Here in central Alberta prime farm country,my husband Martin and I work together raising beef cattle and Appaloosa horses. Fern valley appaloosas have long been known for their quality of temperament conformation and color.I have recently rediscovered a love of writing and have published 2 collections of poetry. "Telling Tails" and Tails Trails and Campfire stories" . I look forward to a future spreading my wings as an author and as a horse woman .
That is what this weekend has felt like so far! And we are only halfway!
Friday afternoon I came home early enough to turn Harley out for a bit. It was his first big outing so I left the lead on him in case I needed to grab him fast. A little iffy on the leading out, but pretty good for a baby
he blew off some steam
Then went to meet the "Quiet Giant"
then blew off a little more steam
He went back in leading like an old school horse , and back out for a run this morning leading out with excellent manners!
After Harley got put to bed and chores were done , we were graced with a wonderful visit . Linda, from One Old Cowgirls view along with her hubby and sweet old dog Blue. The were here on the way to another stop, and we had the pleasure of enjoying supper and a lovely visit , then I did my best to feed 'em up good before I sent them on their way this morning! She brought me a lovely gift as well. Such great folks!
And if that wasn't enough for one weekend , we were invited to go sleigh riding today ! Headed out to Darwell around noon and away we went !Great fun , great folks and beautiful horses, and ...
"Team Meeting " LOL
Bob and Alicia's team
Happy's lovely new team
Not sure of the names of the owners of the next two teams but Gorgeous horses all the same
Bobs girls from the front
And here is the ... Gary and Brenda , and their gorgeous team of draft mules!
Tomorrow is looking like the joy ride will continue! Spending a bit more time with Harley, chores and barn cleaning. Then to town to have a visit with Martin's buddy, and to my Aunts for the evening!
Weird title? maybe ,maybe not , hang in there with me.
As I said in my last post it was likely the last Christmas we would all be on the old farm so we made the most of it ! Spending time with family, and enjoying some great memories .When I took my dad over to Uncle Bills party, Christmas eve, Uncle Bill hugged me so hard I thought I would lose my stuffin's! Dad lives just across the garden but for many reasons has not been able to attend for some time.I think he really enjoyed the visit and I know so many were happy to see him there . Christmas morning ,Martin and I were up bright and early ,did chores and headed back to mom and dads. We shared in a lovely brunch featuring Tara's home made cinnamon buns. Then opened gifts.
I am a spoiled, wife,sister , daughter and Auntie !!! What wonderful thoughtful gifts!
Tara made her gifts this year, a handmade snow globe , and a fancy jar of lemon sugar body scrub! I even dug out my craft box, and made 3 angels for 3 of my special angels who are now each living in their own homes this year and have their first Christmas trees.
Each was accompanied by this little verse
Christmas Angel to watch you from above
your own tree, made by me with love
special angel with Butterfly wings
celebrate life and the changes it brings
Christmas to my own special Angel
Whether home made or store bought each gift exchanged was one with meaning from the giver to the recipient and given with love . And accepted with joy, as it should be .
The dinner was a joint effort with Tara making stuffing , Heather and Dad were up in the wee hours getting the bird in the oven , I helped carve and make potatoes and brought cabbage rolls, made at home as taught to me by my old friend Mrs P. Dee, was busy setting the table beautifully , the boys kept busy helping with all and sundry. And Heather and I kept mom and dad entertained in the kitchen chatting , helping and singing Christmas songs .
We then proceeded to eat too much dinner and a big slice of Heather's wonderful gingerbread cake, then the gang all pitched in to clean up, well except me, I was dedicating a moment to my GranddadBlaine , and investigating the inside of my eyelids for a time LOL (after a dinner he would say "I am ruined! " and then go and dose in a chair for "forty winks"
SO there you go, that was our Christmas , hope all was well with everyone.
Will be starting my "Year in review post soon and then ,since I was gently reminded by someone on Christmas eve I have not been posting much lately , I will get after writing some new posts!
