It’s Getting Hot In Here

Hello Friends!

How are we today? We survived another week, so that’s cause for celebration in my book. It’s been 100+ degrees for a while now, ranging up to about 109 so I can say with certainty that surviving is a massive accomplishment.

I have garden pictures this week! The beans are taking off like crazy, only to be outshone by the pumpkins! I can’t wait to roast some yummy garden fresh green beans and I really, really can’t wait to see if the pumpkins come in completely. I’ve not been able to get pumpkins to grow in this soil, although I did have some luck when I lived in the PNW. If we get enough pumpkins, we are going to let the little ones in the family come pumpkin picking, which will be super fun. So hopefully they come in plentifully.

The weeds are coming in plentifully, that’s for sure. My poor dad is out every morning weeding the lines, they come back so fast it might be a losing battle. The chickens are helping too, they love weeds, but they also love the veggies so we have to be very watchful.

Chickens never stop moving! Phone cam + hyper subject = blurry photos

Ro and Nellie are slowly getting used to working first thing in the morning. It’s definitely not preferred, neither of my girls are morning critters apparently, judging by the amount of yawning coming from the loafing area this morning. They take after their mom, I am not a morning person at all.

The other morning there was a miscommunication and the girls got to be out in the pasture super early in the morning before exercise. Ro came running in when she saw me, and she was actually super excited to work, which was great! But she also came in ridiculously muddy since the pasture irrigation was on. She was so, so, so proud of herself. I just had to laugh and take some pictures. We had a spa day Monday, so the girls were especially clean and nice for that muddy morning run. Can stay clean for too long, you see, it’s a cardinal sin.

Look at this smug pony!

The heat has officially pushed the limits of our air conditioning units these last few weeks. We have what are referred to as “room units” in the front room, living room, and master bedroom, but in general they do a pretty good job at keeping the whole house livable. It’s just not fair to judge them when it’s 108 outside and every room has huge windows. We also have some ceiling fans constantly running (here’s your reminder to switch your ceiling fans so they are spinning the right way for summer, because I forgot) to help move air around. Also, keeping blinds closed where we can and working early in the morning helps. But still, I’m fully over it. I miss my warm but pleasant 80s.

It’s also officially mosquito season, which is officially the worst thing in the history of ever (it’s not, it’s absolutely not, but I’m feeling incredibly dramatic today, so bear with me). The county does spray for them usually, which helps somewhat, but they just hired a new guy and he’s not quite up and running yet. In the meantime I am living in bug spray and trying to figure out how to de-mosquito the barn. Also, I bought these super odd bug traps that I need to put up that I am hoping will help, but I just scrape 5′ tall so I need someone taller or a ladder to put them up.

The bug spray is so drying, my poor skin is suffering. I am not the queen of skincare routines to begin with but it feels like I really need to step up my game this year between the glaring sun, insane heat, and aggressive sprays. I’ll let you know if I find something magical, or not so much. I also have a fantastic farmer’s tan going on, and as it is July I think the chances of my actually getting to wear shorts in public are rapidly plummeting. I know I could theoretically sit out in the sun to even the tan, but I burn and I’m way too busy to just sit and not feel guilty. Unless I have a good book. If you all have book recommendations, I love murder mysteries, so anything Agatha Christie or Sherlock Holmes is a big ole win for me.

Otherwise, it’s still kinda slow, the heat really slows things down. They did pull the bales out of the alfalfa field across the canal, and did so in a wind storm, as luck would have it. They only lost two bales which is about average I think, if you are rushing to pick up bales in a windstorm. Major bummer though because obviously split bales are hard to sell, if you can find someone who wants them at all. But he didn’t really have a choice because we have had a ton of wind lately, so things can’t just stop and wait forever. In any case, it’s tempting the local wildlife, and some of the local livestock too, so I am curious what they will do with those giant broken bales. Did I mention they are big one ton bales?

Anyways, I think I’ll leave this here. I hope you guys are having a wonderful day and are having a great and safe summer!

Until we chat again my friends!

A Week of Prep Work

HI friends! This week has been busy busy busy. We had lots of shopping to do, so we spent a lot of time in town, and I had a super fun event to prep for!
My little cousin is going to come out and try her hand out horseback riding! She’s been asking for a while, and I kept saying that she had to wait until she was five years old. I wanted to wait because at five years old, children are usually old enough to be able to articulate when they are excited or scared, what’s concerning them, they understand that they need to be kind to others, and very importantly, they are becoming much more coordinated and balanced.
As soon as she turned five she let me know she was old enough to try lessons. To be honest, I think I’m just as excited as she is. I used to help with lessons as a high schooler, and a little in college, and I have been hoping to have an opportunity to share my love of horses with my extended family more. I would never force it, if she ends up not liking it, that’s totally fine. But, I have a unique opportunity to share something, and if I have little ones around who like it, I can help make cowgirl dreams a reality.

My beautiful girls (and yours truly)! I have sweaty gross hair here, because I am hugely pro-helmet, and I practice what I preach, however when my Dad was snapping photos, he let me know you literally could not see my face under the sun shade.

My farm insurance is a little less jazzed about the idea of my putting a small child on a large horse, so I have spent some time this week researching and writing up a waiver and contract for lessons. I think it is good for all parties involved to have the paperwork in front of them.
Since I don’t have pony sized critters, until my little cousin grows slightly longer legs we will be working mostly on balance, confidence, and paying attention. As she gets more comfortable and gets stronger she will also learn the less fun stuff, how to clean a stall, how to keep tack neat and organized, and the nitty gritty stuff, like how a vet call works, and she will meet the farrier. My goal is to raise up a little well rounded horsewoman, it’s her job to decide where she wants to take her horse journey. Although, if she wants to head straight for the Olympics, more power to her, she’s going to need a better trainer. Your girl’s equitation has gotten… a little rough over time.

Another Dad capture! The girls made rounds running through the pasture sprinklers and rolling in the arena dirt…. it took me an hour to get them looking somewhat clean.

