Tuesday, December 9, 2008

It is with something akin to relief, the year is drawing to a close. Not that it has been a rough year - far from it. It has just been super busy round here of late. Everyone is tired and cranky...but nothing 2 weeks on a tropical island wouldn't fix!
The last of Rodins 'booked' mares arrived this week. She is a real sweety to handle and serve, so everything should go to plan. He has a re-serve arriving in the next few weeks (aborted mid-way) who was a real challenge last year (!) and then lucky last, he can go back out with My Penny and Tricky (Ricochet). The 3 TBs are all vetted in foal and turned out the back (right out the back)...out of sight, out of Greg's mind!

The vineyard has been totally finished (planting) now and we have been busy de-budding (again) and getting the second tucking wires up. Greg put a copper/sulphur spray on today as the weather has been somewhat moist (YAY!) over the last 3 days.

Pleased to see a couple of purpose bred Rodin youngsters for sale on TM this month.

Rockman, by Rodin, out of 'Lips', owned by Sharron White TM Listing No.188027966 This boy has a neat attitude and a rather good jumping technique, don't you think!

Also: Filly out of 'Lucy', clyde/TB mare, owned by Bridgit Lowry, TM Listing No.191673888

Rodin is really 'stamping' his youngsters - they are so easy to spot! All seem to have the wonderful temperament and easy trainability of their sire, making them a pleasure to handle and a joy to eventually ride!

Speaking of riding: Red is sound and back under saddle. We have bought a new saddle, well, new secondhand. Red is going really well in it...and so am I! We are aiming to do the Wairoa A&P dressage and maybe a dabble at some saddle hunter classes. It's great after having a bit of rain, being able to work him without worrying (too much) about the jarring on this awful concrete-like ground. I only had 15 minutes to work him today, but even so, managed to get off with a smile from ear to ear at how well he went! I really have to work on keeping my left side soft, esp. my left hand, and keeping my sodding hands STILL. I wish I had some pics of me on him....

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Yes, it's been a while since the last post! It's been busy-ish on the farm, becoming frantic on the vineyard, very cruisy on the stud and complete chaos within the house!

Another birth notice: Bay colt to Kathryn's mare, Crysantha. A gorgeous wee boy - I am envious!

Love the 'bling'! I especially love the TB/Holsteiner cross that Rodin produces. An athletic type with super substance and bone - but not too heavy. I would love to understand more about the colour genes. Crysantha is a liver chestnut, yet produced a bay. My Penny, is a dark bay, who appears to have produced a chestnut! Below is a pic of Crysantha and foal, and at the back left of pic is another Rodin filly out of a lovely TB mare, Miss Financial. (Bay mare, ch.filly!)

More scanning next week: We have a mare here, returned after losing twins at full term. Her first visit she cycled like clockwork, conceived first serve, perfect client. Unfortunately, she was misdiagnosed as having a single, and managed to go full term with twins which died during foaling. She was given a season off to recover, but is proving difficult to breed again, although showing no obvious clinical problems according to our vets. So fingers crossed for Alex next week....

Also up for scanning next week is Maddy (my fave!) a gorgeous big wb mare who I would love to add to my wee herd! Sassy will be scanned as well - she lost twins at 7 months last season. Lady is pd+ and turning into quite a sweety...aint hormones grand?! I am holding off on serving Ducky: She is offset in a foreleg, and although well bred and an absolute angel, I am not convinced that breeding her is the right thing to do. She is nice and small and would make a handy wee hack for the farm - nothing like being able to reach the gate latches!

Red is back in work and I am enjoying being on him hugely. I need some work on myself and to stop 'locking up' my left side: Just not fair on such a supple young horse. I would love to put some pics on here....but no one is ever about to take pics of me when I ride!

We are off to the vineyard this afternoon, to start planting the 'gaps' ... about 3500 plants! My back hurts just thinking about it! Greg has come in from work to make me a cuppa whilst I sit here on MFA, not a good look, so must go muck in:)

Spare a thought for Lou at Talisman Farm (check my blog list) who is struggling to raise an orphan foal, Silas, this season. My heart goes out to Lou and family - this is no fun. Best wishes for Silas and hope he gets up and away...:)

