SHS~January 25th

What a week! We had some fantastic weather, snow melted, I picked mud…MUD!!!…out of hooves, groomed muddy horses, and now we’re back to below freezing. It’s been an interesting one, that’s for sure. Thankfully, the warmth made it so all I needed to do was a quick pile picking in the shelter, instead of a full clean out. Yay! No one wants to be inside when the weather is warm, and the sun is shining. My Girls sure enjoyed sunning their bums!

The prompts this week are Relax, In my Cup, Light, Looking Down, and Weather.

Relax

Horses yawn for a myriad of reasons…stress, discomfort, relaxation…just like us humans. I have a pretty good handle on my Girls moods, and I know what’s going on with them when I see yawns. These yawns were definitely because they were relaxed…

Right after a grooming session.

Right after a grooming session.

Ruby is a tramp when it comes to grooming. Brazen hussy. Brush whore. We have learned that grooming gets what you want from Ruby before food. Yup, Girl does love a good brushing.

In fact, right before this yawn series, Kid had her front hooves in hand. No panic, no “gimme my foot back!!”, no side stepping…just “Oh, you want that? Okay.” 🙂

Clearly, the trick is to get her to relax with a good grooming, then ask for feet.

There's my relaxed Girl. <3

There’s my relaxed Girl. ❤

This one ^^^^ just did something scary, and learned that it wasn’t so bad. Hubby hooked up the lead rope, walked her away from me, then showed her the German WW2 helmet, while I took pictures. She was on edge, not knowing where Mama was (she is a huge Mama-suck! That’s okay. I love that her and I have bonded so well. I just plain love her. 🙂 ), and it was tough for her to trust Daddy.

But she did it, and he rewarded her with a few pellets, which made her relax almost instantly, and brought on the yawns. I am very proud of her!

In My Cup

Coffee, in one of my favorite cups.

Coffee, in one of my favorite cups.

Light

I love this shot of my Girl…

Cookie

Cookie

I found it to be washed out though…we had some sunlight peeking through the clouds, and between the fence and snow, it just washed out. So I played with the colors, contrast, and lightness until the shot looked like this… My Love color adjusted scaledI am much happier with this version…Oh, but then, I desaturated, to get a black and white image… My Love color adjusted scaled bwAs far as I’m concerned, this one is perfect. Stripped out the color, bumped the lightness up and there we go…beautiful.

Of course, when it comes to Her, I am biased. I admit it.

Looking Down

We tried to get Daphne to wear the German helmet…German Shepherd dog wearing a German helmet…yeah, would have been awesome! Daphne, however, does not understand Mama’s need to make her wear stuff, and refuses to do it.

So, we tried sitting her next to it. She spent a good 10 minutes looking down at it and sniffing, sniffing, sniffing…

"This smells so interesting!"

“This smells so interesting!”

Once the sniffing was done, Hubby caught her attention, I hit the button, and kept shooting, until this…

Perfect!

Perfect!

Best shot of the entire day!

Weather

As I said above, we had some lovely weather this week. Well above normal temperatures. We even hit a high of +5c! Of course, that weather brought melting and mud. Oh, and who figured out fast that getting caked in mud means a grooming?!?

Brazen Hussy

Brazen Hussy

Yep, you guessed it. Our Ruby Girl.

Have a look at how well she caked that mud on her bum!

Holy mud, Ruby!

Holy mud, Ruby!

😛 That’s our Ruby.

Sharing with Scavenger Hunt Sunday hosted by Ashley Sisk.

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H is for Horses

Last night at haying time, Cookie decided to be a turd. Herd dynamics are unstable right now, as Astrid is pushing to take over lead mare, and Ruby is pushing back, because she loves being the boss, which makes Cookie just plain grumpy. She tried to take that grumpiness out on Sable once the hay was down.

Now, for the most part, as long as everyone eats, and no one gets hurt, I don’t care what posturing and grumpy mare things they do. It’s just them being horses. What I care about is when these things happen when the humans are in the line of fire. Then it crosses over into disrespecting the real Lead Mare…me(and by extension, The Kid). And I ain’t puttin’ up with it!

Last night, once hay was down, and before Kid got out of the mix, Cookie tried to take a round out of Sable. Well, the answer is always to make the feet move on the shit disturber. So, Cookie had to move her feet…and the chase was on!

I had just gotten the wheelbarrow out, had Daphne running loose with me, and Cookie goes zooming by, with The Kid behind her…’round and ’round the pasture they go, every now and then, Cookie slowing, stopping, and The Kid asking if she’s ready to behave. Instead of turning to join up, she’d turn her butt to The Kid….which is blatant disrespect from a horse. Every time, it earned her a frozen horse turd to the butt, and off they went again.

