Jun 28, 2013


In my last post about Coal (who is comfortably laying at my feet at this very moment), I mentioned a new name. Jeffrey. Just wait until you see this ball of cuteness.

There was an ad posted on facebook about two orange kitties that needed homes. They were cute and Linsey wanted a new kitty. We went a few days later to get one, but when we got to the house there were still two. There was no food and no water. How could we take one and leave the other?

 The other was to be mine.

I would like to say that we (Sister and I) saved Jeffrey (and Dennis who is Linsey's- shown below).

We brought them home and the rest is a fairy tale.

Jeffrey is the cutest thing ever. I think dad was all NO more cats, but then Dottie fell in love. Then dad fell in love with Dottie being preoccupied. hah!

He is now about 17 weeks old and is a spitfire of a kitty!

The special thing about Jeffrey is that once we leave home headed toward the nursing home something amazing happens. The second we pull onto nursing home road he conks OUT. I mean, out cold. He is the best pet therapy cat I have ever seen. It's like he knows what he is there for and just lays out. It is so neat!

On the way to see the old folks!

So far, Jeffrey has fit in well on the farm! He's a little skiddish, so I don't foresee him going outside anytime soon, but he and Coal are finally getting along. Coal loves him being here because he gets to eat regular kitten food instead of his urinary tract food.

Jeffrey already knows his name. He can be scratching on something and I say Jeffrey in a plain tone of voice and he just stops and turns his head... me?!  So cute.

More Jeffrey updates coming soon! I'm sure he will find some other great hobbies to take up in the next couple of weeks :)

May 7, 2013


One of the most dreaded words of my life... 'missing'.

Coal kitty usually goes on farm vacation when I am out of town, but last weekend when I returned on Sunday, he did not. I wasn't worried the first day, but Tuesday morning when he wasn't back I got really worried.

I wrote out some make shift missing signs that morning before I left for school. I stopped in the neighborhood that backs up to the east side of our farm and taped the signs on the two stop signs at each entrance. "MISSING Black Cat- Coal Kitty" was in bold black letters with my name and phone number on the bottom.

I wish I could have written a whole paragraph for everyone to read, but that is just unreasonable. "Black cat" is an insult to Coal kitty... he is more than just any black cat. He is my black cat, my study partner, my Auburn travel buddy, and my cuddle buddy at night. As far as I'm concerned, he has a pre-veterinary degree and a bachelors in nursing! Smartest kitty I know.
I got Coal Kitty on May 23, 2008. He was a little itty bitty kitty that an older lady brought into the vet that I was working for that summer along with his two siblings and mother. "Euthanize them", she said. I begged my vet to let me take them. He called the lady and she said that was fine if they were found homes and she ended up coming back for the mother cat. I gave the other two kittens away after picking out which one I wanted to keep for myself. I chose Coal because he licked my ear, just like my old cat Zorro use to do.

Coal Kitty and Lola Belle

Coal is special to me for many many reasons, but one of the main reasons is that I got Coal the week I met Josh. May 19th was my first day working that summer. I had worked many summers before that, but I had never worked with the new guy. Coal Kitty has been around the same amount of time that Josh has and that is just special to me. Coal was our first child. Josh tries to claim him because "he's the best cat in the world", but he knows he is mine!

After Coal went missing, I was heartbroken that I couldn't look for my Coal Kitty. I was in my last week of nursing school and I was supposed to be at school Mon-Thurs from 9-4 for our Kaplan review for the NCLEX. What a great week to go missing, Coal kitty. Not only did I have to be there at 9, remember I live one hour away from school. 8-5.

I had some WONDERFUL neighbors text me, message me on FB, and call me telling me that they were looking for Coal kitty, keeping an eye out for him, and calling him. No one ever called regarding seeing Coal Kitty in the neighborhood.

On Tuesday when I got home from school I saddled up Flint and went out to look for Coal. I had come across him before while riding and I was sure I was going to be able to find him. I started on our farm and moved into the neighborhood. I talked to a few of the residents and they had not seen him. I looked for 2 hours and saw no signs of Coal Kitty. I don't know how many times in one hour I walked to the front door to look for Coal. I would check all three rocking chairs and the swing, jiggle the door handle to see if he would come when he heard that... but no Coal kitty.

On Wednesday after school I saddled up SoBe and headed out again. I went from looking for a black cat running across fields or roads to looking for remains of a black cat. Then I thought, maybe he got in a tree, he always climbs trees in a second if he feels threatened. Coal kitty is very savvy when he comes to being outside... So I started looking in the trees. I checked every tree in the horse pasture where I know a fox has taken up residence. No kitty. I rode through the neighborhood and talked to the same man about Coal. He hadn't seen him... thank goodness because his house was the absolute farthest away from mine. I concluded after this day that something got Coal and drug him off into the woods. It wasn't looking promising with this being the second cat to have gone missing in 6 weeks. Poor Cookie has been missing for a while, but we think someone has her. She has gone missing before and came back smelling like someone's house... I think she has someone that lets her in their house!

