Life on an Arabian breeding farm in Capitan, NM.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

It has been a long El Nino…..

El Nino has stayed a very long time. This is the first dry spell we’ve had all summer. I’m dripping wet by the time I get done feeding, and it’s cool out. Ah yes now I remember that’s what humidity is like, I forgot. Much has happened this summer.
I still haven’t gotten the truck completely fixed, but it is running. I just have to be careful or it will stall out on me. We’re hoping that a new oxygen sensor will do the trick, but I haven’t had time to do anything about it. The truck’s only 26 after all, and it is a Ford so things like that should last forever shouldn’t they?
I discovered why I haven’t been able to get hold of Chad about the well. A friend told me he’s out of business (divorce). The backflow valve went out, and I had to call Huey. K D (grandson) came out, and got everything all fixed up so we’re good again. Now I have to start getting it fixed up for winter. The numerous little critters the Wild West is known for made a mess of things as usual. Lots of rain means lots of food out there, which means critters got carried away with nookie, and had lots, and lots of babies. Insulation makes for good nesting material. I don’t know how many times I have cleaned out the pump house only to discover that they got in yet again. I’ve gathered as much insulation as I could, and put it in trash bags, which I will then stuff in, and around pipes. This is supposed to be a mega El Nino winter, so I will have to take special care to insulate all the pipelines that are above ground. I don’t want to be replacing broken pipe all winter. I wonder if there is a patron saint for broken pipes?
As for the horses, they are all doing fine. Sierra is doing much better on just grass, and only a little sliver of alfalfa. His disposition has calmed down considerably. After the incident of the gate panel I switched him, and Ibn around. The long run gives him more room to burn off energy. It also is helping to wear down his feet since he won’t let me file them down. I haven’t had time to work with him on the necessity of allowing a human to mess with his feet. It was no problem when he was little, but of course he has forgotten all the things I taught him when he was little. Now that he’s a big boy he thinks he doesn’t have to mind his manners.
Moving Ibn put him next to Ghost. He came back to me about 3 or 4 hundred pounds under weight. Since Ibn is his best friend it was a good move for both of them. I had Forrie come, and float his teeth. Besides being depressed that was his main problem. He’s just now starting to look like he should, and starting to act like a horse running, and bucking when there’s a bit of coolness in the air. He hated being at the racetrack, and I swear there is something wrong with his back. When he was so skinny you could see his spine clearly, and it just isn’t right. I learned of a woman who does wonders with horses that have back problems. When I can find the money I’m going to see if I can get a consultation. If I know what’s wrong I can fix it. Meanwhile I’m feeding him lots of goodies to get his weight up. He’s still thin, but at least he’s a happy camper.
I also added a paint mare, and her baby to our group. No she’s not mine, she belongs to a friend. The dam was a maiden mare, and even though they were there when she foaled, overnight she became an over protective mother. She wouldn’t let anyone near her baby. The baby (I call her Smutty Face) is a beautiful Tovero filly just about the same age as Meerche. They’re only a week apart. Anyway her owner hasn’t been able to get near her since then. I offered to bring her here where they are in a stall, and I can work with her (like I have time to spare). The mare doesn’t really trust easily, and has passed that on to Smutty. I can now touch her without her freaking, but she still walks away. At least that’s better than her bucking, and running away. We also touch noses, and if I’m careful I can touch her chin when I offer her a sliver of alfalfa. She won’t take the calf manna I leave for her, at least not when I’m around her. Her dam (Bunnie) is the old fashioned QH style, all muscle. She was a little underweight (Smutty’s fault), but the calf manna has helped with that. She’s not so ribby now, and her tailbone is not so prominent. She’s still standoffish, but that’s mostly bluff. Once she realizes I’m not going to hurt her she’s fine with me. She was sold at one point, and a year later the people brought her back saying they couldn’t do anything with her. She was skinny as a rail, and even more skittish especially around men. If I had her for a while I could do more with her, but my friend said no. She’s going to sell her as soon as baby is weaned as is. She’s broke to ride in a round pen, which isn’t anything as far as I’m concerned. Good news is that Craig Cameron may use her for a training session at the Cowboy Symposium in October. It will do her wonders. I’m very excited about that.
