Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Christmas Wish List

Was Christmas draws nearer (in only six more days), the horses at the Sanctuary have their own Wish List for Santa. I told the horses that if they wanted Santa to bring presents, that they'd have to keep it under a certain dollar amount (because otherwise, they'd be wishing and asking for semi loads of hay!)

So here's the horses' Christmas Wish List if anyone is interested in helping us put these presents under the Christmas tree.

Mayhem would love brushes to keep her red coat nice and glossy (all usually under $10).

Lace would like some Buteless to keep the aches and pains away during the chill of winter. Her knee and fetlock are really starting to bother her (costs $50 but lasts a month).

Dude would like some Dumor Weight Booster so he can continue to pack on the pounds and be top dog in the herd (is only $20).

Jim would love to have Dumor Senior Feed (or any type of senior feed). He's the oldest resident and deserves to enjoy his warm grain mash every night (Dumor Senior Feed is under $20 but the other brands are right around $20).

Tommy would love a salt block. He prefers to scrape off the salt with his teeth rather than lick it off (salt blocks are around $5 a block).

Skippy would love a Himalayan salt block so he doesn't have to share salt with  Tommy (these salt blocks are a little more spendy than the white salt blocks but are around $10).

Maverick would love some toys. He's destroyed other toys and he's getting bored now that the nights are so much longer (depending on the toy they range from $10 to $25).

Zeke would love Ramona Feed to keep him fat and sassy (this is the only feed not available at TSC, Campbell Supply, etc. It's available at the Ramona Feed Elevator or A Bar K in Sioux Falls).

Brego would like some over the fence feeders so he can enjoy his grain without having to share with the cats (these run about $10 per feeder).

Chaos doesn't know it but he'd really like some dewormer. He may not want it but he'll appreciate it later! It's like getting socks and underwear for Christmas. When you're a kid, you hate the idea but as an adult, you love it! (Dewormers range from $2 to $10 and are always needed even if they don't know they want it)

Rain would love to have some Nutrena Safe Choice Original grain. As the winter sets in, he'll need to be grained to keep his weight up. (Safe Choice Original is around $15 per bag)

King would love some Purina Strategy so he can keep his plump figure. (Strategy is about $16 per bag)

All of these items are located at Tractor Supply Company and many are also available in Campbell Supply, Runnings, Bombgar, etc. So take a peak and see if there's anything you'd like to help put under the Christmas tree for the Sanctuary horses!

Monday, December 17, 2018

Still Here

Man o man has it been awhile! Well, to reassure you, we are here and doing well.

I am just now returning to the paying job which means I'm in front of a computer a bit more than before. All I had before was my phone, which is somewhat easy to update Facebook but impossible to blog.  I'm not sure how well I'm doing in getting back into the routine of things.

I seem to be forgetting more than I would like. But I'm going to blame the hubbub of Christmas and all the kids' activities.

If you haven't been following us on Facebook, well, the horses are doing just fine. I'll have to post some pictures later but they are all wearing their wooly coats, standing in front of the hay bales, enjoying the weather.

We've actually been having some really nice weather the last few days. Temps are in the mid 30s and there's no snow right now. I worry for our pastures, although the bottom pasture is flooded due to all the tiling going on.

We are still getting asked to take in horses but we are even more limited on time so we are slow to take in any more. I'm hoping the new year will be easier and I can figure out the proper balance between the paying job (which is new...I switched right before I went on maternity leave), running around with all the kids' activities, family events, and caring for the horses.

We are desperately in need of volunteers to help with everything. I know when people see "volunteer", they think that they have to be physically here. In fact, all the stuff I need done, is all online. I'm dropping the ball on so much stuff and losing out on opportunities left and right. So I need eyes and ears and a whole heap of help from others right now until I can figure out how to juggle everything.

I really want 2019 to be an amazing year. I have lots of social media posts to share but still need to get there.

But for now, just wanted to say HEY! We are still here and to say, we'll be back shortly with more updates.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Welcome our Newest Resident

There's a new member of Borderlands Horse Sanctuary. Please meet my son, Graydon. He was born September 20th, ten days earlier than planned and a week earlier than scheduled. Everything went well, although I was surprised that the doctors and nurses didn't seem to take me serious when I said I was in labor. Apparently having had two babies prior didn't hold any leverage.

