Saturday, March 3, 2018

Long Time, No Post....

Well - it has been a solid few years since I last posted.
So much has changed - so many adventures have happened. I have returned to Wyoming and the Pryors a few times, I went to Nashville to see the Opry, the sights and Jake Owen last April. Last summer, I made it to Vegas to see Mr. George Strait belt out all 60 of his number ones. I took a last minute trip to the Pryors to clear my head last August.

BUT - my favorite thing that I had happen was meeting Jake.

Jake - it was love at first sight. We connected instantly. Oh - by the way, Jake is a horse.

Jake came to me from the person who had been boarding Scooter at the time. A family friend of hers had been leasing land to someone for numerous horses and that person just stopped paying and left the horses. Eventually, he went through the process of making the horses his legally and my friend went in to see if any of them could be useful.

She brought back 6 horses and a mule. These animals had not been handled in over 4 years.
The first encounter I had with them - I just walked into the group of them. Eventually - this big blue roan came right up to me and just buried his face against my body and wanted love. At that second - he had me. I told my friend that if she could get on him without his freaking out, I would buy him if she wanted to sell him.

I have now owned him for 6 months. 

It has been interesting. It has been challenging. It has been rewarding.The more I get to know him, the more I am figuring him out. I know nothing about his past life. He can stand tied for hours. You can get a saddle on his back no problem. He seems a bit clueless with a bit in his mouth, He trailers like a pro. I suspect he may have been a pack horse.He has a large, deep scar on his rump. he can also be a bit nervous about things behind him. Something spooked him once and he remembers.

When I first got him - he was easy to catch, handle and get a halter on. One day in the big pasture - his rival charged us as I was haltering him. After that, he started to swing his rear end at me in protest. I have been working on that and it has dissipated. When I moved him to the new ranch - he was great to catch in the quarantine pen. We worked on his stubbornness on the lead rope. After he was put into the general population, catching him and haltering became a nightmare.

It's funny - I can get him isolated from the herd quite easily. He will follow me. When I need him to come to me - all I have to do is crouch down and he will come to see me.He will follow me into a pen and that is where I would work with him to get the halter on. A few times - it was hard. The last 2 weekends, I was able to just slip the halter on with no resistance at all. When I ca do that - I am so proud and happy. Every small accomplishment I have with him is a huge win. I feel that he is trusting me more and more.

I am guessing him to be somewhere between 10 & 15.

When I bought him, I had his feet done right away.. They had not been done in years. He was nervous but he did well. I had one of the best guys I know trim him.
After I moved him, I decided to use the farrier that the ranch uses. I admit - I was quite nervous about how he would react, especially considering his sudden change in behavior. I tell you - I could not have been more proud of him. And 
fella who trimmed him taught me a lot and could not have done a better job. He said that he could tell Jake had a good mind and that he should be easy to work with. I was happy to hear that from someone who has decades of experience working with horses. My optimism is through the roof. I wish I was able to go more - but I am having to board them fairly far away due to my old guys special needs for winter feeding.

Image may contain: horse, sky and outdoor
Another reason I felt good about buying Jake - he and Scooter hit it off immediately. After that mare I had - who I clearly sold - I think he was happy to have a brother who likes him. There was one of Jake's buddies that didn't seem to like Scooter. The day I introduced Jake and Scooter over the fence - that horse was getting a bit snorty and huffy at Scooter. Jake just bit him on the chest and chased him back from the fence. Then he and Scooter touched noses through the bars on the gate and squished their nostrils together.

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I can walk them together like dogs - and I am hoping to be able to pony Jake off Scooter - that should tell me if he was a pack or trail horse.
I spontaneously decided to put a saddle on Jake - and a put a bit in his mouth and I took him to the round pen. It was windy and we didn't do much but regardless - and work with him is progress.
I have no idea what I am really doing - but I am learning as I go. And the first ride I take on him will be the most rewarding part of this whole experience.

Image may contain: horse, outdoor and nature

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Silly Faces of Miss Montana

I tell ya - this girl makes some goofy faces!
Here are a few!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Welcome To My Little Herd Montana!

