Desert Horses

Welcome to my horse blog, Desert Horses. We live in the desert southwest, near Palm Springs, CA, but board our horses up in our local mountains where it is cooler in the summer. I have 5 horses, all rescues. Here is the ranch up the mountains where the horses stay, October, 2014. The roses are blooming!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bougenvillas~Nature Notes 040110
















I have three bougenvillas in my front yard. Two of them are the traditional reddish-pink and one is purple. I notice that the purple one has smaller flowers and they don't seem to be clumped together like the red/pink ones. I always await their blossoms because the red ones spill over my front fence and when I drive up the driveway, they are so pretty to see! And, with only two more days of school this week, I'll be able to enjoy their color soon! I've had parent conferences this week and haven't had a lot of extra time to walk or blog! My vacation, however, begins TOMORROW! YEAH!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Yesterday


I slept in LATE! I forgot that I had reset my alarm and I jumped up at nearly 6:30 a.m.~~~YIKES! I quickly made the coffee, showered, grabbed a bowl of cereal, and headed out the door! After the weekend's festivities I was exhausted and cranky at school (imagine THAT!) I konked out at 8:00 pm last night and got a decent night's sleep for parent conferences today. Jennifer and James had a BBQ yesterday for those folks who were friends and didn't make the wedding, so that was an all-day affair! After conferences today and tomorrow, I just have 1 more day before my spring break begins! Speaking of spring, our wildflowers are at their peak right now. I'd like to get some pics of them maybe Thursday afternoon.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Wedding~
































































































So, yesterday was our daughter's wedding. It was a small, family celebration, with about 30 people. They had the wedding at her new house and they provided the food. And, in this economy, and with the uncertainly over teaching jobs, they kept it simple and frugal. Food was from COSTCO. Plates were from Smart & Final. Dad had the cake made at the hotel for $18.00. Aunt Cathie provided some of her own wine and there was one case of sparkling wine. But, a good time was had by all and they are now officially husband and wife! A few of Jennifer's friends from her days at UCLA attended, as did some of her high school friends. James had some friends from out of town and his parents drove down from Yucca Valley. My cousin Valerie attended and we talked "horse talk" for quite a while. One of the guests knew sign language and she and Valerie had the chance to talk together. Today Jennifer and James are having about 100 people over during the course of the day for a BBQ, so it has been an exciting weekend! I'll have to go to school tomorrow to REST! Here are some pics from yesterday. That's our son, Hal, on the bottom pics, with our grandson, Ben, who is just learning to walk! He has a little train that has handles and he pushed it all over the tile floor! And, he has a little walker that he can scoot all over the floor with and man, he was CRUISING!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Sweet Peas







I took yesterday off of school to help our daughter get ready for her wedding this afternoon. I drove down there about 8:30 to deliver the champagne (actually, sparkling wine)...Champagne ONLY comes from the champagne region of France...and she put me to work cleaning her bathrooms and vacuuming her entire house's tile floor! Phew! Then, we ran errands for an hour. By the time I got home at 12:30, I was hungry and tired! I didn't get up to see the horses as hubby got home early and we went to the AT&T store and I picked out a new cell phone, a Nokia. Nothing fancy. It's a flip phone with BIG numbers. And, we saved $50 off our monthly cell phone bill because he traded in his Iphone for a Nokia like mine. Actually, he just discontinued its service and he is giving it to our daughter's fiance. So, all is well now with the cell phone. I glanced out back yesterday and noticed that I had quite a few sweet peas growing up along the fence, so I went out back with my scissors and cut a nice bouquet of them. We are having "light" winds today and I put them in my kitchen window so that their aroma can circulate around the house. Aren't they pretty? I dumped some horse manure on them last weekend and they sprouted up to over 7 feet tall! Some are now up and over the 6' chain link fence! So, I'll know now for next year where to plant them! I can prepare the soil in August and add lots of manure. It sure is nice to see them growing along the fence. I'll have to think of something to plant there for the summer months. Any ideas? It's a long stretch of 6' chain link fence...more sunflowers? My first crop out front has come and gone and I need to pull out their stalks. Desert gardening is indeed a challenge!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Hey, Quad...whatcha doin'?
















