Sunday, January 31, 2010

A 'Little' Place to Call Home

Now that Eddie's ordeal is heading in a positive direction, I can think about some other things going on in my life, like trying to find a place to live!

There's a very small house out on my dad's property that is similar in size to the old Federal Schoolhouse pictured above. There's an article about a couple who purchased this lovely little place and restored it into quite a beautiful, albiet tiny, house.

It gives me a lot of ideas for the tiny house out at my dad's.

The upstairs is almost identicle to this house, at least in structure. Right now it's filled with dirty old boxes and a crumbling fireplace, but it certainly could look as cute and adorable as this little showplace does.

Even the stairwell is very similar. The stairwell in the little house at my dad's goes along the end wall and the window is rectangular rather than circular, but this sure gives a person a lot of ideas!

The floor is VERY similar!

In a house this small it's important to maximize every inch for storage. I love these little cubby-holes.

I'd even want to add on an adorable little porch like the one they restored below.

Now, I'm thinking, if two people can share a little space like this, then I can certainly live in one with two dogs and an antique kitteh, right?

Here are some other ideas I pulled off the internet:

I love, love, LOVE the backsplash here! Talk about adding color and depth to a room as usually utilitarian as a kitchen!!

This orange living/dining room below is to die for.

Warm, cozy, inviting and although it's very small it's not overly crowded whatsoever.

Here is a sample of the usual small-kitchen organization. I love the spotlights above. I think it makes the kitchen look like it could double as an art gallery!

I found this picture and immediately saved it. Having a dividing wall double as storage is simply brilliant.

I love this bathroom. It's old fashioned, small, and simple and it embraces all those things wholeheartedly.

I've had two people whose opinion I greatly respect point out that living in such a small space is probably not the brightest idea. I do tend to romanticize things and then realize later that other people (who are more level-headed than I) are right. I do have to say I love looking at these pictures, though, and I love the idea of having very little to clean, very little electric and gas bills and very little to pay for once it's finished.

It's probably all just a pipe-dream or really not a very bright idea to begin with, but it's really fun to gather the ideas, though!

Very Good Progress!

I am both relieved and happy to say that Eddie is doing much better than expected. He is still on a daily dose of bute and will be for a while, but a minimal amount seems to be keeping the pain at bay and his trimming today went very well!

I really took off a lot of hoof off the left side, but it was neccessary to try to enable him to stand correctly. Technically the left side should actually be lower than the right to compliment the angle of his leg, but I hit a touch of blood as it is. It just wasn't feasible to go any further.

The red stuff in the 1.31.10 pics is iodine to treat the thrush. Unfortunately he has it bad and deep. It is true thrush as it has that characteristic odor. I removed enough of the frog to keep it from being sealed up anymore. Hopefully this will help clear it up.

Below is a comparison of the angle of his leg with the trims. I have to say I'm pleasantly surprised we've gotten this far. There is still no hoof wall to support him so unfortunately he still tips to the outside way too easily, but I'm very happy to see him at least have the ability to straighten his leg.

And don't worry! I didn't forget about Sir Charles! Here he is looking all spiffy and groomed.

Well, he was all spiffy and groomed. He still looks a lot better than he did. I think he feels better, too. They did a terrific job with him.

Last but not least, I had to share father and son with their heads buried in their feeders:

If Eddie really is doing ok I'm not going to breed any mares for myself this year. I feel my situation is way too unstable and precarious to be adding any additional responsiblities. So...the plan is to try to reintroduce Eddie and JJ to the joys of fellow bachelorhood (cue the theme to "The Odd Couple"). They were once buddies and it looks like they perhaps will be again. When I came out today JJ was the only horse from the pasture standing by dear old dad, so I moved JJ up to the pens and later this week they will only be seperated by a fence. Hopefully they get along pretty well!

