December 28, 2013


I have been overwhelmed by the response from my last post! You guys are amazing!
And since I had such a response, and in truth am still getting emails and Facebook messages almost DAILY, I wanted to come on here and repost my invitation to join me at my new blog, Tales of the Flying Lady!
It is a private blog, but all you have to do is email me a request to join with a little note telling me a bit about yourself (because it's fun to know who I'm visiting with when I post). I'll send you an invite to join the blog and that should be that!

I hope if you haven't contact me yet, you will because I don't want anyone to miss out on our adventures, and unfortunately, I won't be posting to this blog again, at least for some time. So if you want to keep up with our travels and home time fun in Tennessee, please send me an email!

And this is an open invite, so even if your reading this a month or two after I post it, go ahead and email me! Look forward to hearing from you!

November 16, 2013

Moving Forward

I have decided to get a fresh start in many areas of life, including blogging.

I've started a new blog. For various reasons, at this time it will be private.
I've been setting it up and only gotten one post up so far. It was in the works in my brain for a while, and then I got a random message from one of you a few days ago, that kind of motivated me to get that ball rolling! (Thanks for the reminder that y'all were still waiting on me and hadn't forgotten I exist.)

Private, but I have enjoyed my interactions with all of you through this blog, and I want to have you for friends at the new blog too. I just don't want my life to be an open book to the vast and extensive public right now. But I don't think of my current readers as that vast unknown public. Y'all are blog friends. Even those of you who don't comment and aren't on my followers list, because I hear from you occasionally and you surprise me coming out of the blue like that. Surprise me pleasantly, so please feel included even if you haven't made your self publicly known.

So! If you notice this post, after my long months of absence, and would like an invite to my new blog, please email me at

Or you can send me a Facebook message via this blog's Facebook page. Just look up Between the Fenceposts on Facebook and I believe you can send me a message there. You should recognize the little bird on a wire against an orange backdrop. The same as my "button" on here, so you'll know your in the right place on Facebook.

Through either contact source, I will need your Google email address in order to send you an invite. And if I don't personally know you, I would still like to include my regular readers, but I'd also like to know who you are. So if you don't mind mentioning your name in the email and maybe your general location (for my own curiosity).

And here's my promise: I'm not marketing or selling email lists and I'm not a stalker. I'm going to delete your email as soon as I get it and get the invite sent. So don't worry that I'll use it to start harassing you to buy something or just be weird!
Please return the favor since I just gave out my email address to all of you.

Guess that's that. Sorry to have left you so long. It's complicated and then again not so very much. And I might get around to explaining it all one of these days. We'll see. But if I do, it will be at the new blog, not here. I think I'm done here. It's been a lot of fun here at Between the Fenceposts and I'm kind of going to miss it. But I'm excited about starting new with a clean slate too. And I hope most of you will want to join me there.

Thanks for sharing so many adventures with us here! Y'all have been great friends and readers!

June 28, 2013

Salty Dogs

I meant to share this a few weeks ago, but didn't feel like spending much time on the computer or inside when there was so much going on outside and so limited time to enjoy!

But here I sit in a parking lot in Illinois with time to kill. And I think this is worth sharing because for dog owners there's some good to know information in this story.

There are no pictures. Sorry! I had some sad, forlorn Chinese Cresteds on film, but I'm not going to do battle with my computer just for those few sad pictures. If you don't know what I'm talking about, refer to the previous post.

So, let me set the scene:

We arrive home and it feels so good! Everything in it's place, everything well taken care of. Only two minor problems:
1: there is, after nearly 7 months living in the house, a dead mouse in the trap. The first, mind you, after several years of living with mouse issues, and so I count my blessings, discard of the dead mouse, and feel the blessing of the miracle that I can live in an old farm house and not have a mouse problem. And why is that? I was fascinated but relieved!

2: my kitchen sink and counter is covered in tiny ants, going busily from the cupboard to the back of the counter and disappearing beneath the sink.

Turns out they'd found the sugar bowl in the cabinet above the sink where I keep the glasses and coffee mugs and coffee additives....like sugar!
So I cleaned that up and moved the sugar bowl and anything else accessible to an inaccessible location.

