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Thursday, September 30, 2010


Yesterday was a day I THOUGHT would be in preperation of rain, as a late in the day and early this morning rain was predicted. 

I got all my tools together ...
got ready to section off MOST of my pasture for the winter.

Lots of different types. ? Why... well there are horse mixtures but they have too much fescue for me.  I would rather have more Orchard, then Timothy... and fescue , Alfala , and then clover...

So I purchase each type as it goes on sale.

And they all do eventually... you just have to watch when get what you want for the year and then I end up with enough seed to do my pastures with out paying $400.00 or more for seeds.

As soon as I got all happy, settled and ready to work...

Navarre had to check out what I was about to do.
While SweetPea was all alarmed and ready to run away....  It just goes to show how different their personalities are, and how I have to manage them each differently.

My pasture is in bad shape except the one tiny area I've been protecting.  They still have grass in one little section not in this picture, but when it is gone this little spot will be their last for the season.

I got the stakes in the ground, got the area defined... and all of a sudden it was darker than I realized!

I put the horses up, grabbed my bucket and started on throwing my seed.
And... The Heavens Opened WIDE making my time to seed next to impossible.

I did get most of the seed down... I did get most of it covered with hay and straw...

I did get so cold... from being so wet... I thought I'd never warm back up.

I rushed home and took a HOT shower. 

Cold Rain was not the word for it... but I got it done.

The only thing I didn't get finished was putting up the fencing.  I didn't think it the smartest thing to play with electricity in the rain.

I'll get it up later today.
Wish me luck!  Life is what it is... Yesterday was cold, wet, but productive.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Water.  I've been carrying water to the barn every day or every other day depending on how much the horses drank.    With the above average heat index this summer the horses are going through 60 gallons of water a day.  EASY...

 I fill the take to the max! Shut the tail gate... as it has fallen out going up the steep mountain where the estate is.

I then get into the pasture and push this huge container to the very edge of the tail gate... and hope I have the truck in the perfect position...

I have tried a off and on nozzel but it slows down the drain time so I've gotten to where I just get wet every day plugging it by hand in between wash the water container and filling it for the day.

It has been raining here for the last two days.  SLOW steady PERFECT RAIN...

Hopefully filling my water container...

I got about 12 inches of water... for 24 hours yesterday... and as of this morning I had gotten another 4 inches over night.   I am excited about the way the rain has happened...

It can do good and it can ruine everything... this time... it has been perfect thus far. 

Water can do so much damage...
I have been watching my one incredible farmer in the area.  There is only one I know that really works on keeping his pastures the way they should be.  He plants and covers rotating areas... This year he planted a cover crop, covered with his liquid fertilizer and with all the heat and no rain it came up and promply died.  This last week he rushed to seed more... and so I followed his lead.

I put down Orchard and Timothy seed.  covered with hay... and put down oats and rye in other areas, just to keep the soil loose and allow other inoculated nitrogen creating plants do their work as well.
I too am hoping this time it all takes.

I have not been able to section off my pasture because the ground got so hard what little upper body strength I do have was NOT enough... so  with all the rain ... ahhhhhh... it will make it easier.  ear plugs and gloves and a post pounder... ha ha ha...   thus the blurry silver thing that LIVES in the back of my truck!

The rain has allowed me to walk to and from my car and pick weeds along the way.  Easily pulled with all their seeds so not to allow them to spread futher in my little pasture.

The rain is going to allow me to pound those dreaded T post into the ground in the next few days.  getting a better cover crop on the pasture for winter.

The rain will hopefully allow me to burn all the brush I pilled up in my garden area!   It has been too dry to burn anything so... all this rain was needed more than normal.
I will then shovel up the coals and put them in an acid loving spot for the blueberries and rasberries I hope to plant in the years to come. 

No matter what I do, one thing is related to another.  The waste from one thing will nourish another area in need.    Even my paper trash is being used to line the bottoms of my newly outlined garden section.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The to do list. 092710

It is a perfect rain here today.
I plan to make pictures later, as Jerry was out of town for the weekend and I did not have a camera to use and create post.