Saturday, November 1, 2008

RG Ricochet

The filly is RG Ricochet. Thanks Michele for the suggestion! So named, for the speed she exhibits whilst bouncing off the paddock 'walls'! I've seen pinball's with less purpose! It must have been "lets pull a stupid face for the camera day"...and 2 out of 3 obliged. Cuddles didn't bother even waking up. Penny is an outstanding mum and puts up reluctantly with my antics in the paddock. Not too keen on when I drag visitors in, but very obliging for 'family'.
Lovely day off on the farm (if you don't count laying a fenceline before lunch...). No sheep, no cows, no horses. Lots off coffee, scones, bacon & eggs. Might have to pull finger tomorrow...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

First Scans

All good. 'Lady', positive and single. Was a right 'filly' in the crush, but nothing too serious. She just seems to cope badly with 'firsts'. 'Showtime' also positive and single:) 'Alex', a mare who lost twins at full term 2 seasons ago, is proving to be a little more difficult. We scanned to to see where she was at. 4.2mm on the right, 2.7 on the left. Both pear-shaped and ready to go. We served her in the yards and turned her away, looking at scanning her in 21 days. Please oh please....only one! She is a lovely big mare and will make great foals! Only disappointment was 'Maddy', and there is no real surprise there as she was transitional cycling when she arrived....went on forever! So she had a nice big follicle on the right, ready to go and should come in to season in the next 24 hours. Done.

I had to go out and molest the filly a bit more today: Most unusual looking girl! If she stays chestnut, it will be a dark liver, but I suspect she may even go gray? Bay would be best.....but I think the phrase 'clutching at straws' may be applicable!

Very sprightly girl with loads of personality and still no name. Rocketess? Ramona? Roux? Reallyfunnycolour? Any suggestions?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

At Last:

To JK My Penny (a JK Mazurati mare) and by JK Rodin, a filly foal, born outside my 'viewing' hours! I was too embarrassed to admit that I had read the calendar wrong and Penny wasn't actually due until 2nd November, not October. Duh. So I have been checking her morning and night for the last week or so. She had bagged up enormously...which is usual, but no waxing and not a lot of softening behind. Yesterday morning, I was running late and had a town appointment and missed her visit. She must have waited until the car got out of the driveway and then....

Very leggy, very well put together, jolly funny colour!!! Here's hoping that burnt orange will turn into bright bay? Lovely long white stocking at the back and no mistaking the diamond on the head for anything but just that! So now we need a name? Its got to start with 'R'....

Busy on the farm right now too: We have picked over 800 lambs away so far, the cattle are done, crutching was done on all the ewes on Tuesday and today we are shearing. The place is a hive of activity (and look what I am doing!! Lazy tart!). Reuben is out on the vineyard, debudding what vines didn't get frosted and the clouds are rolling in ominously.

Red has been out for a quiet hack today, through the forestry etc. But was full of beans and a little more exuberant than I like. So, we popped onto the river bed and did a couple of lengths of upstream/downstream. Usually that would tire a youngster out? I have obviously got the feed/work ratio wrong still! His gate opening today was super - no barging or buggering off. Lovely leg yielding and standing quietly while his overweight and overbalancing rider fussed and fecked about with the latches. But if you think we were going to walk up the big track....no show. And as for passing the huge (read: tiny) branch on the (very narrow and scary) ridge....holy hell. Might be needing some new joddies....

Calves all doing well. Including Falkor!!!! He has had a couple of rough days, but nothing that a jab of duplocillin hasn't fixed. His sight is way better and his hearing seems to be well improved too? No 'fits' for a week now, so looks like he is going to be just fine...although, a little bit 'special'! (Still tends to forget to pull his tongue back in after feeding.....)

Pic is of Lavenderlilac, Falkor and Hugo on the end. Lavender is getting too big to mess around with now - she can actually lift me off the ground with one little headbutt...and it's not a good spot to lift from.... It's been fun doing 3. They all hang out together and play. Noice:)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Rain, Glorious Rain...

After a few tense weeks, remembering the drought stricken conditions we have only just recovered from, we finally got some good rain today. 20mls in half an hour with a huge thunderstorm and now just nice and steady. Good Stuff! I even managed to get Red worked before the skies opened.

