You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2009.

                                                   

Now what were we thinking ?  The seasons here are too jarring for me.  We begin the year in winter, which lasts roughly until May.  Then we have late winter, which screws up all the poor flowering trees (yes lilacs) and confuses the animals.  We have had at times through the last 7 years a brief bit of what may be put in the rotation as spring, but not really.  Now it is summer. Period, end of negotiations.  90 degrees plus this week, in the low 50’s at night.  That is the one saving point here, that it cools off at night.  Down south, in the Los Angeles area, it does NOT cool off, and if it does at all, it doesn’t cool off much.  Horrid.  Air conditioning units going 24/7.  Or living with 4 window box fans at full speed…….like living in a helicopter.  No wonder the power grid suffers so much in extreme weather.

Several updates, jockey Rene Douglas, who was critically injured in a spill some time ago is getting over a bout with pneumonia.  He will be returning to rehab soon.  He still has no feeling from his chest down, but no one is giving up hope yet.

La Villa Rouge, the dam of Barbaro, is tentatively confirmed to be carrying a filly full sibling to the late Kentucky Derby winner.  She has produced 6 male foals, so this would be an amazing thing to have a filly join the family.  She is only at 62 days pregnant, due next year.

Off to collect a couple of bales of hay, so better get busy, have a great day all !

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At least animals in MY world.  I have had a three legged cat for a while.  I have known several three legged dogs.  One eyed horses, a horse with a prosthetic leg my farrier cared for.  I have a one winged miniature hen.  One of my favorite critters was the first standard dairy goat kid I was given.  She was born to a yearling first freshner doe, and was the largest one of triplets.  She was born with a condition called anklyosis, which means there are no joints in the limbs, only all hard bone.  This is Claire.

Claire

Claire

When we got Claire, I didn’t have a doe in milk to feed her, and I wanted to give her goat milk vs the kid milk replacer.  The same gal that gave me Claire found a doe that needed a home, which is how Sunflower joined the family.  I would milk Sunflower, and bottle feed Claire.  When we got her, she was so small, she was unable to reach Sunflower’s udder.  Once she was growing and able to stand up on those poor crooked legs of hers, I decided to see if Sunflower would let the baby nurse.  She did.  I began to leave Claire with her on the grass while I did a few chores nearby.  I would tall Sunflower to babysit Claire….and she did.  Unless it was feeding time, Claire lived in a mesh playpen.  One day I had Sunflower loose, and Claire in the playpen.  This is what I found when I came back outside.

Sunflower in Claire's playpen

 Sunflower had decided that was HER baby, and from then on they lived together.  Nature is an amazing thing, and I am blessed each day to see things that if I lived in a city (HORRORS !) that I would not be privy to.

Another hot day on the way, stay cool !

Tweeting ? Notsomuch, honking yes :)

White peacocks.....Tweeting ? No, honking yes 🙂

People have asked me if I use Twitter – and yes, I do, in a very limited way.  I find it has kept me informed on several topics, that otherwise I likely would not have known about in such a “real time” way.  I find that some people who tweet interesting things don’t put those things on their blogs either.  Which makes it difficult to say “hey mom, go to Susan’s blog today and see how she and Elizabeth were done up for author photos !” because it came in on Twitter (here is the link now http://ping.fm/cyULl )  Susan’s tweet said “WhiteElizabeth & I got glammed up for our author photo. She’s loving it; me, notsomuch”.  Cute !   Susan is a world famous top class author of many published books and she will be writing a book with her daughter about the wedding process.  Elizabeth is getting married in July you see 🙂 and has a wonderful blog (the link above links to her blog).

I follow 16 people, mostly authors (some of whom I email with regularly anyway) and entertainment folk.  I have been following Elizabeth Taylor, and was terribly concerned when Michael Jackson died so suddenly.  There was no word from her (you know, the wonderful media – oh your best friend/lover/wife/child is dead.  How do you FEEL now?? questions.  Her rep said when they got words from her they would release them.   The next day, Liz was Tweeting, so sad, but Tweeting all the same.  I found that somewhat comforting.  I think that Twitter will be here to stay……….

Also, in my quest for getting back to being me – I had emailed a man who I do not know, and he replied and we will meet and talk at a future date.  Sometimes we have to reach outside the box or out of our normal zone to find answers or help, and we have to DO IT instead of floundering.  I believe he can help me, if only to get me thinking in a different direction. We shall see.  Life is a collection of so many things – and I am so enjoying things now !

Enjoy the day folks, and stay cool !

