Sunday, February 28, 2010

b-day (sort of)

Well,for this year anyways... the last day of February will be as close as Sadie gets to her birthday. I tell her that she should celebrate it on the first day of March... but she says that her driver's licence states that it is the last day of February....

I know, confusing... but when your birthday comes just every four years... I guess you take what you get...and pick the day that you suits you best...

so, even though we don't have a February 29th this year... we still have to say....
Happy Birthday... Sadie Mae!!!!!!

be careful what you wish for...

I've been meaning to share this story for a couple of weeks now. I think it's rather funny and I know that some of you will appreciate it as well....
A few weeks back, a friend and fellow firefighter asked Ed if he could borrow our horse trailer. Seems he "had a couple of horses to move". Ed told him "yes" and then said that Robin would be coming for our trailer. I asked Ed who Robin was moving the horses for, and he said he didn't know.
Robin is a "handyman" if you will, so I assumed that he was just moving some horses for a client.. because I didn't think of Robin as "being a horse person".
About a week later, Robin asked again if he could take the trailer. We said "yes" again, and I told Ed that when he came to get the trailer, I was going to ask him "what was up". He arrived to get the trailer and brought his "better half" with him.. a nice gal named "Charlie"... "who's the horse person" I asked Charlie and she began to laugh...
"Well", she said.. "this horse thing actually started out as a punishment"... it seems that Charlie's young son (he's 11) got himself into trouble at school. Once Charlie went into the school and got the matter settled, she felt that some sort of punishment was due. She has a friend who is a horse trainer and has a small farm, and Charlie thought that maybe her son should go to the farm and work off some of his "bad behavior". So, he spent some time mucking stalls, hauling hay and the like. When the punishment was over... her son had decided that he liked this "farm work" and continued to help out, just because he wanted to. It wasn't long before he began to take riding lessons, and then last summer began to do some showing. It turned out that he is quite the little horseman and he did really well at the shows, almost always coming home with ribbons.
Now, as you can all imagine, he began to talk about "getting a horse of his own" and really learning to ride... and you have probably already figured out... that is why Robin needed our trailer.... to bring their horse home!!!!!
so.. what started out as a young man who needed "something in his life"... turns out that his punishment was just the thing... and like it or not (and they do like it)... Robin and Charlie have become "horse people!!!!"

Saturday, February 27, 2010

rain, wind, snow and b-day

This has been quite a week, weather wise. The first part of the week was warm(ish) with little bits of spring tucked inside. Mr. G was happy to find some nice dirt again, the slow melt of the snow had made for little mud on the farm, and even the lake is showing signs of melting. All but one little ice shack has been taken off the lake, and there is open water in front of the camp. It seemed as though spring was making a quiet entrance.

THEN.... we got hit with a good ol' fashion New England Nor'easter. The coast really got hit, with wind gusts up to 80 mph. We got some pretty good winds and rain here as well... Ed went out with the fire department around 10:30.. and 15 calls later, he got home around 2:30 am.

Despite it all, we were some of the lucky ones and the power has stayed on. Even tonite, though, many folks are still in the dark since last Thursday's storm. Parts of our town are out, but we're not. There are (were) trees down all over the place and because the storm was all rain, a fair amount of flooding in the roadways and the like. IF it had been snow.. we would have had close to five feet!!!! Needless to say, I am just as glad we didn't have all snow. The storm still isn't quite over, it keeps circling in from the ocean and we're suppose to have rain/snow from it until at least Monday.

Today, it turned back to snow... and this is what my ride into work looked like this morning. I am getting tired of the winter weather, but I have to admit... it really is very pretty.

Mr. G and chickens are hanging out in the barn once again... all their dirt is "gone". (I think he looks kind of sad about that)

And outside the barn, the wind howls again, and the snow comes back with force... hard to even see the other side of the field.

But... that didn't stop us from celebrating Sadie's birthday. We met up with Kas and Nate, Kelli and Rick at Olive Garden (Sadie's choice) to have a birthday supper together.

Kelli made another one of her amazing gift baskets for Sadie.. just full of all kinds of goodies.

And look at this adorable card she made, with all kinds of photo of Abbie. She is so talented!!!!

After dinner, we had the "staff" sing their happy birthday song and bring a small cake for Sadie.. Abbie was amazed.

