Weekend Coffee Share

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I don’t know where to begin this week. It’s been a great week. We’re starting to settle in at our new place. I really like it so far. Things are coming together. I have both my horses here, and they are getting along great. Do you have time for a cup of coffee? I’ll tell you all about it. I just need to get myself a refill first. Just a second.. How is your coffee ? Ooo, good 🙂 

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I’ve told myself more than once, that I’m not having a another rental (with land,) ever again. It’s emotionally draining to set up someone else’s property, put your soul into it, and then leave it. All those hot summer days fixing fences, digging gardens, pruning trees, all that becomes part of you. At least that’s how I feel. This time it’s slightly different. The property isn’t huge, less than 1.5 acres. The pasture is already fenced (I did enforce some parts of it that needs reinforcements, but mostly is was good.) The house is beautiful, underneath a few layers of dirt. Working on getting it cleaned, room by room. I accidentally started the fire alarm when I used the stove top for the first time. Before I even had any food on, just old grease starting to smoke. I did the same thing the first time I started the oven last night..old grease.Yuck! The house was designed by an artist, and have some gorgeous mosaic on the living room floor, and in the master bathroom. I know that I’m going to spend at least a year here. (Most likely. Unless something completely unexpected happens.) Therefor, I am making it my home. I am putting a piece of my soul into it, but not my whole soul. I am going to be able to leave when its time. (I’m sure we could stay longer than a year, if we want.) Until then, I’m planning on enjoying every day here. Naturally I am taking great care of the place, but if I owned it, I would dig out old flower beds (that aren’t that beautiful any longer,) plant fruit trees, and make more permanent beautifying changes. Now it’s more about upkeep, and enjoying. 

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I did put in a new garden area. It’s for an annual vegetable garden. I am going to enjoy that area every day, so that is worth it to me, even if I only would have a garden there one year. I finished fencing the area, and planted some of my seedlings this week. I’m hoping for a prolific harvest. It is peaceful here. The sounds you hear are mostly birds singing, and an occasional dog barking (usually not mine.) I met two of my neighbors, an older couple, they seem to be good people. I love having my horses outside the door. I give them love several times a day. If I want to take a break from working in the garden, it takes me 30 seconds to walk over to my horses. I feel grateful, and happy about where I am right now.  

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I planted cherry tomato seedlings, earlier this week, that my daughter and I grown from seeds, under a heat lamp.

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These rows are all going to be cherry tomatoes. It’s my daughter’s favorite vegetable. We eat lots of them every day. The seedlings are tiny now, you can barely see them in this photo. LOL. Just wait and see, they’ll be HUGE very soon.

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I have a little trick I do, after planting the seedlings, I water a circle around them, with a diluted 3/4 water + 1/4 vinegar solution. It serves two purposes, as a fertilizer, and it keeps ants away. We have lots of ants.

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This is a newly planted (it survived two nights outside when writing this,) squash seedling. Also grown from seed inside, under a grow light.

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I planted my squash seedling along one of the fence lines to the garden. That way they have support from the fence, as they grow bigger. I planted them in compost from last year, so they should be very happy.

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Next to my squash, I planted spinach. I planted them from seed, directly into my garden outside. I planted them yesterday, so it’s going to take some time before I see the spinach.

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Next to the spinach, is the garlic I planted from cloves inside, a couple weeks ago. I just transplanted them to my outdoor garden yesterday.

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The view of my three most loyal friends, seen from my garden. They love hanging out in the shade, close to where I happen to be.

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I’ve been spending a lot of time bonding with my new horse Fancy this week. I groom her a couple times a day, and she seem to enjoy the attention. I started to work on her hooves yesterday. They have been badly neglected. I’m going to work a little bit on them every day. (I took a class in barefoot trimming years ago. So that I can work on my own horses, at least in between trimmings. Or if I take in a rescue with trust issues. If they are going to be worked a lot, I hire a professional.)

BTW, did you happen to see the photos my 5 year old daughter took of Ghost and me, earlier this week?

Are you enjoying spring yet? Or do you still have snow lingering? We’ve had temperatures in the 60’s in the beginning of this week, and then it slowly been going up. I’ve been waiting for warmer weather, to give the horses well needed baths. Going to take care of that this afternoon. This weekend we’re having mid 80’s. It’s rodeo weekend here. It’s a big event, the third weekend of April every year. The Red Bluff Round-Up is actually the largest three day rodeo in the country. The opening show is tonight, but I don’t think I will be going tonight. I will enjoy the rodeo Saturday, and Sunday though. Both my daughter, and I are excited. It’s very festive; a parade through town Saturday, music, clowns, beautiful horses, action, and happy people. I’m not much of going to big events, but I do enjoy going to a few rodeos every year. Country lifestyle & horses, what is there not to like? Sunday is wear pink day (to honor breast cancer survivors.) I bought my daughter a new pink outfit yesterday. I couldn’t find anything for me. I look horrible in pink. I did try a few outfits yesterday.. I’ll see if I can find something today. 

