Sunday, March 24, 2019

Braelyn's 8th Birthday

We had a really wonderful day today. Church was full and the sound of happy voices rang out as we came into the doors. Tim Funk gave the morning message. He had the communion exhortation and then this afternoon Greg Rumbold had the message as his daughter was one of the 4 getting baptized today. Mark and I didn't stay for the dinner as we had guests coming. Today is Braelyn's 8th birthday and we celebrated it after our family dinner.

If you would like to see the rest of the pictures from the party click HERE.  Rhoda and Lee left for a concert and left Iris with us for the very first time. She wasn't too happy without her parents but finally settled down, played some then took a nap.  Our airbnb guests arrived sometime today. We didn't hear from them but when I checked the stall camera saw we had dogs in the stalls. They had asked for 4 stalls.
They actually put 4 of the collie puppies in the one foaling stall I was reserving for me just in case one of the mares delivers this week. I didn't mark the stalls but wrote in a note that they could have the 3 stalls on the right and the first stall on the left. I had all the horse bedding out and put down blankets and towels in those stalls. I'm sure it will be fine. I believe they have kept the last stall on the right open for me but I have no camera in that stall and no horse bedding down so if a mare get's close I'll have to ask them to move the dogs, strip that stall and put down clean bedding.
Rhoda and Lee just sent a text that they are on the way home.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Middle Grove Trip

This morning Mark and I moved 6 bales in. Both stallions needed a new bale, the middle paddock, the breeding shed paddock, the paddock next to Evan's, the short shelter and Raven's old paddock which Galena and Anna are in. At 10:00 am we took the new truck out to Middle Grove to check the mares now in the summer pasture.  I didn't see any salt blocks in there so will haul some of those out on Monday. Skye and Lisa came right up to meet us and wouldn't leave Mark alone.
Below is Star
 Zalena looks wonderful. She has thrived this winter. 
 The horses came from all directions to meet us. The grass is starting to come up and by next week we will need to bring Bunni and Cookie home to get them off the spring grass. Both of them foundered last spring.  Jenis and Tori both need to pick up weight but should soon with the grass. Tori does not look pregnant. We will need to bring her in for breeding in May and by then she should be in much better condition. Below three of them are coming from the woods. 
 When we arrived there were horses laying down enjoying the sunshine all over the place. Below is Lily's daughter Rosalie.
 At one point Mark was surrounded by 4 mares. 
 Skye, Lisa and Jenis followed Mark everywhere. 
 I think this is Roxanne
 Missy and off to the left is Ripper.
 That is Bunni taking a nap.
 Mika came down to get a drink.
 Lily is looking huge. She isn't due until June 15th which means she will probably deliver June 1st. 
 I didn't think to take pictures of the rest, I was too busy checking them over.  We didn't stay long as I still had things to do at home.  Today Foxy and her 2018 filly were moved together into the same paddock. Her filly came running right up to her and was shocked when Foxy pinned her ears and threatened her. Foxy is due April 29th and wants nothing to do with last years filly.  They are leaving for their new home on the 28th of March and will be traveling together so I wanted them to be in the same paddock with no other horses. They were both eating out of the same bale when I left so all should be good. The next job was to make sure the stalls were set up for dogs. We have show collies coming tomorrow, at least 4 of them. Their owners have booked the barn apartment for a week and will be showing their collies at the civic center in Peoria. Mom is going to be sad she missed this. She loves collies, her first dog was a collie and we had a collie when I was growing up. Mom, Karin and Jackie left for Gulf Shores this morning at 3:15 am. They hit bad traffic on I65 and were delayed so the trip to 16 hours arriving around 6:15 pm. We were glad to hear they made it safe.
Tonight Peoria had testimonies. Luke (Rachel and David's son) was first. When Tim Funk was looking for mom Luke spoke up with, "she isn't here but wrote me a letter telling me she is happy for me." Tasha (Ron and Lori's daughter) went next and Sadie (Greg and Heather's daughter) was last. It was a very nice night.
A very nice thank you note came in the mail from the little girl that stayed in the apartment last weekend.
Speaking of the apartment another booking came in for April. I'll have to ask Stephanie to make more cookies!

