Sunday, November 28, 2010

Our little Tye

Tye hinted very strongly that he's yet to be a Blog Star!  Well, I can take a hint...
Tye hinting for his "blog time"
MOM, I really gotta go...
Tye hints pretty strongly anytime he needs a need to be met.  Thankfully, going potty is one of them!
Tye is our senior guy here age 13.  Though he's smaller than any of the Cardigans, all but Onyx allow him to hold the title of "ruler of all things".  Tye is rather obnoxious about this, so Onyx would prefer the opportunity to kill Tye.  I'm serious.  This being the main reason Onyx is Camryn's dog.  Anyone care to guess what mix Tye is?  Bet ya can't!
He's actually Christopher's dog, Tye and Chris have been best buds, since Chris was 16.  Due to Chris time in the Army and the fact that his place has to many stairs for Tye to navigate to go out, Tye continues to live here.  Tye, knows Chris is his boy.  When Chris returned from his first tour in Iraq.  Tye had everyone in tears with his greeting.  Shoot I'm tearing up even writing about it.  Tye is always an enthusiastic greeter.  But, when Chris walked in the door, he went totally bonkers.  He was jumping up and down, throwing himself at Chris just screaming with joy.  No one can tell me animals can't profess and show their love.  He'd never acted this way before or since, Tye knew and understood that his boy had been in serious danger, and had made it home to him.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday

Besides having our one day delayed Thanksgiving feast, hubby took advantage of Black Friday.  Our computer had started showing it's age and needed replaced.  We knew what we wanted, so hubby got online shopped around till he found the deal he was looking for.  New puter, that is so much faster.  AND he picked up photo shop for me.  I'm off to play with that a bit now....

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks

I count my blessings daily, though days such as this maginifies your daily blessings.  One big one today is my daughter Jillian comes home from her Army Base in Hawaii just in time for Turkey!!  She's a wonderful person, and I don't say that just because I gave birth to her.  She just is.
My Hubby, I knew our union was blessed from the start, it continues to be so.  He's the best of the best.
My two sons Christopher & Adam, vastly differant in so many ways.  Yet, I couldn't ask for better boys.  Their sense of humor can sometimes be a tad overboard.  Can't complain overmuch as they got that from me.
My Mother who despite some health problems this past year keeps the faith which inspires all those around her. 
A warm, cozy, home filled with wonderful furry canine kids.  And a barn that houses my wonderful Camryn.
Life is good, and I am truly blessed.
Please don't forget our soldiers on this day and everyday.  Also their families, been there done that myself.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Something is in the woods Mom...

Something apparently was in the woods.  Camryn could see it, of course human that I am, had no clue.  Having a camera stuck to my face, aimed at Camryn, I would miss it!!!  Neighbors have mentioned a 10 point buck that's been looking for a mate, he's been hanging out behind Camryn's pasture a lot.  Sorry, no Mr. Big Buck pix, just Camryn as usual.  Don't you just love her winter woolies, and her tail is just awesome.  Perhaps Mr. Big Buck thinks so too?  They are the same color after all!!!  I always get a chuckle when she appears to be wearing black socks, there is a muddy area in the pasture which has the only remaining grass right now.  
Something's back there Mom!

Just over the hill Mom...
Hurry, let me out so I can see it...
To late Mom, it's gone

Take note of the leaves in the woods.  That's what her pasture would look like, except I took the leaf blower to it three times!!!  Yes, I'm serious, the neighbors think I'm nutso, I probably am.  I'm hoping by having the pasture clear of all the leaves the snow melts, and spring rains will be able to drain back to the ditch and relieve some of the flooding we get back there.  Fingers crossed on that one.  Also as her pasture has so many trees, being leafless will help me spot deadfall after winter storms to keep it cleaned up.  This is the longest we've been able to use her pasture, normally it's been to wet come Nov. to use.  The grass is of course gone, but she enjoys it so much.  Not sure how to explain it to Camryn when she's stuck in the paddock area till spring.  She's gonna be bummed big time.
PS these pix were taken just prior to my last leaf blowing.  Should've taken some after shots I guess

