Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Monday, December 29, 2014

F250

I hate to admit this but I will.

I bought my truck (the truck the Sanctuary uses to haul any horses), back in December 2004. It's a Ford F250. It's been a fairly dependable vehicle. It's paid off and I'm still pretty proud of being able to get it paid off almost in half the time. I'm a little weird when it comes to vehicles I guess. I tend to hang on to them for ages and still see them through rose colored glasses.

So it dawned on me that this month, I've had my truck for TEN years! That's right. Ten years. How crazy time flies. The best part.....

I bought the truck used when it was six months old and the original owner put 10,500 miles on it in six months. I've had it for TEN YEARS. Know how many miles *I* have put on that truck?

Not nearly enough. The truck is now sitting with 30,000 miles on it as of last Friday's vet visit with Junior!

Ten years and only 30,000 miles. Something tells me I don't haul horses nearly as much as a lot of people! :-) At this rate, we'll have that truck for years! Which is exactly my plan!

Happy Ten Year Anniversary to my Ford F250!

Skippy

Last Tuesday I went out to do chores and noticed that Skippy was lying down. He wasn't all sprawled out or rolling. He was simply curled up but jumped up when I walked near his pen. I proceeded to do chores and threw hay into his feeder.

Normally Skippy dives into the hay. Tommy acted like he'd been starving (he's fat by the way). Skippy nibbled at a few blades of hay and that was it.

Red Flag.

Skippy has never coliced before so I was shocked to see that he wasn't feeling well. Other than his skin allergy, he's been picture perfect healthy so I was taken by surprise that he was "off". I don't know if he was actually colicing or if he was a little off.

I pulled him out and walked him around in hopes that walking would help. He didn't act like he was going to roll. He kept his head down but with no snow, he was trying to grab a few  bites of dead grass. So I was having a hard time figuring out what was going on. Usually when I pull Skippy out, he's prancing and whinnying to Tommy and acting like a big shot. In most cases, he's usually pushing me around. But he walked along. Walking was my sign. He's always trotting when he's being led somewhere.

I decided I'd better get him a dose of banamine to see if that would help. Since I already had him in hand and was by the house, I decided to take him into the house. I wish I would have gotten a picture of it. It'll probably be the only time any horse is actually IN the house. Yup, that's right. I let Skippy into the house. That's how much I thought he wasn't feeling well. I gave him a dose of banamine and out the door we went for some more walking.

He didn't poop while I was talking him but I didn't know how much walking we could/should do. I also needed to get ready for our church (Cowboy Way Church had their Christmas session a day early so that we could enjoy our Christmas Eve).

I checked on Skippy right before we left for church and again when we got home. He seemed ok but I still was worried. When I went out to do chores in the morning, Skippy dove into his food. I'm not sure what it was. Nothing had changed. The feed was still the same, the water was the same, and the weather was the same. So who knows. I'll be keeping a closer eye on Skippy now that he's felt "icky".

Comfort Horses

The past week has been more than a blur than anything else. Unfortunately the holidays and stresses that go with it were too much for me last Monday. So I ended up wandering through the herd, petting everyone and just mulling around trying to de-stress.

That's when it hit me. I missed Queen. She was my Go-To Girl for any time my heard and mind were in turmoil. I hate to admit it but I lost it then. So I hung on the gate between the mares and the geldings. Rabbit was by the gate but she never moved. She never was the lovey dovey type. But Mayhem came over to see what was going on.

Queen taught Mayhem well. Within minutes of me just standing there, she came over to check on  me. I'm sure it was more out of curiosity rather than anything else but I'll take whatever I can get. She nuzzled me a few times to see what was going on. I wasn't sure if Mayhem would have the nurturing capability or not. She does.

Then Junior wiggled his way in to see what was going on. Believe it or not, Junior dared to bet in between Rabbit and Mayhem (and Rabbit's butt was facing Junior). Junior came over and put his muzzle on me a few times too! Then Mayhem decided to sidle up to Junior so there wasn't any room between the two.

