6 Days…

When I realized it had been 6 days since my last post, I started singing “6 Days on the Road”…the Sawyer Brown version, just because it’s fun.πŸ˜‰

Let me catch you up on what’s been going on around here…

Mostly it’s been yard work…still cutting and putting up small bales of hay. I’m getting a cute little pile in the garage. Like I’ve said before, it’s not much, but sometimes, all you need is a little bit of hay to keep an equine face busy while you work with them on other things…or you just need a little hay for them to pick at while the grass grows in spring. That’s what this is for.
It’s handy to have small amounts for those times.

This past weekend it was finally dry enough to get our septic system fully repaired. Thank goodness. That was a hefty, but extremely necessary, repair. And, this should last us many many years…especially since we have a fence around the end unit to protect it so that it can’t be hit with a tractor…which is what happened to the one we had fixed *before* we bought the place. The damage was long-standing and near the frost line, so, realistically, we’re lucky we got 2 1/2 years out of it before needing to have the repairs done.

I’ve been working on edit 3 photos sessions that I need to get done.
1. The demos we watched at Cloverdale Forge.
I’ve shared a few from the set, but I still have 20 or so more to finish up.
2. Jousting. From the same day, we went from the Forge over to the Medieval festival and I have 40 or so images from the jousting to finish.
3. A portrait session I did with a friend from the Stable…this one I want to get done so bad, because the images are **gorgeous** and I can’t wait for her to see them…I gave her this as a teaser shot, but really need to sit down and get the rest done…
KB1 bw wm
And then there are the pictures of the animals here!
For example, I have the following series…animals playing in water…

Daphne goes all in savage when playing in the hose!

Daphne goes all in savage when playing in the hose!

Did you know piggies like to play in the stream fro the hose?

Did you know piggies like to play in the stream from the hose?

Nigella has a drink from the hose.

Nigella has a drink from the hose.

Washing her face a bit.

Washing her face a bit.

Rinsing out her mouth...

Rinsing out her mouth…

Just enjoying the cold water on a hot day. :)

Just enjoying the cold water on a hot day.πŸ™‚

And Ruby…

"The Hell, Dad!! Don't spray me!!"

“The Hell, Dad!! Don’t spray me!!”

Oh, I told y’all about piggies and bags?
Here’s Nigella having a munching good time:

"My bag."

“My bag.”

"Whut? Pigs like toys. This my toy."

“Whut? Pigs like toys. This my toy.”

I missed when the 3 of them each grabbed a piece and started shaking their heads side to side like dogs…oh, it was funny! lol

Another picture of Ruby. Just because she’s pretty.πŸ™‚

Ruby Portrait
Finally, one of Sable and Ruby racing.

<3

❀

Later this week, I’ll share some shots The Kid took of Astrid while I was scratching her back. Astrid really gets into the scratches and back rubs, let me tell you!
I’m also hoping to be able to share some Lawn Pony shots with y’all. When we take Cookie on another excursion into the yard, I’m going to get The Kid to photograph it..
Y’see, Ms Cookie had her very first experience coming out into the yard a couple weeks ago. It was really hard for her. Gates are terrifying, and she was sure she was going to have to go somewhere. She didn’t know where, but she was sure she was leaving. *sigh* Poor damaged horse. lol
When she finally got to go back into the pasture, she darn near lost her shit. Actually, she tried to run me over to get through the gate, which led to a lesson in manners and how to *politely* return to the pasture.
Finally, she figured it out, listen to Mama and you’ll get back there sooner. Act like an ass, and you’re stuck outside the pasture…where something might get her and eat her or take her away.πŸ˜‰

When she finally did walk back in politely, she waited ’til the gate was closed, spun and went straight backwards until the end of the lead rope. There she half reared and honked like a goose.
I promptly died laughing at her.
She just thought I should know that yard was scary and she could have died. If I really cared about her I wouldn’t make her do that ever again, because “coulda died Mama, I could HAVE DIED!”

Recovering Lawn Pony, back in her pasture...AKA The Drama Queen.

Recovering Lawn Pony, back in her pasture…AKA The Drama Queen.

Pasture Dragon

Sometimes, we find strange things in our pasture.
Sometimes, it’s garbage, or metal, or old barbed wire buried in horrible places.
Sometimes, it’s fun things, like toys from previous owners kids.
Like this…

I call it a Pasture Dragon...I don't actually know what it is.