But all is good. I blamed Hurricane Florence. Actually, the Tuesday and Wednesday prior, we'd had lots of rain. I had a feeling that the rain storms would bring my baby sooner. I thought maybe he'd come Tuesday or Wednesday but instead he arrived Thursday afternoon. So I was half way right in thinking that the storms would bring my son sooner than expected.

We've been fairly quiet at the Sanctuary since then. There's still so much to do but there's so little that i can do at this point. I'm restricted to doing what I did before I had Graydon, although the doctors didn't realize I was doing way more than I probably should have. But I'm taking it fairly easy and doing what needs to be done but nothing extra. 

We've had requests to take in horses but this is the reason why we have been closed to intakes. I'm not going to handle horses that I don't know. I barely handled our Sanctuary horses, there's no way I was going to handle horses I had no history on and risk getting hurt. Because I was "advanced maternal age" I was taking everything with as much precaution as needed.

We won't be doing any intakes for a bit longer until after I've healed a bit  more. This is my second c-section but I'm still taking it slow. I'm just under three weeks out so still taking things easy. I was told the other day that I was doing pretty well for having had a c-section. I don't really have much to go on. The severe and excruciating pain I went through with my first is all that I have to compare the second two births. Nothing will ever compare to that experience.

So for now, this is where I am, snuggling with my son. 

We are headed into winter faster than expected. There's snow in the forecasts to the west of us (by just a few miles) and we've been having rain for the past three weeks But because I'm the sole caretaker of the horses, I'm doing the best I can to keep the horses comfortable. We have hay in the pens and have given up thinking the pasture will feed the horses. They are still allowed to graze the pasture but the hay is now a permanent item in the pens until next spring. 

I may continue to not be around much. I'm still on Facebook more than I want to be so if you want to catch up on the latest, check us out there. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Taking a Break

You may have noticed a lapse in blogging or any other posts (unless you're on Facebook). We are going to take a short hiatus from the blog (and possibly Twitter). We will still be on Facebook sporadically but the blog will be a bit quiet for the next couple of weeks.

No worries, nothing is wrong. I'm switching positions at the paying job, my medial issues are flaring up so I'm not able to do nearly as much as I'd like, and the days are getting dreadfully shorter.

I don't expect to be back on to post again until the beginning to middle of October.

We are also still closed to intakes. The Board of Directors and I will reconvene at the end of October to re-evaluate opening our doors to a deserving senior in need of a soft landing.

Unfortunately our doors will remain closed for as long as I stay silent on this blog. It's not ideal but that's just how it's going to have to be for a little bit longer.

If you need anything, please check us out on Facebook as I'll try to stay a bit more up-to-date there.

Until then, Happy Fall!

Hurricane Florence

Our hearts go out to those in the path of #HurricaneFlorence.

For those that know me, they know that I hate storms (of any kind). I freak out over the smallest storms and as I get older, the freak outs get worse. Of course having two tornadoes in the past five years (one that barely missed the Sanctuary this summer), I am a bit more intimidated by Mother Nature's fury.

I pray that all can escape unharmed and that no one (two legged or four legged) is left behind to try and withstand the forces of nature.

I wish that we were closer to offer a safe landing for those that need to escape. Unfortunately, all we can do is offer up prayers that all will stay safe during this stressful time. You are in our thoughts and prayers as the #HurricaneFlorence nears.

Thursday, August 30, 2018


I haven't been watching FB sale ads or craigs list sale ads. I haven't really been looking because we are turning away horses. Luckily we are unknown so the amount of times we say no is few and far between most times but every "no" from me seems like a direct hit to my consciousness. Is my "no" equaling a death sentence? Is my "no" going to make that horse suffer? What will the consequences of my "no" mean?

Yet those shouldn't be the questions that run through my head. Those should be up to the owner but in reality, those are the questions that still run through my head every time.

I did happen to look at a local auction sales report (which I haven't done in a while). Now is the time people are getting rid of horses.