Saturday, November 20, 2010

from poop 2 compost

Been busy doing some before winter chores.  Anyone wondering what to do with your darling horses daily contributions to society (manure)?  We call it Camryn Compost at our house.
This is what we do in pictures:
manure pile before tilling

manure pile after tilling, we tarp to help it cook

before adding Camryn Compost

After adding Camryn Compost
Another before

Another after
I could show more as I have way to many flower beds.  Fortunately Camryn is quite happy to manufacture her lovely compost.  Lots of back breaking work, who needs a gym when you have a horse and flower beds!!!  The veggie garden this year gave us 6ft tall tomato plants!!!   We're done for the winter.  Come spring we'll be turning over and loading more Camryn Compost in the back yard gardens.  By tilling it, you can actually fool people into believing it's mulch as there are few that appear to be actual road apples.  The dogs LOVE to eat the manure, tilling actually helps disguise it even to their noses!!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

bitblanket, riding bareback, new game...

     With winter coming I've been getting a flashback of my little brother with his tongue stuck on a metal ice cube tray.  I think he'd been dared? Not certain, though most likely by me!!!  Anyway, thinking of that, I'd been contemplating a bit warmer for Camryn.  I had no intention of putting the bit in my armpit guys!!!  I knew I could make one using rice and heating it in the microwave preriding, but what if it didn't retain the heat from house, to barn, to bridling?  What if it were to hot?  Found one online that utilized those hand warmers you can pick up in any sporting goods department.  That would mean needing to keep stocked up on those, didn't feel like it was worth extra trips if I ran out, or having to buy them perhaps frequently.  Or missing a ride on a cold but, otherwise perfect day if I didn't have one.  I found, they have an electric bit warmer, so ordered one.   Though it isn't brrrrrrrrrrr cold yet, I decided to give it a try.  You wrap it around the bit, plug it in, then groom, & saddle.  Says not to leave it for longer than 20 minutes.  Today, as I used a bareback pad it only took 10 but, still the bit was warm to my hand.  I LOVE IT, and am pretty sure Camryn will be appreciative as well.
     Felt lazy, so decided to simply ride bareback today.  I have one of those fleecy bareback pads, borrowed from a friend who never used it.  I think it's much comfier for Camryn having the pad between my bones and hers.  Though we both have our own padding as it is!  Perhaps it's from having ridden three hours the other day, perhaps it's my joints getting older?  But, riding with a saddle doesn't seem to cause my hips to rotate as much as without one? Of course Camryn being a Drafty Hafy Gurl, has something to do with it I'm sure.  I do have bursitis in my hips and could really feel it today.  As we rode a while, I did loosen up and didn't hurt quite so much as in the beginning.  We just walked and worked on a new game.  I'm certainly not a balanced enough or strong enough rider to trot bareback, with sore hips to boot.
     Began on the ground with a ball that she can pick up.  On the ground we got as far as 20 feet, then she'd hand it to me.  I follow along and stand nearby to take it from her.  Riding I just asked for her to touch it, as leaning forward to take it bareback just didn't seem like such a good idea LOL.  Though I was wearing my new helmet!  We'll try to get a video once we're further along and perhaps have hubby man the camera rather than myself. 
Supposed to rain later tonight for the next few days.  So, I bought a little bike horn while grocery shopping today.  If we can't ride, may as well play useless games right :)  Camryn can "honk her own horn!" 
Reason for so much time on my hands, I work at a greenhouse which is seasonal.  Last week was our last week.  Not sure if Camryn will feel lucky to have me home so much?  Wonder if the house will stay any cleaner?  The barn won't suffer that's for sure!
Off to dremel my sons dogs toenails...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Beautiful day to ride again :)