We are gearing up for a parade around here. The National Oldtime Fiddler’s Assoc. Festival and Competition is back this year and we are all really, really excited about it. Usually there’s a little float competition since we all build our own floats out of whatever is available in the local shops, and the float I work on, for our local Love INC, has won it’s share of awards. We are going a little lower key this year, since we didn’t know the state of the parade until about a month ago, and didn’t know the theme until about a week ago. This year our goal is just to beat the local department store. We have an unofficial rivalry with their float team because my uncle works there, but builds on our float. It’s all in good fun, they send spies, we send spies, all in the name of playful banter and getting the town all amped up for the festival.
We were honestly really concerned that we were going to lose the festival last year. It’s been harder and harder for the aging town to keep it going, but the old guard won’t pass on the reins just yet. This is understandable, it’s a town steeped in tradition, but a lot of us younger folk would love to carry on those traditions while still growing our events and the town in general. The pandemic really proved to push the situation, as not only could we simply not have the festival, we couldn’t have any of our usual tourist-y things. This is why this year’s is so so so important. It is partially online, or at least that’s the plan, I’m not entirely sure how that will work, BUT if they end up streaming or posting anything I’ll let you all know so you can be involved as well.

Parade Float Bin, everything I’ve been accumulating decorations wise has ended up here. There’s some bigger items we use every year, like the giant fiddles, that I need to pick up still from the Love INC storage space.

In terms of parade float prep, we are going with a Flag based theme, so I raided some of the Memorial Day clearance racks and have been hunting for Fourth of July based items as well. I have added a laundry basket to my trunk specifically for float finds. (Pro-tip, those Amazon boxes you don’t know what to do with? Trunk organizers… pop the flaps inside the box and they are super handy modular storage that can also still be closed. Second Pro Tip? When you have lots of loose things to carry to or from your car (like, say, float décor) grab a laundry basket. They have handles and are literally made for carrying lots of loose items. Things you learn when you park a decent walk from your front door).

We are looking down the barrel of some storms, so I’m going to sign off here and go park the tractor under shelter and batten down the hatches. It’s a shorter update this time, but I doubt you want the nitty gritty of my shopping trip (I had to go to Walmart, love their prices, generally despise actually going to the store). I’d imagine next week you’ll get pages and pages of my gushing about my little cousin’s first lesson, maybe a parade DIY or two, since we gotta make whatever we can’t find, and possibly a storm video if the gopro cooperates.
Until we chat again, my friends!

It’s Too Warm!

Hi friends!
It’s hot today! It’s actually one of the cooler days this week though. It’s unseasonably warm, today is 98 degrees, usually we are happily sitting mid eighties around late may early June, but this week we hit 106. I wish I was joking.
I’ve had to modify a lot about my schedule this week, which I am super aware that I am lucky enough to work in a job and in an industry that allows for flexible work schedules. It makes farm life much easier when I don’t have to stress as much about scheduling vet visits or farm chores (or repairmen, or more vet visits).
Usually I start work between 5:30 and 6 am in the morning, I know that sounds crazy, but hear me out, I am usually feeling like I put in a good days work around 2:30 or 3 pm in the afternoon and I still have so much day left! This is especially nice when the days are super short in the winter time and the sunlight leaves us at 4 pm. I get just a little more cranky than usual when I don’t get to see the sun. It’s a little easier to get up in the dark when you get a reward.

Dad and his little flock of weed eaters. They take their job very seriously, but are scared of the camera, so I have to sneak pictures.

With it being absolutely melty outside by 2 pm now, I have opted this week to exercise the horses and work on chores before work, which is also pleasant, because I feel super accomplished before even signing in. The downside is, I’m all gross and tired by 7 am. A fair trade off I think.
Ro feels fundamentally very differently than I do. She is not a fan of mornings, and has been pretty vocal about not enjoying 6 am rides. She’s a good sport, she’s been hanging in there and getting our exercise in, but we’ve thrown a few more bucks and kicks, less willing to lead out on rides, and she’s not as easily swayed by cookies. It’s totally fair, we all are a little cranky in the mornings.
I’m not naturally a morning person, so I feel her pain, but I am definitely a “get everything done early so I don’t have to worry about it” kinda person. I love crossing things off that to-do list.
I also can totally see why some people really gravitate toward morning rides, it’s a very fun way to start a morning. I could see it being very peaceful, if your mare isn’t angrily pointing out the sun hasn’t crested the hill yet (it’s light out, I just live next to a large hill, I’m not completely heartless).

Look at how pink and pretty it is in the morning! The sky gets super pink and orange and my phone’s auto setting just didn’t know how to handle it (Also, for some reason wordpress is mangling the quality on upload, not a clue as to why)

Sherlock has recently found out that if he squeezes through the porch rail slats and reaches around, he can sneakily get off the porch and go exploring. This is a big old worry for many reasons. One, Sherlock has literally no equipment or animal smarts, his go-to when frightened is to shrink and hide, especially bad because Ro is not super dog-friendly, she had a bad experience. Two, he’s so tiny that he’s perfect hawk food, which is less than ideal. Finally, I spent a lot of time and research finding a gate solution for that porch to keep him (and his brothers) safe, and I am miffed he’s found a workaround. So, now I am going to weave in some bailing twine to create a soft wall that hopefully he can get around. I’ll run the twine through the gate slats and the offending porch slats just in case.
Speaking of sneaky animals, Nellie has worked out that if she messes at it long enough, she can usually get the arena/corral gate open and closed at her will. Luckily she doesn’t seem interested in playing with exterior gates, but she’s definitely busted the arena/corral gate. I need to figure out how there’s now an inch gap between the gate part and fence part of the latch.
I can’t blame her, Ro and I have been working on opening gates from horseback so we can let Nellie in the arena while cooling out and so we can handle gates on trail rides. I think Nellie just wanted to show off that she’s been paying attention too. It is honestly mind-blowing how smart this horse is when she’s not losing her mind over something spooky.
The beans have started to come up in the garden! They are growing like gangbusters! Well, I think, I don’t really know for certain what that means.

go gangbusters

If something is going gangbusters, it is going strongly and doing very well. If someone comes on like gangbusters, they behave very energetically and sometimes aggressively. [Collins Dictionary]

Peas and okra are maybe starting to come up slowly, and the pumpkins, watermelon, and carrots are now in the ground! Lettuce, tomatoes, and peppers are being started in pots on the porch. All that’s left is the eggplant I think… although I feel like I’m forgetting something. I’ll have to ask Dad. He’s made a bunch of little signs out of the packages, but they aren’t quite ready to go up yet, when they do that will help a lot with identifying veggies.

Happy Little Bean Plant!

