Merry Christmas to all...

Friday, December 25, 2009

If you have never seen this before it's spectacular - Enjoy!

Amazing Grace Techno - Computer Controlled Christmas Lights from Richard Holdman on Vimeo.

The turkey's in the oven (and there's another on the couch :o) So I'm off to bake a Chocolate Turtle Cake for dessert (mmmmmm).

 The horses were all feeling froggy this morning, bouncing around like two year olds on Christmas morning after a stocking full of candy :o) Why?
Well, because...
<-- Look! Look! Look We finally had a visit from Jack Frost; I think he got lost trying to find us this year.  This has been the strangest winter thus yours way off the mark?

So what do you get for a herd of horses for Christmas anyway? Well, I have to say that they are fairly easy to please and a snap to shop for...
(and don't worry, we wash them well and cut them up before handing them out at supper).

Woo!  Yummy :o)

Um, I would like to be able to say that the following photos are a direct result of consuming too much holiday Eggnog on my part, but since I don't drink the stuff I guess I'll just admit to a personal problem with random silliness...

The confused looking horse in the background is none other than Miss Sarabear, who was wondering what on earth we were doing - particularly since Rina and Taya actually put their heads down for me to put the earmuffs on them (er, I guess that makes it a tad obvious that this is not exactly my first time being slightly silly...)

Don't forget the REAL reason for the season... 

Happy birthday Jesus!

Rain Rain GO AWAY

Saturday, December 19, 2009

..And don't come back for days and days!

If you have been watching the weather (or experiencing it), you'll know that we have been hit with record rains here in the southeast; flooding is rampant.  The horses are miserable, and every bit as cranky as we are at the current state of sogginess. Thankfully, the house in the photo below is not ours...although we have standing water here too, it is not at flood stages (except for the Moo Crew's stalls, that is, which are now ankle deep in water). Since the horses are only in the stalls twice a day to eat, it's not a complete disaster (it sure would be miserable if they had to stay in there though).

  Happily, Rickey has found someone that owns a dump truck and may be able to help us get some dirt; of course we have to wait for it to dry up enough for him to get in there...otherwise he'd just get stuck (kind of like the farm truck did last week when we dropped more hay - took us an hour and a half to get it out...grrr :oP

The horses do like to play in the rain, especially when the temperature drops.  The cooler temperatures not only give them lots more energy, but the running and jumping around also helps them to stay warm.

The photo below turned out so well, I ended up listing it as a print in my Etsy shop.  I entitled it, "Pinging in the Rain" after one of my favorite old movies (plus it was a really bad pun, which just I love :o)

Of course after the pinging, comes the rolling...

Woo-Hoo! Today is Saturday, and Here comes the sun....HOT DAWG!!

A Note from the Girls:

Not only is there sunshine, but Mrs. Ladyperson [Jen] let us in the riding area where there is Winter Rye Grass coming up.


So tell me, how's the weather at your house? Have you had oodles of rain or snow? Or did you manage to miss all the fun (sarcastically speaking, that is :o)

The Sarabear Chronicles: Part III

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Mean Girls

Well Miss Sarabear may be settling in okay, but it seems that some of her pasture mates have opted to stage a protest.  Rina, in a bout of teenage drama, has decided that Sara's presence here is unacceptable and ruining her life. Really.

Rina has a very large personal space, and gets very cranky when a member of her herd trespasses in said space.  It would seem that Sara missed that little tidbit of important information, and had the misfortune to wander just a teensy bit too close to her new leader.

Unfortunately, when Rina explained this egregious error in no uncertain terms [photo right], Sara compounded the problem by rather desperately lashing out in self-preservation before fleeing the scene. Uh-oh: contact. Houston we may have a problem...


To say that Rina was put out by Sara's audacious behavior would be somewhere along the lines of calling a backhanded slap to the Queen of England "an unfortunate incident" (you know, the understatement of the century).

Rina has finally stopped chasing Sara at 5 minute intervals, and has opted to remind Sara of her place only periodically and at a much slower speed.  I have also noticed, however, that this is now done from a much safer distance :o)

Now that Rina is offended by Sara's presence, Lady [Photo right] has decided she feels exactly the same way. Hmmm, can you say brown noser?? 

Taya only makes ugly faces at Sara when Rina is looking, otherwise she is pretty much ambivalent. She is pleased, though, that she is no longer the resident peon and has been spotted practicing her important new status by butting in front of Sara at the water trough every chance she gets. 

 Seems Bella doesn't really care one way or the other either, except to be happy that Rina is no longer chasing her around the haypile.

Ahhh well, such is the life when you're a horse.  I think it's time for a nap...