So instead of having one Go-To horse, I now have two. Mayhem and Junior are my "comfort" horses. I could have stood there for hours and those two wouldn't have left my side. Although they did keep bumping me. I think that was their way of telling me that they cared and wanted to help.

I guess I never knew how much I needed a "comfort" horse until I didn't have one any more. Luckily I have two. Oh I'm sure they wouldn't let me hang on them like I did with Queen. But they'll understand when  my heart and  mind are in turmoil and need a comforting nuzzle on my cheek.

SmartPak Blanket Videos

I'm totally being lazy and simply linking to someone else's post who found the SmartPak Blanket videos.

One word...hilarious!

http://horseandman.com/horse-stories/smartpak-great-funny-entertaining-spot-videos-blanketing/12/27/2014/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Horseandmancom+%28horseandman.com%29

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

Vet Visit

I had a vet appointment scheduled for this past Friday. I wanted to take Junior in to make sure that his teeth weren't the reason why he was as thin as he was. I know his previous owner did everything for him and I vaguely remember her saying that she'd taken him to the vet for a float at some point. But I wanted our vet to do an overall evaluation on Junior. I figure a second opinion is always a good thing. But our vet came up with the same conclusion. Junior is a hard keeper.

Of course, Friday  morning rolled around and I hadn't hooked the truck up. Luckily I'd given myself plenty of time. When I went out to hook the trailer up, it was iced over. I had to take a hammer to some parts of the trailer to get latches and doors open. By the time I was finally hooked up and on the road, I figured I'd better take the short route. Hwy 19 is finally open although rough. If I took the Valley Road it would add an additional 15 minutes to the drive. So I opted for Hwy 19.

I. Was. Wrong.

I should NOT have taken Hwy 19. It might be open and might be called a road by some, but I sure wouldn't call it a road. It took just as long to get to the vet's taking Hwy 19 as it would had I taken the Valley Road and driven the normal speed limit. 40mph on hwy 19. That'll teach me.

I decided that I would also take Rain to the vet to have his teeth floated. We've been working on his wavy teeth for the past few years and I wanted to make sure that he wasn't too bad. So I brought both Rain and Junior in to the working area and put Rain into the chute to be worked on.

Surprisingly, Rain did really well. The vet checked his mouth and said "If he were my horse, I wouldn't float him. But since you're here, we might as well take care of those few sharp points." I was thrilled. I was worried that his teeth would be all wavy again. I will admit that I was a bad horse owner and had them check to see when he was last floated. September 2010. We were able to get the waves under control and now are just maintaining his teeth instead of doing serious work. The best part, Rain let the vet hand float him without any sedatives. One less expense. Although I'm a little worried that Rain may not allow a hand float to happen again without a tranquilizer. But we'll see. Overall, Rain got a good grade on his teeth.

Then it was Junior's turn. Junior would NOT allow the vet to look at his teeth. So we had to tranquilize him. Once the vet got into his mouth, he decided that Junior only needed a hand float as well to get a few sharp points. He IS missing a tooth, which happened recently. So overall, Junior's teeth looked pretty darn good. The tranquilizer did it's job and Junior was sleepy for the hand float. I also had the vet take a quick look at him to get his impression on Junior, as far as weight goes. There's no heart murmur, which is good.

I think with Junior's high withers, he really looks thinner than he actually is. I pulled his blanket off, and he looked about the same as when we first got him. I was actually afraid that he'd dropped some weight since coming to the Sanctuary. So, we'll keep him on his grain ration and see how it goes. I'm hoping that maybe he'll eat faster but I think he's simply a slow eater (just like some people are slow eaters).

Once I had Rain and Junior loaded back in the trailer, I went back in to the vets for our little min pin to be examined. That gave Junior some more time to come out of the sedative. But when I got back out, his head was still drooping so I stopped at Mom and Dad's and gave Junior an extra half an hour to come out of the sedative before I hauled him home.

