Friday, June 22, 2018

Home From China

Karin and mom will be pulling in around 10:00 pm but Karin sent a text as soon as they got in the states. They left Beijing at 5:00 pm on Friday night and arrived at the Detroit airport at 5:00 pm Friday night. Mom is exhausted from all that warp speed.  Karin said she slept 5-6 hours on the plane. Mom said she slept but doesn't know how much. Hopefully they have an uneventful last connection and can crash soon.
Right after the walk the mares were teased. Zalena is still in but I needed to move her out of the breeding shed into the paddock next to Evan's as I needed the breeding shed paddock for Star's colt. Thankfully Star is still in and showing. She was covered today by Valiant.  Rebecca and Javan arrived to visit Claire. Rosalie and Claire were taken to the outdoor arena. It was nice and cool today and both had a ball galloping around.

IF you would like to see the rest of her pictures taken today click HERE.  I had to run to Berean this morning to pick up Bibles studies for someone in Roanoke so went to Sam's first. I bought myself  a gift. Something I've wanted but would never spend the money on. Sam's had restaurant quality frying pans, HUGE ones for $26.00. I just couldn't resist. This will be packed in the camper for our Sceggel vacation in August. It will help so much to have a big pan when cooking for 23 people. I dropped off 5000 envelopes at Berean and got the studies then drove to Meisters to give them to Crystal to give to her mother who will give them to the lady in Roanoke.
This afternoon was spent doing laundry while listening to 2017 Roanoke VBS. I heard 4 of the 5 and highly recommend them. They are posted on AC Central. That is such an amazing resource. 
Mark got home early from work and graded the driveways while supper was cooking.
After supper we took the grader off the tractor and put on the mower. That sounds like such an easy thing to do but it isn't. It takes two of us and a lot of muscle. Mark mowed around the fields first then took it over to Joan's to mow the field by her garden. We had another good day. Tomorrow are the Hanna City garage sales which I hope to hit early then will take Rosalie and Claire back out to Middle Grove to join Ayanna and her colt now named Evan's Sir Lancelot by his owner.  I also got a name for Star's colt today from his owner. They want him registered as Ima Valiant Zephyr .

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Tornado Warning for Hanna City

Well mom did not get carried up to the top of the Great Wall of China, she made it all by herself with her trusty walking stick.  Karin on the other hand saw a man  trying to get his friend up in a wheel chair, walked over and lifted the front of the wheel chair getting it all the way up.  Once up they found someone to snap their picture of Karin's phone and Karin was able to text it to me.
This was on mom's bucket list that she can now scratch off as finished. They took a rickshaw ride to the Olympic park and a man walked up to Karin and asked her, "do you remember me?" Karin was confused and honestly could not remember where she had seen him. He replied, "you helped me get the wheel chair up to the top of the wall!" That was pretty embarrassing but to her benefit she was more concerned with getting the wheel chair to the top without dumping the rider.  They were taken back to the hotel around 4:00 pm. Tomorrow they leave for home. They must take a taxi from the hotel to the airport around noon. Their flight leaves Beijing at 5:00 pm and they fly into Detroit at 7:00 pm. That far and only two hours! They will get to Peoria around 10:00 pm Friday night.  
We had a hot morning for our walk and the chores here. The mares were teased and again the only mares showing are Star and Zalena. Star cannot be covered now until Friday as Valiant is needed for an outside mare this afternoon. Today was de-worming day for the mares here. Jenis, Sangria and Lily were all de-wormed with Quest Plus as non of them are pregnant.  Star, Rosalie, Madiera, Zalena and Roxanne were all give Strongid.  Rebecca and her husband arrived with a big blue ball to introduce to Rosalie and Claire. We took it over to Mike and Diane's to use their air compressor to fill it up.  I grabbed the camera on the way back. Rebecca already had Rosalie and Claire in the round pen and Rosalie was already in the process of rolling in the very very wet sand when I got there. We had over an inch of rain last night.
Rosalie was at first scared then curious. 

 Claire was afraid too at first. 
 Since Rosalie was accepting it, she got brave and touched it. 