So... I was CASUALLY thinking about looking for another horse... or donkey or mule.

There was a potential donkey... but that fell through due to some very sketchy circumstances.

Then I spied a mule on a Facebook group. The list before me was a mile long. I threw my hat into the ring. Alas... he was snapped up.

A few days later I was messaged by a gal who runs a rescue/rehab for horses suggesting that a mare that she had might be a good fit for me after a friend of mine mentioned it to her. We chatted some about her and then decided to go see her.

So on Saturday - that same friend of mine dragged her trailer down to Alix Alberta with me to see this mare.

Montana is a 10 year old Percheron cross. Crossed with what - I have no clue. She is green broke but has the fundamentals and the right attitude and a willingness to please. She is friendly and well mannered... except when we went to load her. Haha. Had a little bareback ride on her in the round pen. She was a bit hesitant and I was a bit clueless... and nervous having 2 riding instructors watching me. But in all fairness - we were new to each other and the trust will take time.

SO.... needless to say the trailer didn't come back empty! Meet Montana! Looking forward to learning and growing with this girl!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Bird Nerd

I love birds. It's always a treat when I can photograph them!
Here are some adorable chickadees from the farm last weekend!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Growing Like Weeds

These little guys are getting so big!
The runt is still tiny. I didn't see her when I got there yesterday and was afraid she may have died. But then I spotted her little butt poking out of the hay.
Sadly - 2 more have been lost and there are only 19 left.
The hazards are obvious when you have mamas weighing hundreds of pounds versus little ones weight only a handful. :( Such is farm life.

The runt. She is so cute.

Above is the dad of all these babies. He is so patient. He goes for a nap and almost all of the  babies swarm him and cuddle up to get warm.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

My Twist on Sherpherd's Pie

As per my Saturday usual, I found myself playing min the kitchen again.
This week: Shepherd's Pie.
I don't do a traditional shepherd's pie by any stretch.
Here is show I make mine!
What you need:
2 or so carrots, halved and sliced
Handful of garlic cloves - minced
A shallot or an onion - finely chopped
Celery (I use the tender center part of the celery, leaves and all), roughly chopped
Mushrooms - I used a half pound - roughly chopped.
Frozen peas and corn. Fresh if you can!
Olive Oil
6-8 good sized potatoes. I used up some reds from last weekend and added yellows.
Sour cream
Grated cheese
Can of mushroom soup
Packet of gravy power
Smoked paprika
1lb ground beef
1lb ground pork
In a large pot, heat up some butter and olive oil.... or just oil. Start to cook down the carrots as they will take the longest.
Add the shallot/onion and garlic, mushrooms, celery and some salt and pepper. I cracked the pepper myself with the mortar & pestle. Add some basil if you'd like.
In a bowl, mix the coup and the powdered gravy and ass a little paprika. I just love the smoky taste - it's not necessary though.
Get the potatoes boiling.
Once the veggies are cooked down, add the frozen peas and corn - I did about 3/4 cup each.
Mix the veggies with the soup and set aside.
Brown the meat in the same pot. I use a pot that can also go in the oven to save on mess.
Once the meat is cooked, dump the veggie/soup mix into the pot - or mix all together on a casserole dish.
When the potatoes are ready, drain them.
melt a quarter to a third of a cup of butter in the pot and get some minced garlic cooking.
put the potatoes back in the pot, mash and add about a cup of sour cream.
Spread over top of the meat mixture. Top potatoes with grated cheese and bake in a 350* oven for about a half hour.
If the gravy bubbles up over the cheese - skim it off, add some more. toss a little bit of bread crumbs on there and broil if you want that crispy cheese crusty top. That's the best.
Let sit for a bit and then enjoy!
For days....

Thursday, November 26, 2015

More Piglet Photos

A little dose of cuteness for you!!
I took about a thousand photos on Sunday...These little guys are just so ridiculous to watch!!

Here is the runt. She is so adorable. And doing very well!