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

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Sometimes There Is Beauty, If You Look

Of course you need to be up early enough!

A beautiful start to a cold day. Clear skies mean cold temperatures in my part of the world. It's nice to see the sun, so I will stow the complaining until January, when the doldrums really set in.

We had a lot of snow fall over the Christmas holiday so we were literally snowed in. We finally became totally plowed yesterday. It's been a long time since I have seen such enormous piles of snow. Howard is beside himself with joy!

Because of all the snow our family lunch was postponed until tomorrow. We are a small group, five including my aged parents. My son, being a new homeowner, is preparing lunch at his home in Minneapolis, while we pick up grandma and very grumpy and infirm grandpa. Grandpa may not be making many more visits, so although he would rather stay home we are pushing him out the door, at least one more time. My mother should not be caring for him, but they will not listen. It took a long time, but I am now in the position of attempting to influence my parent's decisions. I can tell you it is not going well.

Although cold, the day is beautiful and the yard is plowed. Sometimes you have to take the good you get and call it good enough. 

Saturday, December 26, 2009

White Horses

The Lipizzans of the Spanish Riding School in Austria. I fell in love with these horses as a teenager and never thought I would ever have one. Well I don't, but I do have two cross-breds by Conversano II Aloha II, a stallion owned by my very accomplished former trainer who left us for Florida and a man! Lou earned a USDF Gold Medal at Grand Prix a few years ago. Ari would be a Grand Prix horse if I still had a trainer like Jean. But Ari and Ben are a source of wonder and pride for me, regardless.

Enjoy the dance.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Caritas, Gaudium, Pax

From the farm to the world, we wish you charity, hope and peace.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme

...... are some of the ingredients in the stock I made this morning,

which became the soup we had for lunch. Mark was hungry, so the little bit of schmaltz in the stock was left, he didn't want to wait for the stock to cool. It adds flavor, so we will ignore what else it adds!

Soup seemed like a good idea because we had this,

and this overnight. More to come. At least the temperature is moderate and the snow is certainly pretty.

I had a glass of wine with lunch and a cookie for the finish. I think I must be feeling festive. Don't let it get around, I have a reputation to maintain.

Merry, Merry everyone.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Have a Cookie

........ you'll feel better. Nothing like a warm cookie and a nice cup of tea to make your troubles disappear for a time. I know because I tested the theory and it worked.

Monday, December 21, 2009

For Some There Is Peace.... There Is Plenty

An early, foggy winter morning in the mare's pasture.

Friday, December 18, 2009

A Month In A Life

What I have been doing over the past month and a half. With an interruption for a couple of weeks to care for the stallions after their brain surgery. 

This stuff has been in my kitchen and bedroom for what seems to be forever. It's tough to run a farm and paint an interior of a house. And I can tell you without doubt now, I'm not what I used to be! I feel like I've been run over by a truck. I do believe I took on a bit too much, but it seemed reasonable when I decided to do it.

I realized by the time I got to this counter/cabinet space that I don't need to paint here. I've ordered tin tiles to place here. Another project! There is no holiday decorating or baking happening at my home this year.

I got my bedroom painted, but still don't have the curtains up. The kitchen got painted green by default because I had a full gallon left over from painting my bedroom. I used to say paint is cheap, but not anymore. So that full gallon went to paint another room. Not my first choice, but paint isn't cheap!

I am also dealing with a seriously lame mare. She has been on bute and stall rest for two weeks. I have not been able to make the call to end this. She is not showing pain when left in, but she has not been able to walk. The past two days have been marginally better, giving me a little burst of hope. I should have just put her down, but she is a kind old lady who gave me many foals over the years. She is the dam of my Lipizzan cross, Ari. She is also a very good patient, taking her confinement with patient grace.

She is old, but I have great affection for her and as long as she isn't suffering serious pain I will give her some time to heal, if she can. My vet thinks she may have fractured her right shoulder but he isn't sure. So I'll give her some time. Give Sun Spot a little positive thought if you can.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter Dawn

A cold dawn in Minnesota. Winter fell upon us seemingly overnight. I went to bed on a nice fall day and awoke in the middle of winter. As I am not Rip Van Winkle I think we had a sharp change in weather.

So the struggle begins. There are many markers which tell me my body is aging and winter is one of them. It is becoming increasingly difficult trudging through the snow and facing the cutting wind. When winter decided to come, it came with arctic air. Yippee.

I have been absent from my computer for awhile. I have been in a bit of a funk and find I don't have much to say, so I think it best to say nothing, on my blog and others. The dawn moon and the frigid air seemed worthy of a moment of my time though.

Enjoy your day good people.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A Seemingly Endless Cycle

It is well war is so terrible - otherwise we would grow too fond of it.
Robert E. Lee

My entire life we have had one war or another. I'm weary. But our leaders are not, so here we go, escalating the conflict in Afghanistan.

Somehow I think the atmosphere of Washington D.C. stifles reasoned thought. No one has been successful in that region, going all the way back to Alexander. Believing additional soldiers will turn an area of rival tribes into a cohesive country we can have treaties and diplomacy with is as reasonable as believing reindeer really do fly.

More lives, more money and probably no way to pay other than borrowing (Americans have decided we don't believe in taxation for anything. The nation is on a very large Chinese credit card). I imagine we will be bogged down there for years to come.

Which means we will continue the battle domestically. We don't have money to care for our population or our infrastructure. We lack the political will to do something about it. We are in a decline, but don't know it. Because we have military might we become confused. We believe we are powerful. We are. We can blow up the earth a hundred times over. But we can't stop 45,000 people dying each year because they don't have insurance and therefore lack access to medical care.

We close schools, let go police, allow roads and bridges to crumble. Universities raise tuition to a level that keeps large segments of the population off their campuses. We have created a "Do you want fries with that" economy. But we can borrow money and fight wars. While we have 38 million people on food stamps.

So President Obama has just bought himself a war. The mess is now his to own. He will, I believe, regret it. I know I do.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


I am not able to follow any blogs. I get a message telling me following is forbidden with this server. Does anyone know what has happened?

Going to the help center is useless and contacting a real person impossible.

Thanks for any help I can get.

OK, I copied the message.


You don't have permission to access /friendconnect/settings/simpleSave on this server.

*An edit to clarify. I can follow blogs I already have on my list but I am unable to add any others. When I click on to follow a blog, the above is the error message.

I hate the lack of access to help.

Comes The Season

It's coming. Tomorrow. We don't want to believe it, but it's on its way. Winter.

It is December 1st and we will be 45 degrees today. Ah, bliss! Tomorrow the hammer drops and we enter winter. Seemingly for the duration. I've allowed myself the luxury of believing this is real. I feel somewhat betrayed by the weather guy. How dare he burst my well-tended bubble of delusion?

So on this last beautiful day I will once again repair the front of Sophie and Iris' shed (so they can tear it down again) and do the remaining final touches that have been put off while I dwelled in my bubble. And brace for the cold blustery day ahead. And ahead......

Some snow would be nice. In the beginning of winter it is nice to see snow. I have always felt a lift from the first snowfall. When you keep horses snow is actually your friend in a frozen climate. Their tootsies don't care for the frozen ground.

Yet as I look out my window I see a large field of corn awaiting the combine. The grass is still green. So there have been contributors to my delusion.