This is Lacy. She belongs to Whispering Hope Ranch. They’re letting us borrow her for awhile, and they have our halflinger, Sophie. I’ll tell you a little more further down!
<Contented Siiiigh> Cecily asked me to go riding with her this afternoon. It was so lovely. I haven’t been riding more than once since my mother’s surgery in mid-July. It was a busy and stressful end to summer, and now it’s been a busy schoolyear these four weeks. I love the new curriculum. (The Prairie Primer which I am doing with Danny, grade 5 and Betsy, grade 3.) In fact, I’m sorry there’s not another one available for me to do with the kids next year. It’s really, really delightful! But it’s also made me very, very busy. We have an hour more of school, and somehow it manages to stretch out even longer sometimes. There are so many things I want to do, so many things I should do. And until I can manage the time more efficiently, I just can’t do as much.
Today I purposed to can applesauce, and so betook myself to do it before lunchtime. We had some lovely, hot, homemade applesauce with our lunch, but after lunch, as I was preparing to actually can the second batch – I managed to burn it. Rrrgh. I didn’t bother to can it, but put it in pint storage containers and put it into the deep freeze downstairs. We’d eaten half the first batch with not enough left to do ought with but to store it in the fridge to eat tomorrow!
There are still 1 1/2 of the oversized bags of apples left. We want homemade cider and more applesauce. I suppose I will get to that in the next half week or so, but there is much going on. I’ve finally sold the horse trailer! Hooray!!! At the last possible moment, too, for I was set to haul it to Yoder Brothers auction at the Isabella County fairgrounds tomorrow. The auction is Saturday, but tomorrow is the day to take it and get it registered and all that. Nevertheless, a woman downstate is buying it to haul goats and ponies. I’m going to that very same town tomorrow anyway, so I shall haul it right down to her. It saves me considerable time and she’s even throwing in an extra $25 for the delivery! How’s that! God is good. All the time!
The apples come in big 25 lb. bags, intended for people to “not” bait deer with, according to DNR rules. What other purpose the apples are sold in deer hunting country, at the gas stations, alongside big bags of sugarbeets, corn and carrots, is only to be guessed at. But we buy them to preserve and to feed to the horses. I also got a 25 lb. bag of carrots. I think I ought to get a couple more bags of carrots and apples before it freezes and they become no good anymore. One day we will have all the apples we want from our own orchard. In meantime we store them down cellar, can them, and turn them into Cider.
It is funny that we are going to the Apple Orchard/Cider Mill for a school field trip tomorrow. It being homeschool and all, we really get to pick our own field trips, but this one was put together by a friend of ours, and frankly, though we have our own orchard and make our own cider (unpasteurized cider is the only cider as far as I’m concerned), I’m more interested in a.) getting to see how it is all done commercially, and b.) the fun of being with friends for the afternoon, eating apples and doughnuts and drinking cider (unless of course it is pasteurized and so has that tinny taste which I dislike – then it will be water for me).
Our trail ride this afternoon was really the cat’s pajamas. I’ve been so full of malaise since I returned home from Ohio a month ago when I was almost immediately launched into the new school year, that I have not ridden nor trained at all. Poor, poor Saxton has been growing fat and lazy (after having lost too much weight, certainly, while I was gone and others were taking care of him). He really likes to work, he does. It may seem silly, but there are days when I am certain he asks me, “Can’t we ride and learn new things today?” He just looks at me that way. And he is never so satisfied as when he is learning some new thing. But that is Saxton.
The three younger children and I went riding. Danny doubled up on Spur with Cecily. Betsy rode Lacy, the new Arabian mare we have on loan from The Ranch. She is 29 years old, petite and sweet, and she loves little girls. Frankly, I’ve fallen head over heels for her. There is something extremely precious in a horse that even a little girl can safely ride. I know that because I’ve had enough horses that weren’t safe enough for my little girl. And this sweet mare, while quite an expensive keeper, is worth her weight in Senior Feed Pellets! LOL! Betsy was able to ride her out on the trail entirely by herself. Next time we’ll let Betsy double up and Danny can ride Lacy, if he wants. It’s not fun to always be the one to double!
A busy, busy next several days. Hopefully next week will be less crowded, as I’d like to get some pictures, including the new lean-to I talked about.