I still plan on getting down to Texas and picking up Eddie's old lady Crazy to be his live-in companion, but for the time being she's in great hands with Vicki and JJ and Eddie (once he's healed) can spend some time together just being boys.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Justa Quick Update

No pics tonight, sorry, but I did want to mention that Eddie is doing very well with bute now. I will have to keep him on his meds until he has some support to his hoof wall, then hopefully when I wean him off the bute he will be back to his old self. Tomorrow I'll be doing a bit more trimming on him, complete with pics.

Charlie got his grooming today from Petco. They did a great job with him! He's so clean and poofy. Pics tomorrow--I promise!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Speaking of...

First of all, I want to thank everyone who has left caring messages concerning Eddie. I have some sad news, but first, let's try to look on the bright side. Eddie has come through hard times before, and if he's taught me anything, it's to enjoy life as much as you can, no matter what happens.

Speaking of enjoying life, Sophie always does! It was such a pretty day, as long as you didn't have to be outside or go anywhere!

She wasn't too sure about the snow, but stayed nice and warm in her sweater.

Speaking of a nice warm body, Marley doesn't seem to mind the snow at all. He doesn't understand why everyone is so bundled up! Just look at that lovely face.

Speaking of lovely faces, this is Bunker, an aussie mix that Darlene owns. She is probably the sweetest dog in the whole-wide world. She's quite fuzzed out here....

Speaking of the fuzz, Charlie and Marley are out on patrol, but they aren't quite sure how to get through the gate. They just look longingly, hoping someone will pay them some attention.

Speaking of longful looks, I got this shot of Paula and played around with it--I think it looks kind of cool in black and white!

Speaking of Paula, she's really been my rock lately. I'm seeing more and more that it was meant for me to have her. She gives me hugs now. It's a good thing, because I sure need them.

Here's another sweetie: Laramie. She's been so good out in the pasture. She's just not a complainer. I promise, sweet Laramie, you will have a place in a showbarn someday....

Speaking of sweeties, here's Dakota out all by herself. She does let me know she would prefer to be inside a nice warm barn.

She's doing fine, though. I think she's next in line for a Power Pac as her topline hasn't been as strong as what she usually is. Her legs are doing VERY well, though!

Speaking of Power Pacs, can you guess who this is?

This chunky butt is JJ! The Power Pac really worked wonders on him. I'm so much happier with how he's looking now.

And speaking of chunky butts, we can't forget about Bambi.

I had a hold of Sophie and Bambi wanted to check her out. They ended up hugging, silly kids. It's too bad, this was the best shot I could get. They were so cute.

Speaking of cute, or rather just one handsome dude, here's the man of the hour.

I spend some time with Eddie today, and unfortunately my heart is very heavy. I was with him for about 10 minutes and every 30 seconds he has to shift weight. He's in visible pain.

His knee is enlarged, which is expected to occur somewhat over time, but this has really thrown me, the significant change even since the last pictures I saw of him six months ago. His foot really effected his knee. This isn't swelling, it's calcification.

Although he lost a little weight on the trip he still looks pretty good overall. It's just his leg....

I plan on picking him up some bute tomorrow along with some ulcer guard to protect his stomach. Hopefully this will help keep him comfortable until his foot gets back into shape. I might get some supplements as well and see if that helps him. I'm just sick over this and tonight it finally hit me, this just might be the beginning of the end. I'm not ready, but I'll never be ready to say goodbye to this great horse.

I just keep telling myself to take it one day at a time and to remember the strength Eddie had to survive what he did years ago. Along with his inspiration and his daughter Paula's hugs, we'll deal with whatever the future holds.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Update on Eddie's Foot

Unfortunately this is not a happy or pretty post. I wish I could only concentrate on the positive, and I guess I could put these things aside and not mention them at all, but I think as sad as neglect is, discussing it can be a very positive teaching tool, on so many levels.

It also gives me a place to vent, in all honesty. I will try my best to report only the facts, but please excuse me if I inadvertently have an emotional tone to my writing. For those of you who know how much Eddie means to me, you will certainly understand.

