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Posts Tagged ‘horses’

In a quiet moment I was looking around the house.

I noticed a pattern. Do you see it too?

Viola's Horse Pic

Equine-Canine Friendship

Puppy Wall Dishes

Puppy Wall

Us 3 Tigers

Tiger Trio

Jess' Rat

Unidentified Object Made By Granddaughter Jess in Her Earlier Years

Collie Pic

Collie and Friend

Unbronzed Horse

Prancing Horse

Pepper Plaque

Scottie Dog

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horse-head-49642_640This morning featured a unique Neighborhood Breakfast.

I am not a morning person. Maybe closer to a bear.

I used to get up early to fix bacon and eggs  for Bill, but he was always too sick to eat!  Then he found out  it was me who made him sick and he has made his own breakfast ever since.

Nevertheless, at 8:30 this morning I managed to stagger into the Hunt Lodge where our neighbors were meeting other neighbors, and all with widely divergent interests.  The breakfast was to spread good will and I guess they had no idea about grouchy morning people.

But this is the story of a Buffet Breakfast designed to bring even me around to discovering the joy of connecting in an equestrian community.

Bill and I live in  the middle of a 700 acre tract designed for traditional fox hunting.  The scenery is spectacular and we have always loved  seeing the riders in their pinques (scarlet jackets) and the thrill of seeing them “ride to the hounds.”

They say they never actually catch a fox and I fervently hope that is true, but I diverse.

One of our fellow property owners is a Fox Hunting Club.

As you might expect, the Club’s main interest  is “horsey” and although many of the Hunt people once owned parcels and lived on the land, the Club Members  no longer do live here but now come to ride from far and wide.

The “other Land Owners”  are like Bill and me.  We own a parcel of land we live on and that is partially accessible to the Fox Hunting Club.  

We, the “other” Land Owners, are the people who love horses but  don’t ride in the Hunt.

We oftentimes feel vulnerable to the Club’s hounds, horses and riders who traverse our land.

And we tend to worry about liability.

Over the decades since our equestrian haven was conceived, the Hunt Club and  the other Hunt Landowners  have drifted apart and do not always agree on the use and care of the land or even the roles of each entity.

Enter two dedicated fellows with peace and harmony in mind. One is from the Fox Hunting Club and one from The “Other” Landowners, and these two peacemakers decided to host a Neighborhood Breakfast!

Cook & Dishwasher

They planned the event right down to name tags and provided all the food and drink.  There were home baked scones and biscuits, West Virginia sausage, ham and eggs, beautiful fruits, mimosas and all the coffee we could drink.

Maybe  people were motivated by the yearning for good will, and  maybe they were mellow from all the goodies, but soon there were folks chatting  away and getting to know each other better.

We talked about horses of course.  We used to have two of our own.  

We talked about the way things used to be,

the people we knew who were such assets to the Club and to all who live here,

the beauty of the grounds, the fun and camaraderie.

We talked about “the way we were.”

And the Neighborhood Breakfast Buffet was a big success!

Kudos to Pete and Hugh who hatched this ice-breaking outreach event, and to those of us who participated in spite of morning stupors.

I hope next time we will talk about ways to work together going forward and I hope next time the party will be in the late afternoon.

But, in spite of my bear-like morning persona, I must admit there is something to be said about sharing a lovely breakfast with good people.

Communication must surely be the way to overcome divergent interests so we can all live and let live and enjoy a beautiful world.

Amazing Egg Maker

Amazing Egg Maker

06TailRideJulyBrownJarvis2

Please Come Near (626x460)

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Dor and Bill at Black Forest Clockmaker

Dor and Bill at Black Forest Clockmaker

I expected to find the Black Forest would be black – or very dark and forbidding.

Instead it was Christmas tree perfect.  It is suspected the name came from the contrast of desiduous trees and their autumn-changing leaves against the darker evergreens.

Black Forest Strem 1

We went to the House of Black Forest Clocks.

There we had Cherry Cake and coffee. and this put us all in a good mood for wandering around intricately handmade cuckoo clocks and Christmas ornaments.

My brother and I both found cuckoo clocks in the land where our mother was born.

