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 4 horses, all rescues. Here is the ranch up the mountains where the horses stay.

Sunday, January 14, 2024

 Still here!   Alive and kicking (barely, some days)!!!!!

We are enjoying the grandkids.   Life happens at a slower pace for both of us (hubby and I) nowadays.   We are active with our daughter's 2 kids and our son and his family of 4 kids has moved across the country for a new job, so we don't see them often.   We still have Bodie, our lab rescue, and our cat, Abby (now 14 years old!) and we've been adopted by 3 feral cats who now live in our garage AND a momma cat and her 3 kittens!   We do leave food and goat's milk out for them and we cook them eggs for breakfast.  They seem to have taken over our side patio.   Fortunately our dog ignores them!

I don't get up to see the herd as much as I would like to.   Honestly, some days I'm too tired to even drive to the store and hubby doesn't drive anywhere anymore, ever since he has a "fender bender" last September.   So I do ALL the errands.   And, that wears me out.

So, just plugging along here, one day at a time.

Some recent pictures attached.   Daisies are from a few years ago.   Sunflowers are this year's.   I do have quite a few sunflowers, hollyhocks, cosmos, marigolds, and Black Eyed Susans still in the front yard, so I'm enjoying them.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Gigondas has crossed the Rainbow Bridge

 Gigondas is no longer with us.   I felt it this morning when I saw beautiful, pink clouds streaking across our sky.   I knew she was gone.   She has not been well all Fall and she didn't lose her fur from last Spring.   It was in clumps all over.   She had a nasal discharge which the vet gave her pills for, but her old body just didn't last and she died last night.  She was my oldest horse.   She always nickered for me when she saw my car drive into the ranch.   I miss her already.   We also lost our 17 year old cat this week, so it has been a shitty week.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Still here!!!

 We are still here, although we both seem to be moving slower these days.   Hubby pretty much stays indoors most days and watches the news and baseball.   I stay in and work on journals.   I did get outdoors in July and start my porch side garden, then we all got hit with watering restrictions, so half of my plants died.   I AM recycling kitchen sink water and even shower water, however, so the rest of the plants are struggling to stay alive.   Everything pretty much dies in August each year.   I did buy some vegetable seeds which I want to put into containers this fall and crops are exempt from water restrictions.

The birds are happy here and we have 3 feral cats who come into the yard, mostly to check out the gopher holes and leap up into the air to try to catch a bird (they don't...).   The gophers out front are pretty much OUT OF CONTROL.   I gave up for about a month and just let them run and dig wildly, but now I'm back on them.

Speaking of gopher holes, I looked out back 2 days ago and...a  big, fat GROUND SQUIRREL was sitting up next to its hole, surveying the back yard.   Now, Bodie, our dog, has caught 3 gophers, but I'd never seen this VARMIT before.   I absolutely HATE ground squirrels.   The horse ranch is full of them and their holes are EVERYWHERE!   So, I'm going to borrow a trap from the ranch owner and hopefully catch this one.   And, this is in spite of the fact that Bodie goes out back about 4x a day and I've even seen one of the feral cats in the #RIGGING  back yard!!!!!   THIS MEANS WAR!

We joined our daughter and her family over Memorial Day, up in Idyllwild.   Hubby, Bodie, and I had a small cabin and they had the big one 2 doors down.   The grandkids had a blast.   We haven't gone anywhere else (just too expensive), but they've gone up to Crestline a couple of times, and Arrowbear.   We are ALL staying home over Labor Day.

Our monsoon season this year is a real dud.   We got some sprinkles ONCE.  But, we haven't had days of 120+ ALL SUMMER!   Yippie!   And, it doesn't look like we will this month either.   In fact, next weekend, it is supposed to be "down" to 99 degrees here!   YAY!   Double digits!

Horses are all find except for Gigondas.   We think she has Cushings.   We all brush and brush her and she's still full of hair.   I'm going to have my vet look at her in September when all needs their shots and I'll have to make a decision about her at that time.   She's had a good, pampered life. While I would miss her, I DO NOT want her to suffer or be uncomfortable.   

So, that's all for now...just taking one day at a time.   The arthritis in my knees is so bad some days I can barely walk.   Getting up to the horse ranch is difficult, too, because of my lack of energy.   Hubby and I are pretty sure we both had COVID back in February of 2020, before it was widely known or suspected, and our energy levels since then haven't been the same.   We also BOTH suffer from brain fog some days.

Take care of yourself!

~Cheryl Ann~

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Summer's COMIN' !!!

 Still here.   Summer's heat is coming.   All my plants and flowers are really struggling this year, due to the heat and drought.   Fortunately I did not plant a garden.   My hollyhocks came back on their own and I've just been watering them enough to maintain them.  I have very few sunflowers.   We had horrible winds in March which almost took out all the hollyhocks.   We also have fewer birds this year, but my resident hummingbird population seems to be stable, at about 5.  I go out now and clean and refill their feeders almost every day.

