Saturday, April 30, 2011

Steal away Saturday

Up early to the barn, trying to outwit the local eagle and the local hawk, who now see the Pony UP farm as a "fast food chicken place". Five of my hens are gone...poof.. SOOOOOOO, we decided that the chickens cannot run free any longer or else they will all be gone. Susy, Ryan and I worked on some fencing and a new coop to keep them safer....I will let you know how it goes. Chickens were not impressed with the new residence...not one bit. We had to clip wings and then put them bodily to bed tonight.
and then....we had our big day at Chalice Farms to show off our Pony Up horses. Long day but very productive.....thanks to Lea of Chalice Farms and her crew.....and thanks to all my friends who helped today.....Sarah, Jessie,Brenda, Hannah, Ryan, Susy, Barb, Kathy.......I couldn't have done it by myself...thank you so much for loving these horses! The exciting news is that Cooper is broke! We didn't know it...but Jessie was our test pilot and climbed on....he was so good! We are proud of him, he looked beautiful under saddle...such a nice trot and so athletic! WOO HOO!!
Meghan has done a great job with Max and we are so excited to see them go tomorrow...

I also want to thank Jen and Tara for bringing us a lovely gift! I will take pictures of it is fabulous! Nice to meet your boys! Next time bring your trailer so you can take a horse home!

Long day and I am tired...tomorrow will be another long day...up early to take Max to the horse show, then an afternoon of volunteering at the same show! Come and see us at Green Hills in Gig Harbor. Max is on stage at ten in the morning...he would like a big audience, so bring friends.

Off to bed, hope your day was as good as ours...

Pony Up fortune for tomorrow:

You won't know unless you try.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Fast and Furious Friday

The week has flown job, new routine..busy weekend...deep breath!

Pictures of Cooper, isn't he simply lovely? Dressage, hunter, eventer.......he could be anything....and he looks so good, feels so good.....enjoy the pictures. Also pictures of baby birds in loft. Ugly, but sort of cute?~

Come and see Cooper tomorrow at Chalice Farms!
Then see Max on Sunday morning at the LPSDC schooling show at Green Hills in Gig Harbor~

Pony UP fortune for tomorrow...
It takes one to know one.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Monday rolls around........

Spent the morning in ER (not for member).....must have used every Blackberry application there was to update, or look at and pass the time......I got Facebook loaded to my phone and even managed to load pictures from it. Just when I was starting to hate my phone and long for something comes through like a champ. Family member home and resting.....things are ok for now.

A huge thank you to Caryn for all the help in the past year......we will miss her.....thanks for all of your time, effort and was fun! Good luck in school and with your horses.

It is raining again.....kind of chilly outside...definitely jacket weather today.....hoping for a sun break soon. I had to blanket Lizzie this morning.....she was standing in the rain, shivering...would not go in her I got the blanket back out, covered her and voila, her shivering stopped.

Don't forget the Ride and Review at Chalice Farms next month! Beth Anderson, Dannelle Haugen (see information at will see you there if you are participating! Beth and Dannelle are both capable riders/instructors/trainers....the day should be fun!

Louie had a horrible weekend, he was sure there was something in the woods...the normally comatose Louie became a snorty, prancing, nervous wreck.....and nothing would calm him.....he wouldn't eat, had diarrhea...and was snorting so loud I could hear him clear across the farm. I looked in the woods, looked on the side road, looked up in the trees, looked at the nearest neighbors......nada.....I saw nothing...but he sure did. Finally this morning he is calmer and resumed eating. Must be the local werewolves or something equally as scary.

Don't forget to come and see Max at the schooling show at Green Hills....we expect him and Meghan to take first place! Just a warning.

Enjoy your chilly afternoon.

Pony Up fortune for tomorrow:

Count your blessings instead of your worries today.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter Sunday

Sorry to see the rain come back for Easter morning....we had such a beautiful day yesterday. I hope you have a great day with family and friends!