I wish I would have had a chance to grab my camera, because  this included some full-out galloping by Cookie, and damn, she is one beautiful horse in motion!!
*sigh*
But, no, I had to hold Ms Daphne’s collar, because to her, this seemed like some grand game of chase, and oh, how she wanted to play! She’s a herding breed, and this game? Right up her little puppy alley!
As much as I’d like to let her go and play too, I know full well, Cookie will kick and stomp her to death. No joke, Cookie is not a fan of dogs. If Daphne is right next to me, she’s safe, but running loose around Cookie? Not so much. Therefore, I avoid having Daphne run loose around her as much as possible.

Oh, but the puppy excitement! I had a hold of her collar, because the gruff “down!” wasn’t working any more. Her herding instincts were starting to take over, and she was having a hard time focusing on my commands. Once I had her collar though, even though she was whining and crying to join the chase, she didn’t pull or squirm. At one point she had her front paws on my arm, and just kept looking at me and yipping, begging to be let go to join the chase. Her excitement was palpable, and it egged Cookie on.

Finally, on one of her gallops past, she bounced to a stop, and turned to come in to me…well, the join up was what Kid was after, but with her, not me. When The Kid got close she turned butt to Kid. I told Cookie that she had to be respectful of The Kid too, that turning to me wasn’t going to work. She had to afford The Kid the same respect she gives me. She gave me a snort and a sigh, made like she was going to run off again, then finally turned and offered, rather grudgingly, to join up with The Kid.
Finally!!
From there, The Kid and her have a moment, and then The Kid releases her to re-join the group to eat. From that second, I know it’s safe to let Daphne go, the excitement has dispelled, and I sent her out of the pasture with her big Kong chewy toy.

As I walked towards the gate, past my Girl, she sighed. I rubbed her shoulder, and told her if she’d hadn’t been so stubborn, The Kid would have let her back to the food sooner, and she wouldn’t have had to move her feet so much. In answer to that, she snorted,  twitched her tail, and walked off to join the others at the feeder.
Silly bum, she has to remember, even being my Love Pony, she has to be respectful of all humans, not just me. 🙂

H is for horses, hay, herding dogs, and herd dynamics.

Sharing with Jenny Matlock’s Alphabe-Thursday.

Wearin’ the Toque

Happily, I did get outside to take some pictures yesterday. I used Hubby’s Winnipeg Jets (hockey) toque. We had gone to The Kid’s Christmas concert at school earlier in the week, and he won it in the silent auction. First thing I thought of was horses wearing it for a photo shoot. Strangely, he wasn’t surprised by that. At all. 😉

Astrid

Astrid

Sable

Sable

Cookie...looks thrilled, doesn't she?

Cookie…looks thrilled, doesn’t she?

Ruby wore it beautifully...gave us forward ears and everything!

Ruby wore it beautifully…gave us forward ears and everything!

And then she decided she was done, and shook it off.

And then she decided she was done, and shook it off.

^^^ I love this face so much!! ^^^

Meanwhile, Daphne was thirsty…

Having a DrinkHeated waterers…not just for horses!

Scavenger Hunt Sunday~October 5th

It’s getting cold out! Well, it’s still on the plus side of the thermometer, but we’re wearing more sweaters indoors, and definitely keeping the slippers on. The Girls are working hard on their winter coats, and everyone is looking plush and fuzzy. Yay! 🙂

We’ve been refilling the shelter with straw more often, and they are happily munching on the fluffed bedding. We use wheat straw-because The Kid is allergic to oats-and The Girls come running to munch while I fluff it in.

This week’s Scavenger Hunt Sunday reflects the cooling temperatures. This week’s prompts are Autumn, Leaves, Boots, Hot Beverage and Game.

On to the pictures!

Autumn and Leaves

I used the same picture for both prompts, because my trees are dropping their leaves rapidly, in the cool Autumn air. Cheating? A bit, but I’ll make up for it in the next prompts. 😉

Autumn and LeavesMy lilacs look so bare!

Boots

Both The Kid and I needed new boots…she needed rubber boots, and got a pair she’s been longing to have for a very long time!

No surprise that she'd want these!

No surprise that she’d want these!

Happily, it was an end of season sale and they were marked down 65%.

I needed a decent pair of boots for working with The Girls. Rubber boots don’t offer much in the way of foot protection when a horse steps on you. When we went and looked for The Kid’s boots, I took a look through the work boot dept. I found myself a pair of boots for a paltry $22.49. Marked down from $99! Steel toes and much safer for when our Blonde Girl has a scare from The Paints, and steps on me…happens more often than I am happy about, let me tell you!

I think I should have bought 2 pairs...these have already gotten a ton of use!

I think I should have bought 2 pairs…these have already gotten a ton of use!

Hot Beverage

Some times it’s tea, some times it’s hot chocolate, but 98% of the time, the hot beverage of choice around this farm is coffee. Strong, with lots of cream, and enjoyed immensely on a cool Autumn day.

