October 27, 2007

Back To Tranquility

Alberta enjoys her leisurely swim.
After the trauma of the fires in California
it was wonderful to appreciate the peacefulness
of our farm and to count our blessings.

October 23, 2007

FIRES! Safe, So Far, But Surrounded


Volunteer horse people with their horse trailers
have been driving into the canyons searching on ranches
and in pasture for horses needing to be rescued.

The frustration has been with the owners that will not leave
their homes and the horse trailers are turned away.

Now, those areas are under severe risk,
and the horse trailers are returning
in the hopes to get in to rescue their horses.

The fires are covering Los Angeles to San Diego.

At the moment, the race tracks, fair grounds
and nearly all equestrian centers are filled
to capacity with rescued horses
with more truck loads of horses on the way.

We are all working together to locate private equestrian
residences with empty stalls or barns.

At our farm, we have an empty foaling stall
and turn-out areas and have made those available.

We feel so fortunate to be safe.


Yesterday, the horses were being gathered from horse ranches
and residences that were in the direct line of fire.
Most of those homes are gone now.

There were also horses in pasture in the fire areas
that were rounded up and taken to safety.

Today, we are on watch for other horse communities
that are now in line of fire.

And ...we are finally getting Federal help with more
airplane coverage to drop water on the raging fires.
(why did that take 3 days to get?)

That gives us hope that the fires will no longer
be burning out of control.
Also, the tremendous winds have calmed down.

Presently, we are all on stand-by, except for the
wonderful volunteers that are now caring for the rescued horses,
while their owners are trying to put their lives back together.

If anything good has come from this ... it is that we are
forming an Equine Emergency Central for our area
that will have information for all horse people.

However, we know that rounding up trailers and
going to the emergency sites ... just in case,
will still be the procedure.

Yesterday, people took their trucks to equestrian centers
and took trailers that were parked there.
That is how desperate the situation was.

In the future, we will also have lists of rescue sites
that will be prepared to take the horses,
so we don't have to go begging for places to put
the trailered horses in situations such as this.

Cheers to all the bold and brave people that
just grabbed halters and lead lines, jumped into
their trucks and took off to gather horses at risk.

We worked the telephones for places to put the horses.
Today, we hope the phones are quiet.


Happy to say that things are quieter, now.
We've had a great turnout of volunteers
to care for the rescued horses.

Owners are now coming to the hold-up locations
to care for and be with their horses
until they can return home.

Other horses will stay at the centers
until they have new barns built.

This entire ordeal has made us all aware
of how many wonderful horses
and horse people there are in this world.

It has also been amazing to see people
come forward that are not experienced with horses,
but have been willing to offer their help.
They have been great at keeping water buckets filled and
giving lots of attention to the horses.

This tragedy has brought many people together
that will remain friends.

There are countless stories to be told.

We all remain grateful for the amazing bravery
and dedication of the horse community,
who jumped into action in the middle of chaos
to save the lives of countless horses at risk.


This link is about our part of the rescue.


Horses Rescued ~ Scenes To Remember

The Aftermath - Horses Waiting For Owners

So many thanks for your comments!
It kept us going.
It's great to know how many people care!

We are all a community ...
no matter where we are located.

October 22, 2007

The Open Gate Saga

Did you close the gate?
Sure did ...

A Lovely Day For Cruisin'

So nice when things are calm
and peaceful on the farm, again.
Whew! That hawk business was really frightening!

October 15, 2007

Yikes! He's Back !

The past few days there has been nothing but utter chaos in our usually peaceful kingdom. The chickens have been squawking, the ducks taking nose dives into the pond and even the geese have been honking up a storm.

This ungodly commotion is all because of the ominous shadow sweeping across the sky ... taking low dips towards our yard. This red tailed hawk has turned our yard into a fly-in, fast food, take-out restaurant.
I will claify that probably the biggest racket is me ... as I come tearing out the door with my arms flailing as though I am ready for take off.
For obvious reasons, I've chosen not to post a photograph of this scene.

The hawk is either incredibly bold or semi-tame. He watches me calmly from a low tree branch to see if I am for real. He shows no indication of being startled, nor does he fly away until I am nearly half way up the tree.

The main target for this hawk seems to be our cages
of usually very quiet and peaceful Australian Rosellas.

For some reason when these birds are frightened,
they become suicidal by hanging on the edge of the cage
making themselves easy plucking prey.

The hawk does a death march across the roof of the bird cage
to the tune of the hysterical screeching of the birds.

This is followed by a wide circle around the yard
and a direct pass or two at the side of the cage.

Even "MouseTrap" took up watch-duty on the fence.

Eventually things were quiet again,
but tension definitely filled the air.
Then ... the whole process happened again.

The silent shadow swooped down,
the birds screeched for survival
and I went dashing out the door, again.

We knew something more serious had to be done.

All it took was a very high stool placed in front of the bird cages

and one very determined cat.

It worked ! Can't knock success!

By the way, "MouseTrap" is available for hire.

Humm ... wonder if Carpenter Creek might be interested.

October 14, 2007

Outside my window ... after the rain

Click to enlarge

I glanced out of my window
to see if there was still rain.

It had actually been only a small sprinkle,
just enough to make things glisten.

Click to enlarge

However, what caught my eye were these flowers,
simply begging for attention.

How could I possibly
have missed them all this time?

October 13, 2007

Wow! We've Got Rain !

This is about the best thing that has happened
around this place in ages !
Honest to goodness rain! And wow ... real mud puddles.
How terrific is that?!

Hummm ... wonder how deep we can make this hole?

Yep, Lucy got the word. It's her mud hole, now.

The little girls are not so sure.

This is their first experience with rain,
and that can be very frightening, you know.

The only things they've know have been
the lawn sprinklers and the pond.

Yikes! What is this stuff falling all over us?

Now ... this is much better.
In fact, the rain has stopped, but we'll just stay put.

We can watch everything from here.
Maybe next time we'll go for the mud puddles.

October 9, 2007

With Royal on Trail

Such a beautiful Fall day for a wonderful ride

with my best friend.

October 8, 2007

Are You Coming Or Going?

Royal is never sure whether a new pet has arrived or a pest is about to leave.

It really is confusing considering all the ducks, geese, chicks, cats, dogs and other assorted creatures that are brought here and get to call this place home.

However, a family of raccoons have decided this is a pretty swanky place to live. In the process they have not improved things a wit, nor have they done a lick of work.
Well, unless you call ripping feed bags open, and removing lids from every pot, can and container. Plus, they've become very creative in carrying objects around the property and hiding them in strange places.
I'll have to admit I admire their ability and ... smarts.
However, the last straw has been their deliberately scaring the poor cage birds off their perches. That ... has not been amusing, since we clearly know their intentions.

So, it was out with the live-catch cages, again.
We have found a lovely park not far away that has proved ... very convenient.

They have all their needs taken care of with places to hide, trees to climb, garbage cans for entertainment and few people to say ... out!

Gossip mill has it that there is a very large family of raccoons now living in the park.
Hummm.... how interesting. So far things are working out quite well.
It's great when everybody is happy!