Yesterday with the beautiful weather, we were able to get the new building framed in and siding will be next.....and then we will have extra hay storage or an extra is such a nice building.....we did a great job on it!

We also took Lizzie down to Chalice Farms....Sarah introduced her to the jump arena, lunged her a little, had Hannah sit on her and ride her a bit. Lizzie was a good girl for ...a mare! I am not a mare person...too much drama. Anyway the weather was good and we enjoyed ourselves. Thank you to Lea for the use of the arena....the farm looks beautiful and we love Fiona! Thanks to Sarah and Hannah for working Lizzie.

Don't forget next weekend at Chalice Farms between 2-4, we will have the Pony UP horses adopt-a-horse-a-thon.........treats will be served! Come meet us and our horses!

Also mark on your calendar......May 1st.....the Lower Puget Sound Dressage Club schooling show..( will be showing in the level one and two....with Meghan Markham riding him! are thankful for the help of Meghan. I watched her ride Max last Friday and he looked GREAT!

Next on the agenda is the Pony Up Tack and Garage sale.......May 7th (Saturday) from 9am to 3pm......all sorts of stuff, western, english (dressage mostly) some great garage sale stuff.....barn stuff, housewares, clothes, light fixtures.....all proceeds benefit the rescue. There will be parking in our arena, from the side road.
If you have items you would like to donate.....give us an email...we can pick the items up if you are in our area.

I lost another hen yesterday......didn't even see it, but she was missing at bedtime. I looked around this nothing....just plain gone. Lots of predators with families to feed, I guess. My mistake to let my chickens free range...but they love getting bugs from the manure pile and taking sun bathes in the arena. I may have to make a pen.

Ryan graduates in two weeks! We are so proud of him! He will also start an engineering job at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard towards the end of May.....way to go Ryan! We will have a little Pony Up Party for him mid month to celebrate his success.

We have baby pigeons in the barn. Don't get me wrong.....I hate pigeons in the barn. We have two fake owls..we chase them off and yet, Mrs. Pigeon snuck in two eggs, stealthily hatched them and then I found them. I am no baby killer....I will chase them off when they are big enough to fly away. I do have to say that they are cute...I had a short amount of time where I thought the mother was not coming back...the babies felt cold......I held them in my hands and warmed them...then thought about how I was going to feed them,,,,,,googled it on my phone......then thought I should give it a I put them back.......returned later to see Mommy feeding them.......phew.....what a relief....I wasn't cherishing feeding baby birds.

The swallows are back too and they are making necessary nest repairs, surveying the best sites for new nests and already catching bugs. We love them. Yesterday sure seemed like spring.....a very welcome warm day....really lifted everyones spirits.

Off to the races.......enjoy your day....and I hope the sun comes out for at least a while!

Pony UP fortune for tomorrow:

A stranger offers advice.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thoughts on a Thursday

The weather has been pretty good the last two days...a tiny bit of rain, a good amount of sun....cold in the morning and fairly warm in the afternoon. We have let Ollie and Cooper out on pasture for the last two afternoons and they have loved it...they don't want any hay at the end of the day and they feel great! The grass is so good for them....I wish we had grass for everyone.....big green of my big dreams.

Monday, Ryan and I delivered the donkeys to the Clark County Fairgrounds.....we met the donkey transporters for Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue.......nice professional folks.....I was sad for the donkeys to go....I cried for a while after we think of how far you have brought them and what they have been through....I just had to get a grip on isn't the first time we have sent someone off to a new adventure..but I never get used to it....we get attached to all of them....donkeys or horses or doesn't matter. Thank you Ryan for going with me and for handing me a kleenex without saying a word about my tears.

Wednesday, Sarah and I groomed inmates at the small Pony Up barn.......washed Churchie's legs.....combed tails, pulled manes...the usual grooming stuff. This morning, I took the trash away from Nina's barn....cleaned stalls and scratched Blue's back for a long while......he came to me asking for grooming.......which is odd for him....he is and has always been standoffish. In the afternoon, I put plastic up on the new shed building...we have more work to do on it....another couple of walls and a doorway.....then we can put hay in it. We are always short on hay space.

