Something weird is going on with Blogger, but I'll battle on. Sorry if this post ends up looking disorganised.
I had a super day today. I went out to the Butcher horse paradise and today was farrier day. There were three farriers working for several hours trimming hooves and hot shoeing. Johnny has decided that horses have stinky feet. I'm not so sure about that! I guess they do walk in some pretty nasty stuff, including their own poo, and the hot shoeing does involve lots of singed hoof and smoke. I know most people wouldn't think much of ferrying horses back and forward, and filling troughs, but it was my idea of heaven. I was sent off to use my horse whispering skills on Dolly, who belongs to the neighbour, and is apparently a real "bitch" of a mare and hates being caught. Armed with a bucket of food and a halter I was sent forth by Emily. I used my usual strategy, which always seems to work, and had her caught within about a minute. I think it was mostly the bucket of food, but she was so good for me and even snickered at me later on when I appeared. Dolly had her hooves trimmed and was then taken to the diet paddock because she is obese. She never gets ridden and was bought as a pet, but her nature is apparently not pet-like at all. I thought she was quite sweet once I got her settled. I guess she needs lots of cuddles and handling. Unfortunately she runs away from her owner.
The most exciting part of my day was my first Zanny ride. Viv took her for a spin first because she hadn't been ridden for ages. She does have a head flapping habit that is a bit disconcerting for someone who was thrown off by Sam (who was doing the same thing first). But we got along just fine. Viv took me on the lead rein first, then the lunge, and then, once I'd got trotting, on my own. It was great fun, even though it was a bit scary because of the head. She is very responsive, requiring the softest aids (instructions given with the body)and very gentle hands. I loved her trot which was very smooth, although I had to watch her speed and slow my rising to slow her. Viv didn't have any advice about my position, and said I looked great. Emily was pleased too. Yay! A bit of sad news though. Zanny was thought to be pregnant, but we took her over for a scan after my ride, and she unfortunately isn't now. Maybe she was and reabsorbed the foal. We'll never know. Anyway, she is being raced over to the West Coast for another date with her husband because apparently her follicles indicate that tomorrow is the day for action. Hopefully I'll get lots of rides in over the holidays. Viv says a few more rides and I can come and ride her independently.
The vegetable garden is busy growing well, although my lettuces look positively puny compared to the huge iceberg lettuces growing in pure rotted horse poo that I saw today. I seem to grow great onions here. These are my biggest yet.
The Three Sisters (plus weeds and single spud) garden is racing skyward, and there's already a pumpkin forming. I have to remind some of the beans where they should be going.
The tomatoes in the greenhouse are merrily forming fruit. They should be ripe soon.
Raspberries! It is worth having a jungle of raspberry bushes in the corner to be able to pick bowls like this.
Miss Dog! Stop eating my raspberries!
My dear Monty, I miss you so much. Gertrude Jekyll is planted on your grave. She is utterly beautiful and a fitting tribute to the sweetest boy ever.
I've only got one delphinium and it looks gorgeous at the moment. New Year's resolution- get more delphiniums.
And finally, Johnny found these very cool snowflake cutouts. Starwars snowflakes!
Poor Johnny just fell of his bike and has a grazed knee. He is having a great time with his bike and now he has the wound to prove it. I think I'll be getting a new bike soon so that we can go on adventures together. Shame it isn't a horse, but Zanny seems to like me, and lucky for me Viv and Emily are very happy to share her with me.
Very frustrating blogging today, but I think this post is ok. I hope the changes to the blog post writing template are not permanent because I will not be pleased.