Last Saturday, when my friend Molly, came up to help me with the horses, it was a fairly windy day (again) up at the ranch. It can be perfectly calm down in the desert, but when I get up to the ranch, where I board my horses, the wind can be blowing. And, you all know what it's like to work with horses when the wind is rusting tree branches, blowing sand and dust, and getting them all hyped up! Well, Quad was no exception. This normally calm and collected horse just went NUTS when I took him out of his corral. Of course, also having Gigondas down in the arena stirring everybody up didn't help! So, I took him up to the round pen for a while, to let him "unwind" for a while. He wasn't too happy being up there all by himself and he ran around for some time, but he didn't call out. So, after putting Gigondas back in her pen, we led Quad down to the arena. By this time, he was calm and lead nicely, like he normally does. Must be spring fever? He took off for a romp in the arena and I caught one pic of him kicking up his heels. He was quiet and didn't call out there either. In fact, he only calls out to me when he knows I'm coming down the aisle or I have the feed pail! He's pretty quiet. He does nicker, however, when food is coming! (hehehee!) Look how he has filled out! And, look how DIRTY he is! As soon as it is a nice, warm weekend, he'll get a BATH!!!!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Contact!


And, we have contact! Molly is a great horse person for my herd to be around. She's always relaxed and she takes her time with them. And, they can tell that she really IS a "horse person"!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Hello! Who are you?


I like this photo of Gigondas meeting Molly. At one time, she would have just turned her back to Molly and walked away. Now, however, she is interested in meeting people! Good girl!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Gigo







Gigondas has come a long way in her training, despite all the horrible weather this winter. I was a little nervous on Saturday taking her out of her corral for the first time in quite a while, but she remained calm and didn't bolt. She relaxes when I talk to her or sing to her (only Gigondas can stand my singing!) and walked like a lady! I walked her to the arena and she stood for me until I unlatched her lead rope. Then, she took off! Phew! I've been working with her on standing still until I release her. Of course, she had to take a good roll and then off she went, running!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Weekend







Phew! What a weekend! I'm going to have to go to school to rest today! Saturday morning I awoke at 3:30 a.m. I don't know what's WRONG with me! Anyway, I went for my morning walk and decided to walk up one of the trails that go into the canyon. This one goes down a retaining wall and into a wash and is one of the more heavily used trails. Beautiful cliffs line one side of it. There were some hikers behind me, so I felt safe walking alone. As soon as I upload those pics, I'll post them! Then, I met my friend and fellow blogger, Molly and we drove up to see the herd. She hadn't seen them for some time and was anxious to see her horsey friends! All the horses are shedding out, especially the mustangs and Quad. I walked Gigondas down to the arena and she was a perfect lady. She was very anxious to run, but she waited patiently for me to let her go. Then, I took Quad out to the round pen. He was a handful, which isn't like him. I think it was a combination of the wind and the fact that it has been a while since he's been out of his corral. With the weather like it was this winter, it's been raining the past few weekends and this was the first weekend in MONTHS that I've been able to work with any of the horses! We let him run and run in the round pen for a while, put Gigondas away, and put him away for the day. By 1:30, we were exhausted and tired! So, we drove down the mountain and had lunch at Native Foods (a vegetarian restaurant) and chatted some more! Then, yesterday I drove up to the ranch about 8:30 (no walking that morning) and stayed until 1:30. I was able to walk Gigondas down to the arena again, took Quad to the arena for a romp and exercise (I love to watch his flowing trot) , and even let Sunni have a turn! I cleaned water troughs, raked corrals, and gathered up some "horse apples" for my sweet peas out back. I was exhausted by 2:00, drove home, and fell asleep! What a weekend! It was a lot of work and I'm tired, but it is a good tired! Here are some pics of fuzzy Cali from Saturday.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

More wildflower pics




Friday afternoon I drove out to an area of the desert which is part of the Coachella Valley Preserve. As such, it remains undeveloped and is one of the last large areas not touched by humans. There are many, many little yellow flowers which are blooming now. I also noticed some lupine (the purple flowers) and they are also growing up on the highway, so I'll stop and take some photos this morning. I prefer to walk in the morning than the afternoon for a couple of reasons. First, I don't have to wear sunscreen. Second, it is cooler in the morning. Finally, I'm really TIRED in the afternoons and I don't have as much energy. So, if I wake up and get going early enough in the morning, I can get a 20 minute walk done before I have to leave for work. And sometimes the sun is just starting to come up and I get some interesting photos!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Blog award and desert wildflowers 032010




