Friday, July 27, 2012

Vet, Bath, then Farrier for Twila Merrill

Thursday Dr. Kate came over to draw a Coggins and give Twila her shots. Then I decided that is was so hot and Twila and Sadie Mae were so yucky that I gave them both a bath. Twila was a good girl for it all!
My neighbor Larry came down, he is close to 70 and has had Mules, Draft Horses and Donkeys his whole life.
It was so cute to watch Larry and Twila have a conversation.  I could not understand what he was telling her, but she loved it.  They also shared a cute, head to head snuggle!
Farrier coming out tomorrow to put shoes on her. I hope it will help her tender feet, then we can ride more often!

Great Fun at Grayson Highlands!

I don't think I have laughed that much in a long time! Had a great trip to Grayson Highlands with the Carolina Mule Association, this year. Tara and I got up there on Tuesday and spend the afternoon setting up camp and resting with my friend Barry. 

Wednesday I got to sleep in some because I was feeling sick with a cough and cold, but the three of us still managed to get in a relaxing five hour ride.

Thursday we rode out with Jays group and rode up Wilson Creek to the Bear Pen for another five hour loop. Each night it got cool and we had a great camp fire! The weather each day threatened to storm on us but it never did rain too much. So lucky in that respect. I then got Tara sick! Sorry Tara!

On Friday I rode with a small group of eight and we stayed out for nine hours. As we rode to The Saddle we watched a cloud come over the divide between the two peaks, soon we were riding up into that cloud. We then rode over the back of the hill and down into the woods and out of the cloud. We came out on a back country road and then rode back up through a Christmas Tree Farm. It was a long climb but Seven handled it really well. It was so pretty at the top and we stopped to take lots of photos! On the rocks in the trees near the top we spotted a Bob Cat who, had apparently been sitting and watching us climb the whole hill! He was amazing looking as he got up and slowly sauntered away from us. After goofing off and resting the mules we had more climbing to do, and then the ride home! What a day, but it really did not seem long, because we were having so much fun!

Saturday was the big group ride day. We broke into two groups and then met up again at Rhododendron Gap. We ended up with 26 mules in the group! I got a chance to pull over and video tape everyone going by! We lunched at The Scales and then 11 of us broke off for a longer ride. That night we had a big pot luck dinner over and Jay and Annette's place and then a CMA board/member meeting.

Sunday Tara and I rode out with a few other for about 4 hours. We rode a loop and had lunch and ice cream at the Camp Store. A nice easy ride to finish off our trip!

I was so proud of Seven on this trip. Not only did he never tire out but he did not spook at anything. He put up with all my jackets, rain coats, etc being moved around on him. Best of all he worked all those scary, very hard to work gates, even helping me hold them open for the whole group to go through. Something that he did not have the confidence to do just a few short years ago!
Plus he got me home safe!
Thank You Seven! 

Link to the Movie I made from the trip:
 Small Group coming in from the scales.
In a Cloud on The Saddle! 

 Seven grazing at Lunch.
Top of the Christmas Tree Climb! So beautiful!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Welcome Twila Merrill

I was offered a wonderful Donkey in need of a home. My friend gave her to me after needing to cut down to just a few head of equine. I have known about this donkey and really liked her for a while so when he asked me if I would like he, I said "YES!"  Debbie went with me the next day and we picked her up. She was just given a bath the day before but was still pretty hairy! We was better looking than I remembered and got right on the trailer when asked!  She is 8-9 years old, 14.1 hands and broke to ride and maybe to drive too! 
When we got home Seven and Navarre were excited to see the new arrival. Especially Navarre! She hung out in the side paddock till evening, just walking around and checking things out. Then when it cooled off I turned her out with everyone. Navarre and Seven greeted her and then went back to their hay. Sadie acted a little Jealous and ran her off a few time but nothing mad. 
I let her settle in for a day or two and then got the clipper out! She had a bunch of long white hair on her belly and a ton under her chin. She stood well for getting clipped and looked like she had a make over once I got done with her! 
On Wednesday I tacked her up and lead her around while helping Caroline (who was visiting with her horse Mike) with a lesson. Then I mounted up and we took a little ride around the pasture before just hanging out at the top of the hill in the riding area. She did well, seems a touch rusty and did not like the bit I used but other wise was great!  
So later this week I will find her a better bit and maybe we can ride a little more! 
So excited to have her here at at the St. Clair Red Mule Farm! 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Happy 1st Birthday Levi!

This is my Blue Eyed Levi at 1 year of age! 

Happy Birthday my little friend! 

Born on 7/7/11, the runt in a litter of 7 puppies!

I think Reuben sent you, to heal my heart! 

Photo by Bryan Pittman 

Photo Shoot!

Bryan Pittman came on June 16th and did a photo shoot for us! He did a great job! He stayed for several hours taking photos of my mules, donkey, dog and even the cat. Christina brought over Oakley for some great photos too!  Here is a link to his sight so you can see all the photos!  

Congratulations Debbie & Tucker!

Congratulations to my friend Debbie on the purchase for new mule TUCKER! He is a a great guy and I look forward to seeing them both on the trail a lot!  Another great mule purchased from The St. John's Family at Windy Hill Mule Farm!

Wheat Harvest!

Wheat being harvested in field across from my house on 6/21/2012.

Lure Coursing!

On June 10th Levi and I went with Molly and her dog Mandy to a Lure Coursing Competition! It was great fun and next time I will get Levi entered for real!  Two white bags get pulled across a course on a flat field for the dogs to chase. They are timed and get points taken away if they take any short cuts!
Mostly Greyhounds and those type of breeds do this sport but it has become popular for shorter breeds and non-hunting breeds too.
Here is a video link:
Levi is the last dog to go, this was his second try at it and I think did pretty well.  Molly and Mandy did the course in 23 seconds on Saturday and 27 seconds on Sunday! She is the third dog to go!

There was a lady there selling big dog beds at a very good price. So I got Levi a bed to help train him with for the living room! After all that running he sure enjoyed it that night!

Baby Birds!!!

 My friend Tara gave me some Ferns and the first week they were up birds made themselves at home! Five Eggs turned into 3 chicks!!! Too cute!

Congrats Tollie & some Hat Shopping!

Congratulations NEW MULE Owner Tollie Mitchell!  He is now the proud owner of a mule named Charlie! The two are a perfect fit! We got another one hooked on mules!!! 
After a nice ride with Tollie and Aimee, Reed and I had some Italian for lunch and then cruised into the Zebulon Hat shop! We were trying out hats for Driving Donkeys!!!


The amount of supervision I need from my charges to keep the St. Clair Red Mule Farm running smoothly is amazing!  Now if they could just all help out! 

Levi in the yard, Seven to my right and Sadie's nose to my left, Charlie the visiting mule behind me! We are filling the guest paddock's water trough!