Meerche on the other hand has absolutely no fear of anyone. She’s overly lovey, and insists on skirtches whenever anyone enters her stall. A friend of April’s wants to buy Penny as soon as she’s weaned, which is perfect. Penny will have a good home, and I will have another baby to raise. Meerche is still sweet as they come. She also had a little surprise for us when her foal coat shed out.
On her left back leg she has all kinds of spots, and her mane is coming out very flaxen. It’s not pure white like Ibn’s was when he was little, but that may change. She’s doing well on the lead rope too. I can pick up her feet with no problem, and do just about anything I want with her. Unlike Bunnie, Penny could care less about people getting near her baby. It wouldn’t do any good anyway, as she has a mind of her own, and does pretty much what she pleases. She’s learning not to play with people the way she plays with mom. That was a hard lesson. She doesn’t think of us as being different from her. I tried to explain that our skin isn’t as thick as hers, and we aren’t as strong as she is. A filly on my back is not exactly the way it’s supposed to work. She understands better now, and hasn’t tried it again. Of course I also know how to prevent her from getting in that position in the first place, and if she is behind me I keep her in sight out of the corner of my eye. It’s just a passing phase babies go through. She’s going to be a wonderful mare for April, smart, willing, and just the right size.
Enough for tonight, but wait I have more to tell…

Friday, September 4, 2015

I know it’s been a long time…

I know it’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything, unbelievably long. I began this post some time ago (don’t even ask) so I thought I would post it now, then later bring it up to date. Here goes.
I have a lot of catching up to do. My last post was written on 01/05, and we didn’t have water. There’s a little pressure hose leading from the transfer pump to a little box that tells the transfer pump to turn on or off (at least I assume that’s what it does).  Well that little hose had a crack in it spewing water all over the place. Hey at least the transfer pump didn’t crack, that would be $1200. I tried to get hold of Harvey’s (Chad Harvey’s Drilling) to no avail. I think the number I have is outdated. I couldn’t figure out how to take it off nor did I have the time to do it even if I could figure it out. You see God decided that we needed a break from the drought, and sent us more snow, and freezing temps. Now I know we need the snow (it’s the only way I’ll get water from my well again), howsoever, enough is enough. My once clean stalls were a sight to behold, and not in a good way. They were one big mucky mess, and so were the horses. It’s not that I forgot what a real winter is like I just forgot how much I don’t like it. I’m a desert rat remember? It was going to take a month of Sundays, and some serious sun to dry things out enough so I could clean them. Well that didn’t happen for a long time.
Meanwhile, the gator decided to go on the fritz. I need the gator, to haul wood (my stores were seriously depleted) amongst all the other things I use it for. I was hauling water one tank at a time, filling what I could, and putting the rest of the water into my big water tanks. I then filled my little tank taking it around to all the various water buckets, tanks, etc. I needed my gator! As I thought it was simply the battery, which Rudy informed me was the original battery. 10 years or so is a long time for a battery, wouldn’t you say? After a few days I finally got it going much to my relief.
What else went wrong let me see. I couldn’t use the front wood stove from which we heat the entire house (plugged chimney). Freezing cold temps, and no heat what fun. Ok we have the wood stove in the computer room, but that heat doesn’t really heat much more than the back room. Still it was better than nothing. Father’s happy he can play on his computer in warmth. Ok no water, no heat, and very little wood. That about summed up the situation. Rudy took his 34-hour break at home. He had to get all the stuff he left at home to put back in his truck. For some reason airlines take exception to tools, chains, mattresses, etc. The snow melted thanks to a nice warming trend (who ever thought that 45 would be considered a warm day). Rudy got on the roof to clean the chimney, and he checked on the pressure hose that cracked. He’s such a good guy.