On Thursday after school, I walked out to the horse pasture and called him. At this point I could hardly call him without starting to cry. I was so angry that my kitty was gone. I just prayed and prayed that he would come back to life and come home. I was sure he had been eaten by a coyote or a fox.

On Thursday night around 10:45 I was sitting on the couch with my mom watching TV. I heard a bang on one of the windows in our den and jumped up to check on Jeffrey. (That's another story... next blog!). I was afraid that Tug or Latch may have run into the window chasing Jeffrey so I jumped up to check on him and flipped on the light... there was Coal Kitty sitting on the back deck. I scooped that cat up so fast. I was SO happy to have my kitty back. It was almost like a hallucination. I couldn't believe he was back after being gone 6 days.

Coal kitty must have had a traumatic week, because he refuses to go outside. If he does, I can hardly get him to move from one spot. He just meows and meows and begs to go back inside pretty quickly. I guess I will never know what happened to my Coal kitty, but I'm glad he is home! I was able to enjoy graduation from nursing school and not worry about Coal!

Mar 27, 2013

Inside my groom box!

Are you wondering what a groom box is? Most of you know, but there are many people that follow my blog that know NOTHING about horses! So I am going to tell you what is in mine and what I use it for! 

Basically, this is every horse person's best friend, well one of them. It carries everything I need for when I am about to go ride or just playing around with my horses. There are many more things that I need that I keep in a different box that I will cover another day- That includes salves, bandages, cleansing agents... This groom box is just the basics of horse care! 

Groom boxes are equivalent to a tool belt for construction people and police.
It's like a hairdresser having scissors, hair dryers, straighteners, curling irons, shampoo and conditioner.

It's like my other purse!

This is my groom box! I love it. 
 So, you can see a few things at first glance. Brushes and spray stuff- but which is which and what is what!?
What's the pink bottle? Whats all those handles?! 
I'm about to answer all your questions. I hope. 

This is a curry comb. I love a curry comb, but I hate a curry comb. Sometimes it does such a good job brushing the horse that you can't get all the dirt off of their coat. This brush is used in a circular motion all over the horses body. It brings the dirt to the surface so you can brush the dirt off with another type of brush. I mostly use this brush when they are shedding their winter coats. It's so easy and all the dirt gathers in the grooves... then you just knock it on the bottom of your boot and it all falls off!

These are dandy brushes, or 'stiff' brushes. These brushes can be used on their coats and on their manes and tails. After currying a horse, the dandy can be used to remove most of the dirt. I also use the stiff brushes when I trim their hooves to get all the dirt off of their hooves. This keeps my tools from becoming dull.
 I have actually had the purple brush (and the teal brush below) since I was at least 12! My Uncle Vaughn's old girlfriend, Tiffany, gave Linsey and me some groom box sets when we were younger for Christmas one year! I love those two brushes!

  These are soft brushes. The one on the top left is my absolute favorite brush. It is made of horse hair so it just works good! These brushes are the 'finishing' brush and make the coat real shiny! Most of the time this is the only brush I will use. I probably should start currying more because that does help the skin to produce their natural oils. I just like my horse to look clean and not have a static-y coat with lots of dirt showing!

This little dude is a face brush. It's small and soft, also made of horse hair, used to brush their face and around their eyes. Horses have sensitive skin, especially on their face, so gentle is the way to go! 

I included this photo to show you how small the face brush is compared to a normal brush. My two favorite brushes. Also, these two brushes were two of my first brushes I bought from Horsetown in Locust Grove more than 10 years ago. I specifically remember my daddy saying after I bought them "you won't ever be able to keep up with those! They're going to get lost in the yard somewhere and you won't ever see them again!" Ah hem! ;)

This spray bottle contains showsheen. This is the best stuff known to man. It is a detangler and leave in conditioner for their manes and tails. I always end up using this right before I ride and then I can't hold onto the reins! Slippery stuff!

And then when you have a groom box, all your labels look like this! I should just rip it off...

Horses have hair just like people, so my horses have a brush that looks just like mine! I use this to brush out their mane

Another one of those original brushes that I bought up at Horsetown! I just keep this mane and tail brush around because it is different and old!

This was a recent edition to my groom box. I love braiding my horses manes and tails. It reminds me of the days that I use to show and it also helps the horses mane to grow longer! Good addition.

This guy has been around quite awhile! I don't use it as often as I should, but maybe I will start. It is a conditioner for their hooves. You can use the brush to paint it on the outside wall and on the sole of the hoof. It helps prevent cracks by moisturizing, but also prevents fungus and keeps other yucky stuff out! 

This is a hoof pick. It is pretty self explanatory I think, but it is used to get the dirt out of their hooves! 

These are my knives for trimming. I use these to take sole off and to trim their frogs. Horses have frogs?! Yes! It's part of their hoof. It's the V that you see when you pick up a horses hoof. 

I love how it says 'The Knife' like it is is sacred or something! This knife came in a pack with my nippers and file that my dad used when we had Classic, SoBe and Sassy's mom. It's part of my original tool set and I will always hold them dear to me! Is that weird? I don't really care either way!