Problem solved! Right?

Ummm...no! If you've ever had ants in your kitchen maybe you know what a pestering problem it is to get rid of them. The little demons persisted in plaguing me for days and days! I had to check the sink each evening to make sure we hadn't left any dirty glasses or anything in it. The rotten little buggers found a way into the dishwasher, where I'd stashed half a load of dishes waiting till morning to wash after breakfast. It was a constant frustration to me!

And since it was around the sink mostly and I have limited counter space for food preparation, I really didn't want to use one of those anti-ant sprays, with the overspray getting on everything nearby. So I was just dealing with them till I could find a natural-ish way to give them an eviction.

I had some suggestions from friends but wasn't having much luck getting my hands on the required materials, and finally in one big gigantic fit of frustration and disgust, I went to the store and bought some Combat ant bait strips.

I put one by the sink up against the back of the counter, and I stuck one to the inside of the cabinet between the dishwasher and the cabinet wall. Two little strips in safe out of reach places, where the ants could get them and no one else could!

And then I had two of my high school friends over for lunch and we had a lovely time and there wasm't an ant in sight, even though I'd put the bait strips out just that morning! I was thrilled.

Visit, laugh, and play with the new baby who was adorable, and then hugs goodbye and I went to the kitchen to clean up and get ready to go out and see if Malcolm needed help. I finished the dishes, wiped down the counter, walked into the living room, and walked right into a heart stopping sight.

Ella, proudly standing on the ottoman guarding her new toy...an EMPTY any bait strip!

The bait was totally licked out and the other two girls were bouncing around trying to get a turn at what Ella had.

I was sick! I was panicked. There was a storm coming, and Malcolm was down the road at the neighbors helping them with the creek crossing at their place, and my dogs were going to die right there in the living room from eating ant bait that I'd foolishly put out instead of some natural ant deterrent.

I snatched up my cell phone and called the vet, the new vet, the very one we'd just had out three days before on a Sunday morning when we thought Fancy was having problems (another disaster story). I called and had no signal!
Next room, call, no signal!
Another room, call, no signal!
And by now I was getting really upset!
I finally flew out the front door onto the porch, closing the door behind me so the girls would be quiet and so I could hear. I finally got the vet on the phone, and proceeded to explain what had happened. And half way through his instructions, the storm broke and I could barely hear him because of the thunder and down pour. But eventually I was able to make out what he was wanting me to do, and so I hung up and turned around to go back in and suddenly realized I'd just locked myself out of the house with no key.

So there I stand on the porch with a downpour and lightning storm between me and Malcolm and my poisoned, possibly dieing as I stand there dogs on the other side of the locked door, near tears of frustration and heart ache, and I heard Malcolm coming on the bobcat.
Which was a relief and a sickening feeling at the same time because I had wanted to get this done before he returned so that he didn't have to walk into our chaos and more stress.

However, I did need in the house! So his arrival was very timely!

Back inside, and the girls are over joyed that we've returned to them! Life is wonderful! They think! No signs of death or serious illness yet! Thank the good Lord!

I scooped up Ella, and since I didn't really know who exactly had licked out all the ant bait, they could have been sharing for all I knew, I called the other two and the four of us hurried into the kitchen.

The vet taught me something very interesting and I think, especially now, valuable for all dog owners to know. So I'm sharing it with you.

If you cram a teaspoon of salt down your dogs throat, they will start throwing up within minutes!
Its a near guaranteed way to get your dog to throw up if you need it to.

And so that's what I did. I took my happy, bouncy little dogs that thought we were going to get a treat or play a game in the kitchen floor, and one by one I held them down and poured a teaspoon of salt down their precious throats.

And it was effective. Ella was first and before I'd finished getting Carlie's dose in her, Ella was already heaving. By the time Paris had swallowed hers, Carlie was starting up and Ella was still going.

I no longer had three bouncy happy dogs. I had three traumatized girls, heaving their guts up, and between bouts looking at me as if I had lost my mind and broken their hearts. And they were breaking mine!

