Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Another Peaceful Afternoon

I am sure it was because I was mentally gearing myself up to do my normal marathon Wednesday, where kids have back to back activities - then the sudden absence of all of those driving commitments meant even though I got home 12 hours after leaving the contrast was so much better, it felt peaceful.  I guess that's like the phenomena of hitting your head against the wall because it feels good when you stop.

First, my college-aged child called and said she was at her alma mater with her brother, so there was no 15 mile side-trip to the university.  Then, my 3rd child said he had too much homework to go to his Wednesday evening activity.  That saved me an extra 60 miles of driving.  I actually got a nap in the car while waiting for athletics and play practice to finish....

When we got home, my youngest and I visited Gib.  I had used a few of those extra minutes saved to look up swayback on Google.  I found out how to measure to see if a horse was swaybacked, or just looked like it because of tall withers.  Gib's apparent dip is not swayback - it's the same ratio as the other horse, but his back is quite long.  He is also taller than I thought. He turns out to be 15.2!  I guess I am just used to my monster mare, so he looked small - and his head carriage is so high because he is so nervous, and because of his breeding, a bit, I suppose, so it makes his back look lower.  That long back and relatively long neck make his legs look short, too - especially since his head is so far up in the air.   However, his walk and trot are pretty lofty, considering.  In fact, I was thinking, "Nah, don't need this horse," until I saw him trot.

I played with him a bit - working on giving his head, lowering at the poll when asked, flexing bending.  He is quite a willing guy. He will readily give his head when asked, but it pops back up when you release pressure.  I think working on collection and impulsion will help - but that long back will make it harder for him to collect, that's for sure.  Mostly, I want him to move off the leg and seat aids and lighten him up in the mouth.  People have just been yanking on him.

Now for sheep news:  Audrey is starting to snot up again: really having trouble with her nasal bots.  I switched wormers and that helped, but she needs it again I suppose.  None of the other sheep are having the same issue.  All the lambs are getting big - it's a blast to see them racing around in a big circle and jumping on each other.  Hulu is especially tricky: he will sit there grazing peacefully, and then suddenly jump on any sheep that wanders close, fooled by his apparent absorption.  Even Elvis is not immune from the tricks of the lambs.

Yesterday I got a bunch of eggs, but today, only 4 from the mature hens.  One hen is just not laying.  I wish I knew which one it was - she'd be stew.  It's fun to see the difference between the pullet eggs and the mature eggs. They are so cute and small.  I hope to use the long weekend (Saturday's full) to get some seeds in the ground and to bake a lot of bread.  Probably, I should use part of Monday to get some cleaning done!  Also, next week is the end of a grading term, so it is time to grade a stack of papers... not too long 'til Spring Break - I can get a lot done around here during those two weeks.  I am looking forward to it.

Maybe I should name Gib "Peace" - he seems to be strewing it everywhere.

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