Work. there are several boxes in my office and by the door.
Take pictures of my weekend accomplishments ( got garden ALMOST bush hogged )
Take pictures of fencing to go up.
Get Shipping
International Shipping Quotes 6 on request as I type... more expected as usual.
returns.  (being delivered to other addresses)

Get Sister grocery bag/ requested over weekend
Write JoLydia,
Write Aunt Wilda

Spread more hay/
Spread more Seed
Post about perfect rain for last two days.
Post about physical accomplishments this weekend.  A very productive day (with help of course)
update on estate.
update on living simple site.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

One of "those" days

We all have those days... and today is mine.

It started with the morning run of water to the horses.
I had to move his SUV to get my truck to the water hose.
Then once it was full, I made it to the barn where I pulled out my back AND dumped the water OUT of the truck, still in its container.
I couldn't get the top off.
I couldn't roll it over.
I had to go home, wait for Jerry to get up ask for his help, drive back over ... yada yada yada...
start all over.

Then I pissed off a customer today. 
I truly did not mean too.  But I did.  I see his side of the story, I see my side of the story, and ... well I screwed up.
Tried to eat crow... sending him an email to appologise?  Not sure that will do any good, but my side of the story doesn't matter!  I messed up!

I have a lesson later today, I can only hope I can calm down enough NOT to upset the horses, a new student etc...

It is amazing how when one thing goes down hill so fast, it is next to impossible to stop the situation from happening again as the day goes on.

Wish me luck! 

Monday, September 20, 2010

Finally! I am back.

I have had SEVERAL calls and emails wondering where I am.  I am here, but I have taken time off.  I needed time off.  Not from work, not from the estate, but just any extra time I could have for me.

I have in the weeks not writing... been cleaning house, getting little things in order and enjoying the silliest things..

Cleaning Shoes?  yes... I've been polishing my shoes,
Cleaning out my closets...
Labeling things for organization
and enjoying things I normally take for granted.

The Juice of a pear
The taste of fresh just picked foods
Talking to friends,
Drinking Wine while sitting alone at the barn.

Simple things... The things I always entented to do but never allowed myself to get around to.

Which brings about the opening of my new blog... all about simple things not worry list, to do list as this site is... Living Simply  I am not sure many of you will like it... but I am enjoying the time and the black and white pictures I am taking for it.  

It is a little more of a challenge for me and thus... something new for us all.

Finally I have an update for you on the barn... Please allow me this space for old and NEW pictures alike.

From Raw land... to getting in the property...
Then ...
Clearing EVERYTHING that was in the way...
 Finally we got a little more settled and built up an area for the barn.  AFTER moving a few bolders that were in the way...
We finally got the OUT SIDE fence up and then I had to save money for the barn...

We finally had "Some" money and needed to get started...
And so we did.

today we have gutters.
a Water catching system...
and soon to have a hand pump to get the water to the horses...

we have NO electricity but this is fine for now...

More to come... as much still has to be completed in order for me to feel like it is a fully functioning barn.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Day In Paradise.

We each have our own ideas of paradise. Mine is one of only natural sounds, watching my animals as I have enticing conversation, shared thoughts, an occasional banter of different opinions; all accompanied by good food. I know it sounds odd to many people but... there are the few that understand, and these are the few I so enjoy and long to be around.

I have ONE girlfriend in MO that no matter how long we are apart we can pick up and start to share our lives once again.
I have yet ONE in TN that we are sisters in opposite worlds but love each other so deeply our contrasts are our bonds, we compliment each other in ways few understand in a true friendship.
I have ONE in VA that is an extension of my spirit that is yet another love I can not express with the English language in today's terms. It would take that of a master of the old ways to start to describe the undertones of our attachments.

Yesterday was a perfect day with one of those friends, as if in paradise. It was like a gentle cool ride on an inter-tube down an open river with life, and activity all around me. An effortless journey with fun and relaxation, but one that fills the soul with energy for the paddle back up river.

