Friday, January 22, 2010

Trailing to Fields of Gold

Trailing to Fields of Gold

As we all know, Trailing horses is the world’s most funnest thing to EVER! When Dad started calling people to trail on Friday I was pretty excited! Ya….I never got a call. So Friday comes & goes. I ask Dad what he was doing Saturday & He tells me trailing horses. “You might as well come” Ha! The invitation! I play coy… “Hmmm, Maybe I’ll let you know” The next morning arrives & I get a call from lil J2 saying they have “The LEGEND” for me to ride & I better get over there. Well, The Legend just happens to be one of the horses that I bucked at Mud Lake & some other rodeos this summer. Out of 40 some horses…he wasn’t in my 1st 30 choices to ride if I “Had To” gather on something.

Well, Being Pea Hearted & having a lot of “I survived the Hoggan Ranch Self-Perseveration “ I decided to opt out of my favorite pass time & stay home. Well, there is no need to miss a chance for a good photo shoot so I dig out my camera & Oscar & I head up to the Sheep Station. I get there in time to scope out where I needed to be…or so I thought. Somehow it was more like “In time to get lined out by my Dad” I thought it was my idea to go take pictures but by the time got there I was starting to think it was Dads!

A dark line begins to appear on the horizon. The line fades away as the outline of a hundred horses moves down country. Crisp blue skies and fluffy white clouds set the scene for the western romance to unfold.

Here is a brief glimpse into the day.

Horses on the Horizon

Rocky walking the line

Catching a few to take home

Right here, Omar gets the horse heeled & Dad hollers for me to come up to get ahold of the rope so they can get shortened up. I'm bundled up in a big coat, snow pants & have my prize camera in hand. (picture the little kid of a "Christmas Story) So I clumsily flounder down thru the snow trying to get my camera in my coat pocket. Finally getting to the rope, held tight & the Omar gets shortened up. LOL....Omar says, I wasn't sure what you were doing...neither was my horse! I was afraid for your life! .....hahaha....ya, apparently my life was in danger but I was so worried about my camera, I never knew. Ignorance is bliss I guess ;)


Field of Gold - Glorious Belly Deep Grass as far as the eye can see

Even though I went to take pictures I ended up trailing for the 2nd half out to the pasture. Unfortunately for you, none of the boys had cameras so you will not get the pleasure of seeing me rock snow machine pants, pink wild rag & a long stocking hat with strings & a ball on the end of it. I definitely won the fashion contest, hat blowing behind me as I loped thru the snow. Oscar, my cute shaggy pup, (whom you are yet to be formily introduced to) also made his biggest day following behind my horse in the deep snow. He did pretty good.

A special thanks to Omar, Houston, J2 & Dad for the great day!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010



When I moved to Hamer, with in the first night I caught 4 mice…..1 of those was actually caught with by trapping him under a garbage can. Needless to say, I spent the night at my Aunt Nancy’s house. Even though the traps were empty I kept getting the smell of “dead mouse” in my bedroom. I was starting to think I was crazy. Well, come to find out…the mice can get into the heating system & ….wait for it…..there is not 1 not 2 but 3 sticky traps in the vent under my bed & there were 2 dead mice in my heater vent!!!!!!!!!

Well, needless to say…..this was a great motivator to launch an “anti animal campaign” in the house. Can Foam and Steel Wool for the holes, Bar Bait under the trailer, Bug Bombs in the house, Electric Plug Ins to bug the mice (send some sort of annoying sound out that is supposed to detour the mice), and last but not least an arsenal of 20 some good ol’ fashion traps…..this is serious business! J

The cute place that I am renting is on the corner of a field & the house sits right out in the center of that. The weeds hadn’t been cut all year & it was a rodent haven. Even once they swathed, there was still an abundance of inviting places for unwanted company. Time to bring in the troops! My Aunt Crystal got me 3 wild little kittens & I started the task of trying to convince them that my corner should be there new permanent home. Well, I did a pretty good job. 1 was really sweet and always loving up on you. Hmm….wait wait wait….this ends tragically & ends with Me flipping out, yelling at my Dad & his Dogs digging under my shed to get my kittens. This is not the point of the story….& just thinking about it gets me on the fight again.

Moving on, the neighbors had a nice black & white cat that needed a new home. The herd begins again! Not long after, a big Yellow & White stray started visiting every once in awhile. The herd has doubled & leave it to me to have PAINTS!

Oscar is a good dog. He is reprimanded if he harasses the cats. The Black & White will sleep in his Dog House & rub up on him. I can get after Oscar but if the cat puts his head in the dog’s mouth…I can’t cure stupid! In search for a refuge for felines….I brought home a CAT HOUSE! It’s pimp! Hinged door so I can put their milk & cat food inside & reclose it. Once closed, it has an arched door just big enough for the cat’s to get in. It’s awesome! The cats still like to sleep in the dog house but….it’s gotta help right.