Ella had a full tummy and I think that saved her a lot of discomfort. She only threw up a couple times and after that was fine, though a bit warry of me.
Carlie and Paris apparently were running on empty, and as a result, they heaved and heaved and heaved with little to show for it but slime and foam, and they felt awful and were so upset. It killed me!

There was a mess to clean up obviously. And in her trauma, and also juggling three sick ones, I'd not been able to contain Carlie towards the end and so I had three rooms to clean up, as well as a hallway.

It was while I was cleaning that the vet called me to see how it was going. He was pleased with the results (at least someone was). He also told me that if we'd been in the office, he would have also given them a charcoal paste to absorb any residual poison that might be in their tummies. Well I had some charcoal tablets and he was thrilled to hear that. And so I was instructed to shove a couple of those down each dogs throat.

More trauma.

And then poor Carlie Jean apparently hadn't been done with her vomiting, so I had to clean more up, and then force tablets in her again.

And after that it was a wait and watch game.

By that time it was late in the day. The storm had passed, and shortly after Malcolm came back in. We cleaned up, had dinner, and retired to the living room to watch some TV. By this time Ella had returned to her normal bouncy "the world is a marvelous place" self. Paris was pouting and content to snuggle in the blankets and watch me with a wary eye. But I wasn't worried about her. Carlie Jean, however, was acting very lethargic and shivering, which is normal for her when she thinks she's been mistreated in even the most minor way. She was just not herself at all, and since she'd had some blood in what she'd managed to throw up, and also lost control of her bowels towards the end of the episode, well to tell the truth I was worried. More worried than I tried to let on to Malcolm, because Carlie is his baby.

Later in the evening, when it was time to take them out, I forced her to go with us, and once outside, when she went to pee on Ella's pee spot, because Carlie always has to mark Ella and Paris's spots, and then growled at a real or imagined movement off in the dark, I felt like she was going to be all right. I think she was just really traumatized from the whole event and plus she got a double dose of the charcoal tablet cramming. And the vet had not seemed concerned when I mentioned the blood to him, saying something to the effect that it was probably just from the trauma of so much heaving.

The next day all three girls were alive and well and back to normal and had even seemed to forgotten that their lady tried to kill them the previous day. Life resumed its normal rhythms, I discarded all ant baits except the one high on the counter where there was no way the girls could get at it, and enjoyed the rest of our vacation at home....now ant free!

So here's what I though was note worthy that every dog owner ought to know, because you just can't tell when it will come in handy!

If you need your dog to throw up for various reasons, whether you think it's poisoned or it ate a pair of underwear (as our neighbor shared with us his story of dog retching trauma), pour a teaspoon of salt into the back of their mouths and force them to swallow it. You're pretty much guaranteed instant results. And according to my vet, if the salt doesn't work, a teaspoon of peroxide will do it, and won't hurt the dog. Also you can try mustard, but he prefers the other two first as mustard is extra unpleasant to them, although I doubt anything about the experience can be counted as anything but unpleasant!

I'm relieved to have had this whole situation turn out ok. As I mentioned before, this was only three days after we'd had the vet out for Fancy, after sitting up with her all night in the barn, watching her sweat and strain and panting for breath and giving every indication that she was having this foal...early...and then no results in the morning but no changes either. We had the vet come out and the first thing he said upon arrival was that it didn't look good and that we'd probably lost the foal, and maybe the mare too. After an examination in which he discovered she wasn't even dialated, he changed his diagnosis to "she's uncomforatable and going through the motions cause she wants it over with." Yeah...thanks Fancy for the trauma and the weekend vet call bill just cause your uncomfortable!

Anyway, to say the least the week was rather emotionally packed! But it all turned out ok. And a week later we had three healthy bouncy dogs AND a healthy bouncy foal! Fancy was more comfortable after that, and though my purse was a bit lighter (thanks again Fancy) I was healthy and happy too, and the rest of our vacation at home ran a lot more smoothly and pleasantly, no more drama or trauma!

But I have to say, there is something to be said for being back at work! Malcolm's said before and in this instance I have to agree....
We had to go back to work to get a break!

June 25, 2013

Horse Cuteness Overload

 The day came and we have returned to work. But before I resume travel posts, I had to share one more blog post laden with cute horse pictures.