From the clock house we visited a Farm museum center to see an old German country home.

The house is the same today as when families and livestock lived there under one roof (for warmth of course and easy access).  The inside was very dark and the center of life was a tile stove (again designed for exuding optimal warmth).

The out buildings are all there too – a bake house or smoke house with a black ceiling from all the cooking, and a mill, all close by.

Old Architecture

Mill House

There were horses to greet us too, and one in particular who never met a stranger.

A German Horse

A German Horse

This German Horse loves visitors.

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Horse Hat Rack 1A

This is Photo Story #3 for the Five Photos, Five Stories challenge.  The rules are to post a photo a day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo.  It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph.  Oh yes,  and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.  Today I nominate Eliza Waters who once sent me a surprise gift.  Thank you again Eliza.

There is a strange tradition in my family.  We do not send gifts at expected times.  And we only send peculiar, laughter producing, or  perfect things calculated to insert the element of awe into our lives.

One of those awesome surprise gifts came yesterday.  It was in a giant box that weighed heavily and was filled with a whole lot of bubble wrap.

There is just no describing the heart-quickening excitement that comes from opening an unexpected mysterious package.

The return address was not familiar.  A secret admirer maybe?  One never loses hope even into extreme maturity.

We had not ordered anything, so I must say I was puzzled.  Could this be a mistaken delivery of gold bullion from Fort Knox?

Aha!  It is a Coat/Hat Rack – but not just any old hat rack.  And then I guessed who sent it.

This is another one of those delightfully unexpected, unconventional, perfect gifts from my brother and sister-in-law!

  • The four horses fit right in since we live in a rural area of Virginia devoted to equestrian activities.
  • The steeds are all looking back as if to say, “Happy Days are Here Again.”  That’s an old song.  Do you know it?
  •  We are a family of dedicated travelling companions and enjoy each others’ company, so the plaque symbolizes all of us together and “on the road again.”
  • There is only one fair person in our human group and there is only one fair horse in the hat rack.
  • The four horses and their “business ends” perfectly represent my fun-loving brother who is famous for taking pictures of the back sides of all varieties of living things.
  • And in the end  (pun intended), this perfect gift is a happy reminder of love and the importance of family.

There is something to be said for giving unconventional gifts at non-traditional times of the year.

Thank you Steve and Viv!  I am not disappointed (well, maybe sort of) there were no gold bars in this package and Bill and I both love the hat rack!

And we can’t wait to see you both again as we ride fly off together into the sunset.

 

Notes:

Although I was born long after 1932, I do know that the song, “Happy Days Are Here Again” was Franklin Roosevelt’s selection for a campaign song that debuted during the 1932 Democratic Convention.  He was the first President to choose a pre-existing song for a campaign and it became the Democratic Party unofficial theme song for years to come.  

“On the Road Again” is a song made famous by country music  singer Willie Nelson and was one of his most recognizable tunes.

For some reason, I am into quoting old songs for blog posts.  

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Babe n Pete

Babe is “in the pink” halter. Pete’s is green.

 

This morning I went strolling around the little town of Lexington, Virginia and was pleasantly surprised to meet up with Pete and Babe.

They were getting a bath!

Normally I would not wish to intrude upon such a private activity, but horses are always irresistible and they did not seem to mind.

These two are part of The Lexington Carriage Company who carry tourists around town and offer their services for weddings and other splendid events.

Hay Pete - Are you o.k. with this Bath thing?

Hay Pete – Are you o.k. with this Bath thing?

From their website:

 The Lexington Carriage Company offers an intriguing way to explore the rich history of this 19th century college town, slowed to the pace and rhythm of hoof-beats.   During this fully narrated tour, your horse-drawn carriage will take you past many historic places of interest including:

  • The Stonewall Jackson House
  • Lee Chapel
  • Washington and Lee University
  • Virginia Military Institute
  • The Lee house 
  • Historic residential district dating from the 1820’s to the 1880’s
  • Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery and Jackson’s Tomb 

Next time you are in my “neck o the woods” be sure to pay a visit to Pete and Babe, and let them take you for a ride!