We have our upcoming adoption day on April Chalice Farms....between 2 and 4pm....snacks and drinks will be served......horses will be walked around.......Pony Up volunteers will be there to meet you....Thank you to Chalice Farms and Sarah for putting this together!

Max is still in legging up training and doing well......such a good boy! Meghan likes him and is doing a fabulous job with getting him in shape....Max will be shown at the Lower Puget Sound Dressage Schooling show on May 1........come and see him ..such a beautiful boy.

We also have our tack/garage sale coming up on May 7th......9am to 3pm......all kinds of stuff....some western , some english.......and a lot of garage sale stuff.....come see us.....and pray for sun!

Pony Up fortune for tomorrow:

Don't forget when you leave why you came.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Seriously Saturday

It is not raining..but it is cold......I am thinking about turning the heat on...and then I decide I won't.....I won't be here long enough to really enjoy to the barn in a few minutes.
We have a lot of chores today.......gravel, lumber......a thorough cleaning, sort through and plan our tack/garage sale (pray for weather that is sunny)...plan our donkey road trip for Monday, and assign some volunteer tasks.
I went and rode Max yesterday for a little has been a long time since I rode...various reasons that are too boring to go into, but anyway Max was a good boy, looks lovely under saddle. Thank you Meghan for legging him up, trimming him up and making him look beautiful! Training level here we come!
Thanks to the folks who have donated to our tack sale...Tina H, Beth N, Carmen F...we are going to have some really great items......tack trunks, bridles, western saddles, english saddles, english bridles, saddle pads, horse blankets, sheets, boots, well as some garage sale items. Come see us May 7th from 9am to 3pm. If interested in presale.......we have a nice Prestige dressage saddle, some hunt seat saddles (Stubben and Passier), a set of weymouth bits, me or call me. Most of the saddles are mine.....most are 18" seat, med tree, long flap....

Beth, it was great talking to you and catching up......see you soon!
Carmen, thank you for your generosity.
Sarah........thanks for your support and friendship.
This has been a long week, full of surprises....

Enjoy your day.....

Pony Up fortune:

If you lie, keep a notebook, so you can remember what you said...

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Cool, gray day......up early and to the barn. Prisoners waiting for breakfast...I am scolded by the tossing of a head, the laying back of ears, the banging of the gate...everyone is hungry. I tell them to hang on....let chickens out, let cat out....feed chickens, and THEN throw hay......but hay isn't enough...they WANT grain and so the banging, short neighs, head tossing continues. I don't fall for it usually, I make them settle down or I will have a huge chorus of chaos. Winston in particular creates a scene like something from the Black Stallion..he can rear, buck and kick in a twelve by twelve stall and make you think he is coming right out of it.
We simply shut the top door and ignore him....or else it is like feeding a fire..the next time he really acts up.

It is cold this morning and I regret having taken the blankets off......but it is mid April and gee....they should be out of their coats by now. Then I remember last year, I think I kept blankets on until June or the middle of was lousy weather last year.

Max is coming along fine...probably glad to be working and living in a regular barn. He is signed up for the Lower Puget Sound Dressage Club schooling show....May Flowers...on May 1.......come and see him!

This weekend, we have a list of chores....things to do, people to see......horses to brush, clip, blankets to take to the cleaners, a few things to build and some fencing to put up..the usual list of things to do include cleaning up manure, raking up old hay, cleaning barn stall doors (messy eaters they are!)

Monday I take the donkeys to Vancouver to catch a ride to California to go to Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue. Great folks......good program...we are sad to see the little guys go, but this will be a better place for them, out of harms way, good donkey food and experienced donkey staff. We simply do not have room for two extra bodies at this point.

I start a new full time job at the end of the month and I will no longer have Fridays off...but I will make a little more money to feed the hungry mouths we keep and that is a priority.