The Sarabear Chronicles: Part II

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Joining the Herd  Oh the Drama!

With the girls tucked safely in their stalls, introductions were made all around before walking Sara around the perimeter of The Girls' pasture.  Photos below from Left to Right: Lady and Bella, Rina, and Taya. Um, apparently DD hasn't quite mastered the concept of holding the camera completely still when taking photographs...

Shadow and Cinnamon (Photo Right) were the first of the Moo Crew members to arrive at the fence as we headed up the hill with Sara in tow.  WOO! - Who is that?? Haaay, she's kind of cute...  

Of course Shadow (a.k.a. Señior Studmuffin) developed an instantaneous infatuation with the pretty new arrival. 

While Cinnamon quickly lost interest, Shadow remained at the fence and quickly struck several of his very best studly poses (Photo Left). In an added attempt to impress the new love of his life - who was completely oblivious - he arched his neck over the fence and let out an itty bitty whinny. Oh the shame of it... Sara was distinctly unimpressed with his machismo...(of course it may just have been his sissyfied whinny that failed to wow her :o)

After turning Sara loose, we let the girls out of their stalls.  Everyone raced around madly for a few minutes, then settled down to munch hay.

As The New Girl, Sara was not exactly warmly welcomed at the hay although Taya finally agreed to share a bit of hers. 

Rina, Lady and Bella ultimately decided to pretend that Sara did not exist in their little world. Although Bella periodically cast surreptitious glances Sara's way, she made no offer of friendship which surprised me. Remember her being riveted at the fence?

Unfortunately, Shadow seemed to be experiencing a rather extreme case of denial. He continued his attempts to convince Sarabear of his overwhelming manly appeal by executing his very best trot in large circles by the fence; while periodically peeking at her to see if Sara had fallen head over hooves for him yet.

Sadly, she hadn't. Poor Shadow... :o\

Stay tuned for the next installment: Mean Girls

The Sarabear Chronicles: Part I

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Our newest and final resident, Sara (a.k.a. Blue Seranade, a.k.a. Sarabear), was donated to the farm last month.  Her owner was selling her other horses, but due to Sara's abusive past wanted her to go somewhere she would be well cared for and understood. Sara arrived here safely on a weekday afternoon. Thankfully, this gave her plenty of daylight hours to adjust to her new surroundings.  She unloaded in a big hurry, but since it was a four hour trip to get here we could hardly blame her. She was a bit nervous at the change of scene, and let us know by snorting softly several times as she looked around her new environment.  Even so, she was a perfect little lady as we made our way to her temporary quarters. 

Something that I found interesting was that one of the shippers referred to her nervous snorting as "An Arabian thing", which surprised me. It's not a breed trait at all, but simply an expression of equine anxiety. A precursor to those frantic whinnies, if you like, should the stressful situation escalate.  Shadow, our resident weenie, snorts at things on a regular basis. Have you ever heard it before?

We walked Sara slowly around the area we had fenced off for her so she would know exactly where the boundaries were.  Initially, she was more interested in the grass than anything and spent the first 30 minutes or so with her head greedily buried in it (yum :o)

We left her alone to acclimate, but hung around outside for a bit to make sure that she was settling in, and to make sure the returning school bus (next door) did not cause her to have a coronary...thankfully, it didn't. The bus drivers are required to "bleed the brakes" which is super loud (although it doesn't last long).

The Girls had been at the top of the hill initially, but hot-footed it downhill to see what was going on.  Rina, Lady and Taya decided fairly quickly that Sara was "a nobody" and should be completely ignored and thoroughly snubbed.  The threesome immediately returned to the hay pile at the top of the hill, with noses and tails haughtily in the air.  Bella however, who is the loner of the group, turned out to be absolutely fascinated with her new neighbor. 

Apparently it was mutual, as the two of them spent an entire hour completely transfixed and staring at each other across the fences, which I thought was pretty funny. Sara eventually went back to chomping away on the grass, but Bella continued to stand and stare until it was time for supper. Maybe she finally found herself a friend. Wouldn't that be nice?

Watch for the next post: Joining the Herd

To God I give thanks

Thursday, November 26, 2009

For: Jesus, family, friends, freedom, food to eat, a roof over my head, a car to drive, a steady job, a wonderful church...

What are you thankful for? 

♥ Psalm 37:4 "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." ♥

I am also very thankful to be blessed with the Moo Crew: Shadow, Champ, Max, Retta and Cinnamon


That we are further blessed with The Girls: Lady, Rina, Bella, Taya and Sara

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

American Horse Council: Welfare Code of Practice

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Kudos to the American Horse Council and the individuals involved in developing this wonderful code below.

Of course I can't help wondering if anyone will actually follow it...

