Wednesday, July 31, 2019

The Big Trip Out West

By Heather:
There are 10 of us and all of our luggage but thankfully these are a bunch of MKs who know how to pack light.  We have Mark and Judy's 12 passenger van and their very space efficient camper.  Joan is amazed at what all we packed and yet there is room. Our first day driving is the longest as we go across the Great Plains with our destination being Greg and Star Harvie’s house in Kimball, Nebraska. It took us about 13 1/2 hours with only quick stops for gas. We made sandwiches in the car for lunch and kept the wheels rolling as much as possible. For supper we called ahead to a Little Caesar’s Pizza and had our order ready to pick up as we got there and again ate in the car. We passed the time talking, sleeping, reading a read aloud, (Bruchko), and watching a movie. 
We arrived at 9:00 PM and visited a while with Star who served us some yummy rhubarb cobbler and ice cream, then Sean and Heather took the guest room and the boys got the living room to sleep in while Joan and the girls stayed in the camper.  So far so good for our first night.
Day 2 Wednesday:
We left Kimball, NE by 9:00 am after a yummy breakfast of sweet rolls, melon and a casserole that Star made for us. We touched Wyoming to say that we had been there and then drove on to colorado.  Joan was the first one to see the mountains. We had a good time singing in the van today and have continued to enjoy our reading time in the book of Ester. What a great story that clearly shows the sovereignty of God.  We enjoyed our visit to Focus on the Family. The place was closed for a staff meeting so we took advantage of that time to get some great pictures of the kids.  The 3 story slide and scavenger hunts were fun.  We were all impressed by how well Ellie, Faith, Joey and Berlica did in the Kids Radio studio.  That was fun.  We are thankful to be at Vern and Janell Salter's house tonight. The yummy supper Janell made of spaghetti was great.  We rushed out of there to get to the dress rehearsal of Beauty and the Beast that Steve and Bethann 'Clary" Elisha were in.  It was so great. Ask the girls about when the wolves and the Beast went by close to them.  We're back at Vern and Janell's and thankful the boys can sleep inside tonight since it's raining nicely out. We're looking forward to tomorrow and thankful for all the blessings the Lord has given us so far on this trip.
 Below are pictures of the trip.

 Focus on the Family visitor center today

5 Out of 5

Dr. Hoerr came this morning for ultrasounds and all 5 mares that were done were pronounced PREGNANT!  We were pretty thrilled.
Rosaleigh was done first as she and her 2019 filly were in the stall eating their extra serving of grain. Rosaleigh is due June 22nd, 2020.  She has the most beautiful foals by Evan. All of them are well built and have the mega hair.
Hadassah was the next in line for her ultrasound and she too was pronounced PREGNANT! We have taken a deposit on Hadassah so I will let the buyer know she will be getting a 2 for 1 price. Hadassah is due June 10th, 2020.
Next done was one of our favorite mares, Jewel. Jewel's dam was our big Thoroughbred mare Grace and Grace had Jewel when she was 23 years old. Jewel has foals with extreme movement and she also happens to be a wonderful riding mare for us. Sometimes we wonder why we are so very blessed with these amazing animals. Jewel was bred to Evan and is due June 15th, 2020.
Madiera was the next in line. She was bred to Evan and is due the very same day as Sheena who happened to be bred to Valiant. We are thankful we have 2 stallions as both mares ovulated shortly after their cover on July 10th.  Both Madiera and Sheena are due June 20th, 2020.
Above is Madiera and below is Sheena. Both throw amazing foals.
As soon as Dr. Hoerr left, Jewel and her colt, Madiera and her colt and Sheena and her colt were all loaded into the big trailer and hauled out to Middle Grove. They were unloaded and didn't go very far before dropping their heads to graze on that abundant grass.
 As I was getting ready to pull out Chuck arrived with another load of hay for that farm.  
 He brings 7 at a time on that trailer. I talked to him a bit before closing up my trailer and heading back to the farm.  The horses still hadn't moved very far away. They were content to graze instead of looking for the rest of the herd.
Karin had a big group for trail riding today as she let Tara and Jay's daughters go out on the 'death trail'. Jay and Tara have 4 daughters and 3 sons.  She used Sangria, Tori, Missy and Cookie. 
As soon as I got back Tatiana was teased. If she was out I was going to take another load to Middle Grove but she showed as soon as Valiant neighed. She was covered and I won't take her out until she no longer shows. 
Both Mark and I were so busy we didn't take time to eat supper before church. Mom AND Sarah Reinhard didn't have time either to eat so we joined the AC crowd that heads to Culvers after Wednesday service. It was fun but we didn't get home until late.  We are just TOO OLD to be staying up that late.  How do others DO IT?  The trip home was torture.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Heading West