Friday, March 22, 2019

A Day With the Grands

We had a sunny but cold morning for our walk. Anna brought the girls at 7:30 and they got to go too.  They ended up at mom's house so I could run to Sam's Club to pick up some food for the personal showers the cousins were holding at the barn apartment for Anni and Jessica.  When I got back from Sam's, the girls were busy coloring.
They were bird watching out mom's window and admiring the birds so mom got out her bird books to show the girls how to identify each bird. What is interesting this year is she has a Bananaquit showing up at the feeder eating from the suet block all winter and it is has been coming back daily. This is a tropical bird with a down-curved bill, black upperparts, bright yellow underparts and a white eyebrow. They are warbler-like birds who live in the tropics.  

We were glad the bird survived but don't know how a bird from the tropics ended up in COLD Illinois. They drink nectar from flowers and eat fruit and small insects.  
When we left mom's place we went straight to Dollar General to buy markers and coloring books which kept them busy all morning. We met Stephanie, Israel, Elisabet, Sarah, Zion and Eden at McDonalds at noon where the kids had a ball in the playground area. 
 They played so hard they needed the calories the happy meals provided 
 The toys that came with the happy meals were either a camera or cell phone so the kids were having fun taking selfies with their pretend toys.

When we finished with playing and eating the girls were driven home. They really didn't want to go home but I had to get some work done. The apartment floor was cleaned and the apartment made ready for company tonight. Rhoda, Sarah, Rebekah and Emily came early to decorate it and make the dinner. Karin and Rebekah took Indy and Oksana AND a chain saw down and cleared all the trails of downed trees and branches.  After they got back Rebekah worked with Irish. She is making good progress with that Gypsy mare.
The horses were fed this evening and udders checked. None of them have made any progress so all should be good tonight. 

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Visitors for Thursday

Sarah showed up this morning with Zion and Eden.  Of course this grandma had to get some pictures of Eden.

 After Eden had been fed we went to feed the other hungry mouths and Zion was more than happy to help with that. Below she is feeding Ivan (Tatiana x Valiant).
 Giselle (Roxanne x Valiant) came to share in the feast too. 
 Zion is quite the climber. She climbed up on the fence to watch them eat. 
 The next horse fed was Evan.  Zion worked hard to climb up his gate to watch him eat. 

 The last horse Zion helped feed was Galena. 
 Mark stayed home from work today to get the most out of that rented roller.  He ordered a load of slag from Keystone to lay down first then a load of CA6 gravel to pack it in.  Below is a video of him rolling down the slag and then the load of gravel getting dumped.

The spring at the base of our hill filled back up but is no longer pooling on the drive. Yesterday Spark used the Kubota to empty it. The culvert is working just like it was supposed to.
This evening Dan, Levi and Diesel arrived. Emma had to quick check out that car. 
Dan got a new car at the auction yesterday and stopped by on his way home. 
Emma was sure Diesel had been in that car and was now in the house!
She was right. Diesel came all dressed up cool to visit her, shades and all.
Emma wasn't impressed and when they both went out she had to yell at him for getting attention she thought she deserved.
Diesel only wanted to please and didn't understand why she would bark so rudely at him.  We think it is because Diesel is much taller than Emma and she isn't used to looking up at other dogs.
A new booking came in today for April 13th-15th. This couple is a home school couple with 3 girls one of which is a baby. Their oldest is a 12 year old horse lover and they are coming down for her birthday. They are also bringing their mother and a dog. What is interesting is since they are going to be here over a Sunday asked if they could go to church with us. Of course I said yes. Hopefully we will have a foal on the ground by then but maybe they will get lucky and get to help with a foal being born. Anna is due April 2nd but for the last 2 years has gone 10 days late. Lola is due on April 12th, Marika is due on the 16th and Galena on the 17th.

Condo For RENT in Gulf Shores

Are you ready for a break from this LONG cold miserable winter?  Ben and Taunya bought a 3 bedroom 2 bath condo in Gulf Shores right on the beach and have just finished remodeling it. This condo is also close to restaurants, the public beach which has bathrooms and changing rooms. That means you can arrive early and enjoy the beach or pool while waiting for check in time. Below is an aeriel view of their condo which shows how close it is to the beach and the perfect location for all the entertainment Gulf Shores offers.
They have just listed it for rent on VRBO and if you have the time and want to head down to enjoy the beach, pool, sunshine, and warmth this is the place to go. The beach is calling YOU. The walk down to the beach from their condo is an easy one.
Their condo sleeps 11 and is family friendly. If you would prefer the pool water to cool off, or want to let the kids play in the pool while you sit comfortably and watch, check out the pool from the balcony of their condo.
The kitchen is well designed for families.
With plenty of working space for cooking IF you just want to relax and don't want to try out the many good restaurants in Gulf Shores.