And thought that the whole event was simply grand. (I can't wait to see what she thinks about her own birthday next fall!!!)
The snow had let up some for the ride home, and right now it's calm again. The power crews are working all over the place and I hope power is restored soon to the ones who are waiting.

and, Chester puppy... well he went to dinner tonite as well, and snoozed under the table while we ate. The only ones who even knew he was with us, were the folks that saw him walk in and out of the restaurant....

Thursday, February 25, 2010

house up date

We have had a little taste of spring around here!!! yahoo.... and Mr. G was pretty happy to find some nice dirt to roll around in... silly bird!!! The other two guinea hens are dying to get outside and join him, but I am hoping to keep them in on the chance that they might lay some eggs. I still think I have a hen and cockerel.. but only time will tell, and if so, I don't want a repeat of last spring when we "lost" Mrs. G and her whole nest...

Is this a stick up??? NO.. it's actually me
.. being a "good girl" and wearing a mask as I continue in the sanding of sheetrock. The mask has made a huge difference, the cough is nearly gone (just shows up when my voice gets tired.. like at the end of a night of dog classes)...and I do sense it more just walking into the house. We had set a goal of having all the sheetrocking/sanding done by the end of this month. It's ALMOST going to happen.. we are very close to being finished, but it won't quite be "done"....

the downstair bathroom has had the most attention this past week... I should be able to do the final sanding here tomorrow.. and then, it's onto primer paint.....

The front hallway is coming along right behind... it won't be too long before we'll be looking at finishing up the stairs... (railings and the like).... I need to be thinking of "what" color it's going to be....

This is our bedroom... by the end of next week, I think this room will also have a coat of primer paint on it....

But, the "good news" is the other two bedrooms are "done"... this front room will be Sadie's... she is looking at her "colors" now...

and this is the back bedroom.. which will be Abbie's room (I really like this bedroom... I think it's the best one in the house!!!) This room has the nicest view of the back woods and Garrish Mountain.. it gets great sun and is always so bright and cherry... just the perfect room for a little girl...

so, as we look at the end of February... that's where we stand in the "housework" right now... some days, I feel like we will never see the end of it, and other days I am amazed at how far we have come in a relatively short amount of time. One thing for SURE, when we are finally settled here, there won't be a day when i won't appreciate it.....

Monday, February 22, 2010

"planes" and puppies

We had quite an interesting weekend, and it just goes to show the wide variety of things that Ed and I are interested in. On Saturday morning, he had a training drill with his fire company on the "life flight helicopter". There was some talk of having the helicopter land in our field, because the fire department parking lot was so full of dirt from the winter.

But as it turned out, the dirt wasn't such a problem and they landed right in the parking lot of the FD. I didn't get to see it personally because I was at work, but I heard it fly over so I knew it was in town.

It's definitely one of those things that you hope you never have to meet in person, but we are so fortunate that we have this service so close by. Ed said they had a great drill and it was good for the guys to have the chance to see the helicopter and meet with the folks that are in charge of it.

On Sunday we had a "service dog day" with NEADS... and it was time to say goodbye to Chester's little puppy vest. I had maxed the straps out as far as we could and still it wasn't fitting anymore.

Time to move into a larger vest so our "poor boy" can breath while he does his work!!!

There was this little 10 week old lab puppy who attended (wish I could remember her name). It's so hard to think that Chester was just about that size when he arrived back in November. Our friends, Rick and Kelli popped over and brought their therapy dog Mindi to mingle with the group.,

And at this age, it doesn't take much to tucker them out!!!!

who says "service dogs" can't get some attention. Actually when they are truly working, you're not suppose to fuss with them, but at this stage of training, and the fact that it was an "information day"... all rules were laid aside. Is Chester a "muck" for attention or what.... silly golden....

We brought Camille with us as well. I tell everyone that she is a service dog supporter. Look who had to get in on the picture taking..... she demanded as much attention as the other dogs did!!!!

This is Kelly to the left and Chester on the right, (he looks much happier in his new and bigger vest!!) and he isn't that much smaller than Kelly!!

And a couple of nice photos of the group....