We’ve been seeing our hummingbirds lately which is such fun each year. When we don’t have their sugar water up, they come fly between windows until they see a human, and then they tap on the window until you pay them attention.
Public Service Announcement! Red Dye isn’t super great for hummingbirds, so make sure if you are buying hummingbird liquid that you check with your local vet that it is actually hummingbird safe. Boiling certain veggies in your water first will naturally dye it red, I’ve had luck with beets, but I’ve heard cabbage might work too. Bright side is that you also have cooked veggies now, although beets are absolutely the worst so you’ll have to find someone who likes them.
I made homemade spatzle this week! That is the stickiest batter I have ever made, and it turns out that spatzle makers are absolutely not a silly kitchen gadget. I made my spatzle by pressing the better through a colander, and that was a mistake. The spatzle was delicious, I ended up sautéing it in butter, garlic, and rosemary, but I also destroyed every dish in my kitchen. It was super tasty though, so maybe worth it. To be determined.
Homemade gnocchi was a lot easier and cleaner, despite the fact that potato starch gets into everything. It also seems more shelf stable, although I’ve never really had to store any for long. I might make up a batch this weekend, I want to try a new recipe.
Anyways, I’m going to go find the big box fan so I can use my porch again, and I am hoping for cooler weathers moving forward. That pretty much sums up my weekend plans. Hope you had a great week and are looking towards a fun and relaxing weekend.
Until we chat again, my friends!

Let’s Chat About Food For Just A Second

Hello Friends!
Yours truly is ill, and it’s been a whole struggle to do much of anything this week. I did get some breaks in the weather to be able to get a couple things done outside, and Ro especially is ready to work, but I was less so.
So, since I am entirely too gross to take any cool pictures or have any super cool stories, I thought I’d share the one thing that has been very prominent this week…. The lazy girl dinners that have been a staple since I have the patience of a…a… well, Watson to be honest. I am a big fan of easy dinners, that either don’t take a lot of time, or that I can easily walk away from mid cook if I need to. Rice bowls fit that so so so well. So, different vibe this week, but I doubted you wanted several paragraphs of me lamenting that fact that my nose is functionally useless and why, oh why, are cold meds so expensive?! Sheesh!!
Let me remind you, this is not a food blog, what you see below might be offensive to true foodies. I subscribe to the “If it’s tasty, won’t kill me any faster than something else, and it creates decent leftovers, it’s getting added to the meal plan” realm of things. Also, I literally measure nothing, and I do not know the correct names for anything, so I apologize in advance. But these are Manders proof, which means they are literally anyone else proof too, promise.
They are pretty straighforward because I have been learning to cook for only the last couple years, when I moved home to take care of everyone and realized I lived far enough out that there’s no such thing as UberEats, GrubHub, or PostMates, I can’t even get pizza delivery out here. I miss late night pizza delivery. Anyway.

Meal Concept: Rice Bowls

So, here’s the deal, I’ve converted my family to rice eaters. Nobody was nearly as into it as I was, but I can usually get away with a rice bowl or two a week now, they are so versatile, and rice is really easy if you have tools that work for you. You can really stack anything in a rice bowl too, they are magic if you need to use up leftovers, are running on a limited pantry, or just really don’t want to cook. I love them!

For the base to my rice bowls, I use my instant pot as a rice cooker, and in general I make garlic rosemary rice, however if you are going for a specific flavor profile you can easy flavor rice however you want. The trick for short grained rice is a 1-1 ratio of liquid to dry (cleaned) rice, sometimes you’ll find recipes with medium and long grain rice that give slightly different ratios, and a quick google search will be able to help you out. You can totally make stove top rice too, I can’t, I burn it every single time, but I’m told that works just as well for non-cooking-challenged humans. I throw in more rosemary than you think is necessary (I use dried because it’s easier for me to store at the moment, go a little easier on it if you are using fresh rosemary) and more minced garlic than is necessary as well. Crushed garlic or garlic powder works too, as well as pastes, but you may need to fiddle around until you get your balance of flavors where you are happy.
I never use water for rice, always stock or broth, it adds so much flavor. I tend to gravitate toward the lighter flavor of chicken stock, but beef and veggie work well too. Water just doesn’t bring any flavor to the table. I also add around a half a pat of butter to the mixture per cup of rice, it just helps with sticking to the pot, and I’m a county cook at heart, so ya know.
I use this basic rice for most variants of these bowls, and I usually make around six cups of rice, cooked, so I have leftovers. Rice is such a good base for many things. You can also throw leftovers in tacos or soups. Yummy! My two absolute favorite bowls are “I’m too lazy to actually make chicken carbonara” and “I really need to use these veggies”.

“I’m too lazy to actually make carbonara” is basically an excuse to add ham, bacon, and chicken into a smoky sauce. Also, I like one or two pot meals, and this requires the instant pot for rice and a saucepan. That’s it.
Because I am lazy, I am a big fan of canned chicken, but I’m super picky, and I am telling you Kirkland’s canned chicken is the best. It’s a little pricier but the quality is absolutely worth it. I make two cans for four people, but your mileage might vary. I’m not sponsored, I just really prefer their chicken. You’ll also need some cubed ham, if, like me, you tend to feed a lot of people, you may have a leftover whole ham to use up, but you can also buy pre-cubed ham. We usually have bacon bits about, because we really like breakfast in this house, and I always keep minced garlic around as well. You’ll need some chicken stock, cream of chicken condensed soup, black pitted olives (these are optional) and the following spices: smoked paprika, crushed onion, a little salt and pepper, and a little cayenne (again, optional). Spices are to taste, almost everything else is “one package of”… so one can of condensed soup, one package of deli ham, one can olives.
Here’s the best part! The instructions basically boil down to: throw it all in a pot over medium heat and make sure everything gets warm!
Realistically, you want to add your garlic before your chicken (careful not to burn your garlic though, no coming back from that one), and let those both start smelling yummy before adding the ham and bacon. Then mix the chicken stock (I add whatever didn’t get used with the rice, so I would guesstimate about a half cup, or just enough to make the condensed soup a little saucier) with the soup and add that as well as the spices to taste (everything is cooked, so tasting is safe here). Roughly chopped olives only get added right as you are about to pull the concoction off the heat. It looks awful and tastes delicious.
Stack it up on your rice, add a little soy sauce if you have some around, and serve with a side salad, and/or tortillas, and/or chips and dip.
(Or! Throw the rice and chicken mixture in a coffee mug, add your soy sauce, and now you have a one-handed meal to take wherever, amazing.)

I don’t have any pictures of my blasphemous faux carbonara bowl, so please enjoy this old picture of Watson that Snapchat reminded me of this week.

