Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Happy 94th Birthday

On Sunday my grandfather celebrated his 94th birthday so on Saturday morning I flew up to meet my parents and Amy in Rotorua and spend a day at the lake before driving to Hamilton on Sunday for my grandfather's birthday and then back home on Monday - Whistlestop!

I grew up spending my summer holidays at our family bach on the shores of Lake Tarawera. It's a stunning spot and I miss spending time there but, when you have a horse stud and your busiest time of the year is November through to February, summer holidays don't really happen! That said, hopefully we will get up there late summer 2009 for a week or so. Seems such a shame to have access to such a truly beautiful property and never ever use it! I've included some photos taken at Tarawera to provide a glimpse of how beautiful it can be.

View over to viewing platform
Flower Power
Yes, it was cold in the lake!

Not really a lot to report on the farm/horse front. Everyone is doing well, Maude looks like she is starting to drop some condition so I will increase her feed and start throwing some extra out to Reilly as well. Aine is such a big girl, she's going to start dragging her mum down soon if I don't keep on top. She will be weaned in the next month/six weeks in preparation for her new home and Maude will be scanned next week to confirm that she is in foal and only carrying the one foal. Hamish and Minty have had a great week and I am confident that Minty will be in foal. Girl is another matter altogether however and will just be a case of watch this space!

Bree has now had about as much time off as she has had in work, haha so, it's back to her this week as well. She's parked up right next to the house so I have no excuse really. It has been awfully hot tho!

Friday, 26 December 2008


Hamish got lucky for Christmas as Minty (Naazarene) came into season. So, they were introduced and, it was love at first sight and now Minty is following Hamish around the paddock, completely besotted. I had to take 'Girl' out as she was refusing to let Hamish anywhere near Minty - what is it with these pain in the a$$ maiden mares this year?! But, once she was out of the equation, everything went swimmingly.

Minty and her boy
Follow the leader
Pretty Minty
Pas de deux
I WISH this was in focus!

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

We're getting Chrismassy

We dashed into the $2 shop yesterday to avail ourselves of a couple of new sets of reindeer antlers and what better way to test them out than try them on a couple of the 'kids'. Robbie and Rory are today's antler models (oh, and Amy too, of course!).

Step aside Rudolph!
It's Rory
the red-antlered reindeer!
What are ya doin' mum?!
Ho ho ho little girl
Mmmm smells good
Can I eat it!
Pair of posers

And a brief video ...

Monday, 22 December 2008

OK, call me chicken!

Look what Santa brought me early for Christmas! Seven dear wee speckled chicks. We have at least two more hens sitting on clutches - one clutch is a bit of a communal one with at least three hens sharing 'sitting duties' - too cute! These little guys are now safely ensconced in the A-frame chicken house, having hatched in long grass NEXT to the house (of course).

Our chickens are basically free range. We do have a run for them and, from time to time they are locked up in it so we can collect their eggs but this year I have just let them pick about completely by themselves, supplementing them with kitchen scraps and I am going to be rewarded with more chicks than I know what to do with. Luckily for us our friends up the road have offered to take them off our hands and raise them for us. They'll come back eventually - smoked! *insert open mouth wide-eyed smiley here*!

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Gone to the dogs (and cats) and Rory

I must admit that this year I have struggled to find my Christmas spirit. It's been quite a hard year emotionally having lost a dear little cat and three beloved horses, including two very special homebreds, in very difficult and trying circumstances but Christmas is a time for celebrating everything that we have to be grateful for and, as we have much to give thanks for, it's time to forget the bad things and celebrate the good. I decided it was also time that some of the animals got in on the act too so today Roscoe, Kruger and Omar would like to wish everyone a very merry Christmas!

Roscoe Kruger
Omar & Roscoe
and just because he is so cute, I popped out and took some pix of Rory. I took some Christmas spirit out to him and he was happy to don the antlers but he then managed to shake them off and tread on them and snap one - bad Rory! This little colt really is the apple of my eye right now. Sure, he aint the bay filly I ordered but, he's one right out of the box regardless and is going to make a very, very smart heavyweight hunter in a few years!

Rory walking
Rory standing
Head shot 1
Head shot 2
Bad Rory 1
Bad Rory 2
Bree got the day off yesterday as I had some hideous 24 hour bug that saw me with my head down the loo and a fever. No fun. I'm feeling heaps better today so will wait for the weather to settle a bit and go and get her in for a quick ride. I had a friend look at her with a view to leasing her on Friday but she was too forward for her so, it is back to the drawing board. I have another friend interested in her and she will come and see her on Christmas Eve.

Hamish has his very first pony mare arriving on Tuesday. She's got bloodlines that I just adore, being by Windermere Remember Me (Cusop Display/Desert Wings mare) out of an Arab mare Zannarah Naavana (Naaddel/Silver Sparkle mare). She is not a maiden which is a huge relief as the maiden mares we have had this season have been, without exception, complete trolls to serve/try to serve! The only maiden we have served who gave us no trouble was Rory's mum (her first foal, Rory, is the result of AI breeding). It makes you appreciate your own mares even more when the alternatives seem to want to make like so difficult!

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone!

We helped our friends Karen and John put up their Christmas Tree today and during the proceedings Amy offered up this little impromptu performance for us and, as I managed to capture it, I would like to share it. I particularly like the bit towards the end where she has to fight off an attack of the 'smiles' - I think she covers well.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

I clambered aboard ...

I'm waiting to hear back from Bree's owner but I think it is 4 or 5 years since she was last ridden. She was very good but we definitely have our first goal - a nice free walk! There was a lot of very slow jog and although I tried to ride her as quietly as I possibly could, I barely managed more than half to three quarters of a 20m circle in walk. Still, it is good to have goals! And, that aside, she was an angel and I think we both enjoyed ourselves. Nick brought the camera out to take a few photos and, here they are. Tomorrow: MORE walk!

Headed down the race
Have an audience
Whoa Bree
Good girl
A walk?
Some more walk?
Seriously Bree, walk!
Argh, look UP woman!
A picture of concentration
Chillin' & relaxin'
Are we done yet?

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Sabrina - SO cute!

So today I dragged Bree out of her paddock, gave her a thorough brush, trimmed her mane and tail and popped her on the lunge. Not sure who had the most fun, me or her! She's very cute and trotted around with her little nose down and even popped over a tiny fence. Just 10 minutes today at walk and trot on each rein and tomorrow I will try my old mac boots on her for size and clamber aboard - if she doesn't mind.
Such a pretty girl
Trotting nicely
But THIS is what she loves!
With Bryce
Don't think you are going to see ...
Me jumping this height on her! Canter