 The living room has very comfortable seating.
 Each bedroom has a view of the beach AND very comfortable beds. Below is the master bedroom with a king size bed. 
This is the view of the beach taken right off the master bedroom balcony.
The balconies are really nice to sit outside to enjoy views and the wonderful warmth of Gulf Shores.
The queen bedroom is pictured below. 
The downstairs bathroom is pictured below.
The upstairs loft bedroom can sleep an entire family of 5 easily with a king size bed plus bunk beds. PLUS a full bath upstairs.

Ben and Taunya have the condo well stocked for families. They even have baby equipment for the guests to use.
AND the condo is well stocked with beach towels and that all important washer and dryer right in the unit.

All of this helps for those who just want to pack light.  Check out what Taunya writes about her condo: Family friendly condo in a quiet setting with no one above you. Prime location on the BEACH SIDE of the boulevard in downtown Gulf Shores with walking distance to plenty of area attractions including restaurants and shopping. Incredibly short walk to The Hangout, Flip Flop Deli Shop, Bahama Bob's Beach Side Cafe, Pink Pony, Pier 33 (groceries), and souvenir shops.
No hassle booking and check-in with KEY-LESS entry! Just let us know who is coming, where you're from, and your dates.Low density beach side complex provides a fun setting for a relaxed beach vacation for a large family at a great value. The unit sleeps 8 adults comfortably. With kids you could easily sleep 11 using the pullout couch and/or loading up the bunk beds. The unit has reserved parking with two flights of stairs - no elevator. Being in a town house style will make you feel more a part of the beach compared to a high rise. Enjoy a side view of the beach from EVERY bedroom and a spacious pool area with grills and tables available. We have free WiFi, cable, and brand new big screen, smart TVs. The pool area is nicely secluded providing convenient family fun and a little more shield on those windy days!
MAIN LEVEL:The living room offers a leather sofa bed along with two power leather recliners. There are two bedrooms downstairs and a full bath with a tile surround shower. The master has a king platform bed at 16 inch height making it easy to store your suitcase underneath. It features a memory foam mattress with a custom made farm wood head board. Both downstairs bedrooms feature a 50 inch TV, closets, and sliding door to the private balcony for relaxing beach views. The second bedroom has a queen bed. The kitchen features new backsplash and granite countertops. The dining room has a custom built farmhouse table.
LOFT:The upstairs loft-bedroom is perfectly set up for a whole separate family. It features a king bed, a twin over full bunk bed, a 50inch TV, and an Xbox 360. Enjoy wonderful views from so many windows. Conveniently, there is a full bath as well upstairs with a tile surround shower.New onsite laundry now available! Located at the top of the stairs, you don't have to go through anyone's bedroom!
PACKING MADE EASY:-We have a community sharing drawer where you will find trash bags, aluminum foil, sandwich bags, gallon bags, and plastic wrap. There is also a cabinet with basic spices which also includes sugar, baking soda, olive oil, vanilla, flour, brown sugar, vinegar, and non-stick cooking spray. For the benefit of all, we ask that you restock any items as needed.-We provide all the dishes, silverware, and kitchen utensils and appliances such as a coffee maker, crock pot, electric skillet, blender, toaster, air fryer, pots, pans, bowls, casserole dishes, and pretty much anything you will need to cook full meals.-For children, we have a mini crib / pack n play fully assembled in the master closet, Fisher Price On-The-Go Shade Dome, and a children’s high chair that can be attached to a kitchen chair.-Beach towels are rolled and racked next to the front door. Please wash and roll back up before checkout. Two beach chairs are available as well.No pets and no smoking! 
Parking $10 per car per stay. Covered and reserved parking directly under the unit with enough length for two vehicles. We hope you enjoy your vacation and experience what Gulf Shores has to offer! You will not regret the unit and especially not the location!
If you are interested in booking a fantastic beach vacation in sunny beautiful Gulf Shores, Alabama check out the link to the left under great website links. That will take you right to their VRBO listing. OR just click HERE for the link that will take you directly to their listing.