I want to thank fickleinpink for bestowing me this Beautiful Blogger award! That was so kind of her to do this! You can see her blog at: http://fickleinpink.blogspot.com/2010/03/beautiful-blogger-award.html. I am driving up to the horses this morning with my good friend and blogger buddy, Molly! YEAH! Finally some decent weather. Our plan is to give a bath to as many horses today as we can and get the MUD off of them! Oh, and then to rotate them to the arena for some exercise! Thank goodness the weather is cooperating! It has been in the 80's here in the desert all week. But, for us desert dwellers, 80 is very comfortable. "It's a DRY heat!" Really, I love days that are in the 80's. 70's are a little chilly for us desert rats! But, 80 is perfect for walking, gardening, or working the horses! Of course, it won't be 80 degrees up in the mountains, more like 65 or so! The wildflowers this year are absolutely spectacular! I don't remember a year with this many. Of course, it is due to all the rain we had this winter. Our normal rainfall total is 4 inches and this year, we've already had over 5 inches of rain! The mountains have a beautiful green tinge to them, which is nice now, but as summer wears on, they will turn brown. Oh, well, I guess we should all enjoy Spring while we can. Summer is only a few months away! Now, for 7 things about myself: (1) I was and am an only child. My cousins are like my brothers and sisters. (2) I hate being inside. That's why I get out and walk in the mornings and afternoons. I used to be able to leave my classroom door open, but, at the new school, if I do, it just turns off the air conditioning! (3) My dad, being from Connecticut, taught me to ice skate at a very young age and I took lessons for many years. Nope. No triple jumps! Sorry. (4) I love to write and got published in first grade in my school's creative writing book. (5) I've always secretly wanted to be an artist. As you know, my cousin, Valerie Trozelle, IS a professional artist. I found out that my mom started painting when she retired. (6) I've always loved animals and have always had cats and dogs. Most of our animals, including our horses, are rescues. (7) I have a green thumb, but only for outdoor plants and crops. Any green plant I've ever brought into the house, I've killed! Go figure. I'd like to open up the award to anyone who would like to put it on your blog and tell us 7 things about yourself! So, please take it and share a little bit about yourself. Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Stallions Sculpture~SkyWatch Friday 031910






This sculpture is right down the street from our house, at our local community college. I had seen it a few times, but never had my camera with me until one morning before the time change. What are your thoughts about this work of art? SkyWatch Friday for March 19, 2010.




Thursday, March 18, 2010

Cali modeling her halter







This way, and a that way! "I'm so BEAUTIFUL!" (LOL)...isn't she a sweetheart?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Free to run~~Cali











It's been quite a while since I took Cali down to the arena for a romp. She and Scout have a large paddock and, frankly, the weather this winter has just been awful. Rain, snow, freezing rain...But now it looks like Spring is FINALLY on the way! We are forecast to have our warm temps last through the weekend. YEAH! I can start washing each horse and getting the mud off of them! Quad is especially covered with mud and I can't seem to get it all brushed off! Are your horses this muddy? Cali was pretty easy to brush and she wasn't covered in mud. She enjoyed her romp in the arena. It was so windy this day that I didn't take any other horse out! Even she spooked three times walking back to her paddock! And, that isn't like her. She is normally a very calm horse.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Living Desert and time change~That's My world for Tuesday, March 16, 2010







Sunday's time change has radically altered my walking routine. I was out walking in the morning, before leaving for school. Now, however, it is still dark when I have to leave. I didn't wish to stop my walking program, so on Sunday morning, after my walk, I drove over to the Living Desert Reserve in Palm Desert, and renewed my membership. And, yesterday, after work, I parked my car under a shady Palo Verde in the parking lot, and walked around for over an hour! I didn't take many photos. Instead, I concentrated on seeing where I could walk and how far. Turns out, even in the 80 degree heat, I was able to walk pretty much anywhere! I was pleased to see that the Mexican wolves were out in their enclosure and people were stopping by to read about them and observe them. They both looked furry and healthy. Today I will remember to take water with me as I was quite dehydrated by the end of my walk! That's My World for Tuesday, March 16, 2010.