Lexington Carriage Co

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City folks often ask if I get bored living out here in “no-man’s” land.  Little do they know the pressures, pleasures and sweet surprises inherent in country life! We are not all relegated to the kitchen baking pies and putting up jars of things.  Some of us crochet!  And some of us meet fascinating people!

Here it is!  The finished crochet project!

D's Market Bag Flat

Dor's Market Bag

It looks like a bag.  It holds things.  It must be a bag. Actually it is a bag!  It’s a “Market Bag” that might get saggy-er with veggies and fruits inside.   That’s why the photo is of the empty bag.

It’s pretty saggy empty but I like it because it is the first crochet project I have ever done that is not a scarf.

After completing the market bag I did start another project – a shawl.  I failed miserably, ripped it out and made a SCARF!   It’s really light because it’s holy (having lots of holes). It has no warmth of course, but I like it anyway because it is well, airy.

Hopefully the crochet teachers, Ellie and Dymph, who had such high hopes for a beginner’s progress to  an intermediate level will not be too disappointed.

Lex Carriage

Dianna and MotorMan are in the back seat!

I met another blogger friend in person! 

Dianna of These Days of Mine, and her MotorMan, came for a surprise visit yesterday!  We met at the Lexington Carriage Company loading zone.  That means they were unloaded from a sweet carriage drawn by two sweet horses. This was a fitting beginning since Dianna loves horses.   Bill and I waited for them in a gazebo at a downtown herb garden.

Dianna and MM are really nice!  They are not axe murderers or anything like C and M, some other scary bloggers I met.  Seriously we are all now great friends and C’s wonderful blog is called Photos from the Loony Bin!  Anyway, we went with Dianna and MM to lunch at the Sheridan Livery Inn, which used to be a parking lot for stabling horses.  Really.   That was before cars and no parking zones of course. I think I might remember those days.

We stopped to mosey around Stonewall Jackson’s back yard.  He had this garden which now features antique vegetables and plants.  Stonewall, whose real name was Thomas Johnathan Jackson was a quirky Confederate general in the Civil War.

Dianna's Crochet Treasure

Dianna Finding Antique Treasures No, Dor Did Not Crochet This Beautiful Piece

And then we went to two big antique malls!Duke's Antiques

I tend to go blank when there are too many options, but Dianna is an antique expert and has great ideas for converting seemingly useless objects into arty decorating accents.  I am so envious.

I loved meeting Dianna and MotorMan in person!   Who’s next?

Other random events of the week included a book club discussion of Yes, Chef, by Marcus Samuelsson, a cooking class I walked out on since I had to cook, and a mad effort to stay away from bread, crackers, and sweets.

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Home Fires Burning 2This week came and went – fast!

How can that be with nothing exciting happening?

New Year’s Eve

Bill and I were supposed to go to our friends’ home for nibbles before heading out to dinner.  Plans changed since our friends had to put down one of their favorite horses they described as  “a good girl.”  They were in no mood to host so we did the honors.

We watched a possum exploring our deck and that drew some laughter.  Dinner was fine.  And we managed to stay awake for champagne to welcome in the New Year.  It was an evening of mixed emotions; the sadness that comes with loss and the joy that comes with hope.

 

 

This Wednesday night was bitter cold.  

We lit the wood stove to give the generator a little rest and it was truly cozy inside

while we listened to the wind howl and the temps dropped to 5 degrees Farenheit.

The wild birds have finally arrived at our feeder!  I am so glad to see them.  This morning a big red headed woodpecker actually swooped in and out, along with a female cardinal, and a bunch of little finches.  It is still in the teens today.

Maybe people like to flock too.

Plans are also in the making for a Neighborhood Pot Luck Party.

Somehow my friend Phebe and I get involved in the invitations and organization, and another of our neighbors, Anne,  hosts the party.  So I have been on the telephone and emailing folks to help pull the whole thing together.

Here it is a week since New Year’s Eve and tomorrow our son is coming all the way from California with our three grandgirls.  That should be fun since nowadays it is getting harder and harder to get everyone together at the same time.

ORGANIZE!