As I drove to Virginia the drive on the interstate was a scene of mountains and little more. As soon as I got off the interstate it was a nice drive into back country, going from paved roads to gravel (only the last mile and a half). As always ... I started to miss my sweet love, as I drove the curvy roads up and over mountains, having fun on my way back down. But today was a day for me! A day to enjoy company, and just be.... the art of just being, nothing more.

The Pleasures of Life started as soon as I got out of the car with a sweet kiss from Ian, a verbal greeting from Kate (the perfect dog) a visual welcome from the Sculptures in the garden, and the gentle breeze as I walked to the front porch where dear Jo Lydia stood awaiting an exchange of loving hugs. Oh how perfect the site! Oh how luscious the way everything was set up! You can tell they love the outdoors, the chairs, the magazines, the ordering catalogs (a simple pleasure) the rugs under my feet, the pillows on the small of my back. Every view was that of beauty, the studio , the garden, the table on the front porch, even the front door with its vibrant colors screams of pleasures... to be had by all. Everything said ...welcome... come sit... come be who you are... and be with us as we are.
The gentle breeze, billowed through the sheer curtains that surrounded the porch making it a room outdoors, not just a shaded area but a lived in room.

Ian was too sweet! He immediately served us coffee and homemade muffins. So perfect nothing was needed in the coffee OR the on the muffins. Our exchange of life's current events allowed the time to gracefully move from one subject to the next. Ups and Downs, hopes, dreams, accomplishments, and the occasional what ifs...
A tour of the "new" studio, a visual of items for sale, so many orders to be filled, a walk into the house for what they say are NOT Firsts... I of course had to have a few things!!!!!

As our bodies followed our conversations... around the business, the house our souls stopped and looked at all the art lining the walls, the things that longed to be touched and spoken of. As items too have a life, some scream to share their stories... some louder than others, and some wait for their time to scream on the next visit.

Wine.    Conversation.    Another room, a room that called to me, dark, relaxing, WARM with its thoughts, and like sitting in your favorite Aunts lap as a child.
Wine.    Conversation    and food.
Oh how delicious food can be. When b eing served food, you can tell when someone has enjoyed making what is presented. You can tell when someone has a passion for it, as it comes out in everything they do. Food is one of those passions you can see, feel, smell, taste and even hear as it is being prepared. But not only was the food the passion at the table shared with me. It was served ON LIFE... you can see the thoughts of the artist, the mood in the making, the pain or assuredness; you can see the hands that caressed the plate in its making. Not only one course but three. All three the perfect example of their love of each other, their life together, and passions to do AND SHARE life with others.

Espresso.   Conversation more Espresso

And then came the time I hated to see around the bend... it was beyond the time I needed to leave to get home. My time with Jo Lydia and Ian was so smooth, so peaceful, and so enjoyable it passed all too quickly, as I had to leave, I had to drive home, and I had to feed in the dark. All tiny prices to pay for a day that filled my soul with such substance and inspiration it was equal to a week of holiday.

Please take time,   make time,   spend time with those you love!

Some see me as harsh at times especially when people pass, but I dare not leave things to chance. I shall more often call Jo Lydia, I shall write a thank you note... although there are no simple words for the gifts given to me yesterday. I shall make sure they know they are an inspiration in my life!

In the recent loss of my Nanny... I was at peace. Only because I had expressed over and over again the love I had (have) for her. I wanted nothing, but that she wanted me to have, freely given to me... at her own time... her own pace. She knew all my wants.. her cast iron skillet; of which I got! I am at peace with her knowing how I felt. I only wish I could call her today and share the joys of my experiences with Jo Lydia. To pass on the joy of my heart with someone I know would pass it on further still. Now I can only share this joy on line with those of you that read this LONG post. But please spend time with those you love! While you can. Life can change tomorrow! Life WILL change tomorrow! But what most do not expect, is for their life to change TODAY, THIS AFTERNOON, THIS very night. LIVE LIFE while you can. Share it while you can!
I must stop!
Love Amber.