“I really need to use these veggies” is a little more intense because you cook in a couple stages. Veggies and beef don’t cook the same, and I make my sauce separate because that way if I goof it I can start again. Also… egg, if you are feeling fancy, which I struggle with, because again, cooking challenged. This is Joe’s favorite because he sometimes gets a little of the cooked beef before it’s integrated, and that’s just the best thing ever, clearly.
You’ll need beef, thinly cut into strips. Please don’t ask me what I get usually, the nice guy at the butchers counter sees me coming and immediately stops what he’s doing because he knows I’m literally the worst. I have tried, and I think flank steak works well here, but honestly? I tend to use whatever is on sale that the butcher won’t murder me over when I tell him what I’m up to.
You’ll need whatever veg is going south fast in your fridge (but isn’t south yet… gross). I like broccoli and peas, carrots and beans. Sometimes spinach… but that’s more work and honestly? If I have spinach it’s going in chicken gnocchi soup. You’ll need soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, and ginger (I like fresh but I tend to store it poorly, so I use paste, dried is fine too, adjust for flavor intensity accordingly).
Also, some eggs, lemon juice, salt and pepper and a little cornstarch. Sesame seeds are tasty on this as garnish, and I have some theoretically in my cabinet, but they disappear every time I need them, so they are optional. Water Chestnuts are fancy and yummy here too, but not necessary.
You may recognize a lot of these steps if you’ve ever made beef and broccoli, which is my favorite! A lot of this meal is born of me teaching myself to make that. Mix about two tbsp of cornstarch in a little water until you get a thick slurry, and add your raw beef, so it’s coated. Throw a little veggie oil in a sauté pan and cook your meat through, you might need to do batches, that’s totally fine. Also, peak lazy moment, you can totally skip the slurry part. It’s tasty either way.
After your meat is safely in a bowl to the side, cook up your veggies. I can’t give you specific instructions here, other than harder veggies need more time than softer (and you might choose to steam your broccoli if you really want soft broccoli), don’t burn your garlic or onions (you may want to do these separately as well if you have crazy hard veggies), I add some of the ginger and a little soy sauce to my veggies to cook in (don’t saturate, just a little), and for the love of all that is good and holy taste your veggies as you season! I bet you won’t need salt, but a lot of people add it unconsciously. Then set aside your veggies. Keep your pan around, don’t wash (or put in the sink and ignore it) just yet.
Again, I make my sauce separately, so I pull out a little pan here (I have dishwasher privilege, I totally get it if you want to use the same pan, just be prepared to rinse it out so we can cook the eggs last), I add a little sesame oil, soy sauce, more ginger than you think (but… be careful) and a solid spoonful of brown sugar. I add more soy sauce than sesame oil, and more oil than brown sugar, but taste as you go and you’ll get it where you like it. Add a little lemon juice for brightness and let it warm through and get a little thicker (watch it though, it’s sugar and that nonsense is dark magic). While that’s warming on low dissolving your sugar, start your fried eggs.
Best advice for eggs? Get someone else to make them. Seriously. Second best advice? Hold your pan at a tilt so your egg cooks in the crook of the pan until it sets on the bottom, then it’ll hold it’s shape better and be easier to plate. Also, try to keep your yolk runny and intact, it’s the best for this.
Stack beef on rice, veggies on beef, egg on veggies. Drizzle a solid amount of the sauce over it, and any additional soy sauce you might want. Sesame seeds for fanciness. Take Instagram pictures, load Netflix up, profit.

Look at those veggies!! (Ignore that I overcooked my egg…)
Joe begging for snacks

Goodness, this is a long one this week. I guess that’s what happens when I am too gross to be outside. I’m gonna go microwave some leftovers and watch BBC’s Sherlock for the 1 millionth time.
Until we chat again, my friends!

Can You Get Frequent Flyer Miles At The Vet?

Alternatively titled: Why is 2021 the year of vet visits?!

Alternatively alternatively titled: This post is just a collection of blurry phone photos

Hi Friends!

Oh my goodness, we survived it. A crazy weekend that involved a wedding, a funeral, and a graduation ceremony and parade and party. Of course, it picked this weekend to be 91 degrees too! But we survived it, and short of the funeral, everyone had a good time at their events. I don’t know if you can have a “good” time at a funeral, but you can laugh and celebrate your loved one’s life, which we did. The wedding was outdoors, but none of the bridal party melted away so that was a success. The graduation was great! They had the AC on full blast, something like 80% of the graduating class earned some form of academic honors, the parade had a live band on the finale float, and the whole town turned out to celebrate in some way or another.

Nothing quite like packing a year’s worth of events into 48 hours. But when you have 20 first cousins and about 35 family members within the county, events start stacking up like jenga blocks. When you plan your weekends down to “and I’ll have five minutes to eat here” it quickly becomes a science. I literally have so many half done tasks that got left behind, and I keep finding more! We won’t talk about the small pull cart in my formal dining space… that’s basically become furniture at this point. I’ll pack it up and get it back into my trunk eventually, it’s fine.

And, of course, a weekend like this also means a lot of things on the farm got a little behind. Dad has spent this week putting the garden in (pictures coming soon, when it stops storming), and I spent the week supporting Watson, who’s run of the mill dental cleaning turned into an 18 teeth extraction extravaganza. Little guy is feeling rough. He’s definitely a little miffed about the situation.

Poor little guy has the curse of poodle teeth, but hes taking it like a champ. Got some tasty soft food, hes basically been toted around everywhere I go, and I worked from home all this week so I could properly manage his meds. Hes definitely milked it a little, but he also had a very sore mouth so I can’t be mad. He is totally okay as long as I stay in his line of sight, if I try to disappear I have to grab someone to babysit because he has a small panic. He is also really frustrated that he can’t eat the same food as his brothers, even though he’s been loving the super soft food. He’s always been a little bit of a food hoarder, so it goes against his life principles to not constantly be eating and guarding the food bowl.

Watson pre-teeth extraction, being a ham
Watson, joining a Zoom meeting, telling me it was time for his antibiotics

Sherlock also visited the bet this week because we noticed a cataract forming on his eye. It didn’t seem to be bugging him at all, but I am a worrier to the maximum and didn’t want something preventable to turn into an issue down the line. Sherlock is such a champ as well and handled all parts of the appointment perfectly, from the dye to the flashlights, to the ear check (we had a lovely vet student hang out with us, who was in awe of how tiny Sherlock is, fun fact, he weighed in at 3.4 pounds this time). The good news is, while our vet has some reservations, she’s pretty sure the cataract is hereditary or at the very lease, an intrinsic part of him, and, while it will most likely annoy him some as it progresses, he seems totally fine with it for now, and there’s no sign of infection or pain. She asked if I had seen any changes in vision but to be honest, he’s always acted as though he didn’t have great eyesight, so I don’t think I would notice the difference.