I made the smart move of taking the Valley Road, although that's curvy and winding so the horses had to pay attention while I was hauling them so they wouldn't get tossed around. Oh for a decent road!

So, an uneventful vet visit and I learned just a little bit more about Junior. Now to pay the bill. At least the vet was able to keep the price down.

Rain in December

The past few days have been super busy. Vet visit, hay delivery, extended family Christmas, and now Mother Nature is reminding me that we live in South Dakota.

We've had fog for the past four days straight, which has me wondering what March will be like. If we go back into an El Nino type of year, we are in for one doozy of a winter storm in March. Hopefully I'm wrong. We've had some really warm weather lately.

Last night the weatherman was predicting rain, freezing rain, and then snow for today. I learned my lesson from last Monday and blanketed everyone. I'm short a blanket (and actually I'm stuck using a few junky blankets that do NOT fit). Chaos is the only one without a blanket but he's pushy enough to stay in the run-in shed where everyone else may get pushed out.

I was glad that I put on the blankets when I went out to do chores this morning. It was raining. Although three hours later and there's no rain, just a lot of fog. I thought we were supposed to have rain and then snow later today but who knows at this point. I thought it would be like last week and the weather much worse. I hate trying to predict the weather. Makes it hard to juggle the paying job, plus caring for all the horses at the Sanctuary.

We are supposed to get snow tomorrow and wind. So we'll see if I get stuck on our gravel roads again or not. This winter seems to be perplexing me more than others.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Ol' Blue

You know the saying, don't get the cart before the horse? Well, I've been doing that my whole life. I had horses before I had a trailer, and then I had a trailer before I bought a truck. But it all worked out. I've had my gray stock trailer for years and it's been a faithful companion in all my horse endeavors. I bought the six horse trailer thinking that I would use that more, what with hauling draft horses to the vet. Well, I was wrong. I still use old faithful more than any other trailer.
 

Mike mentioned that the gray stock trailer is about due for tires. And as every horse owner knows, buying trailer tires is never a cheap ordeal. Mike happened to be talking with one of his co-workers about trailers and tires and such. His co-worker mentioned that they wanted to sell a stock trailer. Keep in mind, that both of the trailers are paid for and my next big trailer purchase will be either a brand new stock trailer to replace the gray trailer that's starting to show more than it's fair share of wear, or buy a fancy slant load bumper pull trailer.
 
 
When Mike's co-worker said he wanted to sell the trailer for cheap, we hemmed and hawed on how much cheap would possibly be. I guess it never hurts to ask right? We ended up buying a slightly smaller, and older stock trailer for the price of the tires.

It's anything but fancy but it'll be nice to have a spare stock trailer. Actually, it's a blessing in disguise. I know it's not much to look at but it'll do for hauling horses in a pinch.

If the tires in the gray stock trailer give out before this summer, then we'll pull the tires off the blue trailer and put them on my stock trailer. Gravel eats up tires like a bag of Hershey kisses. But if the tires on the gray trailer don't get chewed up this winter running around for drill team practice, I'll switch trailers this summer. That will give time for Mike to work on the gray trailer and get it back in to working order. We've been limping along waiting for a chance to spend some "quality" time working on the gray trailer. Now with the blue trailer, Mike can spend all summer fixing up the gray trailer so I can use it in the winter time (or I'll pull out the six horse trailer. I just think it's silly to pull a six horse trailer for one horse). :-)

So nothing truly exciting or anything spectacular. But we bought a trailer for the price of the tires. I love scoring deals like that!