Gigondas seems to have developed Cushings.   She is a shaggy wooly beast now.   I went up Saturday, brushed her, and her hair just came out in clumps.   I'm going back Tuesday and brush her again.   I'm also picking up some supplements for her.   I always wanted a big, chestnut thoroughbred mare and she is my dream.   The ranch owner says she'll be fine as long as she isn't in pain, which she isn't.   She kicked up her heels in her corral Saturday and nickered to me and even nuzzled me!   Gosh, it's only taken 18 years to get to this point!   She wasn't real fond of people when she first came to me, but she has learned that humans give treats and rubs.

Grandkids are growing.   I pick them up a couple of days after school each week and we spend one afternoon here at our house.  Their school year is soon coming to an end.

Just a few random photos.  I'm sewing tote bags, journal covers, and keeping busy.   I enjoy still being able to have some quiet mornings outdoors (so far) with my coffee.

Pretty Gigondas in 2016...
Anza got SNOW!
Our local mountains got snow in March...view from the Toro Peak webcams at 8,500 feet.

Friday, August 13, 2021

Still here, but hobbling around!

Well, we are still here.   Grandkids are back IN school, but I don't know how long that will last.   There are already cases of COVID exposure at their school.  (They are both now at the same school.)...we'll see...sigh...

I pulled a ligament in my left knee a month ago getting up out of my recliner.   I heard a loud "POP" and half my kneecap went one way, the other half went the other direction.   I screamed!   I nearly collapsed on the floor.   I woke hubby up from his nap!   I've been hobbling around ever since, but now I also go to physical therapy twice a week.   After each  session, I am physically EXHAUSTED!   Obviously I'm not doing much right now.   It took me 3 weeks to make 2 journals! I just couldn't focus or concentrate!   I'm getting better about taking time in the mornings and afternoons to work on some fall journals now.

So, life goes on.   I had to let my garden go because I just couldn't get out back to water it and, with it being August, it was time to rest it anyway.   I'm already planning my fall one IF (and that's a big "if") I can get out and get it ready.   If not, well, then I won't have one.

Coopers' hawks are returning almost daily to the bird bath and we still have doves, finches, and sparrows, and the occasional woodpecker.  I've heard a male grosbeak now for about a week, but haven't spotted him yet.  This August has been NO WHERE near as hot as last year's and next week, we will have double digit temps!   And, nights down in the 70's...YAY!   I'm going out for a very short walk (with my cane) every morning in our cool air.

Take care and stay healthy!

Cheryl Ann

Storm clouds up in our local mountains after a monsoon storm last week...

Another view of our mountains and clouds

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Still here and still healthy!

 We are still here and our family is still healthy.   We (4 adults) have been vaccinated, but not the 2 youngsters.   We just spent a wonderful weekend up in Big Bear, but I got altitude sickness and then hubby did, too, so we are glad to be home to our 200 foot elevation.  I didn't even take any photos!   Bodie got to socialize with our daughter's new Shiz Tsu puppy and the 2 dogs got along.   The grandkids wore us out, however, with their constant bickering.   We DID get to go to some yard sales and I bought an old dictionary and some linens to use in my journals.

It's been a long year many ways.   First, I had to babysit the granddaughter every 2 weeks.   Her other grandmother did the other 2 weeks each month, but she can no longer babysit since she has to take care of her brother.   So, that leaves me...I'm finding that babysitting an 8 year old can be EXHAUSTING!

My garden has taken off.   I have 6 tomato plants, 2 basil, and 2 peppers.   All are doing quite well.   I've picked some of the Roma tomatoes and they are DELICIOUS!

Hubby and I will be celebrating our 49th wedding anniversary tomorrow. He is cooking dinner and we are having a bottle of bubbly.

Stay well!

Cheryl Ann

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Still here...slugging along

 Since we are both over 65, we have now completed our 2nd COVID vaccine shot and are back to normal...whatever that is.   We now just stay at home.   I run out to the grocery store about once a week, although yesterday I did visit 2 fabric shops and I went to Target with our daughter and granddaughter and then I also ran to the post office to mail out a journal.   PHEW!   That was a busy day!

I've gained 10 pounds and hubby has gained 20.   I'm noticing my legs don't work like they used to and I have to consciously THINK about where I put my feet.   I'm 69 now and slowing down...YES!   I hate to admit it, but it is true.  Sometimes when I go out in the back yard, my feet get tangled up and I nearly go down.   And, I tend to shuffle a lot.   Hmmm....guess more walking is in order!   Doctor won't be happy with all the weight gain, either.   Well, when all you do is STAY HOME....

Some photos from the yard.   My hollyhocks are starting to open up.   Sunflowers are done in 2 areas, but new ones are coming up in another one.   Oh, and I have California poppies AND African daisies where the Chinaberry tree used to be!