We had a beautiful morning for our walk and even Beth came. She brought eggs from the Goose Ranch that hadn't yet been refrigerated for Joan's vacation. Joan was loaded and leaving as we got to her drive.
There are 10 of them in that van and a loaded trailer. They are heading out West for this vacation. WAY out west even planning on visiting the Grand Canyon. I had to leave early from the walk as today is Berean day.  Today went well there. If you would like to read about our morning there click HERE.
Taunya, the kids and her dad joined us for dinner. Ralph and Jamie came by this evening for a short visit. Ron helped Mark with the tractor tonight. Now we are all ready to start loading the bales Ryan will be bringing over this week. After playing all day the kids came in for a drink and have a bubble bath.
Heather sent back some pictures of their first day of that long journey out West.  They still  have a long way to travel and hope to be hitting lots of National parks on this trip.

Today they made it all the way to Nebraska where they will be spending the night with a friend from Haiti.
Thank you Heather for the pictures. Keep them coming.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Website Pictures

We had a very very small amount of rain this morning, so small that it didn't even wet the bottom of the rain gauge. It didn't stop us from walking as this morning is the last time we will all be together for a couple weeks.  Joan leaves tomorrow for her vacation then we leave on Saturday for ours.  After the walk I left for Sam's Club. Karin arrived for a scheduled trail ride and found herself one horse short. Thankfully Jewel was here and she rode Jewel double with Berlica behind. Jewel's colt followed behind perfectly even through the creek crossings.  The other horses on the ride were Sangria, Hadassah, Tori, Missy and Cookie.  No one thought to take pictures.  Gertie brought Braelyn, Taegan and Kensley over for Funday Monday joining Addyson and Jace. Jack and Abe were not feeling well. 
Tatiana's filly is a week old today so she was taken out to the round pen for pictures to update the website.
 This week old filly has the MOVES! She is going to be a super star in the dressage world. Her grandsire is EVAN and her sire is Valiant so of course she has big movement.  She is just a perfect example of a Friesian filly. She has that beautiful well set on long neck, a short back and of course that nicely rounded apple buttocks. 
Did I mention this filly is for sale? We are only asking $8000.00 for her and that is almost unheard of for a filly of this quality.  Tatiana is in her foal heat and was covered today by Valiant.  Sure hope she settles on this heat as we will be hauling her and her filly out to Middle Grove by Friday. As long as I had the camera out Rosaleigh's filly was taken to the round pen for her 3 month pictures. She is actually 3 months and 5 days old now. 
 She is Rosaleigh's 3rd foal by Evan. Her first 2 were just as nice.  We are pretty thrilled with what Rosaleigh produces.  
 This morning she was prancing around her paddock showing off for all the walkers and they were admiring her majestic movement.
I'm pretty sure she is sold but won't really know until after we get home from Vacation August 11th.  The lady that wants her picked the name Lady Rosanna. As I was working on registrations for some of the other foals that is the name I sent today for her papers.  Jewel's colt we named Josiah.  
 This colt by Evan is going to easily top 16.2 hands. I wouldn't be surprised if he ends up close to 17 hands AND he too will be a dressage superstar. Although he has such a want to please attitude he will really be able to excel at any discipline. 
We have Josiah priced at only $4500.00.  I was not able to send in the papers for Galena's filly. I lost the envelope that had her hair that must be sent in with the registration and Galena's filly is out at Middle Grove.  This filly loves the water and is a surprisingly good swimmer. She was swimming laps around her mother when Karin took Galena out into the lake.

 She is going to be a well rounded, used to just about anything horse when she grows up. She will also probably top 17 hands and SHE has that fancy black and white coat! I don't have a name picked out for her yet so if you want her and buy her you can pick out her name for the registration papers. 
Taunya brought her dad over for dinner tonight. After dinner I took Abe and Addyson out on a golf cart ride through the fields and past the alligator swamp.  Mark put the bale spear on the skid steer as Ryan is bringing over hay tomorrow.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Another Fun Sunday at Grandma's

We had another great Sunday. I went out early to get Tatiana covered by Valiant then made breakfast and cleaned up the house for the company coming this afternoon.  Ben brought Jack and Jace to morning church and Mark and I brought Addyson. At lunch Jack wasn't feeling well so Ben took all the kids back to the apartment. Jack caught the vomiting sickness going around and he spent all afternoon and evening in the apartment. The rest of us had a good time. Before dinner Jace saw a snake and had help from Taegan, Kensley and Abe catching it. It is just a baby snake so after the pictures the kids let the snake go. The kids took turns holding it.