Wow December is speeding along, I keep wanting to do a new post and I have put up the odd one but really not much to say. Getting Ready for Christmas, it will be the last one at mom and dads house as old farm is being sold , we will likely spend Christmas Eve at my Uncles home for his annual gathering then home for chores and back to the old farm for Christmas day ! A bittersweet time to be sure, but with family around it can never really be sad .
I wrote this poem a while ago, and it is actually in my 2nd book, but I have never before posted it. Now seems like maybe a good time to share it.
Dusty and Jigs, and an old dog named Peps
And grabbing the paper, off Aunties Barbs steps
Awaiting the School bus by the highway in September
Just some of the times I still can remember
The big old Spruce trees that reach for the sky
One lit up for Christmas in all years gone by
The old Dairy barn
And salt in blue blocks
This is the place, where I learned to walk
And to work and to ride, both bikes and on horses
And learned the true facts
Of Nature’s good and bad forces
Delivering milk, all round the farm
Those crates seemed so heavy, upon my young arm
The sweet smell of silage that wrinkled your nose
And the wonderful feeling of grass on your toes
Sweet peas so fragrant all up on the vine
Scented the breeze near grandmas clothesline
Our gardens so huge and us on our knees
Griping and grumbling
Picking green beans and peas
Farm life is good it isn’t all hard
I remember the water fights out in the big yard
100 years plus, here on this land
Where a young William Horricks. First took a stand
A heritage built, on hard work and grit
Where all of us learned, to just never quit
With George, and with Charlie, then Bud, Bill and Ron
They took up the torch, the old place stood strong
And now progress has come,
As we knew that it would
Soon new homes will be built
Where our heritage stood
I wonder will they know
Will they understand?
The magic that lies right here in this land
The light of our dreams let loose to soar
The echo of cows and the big combines roar
The things I shall take, as I say farewell
To this space
Are the memories fond, and no matter the place
That each of us land, and wherever we roam
We learned it here first
Our family is home
Not too many pictures these days either , but busy days and COLD!
I will leave you with this for now ...
is on his way!
It seems to me that every year around this time I share this with you , but it is a favorite of mine . The Christmas Carol "I heard the bells on Christmas day "
This year as others I will again share this with you if you chose to listen. It is a simple poem by Henry Wordsworth Longfellow . Here is the complete poem, the song leaves out the verses reflecting the battlefield
I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
and wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
Till ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;
"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on the earth, good-will to men."
"During the American Civil War, Longfellow's oldest son Charles Appleton Longfellow joined the Union cause as a soldier without his father's blessing. Longfellow was informed by a letter dated March 14, 1863, after Charles had left. "I have tried hard to resist the temptation of going without your leave but I cannot any longer," he wrote. "I feel it to be my first duty to do what I can for my country and I would willingly lay down my life for it if it would be of any good". Charles soon got an appointment as a lieutenant but, in November, he was severely wounded in the Battle of New Hope Church (in Virginia) during the Mine Run Campaign. Coupled with the recent loss of his wife Frances, who died as a result of an accidental fire, Longfellow was inspired to write "Christmas Bells". I have written about how much I like this song before and mentioned that after he passed away I found the lyrics written in one of my Grandfather's journals as it was also a favorite of his . Funny how that happens. Anyhow in light of all of the tears shed over the last few days and those yet to be shed for the losses ,the message especially seems fitting somehow . So here it is;
In the face of such pain and suffering in the world and the tragedy that struck in Connecticut , it can be hard to have faith and to hold on to the belief that there is good in the world. The joining of our global family in prayer yesterday does show me that there is in fact still good. The stories over the next few day will be about the individual who perpetrated this horrific crime, but also about the heroism of the folks involved. The teacher who hid her students away and stood alone to face her death, and all who stepped up to help and stand for the fallen. Those are the stories I will remember , when I pray for these families .
Morgan Freeman said;"You can help by forgetting you ever read this man's name, and remembering the name of at least one victim. You can help by donating to mental health research instead of pointing to gun control as the problem. You can help by turning off the news." We cannot repair the damage done or turn back the clock, but evil will only triumph when we stop believing .
