Archive for November, 2014


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This autumn, we welcomed a four-legged addition to the family. What a beauty he is! Meet Finnegan, a 4 1/2-year-old arabian-thoroughbred cross (anglo-arab).


Finnegan has a very sweet personality, and takes all that comes his way in stride. He is calm and intelligent.


He is currently living at a local stable so that we can take advantage of an indoor arena and training over the winter.


Finnegan has a good start at basic work under saddle. My daughter Ponygirl and I are beginning work at building his dressage foundation. Above, Ponygirl rides with visiting Clinic guest coach Jade Deter.


We don’t know much about Finnegan’s background. We purchased him from a foster home after he had been rescued from an auction frequented by meat buyers. How he came to be in such dire circumstances is a mystery. He is a bit underweight for his size and age, and we expect him to do some filling out over the next year.


A lucky star must have guided him to us and a chance at a new life.


We look forward to many happy years with our new boy.


Here I am in the saddle, above, and Finnegan with Ponygirl, below.


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After a cold and windy weekend closed out a cold and snowy week, today we are being treated to a mild, sunny day. The snow has quickly melted and although it is still windy, the sun is blissfully warm.


It’s amazing how some plants can cope with the cold. In spite of having been buried in snow and subjected to freezing temperatures, these little epimedium plants appear unscathed. The parsley is still edible!


While this bright day is lovely, we know this balmy weather won’t last long. However, we’re ready for winter, as ready as we ever will be.


A few weeks ago, I had a load of bark mulch delivered and I spread about half of it around the garden. If this mild spell lasts for a few days, I might do a little more mulching, but otherwise, the remaining pile will be handy in the spring.



A variety of birdfeeders are in place and are already attracting an appreciative flock of diners. You can see that these goldfinches are ready for winter too. They have lost their breeding-season brilliant yellow and are now dressed in a muted gold feathercoat, ready to be one of the flock.


Here’s our little kayak, hanging in the rafters over the wood pile.


Here’s even more wood! Garden ornaments have been returned to the little garden shed, where they’ll be protected from the worst of the weather.



This hay storage building is new this fall. It was installed just a few weeks ago and our hay supply has been moved inside. It will offer drier, more convenient storage than the old, rather battered outbuilding.


Also new this autumn is this run-in shelter for Czarina and her two donkey pals. They’ll be able to eat their morning hay in comfort, protected from the wind and snow. But they’re not there this morning. They’re taking advantage of the last of the pleasant weather to graze for a few hours more.


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November Sky


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Czarina in Autumn


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First Snow


A week ago, we awoke to find a skim of ice on the river. In the afternoon, a flurry passed through, and while the snow didn’t stay on the ground, it stuck to the ice, making a pattern of white on the water.


It marked the beginning of snow season. Over the next few days, the temperature dropped and wintry squalls moved through, leaving a frosty white landscape in their wake.


A frigid week followed. Summer is just a fading memory. We are consoled by the thought that at least we aren’t in hard-hit Buffalo, which received more than 65 inches of snow last week. Tonight, as I write this, the temperature is above freezing and it is raining.


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Welcome, Little Girl


It’s been a busy autumn season, with some exciting additions and changes, but surely foremost among these is the arrival of our first grandchild, a little girl! She was born on Saturday, November 15th, just after noon. She weighted in at 10 pounds, 4 ounces. Mom Seabrooke and Baby are both doing well.


Here she is, taking her first car ride on the way home from the hospital. Below, she’s charming her new grandparents. We’re still waiting to learn her name. Congratulations to the new parents. We wish you much joy in your new life together.


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She’s Got The Cutest Little Baby Face


Our first grandchild, a little girl, born November 15th.

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Half the Sky

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All across the fall season, flocks of Canada geese can be seen heading south. Many stop to forage in the numerous corn fields around here. Though the Canada geese are a common sight, I always watch for other less common travellers keeping company with them. I recently spotted these Snow geese in a field near here. We seem to be on the edge of the snow geese migration path. Seabrooke, who lives to the west of us, never sees any.


The photo below shows a good cross-section of snow geese color variations. There are two morphs of adults present, the all-white and the blue-gray with white heads. There are also a few juveniles. They are the light gray ones with the grayish bill, in the back, and the whitish ones with the dark stripe down the back of the head and neck. Godspeed.


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