 All was well until she accidentally bumped it and it went rolling. Claire took off but Rosalie followed it. 
If you would like to see the rest of the pictures with the big blue ball click HERE
I had to go in to Meister's today for work. On the way home the phone started going off with a tornado warning in Hanna City. Of course as soon as I got home instead of taking cover like the phone was saying I had to go out to the field to look for the tornado. The clouds were thick and for sure rotation. 
 Below the smaller cloud coming off the left hand side was rotating sideways. 
 I zoomed in for a better picture. 

I heard voices and saw the apartment guests were back so took the golf cart over to talk to them.  The kids were having a ball feeding grass to the horses. I took the man over to mom's to show him how to get into her basement if the weather got worse.  While we were outside talking the wind kicked up blowing cold air which was bringing in the lightning, thunder and rain.  I headed back to the house and watched the two geese families taking their goslings quickly to the pond. There are 2 pair each with 4 goslings.  
The rain was pouring down but this storm didn't last long only dropping about a 10th of an inch.  The owner of Duchess brought her over around 4:00 pm. Valiant kind of had a tough time with slipping in the mud but got the job done.  Zalena was teased and covered by Evan. Mark had to work late tonight getting home around 6:45 pm.  We are having an easy evening, no working outside tonight.  

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Forbidden City

Karin called this morning with an update on their Wednesday's adventures. It has rained two days before so Beijing's air seemed clean.  Their first stop was Tienanmen Square. Of course the massacre was not spoken off. 

From there they walked across the road to the Forbidden City. Which is called that because no commoners were allowed in.
The eunuchs and concubines were housed in the back of the city along with the Empress.  The emperor was never allowed to spend the night with his empress or any concubines as he was to have his mind on the state of the country. He was allowed to choose a concubine and either 1 or 2 hours to spend with her.  The  emperor was so afraid of someone coming in to assassinate him that if he wanted a concubine, the eunuchs would come to the lady, strip her naked, roll her in a rug and carry her to his palace, then unroll her, light the incense that would burn for the allotted time of either 1 or 2 hours then once the time was up, come back, roll her back up into the carpet and carry her back.  The eunuchs were very rich as the concubines would bribe them to choose her. Which ever wife OR concubine that would have the first son was then chosen as empress.
Another interesting fact was when the emperor knew he was going to die his favorite concubines were chosen to go with him to the afterlife. A eunuch would take her a white scarf and help her hang herself.  From their they visited the Summer Palace with it's massive garden.
This was a summer resort for royal family members. The Mongolians conquered the city and the summer palace was built to house the Mongolian emperor. He would spend 6 months a year in the city. They had a lot of walking and were pretty tired when they got back to the hotel. Karin and mom were running out of money by this time so Karin tried her special debit card, the one that would not charge them for taking money out any where in the world but the pin number was wrong. She tried another credit card but that wouldn't work. She walked down to the bank to try to get some money but didn't have her passport on her so they wouldn't give her any. She got back to the hotel and mom said, "too bad you can't call Diane, she could get you money and solved our problem"  When Diane heard this she thought, "wow I must be some kind of miracle worker, able to change money into yuan.!"  Karin was able to get on line and found out she could change the pin number on the card with no charges, did that and got YUAN, enough to order room service and enough for the next few days. Of course when Diane was talking to mom and Karin and hearing the story of no money for room service she ask "why didn't you just charge it to your room?"  Neither Karin or mom would have thought about that, we were always taught if you don't have the money don't buy it!
My day here on the farm started early.  Star is now showing big but can't be covered as an outside mare was coming in to for Valiant and Valiant is the stallion we want for Star.  Madiera was teased, she is now out. Zalena was teased and she was in and covered by Evan.  No sign of Lily, Sangria or Jenis showing.  Brook and Anna brought Duchess over around 11:00 am. According to their vet, she will be ready to ovulate on Thursday but when she was tied and Valiant brought over, she did not show at all and kicked out at him. Today they twitched her and he got the job done very quickly. She showed as he was mounting.  I thought all was well and I would be able to cover Star tomorrow except they called right back and told me their vet thinks we should cover her again tomorrow night. I sure hope Star will still be in on Friday but after checking her history I don't think she will.  After talking it over with Diane we decided starting next year we are charging $1200.00 for the stud fees for Valiant and Evan. Too many times we end up putting off breeding our own mares to satisfy a customer and it just isn't worth the time and effort at our current price.  Rebecca and her husband came this morning to visit Claire, Rosalie's filly.