This is Sherlock’s good eye, also isn’t he cute?!
Sherlock never stops bouncing, so most of my photos of him are blurry, but here you can kinda see to the left of the image his grey eye. Also, peep my amazing, definitely not seriously dated 70s linoleum… yep, it’s several shades of gold…jealous?

Nellie and Ro have had quite a few days off due to the craziness of the weekend and the following vet post care filled week. I did find some time to give the girls a really good brushing out so we have (well, had, for about two minutes, hence why I didn’t get pictures in time) shiny clean coats. Ro usually hates being brushed out, no patience for standing around, but I think she had enough of her knotted sprinkler hair. Admittedly, the mane and tail situation on this farm still needs work.

The latter half of this week has been kinda stormy in that irritating “Technically I can still get chores done but it’s all going to be way harder” kinda way. I am excited for it in some regards though, as my uncle’s water pump went out this week and he’s at serious risk of losing about 200 acres of crop. My aunt has been trying to track down a replacement, or even a temporary solution, but with all the craziness with shipping and import/export lately, it’s hard to get ahold of anything anywhere, let alone machinery parts in a rural setting. Just an icky situation all around. Hopefully the rain is enough to help a little, it’s splattering against my window as I write, so I hope it’s hitting up there as well.

As it all stands, I’m looking forward to a super relaxing calm weekend. Going to catch up on some riding, some cleaning, and most importantly, some resting. Maybe even get some ideas for blog stuff actualized…. Maybe. Overall, a much needed break. Hopefully we will get back to our regular farm shenanigans next week, can’t wait to show you the garden, I wanna try to get some fun horse related footage, and I’ve got lots of summer projects I want to take you along on.
Until we chat again, my friends!

Scooby was trying so hard to be brave, he hates the flooring in my room. Also, new riding boots! It’s only been a decade, about time for a replacement (Especially since you can see my socks through my current boots)

There’s Always Something To Do On A Farm

Happy Friday, you beautiful souls!
My aunt and uncle are visiting me, and I am so excited! Don’t worry, we are being covid safe. I love having them here, prior to covid they would come a few times a summer and stay for a couple weeks at a time, this time they are staying for only a couple days but might be able to come again soon!
We got lots accomplished this week. I’m pretty happy.
First of all, my lovely mom went treasure hunting in our storage space and found something very special to me. For a little context, my parents moved in and my mom almost immediately had her health deteriorate, my brother and I moved back and almost immediately took over a lot of the day to day, so it took over a year to actually unpack and settle, and there’s a storage shed space on the farm that is basically “everything we didn’t have time to unpack at the time”. Which is why I’m still missing items almost three years on. It’s a little daunting to go in there, there’s a lot of Christmas décor, baby clothes, and just random weird nostalgia everywhere. Anyways, my mom has taken to going in there every couple of weeks and sorting a little here and there, she seems to like having it as an independent project, and she found my show bridle!

Some of the details on my beautiful show bridle

I was gifted this beautiful, hand-made bridle by my parents when I was 16. I was showing my trainer’s crazy pink paint horse (he was absolutely pink in the sunshine, and the most opinionated giant puppy dog of a gelding) and I had none of my own tack and equipment. I saw the bridle at a swap meet where I was volunteering, my trainer noticed and sneakily told my parents, and they pulled a sneaky purchase without my knowledge. Funnily enough, it never fit Wilson well, so it never got used, but I loved that thing, and it hung in my closet forever in high school and most of university. When I moved, it never made it to my senior year housing, and when I moved home it wasn’t with the stuff at my parents’ house either. I had a feeling it was gone forever. BUT! Somewhere, and I have no idea where because I hunted for it forever, Mom found it, and it fits Ro! So, my gorgeous show bridle is back in my life!
Also, I got an honest to goodness gate latch on my arena gate! I no longer need to walk around or struggle to unchain the gate, and life just got so much easier. I can’t wait to slowly replace every chain latch with an actual one hand latch. So much easier and safer. I leave the chains on, so that I can secure never opened gates, and so I have a backup should a latch break, but I hate using chain latches for day to day and am always excited to upgrade.
I cleaned up and shocked the water trough, and added a new self-cleaning bag of barley, finally folded up the giant tarp that has been taking over my tack space, and finally got the farrier out to see the girls and trim up hooves! All in between some crazy looking clouds that threatened to turn ugly. It was a crazy busy week.

New Gate Latch (I definitely have found new reasons to go in and out of the arena just to use the gate)

While I’ve been at work (the new job is going amazingly by the way, maybe one day I’ll share a little more about what I do when I’m off being a fancy Software Dev) Mom and Dad have been cleaning out and mulching the gardens around the house. It looks so amazing! I must say, I was a little skeptical about the mulch, I thought it would be too dark and stuffy, but it really is making the beds look clean and fresh. I need to do some work in those gardens, we lost a lot of our perennials this year because of the late cold snaps and inconsistent weather… the winds haven’t helped much either. I have heard, however, that a family member is putting in a new deck and removing some of their beds, so I might see if I can re-home their bulbs. Our tulips have done well, so hopefully more of those will continue to erupt.
In other news, there’s a horse down the way from us that looks so similar to Ro, and I’ve been curious about him for a while, so you can imagine my surprise when I came home this week and said horse, with rider, were wandering along the canal road, just the other side of the canal from my corral. It honestly scared me at first because it kind of looked like Ro had, somehow, gotten out and over to the road. I think I also scared the rider because I went absolutely flying down to the corral to see what on earth was going on. But the horses name is Jack and the rider’s name is Jaime, and I think we might be good neighbors, if all he said about Jack being his best companion was true.

Lots of water for warm weather flowers!

Well that’s all for us around here, the weather is getting warm throughout the day, so soon I’ll need to move my schedule around to be able to work in the cool of the morning outside. Summer is my absolute favorite, and I am so happy it’s starting to show.
Until we chat again, my friends!

