Sunday, May 31, 2009

Redneck Bale Moving

I'm still working on getting the videos of Paula being a butt (literally) up, but I thought I'd share my little adventure in bale moving without the proper equipment.... Thanks so much to Rhodes Paint Horses for donating a bale of grass hay for Empress! The problem was, getting it over here.... My roundbale mover is still out in the middle of Kansas (waiting on a trailer ride out here), and I don't have a flatbed trailer, so I had this bright idea to just stick it in the back of my truck and I'd somehow pull it out.

Well, the bale was a LOT bigger than any of us thought!!


A LOT BIGGER!!!

My first task was to get it into the pasture, which I don't have proper gates for yet. It was a tight squeeze but I got it in there!
I then backed it up to the tree--about the biggest tree out in this pasture area. I was hoping it was going to be big enough....
The dogs were too scared to get out of the truck. I don't blame them!

So I got a rope around the bale...
And got a tow chain around the tree and tied that onto the rope. I had no idea what would give first: the rope, the chain, the tree, my truck, or would the bale simply slide off? Oh, so many things to go wrong here....

Empress was laying down not too far away. She didn't seem too concerned.


Fabian, Bambi, and Hope were lined up to watch the impending disaster. Fabian couldn't stand to look directly at the train wreck waiting to happen....

Paula had high-tailed it out of there... (sidenote, why is it that these boys have to hang their weiners out everytime they see a camera? Completely inappropriate LOL)


I get into the truck and start slowly moving the truck away from the tree, wondering what will happen. Empress is still not concerned at all....


And it WORKED! The bale moved! See, Empress knew all along....


Problem, though....


Oh well, I just had to cut apart my rope. I got pretty lucky that's all I lost! This was the only thing of note on my truck--just some leftover hay!



Got the rope and twine all cut off and Empress woke up and went over to check it out...and eat. All ends well on this episode of Redneck Bale Moving!! Get Er Done!!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Empress Update

Empress is still gaining steadily and her topline is finally filling in. She is perky and seems to be very happy. However, I'm more concerned about her feet than anything else at this point. Her feet, appearance-wise, look pretty good now that I've lopped off all the rest of that extra toe, and she's been walking a bit better since then, but by now I would have thought that she'd be pretty comfortable and she's just not.

I spoke to my vet, who said he could tell by my description that she's suffering from chronic laminitis. It's a low-grade form of laminitis that basically means she never really healed from a founder episode, which could have been caused by her lack of hoof care or if she had gotten into something she hadn't, or if she has developed an insulin resistance and was grazing on the spring or autumn grasses and it just hit her hard,or it could have been a combination of things, or like what my friend went through, absolutely no sign of any cause at all. Because I really don't know what happened, or how bad it was, I'm going with the safest route.

Today I'll be setting up a dry lot pen with a bale of last year's grass hay (thank you, Angela for donating this to Empress!) and I'll pick up a bag of the special no-carb/no-sugar grains so she can still get her vitamins and fats and not lose weight or be too hungry.

I'll be setting up an appointment for next weekend or the one after to see my wonderful vet Dr Randy. If she's still bad off, we'll do radiographs to see how bad the rotation is. If she's improved, then he'll give her some chiropractic adjustments to see if we can't help her improvement along (he said having to walk like that for so long really gets them all out of alignment along their neck, back, and even knees--poor girl!!).

This poor, sweet mare has gone through so much. Please keep her in your prayers. If we can pull her out of the chronic laminitis, she could end up having a very good, healthy, pain-free life. If not, then at least she's had a pretty good life these last few months, with a full belly, lots of attention and love. These next few weeks are critical.

Below is a video I took of her last evening. Because of Paula's big butt (more next post, including some pretty funny video to lighten the mood :) I had to just stand outside their pen and walk with their hay. Empress's expression is from being ticked at Paula when food is presented, not from pain. In Paula's videos you can see while she does hurt she doesn't pin her ears like she does here....

video

You can see she is stiff--legged and she keeps her weight on her back legs for the most part. She's not nearly as bad as she was when she first came in, but as pretty as her feet are right now, she should be walking just like Paula is here.

I will keep everyone updated. Thank you so much for everyone's support, kind words, and prayers for Empress. I wish more than anything else that I can give this great gal a happy life and will do everything I can.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Wow....


My little boy's all grown up :)


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tonight's Special: A Bit of Irony with a Side of Humor

I had an appointment this afternoon so I got home late. I worked with Laramie a bit and groomed her and JJ, then after everyone was fed and settled in I grabbed my camera. I always want to capture the peacefulness of the evening. I try, anyway....


Charlie decided to help Empress clean up any grain she spilled. He sure is a lot of "help." Not sure she sees it that way, but she's too polite to say anything.