After that, Ed and I went over to check out Cabela's which was right next door. Quite a nice place and we brought Chester in to walk around with us. Then I went on and did a home visit for Cocker Rescue... back home to do barn chores and the day was over, another weekend gone. But great fun, a little break from the house and tomorrow it's back to routine.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

farm day

My daughter Kas works at a pre-school.. and last spring, I took Mocha down to see the children during their "farm week". It was great fun, and most of the kids enjoyed seeing Mocha.. however.. one little cutie fell absolutely in love with her. Over the summer I would pop in to see Kass.. sometimes, I had Tonka (our big guy) with me, if I had just finished a riding lesson or whatever... but, anytime that I showed up "Cutie" would come running and ask all about the horses!! She even told me that I was her "Grandma"....
"Cutie" had some changes going on in her life, and sadly, her behavior at school began to reflect that. So, Kas and the other teacher came up with the idea of a "good behavior chart" and Miss Cutie had to earn stickers to fill her chart up. When it was all full, she got to pick something special. The other kids at pre-school suggested things like an ice cream party, or a lunch out with the teacher... but Miss Cutie had her own ideas.. her reward would be a day at "her Grandma's farm with all the horses". Well.... last Monday that goal came true.. she had filled her whole chart and Kas.. good to her word... brought her up to the farm.

It was a bright sunny day, but COLD.. the wind was blowing and I wasn't sure how much time we would actually get to spend with the horses. "Cutie" wasn't going to let anything stop her, she never said one word about being cold and was more than happy to do anything that we suggested with the horses. I tried having her ride Mocha, but she is actually a little too big for her now.. so we hitched up the cart instead and took several trips up and down the drive way.

She was so thrilled, and chatted the whole time and just thoroughly enjoyed the ride!!! (Mocha was amazing and trotted along like nothing to it!!!)

Cutie helped with the tack and un-tacking... she was a bit unsure of all this stuff and asked all kinds of questions while we went along.

And then offered Mocha a little kiss and hug to say thank you for such a nice ride.

Then we pulled Tonka out (she calls him Tongo)... and she wanted to brush him and pet him. I offered to put her on him, but she was unsure about that once she remembered his size. So, she was pretty happy just to fuss over him. Course, I'm not sure who liked that better... Tonka or Miss Cutie.

she liked Duke too, but didn't want me to "take him out" and was perfectly happy petting him thru the stall....(don't you love how she stands on the block to reach???)

And, what's a trip to the farm without a ride in the gator. We buzzed that around the field and house and she thought it was just great. She wanted to drive it, but I thought better of that.

We all had lunch together, and then it was time for Kas to get her back to school and her family. So, one last walk about the barn, and she climbed into the car and said goodbye. Both Kas and I have promised her another day at the farm.. maybe int he spring when the weather is a bit warmer, but I don't think it would matter to her.. weather wise.
And I know she had a good day, but so did I.. I feel very humble to think that she wanted to spend her special day with us... and I hope it will be a lifelong memory for her, and I really hope she will come again and feel that she is welcomed anytime.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


When I am in "dog teaching mode" my life seems to be in six weeks block... and yes, we have finished yet another "six weeks". This is Chester's puppy class.. since I have been teaching it, Sadie has been working Chester for me.

We had a large variety of dogs in this class... and some different "breeds as well"... This is Forrest and Josie....

and here is Harley (who is one of Chester's best friends)

and this is Kasper (who is a pup that was bred by a "neighbor" of mine)

and of course, "our" boy --- sporting his graduation cap!!!!

Congratulations to one and all... now it's onto the level 2

OH.. and I just had to sneak in this great "family" photo of a very special student (Max) and his family!!!! I had the pleasure of having Max and his "sister" Sandy stay with me for a week while his "parents" were on vacation.... they graduated from Level 2 and will soon be heading to Canine Good Citizen!!!!

today is four.....

Here they are (already) Abbie's "four months" photos with her favorite little pal, Tatter. She (Abbie) is turning into a real little person!!! She has gone from that "fragile" baby to a "real" baby.. she smiles - almost laughs - turns her head to follow you, turns towards sounds, "babbles" all the time.. she is sleeping thru the night and Sadie has begun to give her a bit of rice cereal - which I think is helping with the "thru the night" thing.

She loves the dogs and TV!!!! and wants to always be sitting up.. she hates to lay flat. She can roll now, so you have to watch her if she is on the couch or in a chair.

She's a very "happy" baby and seldom has "meltdowns" though they do happen once in awhile.

and we are very blessed!!!!!