out there hauling water. I haven't been keeping up with the mares until now. I made a number of trips the last couple of days trying to keep up with the water levels. Mayhem drinks so much water. I remember Chaos drinking a bunch of water too when he was young. I'm half tempted to put Bo back in with the big herd and put Mayhem in with Babe so that I don't have to haul water as far. But we'll see. If my body starts to give out, that'll be the route I have to go. Until then, I'll just haul water in two 5 gallon buckets at a time and hope I don't spill most of it on the haul back.
We had plans on Sunday but the weather changed them, along with the flu bug. The bear has been a little off but Mike caught the flu bug and it knocked him down hard on Sunday. It's probably a good thing because a blizzard set in on Sunday too. Oh sure, our county was in a Winter Weather Advisory but the next county over was in a Blizzard Watch. I hate to tell people but the weather doesn't stop at the county line (although in some cases it oddly does). But as far as I'm concerned, we were in a Blizzard Warning.
I went out Sunday morning to get some of the chores done after being up half the night with a sick baby and a sick husband. It was already snowing by then. It was actually snowing the night before while we attended a Christmas party. But the snow kept falling and by the time I went out Sunday morning, we had a bunch of snow.
The weatherman was calling for sub zero temps by Sunday night. I was NOT prepared to hear that news. It was snowing so much and the horses were getting soaked. I decided I'd better throw blankets on a few of the horses that wouldn't be going into the barn. It took a little bit but everyone was pretty well satisfied after they had their blankets on.
A few years ago, I bought some Jeffers blankets. I've never really been satisfied with them because they fit everyone really goofy. I decided that I would put one of the Jeffers blankets on Rabbit and keep the brand new blanke for Bo. Bo has always had hand me downs and it's about time that he has his very own blanket. I think I had it on him one other time. But now it's going to be designated for Bo only. I threw the Jeffers blanket on Rabbit and it fits beautifully. I have a second Jeffers blanket so we'll have to try it on another one of the stoud quarter horses to see if it fits. I was rather tickled that Rabbit now has a blanket that fits her perfectly. Babe didn't really care one way or another if she was wearing a blanket but I feel better.
I petered out after getting blankets on and doing morning chores. I had hoped to get a bit more ready for evening chores. I prefer to open the barn doors at night and have them all walk in instead of having to get everything ready. I had thought I would go back out early in the afternoon but sick baby and sick husband made other plans. So it wasn't until early evening as the sun was setting that I was able to get back out there to do chores. By that time, the cold front had set in. I was SO glad that I'd thrown blankets on some of the horses. The other horses were happy to get into the barn.
I woke Monday morning to sub zero temps as I went out to do chores. I had to go and get a hammer to break open Bo's water. I hate that he's not able to share Babe's big 100 gallon water tank but he doesn't play nice. I have a heated water bucket I might try but we'll see. There's only so many extension cords and circuits I can use before I start blowing stuff up. I ended up staying home Monday to make sure everyone was recovering ok from the flu. Interestate was still closed for a portion of my drive to work. I didn't think it necessary to go to work when interestate was still closed. Call me lazy, but if interstate is still closed in the vacinity that I have to drive in, then I think it's best if I stay home and avoid the backroads that I would be forced to drive.
I didn't really do too much yesterday other than putter in the house. The horses hung out, devouring their round bales. Bo kept his head in the bale. The only time I didn't see him at the bale was when he went back into his shed and fell asleep. Bo is gaining weight back but I'm sure glad he has his blanket on these last couple of days. I'm going to have to pull blankets tomorrow morning. The weather is supposed to get warm again for Wed and Thur.
I went to do chores this morning and it was snowing again. I won't complain too much about the snow. We need the precipe but I'd be much happier if it would come in the form of warm rain. But I guess we are pretty luck for it to wait until December to snow.
Which reminds me, three years ago on December 9th, we brought Jim home. I was reflecting on that adventure while doing chores Sunday during the snow storm. Three years ago I ended up going to a horse auction on Saturday. Jim was slated to go to a different auction that Saturday but we said we would take him and pick him up on Sunday. I'd wanted to know what the prices were like. I'm kicking myself for not having just bought Jim at the auction. It would have been cheaper but at least this way he was saved from being exposed to different diseases and I got to get information from the owner. We picked him up that Sunday and it was SO cold. I remember trying to put a blanket on him but my fingers had gotten so cold that they wouldn't work any more. Jim stood like a champ, patiently waiting for me to stop fumbling around. When we finally got him home that evening, we heard that a snow storm was on it's way. And boy did it ever! I think that was the winter where we had so much snow! I have picutres to show how much snow piled up and drifted in the yard. I should pull those out and show the time lapse. But is it sad that I can remember brining a horse home because of the snow storm that ensued? Guess it makes for a good story. Here's to hoping that we don't have any more blizzards for the year.