Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Definitely Going to Need a Hay Feeder

I never thought it would be this difficult to find a wall-mounted hay feeder.  Well, perhaps difficult isn't the right word -- I should say pricey.

We're bracing ourselves for a big flooding situation at the donkey shed.  We're not being pessimistic; odds are darn high that with the amount of snow still sitting here when the big thaw finally hits, donks are going to be waist deep in water.  (I usually throw hay on the ground.)

Ergo the need for a hay feeder.

This past weekend I turned to Tractor Supply.  There are three stores within about a 30-40 minute drive.  All out-of-stock.  I drove to the closest store to pick up shavings and assumed that if I ordered it to be delivered to the store I wouldn't be saddled with the shipping charges.  Wrong.

I started looking elsewhere online.  One of my favorite horse/donkey supply companies wanted $30 shipping fees for a $40 feeder.  Really??

Yesterday I called our local feed store, Highland Feed, and glorioski he's going to order a couple and they'll be in by the end of the week.  Small, local, and independent prevails!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Aiee Karumba!

What do you use a horse trailer for?  Storing hay and shavings, of course.

Last weekend Rick and I needed to haul some of both to the donkey shed and oh, what a treat that was.
Have you noticed chores can never be simple and easy.
First step in this process was digging through to the rear to open the darn ramp.  Aiee karumba!

The water sled has a dual purpose -- its secondary job is to help haul bales of hay from the trailer to the shed.  But good golly Miss Molly.  For one with bad balance, trying to drag a sled through a rough path is exceptionally difficult.  When Rick saw how I was teetering he gave me the leg of the sled run after the tricky footpath.
Rick takes over the bale stacking job.  I'm too puny.  (I seem to have a few skill sets to work on, hmmm...)

And of course Team Donkey (see post from 1/1/14) must assist in all aspects -- "get out of the way dogs!!"

Friday, February 21, 2014

Water Troughs Are Not Supposed To Be Yucky

A couple of days ago I gave a closer look at the water "trough" (its actually a BIG round rubber bowl) and  decided on my next day off it would be time to clean out that baby.  Hasn't been scrubbed in months and as I felt along the sides I uttered an involuntary "yuck!".  So today was the day.

Hauled out more water from the house, shooed the donks from the vicinity and set to the job -- not what I would look forward to in 3 feet of snow.  Grabbing the brush devoted to that task, I stuck my gloveless hand down in the yucky water.  Scrubbed.  Dumped the water (which of course just puddled under the trough), noticed there's still yuck left, so scrubbed a bit more, rinsed and refilled.  Oh yes, put the heater back in - after cleaning the yuck off it too.

Then on to the regular chores.

Since I can only carry two buckets of water out on the sled, I'll need to refill at least once more today.

And did I tell you the shed is starting to flood.

And did I tell you I'm getting cranky.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Thank You

Its comforting to know a friend will be at the ready to assist when a shout goes out.  Friend Brenda fills that description perfectly.  All right, we've not been in dire situations, but she has been my technical advisor for the past two to three months for the donkey blog.

She'll get a call or an email with my non-savvy voice saying, "yea, but how do I do that?"  And usually she knows exactly what to do.  If not, she's a whiz at scoping out the problem.

Plus, she's an excellent cheerleader, looking at my stats and excitedly pointing out positive trends.

Yes, this is my friend pictured at her trusty laptop, donkey blog at the ready.  Yes, this is the most exposure she wanted -- a head and hand shot.

For everything you do, my friend, thank you!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Waste Management

Manure disposal doesn't stop during the snowiest, coldest winter in many years.  I have to tell you, this job is the bane of my donkey existence right now.  Really...
Steps needed to get the job done:

1.  Greet donks on the way to the fully-loaded wheelbarrow.

2.  Trudge down the snow packed, snow-rutted, slick driveway to the manure pile.
3.  Try to dump the manure on top of the ever-increasing mound of snow.
      Step 3 may take several attempts to dislodge the full load.
      So that manure does not roll back into the driveway, Step 3 part 2 involves shoveling
       manure further back onto the mound of snow.  
4.   Because manure has frozen into the wheelbarrow, now take the shovel and hack at the
      frozen chunks.
5.  Begin the precarious trip in the ruts and the slickery snow, back to the donkey shed.
6.  When you slip and fall into the 2-3' mound of snow, do not try to push yourself up (its
      hopeless), just roll over onto solid ground and elegantly spring into an upright position.

Steps 2-6 should not be done through gritted teeth or while cursing.  Yea, right.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Mrs. Pastures Cookies

My treat of choice right now is Mrs. Pastures Cookies.  Store-bought treats that is, after carrots and apples.

They're not inexpensive, but then again they're not an everyday occurrence.  My horse vet once said to me, it's why they're called treats -- only a few at a time.

So only a few at a time, and certainly not everyday.

If you take a look at the label, you'll see the reason for my fondness.
Very few ingredients, I can say them all (very important) and know what they all are. Nothing chemically.
You betcha.

Now, do the donkeys like them.
Let's see...

Somehow these little monkeys know when I have treats in my pockets, from a mile away.

That's Gabby ready ready ready to wrap her lips around a tasty morsel.

Luigi with that wild-eyed look is about to pop one in his mouth.

The bonus is Natural, my horse, loves them and so do the dogs.  Fancy that.
Now, I do have a recipe for some DIY treats; yes, I will make them soon.