Thursday, July 23, 2009

Cinnamon Rolls

The day DH was cleaning up the riding paths a week or so ago... I made Cinnamon Rolls, from scratch.
Took the whole day but goodness were they good. I say "were" because they didn't last long at all. ;O)

Kitchen Garden

The Potato toss.
DH pulling potatoes out of the Garden.

Not only has our garden gone wild but so has our potatoes.

Pumpkin plants taking over and the beans trying to get up the poles. You can see the corn in the background.

Brussels sprouts and onions.

Can see the cauliflower and peas in the background.

DH cleaned up my Bridle paths

This is one of the large cedar stumps, next to one of my bridle paths. You can see the size it once was with the hat hanging on it and this is with the outer bark gone.
A whole string of photos DH took of some of the riding paths he cleaned up. It is really enjoyable to ride in the woods and now there is more than enough room to even take walks side by side.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tractor antics

Yesterday, I decided to do some small tree removal... lots of little scrub Alder has been growing into my hay field for 20 or 30 years. Now that we have hayed the parts that the guy was willing to do, I can clear out some of the parasites and make the field more hay friendly.
As soon as I decided to do that, it became evident that there would be at least some useable lengths of timber from the trunks. 8" at the base, 6 to 4" 14 feet higher up the trunk. Lots of trash and stuff that couldn't be used.
Took the machete out and cut away all the blackberries and brush at the base of the trees, so I could get close enough with the chain saw to cut them down.... Multiple lacerations to the hands and fore arms later, I can cut down some trees. Took down about a dozen..... stopped when I managed to have a trunk 'pinch' the bar of the chain saw. The trunk weighs more than my motorcycle..... that's a contest I am not going to win.

So I went to get my tractor, so I could use the bucket and a chain to lift the trunk off my saw. Had to unhitch the brush hog from the 3 point hitch on the back, and I noticed that the right lower arm is not really attached to the tractor as it should be..... the pin that holds the arm to the tractor is backed all the way out and is about to fall out.

I had observed this before; the part in use is not the OEM part, due to someone in the past breaking the mount, and having had to repair it.
The mount itself (attached to the tractor frame) consists of two 'ears' with holes in it to pass the pin through like an axle. Once the pin is inserted all the way, a lynch pin retains it. Except THIS pin doesn't go far enough through the hole to allow that. The end of the arm rides in a socket, on that pin.

No retainer, eventually the pin comes out, and the 3 point hitch becomes a 2 point hitch. Now that I have ample proof that this is not good enough, I am obliged to fix the issue.
I take the pin all the way out and examine it, and the mount. Someone has welded a big nasty blob of steel onto the outside of the ear, and it now interferes with the pin.... it can't go deep enough due to hitting that weld.
I grabbed a file, and proceeded to reduce the size of that bead of weld. For about an hour. After almost 2 hours, I had it reduced enough to allow the pin to go 'home'......... only it would still not do so.

I finally look at where the pin slides to, and realize it is hitting an obstruction on an adjoining piece of the tractor. (!) "Why would anyone design something like this? Why doesn't fixing the ear, solve the problem?"

That led me to remove the pin on the other side of the tractor for comparison.... the left arm mount should have been identical to the right side, after all.... I should be able to swap pins, and have it work just fine. Except the pins are different lengths, and due to the damage, the spacing on the ears is not the same. The left pin is too short to span the right ears...... and the right (replacement) pin is too long for the available space. The end of the pin that has the hole for the retaining device has the hole farther 'in' from the end of the pin.
A hack saw and file job on the pin ensued..... 30 minutes later, I have removed a notch from the pin that allows it clearance to seat in the 'ear', and I can finally add a cotter pin to keep this from happening to me again.

After 4 hours of tractor 'adjustment' I could finally go rescue my chain saw.

Some of the trees DH cut down and cleaned up.

Massive brush pile.

Story is written by DH. ;O)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

DS rides Dyfra !

Dyfra did a stunning thing today...just before our ride. I had DS get on her in the round pen, while she did keep her eyes glued to me, she did what he asked calmly with no wigging out! Woohoo...
Think part of why she did so well... is DS has been helping me feed Dyfra for 6 years. So she knows DS very well and all the years of work and training I have put into her. Now I wish I brought the camera out.

