Sunday, October 31, 2010

Turn The Page

Sitting at a crossroads in my life, I was faced with some tough decisions.  Do I continue to hold ground?  Or do I turn the page and start a new chapter?  It's easy to do what you know.  It's not so easy to let go and move forward.  But everyone needs to move forward sometime and my time is now.  

My life had developed a rat on a treadmill feel.  I just couldn't stay caught up with the day to day details and was beginning to wear myself out.  With a full time job - one that often entails "after hours" work, three horses (one of whom is bred and the other in full time training), five sheep, three adult dogs and five puppies I was pressed for time.  So I made an easy, tough decision.  

Yesterday, I drove to Bowden.  I really, really, really did NOT want to drive to Bowden.  I'm tired (and still grumpy about having to make the drive).  I would have rather stayed home and checked off things like laundry, clean bathroom, worked dogs, enjoy weather, do work-work.  But that was just a dream.  Reality involved me missing yet ANOTHER bloody exercise class (still trying to figure out why I even bothered), rushing around like crazy to get things taken care of at home, before I hitched up the trailer and hauled ass down the highway. (Don't say I had Sunday to do those things!  Today (Sunday) involved going to town for groceries and dog food (normally a Saturday job) and family commitments.)

Why was I hauling ass down the highway?  Because I took the plunge and gave, er, sold Izzy.  (My net profit on this one is in the negatives - didn't even make back purchase price.)  Why did I sell Izzy?  Because I don't have the time she needs.  I can put her in training - I do have the financial resources.  But I don't have time to ride her when she comes home.  And with her being two moving on to three - this is becoming a time sensitive issue.  The LAST thing I need is an unbroke three year old.  

So Izzy has moved on to be a teenage boys project horse.  And I'm down one animal.  One less responsibility.  And a smidge more time for the critters I do have.  

Next step is to get my puppy numbers down (from five) to two or three.  Watch for us at Mayerthorpe (Nov. 6) and FarmFair (Nov. 8 & 9).  These will be Tessa's final trials before full retirement.  Abe, really, really wants me to run Reba at these trials even though she's not finished her training.  So she may make the trek to Mayerthorpe and run in the Ranch class for experience.  As we don't have a drive yet, we won't be placing, but she needs to start somewhere.  Might as well do it now.


The little Rascal's are busy trying to get into trouble these days.  I've started taking them for walks (as a pack) and all are wearing collars.  Little Ryder and Chloe are leading with a leash and they all come pretty good to their names.  

Diva looks like she's going to have ears that stand up.  Her's are different than all the others.

Ryder, soggy, with an upset tummy.  The little fellow is feeling fine and back to his old tricks.

Grace, is such a serious pup.  She's the one who moves the most like her mom and is showing the greatest "stalking" tendencies when playing.

Can't you just hear Luke shouting "Weeeeeee!"

I must admit to adoring Diva's cute factor.  How can you resist a face like this?

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Battle

Some days I sit and wait for the other shoe to drop.  You know, the one that squashes you flat into a ball of misery and negativity.  This morning I woke up to the pleasant surprise of slushy, messy, wet snow.  Growling with frustration, I did what I could for my animals and left to earn the bacon that buys the hay and dog food.  I spent a good portion of the day worrying about the pups.  It was below freezing and wet.  

When I returned home, I discovered the diarrhea that I thought had been taken care of was back with a vengeance.  Ryder, was a stinking, shooting machine.  The poor little fart *literally* was not feeling well.  I decided he couldn't have any food and a limited amount of water.  Examining his exhibits I noticed that they were a bit on the mucousy side, often meaning an infection of some type.  Pulling out the ProGut (doggy peptobismal) I gave him a shot and went about making him a home in the garage where I could turn on the heat.  I just couldn't justify not feeding the dog and then booting him outside on the coldest and wettest night of the year - the night he'd need those calories the most.  

Poor Diva got dragged out of her house to keep him company.  Tomorrow will bring another call into the vet to see what she wants to have happen.  I'm guessing we'll be looking at antibiotics and another tube of ProGut (which I'm almost out of).  

Poor little tyke was having a tough time of it.  Here's hoping for a speedy recovery.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Puppy Play Date Pictures

Loney and Lynne came and brought Zoey back for a play date.  Thanks Loney for emailing the pictures to me.  I thought they were adorable.  

In this picture Grace watches the action - just waiting to jump in...