 

Yesterday was a physically tough one.  Of the pets left here, there are two sheep and a few miniature goats.  One is mom’s sheep Buttercup, a Romney Barbados cross ewe.  The other is a wethered Barbados sheep named Pumpkin.  Neither lead.  Each one weighs perhaps 150 lbs each.  They are aminable to being herded from place to place, but this year they are going in the far back of the property, which meant I had to lead them over there, perhaps 200 feet total.  So, I got two nylon collars, some hay tie and my stud chain leather lead  shank that I used when I worked at the racetrack so I had something solid to hold onto.  Got them collared and tied together (learned that on two other sheep I led, much easier).  We did have a few forward walking steps.  One total backflip and crash (Pumpkin always does this- well all three times I have had to lead him anywhere that is) One lie down and pretend I am dead (that was Buttercup, not me).  I had thought I would have Audrey lead them over, she is our oldest pet goat now.  She however was not of a mind to leave “home” and had a fit, got tangled up in the leads and before tragedy struck, I decided to deal with her the next time I was up for it- so I put her back and left her there and went off to drag the sheep to their new place.  There are only six others (goats)  that I will move in the back.  I have two pygora goats who need to be sheared (??? again ???? already ???? OMG !!!)  I don’t want them to get stuck to any buckbrush shrubs in this heat.  Whew.  Last night my arms laughed at me, and I am just barely comfortable typing now.  Got the morning stuff done,  and am back inside  with my cup of decaf.  Now that I am done bitching, I had moved on to look up the photographer I knew back in the early 1980’s.  Found a link to a site that has an interview with him, but can’t make it load and play, still messing with it.  Gak, perhaps later on.  It is an interview with Sam Emerson, Michael Jackson’s photographer after his passing was announced.  Tired enough of the sadness, and it has been good to see the music and videos being played (and replayed) the last few days.  Such a talented man he was.

Taking mom to a gathering tonight, want to eat and get some rest, then move a few little goats over to the back.   Supposed to be hot today, we shall see !

Sunset over the valley

Sunset over the valley

As the birds cheep and flutter, either picking up dry grass for nesting, or catching bugs to take to their young, the sounds and signs of summer life are appearing.  The tall rye hay is being cut next door, and the stragglers that popped up in the yard are beginning to change from deep green to light green and light brown.  Soon, they baling will be done, and the new bales will be picked up and stacked for winter’s feed.  I have seen references to weather experts saying that perhaps this is the year without summer.  I know that near Seattle, the paper there ran an article advertising a mock notice “looking for summer’s whereabouts”.  I don’t know what this all means, but I will appreciate it if it does not get scorching.  After all, I moved from central California (where in July the year my son was born, it was consistently over 115 degrees).

The owls have flown away, doing whatever owls do at this point in time.  I am sure they will return in the late fall and winter here – they were interesting to watch and listen to once I got used to all the hoot-hooting.  The foster kittens are about ready to be sent to new homes.  I have two long haired black, one medium hair black, one short haired black, one Siamese.  All so cute, such good babies.  It makes such a big difference in their attitude to people when they are raised with people handling them.  Just too cute.  Have to remember to take the camera and get a few photos before they leave. 

Lots to do still today, moving a few goats and the two sheep from the front barn to the back 4 acres.  That is never a fun thing, especially since one sheep that nearly outweigh me will only throw himself on the ground and refuse to be led.  Which makes it necessary to put a collar on him, then link him to a broke to lead goat……..which is where Audrey  comes in.  Audrey and I race trained one year, many years ago……10 years ? I think that may be correct. Yikes, more disappearing time. Somewhere on this planet is a huge depository of lost time.  Maybe we can spread it over the glacial areas and it will repel the sun and save the planet.

A person died just now.  A wonderfully amazingly talented singer songwriter dancer…….I know, lots of people die each day.   However, this person was known to me by a kind of 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon sort of way.  Sitting here, looking outside, it is bright, the leaves are gold in the shimmering sunlight of early summer and are barely moving in the breeze.  Nothing sounds different, the cars and semis still zooming by.  Birds cheeping.  But the world has become a lot quieter now, Michael Jackson has left our planet.  He aged while in the public eye.   Not grew up, just grew older.  The adults he met always wanted something from him.  As an adult himself, he surrounded himself with those who didn’t want something, kids who were just joyful and at peace and non judgemental.  He helped people, funded causes.  I knew his photographer and his son when I was perhaps 20.  Michael was a very giving man, but he never figured out how to be an adult, not with relationships, not with finances, not with the public.  He adored his children, whom he raised himself, by design.  He had many many friends in the industry, all whom stood behind him when he was accused of being inapporpriate with children…….they knew him.  They loved him.  I still smile each time I hear one of his songs – especially Billy Jean or the title cut from the Thriller album.  In recent years, his health was not good, and today, well today his body called it quits.  At 50 Michael Jackson died, leaving three children and a whole world full of fans music and memories.  Rest in peace Michael, you richly deserve it.