Lilaclavender Cow and Hugo Moo were joined last night by Falkor, The Luck Dragon. (Sigh...) Greg had to carry him 300 metres to the hilux, and about 2 metres from the back of the truck, tore a muscle (or something) in his calf (HIS calf MUSCLE!) and hit the deck. Falkor TLD (sigh...) rode home on the deck of the truck with Jack and Greg; Very cute, snow white with big floppy ears - hence the name. We wondered why his mother had gone off and left him...and all was revealed as soon as we got home. Falkor TLD, appears to be blind, deaf AND epileptic! Bloody hell. Worse luck, he is feeding happily (in between running in circles and flipping out) and I cannot bring myself to 'do the deed'....and nor can Greg! Lavenderlilac and Hugo are doing great, big and fat and very bolshy. They seem quite interested in Falkor and his antics...

Greg had to see a GP about his 'sore paw' and keeping him company was Deke, the foxy who visited the vet with a suspected fractured jaw.....or poison......or something..... The vets are most perplexed and Deke is now racking up a huge bill from all the multiple xrays and painkillers etc. He'll be loving the attention - and the 'inside' life. They are keeping him in overnight and we hope to know more by tomorrow.

No more 'horsey' news for the week. Aside from the fact I have been checking Penny frantically for the last few weeks, waiting anxiously for her to foal, only to go back to my books and discover I am a whole month out! She is due on 2nd November....NOT October. So as silly as I am, I am pleased....it takes the pressure off as I was juggling grazing a bit too fiercely with all the incoming clients mares'. And as Greg has just unloaded 440 lambs this week, as well as 162 R3 steers....so coupled with the rain...we should be good from now on. Red is being brought slowly into work with lungeing daily (which he appears to dislike). His growth spurt seems to have abated and now we are going to battle the spring grass. Will be interesting! I am really looking forward to climbing back on, and now have a goal - the December dressage series!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Busy Week:

Haven't posted for a week or so....been FRANTIC!

Had EQUINE STUD SOLUTIONS for a 2-day course here last week. I have had several enquiries from both North and South Islands, for fresh chilled semen to JK Rodin. He has never been 'collected' from, so we needed to teach him all about the 'phantom' and the AV unit. It was a pretty big ask of ESS to train a 23 yr old stallion, who has always performed 'live cover'. We had a really full-on 48 hours...

The ESS unit was really well set up, with constant hot water for the several different AV units, a pretty comprehensive little lab unit, complete with incubation, refrigeration, multiple microscopes and computer linkups - very impressive! The phantom was easy to set up and very stable, although Rodin was pretty aware that it was lacking in some of his basic requirements for lovin'! We alternated between using the phantom and 'live cover' ground collection, as I had a couple of lovely quiet broodies who stand like rock.

Jessie was very brave - diving in at the crucial point in time to grab the Old Boy's 'old boy' and wrestling the bugger into the AV unit! At first, Rodin appeared to be completely horrified at the interference - and rightly so! But libido won over common sense and finally Jess managed to get the AV on without the massive RETREAT! Full marks to Rodin too. He is such a lovely kind stallion to handle, nobody was ever in any danger, although he pulled some pretty pissed off faces at me during the whole process! The last act for day 2 was for me to have a go at getting the AV 'on'. I was a bit nervous....he is a VERY big boy and I know that Jessie is as strong as an ox (although obviously WAY prettier!) and I was going to be gutted if I couldn't keep up. But I was off the hook as soon as I picked the bloody AV up. There was no way I could lift and manoeuvre it with one hand, it was just too heavy when full for my pathetic wrists. So Jessie dived in (again, bless her).

We used 'Ducky' for the last serve. She is a darling wee mare and was on day 4-ish of oestrus so quite irresistible to our aged romancer. Unfortunately, too irresistible. With one fell swoop, he thrust aside the much tired-of AV and went straight for the money shot!!!

Had to laugh. Cunning old bugger!

Still, really pleased with our achievements for the 2 days. We achieved so much in so little time - and my confidence level with teasing and serving has soared. It was great to have such a professional team, Keith and Jessie, who were calm and confident every step of the way. They knew just when to push ahead, and when to retreat. And I have to say that after 48 hours being handled by Keith, Rodin is being far more respectful to me! I can confidently stand in the corner of the large yard with a cycling mare 20 feet away, and ask him to "stand", and he won't move a muscle. Brilliant!

Since then, I have successfully served 5 out of 6 mares in the last 4 days. The little darlings all came on at once (handy) and I have been running faster that a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs! I was so pleased to see Rodin had been eating all of his dinners....til I saw the bl**dy rams licking the bowl clean this morning. Rodin standing back and watching them bemusedly. Anyone got suggestions for boosting his appetite? And what about hanging feed bins? Which are the best?

