28 March 2014

Spring Things

So may things I want to write about and so much time spent doing everything but.

We are ripping up our kitchen carpet! I have hated it for years, kitchens and bathrooms should never have carpet. The filth of it finally became more than I could handle. Underneath we found the same beautiful linoleum as is in the library. In way to bad of shape to use.

Under that we found the same wood floor as is in the bedrooms. Covered in glue.

The glue it turns out is water soluble! With lots of back breaking labor we are washing the floor clean and will, someday, have beautiful wood floors in the kitchen!

Unlike some poor people who I understand have hardly gotten to ride yet this year we have been spending a fair bit of time on poor long suffering Coyote. The Goblin Child is finally getting big enough to hold onto on horseback. Coyote is a dream and a nuisance. He maneuvers so light and easy I don’t need my hands for steering and can concentrate on holding on. He steps up to the pickup so nicely for us both to get on and puts up with her leading him very patiently.

He likes to look at things and get a little spooky. I am realizing how extremely important exact control of my seat is. We are, of course, bareback. I can feel the second his back tenses, if I allow my backside to tense in response, even just griping to hold on,Β  he stays tense. If I make sure to relax my seat muscles he immediately calms and his back softens. This is a very important lesson being driven home to me.

I put up these next pictures having read enough Fugly and Snarky Rider to know what they would say about letting such a small defenseless child so close to a big dangerous horse. To their voices inside my head I say, you just don’t know my little Yoder. She is about as cute as this darling girl and her equally trustworthy horse.

Most of the plants are started for the garden and they are coming up beautifully. We transplanted the early starts into bigger pots this week and are hoping to get the rest started this weekend. My darling husband bought me some more Petunias, these are supposed to be climbers. I can’t wait for warm weather and mature plants.

I am hoping to do some fun things in the garden for the small Goblin Child this summer. She may be too young to appreciate growing things but I am going to try a sunflower house and in the pumpkins I thought a wire panel for the vines to grow over would make a pretty cool fort. I am picturing a cool, shady tunnel all the way through the center of the pumpkin patch with tiny pumpkins and gourds hanging from the ceiling.

24 March 2014

Spring Blizzard

Or not.

We got snow at least. During the brief snow my father in law decided it was the exact time that the runts and late calves had to be sorted off of the cows. Most of the cows had come into the corrals already to eat do they got locked in and we headed off to gather the others.

When I say we I in no way mean to imply that I was doing any work what so ever. I sat huddled on the back of the four wheeler hiding behind the sheltering bulk of my husband. He makes a great windbreak and it was very cold out. I was merely along for the ride.

The cows however have been carefully trained that the four wheeler means food. Not hay bales in the corral type food but the pivot being moved so they get fresh cornstalks type of food. (See here for why that is) They immediately turned and ran for the far corner of the pivot. The four wheelers zoomed about chasing cows as best they could in their unwieldy, slow turning way.

Coyote King of the World
Coyote King of the World

The cows left.

I got my horse.

Poor Coyote, he was not happy to be out in the blowing wind and snow. At the same time he was feeling quite frisky in the bitter cold. I was glad I had enough sense to put a saddle on for once. On a loose rein he tossed his head and made delicate little leaps into the air while he pranced along. It was just like old times.

Together he and I have braved some nasty weather. Snow coming down so hard, being pushed by winds so strong I was unable to open my eyes, trusty old Coyote found his way though. Often finding calves as we went that I would have missed completely. All on his own he has dodged momma cows who objected to being moved to shelter. I didn’t even know they were there until he lept nimbly aside keeping us safe and out of their way. He has push nearly frozen new calves ahead of him using his nose to nudge and front legs to shove until we had them someplace warm. We froze and got soaked, he walked with his head cocked sideways to keep the snow out of his eyes and tookΒ  advantage of every chance to turn his butt into the wind but he always gave his all and got the job done.

And quiet kids pony, all in one
And quiet kids pony, all in one

Now I was asking him to do it again and he wanted me to know he objected. Until we got around the cows at least, then he was in his element. The only thing he likes in life besides food, is to chase cattle. He may never have made a show horse but he is one heck of a working horse. We walked the cows in as easy as could be, succeeding again where four wheelers failed.