I took Bree to the vet, and I was right we were going to loose her. She had a tumor that was pressing against the nerves that control balance, and her vision in one eye. I brought her home with some medicine that would at least make her more comfortable for what time she had left. She’s gotten mighty spoiled. I even got some fat from the butcher that I cooked up for her to keep her weight up. She got lots of pets, and Rudy even had her up on the couch with her head on his lap. His rules are animals are not allowed on the furniture. He’s the one that found her, and he’s the one that hurt most when she was gone. The medicine worked for a while, then she got worse again. I miss her terribly she was such a sweetheart. At least she was happy while we had her, and then too I have Pena.
Sierra did well. Thanks to youth he healed quickly, and thanks to Bute he had no pain while I changed his bandage. I weaned him off of the Bute, and had no problem changing his bandage from then on thanks to a feedbag full of alfalfa. I also changed his bandage just before I fed. I’m not dumb!
Rudy got the pump fixed with a new hose, and our water problem became a thing of the past. I put more R19 around the pipes going into, and out of the pump house, and the pipes stopped freezing. It helped that we didn’t get below 0 this year. It snowed about once a week, which made it a very long winter. May, and there was still snow on the mountain. It was finally gone by the end of May. I got the gator going, and my wood supply kept up with the snowstorms.
April was released by her doctor to go back to work again so she was here for about a month before she started working at the track. George’s daughter came from Wyoming to help out with Patty. It was just too much for George, and he couldn’t work because he couldn’t leave Patty alone. She brought her daughter, and then her daughter’s boyfriend. I thought he was a sweet kid. They got him enrolled at school to get his GED, then they will help him get a job. Before his parents got divorced he lived on a ranch, and loves coming to our ranch. Steph loves it too. I’m teaching them to ride, or perhaps a better word is re-teaching Steph, and Bryce. Brianna has never been on a horse till now. She’s 13, no bigger than a minute, and afraid of horses. Even so she is doing well. It’s fun for me too.
Penny had her baby, and we got there just in time. As I suspected she delivered early. She was due on the 20th, but had the baby on the 9th around 9:00pm. I had checked her, then a little while later April, Steph, and the kids came back from Patty’s, and stopped to check on Penny. It was a good thing too, because she was going into labor. Bryce came up to the house, and by the time we got there the feet were sticking out. I took position at the baby, and Rudy took the head. I was so happy Rudy was here that night, he was going to leave the next morning. She took a little while to deliver, but finally we had a beautiful chestnut filly. April named her Aul Meerche (Meershe).
Meerche is different from our other babies. She’s quiet, and shy. By two weeks the others would be tearing around the paddock running, and bucking like crazy. She runs a little, but in a quiet way. She is by far the sweetest baby we’ve had yet. She’s quick to learn, loves her skirtches, and is spoiled rotten (of course).
George got double pneumonia was in the hospital, then two weeks after he got out Patti went in the hospital with the same thing. Because of her other health problems they sent her to Albuquerque. She spent a couple of weeks in the hospital, then went to re-hab. She now has full-blown diabetes on top of everything else. Thank God for Steph. The riding lessons have stopped for now, and I don’t know when she’ll have time to start them again. Bryce took off back to Wyoming, which turned out to be a good thing. He was not the person he put on he was. Poor Brianna has had her first lesson in the perils of love.
I can’t remember whose truck died first, but both George’s, and my truck died (thankfully not at the same time). I discovered that St. Eloi (or St Eligius) is the patron saint of mechanics. I’ve been praying to him a lot. We replaced the fuel pump, and it went exactly a mile, and a half before it quit. Rudy came home, and did a full tune up on it. It still wasn’t working right, so George was getting us both water, and feed. Meanwhile Sierra tore down his gate (actually he lifted it up, and took it off it’s hinges), coming out of it with only some scrapes (thank you for that Lord). I moved him, and Ibn, and took him off alfalfa completely. He had gotten so full of himself he was getting unmanageable. Cutting out the alfalfa has done wonders for his demeanor.