I believe for every drop of rain that falls
A flower grows,
I believe that somewhere in the darkest night
A candle glows,
I believe for everyone who goes astray,
Someone will come to show the way,
I believe, I believe.
I believe above the storm a smallest prayer
Will still be heard,
I believe that someone in the great somewhere
Hears every word,
Every time I hear a newborn baby cry,
Or touch a leaf, or see the sky,
Then I know why,
About 7 or 8 years ago I had a fairly bad wreck . Came off a horse at high speed and when I landed, I landed most of my weight on my left elbow. To add insult to injury , my wrist snapped back and whacked me in the jaw and then if that wasn't enough the horse jumped on me. All in all a crappy afternoon!.
I got up, got back on the horse for a few minutes and then headed to Emerg . BECAUSE MY HAND AND ELBOW REALLY HURT and my wrist was at a funky angle .
Unfortunately I also had a really large swelling and a hoof print on my thigh(wore shorts to the hosp because pant kinda hurt) SO as much as I argued that I was concerned about my arm, the doc was petty focused on my leg.Eventually convinced them that I was hardly likely to have walked in , far less have gotten back on the horse with a broken femur !
So they agreed to X ray the wrist , nothing broken but as it turns out later the impact of my jaw on my ulna caused enough trauma that I now have a bone cyst there .Found that out a while back. My elbow has also been giving me trouble for some time , and when I told my new doctor about all of this she sent me for more x rays , as she was concerned there may have been a break that was missed.
The good news is , dropping my entire body weight at speed on my elbow didn't break anything (as the title says ,GOOD BONES )
The bad news is I have severe arthritis in that joint . So I went in today to have a cortisone injection to relieve some off the inflammation and pain. Hurts like a sonovabuck! to get it done , but once the freezing was on board it felt pretty good. A little sore tonight , but I should see results if I am going to in the next few days .
As for the horse that threw me? well things happen and I have to say while I have long ago stopped riding her . She is non other than
"That Richie mare " Broodmare royalty !
Dam of such sweet good minded foals as; Classy,Wilder, Phoenix, Justus ,and Quinn
She is better at that job nuff said.
So other than work and doctors appts in has been a quiet week, hopefully will have a new interesting post soon.
That is where I have been the last couple of days. It was held in Westlock. A bit of a hairy drive up there and back Friday with the roads still poor from Wednesdays snow .
This is my table , I was set up in front of a wonderful Mural done by the Art Society there, I felt a little bad because the mural was hard to see with me in front of it, but it is where I was told to go.
I was very careful to place my things well away from it so as not to damage it ,but (in the one really yucky moment this weekend) a lady took it upon herself to approach and demand I move further out . I explained I could not move much further without blocking the aisle , and that I was well away from it . She said "well when you weren't here kids were running behind your table and there is not room for them to do that." ???? How about we don't have kids running wild around a display???
Anyhow I agreed to try to move slightly further, and she grabbed at my table to yank it forward , upsetting several of my cards !
I kept my cool and calmly advised her I would take care of it . But I have to say , after the nasty roads and all the set up, along with not loving crowds , I was ready right there and then to pack it in! I almost felt like crying!
A little later the organizer stopped by and said hello , she was fine with where I was and made no further comment.
Sales were pretty slow this weekend , not just for me , but for many of the vendors, there was a lot going on for kids and also a hockey tournament so that may have played a role , or just the weather . Several vendors packed up early last evening , and also today some left just after lunch .
My sister came with me today , (so that lady is lucky she didn't pick on me again! not with my big sis there to defend me!!) Again slow sales but we did have a nice time , spoke to lots of folks and did a little looking around ourselves . All totaled I sold 3 books and a few cards , and had a nice day. But dang!!! am I tired tonight !
Staying home to do a few things around here tomorrow , may get a start on my inside decorating , then Martin is home Monday till after Christmas!
Hope everyone had a good weekend
Stay safe and warm my friends
the forecast was for scattered flurries accumulations of up to 1-3 cm. Well when we had 25 cm (1 foot) they revised the forecast!LOL
Phoenix is not impressed but he wasn't cold, the snow was piling up on his back but not melting he does have a windbreak and shelter of trees but he was too busy watching the show , with me and the snow blower
From red roan to snocap in 1 easy step!
