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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Seeing Spots

Well, my hunt for a horse continues. 

I recently got an email from someone I apparently contacted a while back about a horse.  He told me he has an older gelding for sale.  I got his address and headed over there with not much information.

I got there, and it turns out, it's a huge spotted Appy.  He's not real into people, but he's supposedly broke and safe to ride.  From the ground, I wasn't comfortable, so I wasn't about to try to ride him.  I asked if they had anything else for sale.  He said he has a few 5 and 6 year-old horses ... but they're just green-broke.  I figured I'd look anyway.  Yeah.  That's like going to "look" at a puppy.  Uh-huh. 

This guy was adorable.  He's very friendly, curious, and gentle.  Loves people, and loves the attention.  I am mulling over whether or not I'd like to work with "green broke" or get something really broke broke.  We'll see, I guess.

He's the horse you see first and last in this video.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

October ...

I love October.  The leaves are really starting to get very colorful now, and I will be keeping my camera battery on full charge. 

Went up to a branding last weekend.  I'd never been to one before.  It was very interesting watching the ranchers rope the calves in such a nice, quiet, calm manner, the various loops they use, the different methods, and each with their own style.  I loved how the stock -- both the horses and the calves -- were handled.  Quite different than the rodeo.  And there were no fancy rhinestones on saddles, shirts, hats, asses or anywhere else.  And no one was wearing bright turquoise anything, and no one had any fancy tassels hanging off of anything.  Just real cows and real cowboys.   

Here is the owner of the ranch demonstrating for me various really cool loops.  These loops ... float ... slowly through the air -- almost like suspended animation -- and land very quietly on the calves.  

Once the calves are headed and heeled, they are branded, vaccinated and ear-tagged ... all very quickly, quietly and efficiently.  It was very cool to see.

Back at home, the weather is really really nice right now.  The skies are amazing, the air is getting a bit crisp, the mornings and evenings are chilly, but the days are perfect. 

I took the Sexy Echo for a walk.  Yes, she's now showing off her "girly curlies" -- that is, her girly figure and her lovely locks.

We passed by the sheep on the way.  I know I've been sort of explaining that my neighbor and I built some fencing across the canal to enclose the sheep in so they can chew down the weeds over there, but I don't think I've posted photos.  Here's a visual of where my sheep are now.  (Yes, I only have three left, but my ewe is looking prego...)

We walked down the canal a bit and took a few more photos.  This tree will be a gorgeous bright yellow very soon.  (There are sun spots in many of my photos.  I was shooting directly into the sun on auto and didn't feel like messing with it.)

My neighbor's bridge (and the diva on the end)...

Hey Diana ... what are these?  They look like giant blueberries.  Are they some sort of plum?

We decided to walk over and check on the sheep.  I love this field.  The neighbors rent it out to a farmer who grows mint every year, and it smells great!  It's too bad I can't train the dogs on it.  It would be the perfect place.

The sheep ... were absolutely distraught.

They started jumping up and down, they were so mad!  Then suddenly, they jumped right over the fence and landed ... yup, whodaguessedit ... right in the field!  Echo was annoyed that she had to go all ... the ... way ... out ... there ... and ... get .... them....

(These photos are taken from quite a distance and cropped way back, and shot right into the sun, so the quality is hurtin'.  There's my bazillion excuses.)  The sheep weren't cooperating, so she had to drive them.

And flank all over the place.

And crossdrive.

... a long way ...

... to be able to fetch them back to me ....

... in a gorgeous straight line (across the corrugates instead of with them) ...

... so we could put those incorrigible sheep back where they belong!  Whew!  It was a good thing we were there!  And I just happened to have my whistle AND my camera with me.  Luck-y!

Here's my place on the way home.  There's not much water left in the canal.

I actually cleaned my kitchen this week, floor and all.  Nope.  Not lyin'.  I did it.  Really.  And I went to go clean the floor in the entry way when I noticed what a mess the dog boxes were.  They were full of dirt, and I was annoyed at myself for never finishing off what the contractor started.  So I went to work on it ... grabbed the shop-vac and sucked all the dirt up ... grabbed the sander and sanded down the wood on the bottoms of the boxes so that they were all nice and smooth and clean ... and then put two coats of primer/sealer on them.

That hole right there ... that's a Reese hole.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it yet.  I'm not certified in drywall-patching, and my contractor is nowhere to be found.  But ... I'm going to paint trim tomorrow and hopefully get this room done once and for all.  I have a bunch of cute stuff I want to hang on the walls and would love to get the various cans of paint and crap out of this room and really start using it for what I initially intended using it for.

See?  I told you!

But it won't stay like that for long.  Why not?  Um.  Here's why.

These two make their presence known wherever they go.  They're like Frick and Frack.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Rust and Dust

Worked on my trailer a bit today.  Here's what it looked like back in March when I bought it (which is still what it looked like this morning):

Yeah.  It's a huge project.

So I started sanding away at it this morning.  The neighbor came over and brought me his sander and I eventually went and borrowed his air compressor to blow the dust off as I was doing this.  Mainly what I was tackling was the bad rust spots, sanding them down and putting primer on them so I can eventually paint this thing.

Here you can see the difference between sanded and not.

This was quite a bit of work and took a long time.  The rust seemed to be everywhere:

So here's how far I've gotten.  Not far, but better than it was.

