Wednesday, August 21, 2019

They might be giants

Okay, the band by that name isn't really my thing; I'll take giant horses any day. However, alternative rock would probably be a fitting soundtrack for riding a slick, round, one-ton powerhouse in a big hayfield/pasture with only a bar bit, especially when she gets a bit amped! Meet Emma:

Actually, Emma and I got on pretty well for a first date. Apparently I passed muster; Brian told me on the way home that he overheard the owner and friends talking about putting me on a more challenging gelding after watching me handle Emma. I'm going to nip that idea in the bud if it comes up when we go back out!

Brian worked his team while I rode, so no reciprocal action shots. Afterwards we hosed off our sweaty partners, and I captured some neat photos then.

The sky was amazing last night!

It was also pretty spectacular this morning:
Mt. Hood in pre-dawn light

Mt. Adams up in WA with 'shower curtains'

The new neighbors' 'day lodgings;' they don't stay there overnight

Rick and Brian were up and out of here early to make it to the State Fair by 7 a.m. to check in livestock. I got up and made their lunch, and was rewarded with that sunrise. It's been cloudy ever since, but no precipitation yet. Chuckie is doing his best to summon some!
Chuckie believes in "the power of the paw"

That's it for now from . . .

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Life's little surprises

Last night Rick and Brian got home late; I didn't know they were going out to Rick's draft horse client's again so Brian could practice driving for the State Fair. Then Rick surprised me with a request from his client: would I be willing to ride in two classes? Rick's client needs someone for the 'Draft Horse Bareback Equitation' and 'Draft Horse Riding, Walk/Trot' classes, so I said “Sure!” So tonight I'm going out with Brian so we can both practice with our horses for our classes, and this morning I rode Lance bareback just to make sure I still can. 😉 As an adolescent in Texas, most of my riding was bareback, but now I'm convinced that a properly fitting saddle is more comfortable for a horse than a person's 'pin bones' digging into the muscles on either side of the spine.

While riding Lance in our arena, I noticed a big, nasty plant down in our woods. So after riding, I went down to investigate – and found two burdock plants, no doubt seeded by deer bearing burrs.

Fortunately, I also stumbled upon a missing spade leaning against the big maple holding Brian's old treehouse. Brian is notorious for taking tools and not putting them away; in this case it was fortuitous, because these suckers have long, tough taproots. I dug them out and deposited them in the trash bin; we don't need another noxious weed trying to establish itself on Boulderneigh.

I also spotted something else in that maple. At first I thought it was a piece of white plastic, maybe a lid from a plastic bucket. But when I got closer and stood on my tippy-toes, I could see it was a huge fungus of some sort!
my big fist for scale
Speaking of Brian, he surprised me Saturday evening by wanting to drive me around to some of his favorite hang-outs near the Willamette River. Of course I took advantage of the offer for some rare bonding time with my near-man:

It is warm and dry, but that's summer for you. Earlier this month we got the barest hint of precipitation, just enough to bejewel the grass spiderwebs scattered around the yard and landscaping: 

We'll be watering the garden and landscaping plants for awhile yet. Seems like the rainy season is arriving later each year. This morning it looked like the new neighbors on our north side were having their well tested; I hope and pray their usage doesn't affect our low-output well.

Off to move the sprinkler and pick some more cherry tomatoes!

That's it for now from . . .

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Checking in after a busy week

 Yep; I've been busy as a bee!

My mom arrived last Thursday night for a visit and just left today. (But before heading home to Texas, she's continuing on to Alaska to visit her brother.) We talked and cooked and shopped; we went to church and visited Deepwood Estate and drove by Brian's school; she wanted a 'project' while she was here – and peach season provided for her wishes.

These are our favorite variety, Canadian Harmony, hard to find except for the small orchard just downhill from us. We will relish every morsel of these fresh and frozen, as the owner tore out half his small orchard last year and plans to tear out the rest this winter. 😭 I guess wine grapes are more profitable. 😖

In spinning news, I finished this spindleful this month and will start on the second half of the braid soon. Since this is for a spindle-spinning challenge on Ravelry, I won't be using my new tool, but can hopefully 'play' with it soon, too!

That's an Electric Eel Wheel Nano, a tiny little e-spinner I backed on Kickstarter and received Saturday. I know; I know. I don't need another spinning tool, but I think it will be a fun little travel wheel and the price was hard to beat.

Brian's combine driving job ended last week, so he's back to working with his dad until school starts two weeks from today(!). A week from today they will be spending part of every workday at the State Fair, where Rick has been contracted to provide veterinary services again. Brian will also be driving Shires in the draft horse show again, his last year in the Youth division; he is getting in his first driving practice tonight. And so zooms by the rest of summer 'vacation.' 😳

This pooch has rallied a little bit, apparently thanks to the Adequan injections. In fact, he's gone walk-about once each of the last three days, the first time he's had enough comfort and energy to do more than the bare minimum in weeks. The first time, Monday night, he had us in a panic, because we couldn't find him anywhere after letting him out for a bedtime potty break. Rick and I hunted with flashlights all over the property and beyond until midnight, when Brian called to us from the house, saying Jackson was waiting on the front porch. Apparently coming back from being on death's doorstep has given him permission to shed the "good dog" mantle, because he has studiously ignored me the next two excursions even though I could SEE where he had wandered off to – and I know he saw me! 😂

Caught up for now from . . .

Wednesday, August 07, 2019


Last night Rick went out and sprayed the hornets' nest, but didn't grab my bucketful of apples. So by dawn's eerie light, I headed up to the apple tree to collect it. Too late; the deer had polished off all but this half. I would have picked the last few apples on the tree to have something for my time, effort, and pain, but there were still a few nasties flying around. I didn't tarry.

On the positive side, that recipe I posted yesterday and made for supper is a KEEPER.

That's it for now from . . .