From the American Horse Council's Website:

WE ARE COMMITTED to the dignity, humane care, health, safety and welfare of horses in all our activities and care. These are our highest priorities. We are the stewards of our horses and must be firm in the standards and practices that guide us. Our first principle is:

The welfare, safety and stewardship of the horse is the guiding principle in the decision-making process for all segments for the horse industry.

WE ARE COMMITTED to promoting responsible breeding practices and to produce better horses, not just more horses.

WE ARE COMMITTED to responsible training techniques. All training should be done with the maturation and ability of the horse considered. Horses should be prepared for competition with proper training and conditioning methods. Excessive disciplining methods, whether in stables, training areas, or during competition, will not be tolerated.

WE ARE COMMITTED to educating owners, trainers, veterinarians, competitors, exhibitors and recreational riders to ensure that they know and respect their horse’s abilities and limits, and their own, so as to not push the horse or themselves beyond their ability level.

WE ARE COMMITTED to making all competitions fair and ensuring all competitors an equal opportunity to succeed. Performance-enhancing drugs, practices or equipment have no place in competitions or exhibitions. Effective drug testing by accredited laboratories is essential to the safety and welfare of our horses and the public support of competitions, with appropriate penalties levied for violations. The welfare of the horse must take precedence over the demands or expectations of owners, breeders, trainers, sellers, buyers, organizers, sponsors, officials, or spectators...

To read the entire Code click here

ABOVE PHOTO: Shadow having a dramatic episode (a people lover and official "Goodwill Ambassador" for the Moo Crew, Shadow is a former "Big Lick" show horse with an abusive past).

- And -

(as long as we are standing up here on the proverbial soapbox :o)

Here are some relevant places to visit:

Beverly Horse 90210

This is one of my lenses on Squidoo (Rated G) about the disturbing changes I noted in the show industry over the past umpteen years.

Photo Left: from the - article on "Tail Blocking Gone Wrong" (Link is posted on the lens)

The two blogs featured below are great, but I'd have to rate them both PG-13 due to language (although I totally understand why - this stuff makes me plenty mad too!)

Shame in the Showring

"This blog is about all the shameful things that happen in the equine show industry. If it's bad to do to a horse we're going to "fuss" about it here."

Written by T Jean Maus, who is very point-blank about the sad reality facing so many show horses. It's got some great posts that are well worth reading.

Fugly Horse of the Day

"Snarky commentary on the breeding of poor quality horses, silly or abusive training techniques, and pretty much anything else that annoys me!"

Another great blog written anonymously (?) I'd bet this person gets more "hate mail" than a politician for nothing less than an unapologetic willingness to tell it like it is.

Okay, now go hug your horse (I always feel an overwhelming need to see ours after reading things like this, so they know how very much they are loved :o)

Shut UP [you silly biped] Sheesh!

Friday, October 16, 2009

You know, I'm not always the brightest bulb on the porch (a fact I freely admit), but this morning when that bulb came on, it was so darn interesting that I just had to post it.

Rina has always been the most difficult of The Girls to groom, she is the leader of her little herd and it's a role she takes quite seriously. She's not so much uncooperative as she is somewhat ADHD (or so I thought).

I have a superquick grooming routine with The Girls just about every day. We have an agreement that anything that is done "for me" is rewarded with a treat, and anything I do for them is not; it is all done at liberty and good manners are mandatory. Brushing manes and spraying with conditioner is done every morning to keep the tangles out (but since they could care less about tangles, these would fall under the "for me" category :o) The "pink brush" is a body brush, and everyone (with the exception of Bella) just loves it, making it a reward in and of itself.

Now most of the time, Rina stands nice and still for me as I brush and spray her mane (which I expect her to do). I usually keep a lighthearted running coversation going during grooming, which the horses seem to enjoy - sort of like your basic hairdresser, I suppose. The girls will often "talk" back with little nickers and noises; Bella puncuates hers with kisses and long drawn out mmmmmmmmmmm's that always make me laugh :o)

This morning, however, was one of those mornings with Rina. She did not wish to stand still, moving from one side of her stall to the other, and was just being a total pill. It wasn't until she turned all the way around and bumped me off balance with her hip (which she never does) that the bulb finally came on, making me feel like a nitwit for not having figured it out more quickly.

Deciding to test my theory, I walked over to Rina who was now standing on the opposite side of her stall and started brushing her mane again, this time without speaking. She stood perfectly still the entire time; seems she was trying to tell me to be quiet as best she knew how so she could listen for or to something. In retrospect, I think the hip bump was merely Rina's way of showing her exasperation with my cluelessness.