LOOSE SALE - Loose horses sell first. The top 10 Loose horses averaged $1260 with the top Loose horse, a 9-year old black kid broke gelding selling for $1925. All loose horses are sold as is but we encourage all customers to be honest and call any soundness or bad habit or health problems on their horses consigned to the Loose horse sale. Loose horses are sold in the order delivered to the yards. Friday afternoon delivered horses sell first. (1 PM to 6 PM) If you loose horse is registered, bring papers to gate at time of delivery and attach a brief note to the papers about the horse . If not registered you can submit a brief story on the horse on separate piece of paper or our staff will jot down notes on the horse for the auctioneer -( if bred or open., soundness, riding ability, etc) Loose horses sell in the order unloaded and delivered to the yards. Unload loose horses on WEST end of the yards. Information on your horse will be taken down at that time by our yard staff. Buyers are not allowed in the Loose Horse Alleys . Loose horses go straight from the trailer up the alley to sale ring and they sell fast and is. If you are not a seasoned buyer, it would be best for you to shop for a horse in our Ride in sale and attend the sale preview and visit with the Seller of the horse. Do your home work to see if the horse will fit your riding program.

I hate reading their notes. It turns my stomach. I wish I could do more. I wish I could step up and help. I wish that me saying "no" didn't mean that these horses are forced to go to auction.

Sadly, at the moment, my hands are tied with how many we can handle. My health has hindered me this past year but it still doesn't help that I'd be saying "no" no matter what. I know what we can handle and right now, we sort of have to be running on bare bones for the number of horses at the Sanctuary. Do I like it? "NO"! Do I want to continue with minimal numbers? "NO". I want to open our doors to deserving horses. I want to say YES! I want to welcome these old warriors with open arms and watch them let down from a life of work and see them relax into retirement. It's absolutely the best part to watch these seniors realize that they aren't going to be asked to be worked every day. That all they have to do is eat, sleep, and relax.

But right now I have to say "no" and it breaks my heart. And then reading the Loose Sales Report from August churns my stomach and I get knots. I don't like it. I want to get these horses before they go to auction. They deserve better than

 " Sell the easy, no hassle Loose horse sale way if your short on time."

You're not selling a car or an inanimate object. You're selling a living being. How is it that selling a life is so unimportant? I understand being short on time but not finding the right home? Well, that would be like trying to sell my parents off to the highest bidder or just dumping them off with some poor unsuspecting soul who has no clue about their ailments.

I guess its' just this time of year that really gets to me. Watching all these hard working horses (ranch horses, camp horses, trail horses, etc.) spend all their summer working and then get dumped at an auction and enter into the slaughter pipeline.

I just wish there was more the Sanctuary could do.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018


I promise I will post all of the #HappinessHappens posts that I've been posting on Facebook. But I need some time to catch up on everything. Life has been more of a blur in the last two weeks than ever before.

From birthday parties, to camping adventures, to school preparation, to fencing fiascos, I'm pretty well tapped out.

I'd divided the pasture this summer and we opened the bottom up before we left for vacation. When we came back, I noticed they were in the wrong pasture. I'd pulled them all in to the drylot thinking I could do a quick fix once I felt better. I finally walked out there Sunday night and had to give up on that idea. They'll have the entire pasture for the rest of the summer/fall.

Someone ripped a dozen of the polyposts right off at the stake and rolled the wire right up on itself. They then continued to tear down the rest of the fence along that side of the temporary pasture and drug it through the pasture for me to never find again until I mow. Then they promptly took down another two fence lines so it's a disaster. My only hope is to save what little they didn't damage and hope that we can reuse it again some other time.

Apparently temporary fence is no longer allowed. I am going to have to get serious about real fencing instead of putting up temporary fence. I'm not sure when we went from having everyone respect fence to no one respecting fence. I used to be able to have them in on strand of electric and now, I have them in two strands of solid wire electric and they blow right through it.

I'd really like for them to stay off the top part of the pasture so that they don't burn it down but at this point, I'm unable to do much about it. I was practically sick by the time I walked back up after seeing all that they had destroyed.