The ‘Q’ word


It’s been a sleepy, rainy kind of week on the farm, not a whole lot got accomplished. We had a vet scare on Friday and it definitely set the tone for the week. By the way, what is up with vet scares on Fridays? I swear we’ve gone years without a medical emergency from the critters and now two? Geez.
Watson had a Parvo scare; I got a call at work that he had thrown up and was generally acting like he had a tummy ache. The vet’s office was “pretty sure” it was not Parvo but wanted to be safe over sorry, so we treated it as though it was the case. Thank goodness it turned out to be just a tummy bug. Watson was on a little run of antibiotics for a few days just in case since we couldn’t pinpoint an exact cause. He has some food sensitivities so it also could possibly be something the sneaky pupper got into, despite my best efforts.

A funky little tulip from my garden

Ro and Nellie have been pretty keen to work lately, and they’ve been loving having the sprinklers on when they are out in the pastures. Ro especially been such a good girl, we’ve really had some great work. I think we had a little bit of a breakthrough in one of our trouble spots. I messaged my dear friend and partner in equine related crime (so to speak), and she was able to give us some solid advice. It felt really good to conquer some of our issues. Ro is such a good girl, the issues are minimal, but that just makes me all the more excited to learn how to fix the little things and become a better rider for her. Nellie has gotten really adept at stealing tack off the fence, running away with equipment, and yelling at anyone not actively paying her attention. She has been absolutely cracking me up with her antics. My brother has a habit of shouting “Nellie Belle!” from the porch at her when she’s being cute, and she has started responding in kind. The neighbors probably think we are nuts. They wouldn’t be wrong.
Much of the irrigation still needs work, and my lovely mares have done their part to break as many sprinklers as we’ve been able to fix, but I am hoping to have the pasture lines all fixed soon. That’s this coming week’s goal anyway. But realistically, irrigation is an ongoing battle, we almost never have everything in working order all at once. It does look like maybe the yard sprinklers are back together enough that I can use the scheduling bit again. The brains of that operation, the little computer in an electrical box on my porch, randomly decides game over, and I usually have to call someone. We also found out the opossum that has been wreaking havoc lives in my little cubby for the valves. So, that was a fun surprise for my sprinkler guy. I’m, uh, not sure what the plan will be to ultimately solve that… opossums are kind of scary.
Saturday, Sunday, and Monday had some fun storms. I had tried to capture some of it, but that was just not meant to be. We had a little thunder, a lot of rain, even some hail. The nice thing was the pasture and gardens got watered without much work on our part. The rough part was those storms were spaced just such that we were basically stuck inside for about three days. You really don’t want to be working on irrigation in a lightning storm or trying to clean up sagebrush in the wind. Not super ideal. Made for some beautiful cloud formations and forced me to get some indoor work done. Admittedly, when it’s pretty I have a hard time wanting to clean and keep the house running. My family concurs.
I think we finally got all our seeds in the mail, which is super exciting. We ordered straight from a seed curator this year since last year was such a bust. I bought most of my seeds from a local store, where I had had some luck before, but they hadn’t stored the seeds correctly and most of the seeds were no longer viable. Of course, we didn’t find this out until much later in the growing season, too late to replant things, and we didn’t have much of a yield last year. Hopefully this year, since we are getting them straight from the source, we will have better results.
We ordered some new plant types too, which I am excited to try. We got some peppers, watermelon, and lavender seeds among others.  My brother is particularly excited about the peppers, I’m most excited about peas. Peas rarely make it out of the garden, they tend to become a gardening snack. Hopefully some make it in this year so I can cook with them. I love peas in a bunch of dishes.

This is also a tulip… I know, I was shocked too

We should be able to plant soon, we are waiting for the telltale mountain peak to lose its snow, generally, when that particular peak is bare, we won’t have any hard freezes or frosts anymore and it’s safe to plant. I’ve heard some talk that a few people jumped the gun in the valley and planted early and lost some seeds. I hope that’s idle gossip, and no one really lost an entire garden already. That would be pretty heartbreaking.
Overall, pretty quiet week, although I probably shouldn’t use that word and jinx us. We have some plans for the coming weeks, that I’ll keep mum about for now, but hopefully will make for some fun posts. I’m excited for the garden posts, and upcoming projects, and if I can ever get this file to behave, the blog should switch to spring colors soon. Fingers crossed on that one.
Until we chat again my friends!

Cats, Cameras, and Canals (oh, my)

Hello there!
It’s getting warm out! Oh my goodness, the flowers are starting to bloom, the animals are shedding winter coats, and it’s been a lot of fun to work on the porch when we can. It has been windy though, we lost a flag this last storm, tattered itself to pieces before we could wrestle the pole down. A telescoping pole, when under tension from the wind, is no longer a telescoping pole.

Joey got his summer haircut, and while he doesn’t look like a poodle anymore, more like a lab, he is a much happier dog, and has been wreaking Joe-sized havoc on the farm. He’s a little miffed, because I had to replace one of his tennis balls (I buy them in bulk now, not even exaggerating). Why did I have to replace it? He had literally torn all the fuzz off of it, and it had developed it’s own level of sentience, it was so gross… Joe is rough on tennis balls.
The girls have had an easier couple of days because I cracked a couple ribs and haven’t been big on the whole twisting and bending thing. The doctor said “No driving and stay out of the saddle”, among other things, but what I heard was “you don’t have to go grocery shopping and no lifting the saddle, bareback rides only”… I think that’s a fair interpretation. Although to be entirely honest, I have been avoiding riding for a couple days, because my real life, adult job requires sitting at a desk for a long time each day and I’m pretty sore by the time I get home.
Since I’ve been taking it easier on chores, I’ve had a little extra time to enjoy the outdoors this week, and I got to take my camera out on a (low key) adventure for the first time in a while. I forget how good nature walks are for the soul. The photos are middling, but the attitude has greatly improved. Funny how that works. I’m always happy when I have camera in hand.