 Abe wasn't quite brave enough to hold it be he was fascinated with it.
We had haystacks for dinner then took off for an adventure on the golf cart.
 We stopped at the creek to catch minnows and frogs.
We saw 2 deer bounding through the woods and when we ended up on the road saw a dead stinky skunk and a dead flattened raccoon.  We drove straight to the playground when we got back where the volley ball games were going strong.
The golf cart was parked at the tramps so the kids could jump off.
 There were plenty of people to visit with.
 Dan's dog Diesel wanted to visit with Ron but for some reason Ron did NOT want to visit with Diesel.
 Bob and Myrna decided to go to Gils for supper tonight and asked Mike and Diane to join them. They took a jeep ride around the place before ending up at the playground.
Joan picked up Nancy before church and then after church took her fishing. Nancy pulled in a nice size bass. She was thrilled. She wanted mom to make sure to tell Spark as he wasn't here tonight.
The little kids had a ball at the playground.

 The volley ball games went on until after 9:00 pm. They were very entertaining to watch.
 As soon as the last game was over the children were taken over for bubble baths. They had been swimming most of the evening and that warm bubbly water felt great. 
If you would like to see the rest of the pictures from this afternoon and evening click HERE

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Early Trip to Middle Grove

I took the big trailer out to Middle Grove this morning to pick up Jewel, her colt, Sheena and her colt. Diane met me out there with the 4 wheeler as she and Mike spent the night at the cabin. We drove first to the top of the hill but no horses. Taking the 4 wheeler along the ridge we drove we still couldn't see the herd looking down from either side. We finally found them at the big lake edge where they had gone as a group to get a drink.  It was a long trip back holding 2 lead ropes while Diane drove slowly. Sky followed us almost the entire way not happy at all that we were taking her mom and her brother away. As a 2 year old she is HUGE. She easily looks like a full grown mare. When we finally got down the big hill and out of sight of the rest of the horses she turned around and galloped back up.  Too bad I hadn't taken the camera, she is very photogenic. It was too hard to have the camera and bring 4 horses. They all loaded up perfectly, just walking right in. What a blessing it is to have foals that follow their mom's and are use to stepping into trailers.  When I got back I was followed in by a car bringing some guests of Karin's for a trail ride.  Ellie and Kayla joined this group. Horses used were Sangria, Hadassah, Tori, Missy and Cookie.  Poor Braelyn got sick yesterday and wasn't able to go on their trip with the Messner's. Phil stayed home with her but today he got called out on a service call. As Braelyn was feeling better he brought her over to stay with me while he ran the call. She got to come on the trail ride on the golf cart. We have had such dry weather the creek is way down. Below Braelyn is rescuing minnows, taking them out of the small puddle and putting them in the creek while we were waiting for the horses.
Below Karin is giving them all instructions on how to leave the reins loose as the horse makes her way down into the creek.

As soon as Philip got back I ran to Sam's to buy food for our dinner tonight and tomorrow night. The 2 horse trailer was backed into the indoor arena, cleaned out and made ready for Star and her filly's trip to their new home.  They were loaded just before Nolan arrived right at 5:00 pm. I was again pleased that Star's filly didn't even hesitate but walked right into the trailer.  The golf cart was used to go on a long adventure with the grand children.  We went for what they thought was miles on the trails and ended up on Lancaster. We saw lots of interesting things which even included a great big dead snake on the road.  Jace wanted me to bring it home and skin it so it would match the other snake skin hanging from the curtain rod. Rhoda came to give rides on Cookie to Ben and Taunya's 4 children but I was busy making supper so didn't get a single picture. All 4 did very well. Since they were just finishing up supper was brought up to the apartment and we all ate in there. The boys all got bubble baths when we were done. Rhoda decided the snake skin in the house just wasn't appropriate but it was already too late to run it back over to Joan's house. I'll have to do that later as it belongs to the kids that found it in the first place. Monica found a couple pictures of Indy's full sister from Canada and shared them with me.  She was born the same year as Valiant and we took her and her mom Ylse to the Northern IL Horse Fest where these foals were the star of the show.  Her owner writes she is close to 17 hands and we believe it as Indy is also close to that height.

Raven sure threw gorgeous foals that grew up to be amazing mares. The last item to be reported is now there are only TWO puppies left. Fred out of Rizzy's litter and Dash out of Ruby's litter. 

Feel free to visit our website if you would like more information on either of these puppies.