Took a quick shot of JJ--I think he's gaining some already. I'd love to see him a lot heavier, though. He's such a pig--he eats up every single bit I give him. Laramie has already maxed out and is leaving a touch of grain and alfalfa behind each feeding, but I think JJ is like a teenage boy--"full" is not something he recognizes!



Got this shot of Bambi, too. I adore her....



So we get ready to go in and I decide to take a picture of some of what I accomplished over the weekend. I got this area all cleaned out behind the house (but I still have a lot of weedeating and landscaping to do). I made a whole village of ants homeless when I picked up some of the old landscaping sculpture the previous resident left behind. They weren't very pleased. I think I heard one of them put a curse on me.



Unknown Plant: While weeding out the currently vacant flowerbed I encountered this little fella. I didn't think it was a weed. Anyone know what it is?



KNOWN Plant: I pulled some of this up on Sunday without realize what it was until I already had a handful--a bare handfull of it. I washed my hands immediately and didn't have any problems...until today. That was my appointment--I have poison ivy all over my face! LOL! Somehow I missed a spot while washing and scratched my face, or got some on my clothes which came in contact with my face--something (I am convinced it is the curse of the homeless ants). My hands are perfectly fine, but my face itches and hurts.


The funny thing is my dermatologist gave me some oral steroids. The reason that's funny is when my back was out I begged my regular doctor to give me some oral steroids for the inflamation and he refused. I guess I should have gone looking for poison ivy!

Anyway, I looked up while taking pics of the plants and there was my 11 year-old "kitten," Harley. He's enjoying the open windows. I am trying so hard not to turn on the A/C yet. Must....save.....money......


Sophie found a ball to play with. I have no idea where these things come from!


She has a short attention span....


But all I have to do is say "You guys ready to go in?" and this is the attention I get (they know that means FOOD!!!)



We all have some supper and settle in for the night. "Dogs and cats living together--mass hysteria!!"

Monday, May 25, 2009

You'd have to be Crazy...

...not to love this mare:











This is Crazy (Seza Impressive One), a 23 year old mare. Yes, she's 23. She's maybe the one horse I know in this world over the age of 5 that has never been neglected and starved. She's a lucky girl! I got her from my friends the Coles near Topeka, KS. She now lives with my friends the Morgans in Venus, TX. We think that Crazy is going to come here to become Eddie's live-in girlfriend. She seems to be barren now. I'd love to get a foal out of her (she has an awesome production record), but most likely she's done. She'll make Eddie happy, though--keep him content while I hold off breeding any of my own for a while. She'll be a gorgeous pasture ornament :)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

You've come a long way, baby

My wonderful friend Vicki Morgan sent me pictures of the girls today. I have been so lucky to have my mares find amazing homes with such great people like Vicki Morgan and Kim Noyes. I never, ever have to worry about my girls when they are in these ladies' very capable hands. I know they're getting better care than even I gave them and I can't put into words how great that makes me feel!

It is such a special treat to get to see Sully (Solomons Reward) looking so healthy and HAPPY! For those of you who don't know Sully's story, she was literally rescued off a slaughter truck by LaDonna King. Sully had an amazing pedigree and LaDonna knew she was special--she just needed a chance, so she negotiated for her and then let me know about her. I drove out to get her and nothing could prepare me--it was obvious that poor Sully had been neglected a very long time. She not only was emaciated and broken down, but she had scars all over her. Who knows what hell she went through? I contacted her breeder and he was appauled. Sully's full sister had been a show horse and always well cared for, while Sully ended up almost slaughtered. This really epitomizes the problems in our industry--good horses end up in bad places all the time.


This is what she looked like when I got her in January 2007:

She was such a sad creature.

Fortunately for Sully she was saved. I was able to rehabilitate her in time to breed her. She had JJ last year--I adore him and can't thank Vicki enough for sending him to me! I miss Sully but know she's in the very best hands she could possibly be in. Having JJ lets me have a little piece of Sully here with me :)


Here is Sully today (here is what just made my day!):


Obviously happy, healthy, and as wide as a brick house! lol She is loved and well cared for. She's come a long way from that sad, slaughter-bound creature. I think everyone who has ever met Sully knows she deserved to have this kind of life--be happy and well fed. She's so extremely intelligent and would do anything in the world for someone who treats her right. That's all she really ever wanted, it seems. I hardly think that was too much to ask :)

I Love My Place

I'll post lots more pics tonight. It's gorgeous out, so I want to get outside. I do have to brag on my place a bit. I love it out here. I could spend weeks out here and never go into town (oh wait, I DID do that! Ha)!



Here are my roses, going to town, love'n life, soak'n up the rays....pay no attention to the weeds and overgrown grass behind the curtain (another project I hope to complete this weekend)....




