Farm Yard Excitement

Wednesday was an exciting day here.
It didn’t start out that way, but shortly after The Kid got on the school bus, things went a little…interesting.

After I let the birds out, fed and watered them, I came in to finish up some photo editing and uploads…check out the newest album of Great Train Robbery photos here:
Cookie’nCream Photography

So, I’m getting ready to upload, windows are open, it’s quiet…until I hear the mares…squealing and whinnying.
At first, I figure it just them playing…they do that, every now and then, squeal and be silly with each other.
But then, it happens again, with a bit more urgency.
That’s when I got up and looked out the window…

I saw what I thought was a huge dog running into the yard.
It was no dog.
It was this:

Ain’t he something?

I have no idea where he came from, or who he belongs to.
I did learn mighty fast though, that he was a stud.
That’s what all the squealing was about.
Oh! Yay!
Said no full size mare owner ever when a mini stud arrives out of nowhere.

So, the first order of business was to get the little goober secured, safely away from the mares and safely away from the road.
*sigh*
Not fun when you’re one person with a grain bucket to lead a horny little devil *away* from 3 increasingly horny girls.

I needed backup.
I called out Hubby.
Once he got home, the plan was to lead our gentlest, yet most interested mare across the driveway, and let him follow her into the front pasture. Once they were in, Hubby would lead Astrid out and I’d close the gate.
It all went to plan, until he stuck his nose right up Astrid’s business and she double-barreled him.
Hahahahaha!!

He went rolling over backwards, popped up and started prancing…
“See!!! I *am* man enough for you, Mare! I can take a hit!”
Thankfully he wasn’t hurt physically…maybe his over inflated pride was, but his body was just fine.
LOL

Hubby led Astrid back across the drive, while I closed the gate…little shit tried charging me, but got a sound whap on his pretty little nose from the lunge whip.
Yup, I get it.
My mares make you want to bring your milkshake to their yard, but it ain’t happening!

By this time, we were all tired, fried from the sun, Sketchy Pete (which is what I was calling him) needed some (more) water and damn, but I needed a beer!
But, still work to do…
I had called the RCMP earlier and posted his picture on FB (hoping someone in the area might know him and come get him), and now had to get a hold of Animal Control.
Hubby went off the visit the closest vet clinic, hoping maybe they knew the little jerk.
Nope, nothing there either.

Thankfully, Animal Control got back to me in pretty short order, and once they had a trailer lined up, they came and we got him loaded up.

So far, I don’t know if anyone has come forward for him.
Too bad, if they haven’t.
He was a cute little thing, and I’m sure with a gelding, he’ll have great potential for a kid’s pet…

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13

Monday was Cookie’s 13th birthday.
I had in my mind for a while, long before she passed, that I wanted to do a cake smash with her.
This was supposed to be her year for it…

Instead, her herdmates enjoyed her cake for her.
Seems like it should have been a bittersweet shoot, but it turned out to be great fun. ❀

Hubby offers some cake to Sable…

He mighta smooshed it into her muzzle a wee bit…being it’s a cake smash and all… πŸ˜‰

Ruby’s turn…you can see icing on Astrid’s muzzle…

That tongue…lol!

And then Hubby set the cake down, so all 3 could enjoy it at once…

Ruby:
“Y’know what I like?”

“CAAAAAAKKKKEEE!”

And then our dear sweet Blonde Girl had a moment with her friend’s halter…
πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

Sharing for Wordless Wednesday with Comedy Plus, image-in-ing, and Create With Joy.

Place in the World

Do you ever wonder about your place in the world?
Are you doing what makes you happy?
What you feel you’re meant to be doing?

I used to wonder…

Now, I’m pretty sure I’m right where I’m meant to be.

Let’s face it, if I wasn’t where I’m meant to be, I never would have had 3 days shy of 4 years with the Very Best Horse Everβ„’…

She made the best faces in this shoot…
I keep going back and editing images from it that I just love because they show her personality.
Like this one:

That tongue! ❀
Sassy pants paint

I wouldn’t have been in a place to bring this beauty Home for my Kid…

Hubby wouldn’t have gotten his Girl…


And who knows what might have been when Astrid needed a soft landing from her former home…

Not sure what’s going on with that mane, colour wise, but it sure looks pretty!