Well, after helping Dad all day with the teams (yes, the day mentioned in the last story). We get a phone call that J2 needed to be picked up from a Boy Scouts. He is the last kid left there & she is just going to take him to her house until I can pick him up. I get there & they ask if I want another Cat. Wait, back up…..I need to set the scene a little. As you drive up the road to the house there is a sign that says “Forget the Dogs. Beware of the Kids!” The youngest boys are two of the toughest kids I’ve ever seen in my entire life…..seriously…Cowboy Kid…. Country Raised…TOUGH! Well, 1 of them catches the cat for me & says “She bites” Not 5 seconds later the other kid comes out & says….Oh she’s mean! She bites! Wow!!! (these kids saying she is mean….ahhh, not a good sign!!!) I’m holding the cat now….ahhhh! Tracy gets a box so we can put the Cat inside long enough to get it home. Cat in. Duct tape, duct tape & more duct tape….safety 1st J

J2 & I get into the car. The door is barely closed on the car & J2 is screaming “If that cats gets loose….Just Let Me Jump” ….as he is clinging to the passenger side door! I’m reassuring him that he’s not jumping out & it will be fine. We used duct tape! Meanwhile the cat is violently thrashing around in the box. The road to their house is probably ½ mile long. We aren’t even half way down it when….mrrrrowwww mrowww shriek roll…AHH!!!! I head, I see a head! AWWWW! The killer cat is loose in the back seat! J2 is screaming & jerking on his door handles! Thank you for Child Locks!!! Ok, ok, he’ll stay in the back….I no more say this & he is on the prowl! Headed straight for the front seat via the console & right in the middle of J2 & I! I don’t want a Crazy Cat to be bouncing off the walls of my car. I grab him, kindly but firmly. Oh wow, screaming little brother, Cute shaggy puppy & biting mean cat all in the front seat of my Pontiac G6! Snowy roads ….& smiling “nice kitty, nice kitty”! Oh wow, we finally made it home! Cat in hand, J2 is out the door before I even come to a complete stop! Aww, a little warm milk & straight to the CAT HOUSE! That’s right, we all survived & I now have THREE Kitty Cats for my CAT HOUSE !

Lol….ya, I just spent minutes of your life talking about a CAT HOUSE but if you can visualize J2 clinging to the window trying to get away from the cat….It’s all worth it!

You just never know where these Gypsy Trails will take you!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

TEAM WORK ~ January 2010

TEAM WORK: Dad has been hooking teams of horses this winter to get ready to feed elk with. Some for the very 1st times. We used to hook horses all the time when I was young but….then I went to college….moved away….& basically forgot everything I’ve ever know J Now, J2 (the 10 year old) is telling me what to do. Hahaha…ya, I know….it’s humorous.

Well, Dad invited me over yesterday to help him hook some horses. …..seems real nice like quality father daughter bonding time……really….he just can’t hook them by himself. It’s a good trade. He gets a little help….I’m realistic…I’m not much better than no help. Anyway, I get to learn how to hook the teams again. The horses he has now are pretty nice. That being said….I think anyone of them would paw you on the head if you looked at them wrong.

The 1st set of horses hooked & ready to go. Runners are frozen down & Dad has to loosen them. Dad hands me the reigns & we’re off! It’s a little tough in the yard & the horses have to dig a little bit. A little riled up….& a herd of Dogs barking & biting at the teams head’s…..Hoo Waa! It’s a little wild…mainly cuz my driving isn’t that great ;) We blow left…look out borrow ditch…...right…another ditch….Barbwire fence straight ahead…..a little left…I finally get them shot across the road into a field & down the trail we go. About half way around the field they were working together pretty good. About that time Dad mentions that…He was a little curious as to what way I was trying to go when I left the yard. J We finish our loop & head back to the house. Load a few bales to go feed. I hop in J2’s plastic sled dragging behind the sleigh & play a fun little game of picking up strings while Dad works with the team on side passing. When we head back to the barn I ask Dad if he was really worried when we left the yard? He says “No, I was worried I would have taken the reigns”

It went well. My driving improved a lot…I thought. For the next set of horses I call Mckell & Ellie to see if they want to go sledding behind the team. Good times to be had to all…right ;) Well, we get them hooked. One of these horses has only been hooked 1 other time. He was a little more difficult but we got everything done up & were ready to head out again. McKell & Ellie positioned in a good spot to hold on. I’m at the reigns & we’re off……in a blaze of fire! Holy Crap! Horses blowing everywhere! Dogs Barking! Dogs Biting! Screaming at Dogs to get out! I’m pulling every which way put together! Dad’s yelling DRIVE! Left….Right….iy Yi Yi! Too much every direction….& way to fast! Dad is yelling to give him the reigns….oh ya….that’s not a good sign…. ! By the time he gets the reigns we are in the middle of the road….close to jack knifed & 1 horse down. Yikes…! Mckell….. “How did I let you talk me into this” I’m trying to act real calm….like oh, It’s fine….as I am screaming at the dogs to get out & trying to gather up the strings which are now scattered all over & under the down the team. Whew…we get everything straight & are off again. I run & jump on the sled. Dad gets us back out of the yard & headed down the road at a high rate of speed. He gets them changed over into the field at the next gate. (To be quite honest, it is pretty impressive how well he handles the reigns…but I don’t tell him that ;) I take the reins & out around the field we go. They worked well. The new horse was soft so he got aired out pretty soon. They were good enough that I gave Dad back the reigns & Ellie & I headed back to the sled to have some serious fun!

I drive that a little better….lol….mainly cuz I only had to keep Ellie & I in the sled. I kneeled & Ellie sat on my lap. We had a blast….tucked sagebrush…..rode the waves (aka…dips in the trail)….laughed until we were silly & only got bucked off a few times J

All in all, it was a great day! More Hamer Highlights coming soon :)

p.s......Anyone in search of a unique arm work out....just let horses pull on you for a few muscles you didnt even know existed...oh wait...maybe that was the problem in the 1st place :)