And the travel posts may still be delayed a bit longer. We got a new laptop a couple months ago and I've been fighting a battle with Windows 8 trying to get my pictures loaded where I want them off the camera. I'm losing the battle so far. It's very frustrating. And I can't access them, or rather I can't figure out how to, in order to upload them to the blog or facebook. I've been posting pics on facebook from my phone, and then saving them from facebook onto the computer where I want them to be located, so that I could then come post them on blogger. It's a pain and it's frustrating and I know I'm not computer savvy and that's the problem. I do not like Windows 8! What was wrong with Windows 7? I got along really well with it and I'd like to have it back please!


Fancy's little man is growing fast, as they all do! At day three he scarred the living daylights out of me by accidentally jumping the water tank. He was running and didn't have his "stop" down pat yet, so when he couldn,t get stopped he just hopped over it. But I saw it coming and fully expected my weekly disaster, which seemed to be the trend this past month. (I'll fill you in on that later, if I can remember)
Thankfully, Fancy gave birth to a natural athlete full of grace and more coordination than I gave him credit for!
We also have come up with a name that seems to be sticking.
Meet Midas!
Hopefully he'll have that golden touch!

I'm leaning back towards thinking he's going to be palomino, and thus the golden name. We will still have to wait till he sheds his baby fuzz in a couple months to know for sure. But either way, I think Midas has stuck to him like glue, cause that's how we refer to him now.

Imagine my surprise and delight when I got an email from Dawn and Gemma's new owner announcing the birth of Dawn's foal....EXACTLY 24 hours after Fancy foaled.
Another colt, and a very unusual color! Isn't he gorgeous though?
And also a comic?
One thing Lisa (his owner) pointed out right away is how remarkably similar his markings are to Gemma. And she's right! Compare this little guy to his big sister Gemma at that age. Just about the only way to tell them apart is the color, because the markings are nearly identical! He's even wearing Gemma's black lipstick!

Speaking of Gemma....

Last we saw her was in October when we handed her and Dawn off to their new owners. Here's a picture of Gemma late last summer in her yearling year.
Lisa has been working with her and started riding her a couple weeks ago. The report is she's very smart, quick to learn, and hasn't even considered a single buck or trick to unseat her rider! She's everything I had hoped she'd turn out to be, so much like her big brother, Sky, in attitude and brains, but with the looks of a super model thrown in.
I'm glad she and Dawn are in such a good home and I love getting the updates and pictures from Lisa.
 I'm in love with her mane and tail, so long and thick for a 2 year old (at least in my experience). I told Lisa she's going to need to braid that main when she rides. Otherwise she'll have a face full of it when they get going good.

We are hoping that one of these days we'll get close enough to their home where we can stop and visit Lisa and Dave and see the girls. I'd really like that.

Back at home, we finally had to pack up and get back to work. We left on Wednesday. We haven't had a chance to get another pasture fenced off at home, so we had to move Fancy and Midas to a new location. I couldn't take a chance putting them in with Sky, since your not really supposed to mix geldings with mares and foals. Sky is just a love bug and wouldn't hurt a fly, but I wasn't going to take a chance that his natural curiosity and pushy affection caused problems.

It was a problem that I'd been pondering, and then a couple days after Midas's birth, we had some visitors, and I realized I might have my answer.
My sister-in-law came over with her girls, and her sister and nephews, the grandparents, AND her parents.....who happen to have some acreage and a few horses and her dad's a horse nut like me! We all had a wonderful visit and the kids (and adults) all loved Midas, of course! Who wouldn't?

Well turns out, my nieces are horse nuts too, and even my sister-in-law is a bit of one. Funny the things you don't know about the people close to you. I had an idea that my older niece was, but I've learned a lot about my family this spring and summer, and the discovery that I have multiple horse loving relatives was a delight!

Anyway, Midas was a star! Everyone fell in love! And when my sister-in-law's father started talking about wanting to breed one of his mares because he'd always wanted that experience, I started to think this might be a good thing for all of us!