Horses are amazingly self-aware when it comes to their bodies, and the only reasons a horse will bump you are: 1. to see if he can (a.k.a. a sign of disrespect); 2. they were focused intently on something else and did not see you; or 3. are in a state of panic. Since none of the aforementioned apply here, I guess I'll go with my enlightened thought. Anyway, I guess that's my story and I'm sticking to it... (and thank you for reading it :o)

WOO-HOO... We've been busy on Squidoo!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

What on earth is Squidoo you say?!? It is a community website that allows users to create pages (called lenses) for subjects of interest; they also split any revenue earned by lenses 50/50 with the author. I have been hard at work for the past several weeks to hit "Giant" status (50 or more lenses) which should give us more exposure, and more revenue (we hope). I'm not quite there yet (I have 9 more to go! :o)

I thought I'd post some of my horse-related lenses here for you to see:

I am definitely not professional writer, but the moment I saw the photos from that day the story just seemed to take shape inside my head. You don't have to know anything about horses to read it, although it may be funnier if...


"So You Want to Own a Horse"

Since the ripe old age of four I have been obsessed with horses. Having passed the 40-something mark without losing interest (hey, I even kept all my Breyers :o), I think it's fairly safe to...


"HIS: Horses in Scripture"

Why did I create this lens? Well, I suppose y
ou might say I had a "revelation" of my own one Sunday morning. I was talking to some friends at church about how often horses (my favorite subject) were mentioned throughout scripture...


"Coping With Colic"

Colic is a word that terrifies most horse owners, and rightfully so. While mild episodes of colic are fairly common and sometimes easy to treat, severe episodes can be life threatening. Aside from old age, colic is the number one cause of death among horses.


"Body Language 101"

I'm not an expert by any means, but I consider body language to be the single most important thing we can learn when it comes to being around horses. Horses are inherently honest and forthright communicators and just as we expect them to learn to understand us, so should we make the same effort to understand them. It is the "failure to communicate" that so often causes problems between people and horses. By the time a horse kicks or bites, he has usually...


"Friends of Sound Horses"

FOSH is an acronym for "Friends of Sound Horses". The organization is incorporated as a public benefit humane and education organization. Its purpose is to provide information to the public about the humane care, treatment and...


"How to Host a Worm Paste Party"
Deworming your horse does not have to be a total "night-mare", nor does it have to be some stress inducing ridiculous undertaking (honest :o) With a few simple steps you can go from "It's kind of like doing aerobic exercise with a giraffe" to "Man, that was EASY".

This lens is primarily for horses that do not like worm paste (in other words, 99.999% of them...


"Helpful Hints for Horses"

Horses can be very expensive to own, but there ARE some things you can do that will help save you some money. This lens contains some things I've discovered...


"Personalities Plus"

It's hard to believe, but at one time I used to think that horses were pretty much similar to cows as far as personalities went, (although I knew there were some fundamental differences). I mean I could see that some horses were more...

Thanks so much for reading this far, and I sure hope you'll sneak some peeks at my lenses :o)

Rina: Our Blood Bay Barometer

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Those two verses are one of the most foolproof weather gauges of all time, it's never wrong. I've used it for years and it has always held true; of course that was before we got our little four legged weather woman. While I am well aware that all horses tend to "take it up a notch" when there is a shift in the weather pattern, Rina seems to take it to a whole new level. She is, in essence, a panic attack looking for a place to happen on days it's going to storm.

The photo on the right shows her standing at full equine alert on one such day (she's 3 in this picture and still in her "gangly" phase :o) While she doesn't run around like a raving lunatic, she is definitely edgy and easily agitated. The full alert in the photo was her response to my saying her name softly; I only wanted her to look at the camera (Xanax anyone??)

You can see that the skies are clear in the background, although we did indeed have thunderstorms that day...she doesn't often miss.

To be honest, it took me awhile to catch on to the meaning behind the behavior. I spent lots of time wondering, what on earth is wrong with you today, Rina? As well as some personal eyeball rolling and thoughts like, you are such a total goose girl, sheesh!

The strangest day turned out to be the one in which Rina completely transcended edgy by plopping herself down on the ground in front of the water trough right at breakfast time; what on earth?!?

That was the day a tornado passed over our house, and talk about scary. God was very good to us; aside from a neighbor's metal arbor being squashed flat, there was absolutely no damage done here and yours truly developed a much deeper respect for Rina's forecasting capabilities.

This morning's breakfast report was pink skies and a pingy Rina. Hmmm...guess we're in for some stormy weather today, huh? :o)

If you are interested in exploring equine body language (I'm totally fascinated by it), please see my lens on Squidoo (it took me forever, but I think it turned out pretty well :o) Thanks so much for stopping by!
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