What is it about the first week of a new year that inspires a huge urge to organize home and hearth?   I’m into that too – organizing.

Starting with one little desk file drawer, I spent this morning reducing paper.  Well, at least I concentrated on that one file,  so full I can hardly pull it up without four other files coming along with it.

Then I realized I am behind (way behind) on blog posts too.

This week went by so fast.

How can this be when nothing exciting is happening?

 

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Beautiful Rosa 2

Rosa is a most beautiful golden horse (a Palomino) who lives nearby.

I pass her paddock on my way to town.

“Stop to say hello,” she would always seem to say and I would make that stop.

We connected.

And I somehow knew she loved our visits.

“Hellio beautiful Rosa,” I would say.  “You are so sweet and so good and I love you.”

And then I would be smiling and on my way..

But one day Rosa was gone, and the next and the next.

It was so disappointing to drive by her empty pasture.

I missed Rosa and our odd communications.

At first I thought our neighbors sold her but when I inquired they said, “No, Rosa is lame.  We are trying to help her with vet care and hoping for the best.”

And Rosa was gone for many more weeks until I had almost given up hope of ever seeing her again.

Beautiful Rosa

But now Rosa is back!  And just in time for the holidays.

She seems to favor her left back leg and stands with it semi-bent as if to lighten the load.

But my hope is that she is mending.  It is the season for miracles after all.

How I love stopping for human conversation with a horse who is so skilled at silent communication.

Her eyes say it all.

And I think she knows that in my eyes, she is truly beautiful.

pal·o·mi·no
[pal-uhmee-noh]
NOUN [PLURAL PAL·O·MI·NOS.]
a horse with a golden coat, a white mane and tail,
and often white markings on the face and legs,
developed chiefly in the southwestern U.S.
Source: Dictionary.com

 

 

 

 

 

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Shenandoah Sunrise 011

It’s a horse of course, busy dining,

but still able to give me that wandering suspicious eye.  

I don’t know her name but she has a twin companion named Pam.

I know this isn’t Pam because she is sporting a muzzle like contraption

to keep her from overeating, which can result in what

horse people call “foundering.”  And that is not a good thing.

The twins live 

down yonder

from my Virginia country “estate!”

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Shadow Horse n Buggy Team

Beauty

A Week of Random Ramblings

One night Bill and I went to see Wuthering Heights performed at our local university theater of the arts.  Occasionally we get out at night like that.  I should have taken “night” pictures but forgot in the excitement over seeing city lights and other real people.

B w Kendall 9-24-14 B'dayGirl for  Lunch

They have Cream Cheese Jalapeno Burgers here!

On Wednesday we drove to Harrisonburg to take our grandgirl out for lunch and a stop at Costco!  At her suggestion, we dined at Jack’s local hamburger joint where oddly enough, that’s all Jack served – hamburgers.

Bill ordered a plain one in spite of a wide variety of options including a “Peanut Butter Burger!”  And  Kendall and I got Cream Cheese and Jalapeno Jelly Burgers!  Costco is always fun too but seems Enormous to us country bumpkins.

Thursday was dedicated to Getting-Ready-for-Winter.

At our house that means moving out summer clothes and moving in winter.   Somehow sandals don’t work well anymore in these cooler Fall temps.  But I am loathe to store away the new sparkly ones that make my feet look 17 years old.  The object today was to accommodate cooler weather, but the object remained elusive and the sandals still sparkle in the closet.

I did manage to go Monday and Friday to the gym!  And now increasing “footage” (walking), though nowhere near goal.  Today, due to the energy giving qualities of a new vitamin, and the usual self imposed mental delusion  that I am an energetic 17 year old, I set out in earnest.  Never made it to the gym, but…..

Hoping to find apples, there was a farmer’s market at the Virginia Horse Center.  No apples, but lots of honey!  Honey is my next recommendation for hoarding.  And as long as I was there, I did a little walking around the horse center and watched young people jumping things and a very graceful horse and buggy team.  Lovely!

Beautiful Horse and Rider 1

 

I have determined that walking is a good thing.  You never know what you will stumble on.

Late as usual but this was a week of random ramblings gone by and it was a good week after all.

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