Everything sublime is as difficult as it is rare. Baruch Spinoza

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Julochka Asks

julochka asked on her blog a couple of days ago, who would like to be interviewed by her. No set questions and the responses to be posted on her blog, with the author posting to their own if they wish. She got A LOT of response, so she will be posting one a day until done. Check it out, as there are many people participating in this. It should be fun!

1.  the very best horse you ever had...
I have several favorites, but other than the first I had as a child, I have to say the gray Arabian gelding, Shaka. He was a willful, prideful animal who taught me I am in charge only if I am respectful and if I ask politely. And then I am granted an equal partnership at best. A little humility is good for a person. I think more people would benefit from a Shaka in their lives!

2.  you must share the recipe for your fabulous white sangria.

If I must! I like to use citrus, but apples, cherries, etc.
can be used as well.

cut into thin slices and place in 4 qt pitcher:
3 oranges
3 lemons
3 limes
Add to pitcher:
Peel and quarter 4-5 peaches or nectarines
Dice about 1 cup of fresh pineapple
About 1 pint of strawberries
Fold in about 1/2 cup of sugar (to your taste) and allow to macerate for an hour or so.
Pour 3 bottles of chilled dry white wine and about a half cup of brandy or cognac.
Cover and chill for at least 3-4 hours. I let it sit
overnight. The sangria in the photo was made with cherries. I don't like it as well.

3.  if you could never watch t.v. ever again, would you miss it? and what would you miss?

Initially, yes. But I don't watch a lot of TV as it is. I would miss the noise in the background I think. The idea of it bothers me more than the actual doing of it would. I believe that is so.

4.  what is the most outlandish thing someone requested in your horse business? (if you can tell without naming names.)

Oh you know the business! Mostly it's just been a series of egocentric requests from boarders. Everyone always thinks they are the only person with a horse. It was interesting to consider this while I cared for 36 horses and someone would want me to spend the time grazing their horse for 15 minutes, with incremental increases each day to ease the beast onto pasture. I had nothing else to do.

I had someone rewrite my boarding contract to suit her wishes. Ya, that will work.

I was asked by someone I know to allow a stranger to me (and a relatively inexperienced person) to come out and ride my Lipizzan crosses so this person could experience baroque horses. Put your dime in the slot and ride the pony. I had to give her credit for the chutzpah. I said 'no'.

My breeding clients were mostly reasonable people and buyers are what they are. But boarders are a whole different breed of cat. Something happens within the brain when a person (woman) gets a horse. This is a broad brush statement and doesn't apply across the board, but I'm telling you.... After twenty years in the business I have probably heard and seen it. I will say the trend that has come up in recent years to take a horse off the farm on trial is something I consider a bold request. But it has become commonplace.

5.  if you could be a presidential advisor, what would you advise?

Get a spine. Or at least a set of principles. People who straddle the fence end up with a sore groin and little else.

6.  the best thing about living in the country?
No close neighbors.

7.  the worst thing about living in the country?

No close neighbors!

I live in a politically conservative part of the state. It can be tough to be surrounded by Tea Party types. So I guess my answer is, I am somewhat isolated. I guess this is why I started reading blogs.

8.  what do you do about the flies? (we have a serious fly problem around here and i had totally forgotten about that.)
Google images
I hate to say this, but I have never found a good solution. It is part of the bargain. Some years are worse than others and this has been an awful year for the buggers. In the barn I am very low tech:  fly strips! I do put fly masks on the horses. It is not much, but it does keep them out of their eyes. I shy away from chemicals, so the only other thing I can suggest is a good fly swatter.

9.  if you could travel anywhere (and not worry about the horses), where would you go?
Google Images
This is a tough question for me, as I have been so narrow in my scope for so long I hardly consider something like this anymore. A trip to Saint Paul has become an adventure for me. I would like to go to France for the food, Italy for the countryside. Ireland because my mother talks of it so much. I am no longer interested in far flung and exotic. Comfort. Food. Culture. I'd be pleased to go to Denmark. Truth be told, I'd be pleased to go to Des Moines!

10. comfort food?

Yes, please. Fried chicken and mashed potatoes with gravy. Anything baked that contains butter and sugar. You cannot live in a cold climate and not appreciate the starch and fat of comfort food. It's just not sane.


  1. I loved this, Sandra!!

    nice to know you better.

    and you made me laugh out loud with the neighbour answers. Isn't it just the truth. Lately the initial charm of suburbia is wearing thin... but when I make a list of pro /con, I realize how deeply blessed we are to have a community here. The grass isn't always greener and all that....

    love your politician advice. I am kind of a fence sitter, ( see I couldn' t even commit to that) , but my husband isn't so as a team we do okay with life stuff.

  2. oh, and I have nothing to compare your business with the few ventures I've undertaken , some sewing, cooking , a garden maintenance business. But I think when the business is a service , you open yourself up to strange relationships. I was constantly appalled at some of the things my gardening clients asked of me or assumed or expected. I have a hard time playing quiet cleaning lady to the more well off lazier types.

  3. Funny, none of your answers surprised me. I was totally surprised, however, to learn you once boarded horses and put up with their people. I'd have liked to have been a fly on the wall for some of those conversations!

    Nice to know you (a little better!)

  4. And this, m'dear, is why you should never have given up on awards! lol I always love the posts you do about yourself. Like watching a ticking bomb really. Mesmerizing while you wait for the funny explosion. *snort* Your insights into the horsey community have me rolling on the floor & I know nothing about horses! Thanks, Sandra! ♥

  5. I love this horse! Beautiful!
    Great post!

  6. Hey everyone. I enjoyed answering julochka's questions. I haven't had much to say lately so she gave me something to do. :)

  7. I just stopped over after reading your interview with Julochka. Delightful to make your acquaintance! (I've lived in upstate NY for over 30 years now, but trips back to Des Moines and St. Paul are still a treat for me as well.)


I really appreciate the concept and sentiment behind awards, but I cannot participate in them anymore. I have too may and I have not got the time to devote to participating properly. To all who have honored me, I am grateful but I don't have seven more things to tell anyone about myself! And I'm a terrible passer-oner.