So when my first plan didn't work out the way we'd hoped, I called him up and posed the question to him, "would you be willing to board Fancy and Midas for me while we're on the road?"

And of course his answer was yes! Which worked out perfectly!

So while Malcolm and I are criss crossing the nation, Fancy and Midas are staying at their new summer residence, being totally spoiled and loved on!
I told Malcolm after this, we'll have the most imprinted foal under the sun!

It is so nice to be gone from home and know that everything and everyone is being taken care of. I have no worries at all! And while it does make me kind of sad to miss so much of his growing up, just like I had to do with Sky and Gemma, its great to get so many pictures and updates.
We got off to work with a bang, which was tiring, but nice after so many months of slow work. We left Wednesday night and we've already run half way across the country and back, from Illinois to Montana, to Wisconsin and now we're back in Illinois waiting to see what's next!
north unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota

 I hope there will be more motivation to share some travel posts. I think it will help once (if I ever do) I get this picture thing figured out. As long as it's a battle I'm not going to want to blog much. But maybe Windows 8 and I can come to some reasonable terms and get along. We're going to have to, because I'm pretty much stuck with it!

So that's the latest from Redbud Farm and the littlest of the big four leggeds at our place.

I have a story from the little four leggeds too, from when we were home. I'll share that with you later. Heart stopping moments and lessons learned that I think are worth sharing. Stay tuned.

June 12, 2013

The Wait...

...is over!
It has been in the 80's but muggy. And these last few days it has insisted on letting little thunder storms and rain showers pop up at least once or twice a day. Things have gotten soggy again.
Yesterday we had a nice day. When we got up in the morning it was raining which created a delay for Malcolm, who has been working on the truck brakes. So while we waited for the ground to dry up a little, we drove to Dayton to pick up some parts. It's a pretty drive and we're enjoying exploring that town and what it has to offer. It's actually about 5 miles closer to go to Dayton than to go to downtown Chattanooga, and the traffic is MUCH more enjoyable, since we're mostly the only vehicle out there on those two lanes through country.
When we got back home the sun was shining and there was a wonderful breeze. Malcolm went to work on the truck, and Fancy and I went for our daily foot soak in the creek. This time we had company.

He was swimming along when we got in the creek and he kept bumping into my feet. I've never seen one that was mossy! And he was big too! We visited for a little while, but Fancy was unimpressed, so we let him go on his way.

Fancy had other things on her mind. She kept looking around and turning her head to me and resting it against my side and talking to me the whole time. Not her usual creek soaking staring straight ahead bored out of her mind expression. I've been letting her graze in the back yard after our creek time and I decided that she was looking forward to that treat. So as soon as we'd been in the creek long enough, we headed for the yard.
So we went there and where she usually can be "parked" and stay put more or less, yesterday Fancy was going where Fancy wanted to go, and too bad to anyone else who had other ideas. Completely out of character for her.

After a while I got tired of it and needed to go help Malcolm, so Fancy went back to her corral and we worked on the truck and wrapped up our day mowing the yard and finishing that chore in another down pour of rain. We were drenched, but it was good to have that job done, and afterwards the sun broke through the clouds with that glorious sunset lighting, and revealed a beautiful rainbow!

We have been staying up till 11:00 or later, which is totally out of character for us! Lots of "out of character" going on around here! I have no idea why we're staying up that late, because we're both tired! But not tired enough to go to bed earlier apparently. Last night was no different. It was after 11:30 before we turned off the TV and tidied things up for the night. And on a whim I decided I wanted to go out and check on Fancy. I've not been going out at night for several days. But I wasn't quite ready for bed yet and thought an evening walk to the barn would be nice. And I told Malcolm he had to come keep me company.

It had just finished raining, apparently really hard, because it was soggy and the trees were dripping enough to make it sound like it was still raining.

Fancy was out in her corral, even though her stall was open to her, and when she saw us she came over to the fence and was talking to us, and just talking and talking. I checked her and she did look a little bit swollen, but mostly normal. But Malcolm said we might as well put her in the stall. I liked the idea because it's dry in there and her abscesses have healed nicely, but I don't think the muddiness is that good for them drying out. So me and Fancy went over to her stall, her just following because she does that without a lead. And as she passed me and entered the stall I looked and did a double take.