Heartland

An interesting read. I am a fan of the show Heartland and was excited when they touched on rescue horses and slaughter (and they touch on it every once in a while)...

https://heatherclemenceau.wordpress.com/2014/12/17/from-movie-set-to-dinner-plates-heartland-horses-dispersed-in-kill-buyer-attended-auctions/


So I'm a little disappointed and discouraged. Many horses need and deserve a retirement home. I only wish the Sanctuary could do more.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Snowdrifts and Winter

The weatherman said we had about four inches of snow. I would have to agree. Unfortunately, we also had wind, which meant drifting. I am hoping that Mike can get out with the snowplow and push snow around so that I don't have to  haul water back to the mares and Junior in four inches of snow. I really don't want to drag water buckets through the snow.

When I went to let the mares and Junior out of their stalls, their blankets were still crinkling. I guess the stalls in the hay shed aren't as warm as in the barn. The horses in the barn all had dry blankets. I'm a little worried about Jim's blanket. It's canvas. The inside was nice and dry but the canvas part was wet. I'll check it tonight during chores and see if I have to swap out blankets. I like having a few spares on hand but I'm running low on spares. Spares consist of torn up blankets that will do in a pinch but can't be used long term...or are someone else's blanket.

This morning I got ready to go to the paying job. Chores took me longer than expected but they always do when I have to stall everyone. Chores normally take 10 minutes (just throwing hay). This morning they took over a half an hour. I hopped in the car and headed on my way knowing the roads would be slick. I was a little worried when I plowed through the first snowdrift but didn't think anything more of it until the next snowdrift loomed ahead. I didn't think it was deep.

I. Was. Wrong.

My finger was on redial until Mike picked up. It didn't take long to get back out of the snowdrift but I'll be avoiding that road whenever the wind picks up. The only problem is, that's the main (and fasted) route to get to a paved road. Some of the other roads are just as impassible as others. Luckily the paying job is fairly understanding but I ended up staying home with our son to avoid getting caught in another snow bank.

Winter has returned. :-(

On the bright side, Mike did go to work (and got stuck in the same snowdrift that I did but managed to get out after a half an hour of digging) and went to pay the hay guy for our hay. I'm hoping that we'll have our six round bales delivered some time after Christmas.

I would love to fundraise for more hay. We got asked to take a mare but without more hay, I can't. And we are currently fundraising for Mayhem's hernia surgery. I have decided to up the anty on the fundraising but haven't gotten everything lined up just yet. So keep checking back for more details!

Monday, December 15, 2014

December Storm

I figured I had just a few minutes before I needed to do chores so I went out with the camera. The boys were not happy with having to wait while I took pictures. Kicking myself for not blanketing everyone. I only blanketed the hard keepers and I should have blanketed everyone. That will teach me for the next storm. 

Everyone is tucked into their respective stalls tonight enjoying their evening meal and staying warm and dry. Such a big change from two days ago.






Mares and Junior

The mares and Junior this past weekend before the storm hit.  The mares decided to join Junior (and steal his hay). 







Junior and his Blanket

Thank you Erin from Head Heart Hooves (http://www.headhearthooves.com/) for giving Junior a blanket. With today's terrible rain, freezing rain, and then snow, I'm sure glad Junior has a nice warm blanket to snuggle in to.

It's still a trial and error to see if we can get the back leg straps on. There's something with his back legs that he wont' allow anyone to touch them (or get near). I thought it was only the left rear leg but apparently it's both legs. 

Once his blanket thaws out, I'll readjust and make sure that the blanket doesn't slip any farther. The freezing rain made all the blankets freeze in place.


I also want to thank Nadine M for finishing up Junior's fundraiser for hay. We are now fully funded for Junior's hay. And even better, just today we found someone selling hay/alfalfa round bales and the guy will deliver for a small fee. We'd have to make two trips (ended up buying six bales because that' what the guy had on hand), so instead opted to have it delivered for a very small fee. Well worth our time.

Now we have to coordinate schedules, something that's a little tough with Christmas right around the corner.








Busy

We've had some crazy weather in the last 24 hours. I'll write more about it soon and post pictures of the herd. We have lots going on and lots to share. But I have the chance to do chores in the daylight, so I'm going to take advantage of this rare opportunity!