I guess knowing where my place is in this big wide world is pretty darn amazing. I’m sure there are people who live their whole lives never being sureΒ  where they belong.
I’m one of the lucky ones.
I waited 40 years to get here, and I ain’t going to give it up.
πŸ™‚

That Time I Got to Photograph Cavalia Horses…

Every now and then, I get the pleasure of going off Farm with my camera.
Every now and then, I get the pleasure of photographing someone else’s horses.
Today’s post is all about a journey I went on last month, and some horses I was lucky enough to meet.
πŸ™‚

It all started with a late night tag on a Facebook post in a local horse group…someone was looking for local equine bloggers, a friend tagged me, and I explained what I do here (with the required sometimes salty language warning πŸ˜‰ ).
Next thing I knew, the lady looking for bloggers had sent me a message with an amazing offer…

Now understand, this is well after Hubby and The Kid have gone off to bed, I’m sitting with a cup of tea and a cat in my lap editing photos, when I get this message.
Let me tell you, the cat hit the floor, and Hubby was awakened with:

“WAKE UP!!!
You have to book Friday off…I’ve just been invited to an event that I have to go to…”

To which I got a mumbled “Huh? What?” from Hubby…

“Dude!! I’ve been invited to join the media folks to meet the Cavalia Odysseo horses!!!”

Well, that woke him up, and he very much agreed, this was an opportunity that was not to be missed. πŸ™‚
And his boss was awesome, giving him the day off with such short notice!

Friday dawned cold…it was like January had come back for its 137th day.
Didn’t dampen my enthusiasm even a little bit. Though, I do wish I had worn a warmer jacket, but hey, that’s what hot coffee is for, right?

We followed all the directions, and finally made it to the private farm where the horses were enjoying their vacation between shows.
Once everyone arrived, we were introduced to Cavalia people who would be sharing some of the horses with us…now, if I had been smart, I would have written names down. But, truth be told, my excitement was all about the horses. I had camera in hand and I just wanted to take pictures.

And I bet y’all want to see them, right?
The best of the images I took that day?
All right, let’s get to it. πŸ™‚

The first paddock we came to had these two ripping around it…

Having just come from a performance run in Arizona, all the horses we were introduced to were wearing blankets.
I’m sure they appreciated it!

Utah…
So amazingly handsome!

Y’all know me, I love me a Paint…and this guy was simply gorgeous. ❀

When you’re having fun running around and throw a shoe…lol

This is Marc-Olivier Leprohon, Cavalia’s Artistic & Equestrian Operations Director. He was showing us around with the horses, and answering any questions we might have had.
Once again, I was far too busy taking pictures to ask questions.

Along came the Arabians…

These guys just had a grand time galloping around us.
And yes, all of the 70 horses in the show are either stallions or geldings. (we didn’t get to meet all of them, just a handful, to be clear)

Stopped to snort πŸ˜‰

It was clear, watching these horses enjoy some free play time, that they love to perform. It didn’t take them long to figure out that this was another performance, but one where they could do whatever their equine hearts desired. Oh, and they sure did have fun!

❀

One of my favorites of the day:

Is it bad that I wanted him to snort on her camera?
It really was sweet how curious he was about her…

Once we were done photographing the Arabians having fun, we were taken over to meet the smallest equine member of the cast…

Miniature horse named Renaissance…

Oh my, he was a cutie!
He was a feisty little guy too…he’s just 2 1/2 years old and still a stud, so he has a mighty big attitude to go with that adorable package.
He darn near stole the show for the day.
Until we met the biggest guy in the show…

Gavilan

*swoons*
This guy…
This guy was the show stealer for me.
He’s a big boy, still a stud and oh so beautiful!
I was quite impressed with how well-behaved he was, all things considered.
New place, crazy winds and chilly, the mini stud challenging him every chance he got (I told ya, that boy was sassy!!) and he stayed pretty calm, cool and collected.