This was an entire can of primer on this back door.  This is not going to be fun.

Wheel before:

Wheel after:

I am buying new hub caps and am not going to try messing with those.  Getting rid of the rest of this rust is going to make my arms fall off as it is.

Saw this little guy.  I imagine it's a caterpillar.  I haven't seen a caterpillar in years.

I went to pick him up and he did this:

He becomes invisible, see?  ;-)

More updates as this project continues.


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sisko Kid

I went and looked at a horse this weekend.  Nice guy.  A little herd-bound, but had some very nice training on him.  Neck reined beautifully.  Stopped on a dime.  A friendly guy and good on the ground.  

Meet Sisco.

The flies wouldn't leave him alone.

Poor guy.  I told him he's a mess.  I decided he was a red roan sorrel dappled overo bald-faced medicine hat paint.  Prove me wrong!  LOL!  A nice big horse ... nice smooth gait.  A nice ride.

I have another couple of horses I'm going to check out.  

Mark and I went to Ontario Friday night.  There was a local band playing, and it was out of the way of Bronco madness here in Idaho.  The bar was very nice.  The band gave us plenty of material to make fun of ... something we're very good at.

Saturday night, we went to THE FARMSTEAD and went through (and got lost in) the corn maze.  Then we headed over to the FIELD OF SCREAMS.  This is very well done and was quite fun.  I highly recommend it!

Next weekend, we'll check out LINDER FARMS with the kids.  For anyone who thinks, "How silly ... how do you get lost in a corn maze?" ... try it.  Especially at night where your sense of direction is a mess.  It was fun.  My feet hurt, as does my ... um ... rear end.  Thanks, Mark, for yet another fun evening!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Tell Me Thursday

1. If you won the lottery (a big one... I'm talking stupid muchos cash) what would you do with the money?

Thanks for reminding me!  I have lottery tickets from last night's drawing ... will have to pull them out and see if I won anything.  I'd buy an island.

2. After winning the lottery would you work a day job? If so, what would you do?

I would be managing my island and hiring workers, etc.  "Jodi's Island" would be one of the finest vacation destinations ever.  Sort of like a Scotland only you wouldn't have to cross "the pond" to get there.  Lots of sheep.  Lots of green rolling hills.  And cool castles.

3. Do you have any auxiliary dogs? Auxiliary dogs are dogs that are not essential to your main purpose (usually tiny, but not always). If you don't have an auxiliary dog what might you choose?

At the moment, I don't.  I used to have the best auxiliary dog in the world in Jag, but I haven't been able to "replace" him.   I am not into kick-me dogs, so little dogs are out.  I love Great Danes though.  If I could afford to feed it, and my house was large enough for one, I'd have one in a heartbeat.

4. Do you have a favorite crock pot recipe (or other recipe) you can share?

Yes!  I just made one the other day off of "Crockpot Girls" on Facebook.  It goes like this.

Pepperoncini Beef Roast
1 beef roast.  Put it at the bottom of the crockpot.
1 package of dry ranch dressing mix.  Pour it (just like that) over the roast.
1 package of dry brown gravy mix.  Pour it (just like that) over the roast.
1 stick of butter ... place it on top of the roast.
1 jar of pepperoncinis ... add the entire jar (juice and all) around the roast.
Cook on low for 8 hours. 

Awesome!  It's beef roast with a kick!  I served it with green bean casserole made with fresh green beans from the guy down the road.  Also made mashed potatoes from his fresh red potatoes.  And a homemade loaf of honey walnut bread.  It was to die for, and I very happily ate leftovers for 3 or 4 days.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Horse is a Horse, of course.

I'm busy distracting myself.  I went to someone's house the other day and bought a bunch of their used tack, so made a nice addition to my collection of stuff.  Got a headstall with a bit and split-reins, two other bits (one with the little rollie thing), a nice suede-lined nylon halter, a cinch, nylon hobbles, and a tie down.  Then I went out to one of the saddle shops and got a saddle stand and a lead rope.  Bought a saddle which will be delivered this weekend.  Apart from little things like brushes, combs, nose band, chin strap, I'm pretty set, I think.  (Yeah, I know ... there's a bazillion other things I'll "need" when I get into this.)

And now I'm looking at horses. 

There are tons of them out there, anywhere from free to oh-my-dog, but plenty in my price range.  The only problem is ... which is the same thing with buying started dogs ... is there's usually a reason someone is selling it.  And it's usually the same reason you'd sell it.  And they try to minimize it.  "Sure, he bucks a little, but what horse doesn't?" (as they adjust their arm cast).  "As long as everything fits him properly and you balance good in the saddle, he probably won't bite you at all."   "Yes, he's broke.  I've ridden him twice now."  "Yeah, she's all ready to go.  She might even have been bred to my donkey!"  "He was bottle fed as a baby.  No, he doesn't step on me or step into me very often.  Respects my space most of the time." 

So ... pick your poison, I guess.  As with any dog I'd get, there's going to be training involved no matter what I buy, it seems.

I'm going to go look at this cute guy tomorrow.

And then on Sunday, there is another young gelding I'm going to go check out and possibly ride if I like what I see -- and the weather holds out.  The most important thing to me is finding a safe, sane horse.  I will be riding by myself at some point, and I want to be able to not worry about it.