And I do get visitors from time to time.... Do you see it? No, NOT the trash (you'd think that we wouldn't get trash blowing in way up here but we sure do--which I walk around and pick up on a daily basis). No, sillies--the deer! One of them crossed the driveway yesterday while I was coming back with water and Sophie about jumped out the window to get it. Not sure what she'd do with a deer if she did catch it, but somehow I don't think she plans that far ahead.


Does this look like a planner to you? She looks more like a spur-of-the-moment gal to me.


Did I mention I LOVE this place? One of my favorite things to do is after I feed, just sit on the lawn and listen to the horses munching away, birds singing and frogs croaking. It's so peaceful...


Along with hauling water and getting a load of first cutting alfalfa yesterday (yay), I got the turnouts done. I still need to put up the kind of fence I really want (4-string white electric rope), but this will do for now. JJ and Laramie split the entire area you see if this picture back to the fence (about 20 feet past the last bird house). I'm really happy with the space they have. When I get the stalls done, they will go out here at night, then be brought in during the day to get ready for show. JJ will be on a maintenance plan--I just want him to look good and grow, but Laramie will be fit for show.



Here is Laramie's before shot. I'm looking forward to fitting her. I think Darlene said it best: "I freakin love this filly!" :)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Randomness

Is that even a word?


Anyway, here are a few random items I want to mention. First, I had to show everyone Laramie's little sister--most likely 5-Star bound in September. She is such a stylish little girl!

(and yes, that is Ebony, Laramie's momma in the background. Yes, she is black and no, NONE of her fillies for poor Kim have been, but at least they've been awesome :)

My friend Sandra has two more horses she needs to sell. These are really nice horses so just let me know if you're interested in either one of them. Chance is pictured first. He's by a son of Ima Cool Skip and out of a Mr Conclusion bred mare. He's HYPP N/N and I've seen him first hand--he's structurally a VERY nice colt! He's a typical Mr horse--he's going to take a bit of time to really mature, but once he does--wow :)
Sandra also needs to sell this super nice hunter pony prospect. I've seen Tucker in person as well and yes, he is a pony and yes, he is colored, but he's also quality--has a great mind and is build so nicely for hunter hack. Sandra has considered training him and selling him for quite a bit, so if you're interested snatch him up now as you could be the one turning the profit (I sure wish I could train English and Hunter Hack better). Take a look at dreamhorse--quality hunter ponies are still selling!
In the final picture for tonight's post, these kids aren't for sale, but maybe they should be? Anyone want a bunch of lazy, good-for-nothings? Well, maybe I'll keep them, although it would be nice to have my bed back :)

Monday, May 18, 2009

A Glimpse into our Evenings

I got home from work late. One of the VP's decided we should have a 4:30 Monday meeting--not quite as sadistic as a 4:30 Friday meeting, but almost....

I got home, got caught up on a couple of emails and then headed out. This week is trimming week. Everyone needs some hoof trimming--some more than others due to my back issues. Tonight I started with JJ as he came in right when I was just getting healed up, and when the farrier came out I didn't feel like JJ and Laramie were going to be safe enough for me to handle for the farrier (I was so touch and go I couldn't chance anything at all), so they didn't get done. I know, it's bad, but we're getting it taken care of now. JJ was tonight and he did wonderful! Such a good boy...such pretty feet....


Then JJ got a good grooming. I decided to snap some quick pictures before feeding time. Isn't he a handsome boy?



He needs a lot more weight on him. He's not bad off, but could look better. He has the same problem Paula does right now--he's using all his calories to grow up instead of out!



JJ is such a sweetie....
The boys dropped some subtle hints that it was feeding time....

Even Sophie thought it was dinner time....
There goes Fabian, over to the feeding area....
Think I should get the hint?
I walked over to grab the feed pans and the girls were waiting, too....

Bambi to Laramie: "See, if we stare long enough and flutter our big, brown eyes, the humans might bring us even more food!"

I love these girls....
JJ and Fabian see something interesting (Fabian has no personal boundaries)....
Oops, forgot--must stare at human until food appears.
Paula decided she'd munch on this morning's left overs until her dinner arrived.
I told ya, she's gotten lanky! Hopefully she'll fill back in, soon. When she does she's going to be one big girl. I'm so happy she had another growth spurt!!
Everyone got fed and as I turned to go into the garage to put back the buckets, I saw my roses in the setting sun....
I love my roses....
Samson and Sophie get in their last few minutes of playtime....
Doesn't it look like she's getting ready to take off? Either that, or she's Yoda's dog doing the twist...
I sure wish I had her energy....

Charlie found a dinosaur bone to knaw on....

Almost time for Samson to go to his pen for dinner. Sophie and Samson aren't quite done yet. They seem to be comparing dental work....
And Samson does his polar bear impression..."Rwarrrrr!!!"
And Sophie, in turn, does her Fluffy (from Harry Potter) impression, minus the other two heads...

How could anyone not love this face?


That's it for our evening. Goodnight folks!