19 March 2014

The Latest in a Long List of Many

I really want to write about our kitchen but I have to get our latest God thing mentioned before I start that. It’s little, nearly insignificant, but that makes it all the better.

We needed to get the Goblin Child a hat for summer. The sun is fierce here and she would really like to spend all of her time outside in the sun. Last year she wore darling sun hats until she got a baseball cap down in Nebraska City. The cap stayed on better but we loved all her hats.

Her head has continued to grow even if it doesn’t seem like the rest of her does. None of the old hats fit anymore. We discussed how one goes about finding a hat in her size, none of mine are small enough. Planning to look into it farther another day we went on

Not wearing her hat yet but you can tell she's excited about it.
Not wearing her hat yet but you can tell she’s excited about it.

with life.

The very next morning a teacher stopped by my hard working husbands office and dropped off a bag of baby paraphernalia. Swim

suits, shoes and…..

A darling little pink John Deer baseball cap.

18 March 2014

Spring has Sprung

As my brother has pointed out, I stopped writing. We’ve been very busy.

I went back to work for a week. It was quite the vacation, there were grown ups to talk to and I could get things done with out near as much help as here at home. Cleaning a bathroom is nothing compared with getting The Goblin Child dressed to go outside. I was still glad to be done once the week was over, I missed my rotten little Goblin Child.

Speaking of which, she and I have gotten a fair bit of riding done. On trusty old Coyote not her pony yet. Having The Goblin Child under foot makes me appreciate Coyote all the more. I give her the reins and she leads him all around. With me hovering right next to her of course, the old boy is trust worthy but spooks happen. He has had lots of experience with very small creatures underfoot. Years ago when we used to calve for real those baby calves often got confused about who was their mother. It was a different gelding that got suckled, lucky for Coyote, that poor boy was standing very carefully squealing every time the calf got hold.

Avoiding that embarrassing fate doesn’t mean that Coyote hasn’t had them under his belly and wrapped around his legs. He is very careful of the child, leaning down to sniff her every time she stops. I complain about how spooky he is when we ride him but truthfully he does pretty good. I spend most rides without being able to use the reins. The Goblin Child leans clear forward onto my arms, one hand clings to the main to hold us on and the other holds the reins but mostly holds onto the main too, helping to support the dead weight laying on them. I don’t know how anybody can survive with out leg reining.

The Goblin Childs pony did get some riding time last weekend. The whole family was up for Cades birthday (Happy Birthday Cade!!!) and Ava wanted to go for a ride. That made me very happy it seems like as she’s getting older she wants to ride less and less. Odie hadn’t been ridden in months so I saddled him and rode around in a circle or two then threw her up on him. He went as nice as could be, zipping along for the first circle around the yard. Ava wanted to keep going so we went again, he slowed down a bit. Cade decided he wanted a ride, I told his mom that I didn’t feel comfortable putting him on a horse that I had barely ridden. So we did anyway and made another trip around the yard. By then poor old Odie was really dragging. Apparently that was a lot of exercise for a horse that had stood around in a small pen all winter.

I need to start getting him in shape. First though he has to learn how to step over, to mounting blocks or say my pick up so I can get on. Yet another thing I don’t know how people live without.

It’s hard to find time to keep up with all the things I want to write now that the weather is nicer and one of us wants to be outside all the time but I am going to make an attempt.

1 March 2014

Big Brave Bears

2014-02-10 13.34.59
Why would she need movie ponies? She has a real one.

Last night we watched Brave for the first time with The Goblin Child. I was a little concerned that it might be too scarey for her but she sat enthralled. The horses, one of my favorite parts, were of little interest to her. But then the bears came on. The big fight scene at the end was fascinating.

She growled right along with them as they fought. We know what sounds bears make, they growl with their claws over their heads, and we discussed it in great detail. After the movie was over she giggled happily pretending to cower while I, in bear form, attacked her. She showed no interest in the princess or playing with a bow and arrow. No silly princesses for us, she wanted to be the bear.

I couldn’t have been prouder.