And to make matters worse, Lightening is dead lame on his right rear leg. The problem is, I can't do anything about it to even see what's wrong. There's heat right above the hoof but I can't actually check to see if there's something in his foot. I can't bend over even when he's tied and I can't move fast enough if he decides to knock my head off. And of course there's the whole standing back up without passing out part. Ah, medical problems. Gotta love them. Hopefully I can beg for some help tonight and have someone look at his foot. Otherwise, there might be a trip to the vet, yet another expense after yet seeing the bill for Farley, who seems to be back to his normal self.

Sadly, I think there will be less blogs and less social media in the next month. I'm still around and I'm still online all the time but I don't seem to have much positive to talk about as of late. It's all i can do to keep my  mouth shut these days. It'll all be better in a little while (probably after about 12 hours of sleep) but until then, it'll be hit or miss as far as how often I post.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Be An Angel Day

Today is Be An Angel Day.

Would you like to be an angel for one of our deserving senior horses? Would you like to make a difference in a senior's life? Become an angel today! Become a monthly sponsor or a one time sponsor. Every dollar counts towards keeping our senior horses happy and healthy.  It makes a world of difference in the lives of the horses.

Short on cash and can't donate? Become a volunteer at the Sanctuary. There's always plenty to do at the Sanctuary. There's horse chores and maintenance on buildings, fences, and all kinds of other stuff to keep the Sanctuary up and running.

Aren't handy with a hammer or are uncomfortable being around horses? No problem. We still need you! We need volunteers in helping spread the word about Borderlands. We have a number of programs we'd like to get up off the ground but with so very little man power, those programs have been put on the back burner. We'd love your help in bringing them forward and making a difference in the world.

Are you an introvert like the founder and executive director? No problem! We still need you! We need help with our social media and web. We have plenty of online activities we'd like to pursue as well but again, not enough man power to focus too much attention on it.

There's something for everyone! So even if you aren't a direct angel to a specific horse, you can be an angel to the Sanctuary!

Consider being an angel today!

If you would like to donate and become a monthly sponsor or provide a one time donation, you can do so through paypal at or send checks to

Borderlands Horse Sanctuary
26160 457th Ave
Humboldt, SD 57035

Or, do you want to be an angel and have an idea that will help promote the Sanctuary? We'd love to hear from you on how we can make the Sanctuary better!

Won't you consider being an angel today?


Wishlist Wednesday - Rain Sheets

Today's #WishlistWednesday item is for rain sheets. Why rain sheets in the middle of summer? Fall is around the corner and we want to make sure our seniors are protected against the chill of a cold rain. You can find them anywhere and in any size or shape (or condition). We aren't picky.

We went onto and found a bunch to choose from. Trust me, we aren't picky. Just happy to have nice, dry horses during the wet spell that comes before winter.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Vacation Prep

So I mentioned in my last post something that touches a nerve and I figured I might as well discuss it.

Last week we went on our annual vacation. Because I have small kids, my first focus is on them and then the horses. Don't get me wrong. The horses' care is taken care of but the extra stuff slips to the wayside when my kids' stuff comes up.

I want me kids to have every advantage that I had growing up. That means vacations, camping, being gone from the Sanctuary.

What rubs me the wrong way is the offhand comment "Well, that's nice. Wish we could." or other comments similar. It actually makes me see red.

What people don't see are the hours of work that goes in to getting ready for us to be gone, even if it's only for a day or two. We don't have volunteers. Since I'm the sole caretaker, I am responsible. So when I ask someone to look in on the place, I want to make sure that my caretaker/volunteer has to do minimal chores. But that means hours and hours of moving horses, filling water tanks, checking fence, etc. It means hours of work and in reality, it means weeks of prep. And because I know for the most part when and where we will be going on vacation, I plan months in advance so that we'll have adequate pastures so everyone stays happy.

We don't just, on a whim, throw some clothes in a bag and hit the road. We have horses and dogs and that takes time to prep for being gone. It doesn't matter what time of year either.