One of my favorites of him and the groom:

“My human…such a goooood human”
πŸ˜‰

From there, we (Me, Hubby and The Kid) wandered back to the paddock where the Paint was for a few more shots…

Ah, that sassy Paint side eye…gotta love that look! ❀

It was a wonderful way to spend a chilly morning and I’m so happy to have been offered the chance to go.
πŸ™‚

Cavalia Odysseo opens in Winnipeg May 12th.
If you have the chance to check the show out, do so!
You won’t be disappointed!

Runnin’

I have spent the last 3 months feeling sad and tired.
I am, quite honestly, sick and tired of feeling sad and tired.
And the ridiculous cold has not helped at all.

So when Hubby had to pull the tractor out to move hay bales and clear snow, he asked if I wanted him to exercise the Girls while I took pictures…I happily agreed.
Both because I needed the camera time, and because those mares were getting fat and lazy.
πŸ˜‰

Galloping towards the camera…

I will admit, I lost my breath for a bit when I only counted 3…
Of course, I have the same problem every time I hang their beet pulp buckets. Every damn day, a tear escapes when I hang 3 buckets instead of 4. :/

Galloping away from the camera…

Took those nags a bit to get back into the swing of running about, having fun. When they caught on, they ran for a good 45 minutes.
Those were happy, happy equines!

❀

I love Sable’s face in this shot…she looks so happy!

And then…

Ears!!

Ruby put on the cranky mare ears because Sable tried licking her muzzle…it’s something she used to do to Cookie.
Old habits and all that stuff.
To be fair, Cookie wasn’t thrilled with it either, but it’s something Sable does to be affectionate with her herdmates.

I’ve also been working my way through some old images on the hard drives. I have sooooo many that I need to pare down.
Including a couple of cute ones from the Stable where The Kid takes her lessons:

Joe the Barn Cat

The horses were coming in and Joe wanted to be out before they got there!

Brazzle

He’s a lovely, snuggly fellow.
❀
I love that big door for taking pictures.
I get so many great shots there.

Sharing with McGuffy’s Reader Sparks:18

Also sharing with Awww Mondays at Comedy Plus

‘Til We Meet Again

Here we are, at the end of January.
It’s been an exhausting winter.
Either way too cold, or bouncing up above freezing.
Honestly, I’ve spent the last month being rather unsure what I’m going to find in the pasture every morning…

Y’see, rapid weather changes are hard on horses.
Hard to believe that such large, powerful animals can be so damn delicate, but there it is…rapid weather changes can cause upset tummies in a flash. And, often before we humans know it’s coming.
To counter act that, I make sure everyone has a good pile of hay to munch from, salt blocks within easy reach of the waterer (plus one away from it, in case someone wants to hoard it from the others), and an extra dash of salt in their beet pulp daily.
The idea is, keep things moving in and out on schedule, and hope that’s enough to keep tummies settled and happy.
All 3 are doing well.
πŸ™‚

And me?

Well, I finally picked up my camera last week.
Between Astrid looking gorgeous in the snow:

Little Red ❀

Beautiful Girl ❀

And the urge to create something to honor my Cookie…
Well, the camera and I got reacquainted.

Take a blanket, halter, crown, Cookie Monster and a bottle of whiskey to the pasture…

Funny how the good ones go
Too soon, but the good lord knows
The reasons why I guess

And this is what I get…

Sometimes the greater plan is kinda hard to understand
Right now it don’t make sense
I can’t make it all make sense

And this…

So long my friend, until we meet again
I’ll remember you
And all the times we used to
Sit right here on the edge of this pier
Watch the sunset disappear
And drink a beer


Until we meet again, my Love.
Never goodbye.
We will be together again.