Between the spot where we had been standing and the stall entrance, maybe 10 feet, the sack with a big sloshy water bubble had emerged!

She did a circle of the stall, laid down, and in less than 10 minutes we had a foal sitting up and looking around in dazed confusion.

I don't know what prompted me to go out when we did, well obviously it was God nudging me to go, but I'm so GLAD we went out when we did! The timing could not have been more perfect! We got to watch the birth and everything without sitting around for anxious hours worrying. It was a first experience for both of us and I'm glad Malcolm was with me to share that moment.

It was too dark for decent pictures and besides, I'd not even had time to go back to the house for my camera because everything happened so fast, but I'm sure you can figure I was out there at first light to check on things and wait for the sun to light things up.

And now for introductions!
Here's a new little guy!
It's a boy and we are very pleased!!!!
There is a diamond shaped white spot on his nose and that is all the white there is on his face and most of his neck! This really surprised me!

Fancy's past three foals all had high white legs, as does this one, with the exception of one rear, which is colored almost all the way down.
Which gave him the cutest butt ever, especially with that flashing white tail!

He has a beautiful distribution of color and white! He's just gorgeous!
And on one side he has a nearly perfect circle!
He is very active! He got up pretty fast and only fell down twice. He just hops right up this afternoon and he's in constant motion. He just paces in circles around and around Fancy. And this evening he was trying to pick up a little speed, but there's not quite room for that. I think this one is going to keep her busy!
Thoughts on Color:
Initially I was thinking Red Dun like Fancy. He is lighter in shade but kind of a reddish gold color. However, there's not a single dun marking on him. Nothing anywhere.
Second considered option was palomino. And that's the way I was leaning. But then a couple of friends pointed out that his mane is two colors and palominos have an all white mane. So....

And one of those friends also thought the coloring around his eyes and face was unusual. I do too.

So we will wait and see. If he's anything like his half sister, Gemma, he'll keep us guessing for a while and switch shades of color a time or two between now and later. I do know one thing for sure. He's not the buckskin I was expecting! Not a black point anywhere to be found! Not one hair!

He's a busy boy with lots to learn and explore, and Malcolm and I are both enjoying being one of those things.
It has been a beautiful day here all day long. Muggy, but sunny and pretty and it never rained so it was able to dry up a little. This evenings light was just beautiful. One of those evenings that just takes your breath away.

I am so relieved that the wait is over, that we have a healthy happy foal, that the birth was easy, and that he came in time for us to be able to enjoy him some before we return to work!

Today was a good day!

June 2, 2013

Wrapping up Week One


Sunset over Chickamauga Lake near our home
 This has been a busy busy week! One thing about these longer summer days is that they are longer in literal daylight hours, but in other respects they are shorter.
I like to come inside in the evenings, get cleaned up, and relax for a while. But on these longer summer days we tend to utilize every minute of sunlight, which takes us up to pretty late. And by the time we've gotten cleaned up and eaten a little something, it's time for bed, because tomorrow will be an early morning! Not much time for winding down and relaxing.

But man is it (still) good to be home!

Number one job on the list for this week was the hay. As I told you before, Malcolm got it all cut by Saturday. We had a family reunion last Sunday and hoped the hay would be dry enough by Monday. But things are just a lot more moist down here than they were in Montana. And on Tuesday it was dry on top, but still just as green and wet as the day we cut it underneath.

And so we have now acquired a new piece of farm machinery! This is a tedder!
Down here, everyone tedders their hay before raking. Basically it takes all those neat tidy rows your cut and throws them to kingdom come! It looks like a twister on wheels going through your hay field slinging hay every which way! But by golly! It does the trick! Malcolm teddered in the morning and by that afternoon it was dry enough to rake! (which I forgot to photograph)