I had someone call yesterday and say that unless I took their horse, they were going to shoot it. I can only do so much...We only have so much land, we only have so much money....I cannot wave a wand and make everything better. I seriously wish I could....these types of calls upset me..I can give resources but we are at capacity and it is no help to our own residents if I overcrowd or overcommit financially.
These are certainly heartbreaking times for all of us.

Off to run errands........enjoy this gray Washington day as best you can.

Pony UP fortune for tomorrow:

It is no mystery.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pictures from today...Cooper and Ollie

Thoughtful Tuesday

Rambling thoughts on a sunny (at least right now) Tuesday morning. It has been a whirlwind week, always so much to do, places to go and of course people to pay. Horses are expensive.......if you are reading this and you own horses, you know what I mean......if you don't own horses, imagine yourself unfortunate but financially sounder than the rest of us who have them. Vet bills, hay, shoeing, training...and what I can incidentals......supplements, treats, boots, fly sprays, ointments (I love this word! sounds good when you say it, doesn't it?)

Yesterday Max went to a barn for two weeks of conditioning and beauty treatments, so that he can attend a schooling show and be ready to show his beautiful self for our open house adoption (sponsored by Chalice Farms and Cutter Creek) ...he is so ready to be adopted! We will also have Cooper, Lizzie, Louie and Blue on hand. Snacks will be provided as well as refreshments......we will probably have a mobile tack shack available. I am very appreciative of the gals who have helped put this together...I am very fortunate......thank you Annie, Sarah, Lea, all have huge hearts for these horses. Look for the flyers at your local feed or tack store....or email us for more information.

I am looking for help in grooming the Pony UP horses for the adoption events......we need mane pulling, tail banging, brushing/trimming of whiskers.....also volunteer handlers for the events! If you can help and are experienced.....give us a shout!
As well, if you would like to host an adoption event, we would be happy to bring the whole herd...okay, well maybe not Beaver...but the rest!

This rescue program is a labor of love. Sometimes we get our hearts broken, sometimes our hearts burst with pride. We have disappointments, setbacks, mountains that seem impossible to climb....days when we need more than we have.....and days when we have to say no. I hate to say no......I see a needy horse and my immediate thought is to help it, without thinking it through....but when we are full to capacity, I have to say no......I have to offer resources, I may offer hay ..but sometimes it kills me inside to know that I could not really help in the way I wanted to. It is the problem with rescuing.....knowing when to say when, how much you can afford, how much room you have and how to sound out the word "NO". I have seen rescues take on too many horses....and they run into money troubles, the horses suffer for it....and then the rescue needs to be rescued. Sad...intentions start out well and then get overwhelmed and underfunded. I do encourage you to check out rescues that you support ...personally or by someone you trust.....or ask your vet. Rescues will never mind a visitor and especially a volunteer. There is never a shortage of work to be done, all horses need attention, manure needs picked up.....boards need needs sharing. You will probably not walk into the Taj Mahal......but you should be walking into well fed horses, clean stalls, clean water supply, safe fencing, not over crowded facilities. We have the summer we look more like the part we want to be...but right now, we face mud, like many of the rest of you in Washington.....we manage and we do not leave horses standing in mud...all have dry stalls/short paddocks with solid footing. My volunteers and myself take good care of them, they are well loved.........while they are here, they are OUR horses. Many come to us with broken spirits, broken bones, starved bodies.....a far cry from the showhorse they may have once been.......the pride stripped naked from them until just their mortal humble soul shows.....and we take them in and do what we some cases we love them until we can only give them a final the best cases we send them off to be loved by someone who has chosen to adopt them... adopted with known limitation or adopted to become a showhorse all works.

Enough of my rambling this morning.....

We are still trying to put together funds for Cooper's training, we need a sponsor for a horse who needs to go to permanent retirement (300 a month)and we still have a wish list for the farm.......we always appreciate help it monetary or items.
We will be holding a tack sale in May, perhaps in conjunction with a local horse show....if you have items to donate......we would love to have them or come by and purchase something!

Enjoy your slightly sunny day!