In the meantime, it’s time to stop the grief from stifling the creativity, and let it flow through and work with the creativity.
That’s the plan, anyways. πŸ˜‰

So, I think I’m back, friends.
At 11 weeks after Her death, I think I can finally breath enough to continue on without being a sobbing zombie mess.
Can’t guarantee there won’t be tears here and there (of course there will be) but instead of letting that stop me, I’m going to just go with it…
We’ll see what comes from that.
❀

Sharing with McGuffy’s Reader Sparks:17

Today’s musical inspiration provided by:

And…
Did ya notice the new thing?
πŸ˜‰

A Look Back at 2017

So, here we go into 2018.
Let’s take a last look back at 2017 first, ‘kay?

I’m not a Resolution kinda gal, but I do like that look back at the things that worked, the things that need a little tweaking and the things that were a fail. Then, we adjust from there, for the next year.
Plus, there’s all the pretty pictures to look at. πŸ˜‰

So, since we’ve got 12 months of stuff to look at, let’s get at ‘er…

January

Very first image of 2017…first one I shot, first one I shared.


No Yule season is the same without a Yule pony picture…Ruby took that to a whole new level by trying to eat one of the decorations.
Jerk. πŸ˜‰

“Hey Mom, you put apples on the tree??”
~Ruby

My Old Ladies… ❀
Practicing their long and low trot.
It may not look like much in a photo, but this is so beautiful in person…I could watch them do this all day long. Just look at how in sync they are here…gorgeous!

Holding the heat vent down…

It was a typical frigid winter, so Miss Daisy Mae did what any good cat does…stay warm on the heat vent, while I Dreamed about the garden and coming Spring.

My shoe box full of seeds…

February

February saw us playing in the snow…

I love this shot so much…feral or friendly Palomino?!?

Doing some hoof maintenance…

“Make sure it looks good too, Dad!”
~Sable

And doing portraits…

❀

❀

 

And then, there was this fun shot…

Who doesn’t like a pink mint?

March

March is when we start getting out more, thinking about the coming Spring. We can smell it on the wind, the snow is slowly melting…and the cats?

Ghost (in front) and Trouble

Out more, wandering, looking for trouble…but not these 2 ^^^ anymore. 2017 saw them become fat, lazy, neutered boys.
That’s a good thing, because those boys were going out fighting way too much!

“Do you mind??!?”
~Gabrielle

Gabrielle has a pee inside a hoof print in a snow bank.
Weirdo. LOL!!

Xena, asking for belly rubs…

Pretty Xena, enjoying the sunshine.

Max and Ruby

Aww, Max and Ruby. πŸ˜‰

Then, the water came…

Luckily, Lake Midnight didn’t stick around nearly as long this March.

Splashing in the puddle…

Oh, but my Girl made sure to play in it. Splashy ponies are so fun to watch. πŸ™‚ Do you see the heart I clipped into her coat? On her bum?

Then came the photo shoot to celebrate the arrival (if only on the calendar) of Spring!

“Oh! Hey Mama…whatcha doin'”
~Cookie

***Sigh***
“Seriously?!? Why do you keep doing this to me?”
~Astrid

“If I have to wear this, I want treats.”
~Sable

April

Easter, more portraits both at Home and at Home-away-from-Home, sleeping horses and mud…
So.
Much.
Mud.

Sable EasterPony

❀

❀

Oreo

Sable

The look I get when I wake Astrid from a snoring sleep…

And a muddy, stinky Palomino has a roll…

May

Pig babies!!!
Pig babies arrived in May…

Bacon Bits 2017

They are so cute when they’re little.
Before they figure out the Food Lady, before they fully understand their new world around them…I just want to snuggle them, and hug them, and pet them…LOL!!
But wait, later on, I’ll show you how much bigger they get…

This is our brave piglet…

See? Little, so adorable…
The grass is coming back, the sun is shining more, the Girls love to bask in the sunshine…they’re like giant cats in the sun.
Sunshine melts their bones into jelly. ❀

Sable just wanted me to know she was tired.

Ruby

Sunshine jelly bones means I get to practice my sunrise photography.
Sunrise is my favorite time of day to shoot. ❀

Ghost

June

By June, school is almost done for The Kid, the garden has seeds and some plants, and we’re looking ahead to meatie chickens…

Tilling my soon to be garden space…

The Kid forking green food to piglets…

Pig babies are figuring out, and loving the weeds getting forked to them…and growing like weeds too!