So the next time you hear that we are going on vacation, please refrain from saying "oh that must be nice, wish we could go on vacations" or "you guys are always camping or not at home", please keep in mind, we've busted our butts to make it possible. We refrain from putting but minimal work on the caretaker and want to keep it that way.

If our young are supposed to be our future, than I want to continue to ensure that my children have the same opportunities that I had growing up. That means being gone from the Sanctuary. It means being on vacation. It means long nights after the kids go to bed to get everything ready. It means cutting our vacation short to make sure that all the chores are done before we head out.

It makes it tough to stay focused on the Sanctuary when we aren't around but my kids come first and I want them to be as well rounded as I am. That way, if they take up a passion as strongly as I have, they'll feel as though they too can change the world and make a difference.

So maybe next time, instead of saying "gee, wish we could go on vacation but we can't." offer to help. I'll gladly repay the favor and help out if/when you're gone but dont' sit on a high horse and tell me you can't when I make every sacrifice to make it happen. There is a give and take in everything.

My kids are our future. I want them to be passionate about something, anything. It doesn't really matter. Let them be one of the few who want to change the world and know that they can make a difference. But to do so, they need to see the world and that's what I'm trying to give them. And to do so, there's hours and hours of work. It simply refrain from having to go into detail about the amount of work done in preparation for showing my kids that they too can make a difference in the world.


Life has been a blur lately. Not even sure where to begin. In the past 11 days, I've had 1 day where we were home in the evening. Otherwise, we've been on the go with family and kid activities. It's a bit hard to squeeze in anything other than standard chores at the Sanctuary. In the next 10 days, I'll be home 1 day without having to do extra running. No wonder I'm exhausted.

I don't want to overdue it either. I had to spend a couple of hours in the ER last Thursday and I don't want a repeat of that. Nothing to worry about but my doctor wanted me to be seen by someone else instead of diagnose me over the phone. I think it was a combination of things, including all the smoke that we've been dealing with. Luckily only Mike and I have been affected by the smoke that seems to be staying in the area from the Canadian fires.

We did go on vacation last week. It was a much needed vacation and is our annual vacation we go on every year.  I've missed it only once in the past few years and that was when my first was born. I think the only other time I missed it was that we as a family decided to head east instead of west (and that'll never happen again). We've been going to the Black Hills every year in August since I was 5. So almost 35 years of tradition and I'm a stickler for tradition. We go because it's tradition (and I need it and love it).

But it does mean a lot of extra work before that. I'll blog about that later because there is a bit of an irritant in me going on any vacation or doing anything "fun" as people seem to see us do.

Besides the constant running, poor health, vacations thrown in with all the extra prep work, I'm switching paying jobs. Even if I wasn't switching jobs, the current job has a huge review that's going to keep me busy until I officially transition at the end of September. But the new job has me hustling already on projects due by the end of this month. So I'm trying to juggle two jobs, taking care of kids, both kids going to school this year (and all their activities), planned vacations that have been on the books for years, and day-to-day care of the horses. Never mind that there's a few things I'd like to be working on but there's no time.

I need to be working on paperwork for the Sanctuary at night but I've been too exhausted in the evenings and if I don't take care of myself right now, I'll find myself back in the ER and then we'll really be in trouble because Mike only knows what needs to be done when I tell him. He went out last night to drop a bale into the drylot because the horses took down the pasture fence. It'll take a solid two hours to get everything repaired but we ran out of time yesterday before the flash flooding and storms rolled through.

I have so much I'd like to share but I can't seem to find the energy right now. Hopefully in another couple of weeks I'll be able to perk up and not have as many stresses. Fingers crossed.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Getting Behind

The last week has flown by. I'll have to recap on our #HappinessHappens later when I'm done catching up with everything else. If you can't wait, check us out on Facebook (at least I'm sorta keeping that up to date).

The paying job is keeping me hopping. I don't expect that to change until the end of September. It makes it difficult to get anything done around the Sanctuary but I guess that's just how life goes.

August is typically a busy month for non Sanctuary related activities. I'm hoping that I can get a few things done even with being under the weather a lot these days. In fact, the other day my back pretty much gave out and I was stuck on the floor. Those old commercials "Help I've fallen and I can't get up". Yup, that was me the other night. I had to have Mike come in and pull me up off the floor because I couldn't move. Oh for the days of being young again.