Pony Up fortune for today:

Do not look at the grass below your feet, look instead to the horizon.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

whoa it's Wednesday

Beautiful morning so far......a little wind, but the sun is out, filtering through the trees......I let Georgia and Boyd out to play early this morning and they are just plain tuckered out.....both sound asleep...gentley snoring.......the cat is on his condo, enjoying the sun coming through the window and I am writing lists, answering email and of course drinking coffee...laughing at some of the facebook posts.....generally glad we don't have snow like Jen does! sorry Jen!

Thank you to Sarah for holding know the more time you spend with her, the more you like her! There is a method to my madness.

Pony Up will be volunteering at the May Flowers dressage show (Lower Puget Sound Dressage Club)......if you want to volunteer on our behalf.......let us know? I am gatekeeping in the afternoon. LPSDC has been very supportive of Pony Up and it is a small way to pay them back and keep our name in front of other horse folks! If you can't volunteer, come and watch.......

Thank you to Rebecca, Brenda and Caryn for feeding faithfully.......two of my favorite girls! I couldn't do it without you.

Good luck to Ryan this week on his state test! We have our hooves crossed! You will do great!

Anyone have a live trap? We need to catch our barn cat and give him/her the once over...and perhaps a neuter job...I think it is a boy. He sustained some type of injury in the last two weeks and of course, I cannot get close to him nor even see him for more than a few seconds.

Off to the races........

Pony UP fortune for today........

Today will bring you a pleasant surprise.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Just plain Tuesday

I got to sleep late this morning,...the rain has finally stopped, it is windy and the sun is peeking out just a little (for a minute or two) as I write this. Quiet house, dog toenails click the tile floor......the cat is playing with a plant many sounds if you just listen..the quiet is not really quiet.

The shoer comes today to do Lizzie's feet, Sarah is coming to hold her and keep her from nipping the new shoer.......the nipping just came out of no where, like a mouthy youngster. Annoying...yes, sometimes they are annoying.

Yesterday, I arrived at the barn and Winston's 3/4 blanket is now 1/2 a blanket and it is on upside down. He says he doesn't know how it happened. There definitely is no repairing it now. I took it off and he had to borrow one that was a little too small.......he is a big boy in an 86 blanket and an 84 is a little snug but adequate to keep him warm.

Chores and errands to do.....going to lunch with an old friend...looking forward to it. Feed store and Fred Meyer.......have to make a plan to enlarge the chicken coop.......we have 15 a whole new flock and so we need some room.
We also need to cement our aisleways in the barn.....rats have made our mats uneven....our tame rats who will run right across your foot if you don't scream. We hate to poison things.

The resident squirrels are making a nest in our washrack stall......I don't have the heart to move them. They are quite tame...yesterday I took them a bag of shelled walnuts and they had a grand time "squirrelling them away".

A note to Sammi.........God bless you and keep you angel girl.......we all love you.

Well, I am off and running.......enjoy your day......

Pony Up fortune for today:

It isn't like you didn't know it.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Salutations Sunday

Slept in.....let dogs out, made email........home by myself for the second week in a row...soon to be third. The house is TV, no radio.....just me and the dogs. I throw sweats on, my glasses and off to the barn. It is cold, but not raining, although it looks like it could rain any time and I believe it will rain before the day is over.

I get to the barn, greeted by whinnies and braying.....let the chickens out, let the cat out, count chicks and then throw hay. Something catches my eye about Winston....oh.....half of his blanket is hanging, ripped from the front of his chest to the middle of his tummy....he is non plus about big deal....I get scissors and cut it off, so now he has 3/4's of a blanket. There will be no repairing this. Almost the end of blanket season.

My mother comes outside and tells me the donkeys escaped last night. HOW? Apparently they opened the latch on the gate......they were on her deck, ate her plants, went through her garbage and chewed on her car. They also scattered two bales of hay in their little barn. I have tied the gate shut until further notice. Anyone want two cute donkeys?