Check back later tonight or first thing tomorrow morning for pictures!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Gentle Spirits - Polly

ok...so those that might have read this post already.. I mistook Polly for Farrah...

On the way home from work yesterday, I saw Gentle Spirits Horse Sanctuary heading to Cedar Ridge. I decided to swing by and say hello since I hadn't seen them in awhile. They had a trailer load of horses ready for the farrier. I didn't get a chance to stay for very long or to really hang out with the horses but I did get to meet Polly. The pictures don't do this girl justice.

Oh sure, from a distance she may look like any other sorrel mare but she has a distinct coloring that a camera can't pick up. I didn't get to play with her since there were a few distractions (for me, not for Farrah) but she seemed very even keeled and unflappable even though there were horses in the arena and she was tied between herd mates waiting for their turn to get a pedicure.

I didn't mess with her like I would have liked but even with all the commotion, she seemed to take it all in stride. She is available for adoption and I think whoever sees her for the gem that she is, will be surprised at what a bond they'll have with her.



I know that people are interested in color and would prefer something other than sorrel. But speaking from experience with Ace and now Maverick, these sorrels are diamonds in the rough. All they need is a little bit of polish and they will shine brighter than any diamond.

Haven't not been around Farrah but for more than but a few minutes, I still got the impression that she would take care of her owner. I also expect that she'd also take care of her rider after the bond is established.

So if you get a chance, stop on over to Gentle Spirits and check out Polly (and her sister Farrah). Both are sorrel mares that with a little bit of polish will really shine on the trail or in the show ring.

Still Here

We are still here, just super busy.

Erin from Head Heart Hooves (http://www.headhearthooves.com/) donated a blanket to Junior. I tried it on and it fits perfect. I've been meaning to post pictures so you can see Junior in his new blanket! He looks pretty sharp.

When we had hay delivered, we ran out of room and put some in the red shed. Unfortunately, when we have a normal winter, the snow piles up and we can't get the doors open on the north side (which is how we'd get the hay out). We decided that once the 2013 hay was gone that we'd move the hay. We did that on Sunday. I'd put Junior in his stall to eat his grain and we started moving hay. Mike got six bales in and said he couldn't get any more in. The ice in front of the hay shed was making it impossible to push the bales in. The tractor is too big to fit in the hay shed (not like our hay guy's tractor which can fit in almost any place!)

Mike had me go and look to see if the bales would be ok where they were. Umm. No. I couldn't get Junior out of his stall! He was trapped in there. I'm sure he would have been fine eating his way out of the stall but I wasn't fine with it. So back out two bales go. Then I look and still Junior is trapped in his stall. So out goes another two bales and then I can get Junior out. The only problem is that whoever is in that temporary stall can reach over and devour the entire gigantic bale so now I'm frantically working on that bale.

So, lesson learned. Don't try to put bales in that side of the hay shed! It took an hour to move six bales, only to have to move four of them back in. We're actually worse off than when we started but shhh, dont' tell Mike that.

I was rather disappointed. I'd hoped on Sunday to be able to do chores in the light but with moving hay and the like, I didn't get the chance and had to do chores in the dark. I'm ready for the days to be getting shorter and unfortunately, we still have shorter days to come. Soon the sun will be setting at 4:30pm and there's no way I can get out to do chores before then.

I'm worried about Junior as well. The last few days I've been late getting out to do chores so I've cheated and not grained anyone. I know, it's not good practice but it's been warm out. But I'm throwing hay. I also decided awhile back to stop stalling Junior at night because he seemed unhappy. So the other night, I pulled him into his stall to let him eat and he wouldn't touch his grain. I decided I'd stall him and throw hay. I wanted to keep an eye on him. He devoured his hay. He dove into that hay like he'd never eaten before. So I'm wondering if the mares are pushing him off his food. I also think that his teeth are bothering him. That first bite of grain was like he took the bite and then got turned off from him. I'd soaked it but not very well, which makes me think it's all about his teeth. So I'll be making a phone call to schedule an appointment for a float. Now to figure out how to juggle a vet visit in with all the other day-to-day activities and Christmas.