Today went very well. Rebecca had Claire eating grain out of a bucket she was holding. Claire was haltered, then taken to the outdoor arena so she could see her movement. She didn't show off much but it was still terribly hot. She let them graze a bit then hosed both of them off. Claire even stood for fly spraying.  This filly is smart!
Mark had a late estimate so just took church clothes with him. After his last one he stopped at McDonalds got a snack and changed then went to church. Diane drove from here tonight taking Ruth and me.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Puppies Galore

Karin sent the picture below taken from their 13 floor of their hotel by text during our walk.
Yesterday morning they were taken to the Bullet Train station for the 5 hour trip to Beijing. They didn't have a very good window as their seat was by the emergency exit but Mom told Karin she wanted to have the window seat and at her age she got it. The landscape was a lot flatter than the last time they took the train. It was a pleasant ride and they were glad for the day of rest.
I only did one round then left for the Berean office. We had a good morning there getting everything done. If you would like to see the pictures click HERE.
When I got home from work Rhoda and Sarah were here with all 12 puppies. The puppies had a vet appointment today for their first set of shots and of course a check up. The puppies are all doing well and all of them are sold.
Zion had a lot of fun with the puppies.

If you would like to see the rest of the puppy pictures click HERE
This evening we had a storm come through that dropped about a quarter inch of rain but more important dropped the temperature from the 90s into the 70s.  Rosalie and Claire were brought in, Claire was reminded that she needed to stand quietly for haltering. She let me halter her, tie her and groom her a bit but is very sensitive up by her ears where we pulled the tick off. 

Monday, June 18, 2018

More China and Horse Update

Karin called this morning which was her Monday night to tell us about their Monday.  They visited the Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses.  The terra-cotta army, as it is known, is part of an elaborate mausoleum created to accompany the first emperor of China into the afterlife.

Emperor Qin not only had these thousands of warriors made and placed in his tomb along with horses 4 abreast puling chariots before he died, he also gave them real weapons. 
This was a work in progress and after he died the work was stopped so some of the warriors have no heads.  He also ordered his 9000 concubines be killed and placed in his grave with him and that's what they did. Many of these concubines had never even met Emperor Qin but were killed to satisfy him in his afterlife. The Huns discovered the tomb and stole many of the swords and other weapons but enough was left that the magnitude of the find was huge.  

From there mom and Karin were taken to the Xian Museum. This museum houses 130,000 pieces.  At this museum they learned how to write the word 'happy' in Chinese.  From there they visited the Small Wild Goose Pagoda. This is one of the two most significant Buddhist pagodas in Xian which was built around the early 8th century.