Who would've thought we'd have such gorgeous weather here in Ohio, this time of year.  Awesome just awesome, got together today with neighbor Danette and one of her boarders for a lovely ride this afternoon.  Another friend Meredith trailered her QH mare over to join us.  What fun we had.  Just hanging out together with the horses, literally at times.  We'd just stand with the horses circled, they rested while we chatted.  Camryn would alternately rest, then flirt with Eclipse.  I tried to explain that guys prefer their women playing hard to get LOL. 
 Had the opportunity to show off Camryns skill of picking things up for me.  I'd drop my crop for her to pick up.  Everyone loved it, and felt that it will come in handy if any of us drop something on the trail LOL. One who'd previously scoffed at our clicker training now finds it amazing :)  We ended up riding and/or sitting for three hours alternating going thru the woods, back to the arena, thru Camryns pasture over and over.  Camryn's cones were out in the pasture, so she HAD to pick a few up LOL.  I've created a monster, Danette has poles for pole bending set up, Camyrn thinks she needs to pick them up too!!!
Did have one worrisome moment as Camryn and I rode over to Danette's.  We cross a bridge to get there, Danette had planted some shrubs on our side of the bridge where we enter.  Camryn knew right away that those things weren't there yesterday and was quite concerned.  I'd ride her towards them just till I could feel her feeling concerned, then circle back a little ways, .  Let her stand and think then start again, added some click and treat when I knew she was plugging her brain back in.  We were getting closer each time, without forcing the issue.  After about 10 minutes she was able to ride by them and over the bridge.  She did give those bushes a dirty look however.  On the way back over with the others along, she was sure the bushes were laying in wait, passing them but, with more dirty looks.  After that anytime we crossed she was just fine with them.
Meredith apparently has been around some problem Haflingers, in the past.  I'd noticed her watching us on and off quite a lot.  Didn't think anything of it, turns out she was amazed at how "mellow" and "easy" Camryn is.  Camryn is usually the most reliable, and the only one who will ride with no problem in front, rear, or middle. 
Not to say or imply she's perfect but, she sure does fake it well with others.  She's also the only one among them that doesn't feel the need to squeal when greeting close up, she's quiet, ears forward and just wanting to be friends.
Love, love, love my gurly gurl 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Grandpuppy pix/great day to ride.

If there is anything cuter than a Cardigan Welsh Corgi pup, it's five of them.  Can't you just smell their sweet puppy breath?  The black & whites with tan points are all girls and marked just like daddy Onyx.  The blue merle is a boy, marked just like his mummy Tanzi.  Born Oct. 13 2010.  Sorry they don't reside here, I just have Daddy.  Not sure how many may still be available but, if interested in finding out contact Debbie Brooks  Both Mummy and Daddy are Champions, Onyx also has two agility titles along with his novice rally title.  So these pups are sure to have beauty AND brains :)  I'm going to wait till their a few weeks older to pay them a visit. 

On the Hafy front, what a great day to ride...First Camryn and I spent an hour riding our pasture and perfecting picking up the cones and handing them back to me.  She's got it down nearly 99% success rate.  Must say it's easier without the camera!!!  We noticed Danette riding her mare Dakota, Camryn was interested but, continued on.  We'd just gathered all our cones to put away when Danette hollered over asking if we'd like to ride thru the woods together.  Well, DUH!!!  Put the cones away, made sure Onyx couldn't follow then rode over to meet them.  Poor Dakota, or should I say poor Danette as Dakota is in season again.  She did great till we got over to the boarding barn where there are five handsome geldings.  Dakota planted her feet and refused to move.  Camryn and I tried riding away hoping she'd be game to follow, tried that a few times, nothing.  We rode over beside them, Camryn reached her head over to Dakota's and must have whispered something, because as we turned to walk away Dakota finally followed.  We headed over to our barn, Dakota once again grew roots not wanting to move.  Took some doing but, finally she followed us and we rode over to her home barn.  This happens whenever Dakota is in season, if Eclipse her gelding honey is along she's much better but, still will stick not wanting to move.  Camryn did great, though we did have one spook when Danette's cat Leppi leaped down from a wall near us.  It was dusk and Leppi is gray so I don't think Camryn had seen her.  Camryn recovered quickly and attempted to follow Leppi to get a better look aka sniff.  We hope to ride again tomorrow, I can't wait.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