The cats, whom you haven’t yet met, are in some level of trouble this week. Juliet and Cordelia have a tendency to get into places they aren’t welcome, mostly because it’s unsafe for them, and Monday morning I found them in my car. They had found one of my windows about a half-inch rolled down, and decided the best option was to force the window lower and spend the weekend partying in my backseat. They re-organized my tailgate storage (I drive an SUV), knocked several knobs off my dashboard controls, and unfortunately used my car as a litter box. The also stripped out the gearing in that window… so it no longer rolls up. Don’t worry, I have it secured closed until I can get it fixed up.
Luckily, my lovely family helped me scrub the new-found gross out of my car, and I spent too much money on air fresheners to help mitigate the smell. This little old lady heard me telling the sales associate what I was looking for and why, and she handed me a little off-brand air freshener, assuring me it would cover the cat smell. Boy, was she right! My car now smells like pina colada… from about 5 feet away with the windows rolled up. Honestly, still prefer it to the litter box smell so I am a happy camper.
Juliet and Cordelia are an interesting duo. Juliet is a social butterfly, more dog that cat in terms of happily following you around doing chores, drinking from the hose, trying to round up horses. Cordelia pretty much hates everyone unless she’s hungry or bored. Hence why it’s hard to get a decent image of Cordelia. Although it’s just as hard to capture Juliet on film because she wants to hug the camera. They are a comedy duo, and they’ve lived on the farm longer than any of us. We joke that we bought two cats and the farm came with them. Juliet has a brother, who we believe we might have seen, but since we cannot confirm it’s Romeo, we call that cat Black Cat (how original). We joke that Black Cat and the other strays that hang around are Juliet’s friends who stayed too late to drive home. I’d like to say they keep the mice at bay, but since my dad is a massive pushover, it mostly just means I buy cat food for a whole herd of cats. They are fun to watch though, so it’s a fair trade-off.

The canal filled up this week, which was super fun. I happened to come home from work just about 5 minutes before it started to fill. While all the animals and the house are obviously on the well, we use our shares of canal water to water the garden and pastures. The pasture really needs some water, but the irrigation has been an endless source of trouble this year. We will get it worked out soon, but springtime is when you find all the winter worn pieces that needed replacing. It will be really nice to have the irrigation working though, as the grasses need it, the horses love to cool off in it, and I like the added security during fire season of knowing my watering system is up and running.
They drain the canal usually just before the first predicted frosts, unless someone needs to keep it running longer, and they refill the canal with flowing water in April after most of the frost risk is gone. This year we had a couple late frosts, and some farmers who were watering already had some icy mornings chipping away at their frozen systems. It’s definitely a calculated risk to start watering earlier.
Well, that’s mostly it for us on the farm. Been a little slower this week. The plan for next week is to get some real riding done, get the irrigation up and running, burn some of our foliage pile (we lost a lot of limbs in the winds this year), and hopefully install a new gate latch on my arena gate, which I am ecstatic about. It’s been a hard gate to find a latch for, because it’s pretty janky, so fingers crossed that works and I can show you in upcoming posts.
Until we chat again, my friends!

The Anatomy of a Farm Call

This week we had our standard, yearly vaccination and checkup farm call. What is a farm call, you ask? A farm call is when the vet comes out to your farm, so that you don’t have to haul all your animals into the clinic. On our farm, those animals getting vaccinated are the two horses and four dogs.
Farm calls kind of stress me out. They shouldn’t, my animals are either trained to stand nicely for the vet, or are actively learning to do that, so realistically it’s not a huge deal anymore. But past experience means I worry. Let’s step through how I prep, get through, and de-compress from a farm call, and maybe, just maybe, it’ll help you with your vet visits too! Or you will laugh at my obsessive over-planning… both are totally fine!

So, like anything in life, prep is key. I always, always try to make sure I am on the farm, and off work about an hour before the vet is scheduled to arrive. It sounds silly, but you are providing the location for your vet visit, you want to give yourself enough time to make sure it’s set up the best for your pets. For the horses, I pull out their favorite gear, like Nellie’s worn out, slightly too tight halter that she loves so much, and I make sure to have some major happy rewards standing by. My girls both love sweet oats, peppermint cookies, and Nellie loves her blue brush, so those are always set within reach. I’m sure you already know, but it’s always good to make sure fences, equipment, etc., is all safe and functioning before the vet arrives, too. While we hope for the best, prepping for a bad day is better so you aren’t caught off-guard.

When prepping with the dogs, I make sure they’ve had time to go outside and work out the crazies, go potty, get some water, and relax. My pooches are all kennel trained, and if they get nervous seeing the white truck, they have been trained that they can go chill in their space until they are needed. Since I have both small and large dogs, I make sure to have a clean table for the vet to use, and a clean floor space as well. Our back porch and picnic table work for this, but anything that is safe and easy to setup will work.

I know you lovely folks are all smart enough to know this, however I would be remiss if I didn’t say: DON’T LEAVE YOUR SMALL DOG ON THE TABLE WITHOUT BEING RIGHT THERE. Small dogs strongly believe they can fly, but have not developed the necessary wings during their more recent evolutionary adaptations. And a final preparatory note, it’s always helpful to have another person or two, depending how many animals you have. Especially with large animals, it’s immensely helpful to have all hands on deck. I am very lucky in that I had three extra sets of hands for this visit, so things went super quickly. I was able to have someone always getting a handle on the next critter in line, someone monitoring or spoiling the animals who are already finished up, and I could just interface with the vet and current animal in question.

A very worn out Nellie Belle

So, how did the day actually go? It went great! Best farm call yet. Realistically, this shouldn’t surprise me as I have wonderful critters and an unusually amazing set of vets. This particular call saw our Dr. Kurt come out, he’s newer to our farm but has proven to be a hoot to work with and very patient. I am forever impressed with how much Nellie grows in between each vet visit, each time she calms herself down much quicker, and the danger level decreases.

Nellie is really our wild card right now. She is the only one who is absolutely, wholly, vehemently against farm calls. She does not like new people, she really doesn’t like vaccines (which fair, no one likes shots), and she finds the whole standing still thing absolutely obnoxious.  The first vet visit after she came home, I genuinely thought one of us was going to end up in the emergency room, and I cried most of the night after because “what if I can’t help her?!”. But we’ve been working really, really hard, and Miss Nellie only minorly freaked out this time. She did spin, and threw her head and tried to get away, but she calmed herself down and, for the most part it, was a successful experience. She is highly food motivated so we are trying to associate her favorite snacks with the vet, and we are hoping the excitement of yummy snacks will eventually outweigh the scariness of a stranger with a needle (not to say I blame her, I would also panic a little).

I usually try to do Nellie first, simply because I know from experience that if she sees what’s happening ahead of time, she will build it up in her head and cause a much bigger deal, and I also know the rest of my critters are farm call veterans and seeing Nellie upset won’t bug them. If she set off the other animals, I would probably swap orders, so I can’t tell you for sure “do your craziest animals first”, that’s got to be a judgement call.

I also focus on one area of the farm than the other, so horses first in the corral, then dogs on the porch, that way the process goes much quicker and when that subsection is finished, they can go back to normal, which makes post-vet cleanup easier. Your vet will also tell you if they need specific changes, like a shadier spot to prevent sunburn, or someplace where the truck will fit easier so they can set up. This will also dictate what order and how quickly you can get things done.