They learned that the 3rd wife of Chairman Mao didn't like the pagodas so burned all the books in them and utterly destroyed many of them.   When Karin called they had used the hot tub and had ordered room service for dinner,  a steak sandwich with sauteed onions. This was the same thing they ordered last night but it was so good they didn't mind having it again.  As she was talking to me their doorbell rang, it was the maid wanting to turn down the beds and put chocolates on their pillows except Karin told them, "we are already in bed."  Karin called tonight which was really Tuesday morning for her, not to give me any news but to hear horse news. 
Today Dr. Hoerr was scheduled to come out in the morning but he didn't make it until afternoon.  Rebecca, Rosalie's filly's owner came all the way from Georgia to visit her filly. We brought her in the stall and haltered her and Rebecca spent 2 and a half hours working with her. That really was too long for such a young filly. She did ok the first couple hours but that flight or fight kicked in and Claire kicked out, hitting Rebecca.  Hopefully tomorrow will go better for her but she should probably keep the training sessions much shorter.  
When Dr. Hoerr arrived the first mare I had him look at was Zalena. This morning she was acting like she had something stuck in her mouth. Dr. Hoerr brought his dental tools, he didn't find anything stuck but she had a pocket around a tooth which was getting hay stuck in it. This is caused by some periodontal disease. He checked all of her teeth and none were loose but she needed to have her teeth floated. At 19 years of age she will need her teeth floated a little more often. Next was to have Ayanna's colt's blood drawn for his coggins test. His owner named him Evan's Sir Lancelot. 
He did ok with the needle stick, not as well as some of the foals but not terrible.  They were put out so more mares could be brought in. Duchess the outside mare would not stand to be sonagrammed. Dr. Hoerr had to sedate her and we were very disappointed to find that she had just ovulated. She never would let Valiant near her and kept mule kicking out.  She is a maiden mare and just not showing good signs. Her owner was called. They are going to pick her up tomorrow morning and go over their options.  Star was sonagrammed next.
She had a CH (an egg that did not ovulate) which means she is NOT cycling. No wonder she isn't showing. Dr. Hoerr gave me a shot to give her but it may not work. Sometimes these will cause a mare to not cycle all summer but sometimes the shot will bring them in.
Rosaleigh was next and confirmed in foal. She was bred to Evan and is due May 8th, 2019. Her foals are always gorgeous and we are thrilled she settled.
Jewel was also confirmed in foal and also bred to Evan.
Jewel is due May 10th, 2019. Both of these mares were only covered once by Evan so we are pretty thrilled they both settled.  Sheena was last. Dr. Hoerr found that she had ovulated on BOTH of her ovaries.
We will need to check her for twins in 16 days.  As soon as Dr. Hoerr left Ayanna, Jewel and Rosaleigh along with their foals were loaded into the stock trailer and taken out to Middle Grove. It is just so hot that they will be glad to get with the herd under the trees and probably will end up in the lake to cool off. All the mares here (except Roxanne and Rosalie) were turned out into the pond pasture so they could use the pond to cool off in.  Once I got home from Middle Grove and was walking back to the house I noticed Jenis, Lily, her colt and Sangria all were in the pond. By the time I grabbed the camera Sangria was walking out but the others were still drinking and splashing.
Mark picked up a battery operated weed wacker today and spent most of the evening out weed wacking.  He is pretty happy with his new toy but since it works well one can't really consider it a toy. After I finished cleaning the stalls used today Madiera was taken out, teased and covered by Evan.

Gourmet Created Cookies by Stef

I forgot to mention in the last blog where the cookies came from. These were created by Stephanie. I was blessed enough to try one of her creations a few weeks ago when Stephanie brought the lunch for Berean and was blown away how good they tasted. She told us the secret ingredient which I'm not going to share here.  They are $20.00 a dozen and WELL worth it for gourmet cookies.  If you want to try one come to the Berean office and donate a couple hours Tuesday morning. I'm going to be bringing some just for our special volunteers. Don't they look yummy! Well they taste even better than they look.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Father's Day

I'll start this with the China update from Karin and mom. They called tonight which was Monday morning to tell us about their day yesterday both the wall around the city of Xi'on and the visit to the Great Mosque.
There were a lot of soldiers in this city as it is Ramadan and the Muslim's get into a fervor and there is talk of Jihad so mom and Karin had soldiers around them pretty much all day to keep them safe.  What was sad was the guide had just finished telling Karin, "our Muslims are not like yours, ours are peaceful." and yet the city was filled with soldiers.  The other sad thing was the acid attacks on women here.  Karin saw a 20 something girl, her face disfigured by an acid attack and they still have honor killings. There is never honor in killing women!
We had a very nice Father's day. I went out early to tease the mares and Madiera showed. She was covered by Evan.  That is one mare I won't need to have sonagrammed tomorrow.
Our Airbnb guest left around 10:00 am today, after we left for church. She wrote us a nice text that they loved the apartment and especially loved the home made cookies. Ashley, the lady that actually booked the apartment wrote: "We loved the cookies, they were amazing and I think I ate them all by myself lol." They gave us a 5 star rating and wrote: “This place was amazing! It was more beautiful in person. Great place to get away from the city. Very clean and very homey. ”  Then left us a personal note that said: “Thanks again for everything we loved it and we would love to come back and stay again some time." What a nice thing to write.  This was our first time hosting for Airbnd and were happy with how it went. We have guests coming in on the 20th leaving on the 23rd and then July 5th-9th.
Mike Kaisner had the morning service for Father's day. He read in Genesis 45 where Father Abraham was to sacrifice Isaac his son and how each step of the way how his father heart had to ache but yet he still trusted God.  After the service Tim Funk surprised us with an engagement announcement. Karl Weyeneth was announced to Janet Rocke from Tremont. Amy Koch was sent a text that we were going to be stealing one of their sisters.  After church Sarah and Nolan brought Zion over
Phil and Anna brought Braelyn, Taegan and Kensley over and Rhoda and Lee brought over a slip and slide for the kids to use today as it is so hot outside. I somehow took it sideways and can't figure out how to flip it.
They had a good time. Mark grilled Parmesan chicken with peppers and onions for supper. Anna brought over watermelon and we had chocolate ice cream for dessert. We ended up over at the playground for volley ball. Rachel pulled out the Kubota over to level the sand before the games started up.