As I mentioned yesterday, when Eddie returned home I sadly discovered his foot had not been trimmed in a very long time. It's impossible to tell when. I was told back on November 7th that he was trimmed then (which would put him at 12 weeks), then I was told on December 29th that he was at 6 weeks (which would put him at 10 weeks), then I was told on January 12th that he was at 41 days (which would put him at 8 weeks now).

I think it's pretty clear that none of these were true. The above photo is today, without any work. The photo below is the same, showing the lack of support he has now that the hoof wall has collapsed. His toe is very long as well.

This is a back view. I drew straight lines to give a point of reference.

Below is the hoof cleaned out. The black circled area is packed with thrush. The red circle indicates where the hoof wall has grown into the frog. The purple circle indicates where the hoof wall has folded over and collapsed. The shelf is gone.

Below is my first pass at trimming him. I've cut away the hoof that had grown into the frog, opened up the collapsed wall and trimmed down the wall on the left as much as possible and gave it a significant roll to ease any pressure at all that it was putting on his knee (this is the inside of the foot and it was pushing his bent knee outward, putting even more pressure on it).

Obviously there is a very long road ahead of us. His frog is just plain gross--it is rotten and deteriorated, so I have a lot of cleanup to do, plus I have to keep trimming on his toe and the left side, while encouraging the right side to rebuild the shelf it once had (to support Eddie's weight).

I understand that some people don't think that hoof care is all that important and certainly with some horses, especially during the winter when hoof growth is naturally slow, trimming is not neccessary until 8, 10, or even 12 weeks. I've honestly had broodmares that had self-trimmed their entire lives and they were so seldom handled before I got them that I didn't bother trying to retrain them to accept trimming. I did try on some and I got as far as a dislocated thumb and stopped.

So why is this important? Why am I so disappointed in the condition of Eddie's foot?

For Eddie, hoof care IS important. He has no room for error. He can't get a new leg when this one goes. He can't stand on his hind legs so I can trim his other foot. Frankly, he is on borrowed time as it is. Below is the report from K-State detailing the injuries he sustained before I got him.

It says, "Diagnosis: Severe arthritis of left front carpus with accompanying carpal varus and fusion of right front pastern." The report is from August 6, 2004--over five years ago.

Five years ago Eddie was diagnosed with severe arthritis in his bent leg. One day that arthritis will become too painful and I will have to euthanize him. It's not if, but when. Dr. Arnold estimated that time would come when he was about five. I've been incredibly blessed that Eddie is now approaching his eighth birthday. We've had a lot of luck, but I've also been diligent on his care--especially this bent foot.

So you see, it's not completely out of line to say when this foot is neglected, it takes years off his life. It's disheartening to see all my hard work to keep Eddie as sound and healthy as long as I possibly can go down the drain, all because of pride, excuses, neglect, apathy, or all of the above.

The following pictures demonstrate how the angle of the hoof wall affects the pressure on Eddie's knee. The first picture is from Texas, when he was in my care.
Notice the bend in the knee is minimal and you can see the stripes in his hoof is almost completely verticle.

Below is before today's trim. Compare the angle of his white leg with the photo above. Compare the stripes in his foot. Compare the length of the hoof.

It's clearly apparent that the length and angle of his neglected hoof has caused additional strain to his knee.

Here is today's "after" photo.

Again, still a long ways to go, but you can already see an improvement in the angle of his leg.

Thankfully Eddie is a very strong boy and I pray that I can get things back to the way they were before he left my dear friend Vicki's care (who understood the importance of his feet so much that she had me draw diagrams for her farrier). I'll never really know if this episode has shaved any time off his lifespan. At this point all I can do is try to rehabilitate the foot and enjoy every minute I have with Eddie back home--where he should be :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

He's Home!!!!

It was so good to have Eddie finally home today.

I've missed him so very much, and the sense of relief I feel is palpable. He is here. I can pet him, hug him, care for him and make sure he has everything he needs.