I have one more thing I can replace on the truck to try to get it running properly (an oxygen sensor). God willing it will do the trick. The truck runs well enough to get water, and hay, but still stalls at the idle when it’s warm. I’ve spent so much time working on the truck I haven’t done much else except mow. El Nino has been kind enough to stick around for the summer so I have been mowing constantly. At one point it was the only vehicle that was running. Rudy got the gator going when he did the tune up on the truck. Seems there is an anti-spark screen on the end of the tail pipe. It was so full of carbon the poor gator couldn’t breathe. Rudy poked a hole in it, and now the gator runs perfectly. Unfortunately, he couldn’t get it off so we can’t replace it.
All vehicles are running now (more or less) so the water pump just had to give me problems. It’s not exactly the water pump, but one of the pipes at the pump house. Metal to plastic just doesn’t work well in our extreme temps. I guess this is going to be an annual thing unless I can figure out a way to keep that one section of pip from cracking (yeah right).
That’s as far as I got when our lives got so busy I couldn’t even see straight. Well I’m going to try this again. Keep tuned…


Thursday, January 15, 2015

Christmas day was the last day we had water…

Poor Father came home to freezing temps, a cold, and no running water. It’s been more than a week now that we haven’t had running water. Today we got up into the 40’s, and tomorrow it’s supposed to be 51, then Wed temps plummet again. All I need is one day of water for showers (thank God it’s winter), dishes, laundry, and yes I need to fill all my water tanks again. Tomorrow is out because I have to take Rudy to the airport in Roswell, and then see if I can take Bree into the vet. She has gotten weaker, and I’m really afraid we are going to loose her. She can’t hold her head straight, which throws her off balance. She’s also loosing strength. She spent most of the day today in the house. She had been getting stronger, and I was hopeful, then this morning she didn’t eat her breakfast. She is very clingy again also. Down at the barn she kept coming over to me leaning against me, and looking at me with those big brown eyes that can melt even the hardest of hearts. All I can do is caress her. I can’t make her well, I don’t even know what’s wrong with her, but in my heart I feel like we’re loosing her. I bred her for a puppy (Pena) because I didn’t think we would have her for a very long time, but I’m not ready to loose her just yet. I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to loose her she’s such a sweet girl, so loving. At any rate tomorrow is full up.
I got a lot done today taking advantage of the nice weather. I didn’t get enough done but thanks to the freezing temps I have way more to do than there are hours in the day. I did get two of the inside stalls cleaned, and I picked up a load of wood. How I wish I had a descent chain saw. I then filled up the small water tank. The automatic waterers were low, and it’s much easier filling them with the small water tank than hauling water bucket by bucket. Ok so I have to fill the small tank bucket by bucket, but I don’t have to walk anywhere. I was almost finished with Ibn’s waterer when Rudy came back from town. Great timing, he could help me fill the tank again. I still needed to give the pasture horses water. We filled the tank, and then he helped keep the horses at bay while I drove the gator in. The kids see the gator, and they come running. The gator means two things, food, or water, the two things they care most about. I actually don’t mind filling their tank the hard way since it gives me an excuse to spend time with them. They don’t get enough attention being in pasture all the time. While the water is filling the tank I can skirtch, and hug to my hearts content. The oat hay has really made a difference with their weight. Shazam is still a little thin, but he’s on the bottom of the pecking list so there’s really nothing I can do about that. Jazzy also needs a little more on her back end, but everyone else has nice round rumps, and unfortunately, nice big bellies. It’s winter, and I would rather them a little fat than a little thin especially since the weather has turned so cold.
