Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Blizzard - Glorious Day - More Snow

The blizzard was all it was predicted to be.  We had about 10" of snow, 50 mph winds and bitter temperatures.  We all hunkered down and did just fine.  The day after the blizzard was glorious, so out came the camera.  The header photo was taken from Paj's run. 

the ranch south of us

The wind left us with the usual bare spots and drifts.
Drift with Ben and Boomer in the background.

I tried to get some art shots like
to show you how thick the hoar frost was,
but alas,
I'm not Jim.

After our glorious day yesterday, we are having a gloomy, snowy day today.
But maybe this weather will save our pastures.
And maybe we won't have to worry about wildfires as much.
And maybe hay prices will come down.
So stick around, snow.
We can take it.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Visitors in the Storm

It's official.  We're having a blizzard.  You know the snow scene in The Nutcracker where the snow starts flitting down and builds until it's just dumping?  That's the stage we're at - the snow is just dumping down by the bucket load.  The horses are snug in their stalls, happily munching on extra rations. 

Mickey is enjoying a rare break.
It's tough being a ranch dog.

I'm having a break too.
I'm staring out the window, watching the birds.
It's the usual gathering -

mostly goldfinches and house finches,

a cold junco or two,

and somebody new!
It's a pair of pine grosbeaks!
That's the male at the top center of the feeder,
and the female is at the bottom.
The other little birds are goldfinches in their winter plumage.
I've never seen pine grosbeaks at the ranch before.
Now that they've found us, I hope they stick around.
And bring friends.

Friday, February 22, 2013


We didn't get quite as much snow as it looks like.  I was standing down hill when I took this photo.  The weather service says we got 6.3".  With our rolling terrain and high winds, we have some bare spots, some deep drifts, and everything in between.

The Clydes waited patiently for turnout.

Others, not so much.
At age 20, Reggie is still
The Bad Boy.



It's not as bad as it looks.
Reggie really loves Paj, and he always pulls his punches.

All of the horses have been turned out, and peace reigns.

We have a warm up tomorrow, and more snow Sunday.
David hitched the plow before the storm,
and it's going to stay hitched awhile longer!

The last photo was taken with my new camera.    I'm starting to get the hang of it, and it takes better photos, but I don't want to take it out in the snow just yet.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Outstanding in their Field, so to speak

After a nice warm up, we've had a bit of a cold snap.

The boys are out catching some rays and "grazing".

There is nothing out here to graze on!

Paj, honey, what are you eating?

"nom nom nom"

Reggie?  Have you found any grass?
"Bite me"

Ben and Boomer, are you finding some grass?
"Did you hear something, Ben?"

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Big Bad Wolf?

Here's Ole Roy.

I took this photo out our bedroom window.

Yep, we like Ole Roy and all his coyote friends.  They're part of our ranch and they keep the mouse population down.  Do we trust him?  Nope, not one little bit.  Our cats are house cats, and we keep Mickey by our side at all times.

We are expecting a few inches of snow and high winds tonight, but it shouldn't be a bad storm.  I'm thinking of all our east coast friends and hoping all are safe and warm.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

While I was Away...

In addition to doing the daily barn chores, David and Rey cleaned the barn from top to bottom.  They cleaned the rafters, washed the windows, spread more pea gravel in the runs and picked up every pile in the pastures and the paddock.  I should go away more often!

It wasn't all work and no play; they had fun exercising Boomer, and Mickey had fun being one of the guys.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Nope, Not Napa!

Fundy Blue was close.  Dreaming nailed it.  I was in Asheville, North Carolina, visiting my brother Tom and sister-in-law Pat.  The photos in the previous post were taken overlooking Biltmore Vineyard.  Asheville has several vineyards and a booming beer business.  Who knew?

It was a sentimental journey.  My Mom passed away in 2004.  The day after Mom's funeral, I took her cat Callie home to Colorado as carry-on luggage.  Callie never made a sound on the long trip, not even as she bounced against my side as I ran through the Atlanta airport to make our connection.  In the days, weeks, months, years that followed, we comforted each other.  Callie passed away in November after a long illness.  I didn't share it on my blog.  It felt like the last tie to my mother was cut.  I just quietly moved her photo on my sidebar to the "Sadly Missed" column.  I wanted to return her ashes to Mom, so that's what I did.  Neighbor Chuck had a big show in Scottsdale, and our friend/horse sitter Rey stayed at his ranch.  This gave me the perfect time to make my trip - Rey would give Dave a hand in the barn while I was away.

Tom drove Pat and me to the little town in the very western corner of North Carolina where our parents retired.  We visited their grave, and I scattered Callie's ashes.  Next we drove past their home.  It lifted our spirits to see their beloved home looking well cared for.

The rest of the trip was filled with good food and great company.  We hit the galleries in Asheville so I could see Tom and Pat's work.  That was a thrill for me.  The Folk Art Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway is a beautiful place, inside and out.  No photography is allowed inside, so the photos are from the Southern Highland Guild website.

Thank you so much, Tom and Pat, for taking such good care of me.  Thank you so much, Dave and Rey, for taking such good care of the ranch.  I came home to a ship-shape barn and home, with horses, dog Mickey, kitties and fish flourishing.  Yay.