attempt @ click training video

I guess this video could called a comedic attempt at, riding, training, treating, shooting video with a little odd narration thrown in for chuckles???
So got my new helmet, and resumed what Camryn and I had been working on the day of my "oomph" from the saddle.  The day if my "oomph", our goal was merely riding to then touching the cones.  Today, as I noticed she was holding on the cone we might "attempt" to add her handing it back to me in the saddle.  Camyrn being 1. very smart & 2. extremely food motivated caught on amazingly fast.  We both, "me mainly" have to work on our coordination.  Probably (definitely) the fact that I was rider, trainer, treater, & cameraman added to my incoordination?  I hope so anyway!!!
Hubby has been in Canada on business, so this is how I entertain myself!  While he just shakes his head and inwardly chuckles @ what Camryn & get up to together.  I know he secretly enjoys it, as a happy wife is a good thing to have about right!  My children think "Mo-om, you have no life", I think they need to realize that "Mom's horse & her horsey friends" keep me from being a perpetually need Mom ;)
There are two videos, the 1st I accidentally quit taping and had to start over.  While doing video 1 I realized that Camryn noticed when I dropped the cone back on the ground, and rather than heading to another, she preferred to stay there and pick up the original again.  You'll hear in tape 2, I solved this by placing the cone she'd just given me on her ample rump and allowing it to fall off as we progressed to the next cone.
 Please hold the applause...

PS I dropped my riding crop in the pasture, Camryn  helped me in the search.  I asked her to pick it up and give it to me.  Wish I'd got that on video, hmmmmmm could be an upcoming video.  Hopefully Camryn disagrees with my children in that "I need to get a life!"

Monday, November 8, 2010

OUCH!!! New helmet ordered...

Camryn and I were playing having a great time in the pasture.  I'd put several cones down, would ride out to one, she'd touch & get her click/treat.  We'd progressed to her picking the cone up, just not to the point of reaching back for me to take it.  She did enjoy throwing them a lot though!!!  Anyway we were at the back of her pasture a few feet from the woods, when it happened.  Camryn isn't a spooky horse by any means, to her new things mean the possiblity of something perhaps being edible.  As she swung her ample self around, I proceeded to do a one rein stop.  As this was happening I could feel the spook disapating and she'd begun to swing back around to take a looksee (could be food you know), I was also thinking "I can ride this out no prob".  Technicly I did, the saddle didn't.  One of my habits (besides wearing a helmet), is to recheck her girth at the mounting block.  Well, I didn't so as she swung one way, the saddle slid down her side causing me to whack my noggin pretty good.  Sound effects from within the helmet probably sounded worse than it actually was!!!  I sat up, Camryn was standing looking down at me, I was surprised at the look of concern on her face.  Last time, I'm pretty sure she laughed!!!  My head hurt, my legs felt like rubber, I looked around to see what caused her spook.  About 6 feet from us was a huge gray/white hawk enjoying a squirrel dinner.  I'm guessing he flew right over us, grabbing it as it climbed a tree.  Decided the old saying about getting right back on the horse, wasn't wise if you had a concussion!!!  Camryn and I walked back to the barn, untacked, then she joined me in picking up the cones.  She does pick them up and hand them to me from the ground by the way.  The hawk was still eating, Camryn just watched with interest as it flew away when we walked up.
Oddly enough, hubby had just fallen at work hitting his head two days ago.  He's in Canada today, so I texted that we were a concussion couple!!!  Also that I was getting a new helmet!!!  He called right away to make sure I was OK.
Ordered the Tipperary Sportage 8500 Helmet online.  None of the tack stores in the area carry them and I'd heard good things about them.  Shame I'll have to miss the good riding weather till it comes.  But, as I was wearing my helmet, I'm uninjured so am able to ride again which is a HUGE BLESSING!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Busy weekend. Camryn spa day

