Monday, December 14, 2009

Mr. Fox

Saturday night, we thought we'd take in a movie as a family. Without consulting William, we decided to go see Mr. Fox. It had gotten good reviews and was suitable for all ages. It was animated, but nowadays, some animated films are amazing.

William complained. He did NOT want to see Mr. Fox. Why did we have to see that? He wanted to have a say blah blah yada yada..... Being adults and having the money and keys to the car, we used our advantage. EITHER - you come with us to Mr. Fox OR you don't see a movie. We were offering a free movie to him and we had heard he would surely like the movie.

About half-way through the movie, he asked what time it was. I was right there with him, and vowed to include him in all future movie choices.

Had a very nice horse ride on Saturday with dh. He tried the new horse, which we are keeping for my sister. His name is Okie, and we are in the position for the first time of having a horse that knows more than we do. He's had a lot of training. But all of our riding has more or less been English - and he is a neck-reining Western horse. New things to learn!

Last night, I went to turn out the barn lights, and after shutting the doors, paused. It was a bit cloudy, obscuring the meteor shower. But I listened. So quiet. Then, I could hear the highway two miles from us. I wish I could hear what it might have sounded like to live here before cars and planes. I tried to imagine. I heard a dog bark. Maybe animal sounds? Would too much quiet bother me? I became aware that my ears were ringing a bit in the quiet, likely reverberating still from constant sound. I think our world has lost something in not occasionally having complete silence.


I could not help but be amused with the arrival of dh's Golf Digest, covered with photos of President Obama and Tiger Woods: "10 Tips Obama Can Take from Tiger". What horrid timing! In tip #10, it says "Tiger never does anything that would make him look ridiculous". Oops! How about telling the media you just had a little fender bender at 2:30 in the morning because you couldn't sleep and your wife, instead of say, trying the door locks or breaking out a less expensive side window, breaks out the back window and hauls your sorry rear out the back. We were supposed to buy that? Amusing.

Does he have a right to privacy? Interesting question, because he thinks it doesn't affect us. Truth is, in today's world, he visits my home as much as some people I know in real life. My son looks up to him, and worried over his accident. He has hurt a "community", not just his family. He has let people down - but then perhaps it is our fault for thinking that the wealth, fame and power were incidental to his character.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Gingerbread Houses

Just in case you are preparing for Christmas by making gingerbread houses, you might want to read why I will not be making one. I still remember laughing with my mother-in-law over this. Fun times. You can also read why it is amazing I even associate with my sister.

Blocked for Content

Somehow, Windows downloaded a family safety filter to my computer. I don't know when or how it happened, but I wouldn't have deliberately added it. It decides if the web pages are family friendly or not. My own blog was blocked for content! It must have been those posts on big (chicken) breasts that elicited all those hits. Perhaps it was the post on sexy hooker shoes?

And fellow bloggers, I could tell you that a few of you are blocked as well, naughty as you are. I need to get the blasted thing removed, but that takes time to figure out where it is stored. For now, I disable it each time I turn on the computer.

Speaking of content, I find it most interesting that the entry on my blog most read was not written by me, but by Lauren. It is about how music has been changed by technology. Many people, especially in Great Britain, Germany and other European countries, go directly to this article. I wonder if they know each other, these readers, or if it is linked somewhere from someone else's blog. Just curious. And a little ego deflated. It does point to the type of writing that can get a lot of attention, other than big breasts that is.

As for technology, I've become an old fuddy-duddy already. Don't get me wrong, I love learning new things and though we have our moments, I love computers. But recently, I was asked if I'd like an iTouch for Christmas. Many friends extolled the virtues of this device. Yet, I cannot help but think it is one more thing to keep track of, one more thing to figure out and no time in which to do that. And my purse only has one pocket for my phone. I'd have to turn this purse in for a new one and I haven't even had it for five years yet.

I think I'll stick to just my ordinary cell phone for now. Go ahead, tell me how much you love your iPhone or iTouch. I know you want to.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009


I congratulated myself on my ability to handle the cold, the horse chores, the schedule. God must have thought me too proud and sent the wind. NOW it is cold. Now, the wind rips through your layers of clothing so that you can fully feel. So, y'all have to suffer now the cold because I was too proud of myself. I'm not anymore, so maybe He'll take it back.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

My Town Monday: Kentucky Fried Good?

This appeared on the wires the same day that PETA sought permission to put a five and a half foot statue (see photo left) on a corner of downtown Louisville, protesting KFC's treatment of chickens:

In a state where horses are a mainstay of the cultural and economic lifeblood, the new top perch for chickens in the pecking order of Kentucky agriculture once seemed unlikely. Kentucky's slumping horse industry appears on pace to be overtaken by poultry farming as the king of the state's agricultural sector, economists said Thursday. In a state where horses are a mainstay of the cultural and economic lifeblood, the new top perch for chickens in the pecking order of Kentucky agriculture once seemed unlikely.

That both articles appeared in the same week should not be dismissed as coincidence. It is unlikely that Louisville will give the permit, given that KFC headquarters there and provides a number of local jobs.

The change in the state's leading industry to date, horses, was indicated in our state motto: "Unbridled Spirit". Given the decline of the industry and the rise of the chicken, I propose that the motto be changed to "Unruffled Feathers" or perhaps combine the two for "Horse Feathers".

What do you think? Should PETA be allowed to display its chicken statue?

For more posts about towns about the world, visit My Town Monday.