Do you have any fun plans for the weekend? I hope you’re having a fantastic week so far, and that it continues in the same awesome way. Thanks for having coffee with me, I enjoyed the conversation, and lovely company very much! 

Love,

Ms Zen

Weekend Coffee Share 

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Have a seat. Can I get a cup of delicious, hot coffee for you? Or would you rather prefer the ice version? What’s the weather like at home?

We’ve had a cooler week, with some light rain. Not like the floods we had earlier. It’s actually been perfect weather for preparing my new garden, with temperatures in the 60’s. It could of been in the upper 90’s, I believe it was this time last year. Then the ground would of been so much harder. I’ve been planning out my garden, and carried out the work by hand. Digging, measuring, and digging some more. (Maybe you’ve been following the progress on Instagram?) I’ve worked hard this week. I feel it in my body. I like the feeling. I feel strong. 

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I’ve been moving some of my things to our new house, and will (hopefully) move the rest this weekend. The plan is to move at least all the heavy stuff today, and sleep in the new house tonight for the first time. I was hoping to have both my horses at the new place by now, but because of circumstances out of my control, Ghost is the only one there. I moved him yesterday afternoon. They were both supposed to come together earlier in the week, but sometimes things doesn’t go as planned. I’m bringing Fancy tomorrow morning, so it’s only two days/nights Ghost is there by himself. Our new neighbor have horses, that he can see, and talk to, so I think it’s going to be OK for a couple days. It is however the first time in his whole life that he is without other horses.  He enjoys company, very much. Horses are herd animals, so that’s to be expected. He is pretty independent, especially for his young age, and doesn’t go crazy without other horses. I take him out alone on walks every day. I started doing that three days after bringing him home in January. As soon as I felt that he would listen to me. (He wasn’t halter  broke when I got him.) I believe our walks, and everything we had to overcome to feel comfortable around humans and our crazy things, (he spent his first almost 4 years in a pasture with very limited human contact,) have helped him to become braver and less herd bound. 

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The story of trailering him to our new house is a story in itself. When the original plan of trailering Fancy (the new, older, already trained horse,) and Ghost together in a big trailer didn’t work out, I asked a good friend if he could help me. He was very willing to help me, but his trailer is a very small trailer. Horses are claustrophobic by nature, and it takes time to teach a horse to be comfortable in a horse trailer. Something I haven’t had the opportunity to really work on, since I don’t own one. I have however, walked by a big stock trailer every day, encouraging him to smell all sides, even banged on the door (to make scary noises,) and we’ve been standing next to it for a few minutes every morning, just relaxing. I usually give him a carrot, or an apple as soon as he relaxes. I tell him “good boy”, and pet him for a while. Doing this before letting him out to the pasture in the morning have been a part of our routine. That’s the closest to trailer training that I’ve been able to do with him. This we’ve done very successfully though. I thought to myself that I’m going to make this tiny trailer a similar learning experience. I would love for it to result in Ghost coming home, but not if the cost is to high. I’m against using force in training. Getting a little out of your comfort zone is necessary sometimes, but I want the end to be on a positive note. 

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For a couple hours I worked with Ghost being comfortable with this little trailer. It didn’t take to long until a couple hooves were in the trailer, I gave him the rope, and let him step up and down as he pleased, but never walk away from the ramp (I do not like ramps on horse trailers, but this one had one.) After a while we had three hooves, then four. He walked in and out a few time, with all four hooves. He had an apple in the trailer. He wasn’t comfortable. He still walked in and out a few times. I was contemplating closing the door, and taking him home. When I asked the owner to the stake to come and close the door, since I was going to be in the trailer with Ghost, while leading him in (there was a small door in the front, where I was going to leave later.) When she came to help us, he said NO, and started to get really nervous. After a few minutes I decided to call it a day, after all he had been so brave and done everything I’ve asked, despite it being very scary. No reason to end on a bad note. I could rent a bigger trailer another day. I told the owner of the boarding facility my thoughts. She offered to drive him in her big stock trailer, if I loaded him. The very same trailer we’ve been walking by every day. I was thrilled. Ghost walked right in the first time I asked, and we were on our way home. I was happy with my decision, and very proud of Ghost. He has a huge heart. He was very happy while exploring his new home, and tasting the delicious green grass. We spent a few hours exploring the pasture together. 

