Sunday, January 24, 2010

A winter's day

This is what I crave most in recent days! Lol. It's cold outside!! I like to hang out by the wood stove and lots of wood is needed to keep it going. This past week we have been seeing the effects of El Niño. We have been getting a little snow almost every day. Look here for an explanation of this particular weather pattern.

Here's Yalla! looking for me to feed her in the morning. It looks dark, doesn't it? I think it was around 7ish, daylight. These trees are the same ones in my header photo but from the opposite direction. Aren't they pretty? We planted them when we first built our house.
I like the snowflakes in this photo. Same tree as above, only it's from a different angle. Notice how half the tree is heavy with snow while the other half has far less? The wind was blowing while it was snowing.
This strange picture is looking out of my bathroom window. I like how the snow collected on the screen.
Here are icicles in the barn. This afternoon the horseshoer came to trim the horses' feet. Yalla! neighed and neighed while he worked on Scout. Then, when it was her turn, she played hard to get. Not too bad, but she is usually much easier to halter than she was today. And then, she was extremely restless and pulled her feet away a few times. The shoer was very patient and said that this time (her third time being trimmed) she didn't have mama telling her it was okay and she was just behaving like 'kids' do. She hasn't been turned out for several days either. I guess to him she was just acting like an Arab. lol. For the first year, he won't be charging me for her trims either. He considers it her training and an investment so he has an easy horse to work with in the future. Annie wasn't really well behaved either. She wigs out when he picks up her off back foot sometimes. She's not awful but she pulls her foot away and won't stand still.

I must say that my farrier is about the most efficient farrier I've ever worked with. Too often he comes early. It takes him an average of 15-20 minutes to trim a horse. I never want to cancel or reschedule appointments because he's booked out for weeks. He marks his calender for the next appointment 8-9 weeks from now and then his wife calls to remind me a day before the appointment. He's definitely a keeper.

Tonight, I went out and visited the horses in the dark. I decided to put a blanket on Annie since the wind chill has been so cold (30, feels like 18, in the evening) and there's a possibility of more snow. She's getting better about blanketing but she's not good yet. I went into her stall carrying the blanket and she wanted to be rubbed on her neck until I pulled the blanket out to put on her. Then she ran out of the stall and stood looking at me. I waited a few minutes and she came back into her stall to me. I rubbed her back and sides and everywhere with my hand but again when I presented the blanket she ran away. We did this again and then she stayed for me to lay the blanket on her back and strap it on. There was a time when she wouldn't ever have come back to me and the blanket so I know I am making progress. She is hypersensitive and flighty but she loves to be scratched and rubbed. Basically, she's a very 'people' horse as long as you take your time with her.

We have a game that we play where I sit on the rails and she'll walk up alongside me. I will slide onto her back and she'll walk around and then back to the same place alongside the rails. She stops there and I get off. I'll scratch her neck and talk to her and then climb back on. She walks around again, veering this way or that, and then again stops by the rail where I climb off.

Her daughter is very much like her. I cannot go to the barn without visiting Yalla! She likes me to rub all over her body, especially between her front legs. Tonight, when I rubbed her belly and between her back legs she turned her head towards me and stuck her nose in the air like she wanted to groom me. Then I hugged her and we shared kisses. She sticks her nose straight out towards my face and breathes. She is such a loveable horse. I am so glad I have her.

A winter's day - song: Sell me a Coat, artist: David Bowie, album: David Bowie


Grey Horse Matters said...

Beautiful pictures of the snow. Glad we're only in for rain today though.

Annie and Yalla sound like really special horses who love their mom and your games and rubs.

Breathe said...

What a great farrier! Mine is also patient with Lily, who has come a long way, thanks to his patience when shoeing her.

I wish he was faster, he takes an hour per horse, but he's great to talk to, and Lily is sound - she had some lameness when he started on her.

Thanks so much for your comment on listening to your head vs. heart. I've been thinking of it as I move one with figuring out what to do with Cibolo.

Annie sounds like she does well with your patient approach. And a loving horse is such a great reward.

Sydney said...

Stormy is very much a scratch-me horse. I can get all of them going though. I'll go out in the middle of them all and scratch one that is standing beside another and before you know it both horses are grooming eachother. Hahah

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

That is one of the things that is nice about being able to raise a horse from birth. You can love it to death and it will love you back. Once horses start getting older it is difficult to break the ice if they had bad early experiences with humans and developed a chip on their shoulder about it. The picture with the snow on the screen gives an interesting effect.

fernvalley01 said...

Great photos of the snow! Thanks for sharing your precious moments with your horses as well

Andrea said...

Yalla sounds like such a wonderful girl!! You have done a great job with her!! And you are so lucky to have a farrier that won't charge for the first year! I pay 35 for every trim every time!! You got some really pretty pictures of the snow and ice!