“A day in the country is worth a month in town”Christina Rossetti

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Best Halloween Costume

This image caught my eye on my Goat slide show over on the right column.
You know I like this!http://kmima.tumblr.com/post/1432291002/chica-reality-hampered-by-dreams
If you click the link underneath it, you will go to a site that I can't tell you much about, except that it is fun.
It is titled Trap Pretty Horse.
If you like photography and creativity, and I know you do, take a look. It looks like its a collaborative, and if you want to open it up, click on the script (language?Japanese?) to the left of RSS at the top.
Your Halloween Treat!

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Trail Project Lives

Once again, I have to show you my other distraction. We have broken ground on the trail, and by this week-end, I hope I can say we have a half mile completed and ready to ride. Go to the other blog I administer, Ligonier Valley Trail, to see this month's progress.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fall Wrap Up

I got behind on my posts, so I want to catch up on Fall news before the snow flies.
Did I say that? Mowing is underway, and the place is getting ready for winter. Some of the grasses will remain standing for winter browsing. Its that time of year and Neo has been dating a few of the girls.
When he's not with them, he manages to be a bit of a pain, and twice I arrived at the barn in the morning to find him with the chickens.
Both times he managed to break through his gate that forms the back wall of his stall. The second time he lifted the gate off its hinges.
That's not easy folks!
We've made a few modifications. I had a special guest stay a few days. My high school best friend, and maid of honor, Terry, spent a relaxing few days of walks and touring around the area. We also had a few small feasts from the garden and Delallo's grocery store in Jeanette.
I can't wait to do it again. Jake finally found a new home, and we are all so glad its with Sam and his family.
Sam was Jake's farrier - and a Penn State fan - so all's good!
Sam also has two 4-H riders that will give Jake a few more years of activity. We managed to get to the Forbes State Forest and take a hike in the Laurel Mountains before all the leaves were down. Beam Rocks Trail is about as flat a trail as you can find, and my knee had no complaints about the brisk walk.
It felt good to be out and moving, and Jock appreciated the new smells and the many pats he got along the way. The weather turned from shorts and tank tops, to long pants and long sleeves, it seemed, overnight.
The afternoons can still warm up, but I've unpacked the turtlenecks, so I'm ready for the frosty mornings and cool nights.Tomorrow, my Fall flowers.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Do Border Collies Make Good Pets?

I was with a group today, and was asked a variation of a question I get many times. "Are Border Collies good house dogs?" NO!

They are athletic and attractive dogs, but don't be fooled by the good looks and agility. It comes with a price. Time. Yours. These dogs stay active for most of, on average, a fourteen year life span."Do they make good pets?" Yes - if you walk them four times a day. I mean it! They are work. They look for work. They need work - physical and mental. They are genetically, naturally, historically working animals - whether you want them to be or not. We hosted four 4-H lambs three summers ago, and as soon as Jock got in the corral with them, he had them grouped against the wall, without us giving any commands. We don't know any herding commands!For lack of goats or sheep to herd after the morning chores, Jock "herds" the tractors, quads, wheel barrows, lawnmowers, whatever moves. He runs everywhere he goes. He watches everything for movement, and can't wait for us to start up a motor.Tired is not a condition you often see a Border Collie in, which is why they can easily become a pest or unhappy. By the time he was almost two years old, we had become Jock's third owner. He needed intense attention and probably got those four walks a day - minimum. Winter or summer. Some Border Collies are known to herd people when they are bored. They become intimidating and nippy. We were able to avoid that with lots of walks and play.If you want to learn more about the work going into saving Border Collies and other dogs, visit The Dog Liberator blog. There they talk about the habits and personalities of these dogs, and the work they take to train and make each of them part of a home.Our Jock is a happy dog because he gets to run, chase and herd. Can't you see the smile? But remember, it comes with a price. Hard work.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Sunshine and Shadow

Taken when lost somewhere near Saltsburg, PA.

All images from the farm, but the one indicated.

Two Chicken Stories

In the fall I get my laying hens from a farm that raises 13,000 chicks for 20 weeks or so, to pullet stage. My four or dozen hens each year, as you may realize, are a drop in the bucket to them, but they treat me like I am their best customer. Usually I take a nice ride to Myersdale in October, get to see the fall leaves still changing a bit south of us, and get my few new hens.
I made my call a few days ago to arrange a time to stop and - what? They were sold OUT!

You have to understand that just last year, there were thousands still unsold, and it took till before Christmas to unload them all. They even muttered about giving up the business for a minute. Today they have nine roosters left. Good luck with them giving eggs!

So what changed? Its all about the salmonella scare. Farms can't keep up with their egg sales and are increasing their flocks. Oh My Goodness! People are willing to pay more for safe eggs. Hurray!I told the woman I talked to that I was happy for them, and I think at first she thought I was kidding, but as we talked, she realized I meant it. We talked about slow sales the last couple of years, and that this year they are trying to get hens from another flock to fill their orders, but can only get a few hundred more. She took my name, even for a few measly hens, and said if they get some hens from Virginia in November to fill their wait list, and a few aren't taken, I might get them. No promises.

Well, my girls are still laying, but I expect them to slow down fast. My refrigerator is not as stocked anymore, but that's okay. We will appreciate what we get till spring arrives and the eggs pick up again.

And then this story in the New York Times today:
New Way to Help Chickens Cross to Other Side By WILLIAM NEUMAN

“People don’t want to know too much,” said Marc Cooper, a senior scientific manager in the farm animals department of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, in London. “It’s hard to sell humane killing as a concept.”

I think that's the story in a nutshell. Read it and see what you think.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Video Glitch

Hello Friends!
I have a post in draft, but the video won't load up.
Its late. I'll work on it tomorrow. Perhaps I need to call this guy!

Turning To Gold

The vivid colors are disappearing but for the golds and yellows.
The grasses get browner each day.
Enjoying it while we can, as tonight we have more rain.
The last burst of color.
The videographer at work.