For the past four months while I have been boarding Ghost at Norcal Trailrides, in Anderson (CA,) I’ve been going there twice a day every day. I’m very happy to have Ghost where I live now, but I need to say that Alicia Ryan, the owner of the training facility, have been more than awesome during these four months. The facility itself is more than just kept up with maintenance, there’s constantly improvements being made. The atmosphere is friendly. It’s the first boarding facility I’ve used, and I’ve been to many, in different countries, with zero drama. She offers; scenic trail rides along the Sacramento River, boarding, riding lessons, birthday parties for kids, and colt starting – I’ve only seen happy customers ! I’ve seen clients come and go every day, and never a disappointed face. She makes everyone coming to her facility feeling on top of their world. She’s a really cool, hard working lady. I would highly recommend Norcal Trailrides to anyone in need of training, lessons, or boarding. It’s been awesome  to have access to their indoor, and outdoor arenas while doing the initial work with Ghost. The atmosphere in the stable among the horses is very calm, they all seem to like it there. It’s a great place.

It’s been a rewarding, good week. I see things coming together. That is a feeling I like very much. Spring, I’m ready! Bring it on! How was your week? 

Love,

Ms Zen

Weekend Coffee Share

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This week is intense! Do you dare to have coffee with me? Nothing bad happened, on the contrary, it’s been an awesome week. Here, grab a cup, and I’ll tell you all about it. Last week I told you about how I’ve been looking at horses, to find a companion for my horse Ghost (pictured above,) that also would be a great match for our family. I didn’t find one last week, but this week I did! I decided to place an ad on Craigslist, and I got a few replies. My hope was to not only find a new family member, but to make a difference in a horse’s life, that really needed a home. It’s easy to just go and buy a horse, but there’s so many out there, good horses, that for different reasons find themselves in bad places. (I did not write that in the ad! I only wrote that I was looking for a friendly companion horse to my gelding, sound enough for light riding.) Through the years I’ve fostered around 20 abused horses, that I’ve helped nurtured back into good health, physically and emotionally. This time my intention is to keep the horse for life. Therefor I really needed to make a good decision. I wanted the horse to be gentle enough for my 5 year old daughter to be around, and preferably be able to (eventually) take my weight as well, so that I can work with the horse. (A horse that only has kids riding it, sometimes forgets some of its training/manners.)  

A woman emailed me about a mare that she got from a really bad situation, that now was gaining weight, but still needed lots of TLC. Everything she said about the mare, and the pictures she sent, it just felt right. I went to her place to meet her yesterday, and I’ve never met a sweeter horse. Fancy is a 12 year old, registered Quarter Horse, with a great conformation. This is not a backyard bred horse, she has a long line of excellent cutting horses behind her. She does need to gain more muscle weight, and her front hooves needs work. She is broke to ride, and extremely kind. I’m not sure if she ever had her own human caring for, and loving her. By the end of my visit I saw her eyes lit up a little bit. In the beginning, it was almost like she was sleep walking. I’ve seen this before in broodmares, that only been baby (money) making machines. I can’t wait until I see more light in those beautiful eyes. We have lots of love in store for her. Fancy is calm enough for my daughter to groom, and ride. I can already see her brushing Fancy for hours, and braiding her mane and tail. I’m going to let you wait for pictures of her until next weekend. Please keep in mind that the photos of her now is going to be very different, compared to what she will look like by the end of the summer. Her front hooves might give you nightmares. Please remember that her nightmare have ended. She is on the way up. When she first was rescued, she was so emaciated that it was only a question of time before her inner organs was going to give up. She doesn’t look that bad now.

Need some more coffee? I’ll get you a refill. I think I need one myself. Fancy, and Ghost, they haven’t met yet, are coming home next week 🙂 I pounded in a few extra t-post along the fence line, making sure that their new pasture is safe, and ready for their arrival. I’m looking at a round-pen tomorrow. I’m going to need a place to work with them separately. Hopefully it will be in place at their arrival, or shortly after. It is so exciting!! A fellow blogger asked me if I’ve considered starting a Youtube vlog. I have been thinking of one day making short videos of rescue horses, and mustangs I work with. Not as a professional horse trainer, but more what an ordinary person who loves animals, can do for animals in need. I don’t see myself as a horse trainer, I’m just a girl who loves horses, and enjoy spending a lot of time with them. In my case is my stubborn dedication, calm presence, love, and lots of time that is the key.

Is your coffee OK? How is your week? We had sun in the beginning, but it’s raining right now.

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I’m planning my vegetable garden. There will be lots of work for me to do there, as soon as I get the horses settled in. As you can see in the photo of my future garden area above, the area is currently covered in weeds. Below is some photos from the backyard, closer to the house. The vegetable garden is going to be behind the backyard, safe from playing children, and dogs (hopefully.) The horse pasture is next to the garden area, and I will be able to see my horse as I work in the garden 🙂

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Is spring in full bloom at your place? I love April, it’s one of my favorite months here, before we hit the three digit temperatures. Any fun plans for the weekend? I’d love to hear more about your week! 

 

 

Love,

Ms Zen