November 19, 2023

Monday was a busy one, there were so many people here getting stuff done. Tracey, Jake, Karen, Leah, Alana, Tamara, Lisa, Tamsen, Hailey, Quinn, Skye, Maureen, and Erika were all here to help. Robyn came to trim the hooves of all the donkeys and mules while some of us did chores, some of us worked on feeding out loop and pumpkins, some of us worked on cleaning up the yard and some of us worked on the shed. A couple of the folks got on horseback to try and round Chico up as he was the only mule they didn’t get into the corral. They worked on it for quite a while but they never were able to catch him. So I guess Chico 2 – Team 0.

Tuesday Karen and Leah were here again to work on the shed, they are doing an amazing job with it. I took care of whatever chores they didn’t get done before I got up. It’s been really nice to have some beautiful, warm days to be outside working but holy smokes the yard is a mess. The ground is not frozen so you sink into 4 inches of mud, there are also big puddles and snow in some spots. I’m not sure I have any boots, pants, coats or gloves left that aren’t full of mud. I never thought I would say this but I can’t wait until the ground freezes.

Wednesday morning I got up and did chores, I really want to put the horses from Alberta out in the pasture but I know I have to keep them quarantined for another work. I don’t really like having them in the isolation pen, it’s okay for them but I know they would rather get out and run around a bit. They seem to be settling in nicely and nicker to me when they see me coming out the front door. A few of them are getting to be pretty friendly but the others are still unsure. They will come around and learn I can be trusted, they always do. Jake came out after school and helped me do mash and meds, after that he had a lesson. I had to leave to pick up a prescription from Dr. Neil but I got a report at the grocery store later and they were very happy with how good Blue did and Priya was tickled pink to have been able to ride him.

Thursday morning I got up to do chores and the second I came around the side of the house, I watched Daisy flip up the edge of the fence and she and Babe just came right out of the pig pen as happy as clams. They headed straight for the garage where all the feed is. UGH! They had a bill in there ripping open the bags and eating whatever they could eat. There is not much point in trying to strong-arm two pigs, so I went to fix the fence instead. Once I had that secured I found the loop bin with the rest of the bread in it that Alana set aside on the weekend to make sure we fed out on Monday and of course we didn’t. There is nothing that will entice Babe and Daisy more than bread. I finally got them to ignore all the feed in the garage and follow me into the pig pen and got them securely locked inside …. until next time. I did the rest of the chores peacefully and Shadow was of course more than ready to come into the yard to get his special treatment for the day. Tina and Azzie only ate half of their feed, I think they are on to me and know I am trying to hide medication in it, I might have to pull some new tricks out of my sleeves. When it was time to put Shadow back in his pen for the night he pinned his ears right back and started to walk away from me, he is such a spoiled pony, I think he would like to live in the yard all the time.

Friday morning I woke up and our hay guy was already here, I think he secretly likes catching me in my pajamas ;P We got all the hay bales in place and I got chores done. Karen showed up and got to work on the shed. I headed out to pick up our horse trailer (YAY!!!) and our loop stuff for the animals. Joy and I got all the loop stuff loaded into the trailer when Anneleise showed up to “help”. She handed me a “Sherri’s Sick Kit”, she is so adorable! It contained a sinus rinse kit, distilled water, Vitamin C, Echinacea, Oregano Oil, and Flaxseed Oil with instructions on what to take when. Very cute, but not a bowl of chicken soup in sight. When I got back home Karen had quite the story for me. Apparently, Tom (our Turkey) was super helpful while I was gone. Karen puts this piece of styrofoam across the doorway while she works in there to keep the animals out and Tom bust right through it today like the Kool-Aid Man! (ohhhh yeah!!!!) Hilarious. I finished up the waters, gave the horses their meds, wound the hoses all up and finished off the day.

Saturday morning I woke up and the chores were already partially done by Sean (my husband) and Karen. I left to go pick up Jake so we could get the rest of the chores done. After that we took apart the pallet pen in the petting zoo because we have a special delivery coming tomorrow. We also caught Jack the little donkey who does not lead AT ALL because he and Shadow are going to winter with a volunteer of ours Erika, so they can stay nice and warm in her barn all winter. We are sure going to miss the two of them, but they’ll be back in the spring. Jake and Shelley left with the two of them to pick up Max, Autumn and Honey at their foster home as they are going to spend the winter at Cook’s Creek Equestrian so they can also stay nice and warm in the barn.  All 5 of them will return in the spring. You may wonder why these 5 get to go get pampered for the winter, well it’s because they have wonderful fosters who are supporting their expenses at these facilities. We are hoping next year to get a nice big grant to cover the cost of a barn so they can all be pampered and spoiled (fingers crossed). After they left I moved some of the small insulated doghouses we use as shelters to make room for our delivery tomorrow and inside one I found one of our female Pekins sitting on four eggs. I had to move it so I am hoping she will go back and sit on them, but we’ll see how it goes.

Sunday was another busy day at the ranch, I left first thing to pick up a flat deck trailer and go pick up our AMAZING birdhouse, built for us by the fine folks at the Manitoba Doghouse Initiative. While I was gone Jake, Tracey, Alana, and Anne took care of the chores, meds and mash for all the horses. They also sorted out all of the loop stuff and fed out a fair bit of it to the critters, always one of the animals’ favorite days at the ranch. They cleaned up and organized a bunch of the items in front of the garage and started to put things in the new shed. Karen was also here doing some more work on the shed, we are getting really close to getting that done. When I got back with the birdhouse, they helped me get it off the trailer, I think we are going to need to get a skid steer in to put it in place.

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