I call it a Pasture Dragon…I don’t actually know what it is.

When Hubby found it, I said “Pictures!” and he proceeded to put it on Sable’s bum.

Nestled perfectly on her bum...

Nestled perfectly on her bum…

It’s like the Pasture Dragon is flying!
Wheeeeeee!!!

Sable, however, was unimpressed:

Really, Mother?!? Really???

Really, Mother?!? Really???

I thought it was cute.
LOL!!
The Pasture Dragon might have to make a few appearances in other places too…πŸ˜‰

Happy Food Tastes Better

That is the new Farm motto:

Happy Food Tastes Better

We’re keeping “Where horses get a second chance & the humans never give up” as well. We’re just adding on, now that we’re growing meat animals and have laying hennys.

Ihop June to August 2016

Ihop, the day she came home, and last week…

As a quick aside…we had thought we’d lost Ihop when we lost the henny to being egg bound. Nope, turned out to be a different hen, and I found Ihop shuffle-hopping about the henny yard last week. She’s been really good at hiding that shuffle hop when she wants to!

Any ways…
Happy Food Tastes Better expresses in 4 words how we feel about raising food animals.

Peeper having a drink of water.

Peeper having a drink of water.

I am, have always been, and always will be, a firm believer in knowing where your food comes from, and how it is raised. The new motto says that without the long-winded discussions.
Though, I am always happy to talk about knowing your food, knowing your farmer, and creating your own sense of food security. These are things I can talk about for hours!
πŸ˜€
But, that’s another post for another day.
Today the important thing is this:

Happy Food Tastes Better
We at Midnight Calico Farm are dedicated to growing Happy food.

Nigella Piggie seeing what the Food Lady has brought her.

Nigella Piggie seeing what the Food Lady has brought her. It was a thistle…Nigella Piggie loves thistles.πŸ™‚

 

World Photo Day

Today is World Photo Day, celebrating photography, photos and the people who take them.
Here at the Farm, I celebrated last night, with a little impromptu moonlight shooting…

Moon over Cookie

Moon over Cookie

The moon was huge, coming up over the horizon. And moving fast too.
In the 3 or 4 minutes it took to line this shot up, it went from touching the horizon to where you see it over her back!

Moon over Cookie in black and white.

Moon over Cookie in black and white.

Moon over Bella

Moon over Bella

Moon over Bella in black and white.

Moon over Bella in black and white.

Moon over Bella's bum. :)

Moon over Bella’s bum.πŸ™‚

Once again in black and white.

Once again in black and white.

So, in celebration of the day, go out with your cameras, my friends, be they point and shoots, phone cameras, or dslrs…go out and take pictures, make memories and celebrate that we have such amazing technology to capture the images that speak to our Spirit!
πŸ™‚

Happy World Photo Day!

Farmiversary

3 years.
3 amazing, glorious, wonderful yet difficult, trying, faith testing years.
That’s how long we’ve been here on Midnight Calico Farm.
It all started because of this one…

Cookie, m'dear, it's all your fault!

Cookie, m’dear, it’s all your fault!

Oh, Hubby and I had always talked about moving to the country. Dreamed about it. But, until I saw this Girl ^^^ sitting in Rescue, waiting for her person, it was just that.
A Dream.
And then I saw her…and I said to Hubby, we need a farm, because that is my horse. She’s mine, no one else’s, she belongs to me, she belongs with me. So, we either get land, or we have to pay to board her. Either way, I’m getting that horse!

That made the search become real, more earnest…no more half-hearted “Well, maybe we should check that out” stuff. We needed to find something! That’s how we ended up here…and I chased after getting my Girl Home to me.

Of course, 1 horse normally doesn’t do well alone. So, when we went to see Cookie, Hubby chose this character…

Ruby

Ruby

Oh, and she’s a character alright!!πŸ˜› Fits right in here at our crazy little funny Farm.

And then…when we weren’t looking for a 3rd horse, we had only gone out to visit with these two and finalize payment, we met this sweetheart…

Sable

❀ Sable❀

She chose us. Or, more like she chose The Kid.
She knew who she wanted, she knew who her person was, and thankfully, we listened. Our lives would not be the same without her. She is an amazing mare!