I went back up to the house to get rid of the water tank, and cut some of the wood I had collected only it was getting late, and we still had to change Sierra’s bandage. I had given him a little Bute in some goodies to try to make life easier. I realized (a little late) that the reason he was so good at first was probably because I was giving him a shot of Banamine to help with the pain and inflammation. Duh, sometimes I really wonder about myself. The Bute helped, and so did the alfalfa in the feedbag Rudy set up. It was almost feeding time anyway, and there’s nothing like food to take a horses mind off what’s being done to him. He was much better once he realized it didn’t really hurt as much as he thought it would. It’s the anticipation of pain that is making him behave badly. Once he gives in he is real good. I just hope he behaves himself better the next time I have to do it by myself. I have to talk to Becky about him too. There’s a flap of what I think is ligament just hanging that I really think needs to be cut off. Sherry has said as much, and so has Rudy. He’s healing quickly so it will have to be cut off soon, and I can’t do it. Like I said there simply aren’t enough hours in the day. I got everyone fed, and the barn horses watered. Hopefully everyone will have enough water till I get back from Roswell. I won’t be able to fill the big tanks (unless miraculously we get water) until the day after when we’re supposed drop down into the teens again. After that the weather is supposed to improve. Lord I hope so. I need to get back to my routine.
We didn’t get much done after that. Rudy had to pack so the chimney didn’t get cleaned, but at least he got my new phone activated. I got the new iphone. It’s supposed to have a great camera, and lots of space. We’ll see how the pics turn out. I’m especially interested in the new video capabilities. Maybe now I can add some short videos to my blog. That would be nice I think. I’ve been really disappointed in the camera on the phone I have. We’ll see how the new phone pics are.
Well that’s the plan for the next few days. Hopefully I’ll be able to get my stalls back in order, get my wood stores replenished, get running water again, find out what’s really wrong with Bree, and get Sierra’s booboo attended to. Now let’s see how much if any of that actually comes to fruition.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Well I guess today was better than yesterday…

Today was the last day of the year, and hopefully the last of the extreme weather. It has been a few years since I’ve had to deal with these extreme cold temps, and while I haven’t forgotten what it’s like, I have definitely been spoiled the past few years with our mild winters. Why can’t we have just the right amount of snow without going down to nearly 0 degrees? If we have a mild winter then we don’t get the snow we need to survive the summer. If we get snow we also seem to get days in the teens or less, with howling winds that go right through you. It does make for beautiful pics I have to admit. I can’t really complain today was definitely warmer than yesterday. I even saw the sun, it does exist, it does exist!
We got up to a whole 19 degrees today, of course tomorrow it’s supposed to snow so I guess it will be at least a week before I can even think about having water again. Before it starts snowing Rudy will go into town to get a load of water for the horses. I’ll fill the tank up at the house, and the pasture horses tank. I got it about half full today poor things, they were down to just ice. They don’t drink that much, but there are seven of them, and every day I take at least an inch or two of ice out. That means a tank will only last about two days, maybe three if I don’t have that much ice, and they don’t drink too much. It’s not as big a tank as I have up at the house, maybe about 200 gallons or so, I don’t remember exactly. I took the float off deciding to keep it off for the winter. If we are going to have this cold of a winter I may as well since I can’t use it if there’s no water. Besides where it’s located it takes forever for the pipes, and hose to unfreeze even after we get water flowing. The whole pasture setup is weird. I don’t know what Rudy was thinking when he put everything in, neither does he. At any rate we have a pasture, and I am very grateful that we put it in before everything else fell apart.
I had Rudy go pick up hay today since I only had enough alfalfa for today, and Lord knows what the roads are going to be like tomorrow. I got everyone fed, and was just about ready to go up to the house when Rudy called telling me he called Harvey’s, and they would only be open till noon today, and not at all tomorrow or Friday. He also informed me that the electricity was out, and Otero (the electric company) was trying to track down the problem. More fun, I really needed that Lord. I was about ready to come up to the house anyway so I finished what I was doing (hauling water of course), and high tailed it up to the house. I asked dad to make a shopping list so I could do his shopping for him, gave Rudy my shopping list for Harvey’s, and sent him on his way. Without electricity I didn’t want to break ice and put it in the big tank not knowing when the electricity would come on again. It was still too cold to change Sierra’s bandage so I got Dad going with some instant oatmeal since his milk had gone sour while he was gone. Then I got myself something to eat. I’m not picky I had some cold stuffing for breakfast. Hey it has grain, fruit, and protein in it. Sounds great to me. I was going to cut some wood, but Paul Bunion I’m not. I decided to rest a bit before I had to go down to the barn to figure out where I was going to put 16 three-strand bales of alfalfa.