Pet quota has gone up by one. Lavenderlilac cow has been joined by Hugo moo. Very dehydrated, cute little orphan bully boy. Have jabbed him with some drugs, got electrolytes into him and fingers crossed he will start to at least smell better soon!

OK. Fingers falling off. Til next time:)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Pony Porn and the New Teaser!

Today was the day we designed the 'wee collector'.

We need quantities of mares urine to use for semen collection....the old boy simply won't produce it just because we need it! So the urine from a cycling mare is used to 'tempt' the stallion onto the phantom where he is fooled into service.
So out came an old cover, an empty calphos container, a handful of foam and some zippy clips. As you can see by the pic, we attach the receptacle to the back of the cover. Diagonally seemed to work quite well, as the corner fitted snugly between Duckies butt cheeks! I partially filled the container with lightweight foam rubber, which stopped the 'wee' bouncing out again and also cut down on the noise:) Ducky very kindly filed the container, and now I have the dubious task of freezing into cubes....don't ask for ice and a slice when you drink at our place!!!!
Also, the teaser. Check him out! That's my uber-Red! What a charming, seductive gentleman he is: Just like his old man! He showed me a new side of himself today - and he is going to take the pressure off Rodin this season by doing a little bit of the teasing for him. I was very impressed with his attitude, and no, won't take it for granted. I will only be able to continue to use Red as long as he can stay calm and collected and pretty much disaffected by the job!
All in all, a great horse day. Mares are looking fab, Penny getting closer to foaling. Will serve Sassy tomorrow and see how we go:)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Penny's Bagging Up!

Oh. My. God.

What a rack! She is due on or around the 2nd of October. Very grumpy with Rodin (but it IS all his fault) and a little stand-offish with Cuddles. Gorgeous weather to foal in right now....but we all know that means squat when push comes to PUSH. Lots of glorious green grass underfoot says we couldn't have got that DOLS better (Date Of Last Service).

Got an email from a client with a mare in Wairoa today to let me know she had foaled successfully a HUGE chesnut 'something'! Out of a Gizzy-bred Chesnut mare, 'Red' (another one) so will update the sex on that as it comes to hand. (It's a colt:)

Had a lovely mutual grooming with the 3 TB's. Ducky lying down with her head in my lap, Lady having a smooch against my back and Sassy (yes, SASSY!) snuggling up too. Very irresponsible teenagy type horse-love going on....oh for a camera! So nice to sit in dry grass in the sun, bit like summer:) I have to organise Ducky to be un-caslicked and then I guess, we are all go for the start of the love-fest. Rodin will be so pleased!


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Thats The Way It Goes...

It's 22 C degrees in the shade. In September. How cool is that!

Redman is a lucky lucky horse. So far, he has seen the dentist, had a couple of sessions of physio, a gorgeous new set of shoes and a new rug. Meanwhile, I am fighting with a wisdom tooth, a stiff neck and leaky gumboots.
Red is going through an active growth phase...which has made him 'ride' a little unevenly this week. We have been lungeing for a few days now and yesterday I thought he was twisting a bit at the canter - well today he is really not happy. A combination of things? Growth spurt, physio and blacksmith changing his balance behind? I must try to upload a quick video one of these days:) Greg was horrified to have to trot him out for me this morning. (Greg dishes quite badly with his near fore....) "What do you mean...AGAIN!" was something I was hearing too much of. "JUST BLOODY TROT - AND TRY TO GO IN A STRAIGHT LINE" was the reply from the top of the driveway. I guess if he needs to have a few weeks off, it means Rococo will get a look-in.

Lambs have all been in for another drench. Some of them are flirting with mint sauce.....HUGE! The calving has had a couple of hiccups: a dead set of twins (and a live set), a couple of Dr. Toyota jobs (3 actually, nil survival for calves) and 2 with navel-ill. One was brought in to me, Lavenderlilacow; a gorgeous but huge heifer calf that was/is the most peculiar shade of gray, hence the stylish but completely impractical name. 3 days of penicillin and she's as right as rain. Bit of a shame we missed doing the other one - but we didn't realise how treatable it was and to be fair, weren't sure about the diagnosis. Sounds harsh, but there are over 300 cows out there.... and at least Greg is willing to bring me the sick ones to have a go with.