He's in pretty good shape. Megan fed him well before he left and made sure he had everything he needed. I appreciate her help more than she could ever know. Unfortunately she couldn't get one thing fixed that had been neglected for longer than she had been caring for him--his hoof.

The hoof wall (on the right) that Eddie exclusively depends on to support the entire leg has completely collapsed. To say I am disappointed is a massive understatement. I worked for years to get Eddie's foot in shape, to have a strong shelf of hoof wall to support his leg properly and now it is entirely gone. I have no idea how long Eddie's knee has had to bear the brunt of all his movement since he has no support at all, so I pray this hasn't caused him to break down sooner than what he would if he had had proper care.

Eddie stayed out at Dad's tonight because he was just too sore after the bute wore off to travel any more. I plan on taking my farrier tools with me tomorrow to see what can be done. I will update on tomorrow's blog.

If it wasn't for the disappointment of something as vital as his hoof it would have been a wonderful day. I also got my show boots for this season, a pair of black, square-toed Noconas. I've already picked out my show shirt--a teal tunic. Along with a black hat, chaps, and slacks, it should be a really nice outfit to show Paula in :)

Thankfully Eddie is a very strong boy. Dad called me late this evening to tell me Eddie has perked up and is wondering where his mares are! Keep fingers and toes crossed that I can get his foot back in shape and we can move on to more good times ahead!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Who Nose?

What's it all about, JJ?

Laramie thinks she nose, but she's checking to see what Peppy thinks.

JJ's not sure, so he tries to eat the halter. He's a stress eater.

Lady, how about you?

Oh wait! JJ nose!!!!

He'd like to move to the head of the class, please.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Eddie's first foal of 2010

Timmery named her Merlot, which I think fits!

She sure looks like an Eddie baby....

...thick, big, long, solid legs and those stockings and that blaze.

Momma is obviously sore, too. Poor girl.

What a pretty filly.

I'm so happy for Timmery, after all she's gone through, that she finally has this gorgeous girl. She's solid but AQHA eligible, so hopefully she can get her into those futurities she entered and show this pretty girl off!

This is also the one year anniversary of when I killed my back. I'm so glad there was something good that happened today--a new beginning of sorts! These things make me so grateful I can continue on with the horses, that Eddie will be home soon, and maybe in a couple of years we'll welcome an Eddie baby of our own again.

She's HERE!

AQHA/APHA filly, born this morning!

Cupie had a hard time delivering this monster of a filly, but she was a pro, especially considering this is her first! Someone reported that "she is very big, very cute, and very, very, very big!"

Congrats to Timmery and family on a safe and healthy filly. I will post an update once I hear if she's got any qualifying marks. She does have that trademark blaze, though :)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

General Updates

Well, this is a boring post because right now I'm just in a waiting mode. Waiting for Eddie...

and waiting for his first foal of the year to be born.

Click on the image to go to Cupie's webcam. She's getting closer everyday!

I also updated Eddie's webpage. Click HERE to check it out!

He's delayed due to weather. They're stuck in Montana at the moment, but hope to be here Wednesday. Shields Family hauling rocks! They've really kept Eddie's well-being the top priority and that's all that matters to me. Click on their link to the left to get a quote to ship your horse!

In the meantime, I've unfortunately got to put up my new saddle for sale. It wasn't until I tried it out that I found out it's a 15" instead of a 16" as I was told. It certainly looked like a 16" and it's my fault for not double-checking, so nothing against who I got it from, but sadly it's not going to work for me. The stirrups were also cut off. I'm 5'8" and they are just a touch too short for me, so if you're a petite woman this saddle would really be perfect for you! Asking $600 obo(including pictured specialty stirrups and brand new backcinch. I would entertain trading it for a 16" saddle similar in quality, work, barrel or an older show saddle.

This is really a fantastic saddle. It is very nice quality and very comfortable if it would just fit me. Not sure what "bars" it has but it fits Paula perfectly and she has fairly low withers. It would not fit a high-withered horse.