Sunday, August 11, 2013

Jaymes loves Halo

We've had horses for years, and for years I've tried to get Jaymes interested. He never was until we got our Thoroughbred, Buddy, a few years ago. He loved Buddy, loved to ride him and mess with him. Buddy passed away though, and Jaymes was not at all interested in having anything to do with the new horses. Right up until recently, when Jaymes decided my mare, Halo, was his.

Now Halo is not like our pony, Rocket. She is energetic, a bit spooky and reactive. She keeps me on my toes when I'm on her back. She isn't a horse you could throw a beginner on and expect to do well.

When Halo is around Jaymes, however, she changes completely. She becomes the calmest, most tolerant, patient mare you've ever seen. She puts up with whatever he does to her. He loves to take her out and drag her around the back yard. She just follows along and walks in circles. She lets him tie ropes around her middle to strap his Silver Noctopus onto her back. She lets him poke and prod and pull her mane.

When Jaymes is on Halo's back, she takes tiny little steps and keeps her ears turned back toward him like she's keeping tabs on his safety. She is solid and trustworthy- nothing scares her or riles her up. Jason drove the lawmower past her the other day- with me she would have flipped out and spooked halfway across the yard. With Jaymes, she stood like a rock. She ignores him kicking her in the sides and just meanders along calmly. When he flails his arms around and squeals, she just stays steady and quiet. When I'm on her back and I throw an arm up suddenly, she spooks!

It's truly amazing to me how horses know they need to be careful when kids like Jaymes are on their backs. Their usual behavior goes out the window. Things that would normally bother them don't. Halo is a very special horse. She takes care of my kiddo, and she puts up with everything he does to her.

Here are some pics I took. I broke my helmet rule that particular day, only because we were only walking and we were in the closed in back yard. Normally my kids wear helmets. I know, horrible mom. But he suddenly wanted to get on her back and I ran before he changed his mind!

We started out brushing Halo... She fell asleep.

Then he moved on to dragging her across the yard...

Then Jaymes strapped up Silver Noctopus for a ride...

Then Jaymes wanted a turn. He enjoyed looking down on the world from his high horse.

Then Sierra got jealous, so she got out her pony and gave Ice Cream Bear a ride...

We are so blessed to have such wonderful animals, and awesome kiddos! We're having lots of horsey fun this summer!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Sometimes you just gotta wash a chicken...

It was miserably hot today, and the kids wanted to go outside. We went outside, briefly. Just long enough to think to myself, "hell no. Too hot." Then we went to collect eggs from the chicken coops, and I got a good look at how dirty my little Silkie ladies had become. I have not shown in awhile, so they have just been busy being chickens, and getting dirty. So I was alternating between not wanting to stay out because of the heat, and fussing about my dirty dirty chickens. Then it hit me- bath day!

We filled up a clean wheelbarrow full of soapy water, and I sent Sierra to go capture our first customer.

Then Jaymes decided he wanted to join in...

 We had to let the white hens marinate in soapy water awhile, they were all icky and yellow tinted...
 Then we got fancy, and did two at a time!

 My Splash hen's head dried quickly, and exploded into a huge fluffy 'fro...

 Gene Simmons, my free range Polish roo, came to investigate the pathetic wet Silkies... But they were so bedraggled, he could not tell they were hens, and wandered off.

All in all, a fun way to stay cool during a miserable summer day! Of course, within five minutes of finishing up, the sky opened up with a horrendous thunder storm. Good timing! This is the first time Jaymes has shown much interest in the chickens, so I was really excited to see him enjoying himself.