Tuesday, September 6, 2011

As summer leaves changes come

We moved here to have horses and to homestead. It'll be 11 years this year and we're not where we might have hoped. We've have and have had horses, 10 years ago I had rescued an elderly gelding I named Saoradh. I was lucky at that time as I wasn't working, Aaron was, so I was able to spend much time with him, both of us healing. Then I got a part time job before getting a full-time night watch job. At the time I got that job, he was settled, we got into a nice routine his last few months, as he was slowing down. I'd come home, we'd ride then later play with ground work.

When I lost him, I got the clear message to adopt a PMU foal. This job became a bigger issue then, for a young foal required much more energy and work. Daytime energy and work. Most of homesteading does, really, and my body knew this. When we moved here I went from being nocturnal most of my life to almost immediately diurnal...a morning person even! While the nightwatch job had it's perks as far as warrior path stuff went, especially Outlaw Warrior/Fenian workings, which I'll talk about soon in Championing Ourselves, it clearly had it's disadvantages in our over all life.

For five years I was on this schedule. Due to this, this filly Saorsa, now 4, is probably a bit wilder than I'd like, especially as she's a left brain mare who does not appreciate having to do anything that is not her own idea. She's extremely brave, never spooky, but instead is headstrong and stubborn. If I spent more time with her, perhaps she'd be a bit more cooperative. She's doing well in her training and I had no intention of backing her prior to next year, but I'm not thrilled by the lack of time I've spent.

But this all is changing now. I am leaving the night watch job, something, I'll be able to spend this fall working with her more, as well as with the new, older mare, Misty, we're adopting from Saorsa's trainer. Between more attention and a new pasturemate, hopefully Saorsa's attitude will improve a bit. Oh, I don't want docile and timid, but just a bit more acceptance of negotiation would be nice. And given this attitude, more time working things out will be a good thing.

This is a scary time, this will mean neither of us will be working full-time at the moment. Aaron is looking, but there is little out there. He'll sign up for more time with the ambulance, of course, and given the car issue (we have only one) this will give him a great chance for more experience. I will try to take some clients as a personal trainer but given the economy and the location, I'm not expecting a living out of that. I know we can do this, but not having that all important full-time job, especially as home-owners, is, yeah, a bit nerve-wracking.

As Aaron is likely to take as many shifts as he can and try to get at least part-time work, I'll be taking over as the primary "farmer" here. Aaron began taking over that role more and more as I burned out more and more from working nights, especially after he lost his job. I tried to spend my few daylight time with Saorsa or the Minis as much as possible.

But of course, we've got a nice list of things that really will take both of us to do, especially as winter is coming soon. We need to add a "stall" to the run-in barn so there is more room for the girls to hang out, as well as a space to separate them when we want to work with one. I'd love to tear down the whole structure, which was not designed to house horses, and start all over, but there is that little Catch-22 that it's impossible to afford to do it now that we have the time to do it (and there was never enough coming in for us to hire someone else to do it).

We also need better winter quarters for the chickens as well. There is some work on the house that should get done to make things better for this winter. And a shooting range to build but that might not happen until next spring (and will be further discussed in Championing Ourselves most likely). And there is a lot we could do, also best done together, to better prepare things for next year's planting.

One more week and I'm home.

I also look forward to spending more time with our land here. I spent my nights in the woods, but they were other woods, not the ones that own me. Now I barely do that, locked into one campsite. I get out here sometimes on my nights off, but far less during the day. It seems that the turning of the seasons here is largely missed by me. By chance I got to see the geese giving flying lessons to their growing goslings this year, but some years I've missed that all together. I feel out of touch with this land, with it's Spirits.

And so, we'll see what this part of the journey has for us, this land and the animals, domestic and wild, we share it with in this new stage.

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