The farm is looking amazing. Lush green growth everywhere, trees in blossom and leaf-burst. The vineyard probably needs a look-in....we are pretending it's not there so we don't have to crap ourselves at the thought of frost-fighting too early! I cannot believe the temperature outside today. I must start a new diet so I can wear shorts without making birds fall out of trees...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Red Has a Dentist Appointment

The Inside Story on RG RedMan
....This made me want to run inside and grab him a toothbrush!

We checked Red's teeth out first, and as he was only done 8 months ago, there wasn't a lot of concern. However, Gary was worried he had found a sliver of bone/tooth embedded in a gum right at the back...after a bit of poking and pulling, discovered it was another tooth erupting!

We headed up to the yards to 'do' Rodin and Cuddles. Rodin was happy enough to be prodded and poked, but Cuddles wasn't thrilled. (I know how she feels). Just before her turn, the weight of the rainwater on the macrocarpa branches got too heavy for the old trees, and with a huaring great crunch, down they came. The world might as well have been ending as far as old Cuddles was concerned and she performed passage and piaffe with enough zing to put Blue Hors Matine to shame! I was a bit gutted I had left my camera in the car - but it was raining fairly steadily and I was wet through. Would have been great to catch her antics on film. Not to mention the ginormous tooth that popped out into Gary's hand as he was doing the prelim exam! That explains the nasty breath she has had of late! A visit well needed!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Time Flies....

....even when you're not having fun! Have had some lovely hacking for the past week, ground to a halt with risen clinches and the desperate need for my Uber-Farrier to appear with tools in hand. Thanks to Trade Me I now have a set of alligator clinchers to deal with the risen nails...but they need to be pulled ultimately and I am not risking lameness due to bad management.

Michele on Reilly and me on Red, had a wicked mid-week hack over the farm, down the gorge and into the redwoods. There were a couple of logs laying about, just begging to be bounced over - which we did. The boys enjoyed it and managed to keep us on our toes with their party-attitude antics....gotta love that spring grass! The following day we took them both for a short stretch-out over the farm, but they were again on their toes and bouncy, keeping the challenges coming. With the rain and warmer temperatures, the grass is really coming away thick and fast. They all seem to be on rocket fuel and it can be pretty hard on the wobbly bits!

We finished drenching ALL the lambs in 1 day last week. With 3 of us mustering different paddocks at once, it made for some pretty tense rendezvous at the yards! The only major cock-up was with the closest mob, directly across the road from the sheep yards. It should have taken about 15 mins to muster them over, but ended up taking over an hour. The lambs were all jacked up on spring grass and broke repeatedly, driving both man and dogs to despair! Between 6-10 of the little feckers took off up the road and didn't stop for nearly 2kms! You'd have to wonder where the hell they thought they were going....

Calving is in full swing. Lots of wee mookies bouncing around now, and with minimal problems...touch wood. Without a doubt, a huge improvement on last season. I may have to go rescue a bobby calf for a pet this year?

I have the dentist (horse) coming today. We are going to check Red, Rodin and Cuddles. Red has a wolf tooth that may require some work. Rody is just a check-up and Cuddels....well....that could be a major. I must try and remember to take the camera....

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Good 'Horse Day'

A gorgeous sunny day just begging for some horse action, sums it up perfectly. I brought 2 broodies in from out the back, JK Glamour Girl and JK My Penny. Penny is due to foal on or around 2 October, and looking great. Glamour Girl (aka 'Cuddles') is an antique and just needs a little extra love! They are in with Rodin now, as they are a good 'family unit' and can stay out of trouble together. The 3 TB's, Duckie, Lady and Sassy can stay out the back for another few weeks yet: I like to see their coats through before I start any serious teasing and they are all still woolly and wild.
THEN:! It was RG Rococo's turn for some much needed attention. He hasn't been touched for far too long and boy was he happy for the session! I brought him over to the round arena and did some leading/tying-up followed by a good grooming session and a bit of maintenance. What a lovely natured colt. He is now officially 2 years old (real time is November) and feeling his 'oats'. I am in a bit of a quandary as to how I am going to manage 2 entires this season....maybe more yarding and stables etc etc etc. He was very well behaved and I am looking forward to another session with him this week.
Everybody had their rugs off for a couple of hours and got some much needed sun on their backs. Gawd...I know how good that feels! The only downside was that with this poxy flu, I don't feel like riding at all, and Red NEEDS the work! Oh, for a body-double....

