Friday’s Hunt March 19

I’ve been all about Spring this past week.
I refuse to let the weather (that has been very un-Spring-like) get me down.
Spring.
Spring.
Spring.
1 more day to Spring!!

For today, though, I’ve got my offering for the Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills.
Prompts this week are Starts with K, Week’s Favorite and Drink.

Starts with K

Kitty!

Daisy Mae

She was only supposed to be a temporary indoor kitty, but the little pooh-stick turned into a permanent indoor resident.
It’s okay though…this girlie has personality to spare, and loves to talk up a storm. Here I caught her in the midst of talking to the trees and grass blowing about in the wind.

Week’s Favorite

My Old Man Odhinn…

Pretty Kitty ❤

14 years old, with a myriad of health issues, but still my main snuggle Kitty at night. Such a handsome boy! ❤

Drink

Heh. Lifeblood of the Universe…

Mmmmm, coffee!

Can’t start the day with out a good, steaming hot cup of coffee. 🙂

1 day, folks…
1 more day to Spring.

Friday’s Hunt Feb. 19th

What a lovely week of weather we’ve had!
It’s hard to believe it’s February. Yesterday we hit an amazing +6*c.
Sooooo nice!

The horses have been happily basking in the sunshine and the hennys have loved every second of outdoor time they’ve gotten. My birds are spoiled, they do not like to get cold, so when it’s below -15*c, I leave them in the coop. But this warmth? They’re loving boking ’round the chicken yard, snow drifts and all.

This week’s prompts are Starts with G, Week’s Favorite and Pink.
And here’s my images…

Starts with G

Who else could possibly be used for the letter G, other than my Ghost?

<3

My big, sweet, supposedly feral, TomCat.
The Kid and I worked hard on gaining this guy’s trust, and now, he’s the best barn cat ever. Even when he follows me around the Farm yard yapping up a storm. 😉

Week’s Favorite

Well, you saw that image the other day:

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

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

Definitely my favorite shot of the week.

Pink

This one is a close second though…just shot fresh this morning, with the help of The Kid.

pink-mintsMs Cookie lipping up pink mints from The Kid’s hand.
And, a huge thank you to everyone who’s been asking about her, offering wishes of good health and been checking up on us.
Thankfully, my big donkey is back to her normal, delightful self..
Eating her beet pulp happily, and scrapping with Astrid again.

Sharing for Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills.

Hay Run

We hooked up the trailer for another hay run yesterday…

Bringing home the food for nags...

Bringing home the food for nags…

I like to do this early on a Sunday morning.
Get it done early and the day is ahead for whatever else needs doing.
Like napping. 😉

On Friday, Hubby had brought home an apple jack for me.
Not the traditional apple jack (distilled apple juice…nom nom nom!) but the pastry, which is, basically, an apple hand pie rolled in cinnamon and sugar. That was my breakfast, with coffee, while we went up to the Hay Guy’s place.

Once home, I figured with the lovely sunlight, I’d go take a few pictures of the Girls, while Hubby unloaded hay and straw (for chickens)…well, it didn’t take long for someone to figure out I had eaten something that any horse would love!

"Uh. Huh. So, you dare come in here smellng like apples and you have none for me? Really?!?" ~Cookie

“Uh. Huh.
So, you dare to come in here with apples on your breath and you have none for me?
Really?!?”
~Cookie

I tried to tell her it was an apple jack, that there was cinnamon involved, that she doesn’t like cinnamon (she’ll leave her beet pulp pail uneaten if there’s even a hint of cinnamon in it!), and well, quite honestly, she didn’t need any sweets. Seriously, her butt jiggles when she walks…sweet apple pies are not what she needs.

Yeah, her face says it all.
“Uh. Huh. Screw you, hooman…”
😉

Freezer Camp!