The next day, after the dew had dried, we got busy baling.
And like all old (and sometimes new) farm machinery, it was being persnickety. It hasn't been used in a few years, and had some rust. Required some grease and WD 40. But then that got the twine slick, and so all the knots were coming undone. So till we got the kinks worked out, I did some baling...
...while Malcolm walked behind, tying off the bales that didn't want to stay tied.
Eventually he got it to cooperate and function like it's designed to do. And so he got back on the tractor and finished the field real quick. That was a really pretty and proud sight!
The next morning we were out there after the dew had dried to get them loaded up. Picking up square bales is not a fun job. I didn't actually pick them up. Not strong enough to lift and hoist, so I got to drive the pick up around pulling the trailer. But I can tell it's not a fun job!
Dad showed up a little after we had gotten started and between the two men, we had the bales picked up by early afternoon and loaded in the barn.
 We had been real nervous that morning because we woke up to ominous skies and a strong breeze. There was a threat of afternoon thunderstorms and we were dreading that we'd done all this work just to have our bales rained on!
 But as it turned out, God had sent the clouds and breeze to make it cooler. And just about literally as the last bale was tossed into the barn loft for stacking, the clouds broke and the sun and heat and humidity returned. Kind of cool timing!
It was still a hot and itchy and tiring job! We were really appreciative that Dad was able to come help! We ended up with 201 bales. We'll be gone on the road when everyone else is doing their second and third and however many cuttings they do this year. But we'll get one more in before the end of summer. And that should be enough to meet our needs! And we might even sell some. We will see.

 Not much has gone on between haying. I did take some time one day while Malcolm went to pick up the tedder, to cut some bottles for my candle making.

 I'm looking forward to trying out some of my new scent oils.

We've also enjoyed taking note of some of our other farm residents that we didn't know about. We have seen this turkey hen a couple times lurking around the fruit trees behind the house and also in the tree row back in the hay field.
And yesterday we discovered there's a family of ground hogs apparently living in the brush pile by the little hay field behind the house. Two adults and three juniors. And we know ground hogs can be bad news, but for now we're enjoying them. They are funny and now that we've noticed them, we actually seeing them quite often. They are not very skittish!

 And then there's this little guy!
We have been getting a kick out of watching him scamper around the bird feeders, leaping from the ground to the bird bath for a drink, and this afternoon, he actually was on the porch with us. Malcolm was sitting right next to that wood pile and our chipmunk was just sitting there watching. He eventually left for more interesting company.

The girls have been enjoying their trips out onto the porch and patio. Paris especially. It's hard to get her off into the grass to take care of business because pretty much as soon as she hits the porch or patio she flops down in the sun to bake.
The clothes are because the AC inside makes her cold.

We got the pool uncovered so we could get pictures with intentions to sell it on Craigslist. But Malcolm has enjoyed jumping in every evening to cool off after haying, and it's kind of tempting to keep it now. I even got in one evening, though it really was too cold for my taste.
Speaking of pool, we have been spending some fun time with those nieces at the pool. Only they are the ones in it. We just watch from the sidelines and Uncle Malcolm shoots them with squirt guns.

And Saturday was Kenslee's birthday party at the park. She turned three. I didn't get a picture of her because she was here, there, and everywhere! Talk about a wound up little girl! But Ava Grace is still slow enough I can keep up with her! So I did get a fun picture of her discovering the joys of slides!

And between all these things, I've been making regular trips to the pasture to check on the girls.
Fancy continues to grow and is clearly really uncomfortable.
We had a bit of a scare last night. She had developed a bad limp on her rear leg and so I was watching her, figuring it to be a strain or something from climbing the hill, and aggravated by her extra burden. But last night I went out to check and she was laid out flat in the pasture, and showing no signs of interest in getting up. There were other suspicious signs, so I went home to get Malcolm. Of course when we got back to the pasture she was up grazing, but we decided to bring her in anyway to get her on level ground and closer to the house.

She was sweaty around the flanks and breathing hard and kept laying down and straining like she was pushing. I sat out in the barn practically all night. Every time I convinced myself I could probably go in, she would start something new. It was a long night.

I did eventually go in, going back out to check her periodically. This morning there was no change, and since myself and a couple of good horse friends felt like she was giving lots of indications of labor but seemed to be getting know where, Malcolm and I decided to go ahead an call the vet.