I put part of the blog together the night before.  Find a photo, write something…….last night however, I was beat.  Nothing new about that, but we went to the wildlife reserve (or preserve, whatever, they allow hunting there, so I am unsure what is being reserved, or preserved).  We walked perhaps 3 miles.  Not a big deal, but I was not prepared for that.  Flat footed in knockoff Ugg boots…….but the terrain was level, and we only saw some ducks.  My son was on a snake quest – he has always been bothered that there are no reptiles here.  So, he wants to bring some in to “repopulate” the area.  But we didn’t see any, so we came home.  I ate, did some late chores and collapsed.  I did however watch the finale of “I’m A Celebrity – Get Me Out Of Here”.  Ha.  I watched the last two weeks, and since I missed the Heidi and Spencer crap (thank heavens !), it was ok.  None of the shows I do like are airing new episodes, and besides, Lou Diamond Phillips is still easy on the eyes after 20 + years on screen.  Quite a quality family man he is,  refreshing to see.  Once I get time to write my screenplay, he is now top on my list of send to’s !

Curtain of rain in the distance

Curtain of rain in the distance

Going to be hot, have a trip to town, and perhaps more thunderstorms late today.  Stay safe and have a nice day !

Sunset June 09

Sunset June 09

One thing about living here in the high desert, is that we have the most amazing sunrises and sunsets.  This I took the other day when the weather was so unstable, thunderstorms in the area.  Amazing cloud formations.

We take so much for granted each day, even in going a direct route for a “fix” of something, things can go off track.  Enjoy each day folks, and look for the beauty in everything.  My quote of late ?  If you complain instead of helping with the solution, then you become part of the problem.  If you have enough brain power to complain, then you can use it to help not hinder. On that note, enjoy the beginning of summer weather, supposed to be over 90 here today.

My trusty cart

My trusty cart

I have had this cart since about 1992.  Best type of cart in the world.  I can move a bale of hay broken down into flakes.  I can move an intact bale with ease.  I have even moved two bales at a time with it.  I however don’t do that any longer, as a concession to my broken neck, and besides that I don’t need to deal with two bales of hay in any one place at any one time any longer.  I have moved everything you could possibly imagine with that cart.  It is actually an extension of my arms.  I could push it in the dark through a mine field in a snowstorm and not hit anything.  I cannot work without it.  One day perhaps 2 years ago on New Years day, I was feeding.  I dropped a bale of hay off a high stack, and it bounced…..and I mean BOUNCED.  Not a problem usually, but this day, it bounced, and it made a direct hit on my carts plastic wheel.  Totally destroyed it.  I was DISTRAUGHT to say the least.  I felt like my arm had fallen off, I could not imagine life without my cart………I finally did find replacement wheels, and bought a new pair for it.  I think the cart was made in perhaps the early 1980’s, so that the wheels would have aged and were very brittle was not strange………but oh my ! 

So, in world news, Iran is getting uglier, we are still losing our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and Jon and Kate are getting divorced.  Big surprise there, 8 children and a reality TV show crew filming too much of their lives for what, five years ???? No wonder.  On one hand I feel bad for the family, but what I do lament is what this has set up for the kids down the road.  So, Kate apparently wants to have the show go on.  Hmmmmm.  Once again, poor kids.  That is all I should say on that subject.

I happily finished moving livestock panels yesterday and moved the old dairy goats to the 4 acres at the back of the property.  Now they can graze down the grasses there and the fire danger will be gone.  Some more weed whacking and we will be good to go.   Yeah !

Enjoy your day, I am on a quest to balance work with R/A today……..

It has always interested me that when in the same place, people remember things differently, kind of like when a story is told to one person, then on to nine different folks, by the time it gets to person number ten, the story has changed completely.  Perception, attention, interest, sight, hearing, and of course memory.  When I have recounted something, I have been told “no, that isn’t the way it happened, sounded, smelled etc”.  Is it a faulty memory on the recounters end ?  Is it in the recording mechanism (memory banks ?)

I do not think so.  At an event each and every person will bring away something that is unique to that person.  Even in everyday life, some sound may dominate the whole scene………be it a semi truck passing by, a sheep calling relentlessly for breakfast, a dog barking.  Maybe the sound of the neighbors diesel truck warming up drives you bonkers.  Or the high pitched whirr of a weed whacker down the street – or maybe only when it hits rocks. 

Thunderheads on June 20th

Thunderheads on June 20th

We are all keyed to recall.  Just what we recall  is what varies so greatly and I think that is what makes up the tapestry of our lives.  Like anything, if we all recalled the exact same details, how boring would that be ?

Off to move goats, enjoy the day on this second day of summer !