Everyone has been challenged by the extreme cold we’re experiencing including our special animals. Our pup Lindy B has required having my homemade booties on to go outside (and it takes a while to get those on and off!) I’m also feeding the birds multiple times a day.
I’m lucky to report that I have a fun caregiver gig for some bunnies and chickens this next week. Today I received my care instructions and todo list.
With the polar vortex still hanging on this was day three for Mara to be in her stall 24/7. All the stall horses are handling it well but I decided Mara B needed to go outside for a while today. My mind can go low, plus I’m very claustrophobic and I was thinking, I have such a strong need to be “out” to breathe fresh air, to physically move and to see the sun, that I felt I had to give Mara the same.
It worked out well, she rolled in the snow, trotted freely around and had a different view for thirty minutes or so. At least it made me feel better, this ‘shutdown’ has reinforced my own understanding of how much I need nature, plus my animal connections to cope when I feel closed in. Hoping you managed to find your own healthy way through the polar vortex of 2019.
Tomorrow we get to turn the calendar to February and a new month together. ☀️💛 ✌️
Mara B and the stall horses stayed in all day today, due to extremely cold temperatures. Mara B. is a real outside kind of horse so this is no treat for her.
I let her have ‘free’ time in the indoor arena this morning and she was wild. Mara really needed to move.
The Icelandic horses also had arena ‘free’ time.
Very fun to watch our horses play indoors where it was warm and safe on a day the weather outside got the best of us. (just for documentation purposes, it is -15 as I post this and the polar vortex descends on the region tonight.)
Hardy horses, hardy women and special horse love on display today, and that warms us all up!
Brrrr, frigid, or freezing however you say it, it’s cold. This afternoon it was around zero when I arrived and all the stable horses had plenty of hay to munch on which helps to keep them warm.
My three, four legged friends and I had arena play time together before I groomed and cleaned Mara.
Wanting to have a little ‘ride’ time I sat bareback on Mara B and that was good bonding, chatting time for us.
All of the lights on in the barn help some to keep the temps up, but you can see from this inside door that the bitter temperatures are tough to deal with.
Of course Mara B warmed my heart and she’s so hardy, that she didn’t complain at all about the cold today. It was a pleasant visit for me.
Light snow had dusted Mara when I arrived this afternoon and it was actually very helpful for cleaning her up a bit.
Mara B had her “snow bath” however I guess some other horse used the wash stall for a clean up!
With our very cold temperatures using the wash stall was not the best idea….. Mara also had a very friendly (with Brutus and Bo) farrier appointment with Brian for a trim today.
Small accomplishments for us on another cold winter day.
Mara B and I are in a deep freeze in Western Wisconsin, so our activities have been limited. Today we enjoyed the warmth of pup Bo hanging out with us.
Mara enjoyed some run around time in the indoor arena, and Bo played along too but was distracted when finding road apples to chew on.
JAC the cat (aka Socks) and Bo and I chatted while Mara nibbled on some hay. When she returned to her paddock she took a long icy cold drink.
Dog, cat and horse we’re my wonderful ‘warm’ companions on this bitter cold day.
Mara was pleased to see Jay this afternoon.
Then we met up with Suzy Q, Mara’s fancy Paint lookalike in the indoor arena. Greg and Suzy Q were very pleasant, however Mara did not win Miss Congeniality.
Mara did however enjoy her Saturday grooming, nibble and warmup time with us and we did enjoy her. Because we love her so.
Mara B and I had a fun and full morning together, first activity was watching the dragging/leveling/grooming work in the outdoor arena (the indoor arena was also dragged.) Some good seasonal stable maintenance getting done.
Summer allows some of the college gals to be around during the day, so Haley and Mackenzie joined in on today’s ride! It was fun to chat with them.
Plus we had darling young friends at the barn today, we met up with Annika when we all happened to stop by to visit Barbie and her Colt.
The youngest riders added a special sweet charm to our stable time!
More special care for Mara B today! To reduce the hives, she is on a powder Benadryl type medication for a few days. I give it to her mixed with applesauce via syringe right down her throat, since she would not eat it on grain.
Mara had outdoor arena exercise time and she liked saying hi to her former paddock mates. Looking closely you can still see a few raised hives on her rump.
But it’s the biting flies and insects we hope to reduce or eliminate now with the fly boots she is wearing. We want to limit her stomping to keep flies away, because stomping at flies damages horses hooves, and with horses wearing shoes it’s a more common practice for them to wear fly boots. Hopefully they will be comfortable as well as beneficial and she’ll keep them on.
Mara and I were pleased to meet up with Nena and Nyles and Alanna and Allegro for a great ride to the Kinnickinnic (Kinni for short) River this afternoon.
The horses were awesome, they each enjoyed playing in the water and Alanna had us even walking up stream! Which was a fun new first for Mara B and me.
A good start to a summer of riding.
Maura G greatly assisted me with a very busy and focused saddle search yesterday. We found a used saddle online, picked it up, tried it out, and really liked it, so I purchased it to be Mara Bs new saddle! Fortunately many factors all came together, so today Mara B and I had our first ride in it.
Saddle fit is critical and an art I have learned, it must fit both horse and rider. I had naively been “clothes pinning” or pinching her withers with the other saddle I was using ☹️ Mara is moving out so much more comfortably now. So after our warmup in the outdoor arena we headed out around the stable grounds and to the lower cow pasture.
This gorgeous flowering tree was our additional extra special treat to enjoy along with our new saddle comfort!