At first he didn't give us much hope, but I think he just wanted us to be prepared for the worst. After a more in depth examination, he determined that she wasn't dilated at all and that basically, she's super uncomfortable and wants to have the baby because she's done this and knows that helps. So she was going through the motions in hopes, but her body wasn't ready. Still isn't.

So we continue to wait. But thank God the foal and Fancy are both ok! I was worried sick, literally!

He did discover that her front foot has an abscess on it, even though it wasn't bothering her at all till this morning. But it has ruptured and we have instructions to soak it everyday.

Which we all kind of enjoyed in this humid heat.
It was a stressful morning, so after the vet left, and after lunch with family that came over with carry out, and after soaking her in the creek for a while, I put my pajamas on and have been puttering around in the house. So has Malcolm. He needed the break.

I guess there will be a lot of trips to the barn in the days to come, throughout the day and night. I'm just so relieved that everything checked out ok, but also dreading the days to come of stress and tiredness and not knowing WHEN!

Tomorrow starts another week. We have to work on the truck, pick up Sky from the trainer, and a couple of my girl friends from high school are coming over for lunch one day. It's shaping up to be busy, but in a good way! And hopefully Fancy won't give me more worry and stress than is normal. Because the normal amount is more than enough for me!

May 27, 2013


That has become the most beautiful word in my vocabulary. It sums up so much!

We are home, and there is so much I want to talk about! And today I decided, while I wait for this batch of cookies in the oven to finish, so I can go outside, I'll blog! And hopefully keep it up for a while!

We have been gone for the better part of two whole months! Eight weeks on the road and miraculously we did not kill each other (though there were some touchy moments the last 2 weeks). Truly God was watching over us!

It felt so good to cross that state line and know we were less than a half our from home. I felt like falling out the truck and kissing the ground!

But instead, when we arrived, I just stood in the yard and admired, in awe, the beauty and peace and the flowers that bloomed while we were gone!
I've been telling Malcolm for months now, "I could live here!"

Eight weeks on the road and there is so much to catch up on. Our place is well taken care of. My parents make trips over here nearly every week to check things in the house, pull a few weeds, take a look in on the horses, and absorb some of the peace and tranquility here. And our amazing neighbors keep an eye on things, give our horses lots of love and attention while we're gone, and have even taken it upon themselves to keep our yard mowed. We are truly blessed in so many ways. And it's so nice to know everything it so taken care of.

But still, there are other things that need attention.

We haven't seen family in ages, and little girls are growing up fast. So we will be making up for lost time with them.

My kitchen has missed my presence and activity. I'm working on making it up to the appliances.

My flowerbeds have been attended to by Mom and Grandma, but they missed my admiration. I'll work on giving them extra over the next days.
Our Redbud tree, for which we named the farm, bloomed a few days after we went back to work. We missed it, but Mom sent us a picture. It was magnificent, as expected, and she said it literally buzzed with bees.
It has traded in it pretty lavender blooms for large heart shaped leaves, and it calls to me from the windows of the kitchen, "come sit with me!"
I have promised it that there will be many meals taken under its sheltering branches, and that we will enjoy it's shade on hot afternoons when we take a break for a cold glass of tea. There will be lots of time, and we will be spending a good deal of it with the Redbud.

But first there are things to do, there is a hustle and bustle and pressure felt to get things done. We arrived home Friday afternoon, and by Saturday night, Malcolm had the hayfield cut. First cutting is on the ground and drying.
After a very wet spring that had us pondering how we were going to get hay to dry enough for horse hay, we came home to the blessing of a 10 day forecast of sun, warm temperatures, and low humidity. And the hay is beautiful!!! As we drive around the community we see that everyone is hustling to get their first cuttings in! Pray with us all that the rain holds off long enough to get this baled and put in the barn.
We both have so much we want to do over the weeks to come. We're not sure how long we will be home exactly, but it's for a length of time. It's all up to one lovely lady. It all depends on her, because she's the reason we are here. She's the reason we stuck it out and drug ourselves down the road for 8 weeks with no break, so that we could afford to stay home as long as needed to be here for her big day.
She has 2-3 weeks before she will foal. Hopefully it won't be any longer than that. I can hardly wait!