Andy Piggie says “Listen Food Lady, if you aren’t bringing us food, then why are you waking us up?”


Daphne rests after running like a maniac (her everyday normal) and throwing weeds around the yard, while barking and growling at them.

Having a rest in the long grass…

Max helps me in my early morning photography, and our Blonde Girl…

Sable looks on with interest…

Is bright gold after shedding out her winter fuzzies.

July

July brings us the first hay cutting…I did good this year!
Near onto 700lbs of cut with a scythe, hand raked and baled hay.
Yay, me!!

Filled, strings tied…

July also brings us flowers, rodeo trips and bugs…

❀

The air this bull got was amazing.

“Oh. Hello.
Did you want to pass?”

The deer in the middle of our road…we’d just turned off the highway towards the Farm, and youngster was standing there. Such a beautiful image of our road to Home.


All those bugs means smudge fires…Our Ruby, she does love a good smokey fire. πŸ˜‰

“It’s just so relaxing, Mama!”
~ Ruby



August

Blankets, a birthday, apple slices, ducks and more…

“Ermagerhd!!! I’m being eat…oh, wait, this ain’t so bad.”
~ Cookie

Old Ladies need to know they *can* wear blankets. Especially when it’s frigid cold, and Mama needs to know Old Ladies are safe. ❀

❀

I turned 45.
My Pony and I had a photo shoot together…
My Kid captured this perfectly.
I love everything about this shot.
❀

“Oh, hello there Ladies…would you like some apple slices?”

My 4 moochers…
Kid has a bucket full of apple slices, I lay on the ground by the fence.
Wholly and completely inspired by Underlook and his Under-Horse project…

Ohoh!!
Some one got a sour one!

And then these 2 arrived…thanks to a friend from the Stable…

Quack quack quack

Gotta tell ya, these 2 boys have grown a lot!
Looking forward to spring, when I can get them some girlfriends. πŸ™‚

Heh.
The ears tell you how much she appreciated being photographed.

My BabyGirl doing a normal horse thing…enjoying the relief from bugs in the smoke of the smudge. ❀

September

My biggest accomplishment for September was helping my Cookie get over her fear of having her breakaway halter taken off.
It was huge for her…
In fact, you can read about it here:
They Don’t Need To Understand

❀

October

In October I met a horsewoman that I have long admired at a clinic I was beyond excited about…

This was a preview image from the Anna Blake clinic…
I still have to finish those images to share them.
But, I learned a lot at the clinic and come home ready to share that knowledge with my mares.

Winter coats are more obvious…

Fluff from the poplars rests on long fuzzy hairs…

Naps in the sun are still a priority…

And the Pig Babies begin their journey to Freezer Camp…
See? Not so little and cute any more!

Joining their neighbours, the meat chickens…

November

The land is getting ready for sleep, its cooling off, and we’re ready to do the annual Remembrance Day shoot…

This year I wanted a simple image, with a big impact…
A yellow ribbon, placed on one who would always wait for her Love to come Home to her…


2 days after I took this picture November broke me.
Ripped my Heart right out of my chest and destroyed me.
November 13th.
I can never, ever forgive November for this…

Sable saying goodbye…

November 13th…
My Heart.
My Soul.
My Best non-human Friend.
My Cookie…crossed Bifrost, the Rainbow Bridge, taking a huge chunk of my Heart with her.

Hubby took this while I was working on convincing her to wear that ribbon…she loved cats. I love that they’re sharing breath here…Coal was an amazing comfort to her. She was the only cat other than Cookie’s Felix who was allowed to sit on her back. ❀

A funeral pyre fitting for my Warrior Queen.
πŸ˜₯

December

I have no pictures for December.
I’ve taken nothing on the Farm since that fire.
I am, in truth, so glad that 2017 is finally done.

I have things to do.
I have places to go.
I have things to learn.
I have a Heart to heal and a camera to learn how to love again.
That’s all on the list for 2018.

Hope you’ll stick with us on that Journey.

Happy New Year.