My nippers!! I love these nippers. They are wonderful and we get along so well. Trimming toes and heels during the hoof trimming process is what we do! Most people don't do their own farrier work. I am fortunate enough to be educated on it, so I can do a decent job! Believe it or not... farrier work is expensive. I save exactly $150 every 6 weeks by doing my own horses hooves. 52 weeks in a year, so horses get their hooves done 8-9 times a year... I save about $1200! WOW! I even just realized how much that is... and that doesn't include my donkey. I love being a skilled horse owner!

Along with nippers, you need a rasp! I love my rasp. It could be sharper, but it gets the job done for me and my 5 horses and donkey! This is used to file down the hoof like a fingernail file. You also use this to level the foot up and make sure their hoof is flat and not slanted. Horses don't like wearing high heels!

A rasp has a rough side and a smooth side. The rough side takes off more hoof and the smooth side finishes off the job and rounds things off. 

Up next. Sunscreen! All those white noses need protection. I don't think this SPF is high enough, but this was something I grabbed during this summer for a quick fix. I also use this for me! I don't want to get burnt shoulders when I ride in a tank. 

SWAT is amazing. It is a fly repellent salve that can be used anywhere! I put it around their eyes, on their ears and in their wounds. I love it! I always have to make sure I buy the clear formula as shown.... otherwise I may accidentally pick up the original formula and it is BRIGHT pink. It's so cute having a pink horse, but it is helpful to know if it has washed off or is still on their body.

This was my most recent addition. Thrush Buster and cotton balls.  Thrush is a bacterial infection that can occur in horses frogs. It is very smelly and puts off a black discharge. A few of my horses have thrush so we have been bustin' it up with this stuff! The cotton balls can be used to stuff into the sulcus to hold the medicine in a little longer! The sulcus is the groove in the hooves that make up the outside of the V!

There are some things that I don't currently have in my groom box that I wish I did, but for now I have everything I need! I am missing a grooming stone and bot brush. I have a bot brush (worm eggs that flies lay on their leg hairs in which they get in their mouth when they scratch their legs with their teeth- the eggs travel through the horse and make worms.) but I want a grooming block. I plan on ordering one the next time I order something! 

That is my groom box!! Next we will do the tack room or my medicine cabinet!

Any questions are welcomed! 

PS. did anyone wonder if I swept the floor when I was done taking all these pictures?!? I did! :)

Mar 11, 2013

BIG future!

This past weekend I made the trek to Athens to see my beloved Joshua! It was a great weekend and we got to spend lots and lots of time together after being apart for 2 weeks. (I know, it's not that long, but it is!)

Rewind to Friday, I am sitting at work, and Josh tweets a picture of a baby clydesdale. OH MY GOSH. Where did this come from!! What is he doing!!

He called me a few short minutes later and said he was on his way home from work. I said, excuse me no you're not you just left a baby clydesdale! He acted like he didn't know what I was talking about and soon fessed up about cheating on his beloved SoBe.  He had gone to the clydesdale farm on business and said he would text the owner to see if he could bring me out. She said yes and I died and went to heaven right then and there!

The next day, which didn't come soon enough, Josh took me to the local Clydesdale farm.... that was a HUGE mistake. Definitely not a mistake for my heart, but for Josh and my bank account....

We pulled into the gates and I just squealed! Everyone knows I love all horses and I looove my tennessee walkers, but I LOVE Clydes. They are so majestic and giant! I love all things giant. As we were pulling into the gates there were 4 Clydesdales on my left... 3 on my right, then 3 mares with foals on the next left, then another mare and foal on my right! I was already in heaven just driving by them.

We finally pulled up next to the barn after passing 4 pastures full of Clydes. We met up with the owner, Shannon. I had the pleasure of meeting her and her husband once before in Perry at the Clydesdale show at the Georgia National Fair. I even stayed around to watch them in Unicorn show.

Shannon showed us around and introduced us to all of her clydes from the stallion, to the mares, to the geldings, to the 2 month old babies and some yearlings. I wanted to squeeze every single one of those horses. I did squeeze some of them and they were the sweetest things.

You know I didn't leave that place without taking pictures!!

The Geldings- Bubba, Arthur, and Teeny

Flossy and her foal, Freddy

The stallion they have on site, Master

May, due to foal in April

The mares with all their precious babies!

Baby Freddy. So cute!

Lucya, a coming two year old that is already familiar with the show ring!
This girl is GORGEOUS.

One of the beautiful broodmares

Sully and his mama!

The yearlings with the geldings in the background!


Another of the precious yearlings!

My favorite yearling! Jagger

Me and Jagger! 
I was really interested in this one, but they are going to hold onto him and see how he turns out! His sire has passed so he is one of the last. 

My personal favorite. Baby Clydesdale booties!

Shannon has two horses for sale, one mare and one gelding, that I am interested in. I really would like a gelding, but the mare is amazingly beautiful. Her name is Nala and she is in foal for April. Her price is great for getting two clydes, but I just don't have it right now!

Shannon was a great host and I have counted the days until I can go back and visit. Shannon even wrote me back and said that I could come work with Nala! So excited!

I can't wait until I have a Clyde of my own! It has been a dream of mine for a while now and I have a feeling it may just come true this year! Here's to a BIG future!! :)