I managed to get about half an hour of rest before I realized that the whole of Capitan might be out of power so I called the Mercantile, and Smokey’s (the grocery), and when neither of them answered I knew there was no going to town for groceries or anything else. I can remember when all registers had a hand crank so when the electricity went out you could still carry on business. Well those days are long gone so I called Rudy, and asked him to stop at Wal-Mart to pick up some medicine for Father, along with some milk. Dad would just have to deal with whatever we fixed for dinner. Poor thing he slept most of the day anyway so food didn’t really matter.
Rudy was going to be back in about an hour so I went down to the barn to see what I wanted to do about the hay. Now our barn is big, but I have to keep all the hay separate. I also have only half of it to work with since one side is all stalls. Then I have my feed area, not to mention various and sundry pieces of equipment. The tack room takes up about a quarter of one side of the barn as well. What I’m left with for hay is about a quarter of the barn. I have Ghost’s hay over by the feed, then there’s George’s, and April’s hay. I have all the oat hay next to George’s hay along one wall, which leaves part of one wall where the tack room is. I can put three bales of grass, and twelve bales of alfalfa there. The rest can go in the front stall across from Sierra where I have the rest of the grass. I bring the last bales of alfalfa from the front into the barn, and move the rest of the grass around so I can put four bales of alfalfa there. I just get everything re-arranged, and the barn swept when Rudy comes back. Pretty good timing if I do say so myself.
Rudy gets back, and we get all the hay situated. It is so much easier with two people. Rudy still isn’t up to par (much to his dismay), but he can at least get the hay off the truck for me to stack. No I can’t carry them. But that’s what the dolly is for. I can only stack them three high, but that’s good enough. Such was the last day of the year. Hopefully the new year will be better than this last. Seems like I’ve said that every year for the past four or five years. Hey the hard times can’t last forever.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

It was 17 alright…

Well the weatherman said the low for the night would be 17, and he was right. When I got up in the morning it was 17, unfortunately that was also the high. By the time Rudy got up (a short time later) it had dropped to 16. He groaned when he looked outside. Driving to Roswell in freezing fog is no fun, but Father was coming back from his vacation. Oh well such is life.
By the time I went out to feed the temp had dropped to 14, what fun. It was beautiful outside. Everything was covered with white, not like snow, but all light, and lacy. The horses were all lacy too. They had frost on their manes, and tails, even their eyelashes sported lacy white frost. Luckily I had put the beet pulp in the tack room so it was only slightly frozen. I tried breaking ice for the horses, but it froze over again quickly. Water is a problem. Without electricity down at the barn I cannot use the water heaters. They don’t drink a lot, but they still need water. There’s not a lot of snow for them to slake their thirst so they have to drink what they can when they can. Unfortunately, I can’t quite seem to make them understand that.
I get everyone fed, break ice, and take it up to the house to put in the big tank where I have water heaters. George calls, and asks for a ride to Capitan. By now the temp has dropped to 13, and I have to doctor Sierra in this? He of course is being a pill yet again. As soon as I get one side done, he paws the gauze off before I can get the other side done. Finally (after I get quite ticked at him) I manage to get his leg up in the air resting on my knee. I slap both gauze pads (loaded with antibiotic) on at the same time. Quickly I pulled out the wrap, and started to wrap his leg, which he tried to thwart till he realized that I was only wrapping his leg. That he doesn’t mind. Finally I get done. Kids! Thanks to his fighting I’m not really that cold, which is a good thing as the temp has continued to drop.