Don’t flinch, my loyal vegetarian readers!
I’m not going to show you graphic photos of animals being sent to freezer camp. Not today.
Oh, we’re talking about it, just today, it’s carrots. 🙂

I am not adverse to buying large amounts of produce when I can a. get great quality, and b. get it at a great price.
Before Yule, through the stable my Kid takes lessons at, we had the chance to purchase 20lb bags of carrots.
A quick inquiry to make sure these were good for humans as well as horses (and chickens 😉 ) and then, I asked for 2 bags.

Now, that sounds like a lot of carrots. 40lbs.
But, my Kid doesn’t eat candy. She eats veggies.
It’s not that I tell her she can’t have candy (that would be ridiculous, since I have a crazy sweet tooth!), she just doesn’t like it.
Ahh, but veggies!
I can’t keep her in peas, green beans, carrots, corn…
You get the picture.

So, 40lbs of carrots.
Yeah, gotta have!
We ate a lot of carroty yumminess…but yesterday, I thought I should put some in the freezer. Especially since we have a bunch of other produce to eat right now. And there’s more winter ahead of us.
Normally, I’d pressure can them, but I’ve been lazy on that front…that’s going to change with summer’s garden, and fall meat animal harvests.

So, prepping for the freezer…
First the chop:

big bowl o carrots

big bowl o carrots

I forgot to mention…these carrots are huge. Not woody, really tasty, but huge. Like, cannot give a whole one to the horses, because, well, I already had to go in Astrid’s mouth to pull out the chunk she tried to swallow because she couldn’t chew it.
Wheee!! Fun!
Said no one ever who has had to shove a hand into a horse’s mouth.

That’s a 14″ diameter stainless steel bowl…I have a bigger one too. It’s 18″ across. I call them my perogy making bowls. One for filling, one for dough.

Next, blanching (submerge in boiling water for 3 minutes, cool in ice water bath to stop cooking):

cooling the carrots in ice water

cooling the carrots in ice water

Oh, tops and tips?
They go in the fridge as horse treats:

6 cup bowl of pony nom nom noms

6 cup bowl of pony nom nom noms

That’ll last about 3 weeks for our mares.
By that I mean, it’ll take me 3 weeks to dole that out. If it was up to them, it wouldn’t last 3 seconds.

Finally, I weighed out the amount I wanted in each bag, and vacuum sealed them for the journey to Freezer Camp:

get in the freezer!

get in the freezer!

7 bags of 600 grams, and 1 900 gram bag.
8 meals in total.
Gotta like that.
🙂

Horses are…

Strange creatures.
They can hurt themselves in the oddest fashion, and some, in the most spectacular ways.

Take, for example, our Bella…

Pre-blizzard nap in the sunshine.

Pre-blizzard nap in the sunshine.

We’ve just come out of blizzard-like conditions…again.
Friday night hay supper was a family affair, the weather was so bad.
As I was pouring out some oats for the Girls, The Kid noticed something up with Bella’s eye.
We think that she’d been standing somewhere that her head wasn’t 100% out of the wind, must have closed her eyes, and 1 eye froze shut.
By the time she had finished her beet pulp and the bashing and crashing about that went with it (no joke, they’ve been absolutely crazed with this weather), her eye had opened…except, it had torn some and she had blood running down her face.
Of course, this happened before the oats, and I hadn’t noticed any problems with her. Kinda hard to, with her big head stuck in a bucket, gobbling food. 😉

And so, there was another injury, in the crazy cold/wind/horrible weather to deal with. A new one at that!
Thankfully, today her eyelid is just fine. A wee bit of scabbing at the bottom, but no swelling, no heat and no problem with the eye itself.

Not much photography happened last week. With blizzard conditions, trying to keep everyone warm and fed, and me falling on my face into a sleepy stupor every time I came back into the house.
This week’s favourite photo comes from New Year’s Day…

Cookie and the tree.

Cookie and the tree.

Oh, Ms Sassy Pants ^^^ up there…
“This is what I’m supposed to do, right Mama?
This is what you’re taking my picture for?”