So much to do and so little time. But we are here and struggling to keep up with the daily grind. I'll hopefully be able to get caught up and post something more entertaining soon.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Can You Help Mayhem?

It's finally time Mayhem get her umbilical hernia surgery fixed. Can you help her?

http://www.youcaring.com/pet-expenses/help-a-rescue-filly-with-surgery/273291

She was born the wrong color, born with an umbilical hernia, and born with a heart murmur. We can't fix the heart murmur. However, we don't care what color she is. She's beautiful in our eyes. Now it's time to fix the hernia but we need your help.

We took Mayhem in to the Sanctuary in 2010 and gave her time to grow and be weaned. However, in 2011 we took in seven horses. Of those seven, five of them were either thin or emaciated (Bo, Dic, Savanna, Sahara, Sir Prize/Jett, Prince, and Flower). We depleted our funds bringing the emaciated horses back up to their correct weights so we couldn't get Mayhem's hernia fixed.

Then in 2012 and 2013 Mike, Garrett, and I all had major medical issues (and not to be over dramatic, these medical issues were near death incidents). So with all those medical issues, our funds were depleted and again Mayhem's surgery had to be placed on the back burner.

Now it's time Mayhem gets her surgery. We are asking for your help in collecting funds. With her heart murmur, I am figuring that we will have a few post-surgery vet visits to make sure that she is recovering and that there are no ill effects from the surgery (or from having to wait so long).

Can you help Mayhem?

The first two pictures are of Mayhem this fall. You can see in the first picture that the umbilical hernia.


 Mayhem is standing behind her momma, Rabbit. Mayhem was supposed to be a blue roan. She turned out identical to her mother.

The following pictures are of Mayhem and Rabbit the day after we brought them home to the Sanctuary. You can barely see the umbilical hernia on Mayhem. But you can definitely tell the straight and neglect that Rabbit went through. Rabbit has some medical issues of her own so we wanted to bring her into the Sanctuary and give her a retirement that she deserved. But she's a different story.




Bliss

I guess I wouldn't say I was in total bliss last night. I wasn't riding a horse or messing with the senior horses. But I would consider it my second best bliss. We had no wind while doing chores, so no hay in my hair, in my eyes, or down my clothes. The horses were all respectful of their spaces and my space. The horses were also very patient and didn't try my last nerves like they'd done the night before. The quiet while doing chores was wonderful. No wind howling through the bare trees.  No stomping hooves to demand grain. Nothing but quiet and with an almost full moon, chores were easy.

The best part about last night, I didn't have to haul water! I'm guessing that's why I was in such a state of bliss. My parents were down watching my son (grandma and grandpa day!) and Mike volunteered to haul water. I was so grateful. I hadn't kept up the night before with the water. And with warmer weather, Mayhem drinks a LOT more water. So I knew I was faced with hauling at minimum eight buckets back. It turned out to be ten buckets filled between four and five gallons full. With Mike hauling, he probably filled them closer to five gallons full, whereas I do just over four gallons. Darn tendinitis gets in the way of so much these days.

Chores still took an hour to finish but I didn't have to lift an arm once to haul water. I'd say that was the best night for chores in a very long time. I won't take it for granted either. I know I won't have a "water boy" again for awhile so I'll take advantage of the opportunities when they come by.