Since then, Astrid has joined us…

Astrid

Astrid

We’ve added 19 laying hennys, 15 meat chickens, our million mile an hour Farm dog Daphne, 3 piggies and a whole herd of cats.
We have a huge garden (that hopefully next year I will get planted on time!), fruit trees and bushes, and a huge field that we hope will yield many geese this year! Especially since we leased it out and the farmer planted wheat…geese love wheat…and we love geese to eat.πŸ˜‰

We’re still working towards bison…that is the ultimate goal.
A small bison herd.
A good foundation bull, a handful of well-bred cows, and calves to grow into eventual Freezer Campers.

We’re getting there. This life, it’s a work in progress.
You have to love it to do it.
And we do!
I hope you all love to follow us and will stick with us for the coming year(s).

Happy 3 to us!
πŸ˜€

It’s That Time of Year Again

Ima little grumpy today…why, you ask?
Well, because it’s that time of year when some people work very hard to guilt horse owners into taking their horses for all sorts of reasons excuses…

~ I have no time for him/her! You’re home all day!
~ I can’t find hay!
~ Hay is too expensive!
~ You have 4 already, what’s one more?!?

*sigh*
This time of year is exhausting…especially with all the times I have to say “Nope. No room here for more animals.”
Since the Girls came home, I’ve gotten 5-6 requests a year. I don’t know if this is a normal thing, or if I have a big target on my farm, or what.
Fact is, I have 4 horses, 3 pigs, 34 chickens, 1 dog, and a lot of cats…I don’t need more animals.
And, not someone else’s cast offs.
Look, if you’ve gotten a horse but then discovered you have no time, or can’t afford it, then sell the horse.
If you can’t sell the horse because of shitty manners, or poor handling, well, you have a few options…
1. Lie and sell the horse as kid broke (DO NOT DO THIS…If you do this, you are a grade A asshole and someone will get hurt, and not the someone who should…YOU.)
2. Take it to an auction to sell. Knowing full well that there is a very real possibility of the horse going for meat. It is what it is.
or
3. Put it down.

Sound cold? Maybe it is.
But I’m tired of the emails, the FB messages, and odd phone calls from people telling me their sob stories.
I have taken on 1 horse as a hardship case, and that was for a very good friend…and it wasn’t for any of the crappy excuses listed above…
I won’t do it again, and certainly not from some schmoe who just doesn’t want to do the work to find/purchase hay or for proper placement/sale.
It’s easy to say “Aw, you have 4 what’s one more?”
One more is another 8000ish lbs of hay for the winter…
One more is another 200ish lbs of beet pulp…
One more is another 100ish lbs of flax…
One more is another 2000ish lbs of straw for bedding…
One more is another $50/hoof trim…
One more is another $1000 that has to be added to the emergency vet fund…and let me tell you, after this past spring/summer, the vet fund is hurting. We had some big bills for horses that needed attention…but that goes with owning horses. You treat what you can yourself, and when you can’t you call the vet.

So, tell me again, how easily I should take on your “one more” because you can’t be bothered?
Right.
Nope. Not doing it.

I used to handle this much differently… I used to refer the people to the local rescues, give them contact info for hay (Never, ever my personal supplier though. Nope. I guard that contact info with my life! lol), and offer ideas for how they can work extra jobs for money to keep their animals.
98% of the time those things were met with resistance, and a few folks were downright assholes about it. I’ve been called nasty names, had guilt trip layed on me, been told they know where I live and they’ll just drop the animal off…

Crazy, right?
And I am not involved in any sort of Rescue!
I’m just a horse owner.
Yeah, I blog, I have a FB page for the Farm, I share a ton of pictures of my horses…but nothing anywhere that would indicate I want/need/am willing to take in unwanted animals.
People are nuts.

So now, I just say, “Look, ’round here, the only animals we are adding to the Farm are ones we can eat. What’s your horse’s health history? Could we eat him/her if we had to?”
I don’t typically hear back from them, and if I do, it’s with disgust and profanity.

I hate doing that. I really do.
Horses are not food, IMO.
Yes, I know, hypocrite, because we’re going to eat the piggies and some of the chickens. Got it. Don’t need the lecture. Whatever.
To me, horses, while livestock, are not food.
But, if I have to make people think we eat them so that maybe they might do the right thing by their animals, instead of trying to dump them off, well, so be it.
If nothing else, maybe they’ll stop trying to lay the guilt and responsibility on me.
I have enough on my plate, thank you very much.