We had two people come and look at horses for adoption yesterday......they looked at Max, Lizzie and Cooper. Cooper is not quite ready for adoption until we have him assessed under saddle. I won't send any unknowns to adoptive homes until we know how they act and if we have any issues...not fair to the horse or the new home.
Anyway, one person wants to have Max come and visit, see how he is in the arena. She would be a very good home and does just the sort of riding he needs. We are keeping our fingers crossed! Cooper will go to the Jones Farm next weekend for a couple of weeks. Lizzie was a bad girl yesterday and has learned to more hand treats.

Temporary interruption by a Bull Terrier gone bad. I was wondering what the noise was and it is Georgia..........who has a couch pillow, de-stuffed.......and very happy with the results. If you ever had a Bull Terrier, you know what I mean. I took the pillow and then she took the remote control...........I took the remote control and she took the baby gift from the counter......I give her an appropriate toy and take the baby gift. She doesn't want the toy....she thinks the baby gift is better.
I offer her another toy and she goes back for a couch pillow. OY VAY.

The weather yesterday was so nasty that we did not do much in the way of chores. We spread hogsfuel in my mother's yard for the donkeys. Again, thank God for the tractor....and Ryan.

We checked on Yukon yesterday. He is happy and being well cared for. We dropped grain, beetpulp and a wormer for him. He is fat. :)

A few chores to do today, some friends to visit and the regular routine for the horses......the weekend went by quickly...never enough time it seems.

Enjoy your week......

Pony UP fortune for tomorrow:

You really should explain.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Free Form Friday

10:00 and all is well. I am sitting here listening to the rain, drinking coffee......the house is quiet except for the distant snoring of a sleeping dog. I have to go to work today and so my chores at the barn are done. I love a quiet can hear the softest creak of the floor, every thump from a cat jumping off the counter, the sound of running water in the gutters, croaking frogs from my pond.......such a chorus...comforting quiet sounds.

I gave up my plan to supplement the big horses with local hay. Why? because it doesn't make good bedding in my opinion, but it does in their opinion...Beaver is eating it nicely, Louie is eating whatever he gets because he is always SO hungry...but the rest of them say "No, we are NOT eating it" and "we cannot be forced"..."we will simply starve and folks will turn you into the Humane Society" I caved in. No more local ...just fresh expensive timothy/alf mix. It keeps them fat, the way they like.

The mud is seriously depressing. No matter how much we try to avoid is there because we have hooved animals and a rainy climate. More land would maybe the five acres behind us or to the side of us......I will have to get a second job or win the lotto. I will feel better once summer is here and we have dust and flies to complain about. Right now, summer seems a long way off, doesn't it?

Pony Up will have a couple of adoption days at local barns in the next two months. We will serve refreshments and show off our adoptables! Lizzie and Max are both rideable and beautiful......waiting for the right person!
We will also be taking Cooper to the Jones Farm for a couple of weeks of evaluation to see what he knows and how his tolerance is.. Cooper is a lovely boy to handle, much like a large labrador.....he loves to be scratched and will gladly groom you back if you let him...(we don't!) Max will go to Beth Anderson for a few weeks of legging up and then he is ready to go for the season. All of them are lovely.
We have one lone pasture pet........Blue......he is not suitable for riding and needs to be just a pasture ornament. His back is swayed, he has bad hocks......but he has a good disposition and is an easy keeper........he would look great amongst a backdrop of cattle.....or sheep....or ducks?

This weekend we will enlarge the donkey paddock....they have been in my mom's front yard (where SHE wanted them....!) and now they have annilated any landscape (like I said they would) they need a bigger space. She has been doting on them and they are happy little guys!...but busy, definitely busy! Also very adoptable...if you need more pasture ornaments or guard donkeys!...but they must have adequate housing and pasture space...they don't put up with any interlopers either....dogs must stay out of their yard!

Off to do other chores.......get ready for work...make more lists.

Thanks for all the support and friendship....we cannot do it without you!

Pony Up fortune for today:

It's not who wins the is who wins the war.