Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Last night J2 and I set out with the simple task of feeding the horses. Easy enough. Well, there are no pickups or tractors, just my car or hook the Team & Wagon. (Ya, I have the wagon because the neighbors borrowed the sleigh...you don't realize how nice the sleigh is until you get beat to death in a wagon.....I would make a horrible pioneer ;) When J2 gets home from school we head to the barn. I'll take this opportunity to remind everyone that J2 is 10 and in 4th grade.

Things are going well. Horses caught. Grain sitting in front of them in the manger. So the task begins of Harnessing the team. Tracking down the collars, where the boys thought was the logical place to put them last time...hmm...I hanging on wall....1 in manger, both found! Let's put Penelope's on first....hmmm.....attemping, attempting.....pulling back....not really thinking this is cool. Did I mention theses stupid collars are heavy!

How about putting their harness's on first. Hear we go.....1st....deciding what harness goes with which horse....hmmm, standing in the stall, imaging driving the team so I can see in my mind which is which ( I have to do the same thing when I'm giving directions, haha) After some thinking and detective work, J2 notices 1 harness has white hair from the white mare Penelope. Ok, we'll start with Dan's. He seems a little more user friendly. Grab the harness......holy crap....this thing is so heavy! Grrr, uggg, insert all other straining sounds.....It takes J2 & I both to pack the harness over & get it on Dan! The memory game then begins....where does that go?......how does this hook up? Between the 2 of us, we convinced each other that we had it done up properly.

At this time I put a call into Regg to see if he could help us hook the horses to feed. Let's try Penelope again. Ok, the collar is to big so it has a pad with it! Hah! I can take it apart & put them on indivisually! We might just get this team hooked yet! Lug the harness over & lub it up on her. Fastening, hooking, tightening.....I'll be! J2 & I got them harnessed just as Regg is pulling in.

Regg, helps up check over things & get the horses out to the wagon. Dang it, Bridles. I knew I was forgetting something. Mental Note: bridal in the barn next time so that if horse escapes, you still have them captured) Ok, Regg & I are holding our horses. Pick up the tongue.....lift......i yi yi! Frozen down! Regg gets it but pretty sure J2 & I would've had to get a chizel. (I would have been pretty disappointed if we'd got harnessed & couldn't get the tongue off the ground) J2 can't reach the so I hook tugs while Regg holds my team. Hooked! I take my reins & step on the wagon. A little lungy, but the boys get everything finished up.

J2 jumps on, Regg lets go of the horses & we are off! Not to wild because Regg made sure he hooked 3 beautiful tires on back for weight! :) Down the road we go! There is no where to turn around so we drive down to Tommy's corner to get our horses aired out a little. What a nice team. Penelope is sure out pulling Dan but I'm not completely sure my reigns are hooked correctly....pretty sure something is a rye. Oh well, we are traveling. In the time it's taken us to get the horses hooked, its cooled down considerably. We promised McKinley (youngest adopted sister) that we would take her to feed. It is getting down right cold so I circle the yard & J2 goes to get her. 4 nice laps around the yard, my horses are handling good! J2 comes out with McKinley & we make another loop. She's such a tough little girl!

Little girls unloaded & off the the feed ground, the gate......the gate....J2 can't get it open by himself & not sure if he can hold the team while I do. Did I mention it's cold! I pull the reins down thru the next slot in the slabs so they are at his level. Tell him to hold them & if he can't let them go into the field cuz they can't run away very far there. Gate open, team stands good! I hop back on & we head out. The horses are just a little hot acting, not wanting to walk so I think....I'lll take you out in the snow a little to slow you down. Wow....I'm not smart...we aren't 10 feet in before I'm real close to stickin my team. We are wagon with 14 bales & 3 tires on back. It's heavy! Can't back up to loosen chain to take tires off....Gid Up! Gid Up.....Aww....they pull back out to feed ground. J2 feeds while I drive. I'm trying to stop every once in awhile to let him regroup but the feed ground is so icey I have to be careful where we stop so we can get going again. J2 has his Christmas knife. Kudos for having your knife kid ...but not that 1! It is about 1 inch knife blade...sharp...but more novelty than function. Stop horses, cut all our bales. We're off again. Feed. Gate. Drop off strings. Back to the barn.

We are regular professionals. I'm sure it only took us 30 minutes to unharness :) When it was all said & done. It took us 3 hours to feed less than 20 head of horses. If you have a hard time following this story....Just picture "Town kids trying to kill snakes" That's exactly how we looked!

(Picture shown is not from last night. It was earlier this winter taken while out with Dad. Penelope is the white mare on the Right hand side)