Everyone is pretty much hanging out and chilling these days. I need to open the very bottom of the pasture at the end of the week. I'm not really looking forward to it because the creek is still full of water. Usually it dries out by this time of year but with the wet summer we've had, it's not going to happen. But it also means that I'll be pulling the Shoo Fly Boots off everyone. I'd rather not have to but if they are going to be walking through a horse length of water that's knee deep, I'd rather not loose those expensive fly boots. We'll see how it goes for the first week or so.

We've been lucky in not having super hot temps and I'm very thankful. I can handle low 80s and the horses dont' seem to mind either. We are definitely having a weird summer. I'm keeping track of fog and going to see if the old wives tale of 90 days from fog is rain/snow. It used to work when we were in an El Nino but now days, that theory doesnt' really work. But I'd rather be prepared than not. I'm already two months behind. I need to start prepping for winter ASAP but every time I think I can, I am sick or the mosquitoes come out in full force. I guess we'll just see what happens.

I can't even push Mike these days to get stuff done. His paying job is pushing him even harder so there's been a lot of outside stress here at the Sanctuary.

Add to it that we are a bit on pins and needs with our beloved Farley dog. We thought he had a stroke last week but treated him for a severe ear infection. We have hope that it's an ear infection but I think our vets are a bit more guarded. But it means that we have to keep a super close eye on Farley. He's gone from an outside farm dog, to an inside lapdog in about 12 hours. But if he does have a stroke and it's super hot out, we can't leave him out there so now he's become a big fuzzy shedding black lab. Everything is covered in fur these days but I guess I will let it go. He's 3 months shy of being 15 years old and he's been our loyal companion for 13 of those years. You don't throw away 13 years of loyalty and love over a little bit of hair.

So back to the paying job to try and keep my head above water. Check out our Facebook page. I'm trying to keep the #HappinessHappens days updated there and I'll have to come back later and update it on here. So far behind. Anyone want to help so I'm not as far behind?

Friday, August 3, 2018

Happiness Happens Day 3

#Happiness Happens Day 3. I am happy to walk out to the pasture and be able to call the herd in for the night. I'm also happy that they each want to see me in the morning before they head back out to the pasture. It's such an amazing feeling to know that they each want to say hi before heading out for their day of grazing. Warms my heart and makes me happy.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Throwback Thursday - Feeling Nostalgic

I'm feeling nostalgic. Maybe it's the upcoming loss of Farley (on the heals of losing Junior), but sometimes doing the Throwback Thursdays is painful for me. It's about the end of August or first of September that we lost Thor (and Queen). That was about five years ago. Thor adored Queen and they both went down hill about the same time.

When I look at this picture I remember Thor, but I also remember and realize that this the date/timestamp on the picture indicates the day we lost Joe. Joe was Thor's friend and companion from the time they were rescued at auction by another rescue. Hard to believe that Joe has been gone for eight years already.

There's been so many losses to the Sanctuary but that's what a Sanctuary for senior horses has to face on an almost daily basis. What is the life quality of each living being? Are they having more good days than bad? Although we have a Board of Directors, the final decision comes down to me.

Sometimes I feel like the angel of death. But I know that if I didn't step in, no one else would. But it's still difficult some days.

So today's Throwback Thursday is to days gone by. Remember to hug your loved ones, tell them you love them, and spend an extra five minutes with them. Life if hectic but remember to take time out to spend time with your loved ones because one day, they won't be around.

Happiness Happens Day 2

#HappinessHappens Day 2: Today's Happiness Happens is for fly masks. I dug out about half of what we need for fly masks Monday night. The flies have been bad all year but now that it's August, they get visious knowing that the end is near. I want to make sure the horses are as comfortable as possible.

Now to find the other half dozen that we need to keep the entire herd comfortable (and to remember to always remove them at night so that Maverick doesn't pull EVERY fly mask off  and stomp on them. I guess he was jealous that he didn't get a fly mask).