This weekend, been busy trying to have things ready for winter.  Brought in bedding for the winter, the bags vary in weight from 75lb to 95 lb.  We were able to fit 19 bags on our smallish truck and ATV trailer.  Should be set for quite a while on that.   Bless Dear Hubby for loading and unloading these.  For my part I placed the pallets in the barn for them, then pulled the bags forward for him to lift. 
Today, I burned the last of the brush pile I've gathered from various wind storms in the pasture/paddock.  I've been clearing our woods the past few years, got the dead fall I've gathered this year burned as well.  Woods are looking so good, nice and rideable.  Hubby is planning to fence, but have a few groundhogs I need to evict before that happens.  Also have a few large cherry trees back there so I'm rather hesitant to allow Camryn back there period.
On the Camryn front, didn't ride at all this weekend but, she did have a spa day. Conditioned her bush of a mane, as well as her tail.  Camryn doesn't have the traditional Haflinger mane, not sure if it's from her genes or the fact that she gets sweet itch, hence rubs it a lot.  Though it's not long, I love the way it stands up in the breeze.  When she shakes herself it just goes every which way. Just realized I didn't get pix of her lovely tail prior to braiding!   Last winter I didn't braid and regretted it, it was long enough to drag the ground, deep snow caused snowballs/iceballs on the ends, then mud.  Not winter yet, but was in the mood to experiment and pratice braiding it anyway.

The End

Friday, November 5, 2010

What does rain mean?

Around here rain means wet horse.  No clue why, Camryn chooses to stand in the rain when she has a perfectly dry barn to stand in.  But, 9 times out of 10 that's just what she does. I hang her hay nets in the barn, her water is in the barn, Camryn has no problem eating and drinking there, as soon as she's done outside she goes.   Maybe prior to being here, having being kept in a tie down stall she feels since the option is there, why waste it standing inside?  She still snoozes under the magnolia even though as of this week the tree is bald.  Her winter coat when wet gets these pretty waves all thru.
Wonder if she'd self rinse?
K, Mom enough with the pix, just hang my hay net and be done with it!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Cardi content

Seems I haven't included the Cardis enough in the blog for some people (Kristi)!!!  So, today I'll focus on the baby of our Cardigan Welsh Corgi clan.  Ivy, aka Mirage Steadfast & Loyal is her name, playfulness and cuddling is her game.  Ivy was one of two litters born during my eldest son (Chris) 2nd tour of Iraq.  Steadfast & Loyal is the motto of the Army 4th ID, the Ivy Leaf their insignia, so this is were her name comes from.  Both litters name theme of course had the military in mind.  I gave each new puppy person a list of names chosen by my sons platoon from which to choose their pups registered name.  I haven't been doing the dog show thing for a few years, so Ivy's Championship is in limbo though she does have one of her majors along with a few single points towards that.  Occasionally Ivy get to come back to the barn to play, not often as she can be a tad bit horse clueless.  Ivy gets so busy showing off for Onyx that she races herself behind, in front of and under Camryn.  Fortunately Camryn is fine with this and seems amused!!!  As you can see in Ivy's photo's she has an impish personality, she's a friend to one and all and a wonderful ambassador to her breed.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Snow in forecast

We have snow in the forecast later in the week.  I've been taking advantage of the past few days and riding Camryn after work before it gets dark.  We've stuck to her pasture area as since the leaves have fallen, Camryn can easily see the neighbor horses and  has chosen a pathway she feels is the best way to get over to them.  Unfortunately her chosen path, involves some trespassing which I'm not keen to do!!!  While she has never "just taken off" with me to get there and I've never "felt" that was her intention.  Keeping her off Jacks property is difficult.  When her mind is set on something she can be a bit difficult to persuade.  Amazing how easily Camryn flexes, that is until she knows doing so turns her away from her intended path LOL.  Just tells me we still have work to do, and as fighting with an over 1000 lb drafty mare probably isn't such a wise idea.  I instead stay within the fence on days I can feel a fight might ensue. 
One new thing I've managed to do while saddled is open/close the gate from her paddock into the back yard.  Now that we've done that once, we'll be able to work on that and hopefully perfect it.
Till next time...