Sunday, August 24, 2008

RedMans Big Day Out

I am so proud of my youngster, RG RedMan, after we attended a local Training Comp. during the weekend. We entered the Saturday 'Ride and Review' test 0.3. He warmed up well on the lunge, listening to all verbal commands in spite of several whizzy youngsters flying about! He was a little 'bouncy' and fresh when I got on board, but settled quickly and gave me the confidence to at least Enter at 'A'.

I am learning (albeit slowly) that this horse is REALLY sensitive....and my usual heavy thuggish way of riding needs a lot of work! But he is also very forgiving and when I get the buttons pushed the right way - WOW!

I wasn't prepared to do the canter-work in this test, as we are both a little too unbalanced, but we are working on this at home. He was a little fussy with the bridle, hand-related (!) and some rhythm was lost through this, but all in all, pretty good. We ended up with a score of 58% and some nice judge comments.

Day two was tests 0.1 and 0.2. Nice and easy, no canter. The day before had taken the sting out, and Red warmed up quickly and kindly. We were 2nd to ride in the first test which went beautifully! Good rhythm, less fussy, good impulsion....all the boxes being ticked! We scored really well and ended up in 2nd place! So proud of him!
The second test was an hour and a half later, in steady drizzle with a few 'surface issues'. A lot of riders worried about slipping on the rapidly-turning-to-slush grass. We warmed up with some trot-work and lots of up-down transitions, which I am still a bit ham-fisted with and need to learn to use more seat and legs! Red was knackered! I had to squeeze every last drop out of him, and he rose to the challenge, finishing on a very credible 75% in second place again! I AM SO PROUD OF HIM!!!!!!! He is easily the nicest horse I have ever sat on (apart from his daddy of course) and I just can't wait til our next 'outing'. Two blue ribbons. Yay!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Just Another Day...

A non-horsey day. Only because my cunning Red decided that I could whistle and call all I liked this morning, but the spring grass was a better option. And knowing my love for traipsing through 25 acres....knew he was pretty safe!
Instead of (wisely) going for a ride, I decided (unwisely) that it was time to do something about the roosters. For months I had been putting off the nasty chore, but after watching Jamie Oliver's 'Chicken Episode' the other night.....well...the time was right. I managed to catch 6 of the blighters and lock them in the shed with 2 on the run. With no hardened kill-thirsty help to be seen, I did a classic 'me' and headed back off indoors to start painting the lounge ceiling. After about 10 minutes, 2 ladder-climbs and 3'sq coverage, the help appeared! Works every time.
I'm not going to give all the gory details. The job was done fairly humanely and we were now faced with a pile of flesh and feathers, which Greg assured me would come off WAY better with the help of a little hot water. 'A little hot water' involved: The building of a roaring fire, the setting up of an old cauldron full of (rusty) water and a cup of tea break whilst waiting for the water to become usefully hot enough. It was at this point the other two roosters showed their noisy faces. We decided to nail them with the shotgun. After a little stalking, to-ing and fro-ing, swearing, ranting and finally blasting we had a total of eight to deal with.
I have to say, the hot water works! The feathers just fell off! I wish I could say the same about the insides of the damn critters. That was MY job, as I had the smallest hand. Bugger. What a waste of my gorgeous french polish that took me ages to get right. Anyhoo....now I have a freezer full of lovely free-range, pre-crowing, man-chooks.
The weather has now turned to custard. Red is still nowhere to be seen. I guess it's back to the paint job...

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Season Approaches....

OK. Where to start. As the 2008/9 breeding season approaches, I am starting to monitor the mares a little more closely. As their coats start to 'shift', so do their attitudes! I have 3 new TB mares of my own this season: Sassy, by Hula Town, Lady, by Columbia and 'Ducky' (Garbo's Last) by Mellifont. I have 2 mares to foal this season, Glamour Girl and JK My Penny. Industrial sized rolls of cotton wool required!
In between working the youngsters and visits to the broodmares, I have lifted nearly 2000 lambs for my long-suffering-non-horsey husband. Docking is a great way to keep fit, although, if you are partial to lambs tails (EW - I know!) all of the benefits are negated as you tend to scoff your days work! We have had a great lambing. Only ended up with 2 pets, Bruce and TinkyWinky, who both 'lost' their tails yesterday. Calving is now imminent. I think we are calving around 300 cows (beefys) this year....will double check that. The vineyard is awaiting a team of pruners....once again, my best layed (laid?) plans have come to sod all when it comes to taking charge of that job! ...Maybe next year?