Got our first snow today. William insisted on sledding, though he slid more on grass than the white stuff.

Decided that Jack the Cat looks so bad because he's so old, he can't clean his coat especially on his far backside. So I took a comb to him and removed a whole catful of hair.

Judas, who betrayed me by being a boy, crowed today for the first time.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Poopy Farts

My kids always say I'm crude, so I'll just lay it on the line and tell you about it. I have nothing to lose. My horse, Etta, has the poopy farts. It's so bad, that she's decorated the walls of her stall, and I'll not describe that in detail in case you are having this blog with your morning coffee and toast. I've not seen a horse have this problem before, but it is of concern because of her lack of extra fat and the coming winter. Yes, I know, we all wish we could eat all we want and not gain weight, but in a horse, this is a problem. And, would you be willing to have poopy farts to achieve this? I thought not.

So, I've begun an investigation as to the cause, starting, of course, with Google. And yes, there is information about it on the net, and you my friend, are about to learn a horse thing you might not otherwise know. You can entrance friends with your newfound knowledge at cocktail parties.

Etta arrived thin. I thought perhaps it was because she's had eight babies in her sixteen years and Arabians tend to be thin. I increased her senior horse feed, and for awhile this helped put on weight. But, more recently, she seems a bit down and off of her hay. Sad because Quid left? Possible, but combined with her digestive problem, it is something more.

I talked to the vet, who asked for a sample. How much, I asked? Several "apples". He said one over-zealous horse owner delivered to him a garbage bag full of manure for a fecal test. While the test for parasites is being run, I'm going to give her QuestPlus wormer. Though recently wormed with ivermectin, it doesn't get tapeworms. Rule that out. Evidently, she could be the type of horse that bimonthly worming doesn't effectively relive her of parasites.

It could be that she has an imbalance in her gut. After investigating the parasite problem, we'll move on to a probiotic or enzyme supplement, though reviews on their effectiveness is mixed. And if that doesn't work, it may be that she has irritable bowel syndrome. In a horse. yeah.

I'm thinking about taping paper to the walls and selling the results as "horse paintings". It could be a trend. Think I'm off-base? Our local zoo sells elephant poop at a premium for gardening. I'll add the artistic flair to it and make a mint!

I've named the smallest of my bantam black hens "Aunt Rita", after my 90+ year old great-aunt. My family laughed at me, but one night in the barn, the hen turned to look at me. With her jet black "hair" and curled head feathers, hunched a bit, she reminded me of my Aunt Rita. I don't know why, I told you I'm losing it!
My brains feel like scrambled eggs these days. I'm waiting for the big mistake, the thing I forgot I was supposed to do. After the big push to get all the college applications completed for Lauren by December 1st, I now realize that it is Christmas season. We've not even set up the Advent wreath yet, and we're already up to two candles by tomorrow.

The kids have asked when we will set up the Christmas tree. I had a good excuse on this one - I buy from my good friend, Becky, whose tree farm wasn't open until today. But then, after getting the tree, I have to dare to open the closet under the steps in the basement where ornaments live in the off season. I think a good deal of monsters live there, too, chaos monsters, and that's why I fear opening the door.

It is fearsome cold here. Last night, we went to our town's "light up" celebration, ate at the Irish Pub while watching the train outside roll through the town only 30 feet from our table. It is always an interesting experience. We strolled the Main Street, all the while stamping our feet, drinking hot chocolate, and proclaiming it cold. Darting into antique shops and book stores might have helped, except that William had on enough clothes that he "looked like a tick about to pop". As a result, he was overheated in the stores and has no patience for antique shopping anyway.

By the time I returned home and gave the horses a brush, put on their blankets and threw them hay, my bumm was so cold that I had to go stand in the shower to warm up. I dream of silk underwear, and before you think I'm feisty for an old lady, I'm thinking of the kind that is rated like horse blankets for the cold.

I leave you with this short video on how to dress your child in the winter. The movie, A Christmas Story, is a real scream.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Teaching William

It may be that it will take me twenty years from now to fully educate William. He'll be leaving home about the time I'm ready to go to one (a nursing home, that is). Why would I say that? Well, every problem, every learning experience requires not only reading the question, but discussing all the possibilities.

One program we use is Explode the Code Online to learn basic reading skills. I recently sent them some feedback:

My feed back is about the questions in which he must answer yes or no. Perhaps it is my son, who not only tries to read the question, but also analyze the drawing that accompanies the question, and all the possibilities that might occur.

For example, is a grasshopper fine if it rests all day? The answer is yes, but my son wonders if the grasshopper is sick, for it might otherwise be eating and hopping, not resting.

Will a robin nest in a wastebasket? After explaining what a wastbasket is (we use "garbage can"), he said it wasn't possible to know if a robin had ever done that. They don't usually, but it doesn't mean they won't.

He doesn't know what a cream puff is. Is there no other more common word you could use, like perhaps ice cream?

Also, he'd like you to know that your horse drawing is not of a horse that has "trotted", but rather the horse is cantering. Comes from owning horses. You obviously don't.

I email them about once a week with such observations. I'm sure they appreciate me as their customer. I didn't tell them how William thinks a little less of them because they don't know that we send Valentimes, not Valentines, in February.

Dh says we are raising William to be royalty. Why? Well, he's taking piano lessons, art, fencing, and horseback riding. And of course, he has a princely name.

One counselor form I must fill out for Lauren asks me to write why we chose to homeschool. So far, I've come up with "because I didn't know any better".


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