One of my favorite cups. :)

One of my favorite cups. 🙂

Game

We have a few popular games around here…

Game 1

Chase. Daphne chases the cats, and the cats chase Daphne.

Chase. Daphne chases the cats, and the cats chase Daphne.

Game 2

Making tea. Yup, my horses love to add any vegetation they can to the troughs. Even more fun when Mama has just cleaned them.

Making tea. Yup, my horses love to add any vegetation they can to the troughs. Even more fun when Mama has just cleaned them.

Game 3

Cantering around and kicking up your heels.

Cantering around and kicking up your heels.

Game 4

Follow the Leader! Always a fun game!

Follow the Leader! Always a fun game!

Sharing with Scavenger Hunt Sunday hosted by Ashley Sisk.

Rainy Weekend

It’s been a rainy one here this weekend. We’ve needed the moisture though. The pasture was starting to brown off and dry up. Not good. Not at the end of August. The pasture grass dies off too soon, and then I have to start with hay sooner. My Hay Guy in is BC right now-has been for a while!-so I don’t have my hay for winter 100% in place yet. He’s back this week, so I can get that solidified, and quit worrying. 🙂

In the meantime, with all the rain we’ve had, the pasture is greening up again, and growing. Once the sun comes back out later on this week, the grass will explode with growth. Yay! Then we should be just fine until October or November.

The rain did not put a damper on the local rodeo though. That’s where a couple of my pictures for Scavenger Hunt Sunday are from. The prompts this week are Table Setting, Flowers, Children, Running, and Photographer’s Choice.

Table Setting

We don’t really set the table in our house. Truthfully, my kitchen table tends to catch more *stuff* than anything else. A real table setting happens very rarely for us.

Cookie munching from her table setting.

Cookie munching from her table setting.

When you eat off the ground though, the entire pasture is your table setting.

Flowers

I have day lilies in the front of my house…

FlowersI didn’t know that when we bought the house. It wasn’t until a few weeks after we moved in that the flowers bloomed. Now we’re enjoying them again this year.

Children

Max and Daphne always act like spoiled children. Children who don’t listen when told to quit fighting with each other!

Brats!!

Brats!!

My children have a great time chasing each other around!

Running

Oh there was a lot of running at the rodeo, and I had a tough time making a choice for this prompt. Finally, I decided to go with one of the barrel racers.

Barrel Racer Grey2It’s amazing to watch the horses running, and sliding, around those barrels!

Photographer’s Choice

Once I sat down to edit the rodeo pictures I took yesterday, I knew exactly which photo I wold be using for Photographer’s Choice!

Saddle Bronc 1

Sharing with Scavenger Hunt Sunday hosted by Ashley Sisk.

Wordless Wednesday-The Animals Of Midnight Calico Farm

So much fun with animals here. The horses had a cantering good time yesterday, Sable wore her cooler blanket for the very first time (and behaved very well with it on!), our PoloCat has revealed herself as female (we didn’t know because she moved into the garage with her pal Marco before winter and refused to be handled), and soon to be a Mama cat…like in a week or so! Max and Fiona have been snatching dog food off the deck, and Daphne…oh, my Daphne. She has discovered empty pop cans as toys. My weird, weird dog.

Onto the pictures…Enjoy!

Paints, starting the cantering fun.

Paints, starting the cantering fun.

Soon, everyone got involved.

Soon, everyone got involved.

Astrid tries to catch up.

Astrid tries to catch up.

'Kay we need to stop and brreath for a minute...

‘Kay we need to stop and breath for a minute…

Mooching water over the fence.

Mooching water over the fence.

Her spanky new blanket.

Her spanky new blanket.

WhackaDoo

WhackaDoo

Max and Daphne enjoy Daphne's food.

Max and Fiona enjoy Daphne’s food.

Our PoloCat and her big round tum. <3

Our PoloCat and her big round tum. ❤

Linking to Wordless Wednesday at Create With Joy and Crafty Spices.

Daphne vs The Peat Pot

Sometimes, Daphne finds things that she thinks are the greatest toys ever. Like most farm dogs, it’s typically something disgusting. Frozen horse poo (in the winter), fresh horse poo (all the time), bloated ticks, cat poo, assorted pasture garbage…it’s a dog thing, I guess.

After The Kid planted her sunflowers, she left a peat flat on the deck. Well, Daphne decided this was a grand toy!

She went running off the deck, and when I looked over, I saw this going on...

She went running off the deck, and when I looked over, I saw this going on…

Daphne peatpotShe rolled and she snarled and she threw it in the air, then chased it until she came running back up to the house…

Where she fell down beside the stairs, to continue in her mauling of the flat...

Where she fell down beside the stairs, to continue in her mauling of the flat…

There, in the back ground, you can just see the bit that's left...

There, in the back ground, by her back leg, you can just see the bit that’s left…

Dogs are weird. Especially my WhackaDoodle.

Sharing with Camera Critters