From big ol’ ‘Fraidy Cat to Sassy Pants who knows exactly how I want to her to act/pose for pictures.
I ❤ this mare. 🙂

Horses…they are amazing creatures.
Whether they’re showing us the different ways they can hurt themselves, or they’re playing and looking fabulous, or they’re showing their mischievous sides…

Oh, the size difference between Sable and Astrid...just pure luck I caught them lined up like this.

Oh, the size difference between Sable and Astrid…just pure luck I caught them lined up like this.

Amazing creatures.
Can’t imagine my life with out them.
🙂

Today’s post is being shared with Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills, where the prompts are Starts with B, Week’s Favorite and Creature.

The Winter Blues

January can be a tough time.
We’ve just come out of the hustle and bustle of Yule, Orthodox Christmas has come and gone, we’ve eaten and drank ourselves into a stupor, and now we’re facing the long cold journey until the warm spring winds start to blow.
We all start to get a little stir crazy.
Humans and animals alike…

Especially the horses.
It’s cold, and all they want to do is eat…and then they get bored and want to play. Oh, but then, they’re tired and a nap sounds good. When the sun is out, a nice nap while the sun warms your coat is delightful. Enough to even lay out flat for a bit…ah, but the reality of the cold snow on the ground seeps in and they go back to napping on their feet.

If you happen to have kids, think of it this way…
Y’know how in winter they get snappish because they don’t get out to *do* stuff for long periods of time? Just look at your toddler with cabin fever and the crying starts, right? Fighting for no reason, throwing tantrums, and having hissy fits, just because they can.
That’s how the horses are in January.
And, well, my toddlers average 1200lbs and can smoosh me without even thinking.

Horses are very in tune with their circadian rhythms. Their bodies tell them the light is coming back, and to get ready for the coming spring. They are excitable for the new growth and the longer days.
However, the early dark (albeit later than in December…they’re not eating their beet pulp in the dark at 4:30pm) and the cold temperatures send a different message.

Which leads me back to…1200lb toddlers who are sleep deprived, cabin fevered, grumpy assed brats.
Oh yeah, we humans?
Feeling the same damn way.
*sigh*

So, what’s a Farm girl to do?
Ha!
She drops a bunch of high energy, super fun music on her phone, suits up in her winter gear, grabs a grooming kit and heads out to brush and maul the ponies. 😛
That’s when the fun starts…
Everyone wants to be groomed.
1 woman, 1 grooming kit, 4 horses…lol

I keep telling people to come out for a visit, I’ll give you a brush and you can brush a horse until your hands fall off (that’s right about when the Girls will decide they’re ready to go eat again.) Few have taken me up on the offer though…I muddle through. With music. Which inevitably leads to some crazy cantering games.
Which is good, because then the Girls stretch their legs, have a little fun, buck and kick and play. And I take pictures. From outside the fence. That was a lesson learned a couple of years ago. When the music gets them going and they’re going to run and play, then its time to step outside the gate and photograph them ripping it up.
Trust me, it’s much safer that way. 🙂

This first shot is from last week’s grooming/music/run like a fool session…

Go Cookie, go!

Go Cookie, go!

The next few shots are from yesterday…with all the snow and the bright sun, over exposure happens.
Sometimes, I like to go with it, and enhance that in editing.
Photography isn’t just capturing an amazing image, it’s art too… 🙂

Miss Lazy Pants when I first came outside...

Miss Lazy Pants when I first came outside…

Sable, blasting through the snow drifts...

Sable, blasting through the snow drifts…

Ruby and Astrid...

Ruby and Astrid…

My walking stomachs had Bif Naked’s “I love myself today” as their soundtrack…

Today, if weather allows for it, I’ll throw out the jolly ball for them.
Jolly balls always make for fun times and great photos.
Stay warm, my friends, and stay happy.
We’ve turned the corner, and we’re in the straight away on our way to Spring…we can do this.
And if you local folks need a little music/equine therapy to get you through, you just let me know. 😉
I can hook you up…