Reason I tried this, is my Niece is coming for a visit and wants a pony ride. Was going to use Stjarna but I am still battleing her Ringworm, so I don't want to use tack on her or have anyone else around her for awhile.
Think Dyfra will do fine in the Roundpen with me leading my niece around on her back.

After that, I had a wonderful ride out on Dyfra, checked out, the clean up bridle paths in the woods. DH did a wonderful job! Thank you Husband. :O)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Getting their nails done.

This is Sadie, having her Soft Paw's put on. This is how we keep both us and the furniture from getting scratched. It doesn't hurt the Cat's and it is easy to do.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

One funny Morning, a DS and Mia ~

This photo has nothing to do with that morning but I did want to show which Cat I was talking about.
So the other morning I opened my DS's Bedroom door to let the cats out, told DS to get up while turning on the light.
All I could see is this lump of something in bed. Mia was sitting there on the floor looking at the moving lump slowly come to life.
As it raised out of its bed, hair sticking out in all kinds of weird angles, Mia takes one look at him and fluffs up like a large bottle brush, tail, back, the whole 9 yards.
I just could not stop laughing, still can't stop laughing.
Guess Mia didn't recognize him for a minute there but then if I was Mia, I would of been scared. Too .... Much.... hair..... LOL

Mia forgave him after he fed her Breakfast.

DS and Mia might just have to be featured in a cartoon at some point.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Few Garden Veggies and a walk in the Woods

DH and I took a walk in one of our woodlands while it was still cool out and I could take some photos. We heard all manner of birds and heard the great white Owl that lives in the woods. One these days we will take comfy chairs and wait for him to show himself to both of us.
Only time I see this Owl in person, is when I am riding Dyfra and he has been known to fly right over our heads.
I had to use the riding Lawn tractor to get to the woods, as my walky bits aren't to happy with what I have been doing lately. So DH brought it over to me once we were done with the short walk in the woods. Isn't he handsome. :O) A knight riding shinny green metal.

Some of the many brussel sprouts interlaced with Onions in the Kitchen Garden.

Close up of one of the Corn stocks. I am back to using "Sugar Dots" this year, as it is the only corn I have found to be reliable in this climate.
We have been eating the spinach, lettuce and peas from the garden. The onions are just about ready to be cured for long storage. We still have a long wait on everything else.
Sadly I won't have much to store over winter.
It has been a very hot week for this area, with the temps running in the high 80's to mid 90's. We love our air conditioning! Can't wait for a little cooler weather, now that the hay is in.
DH is still looking for a job, done a number of interviews but no luck so far.
Both he and DS are keeping busy with the farm chores. At least they are never bored. ;O)

Saturday, July 4, 2009

The Magical Ride ~ a very short story

Once upon a time, there was this dark hair lady with blue eyes that rode a horse of the ancient Vikings. They were on a quest to find something very rare. The Lady rode the grey mist (Dyfra means, Mist in Icelandic) of the forest along the meadows, searching.

The Lady rode deeper into the dark forest with no fear because she knew her trusty grey steed would keep her safe. She listened and watched with her Viking horse as she rode on, hoping to find what she was seeking.

They came out to the edge of the Forest of Dark and Light, hearing a slight tinkling of bells then both turned and looked.

There in the distance ,through the dark forest to the meadow heights, mist dancing in the background, was the rare creature they were looking for. For you see, it is only seen once in a life time, a Miniature Chestnut unicorn wearing a neckless of tiny bells and protected by the good Fairies of the Forest.
( I do wish I had taking the better camera out, this would of been a stunning shot.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Haying has started and more Edda and Stjarna photos

Very late last night the hay guy was working in the hay field. He did not get it all finished, so hopefully tonight.
Sadly, the amount of hay we are getting this year is at least 1/4 less than last year, there is a good chance we will not have enough to sell, so we can cover the costs.

Pasture needs to be sprayed for broad leaf weeds, limed and fertilized. We just don't have the equipment and money for the lime and weed killer right now. But it will need to be done if we want to keep baling our own hay.

Stjarna and Edda,, you can see how much better and more fleshed out Stjarna is now. She still has a mama mare belly but her top line and backside are looking great. Excuse the meds on her face.

Edda checking out a daisy.