And I found out this morning, best news ever! We had someone donate to Junior's last bale of hay! He is completely paid for on his hay! Now the hard part, finding hay this time of year. I've been searching for hay but nothing local. I'm going to wait a little bit longer but I expect I'll be working with our hay guy to see if he has any available. He's out of the hospital now so it should be easier to negotiate getting hay. Last night I also wrote the dreaded check for the 2013 hay. You're probably wondering why it would take so long to pay for hay that is already gone. Our hay guy prefers that we wait until the next year so that we don't mess up his records. It's a bit of a pain for us but I'll if it keeps our hay guy happy, I'll do it. With all the medical bills and such that we had last year, finding the funds to pay for hay was very tough this year, even with all the fundraising we did. So it took until now to pay for last year's hay. And now I'll be struggling to pay for this year's hay. Luckily our hay guys is really great about waiting for the money but I'd feel better if it was paid for by January 1. Goal for 2016? I am expecting that the 2014 hay will cost about the same as 2013's hay and that was $3,600 (we get a good guy discount).  I may start looking at doing some online fundraising in the very near future to help offset the hay. So keep an eye out for it soon!

Now back to my bliss of remembering chores with no wind and not having to haul water (we had wind this morning and I had to haul water). Short lived bliss but oh so worth it.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Thanksgiving and Needing Help

I hadn't intended on taking a blogger break over Thanksgiving but that's what it ended up being. I didn't even get a chance to do anything Sanctuary related other than minimal chores. We did enjoy a lot of quality family time over Thanksgiving and had to do some extended family activities on Friday. Saturday was gorgeous. We had to run in to town quick to pick up some grain but we were home before the day got away from us. I'd called our farrier earlier to see if he could make it out during the first warm spell we'd gotten since having Junior arrive. Saturday was the nicest day so our farrier came out and pulled Junior's shoes and did a quick evaluation of his feet. I'll post more about Junior on our Senior Equine Care blog (http://seniorequinecare.blogspot.com/).  We did a few other outside activities and enjoyed the nice weather. Then Sunday hit with vengeance and we stayed hidden inside away from the cold. We did make a quick trip back to town to take our son to acute care (he has pink eye). Ah the joys of winter. Monday I stayed home with our son and did some decorating. So absolutely NO Sanctuary work done, no paperwork, no researching, no emails, no nothing. Just feeding horses, hauling water, and doing a quick once over of everyone. I'll spend the rest of this week getting back into the swing of the old routine.

Luckily the weather is supposed to be fairly decent the rest of this week, making life easier. I'm finishing up the last of the 2013 hay so we can move some of the 2014 hay into the hay shed before the doors get frozen on the red shed. We ran out of room so we put the remaining hay in the red shed until there was room. I want to get it moved as soon as possible. Now that the days are SO short, I will start using the hay in the hay barn because there's a light!  When the tornado took out our yard light, we had another one put in. The electric company put it up in a different spot, close to the spot it was originally at. I had no idea and it didn't matter. But now it matters. The yard light is down too low so the light doesn't shine over the hay barn and help shine light on me when I'm throwing hay from the hay shed. If I'd only known! I've been doing chores in the dark (well relatively speaking because the yard light IS working) for a month and I'm already sick of it.

With Junior now in the herd (well, in with the mares), I am dishing out more hay. We raised funds for four of the five bales that we needed (the owner is donating two bales when we get around to needing them). We are still in need of funds for that last bale. But we are also in need of round bales! I haven't been able to find anyone selling hay so  I'm now on the lookout for hay as well.

We did get asked to take a mare. I'd seen her earlier in the year and knew that I would like to offer her a permanent retirement home but now that we have Junior, and not enough hay, we can't take her in unless people want to donate more funds. We'd have to gather funds for six bales. If we can't raise all the funds for Junior, how could I possible raise enough funds for yet another horse. I'm going to see if the owners would be willing to keep her for the winter and then I can open our doors to her in the spring. But we'll see. I'm a little frustrated because this  mare, although she doesn't fit all of our requirements, deserves a retirement. Her body gave out before her age so now she's lame in the front and only in her early teens. She deserves a place to call home where she's not worked and can enjoy being a pasture pet. But I need everyones help!