Welcome to Fern Valley

Here in central Alberta prime farm country,my husband Martin and I work together raising beef cattle and Appaloosa horses. Fern valley appaloosas have long been known for their quality of temperament conformation and color.I have recently rediscovered a love of writing and have published 2 collections of poetry. "Telling Tails" and Tails Trails and Campfire stories" . I look forward to a future spreading my wings as an author and as a horse woman .

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Sometimes it is just fine

You know how sometimes you do something, that even as you are doing it seems, well STUPID?
I have these moments on a fairly regular basis in my life. But sometimes it works out OK .

Every day I put Harley out in the morning , and when I feed at night I have been making it a habit to halter him to lead him into his pen.It is a good learning experience for him,and also keeps him for crowding me with his pail of nosh.Mostly he is very good to catch, but did have a few days when I got home form mexico that he was running form me. I just  herded him into his pen, then haltered him and  led him back to the top pf the hill to get the bucket and led him back down. I didn't have to but I did have to halter him (you cant let these kids away with running off) so it is good work for him to learn he cannot avoid being caught by running into his pen.

The last few days he has been  much better, occasionally stepping away but always comes back and lets me catch him.And then there was today,he quick stepped sideways,(here is where the stupid idea popped into my head) and I for some unknown reason grabbed a handful of mane and said whoa!
Now those who have tried this out there know it usually ends in a "mane burn " or cut fingers from them yanking the hair out of your hands and leaving at speed. But not today .I grabbed mane and said whoa, and he stopped. Just like that! Good boy Harley! I haltered him and he nicely walked to his pen with me. Sometimes it works out  just fine.

I am sure hoping  that premise applies in July , I got a great opportunity to participate in a Dan James of Double Dan Horsmanship"Ground Control"clinic .I am not going to learn how to get my horse to sit on a bean bag or rear on command( I got that one already) more to learn about thier  ground driving techniques and build skills for me and for my horse, learning to improve focus and partnership.

 I will be taking none other than  our very special "FV Catch a Dream" Cat, Aka , the Fat baby or Whoa  Dammit.I had barley committed to the clinic online when I looked out and saw , her doing some frightening and athletic, "airs above the ground" in her pen!
I swallowed hard and thought "Oh my,  am I really doing this?"

Yup I am , I can and will get her and I ready for the clinic.And we will both work hard and learn!
And it will be just fine
Stay safe and warm my friends. I will get some more current pics soon

Monday, 25 February 2013

Business as usual,or not

First of all , to all my blog friends, I am sorry, I have been pretty absent lately . The cold I had took the wind out of my sails and I spent a lot more time snoozing than online. Oh well I did have a wonderful vacation. as the pic in the last posts show. Now that we are home and the march for spring is beginning,it is al I said , business as usual. Chores, work, chores,check cows,make supper sleep repeat. Not much new except...
What???? a calf?
Apparently management(oops that may be me or well lets say it was Martin, yeah that's it .LOL) We dropped the ball somewhere in the spring last year and our "steer"had one last Hurrah before  we got him fixed up properly. Sometimes those really late calves get missed somehow.  Anyhow,I had a moments panic trying to figure out how we could be calving fully 6 weeks early , then remembered this  group was in a different pen so . Sigh of relief. All's well that ends well I guess.

Other than that we are truly just doing the same old same old . My helpers Winston, Skeeter, and my unique brand of cow horse Johnny are with me each day , help to move the cows or just count them out the gate

Warmer days lately ,but we got some snow today so winter isn't through with us yet, but soon... right???
Stay safe and warm

Friday, 22 February 2013

Xel ha

I think, for the most part  I will let the pictures do the talking.I will comment on a few as we go  and say, it was awesome! we walked , and walked and walked . The Consciousness trail was wonderful though I  would say with all the low branches the "Unconsciousness trail" might have been a more likely name 

My favorite "Captain Corona " himself! 

This chair was a riot to get on. Martin started to "help me" up before I was  aware he was helping , so I wound up half on and off, laughing myself  to tears, trying unsuccessfully to not look like a turtle stuck on its back .Eventually wriggled the rest of the way up. But after that there was no way Connie was even going to try! LOL 

A Coati
and another 
then oh my!!! so many 

Swimmin' with the fishes! 

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Third star to the right, and straight on till morning

Well not quite never Never land , but coming from this

and landing in this 

 it seems a 
 magical place 
 Martins sister  Connie and hubby Mike were our travel companions again 

My 3 Amigos 
 We had a wonderful week in Playa Del Carmen ,on the Mexican Mayan Rivera. Sun sand sea and warm temps ! We were pretty low key this year, didn't go shopping in town at all and only took one day trip to XEL HA pronounced "Shell haa" (will have its own post , but amazing is all I can say for now on that )
A couple  injuries among us and we all have been super busy at home, so we laid low, soaked up the sun and truly  just enjoyed one another's company.All I brought home  from this trip were photos , wonderful memories , and a rotten cold!
But it was  worth every minute .I did go for my yearly "pamper me " treatment had a massage and steam at the spa. Where they also  did a gift ritual with us that included the  4 elements, a wish  and a prayer . we were left with seeds to toss in the ocean  to help our wish  come true. It was very nice and special. The folks at this resort treat us soo well ! our little houskeeper  went the extra mile when I fell behind with my bedtime chocolates  and built me this

and I didn't get a pic all  of the towel creation's she made but there is this one 
and of course the staff at poolside made sure we had plenty of theses

 Mexican fiesta night  was a great  dinner and show  with dancers and music.
Moslty ate  breakfast in the room , but the one morning we did go out , this  little fellow offered to  join us for  our meal .He is a "quati" or "Coati" first one I have ever seen , but once we got to Xel Haa I tell you ...
But this frllow was called Jimmy by the staff and a very friendly fellow . Martin did share a little breakfast with him, proving two things, that cute and bacon are both universal communicators!! 

My favortie part of the holiday was of course time spent with my hubby , but also this little beach. we were told about it and finally madeit there on the last day . a 10 (read 30 min) walk down the beach  there is this lovely bay with sandy footing and warm waters. when you walk in as the waves  come up and subside you find yourself  surrounded by hundreds of beautiful silvery angel fish ! 

 Mike was maning the camera and had a hard time getting me to look up ! I was  just fascinated! 
 A bit of a whoops where a wave nearly  knocked Connie off  balance 
 I think the look on our faces says it all 

Well that's it for now , other than it is wonderful to be home with my critters. Winston and Skeeter  greet me like nothing else in the world!
All is well here with the horses and cattle, they even left me a welcome home gift in the form of an "Agricultural land mine " (frozen poop under snow) which I promptly tripped over and found myself hugging the ground of the home I love!
Stay safe and warm my friends, I will post the rest of the pics soon