The snow stopped around 2 ish and it turned into a pretty day
Da Boyz ,
Having a blast
And say what you like about herding dogs, this is the best farm dog EVER !! How many dogs do you know will break trail in the deep snow for you ?
OK ,he did wander a bit but it was better than nothing
Looking to the long walk home
"C'me on mom, do I need to pack it down more for you ?"
I am awfully glad he did , that deep snow is like walking through glue and not kind to my sciatic/psychotic nerve
Nearly there , Phoenix is back to himself, guess he is kind of a snocap after all
Skeeter is about done with this project snow past my belly?? I don't think so people!!!!
I cleared some snow then Marc came home and got the loader going to clear the roads ,I had driven my little Rav 4 up to his place to break trail and for the first time ever I was pushing snow with it !
So, I have mentioned before that Eurus is here for a while to recover from an injury. He is doing well and seems mostly pretty comfortable, the wound is healing nicely ,but he is still a little well, off on his hind end. Angela was out this weekend for a visit , and brought him in for grooming and just to check him. He seemed really good so she popped up bareback to try him. Still seemed fine no hesitation or off steps ,but still just not quite right . Tina, from On the Spot Equine therapies was here this afternoon to check him over,and did find some issues(I missed the treatment as I was out catching Johnny,but I will tell you about that later )
It seemed to go well and he was back out in the pen. A few hours later I saw him lying down, sternal , and totally relaxed ! Might not seem like much but since he has been here has not layed down other than to roll or down and up, he tends to rest with one hip leaned against the rail fence . So to see him down relaxed and comfortable was great, also watched him get back up, total fluid movement no stiffness or hesitation! Looks like the Quiet Giant is on the mend!
(I know I have used this pic often ,but it is a good one! )
As to why I was out grabbing Johnny Handsome, well I mentioned a while back that he can be a bit of a fool when we are trimming him, only on the one hind leg, otherwise he is a good boy . This horse is so well behaved and kind on every other level I baffles me that he can be such a tool when it comes to one foot being trimmed, he starts to get iffy on the first hind but the second BAM! He is BAD . Anyhow, I mentioned this to Tina and his history (Badly contractured hind leg as a foal ) and she thought there was a good chance she could help him. Well glad I asked, my poor guy! he was out on his hip, and shoulder, neck and jaw! , don't I feel like a jerk!
In my defense other than the farrier issue he has never offered to resist or complain under saddle , he is willing and honest so... who knew? Appaloosas are notoriously stoic as well. He was funny though , Johnny doesn't really like the barn, was never in it much and at 14 he is fairly convinced that is where he will go to die! He went in and stood , but shook like a leaf and fussed ! When Tina stood up on her block examine his back and adjust his hip , well then ! he buried his head in my chest and just froze! Poor boy! After the treatment though he seemed much calmer seemed to realize she was helping him, and wow! when she adjusted his shoulder what a difference in his range of motion! This horse was good before, he is gonna be awesome now!
Not much else going on at the moment , thinking I will lay low today and maybe look at taking some of my Christmas collections out and getting started , or maybe there is a good movie on...
For the past month on Facebook I have been involved in a daily Thankfulness journal . When I started in on November 1, I assumed ,I am an optimist, this should be a cake walk! NOT! Negativity and stress fill our worlds these days and it has somehow become the norm to be grumpy and nasty ,hurtful and blaming others in the world. The first few days were easy, then the weather turned, I had some i
ssues with aches and pains and suddenly
,I was struggling to find something to be thankful for. I persevered and forced myself to find the "happy " in each day, and by the end of this challenge I found myself looking forward to my journal entry ! It became my time in the day to say "What went right" And reminded me to find the simple joys my wonderful life has to offer . So now that it is complete I plan to still daily take a moment to find the positive in my day and I challenge all of my friends and family here to do the same! Journal it , or don't but take a minute or 10 every single day to look at it and ask"WHAT WENT RIGHT?" Stay safe and warm my friends