 Mike and Diane came riding over on Sheena and Jenis.  
After the horses were put away they came over to the playground to visit. Gary and Marie arrived with Gary carrying Timmy who has a broken leg.  Bethany, Joan's daughter came today from Bluffton with her sons Joshua and William. She will be joining Joan and Heather tonight for Gulf Shores, Alabama. Joan is now managing mom's condo down there and she has some work to do on it. The kids are excited about the trip and will have a lot of fun while Joan works. They are taking the 12 passenger van down and have it filled with Heather and her 3, Joan and her 3 youngest, and Bethany and her 2.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Raven's Road

With the weather predicted to reach into the 90's Mark went out to weed wack early.  I wanted to get all the horse work done in the morning.  The mares still needing to be covered were teased and non of them are showing yet. Dr. Hoerr is coming on Monday so I guess we will spring for ultrasounds to see why Star and Madiera are not coming into season.  Sheena showed and was covered by Valiant. The next big job was to take the truck and trailer out to Middle Grove to pick up Jenis, Sangria and Roxanne. Mike and Diane are hosting their family for Father's day and Mike wanted a couple riding horses and I wanted to bring Roxanne home as she is due in a month.
 Above is Hadassah and Ella in front of Galena and Drifter and below is Soul's colt. 

 Above is Ella (Hadassah x Evan) and below is Amelia (Missy x Evan).

 Above is Galena and Drifter and below is Foxy's filly. Both of these foals are by Valiant. 
 Below left is Wicktoria who was bred to Valiant and is due Aug 15th and right is Roxanne who was bred to Evan and due July 18th. Both are really showing their pregnancies. 

 Above is Ella Skye (Sheena x Valiant 2017 filly) and below is Roxanne. 

 Above is Foxy and her filly left and Soul and her colt right. Below is Foxy and her filly. They are doing very well out there. 
 Below is Soul and her colt, behind her all the way to the right is Indy and next to her is Oksana. I guess I didn't get any pictures of Tatiana but checked her and she is obviously pregnant. 
 I loaded Jenis and Sangria in the front of the trailer and Roxanne in the back.  Jenis and Sangria look great, if the weather cools down a bit I'll get new pictures of both of them.  I drove out the back way so I could try out the new road.  I can't remember what they named the big road,  but the road going off to the right is called Raven's Road.
 Below I am traveling on Raven's Road. His grave is right there. This road takes one over to the campground.
As soon as I got back the mares that were trailered were hosed down and fly sprayed. Anna had the girls swimming at the lake so I went over there to cool off a bit. Braelyn was fishing with a net and swimming underwater to place the net in the right place.
 She was actually catching fish this way using a flower as bait. Below Taegan is putting the fish in the bucket but stopped to show me first.
Emma waded out and was looking over at Joan's house when Huxley came swimming up to her.
 Her reaction was hilarious when Hux hit her side. She whirled believing she was being attacked by a shark or something and almost drowned poor Hux. 
Kensley and Taegan tried fishing with the nets but they didn't have any luck.
 Taegan thought it would be more fun to give Kensley rides on the sled. 
Braelyn caught about 20 little fish with her net, we let them all go then went to our house for lunch.  This evening Mark and I drove to Grace church in Morton, IL for Ruth the Musical. The music was top notch. The entry fee was a free will donation to the Peoria Rescue Mission . It was a packed house and the music was top notch but after spending the day outside working we were both tired and left for home at the intermission.