I take George to town, come home, and rest a bit before I start working again. Rudy has called several times, first to tell me that Father’s plane has been delayed an hour. He saw about 4 or 5 accidents on the way up including a state trooper who ended up smashing his front end on a barrier after spinning out. Embarrassing! The roads are very icy. He calls again when he is stuck on 70 on his way back home. A pickup has wiped out, and they were waiting for the salters to come before they let anyone else through. He had already been sitting for half an hour. Actually he was very lucky because shortly after he turned off to 380 they just plain gave up, and closed 70. He called when he got to town, Father had to eat, and because the roads were so icy he wanted to get home as quickly as possible so they didn’t eat in Roswell. They were at Smokey’s eating, and would be home soon. Meanwhile I start cutting wood. It is going to be a very cold night, and I need to get more wood. I test the logs I cut the other day, and they aren’t ready to split yet. This cold should help, I hope.
Rudy gets home, and immediately I can tell that Father is sick. No he says it’s just his normal cough. Right. I get more wood cut, and split filling the wood boxes, and sit down for a few minutes with Rudy. 4:00 has come too soon and its now 9 degrees out. The poor horses, I know they are built to deal with these cold temps far better than we are, but I can’t help but feel for them. I gave them extra hay, and oats in the goodies I give the seniors. I know they will be fine, but ok so I’m a big softie, what can I say it’s cold out. The sun hasn’t broken through the fog all day leaving little light in the barn. It’s so cold that the soaked supplements I give Jeri freeze before I can feed them to him. I’ll have to bring the beet pulp I normally soak overnight into the house. They’ll freeze before the pellets can absorb the water even if I leave them in the tack room. After I get everyone fed I still have to break the ice, and fill waterers. There are two buckets in the barn, Sierra’s small tank, and the two automatic waterers in the back stalls. Star is the thirstiest horse, and because she has such a small petite head with a short nose she can’t reach the water so I have to fill her tank three times a day. As soon as she sees me with the bucket she runs over to get a drink. She doesn’t seem to understand that I have to put it in the tank first. If we ever get electricity back down at the barn things will be a lot easier. Until then I have to do things the old fashioned way. It makes one wonder how our ancestors managed so long ago without the conveniences we now take for granted. Water is always my first concern, but no matter what I can always get some. I just go down to the village key in my code, and fill my water tank. If they had snow they could always melt enough for cooking, washing etc., but what about the desert people. How did they manage? It makes one appreciate our modern conveniences, and points out just how spoiled we truly are.
I finally get done, and head up to the house. I feed the dogs, and chickens, and then myself. I sink into mothers chair heating pad on my back, and plan not to move till it’s time to come to the computer room after Rudy goes to bed. Father comes in, and says, that he’s running a slight temperature, and his cough is going to keep him up all night. I don’t know if he’s insulted more by being sick, or by the fact that I was right. I told him he was sick, but no he knows better than I. I ask him if he took his cold medicine, which he forgot he had, so I get him a cold tablet, and make him some honey tea. That should calm his cough for a little while at least. I also set up his vaporizer with Vicks in it. It’s dry here to begin with, and with his heater, and the fireplace going the air in the house is twice as dry. When you have a dry cough that only makes it worse. Anyway I get him situated in his room, and settle back down. By the time I put Rudy to bed, and sit down to my computer, it’s 5 degrees out. I think that’s cold enough. I start the fire in the computer room since one fire isn’t going to do the trick this night. The computer room is a converted porch I think. There are sliding glass doors leading to it off the TV room. It doesn’t necessarily help to warm the rest of the house by having the wood stove going in there, but it does keep the cold from invading the rest of the house. When we lived in a regular house with heat, and air I would turn the thermostat down to 55 at night in the winter so it works out about the same. Sometimes it’s even a little warmer in the morning, at least in the TV room it is. Now our bedroom is another story. It has lots of windows, and it’s on the north side of the house. That works fine in the summer, but winter not so much. That’s what blankets, and quilts are made for. Finally I settle down and get myself to bed wondering what tomorrow will bring. Hopefully a little warmer day, are you listening Lord?