Little Diva having a good chew.

Diva, watching and waiting to pounce on some unsuspecting pup.

Ryder, watching the action.  Deciding if he wants to chase or come chew on someone's jacket.

Luke, taking a break on my lap.  He climbed up for a snug.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Sleep For A Week

Sleep for a week sounds good right about now.  I seem to have been on the life treadmill this past week.  Tuesday, the first work day of the week, I hit the ground running.  I prepared everything I needed for work for the week.  This was especially important as I was leaving on Thursday directly after work for Kananaskis, where I was attending a work related conference with two other coworkers.  (An adventure within itself...)  

Wednesday was Vet Day for the pups and Reba.  Also an adventure within itself....  

Thursday I had my mom drive me to work, where I got out with a suitcase...  and left for my conference.  This afternoon, my mom met me in town, and drove me home.  After having taken care of the animals the past couple of days.  

Tonight, I'm so very happy to be home.  I couldn't believe how much those little puppies had grown!  And I plan to go to bed early and dream of sleeping for a week.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Here, in the land of the Great White North, it is Thanksgiving.  Tonight after teaching my cousin how to make homemade - everything from scratch - pizza, we sat down and shared a delicious meal of pizza and pumpkin pie.  Not particularly traditional but I'm okay with that.  

Rhonne and I had a pretty interesting discussion over our meal.  A couple of months ago I broke up with a man who just didn't share my lifestyle and value choices.  Rhonne claimed he didn't get the Facebook memo and we started to discus being single, meeting people and decisions.  He has stated I need to get onto the 5 now plan.  Curious I asked what that was.  Basically, I need to talk to 5 (!!!!!) different (!!!!!) men (Eeek!) EVERYDAY!  I looked at him in horror (I'm basically one of the shyest people running.)  and said but where!?!  Where am I expected to do this???!!!  He let me off the hook today because all the malls would have been closed....  *gulp*  His response being that not having any opportunity to meet people is an excuse.  Eyes wide I looked around at the dusky wilderness surrounding my house in the country and reiterated WHERE.  

Seriously, I work with children in a profession dominated by women, my hobbies involve tremendous amounts of solitude and animals - and when I do get out into public to practice my sports - they also involve a tremendous amount of older men or marrieds.  So WHERE am I expected to meet people?  At this point he hollered at me.  Skeptically I sat back and let him talk.  I am now to meet people when I get diesel.  Buy groceries.  Run any type of public errand.  He says I have to talk to at least 5 different men each day - be it at the gas station or so forth.  In his words "you never know".

I think he's amazing because he's using this strategy to meet people.  I'm not too terribly sure it's the best strategy for me... (And I KNOW Jeanne is cheering right now - the fact that he's kicked my "box" to smithereens...)

Perhaps at Northlands dog trial I should ask for them to announce.  One country girl looking for a nice rancher type... sigh.... or perhaps I'll lay off the codeine (it's really good for bad coughs) and have another nap...

I am thankful for my great family and wonderful friends who've "got my back".  And I'm curious.  How did you meet your significant other?

Sunday, October 3, 2010


The last few months I've been think quite a bit about heritage, how to honor it and what it means to me.  There have been people who have come into (and subsequently gone from) my life and asked me to choose.  To choose between my heritage and passion - and them...  This did not turn out particularly well for them...  For a while it did make me second guess what I really wanted.  But then it became clear again.

I've put a tremendous amount of thought into developing a "farm" name.  I wanted it to have meaning.  After all, I planned to put it up on the Internet for the world to see.  (I've also started building a website!)  I had tossed around a variety of names but none of them felt "right" to me.  But I believe I've found the perfect name for me.  One with meaning and value and most importantly makes me happy and at peace.  

My farm name will be called Bar EM Legacy Farm.  Some people think I'm wrong and I should choose a name that reflects the dogs, herding or horses and cutting.  But this name honors my grandfather.  It's a reflection on my heritage.  I am, after all, a farmer's granddaughter.  With the family farm long into the past I wanted to carry some of the tradition forward.  I've applied for my grandfather's brand Bar EM (right thigh) and will use his brand as mine from this point forward (even though I don't really brand things).  

My grandfather is no longer in this world, but I know he'd be smiling down from above at my path in life.  At decisions I've made to keep my heritage and dreams alive.  Here's to the Bar EM Legacy Farm!