Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas Torture Pics

Poor Dogs.

Why must we do these things to them?

Because we can!

"if i must look at u, i keel u"

"mee too"

"i tink mine's too tight"




Saturday, December 12, 2009


Ha, I just had a good laugh. I read this post just moments ago and had to shake my head. Someone, whether it be Mother Nature or Father Christmas sure pulled a funny one on us this year. After a surprisingly mild November, (and I mean temps in the 40's during the day and lots of sun) winter arrived in full force. It's -6 degrees outside right now. It has been that cold since the 2 day blizzard that left us with over 16" of snow.

I am not amused.

I like winter. Or parts of it. I like the days like that post back in '07. I like the snow (to an extent) and the cold (to an extent). But this all-out-hello-here's-winter that smacked us in the face sure hurt.

Yes, I'm complaining. It's my right. But, like anything, this too shall pass. The temps are forecast to be in the upper 20's and what a relief that will be.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

It's Here

Winter, that is. In it's full glory. 19 chilly degrees this morning. An icy dusting of snow. Steady breeze from the northwest. Canadian air. Brrrr.

Austin is not enjoying this weather.

And Austin is not enjoying having a camera in his face.

I eetz cammra!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Honky's New Smile

Say Cheeeez!

We had Dr Shaefer out yesterday to attend to Miss Honky Tonk's teeth, most specifically her nasty underbite.

I'm proud to say she did really well and behaved as well as a little ass should under heavy sedation. In addition to the "sow mouth", she had some points and hooks that needed to be taken down too.

For those of you not familiar with all of this, it's just another part of the necessary maintenance required to keep our equines healthy. The horse's mouth is designed with the upper teeth set just slightly wider than the lowers. This, combined with a slight circular chewing motion, can allow the teeth to wear down in an uneven fashion and cause discomfort to the horse's mouth.

Those points and hooks can get to be razor sharp and do a fair amount of damage to the horse's cheeks. I don't know about you, but I'd be awfully crabby if my mouth bled every time I ate.

A proper mouth should line up like the sketch below, but poor Honky's doesn't. The front teeth are used for grabbing and tearing the grass from the ground (and fingers from your hand if you're not careful), but since hers don't line up, there's nothing for the bottoms to wear against. The sketch also points out frontal hooks, of which, Honky had four fine examples. Since her bottom jaw is pushed forward, her first molars on the bottom also had nothing to wear against, so they kept growing uninhibited. The picture above is a good shot of the frontal hooks.

So the vet sedates the horse (or ass in this case), holds the mouth open with a scapula, sets the weary head in a saddle - not that kind of saddle - a dental saddle, and grinds the points down with a powered grinder. It's essentially a modified Dewalt drill. The grinding wheel is small, maybe the diameter of a quarter, and you can press it to your hand without discomfort. But it sure does a number on those ivories.

Does it hurt?

Well, I didn't feel a thing. But seriously, a horse's nerve endings stop about right at the gum line. Everything after that is just tooth. Not long ago vets used to use manual rasps, but most have gone the way of the power rasp. The manual rasp can be clumsy, and at times can do some damage to the mouth as it slides off of a tooth and crashes into the back of the jaw. The power rasp gets the job done much quicker.

Here's Honky's molars after a good rasping. The points and hooks have all been taken down, and her dental "table" is much more flat. The molars are designed to be uneven and wavy to grind up their food, so the dentist has be sure not to make the table too flat.

That nasty underbite will never go away, but with preventative maintenance every two or three years, she should be one happy little ass.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Kirby's Big Day

We took Kirby for his first ever under saddle trail ride today. Just a short 45 minute ride to see how he'd do. And he did wonderfully. We've ponied him out on the trails a few times this summer, and Sara rode him around the pasture at home twice, so we thought we'd try the real thing.

He got to climb some really big hills:

He had to pose for the camera guy:

He even got to lead for awhile:

On one part of the trail he sure got fascinated with the stumps. He had to check out the first one real close. He bit it, spit out the chunk of wood, then snooped every other stump on the trail:

He sure seemed to enjoy his first ride:

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Salsa Anyone?

Tis the season. Who's got the chips? And the margaritas?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Hungry Monsters

This is what I'm greeted with every morning. Hungry faces. See that red thing over Honky's shoulder - that's the hay feeder. It's empty. As you may be able to tell by the two faces staring at the back door of the house.

It's not a great pic because I took it from the kitchen window. I don't dare turn the light on in the kitchen or they all start to holler.

Each day this week has started with a heavy dew, almost a fog. It rolls in right before sunrise and burns off shortly after. It's very peaceful. And very wet. The soybeans look like they have frost on them. But I don't want to talk about frost yet.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Garden Update

Things are growing like crazy. We've had about 3 weeks without any rain, but I've been watering the veggies daily. The peas are just about done, green beans will need to be picked soon, and I picked some table onions and some beets last nite.

The flower gardens have done well considering I don't water them. This Jackmanii Clematis has really taken off this year.

Even the lilies baking against the the barn wall have done well.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Cleared For Takeoff

Miss Honky Tonk was just a bit miffed at the bugs last nite. But she's still adorable.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Nap Time....

Yep, that's darling wife catching a snappy nap on good ol' Hank. He tolerates just about everything.

Until he's bored with it:

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Honky and the Farrier

Our farrier was scheduled to visit yesterday, and Honky is getting much better about standing for him.

She's still unsure and untrusting of many things, but she's come a long way.

She puts up more of a fuss with her fronts, but there weren't any major problems yesterday. I think one of the most difficult parts is having to work that far bent over. She is a tad bit shorter than the horses.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hay Time

Monday morning the Hay Guy (my neighbor) came pulling up the driveway with this beautiful oldie.
This was his father's 560. He got it completely restored last year. I felt very lucky to have it used at our place to run the elevator to load our hay.

After getting the elevator hooked up, I just waited for the hay to arrive. And arrive it did.

They use basket style hay wagons. Crazy big baskets that load themselves and unload with a pull of a lever. This keeps the wagons in the field behind the baler where they are hard at work collecting more bales.

All in all 500 bales of first crop were delivered, sent up the elevator, and stacked all neatly in the new barn.

First crop was late this year. June's weather was not the best for haying, so we waited. We had about ten days of sun, wind, and low humidity. Couldn't ask for better weather to dry fresh hay. If the rains come that they are forecasting, second crop should be just around the corner. I hope we have good weather for that harvest, too.