A Sleepy Post-Farm-Call Scooby

After the vet is finished up with an animal, I try to get them back to their normal as quickly as possible. The horses are immediately fed cookies and let back out in the pasture, and the dogs are allowed to roam the house again, whether they want to go hide in their dens or munch on some food or lay in the sunny window. The biggest rule is that the animals get the day off on farm call days, so no riding, no training, lots of cuddles and relaxation.

It’s also worth noting that with some vaccines come side-effects, so it’s good to ask ahead and be ready for that if you can, but definitely at least asking the vet at the time of injection what to expect is a good idea, because, for example, my pack was all a little sore and grumpy after their suite of shots, and I was warned there might be minor cold-like symptoms, which kept me from freaking out when Scooby was not feeling well.

Another note, your equipment, leashes, halters, treat bins, all of that is going to end up everywhere, so plan a few minutes post visit, when all your lovely critters are settled in, to walk around and put everything back in its home, file your paperwork, and take a quick inventory. It’s also worth noting that this is a perfect time to quietly celebrate to yourself, and take note of things that could be improved on from this visit.

Phew, we did it! That’s the basic run-down of a farm call on my little place. I definitely spend a lot of time thinking about, planning for, and admittedly stressing about vet visits, and I’m always pleasantly surprised by the results. Luckily, they aren’t super frequent.

The final tips? Make sure you like your vet(s), make sure you have a plan, even if it goes sideways, a plan facilitates preparation, and overall, make sure you give credit to the critters who are about to have a stranger poke and prod them, get all personal, and them leave. They deserve all the patience and understanding.

Until we chat again, my friends!

A very rare, very blurry picture of a sleeping Joe

History and Hooves

What a week on the farm!

So, really quickly, Sunday night we had a crazy windstorm and let me tell you, no one on the farm slept that night. The horses were cranky, the dogs were cranky, the humans were definitely cranky. So, that set up the tone of the week, despite best efforts, we were all tired and frustrated this week. This is also my excuse for the rambling, incoherent post that you are about to read.
I had a decent amount of Easter prep to do this week, as we are holding a socially distanced Easter celebration at the farm so that we can still participate in my family’s favorite holiday. I have about two hundred eggs that I filled with chocolate, and deviled eggs and ham in progress, plus a couple desserts, at the final writing of this post. Everyone also brings their favorite dish, and we picnic in the back garden. The kiddos hunt eggs, and the adults sneak the extra candy, and it’s a ton of fun.

The restocked outside toy box, not to be confused with the inside toy box, all ready for Easter. No, I don’t have kiddos, I just have wee ones in my extended family

The next super cool thing that happened this week requires some context. Since moving to this little plot of land, on a semi-regular basis we have had people stop by the farm, or notice the address on my license, and mention that they used to stay on my property, or lived on my property, or worked there. It was crazy, and a little worrying, when one man came by and asked if he could bury his grandmother in my horse pasture because she grew up there. We said no… for obvious reasons.
But, with that context, somewhere around a couple weeks ago a little old couple came by, the little grandmother said her family homesteaded the property and she was hoping to walk around and reminisce. She walked around for a while telling stories and sharing facts, it was really interesting. She almost cried when we let her take home one of the foundation stones from the original 1906 stone home that no longer exists on the property (We found out about it when the garden wall initially fell over, and my neighbor let me know that wall was built out of the old home). She promised she would send us some history when she got home.

The original house that sat on my property. Each stone was about 2’x2’x1′

Tuesday evening, she delivered. We learned so much about my tiny slice of the valley and that it has quite the storied history. Originally homesteaded by a woman named Christina in 1888, it became the property of her husband shortly thereafter because she was both a woman and an immigrant, and thus could not hold land. But how cool that she originally decided to take the matters into her own hands as a single woman in the late 1800s? After they settled into the stone home that originally sat on the property, it became quite the hub of activity. They raised race horses and hosted races, weddings, funerals, picnics, and all sorts of clubs in the parlors of the house, and never turned away anyone needing a place to stay for the night. Hence just about everyone having some connection to the land. In 1945 their grandchildren built the house I live in how (admittedly, it was a little smaller, the previous owners added on in the 90s).
So, best we can figure, based on the articles and our new friend’s stories, the garage is mostly original, new siding and roof, but the timber is the same. The pastures were set up a little differently back then, but what I have now turned into a riding ring, probably was also a riding ring back then. There was a lot more property, most likely in orchards, but that land was sold off around the 40s.
My favorite part of this tale is two-fold, one, when the original family sold this property, those who were still working actually went to work on my great-great-granddad’s place, so there’s a connection there. Two, it’s well within circumstantial evidence to conclude that my great-great-grandparents attended parties and events on the land I now live on. I loved this little farm before, but now I feel so much more connected to it.
In other news, Ro had her first saddled ride back since autumn, due in part to a back injury, followed by a severe set of allergies, followed by a gross, wet winter. I rode her bareback lots, but we tried to keep things as low key as possible and just bailed on tacking up, ditching the headstall and saddle for bridleless rides. Coming back into work though, we wanted to get back to some serious work, and hopefully more trail riding, and a saddle is a necessary part of that training.

Fixing up some tack for our ride, photo courtesy of Christopher

I had pretty much assumed she was going to have a fit since it had been so long, but she was amazing. I don’t know why I always underestimate this mare, she’s a treasure.
Nellie was very brave several times this week, choosing to stay out in the pasture by herself during Work Time (she’s allowed to somewhat dictate if she wants to work because of her leg injury) and letting me hang dangly bits to her halter while we worked on her ground manners. Both of those things would have sent her into complete and utter meltdown this time last year. She was so proud of herself yesterday for walking along with her sister while we cooled out, that she’s a little impossible to deal with now. I also think it’s time I find her a new halter, as she’s gotten so healthy and grown into her size recently, that her halter is verging on too small.
We started the process of burning the winter weeds, and they’ve burned some of the canal banks now to clear the brush, which means we are officially in fire danger season but also officially in prep for planting which is always a fun and busy time of the year. The days are getting longer and longer and it’s so hard to be a responsible human and go to bed now. But I love how early the sun comes up. It’s been cloudy this week, so I haven’t gotten many sunset pictures, but stay tuned for that!
I hope your weekend is lovely,
Until we chat again, my friends!

BONUS! Was playing with the hyperlapse feature, so here’s me cleaning up after a ride, and desperately wishing I had a groom